About Me

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Do You Gamble?

I gamble every once in a while. I like to buy the occassional scratch ticket, and I buy Tim Horton's hot chocolate only when the Roll up the Rim to Win is taking place. I have been to the casino twice in my life. Once when I turned 19, and I broke even. One other time I went with BF, and I spent about $10 but we listened to a cover band so it was fun.

My roommate and her boyfriend are coming up to my town on Friday. She has mentioned to me in a text that she wouldn't mind going to the casino that is about 45 minutes from my house. I haven't replied. I'm not sure if I want to go really. She said she wants to play the tables, I don't even know how to play any of those games! I might tag along for fun and play a bit. I'll limit myself though, $20 perhaps. Hmmmm.

Have you ever gambled? Do you gamble often? How much do you usually spend when you go to a casino? Have you ever come home with more than you left with? Do you play the tables or the slots?

Monday, March 29, 2010

Junk Food is Addictive

It's true. They just did a study on it, with the results in the news today. It's as addictive as cocaine!!

Scientists used rats to study the effect of junk food on the brain. Rats were given access to junk food and they found that the pleasure centres of the brain reacted in the same way as when rats are given illegal drugs like cocaine. Rats that did not have access to the junk food did not have the same changes in brain activity.

The scientists also SHOCKED the rats on their feet to let them know it was time to stop eating junk food. The ones with full access to junk food kept on eating even when they knew they would be shocked. The healthy rats with an hour access to junk food quit eating it when they knew a shock was coming. Smart little suckers!!

When the junk food was taken from the rats' diets the junk food rats went on a hunger strike! They refused to eat anything! They also experiences withdrawal-like symptoms.

It's interesting. I love junk food! I don't think I could refrain from eating another potato chip or chocolate even if I wanted to, I just do not have that kind of willpower. It's kinda scary how it is AS addictive as cocaine though. I think moderation is key!

More on the study here.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Weekend Recap

BF came on Thursday evening and just left about 2 hours ago. We had a nice weekend. We watched some TTDUP, played some wii, watched a new show he likes Breaking Bad, he watched a chickflick with me, we cooked my family supper together, had a fancy drink night, played some bingo lottery tickets, hung out with family, did some grocery shopping, ordered supper one night. We went to my storage unit and went through a lot of my stuff there and picked what we wanted to keep for the apartment this summer and what to give away or discard. He ended up taking quite a bit back with him, mostly kitchen supplies. We also spent an hour talking with my family and neighbours listening to a wind-up radio in candlelight for Earth Hour last night. Did anyone else participate in Earth Hour? We had a nice time, it flew by quickly. I spent $10 on ordering supper, and $5 on lottery tickets, and $31 on groceries.

Next weekend is Easter. My cousin (best-friend) is coming up, it will be nice to see her. It's April too in just a few days! I don't remember a March being this warm ever! I remember a few years back though the snow had almost melted and on April Fool's Day we got a big snowfall! I wonder if that will happen again this year!!? I sure hope not, I'm enjoying the sunshine and lack of winter boots.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bad Day Got Worse

I worked today in a Grade Five class. What an awful class! Such attitude! Some kids just flat out refused to do their work, one refused to even enter the class!! I don't think I've had a worse class. Both an EA and the French teacher made me feel better though when they told me it is like this EVERY DAY!!

After school I was driving home on the highway and I saw a school bus in the right lane with it's flashing lights and the stop sign come out. I was in the left lane at the time and I slowed to a stop. I was the first car stopped. I look in my rearview mirror and the car behind me comes to a quick stop but stops behind me. Then as I'm waiting for the bus to start moving again I hear SCREEEEEECHHH, I look in my rearview quickly and see a minivan coming toward us and I think I move my car up a bit (I forget) and I hear a huge CRASH and all I could see was the minivan crash into the car behind me and glass flying everywhere!

I sat in my car stunned for a few moments. The kids in the bus were shocked too watching the scene take place. I moved my car over to the right side of the highway and park off to the side. The mom who got her kids off the bus runs to the car that was smashed behind me. Thankfully no one was hurt in the accident, just shaken up. The woman driving the minivan was REALLY pregnant, at least 8 months I would say! I hope everything is okay with her and baby. She was on her phone walking after a few moments. The paramedics came and checked the two girls out and then the police came and took a statement from all four of us. SO THANKFUL that no one was hurt! Definitely shook me up, my knees and hands were shaking for the whole time I was on the side of the road.

Remember ALWAYS pay attention when driving! Stop for buses that are stopping and slow down when you see flashing lights. Also if you witness an accident occur, you should pull over, call 911, check to see if anyone is injured, and wait for the police to give your statement and information. Drive Safe!! :)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Last Weekend and Looking Ahead

I didn't spend a cent! Woohoo!!! It was a bit of a boring weekend, I watched about 4 hours of Gene Simmons Family Jewels yesterday. But no spending too which makes me happy :)

BF is coming up this weekend and I want to take him out somewhere. I was thinking maybe a maple syrup farm if they are still in season, or go out to a movie. We'll decide later, but neither will be too expensive. He is going to come up Thursday and stay until Sunday.

I worked today. I was expecting no work at all this week since it's the week after March Break. The principal also asked me if I would work for one of his teachers on Thursday. Then another teacher came up and asked me if I was interested in covered him for 6 days in May. He wants to recommend me to his principals (he works at 2 different schools) because I work well and have been in for him a few times. That would be great if the principals are able to set that up, he said no guarantees that they will allow it though. It is very nice of them to even think of me for a job though!

April is a 3 paycheque month and a GST cheque month so I hope to put around $800 toward debt! Hope the work keeps coming in!!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Talk About It, Talk About It, Talk About It...

BF and I have been talking about money lately. He finally had a chat with his future employers (his mom and her business partner) about everything! His salary, benefits, rent, etc. Yes he will be living above where he is working. It's a REALLY nice small apartment and perfect location!

He has a bunch of money saved up, about $31,000 (he doesn't know the exact amount, but that's the minimum of what he has saved). Once he is finished school he will owe about $39,000 he says. So he figures he will pay off $30,000 right away (unless he decides to buy a car), but either way he will put a good chunk onto his balance. I also figure that once he starts working, he will have almost $1000 to put toward debt, as well as $600 a month toward savings. So he could be debt-free in less than a year!! Then he can have a little more fun with his money and start putting it toward a future fund and more into savings.

I also brought up the idea of opening a joint account together to start a "future fund." This fund could be put toward a wedding, honeymoon, house, etc. I said maybe we could both contribute $100 bi-weekly starting in the fall. He said it was a good idea. Then I thought maybe he could open a TFSA, and I could continue with mine and turn them into our "future funds" to earn a higher interest and it would be tax-free instead of the joint account. He liked this idea too, this would also allow us to contribute at our own rates (he will have a steady income, while mine is variable). Although I do still like the idea of being held more accountable to make sure I have that $100 bi-weekly and it would be nice to start a joint account too! Teamwork :)

Do you think a joint account or using our TFSA's would be better to use as a future fund? Also, do  you think it would be wise to aggressively pay off his student loans, or would it be better to put more into savings or something else?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Two Types of People...

My mom always tells me this before St. Patrick's day, "there are only two types of people in the world, those who are Irish, and those who wish they were."

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

I'll be working at the rec centre making some Irish crafts and wearing green. When I was a kid my mom would put green food colouring in the mashed potatoes and even milk on St. Patrick's day. Do you do anything special for this little holiday? Are you Irish?

Monday, March 15, 2010

Weekend Spending

Another weekend of spending. I seriously need to just lock myself in the house on the weekend and then no spending will be done. I went to Toronto on Friday. We stayed at a hotel (BF covered it) until Sunday there. We met in Toronto because it is about the half way mark between BF and I. It worked out well because his grandpa's birthday was on Sunday and we were supposed to meet his family there for a b-day lunch.

Saturday we went out shopping. My goal was to find a dress for his "prom" (graduation formal). I tried on a bunch, and found one I liked but it was a bit too casual for a formal. I did buy it though ($45 from Sears) to wear in the summer, maybe even to the wedding we are going to in July. We also went to a Corelle store and I told BF I would buy him a housewarming gift and I wanted it to be new dishes. I love corelle, and so we picked some out. In total I spent $179 there, along with a few handy kitchen tools and some corningware. We went out for lunch and supper that day too, breakfast was continental at the hotel (thankfully).

Sunday we woke up early, although with the time change it wasn't THAT early. BF got a call from his family saying his grandpa wanted to call off the b-day because he wasn't feeling 100%, so we were kind of in Toronto for no reason this weekend but it was a fun getaway for us. We went shopping again that morning to find that dress! That's when we looked at engagement rings (sigh) and I bought a couple of work shirts ($33). Then finally we found another mall (there are tons of malls in Toronto!!) and it had a Winners. There I found a dress I liked!!! Yay, and it was only $33! What a deal, thanks Christina for reminding me about Winners :)

I spent more than I wanted to this weekend because of the dishes, but less than expected on the dresses! Next weekend I'm staying home, no more spending!! Hope you all had a great weekend.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Does Size Matter?

BF and I were looking at engagement rings this weekend. Just for fun...no engagement is a while off. But I was curious to see what I liked and would not like. Also what clarity (flaws to the human eye), cut (how sparkley it is), colour (colourless to yellowish), and carat (how big it is) all meant. Well we found out! It was actually REALLY fun and enlightning! I tried on several different rings, the most expensive being $10,000!!!! I wore something worth $10,000, I'm still kind of amazed by that haha, I'm surprised they let you try things like that on so easy. I didn't even like the $10,000 ring. It was set too high, and surprisingly to me (and BF) it was too big.

Too big??

I tried on a bunch of other rings, and we even got to look at the diamonds through that special diamond magnifying glass. It was cool! The one I decided I liked best was a round cut 0.50 carat diamond with really small diamonds on either side of the centre stone, and the band in white gold. It was so pretty, and now BF knows the style I like.

What do you want your engagement ring to look like, is there a certain size you want it? If you are married what does yours look like? Just curious what others like.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Why Did I Do That?

Do you ever have those regrets, where you ask yourself, "Why did I just do that?" I've had a few lately, lots in my life. Why did I date that guy? Why did I stay up late watching Jay Leno instead of just going to bed when I had to wake up early? Why did I buy that gym membership I never use? Why did I buy that shirt hanging in my closet with the tags still on it?

A couple of weeks ago it was buying books I did not need. Today it was making and eating an entire box of KD to myself. There goes that gym workout yesterday! Why did I do that?

What is your biggest "why did I do that" moment? Have you had any recently?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

March Break

I've been getting pretty steady work the past few weeks which is AWESOME. I think it might have to do with teachers wanting some extra time off to work on report cards, but I will take it anyway I can get it! I taught kindergarten yesterday which is one of my favourite grades to teach :) Today I didn't receive any calls for school but they called me at the rec centre to work at the child centre there (good timing) and so I worked a few hours there and was able to get some programming done for the March Break activities I will be running next week.

It's almost March Break!! Where has this year even gone? It's good though. I've been fairly productive. I taught myself a new crochet technique today, how to make a ripple pattern, but I can only do it using a single crochet, the double crochet messes me up. I'll work on it. I also went to the gym today with my brother, I think I'll be feeling it tomorrow since I haven't been doing any exercises lately, lack of motivation.

This Sunday is BF's grandpa's 88th birthday. BF asked me if I wanted to go to Toronto this weekend again and spend Friday and Saturday night at a hotel. Of course I said yes. I'm excited for it, it's always nice to stay at a hotel for a little bit, mini-vacation for us. His master's formal is coming up (I like to call it the prom) and so I need a dress for it so I'm hoping to go shopping for one while we are in Toronto. I was actually thinking about making a dress, but it's in less than a month (April 4th) and I just don't think I'll be able to get it done having never made a dress before. A month might be cutting it short. I own ONE dress (I recently donated a couple to the Salvation Army) and I've worn it the past few dress-worthy occasions so it's time to invest in another one, hopefully one on sale!

This prom coming up is also an incentive to make me want to exercise better and eat well. My brother's co-worker gave him a bunch of cookies that she made yesterday, they were huge and heavy like steaks, and I had 4 yesterday and ate the last 2 today :( I've probably gained a few pounds in the past week. Hopefully I can get my butt in gear and start eating healthier (less steak-size cookies at least) to look good in my dress.

Do you have any March Break plans?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

My Mileage

Jessie did a post in February asking others, "what's your mileage?" I had never calculated this before. However I was curious after I read this post. I have recenely calculated this mileage for the last 5 times I filled up.

I range from 6.4litres/100km (36.38 miles per US gallon) to 7.7litres/100km (34.45 miles per US gallon). I got these calculations from a mileage calculator (so easy) from this website. I do mostly highway travelling due to work. I also travelled above the speed limit most of the time.

Some ways to save save on fuel are to slow down. This one is easier said than done though.

Don't drive, or limit driving. The weather is getting nicer, can you walk? Can you do all of your errands in one trip?

You should check your tire pressure. Keep 'em pumped up!

Accelerate at a gradual pace. The faster you burn it from a stop or slow speed the more fuel you are using.

Travel at a constant speed. This goes along with the last one, the less shifting your car has to do, the better, especially in traffic jams.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Weekend Recap

How was your weekend? I had a fun weekend. I left my house early on Saturday morning to visit my cousin and her boyfriend in Toronto. We got our eyebrows done (the girl waxed, threaded, plucked and cut them), it was my first time getting that done EVER. I was so nervous but it really wasn't that painful. We also did some shopping at Costco, I love that store! We met up with my BF then on the subway and went to see a comedy show at Absolute Comedy. It was very funny!! What is weird too, is that I only know about 5-10 people that live in Toronto, and I saw one of them there, a guy from my Teacher's College class. It's such a small world!!

We drove to BF's house after and celebrated his friend's birthday. On Sunday BF made me breakfast, we watched some funny animal youtube videos, we washed my car, and bought a few things for his new apartment. It was a really fun weekend. I spent $40 at Costco (some books, and cards), $30 at the comedy club, $10 at the bar celebrating BF's friend's birthday, and $20 on eating out. No more spending this week!!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Updated Savings

Today was payday. It was a small paycheque, next one will be better. However I was still able to update my savings with it. I put $250 toward my TFSA, $100 toward Christmas/Gift, and $100 toward travel. Feels nice to see those progress bars grow!!

My next paycheque will go toward my CC (stuff I purchase this month), and debt. I'm looking foward to it!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Another Day, Another Dollar

I went in for a half day today teaching Spec-Ed at my old elementary school. I was preparing my day, and I get a call to come down to see the principal in the grade 7/8 classroom. I go and he is there with the kids and asks me to forget what I was supposed to be doing and that he needs to change my schedule to cover the 7/8 class, they weren't able to get a supply for her. Then he asks what I'm doing for the afternoon. Nothing. He asks me to stay for the afternoon too. Woohoo. I've been getting a lot of work lately which has been really nice. The payday in 2 weeks will be pretty good compared to lately.

I didn't have a lunch though, and I was supposed to meet my mom and grandpa for his birthday lunch at Swiss Chalet. Lucky for me it was only about 5 minutes from the school. So I still got to go out for lunch with my grandpa and back with lots of time before the bell rang. Practiced some sign language with him too. Unfortunately my weekend ASL class was cancelled so it was nice to be able to practice with someone fluent.

Tomorrow is payday, yay! Hope everyone has a fantastic Friday and weekend.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

How Much For A Haircut?

I am getting my hair cut tomorrow. I'm also going to get it highlighted, I'm so excited. I don't get to go to the hairdresser very often. 3-4 times each year. It's expensive and it's very hard to schedule around my working schedule. However I already know that I am only working in the morning tomorrow so I called today and booked an appointmennt for tomorrow afternoon.

How often do you get your hair cut? How much does it cost to get done? What do you get done?

I have long hair, not crazy long but below my shoulders. I get partial highlights, and then about once a year I will get full highlights. I go to a place I trust and they do a nice colouring. It costs me about $100 with tip. Yikes, that's why I don't get it done very often.

Boys have it easy, my brother cuts his own hair! FREE! I could highlight it myself but that is such a process and it never turns out the way you want. I have light brown hair, and if I don't get the colour right it turns out a weird orangish colour, so it's worth it to me to have it professionally done.

Monday, March 1, 2010

February Spending, March Goals

February was an expensive month. I spent a total of $1669 eeeeek! The breakdown:

Expenses (Total $959)
Car - $506 (I had some repairs, an oil change, not typical)
Food - $4
Restaurant - $22
Clothing - $0
Gifts - $6
Personal - $77 (pills and some foundation)
Education - $50 (applied to several jobs)
Phone - $42
Everything Else - $252 (this was for some books, $26 mailing fee, fabric, and some CC payment leftover from Jan, no interest was paid at least)

Debt (Total $300)
Family loan - $300

Savings (Total $410)
Christmas/Gifts - $60
TFSA/E-Fund - $250
Travel Fund - $100

Wasn't a great month with car expenses and buying books I really didn't need.

Looking forward to March, I want to spend way less on my car. At least $300 to my family loan again. I'm hoping at least $400 also to savings. I also want to get my hair cut and highlighted. I hope to be busy with work this week to help with these things!