About Me

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

2015 Goals

I am a little late to the new years resolutions, but late is better than never.

My financial goals are:

Get Married without accumulating any debt - This is actually an easy one since I have my TFSA which will be at $30,000 by the end of the month. However, J won't have much to contribute since he is still paying off his loans and I said I would rather him focus on doing that. I am hoping we can keep the wedding to a $20 000 budget???

Save $3000 in RSPs - If I get another full-time teaching position next school year this should be doable. I have already contributed $1000.

Save $5500 to TFSA - I have contributed $1500 so far. After the wedding, this account will be used toward a down payment on a house. The goal is to purchase our first house in 2016. Basically after I take money out of the TFSA, I hope to still have $15 000 in it by the end of the year.

Save $1000 in my Furniture Fund - It currently has $2000. I bought a new bedroom last summer but would like to start saving so we can buy a living room set when the house buying time comes.

Save $1000 in a Travel Fund - I currently have $1900 in this fund so would like to up it so we can go on a trip likely next summer (delayed honeymoon).

Monday, February 23, 2015

Wedding Planning

J says, "These things plan themselves." Haha.

We have a venue (will confirm this week) and set a date of September 26, 2015!

That's 7 months away. It's totally doable but I was feeling stressed with report cards the past few weeks that I didn't allow myself to think wedding stuff. Now that they have been sent home, I am enjoying pinning things and talking about it with people.

I went to a wedding show with J this past weekend and I am feeling better about the planning process. I was a little shocked last week when a co-worker told me I should have my dress by now. I said, "uhhh, well we've only been engaged for two weeks!" We are going to do a hall. It's a pretty hall with a fireplace and big windows overlooking the lake. There is a ceremony site close by and we will rent a train to take us to and from it. They have a heritage train to do this. We will pray for nice weather.

We met with a potential caterer this weekend who is supposed to come back with a price for us at some point this week. It's going to be expensive since we need them to rent the dishes/cutlery/etc. I've let this sink in and I know we will cut costs in some ways but it's still going to be pricey. Our guest list is currently 196 but we are going to cut it to 150.

We are going to do our own open bar and we will hire a couple of people to run it and help with takedown. My brother is a brewer and will be able to give us a discount on beer, but we will have to apply for a special occasions permit and buy the rest of the alcohol (and supplies) ourselves.

We will have to rent chairs for the ceremony. J thought we could do hay bales with wooden planks and I loved the ides, but I think it will end up costing more than chairs.

We need to hire a DJ, and potentially a photographer (J's aunt and uncle said they could do it). Then flowers and other decorations (backdrop, head table, centrepieces, etc)! So much to do!

Do you have any favourite things about a wedding you've been to? Any wedding suggestions? Or things NOT to have/do?

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

I Said YES!!!!

February 1st is a day I won't forget. It's the day J asked me to marry him. I was absolutely surprised and still cannot get over the fact that I am getting married!!!! To the man of my dreams, how is this real life??

I made it to be the most awkward proposal ever, but we rolled with it and that's kind of just how we are....awkward!

On Sunday morning we started our day off normally. J bringing me coffee in bed, and he playing guitar in the next room. We chitchat back and forth poking fun at each other and I request a Matchbox 20 song. It was a lesser known one and I finally get out of bed with my phone to play it for him. I do a little dance and sing along and sit close to him looking for the chords on my phone.

He begins to play Adam Sandler's "I Wanna Grow Old With You" song and changing some of the lyrics. This is still not out of the ordinary. After he sings "I'll buy you chocolate and flowers too..." He starts clearing his throat and nodding toward our coffee table. I was so consumed with looking for chords before that I didn't notice the flowers and chocolate sitting there the whole time! Again not out of the ordinary for him to do something like this. But I was caught so off guard by it this time that as he continues on with his song I got emotional by the surprise. I leave the room to get a kleenex.

I am laughing at myself in the next room for getting emotional over flowers and some M&Ms!! I give myself a minute and J says, "Are ya coming back??" I go back on my phone now trying to avoid looking at him because I am slightly embarrassed of tearing up. He continues singing, keeping some lyrics the same and changing others.

At the end he sings, "I'll make you dinner and rub your feet, will you marry me?" I look up and smile and then immediately I'm back to my phone.

Then he starts searching for something under the throw pillow at the other side of the couch. Then he throws two blankets and the throw pillow on the floor. At this point I'm looking at him confused as to why he is being so messy. He comes out with a box.

He gets down on one knee and then like every other girl who has ever been proposed to I continue to say, "Are you serious?" And cry happy tears, even happier than when I found out he got me chocolate and flowers just minutes earlier...

Awkward proposal? Yes. But it was real. And I am absolutely ecstatic about being with J forever.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Retroactive Pay

Apparently I was getting paid the same amount as an "unqualified teacher" in our school board. I hadn't noticed since I have only had one short term contract before this one that I was in the lowest pay bracket. 

With more qualifications you are entitled to a higher salary in a pay grid for teachers. I SHOULD be at the second highest one and am finally going to have it show on my paycheques too. I've been trying to get this changed since the end of September when I first noticed!

So Friday is pay day and it will be an extra large chunk. Approximately $2000 more than I have been getting paid so that will help put a dent in some of the goals I have for this year. I actually think I will put half in my TFSA and the other in an RRSP. 

Now my regular paycheque will be increased by about $225 after taxes. That was a lot to be missing out on for several months. So excited!!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Happy New Year!

Wow, it has been almost one year exactly since I have been on here. I've somewhat missed it but life has been absolutely crazy busy!

What has even happened? Well J and I went on all the dates I gave him for his gift last Christmas. J's brother got married to his wife after 12 years of dating! J's sister had a baby at the end of November and we were asked to be Godparents (maybe the highlight of my year).

At the end of the summer (I was a waitress all summer) I had an interview for a teaching position within my board but an hour away. I thought it would be good practice to go for the interview, the principals made me feel pretty at ease and I joked around a lot with them thinking I didn't stand a chance. Well they took a chance and offered me a full-year contract which I am almost half-way complete!

I am teaching the most adorable and challenging group of 23 (was 24) SK/1 students. I've never felt more stress or more joy. I have gone home crying and other times laughing, it is the best job!! I am completely sleep deprived but wouldn't want to be doing anything else. Those kids can drive me crazy but in the same day they can make me feel so proud of their accomplishments. Kids that didn't know all of the sounds in the alphabet who are already reading simple texts. Kids that could barely count to 11 that can now count past 100 and skip count by 5s and 10s. And we are not even halfway through the year.

Financially, I maxed out my TFSA and contributed $1500 to my RRSPs and that's about it. But I'm okay with it.

Why? Well, my career is what's important to me right now. I have money in the bank and rent is kind of consuming me right now. Again, I'm okay with it.

J is definitely the man I want to marry. Even a year and a half later I laugh everyday and love to be around him. So why not just get married? Well, he has debt: OSAP and a bank loan. He has been picking up reffing hockey games and making $3000 payments to his loans each month. We have the same goals and he is determined. I said I would help by paying our rent, he pays groceries. In addition, I have also been renting a room from a teacher to cut my 2.5 hour a day commute down 4 days a week. So I am paying $1325 a month in rent, plus oil heating.

I am not able to save a lot right now but I have $28000 in my TFSA, plus a comfortable amount in the bank plus I'm able to help J, I am really not worried about it right now.

Tomorrow I have to be on a panel and speak in front of more than 300 people, now that is what is really worrying shy me right now.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Facing Potential Eviction

J and I moved into our apartment in May of last year. We met up with our landlords days before that and paid them a year's worth of cheques. We did not sign a lease.

About 2-3 weeks ago a man came over and told J that our landlords have not been paying their bills and unless they pay within the next 24 hours that our place will then be owned by the bank.

Well it seems as though they did not pay because last Wednesday a man came to our house to inform us of the changes. He said that the house is now owned by a branch of Scotiabank. We were told to cancel our cheques to our landlords and issue new ones to Veranova. A woman called last week to ask a bunch of questions (appliances in the house, amount we pay each month, what utilities are covered, asked about water and heat, pets, etc).

The man returned on Friday to change our locks and take pictures of every room in the apartment, he told us to call them if we see the former landlords ever on the property or trying to take any of their items.....yikes!

Anyway the good news is that we are still allowed to live here. The house will go into foreclosure soon and then the bank will try to sell the house. If someone buys the house we still get 60 days to stay if they want us gone. However because we live in an apartment attached to the house they may even want the extra income of tenants and allow us to continue on in our agreement and stay as well.

The first thing J said to the man when he told us all this was "we still have two and a half years left on our internet contract!"

Before J and I started dating we both joked that we were going to live here forever because we liked it so much. We even joked that we would raise our families here in the two separate bedrooms. I really hope that things work out and we can stay!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

30 Day Shred....Again

It's been a few years since I last tried completing the Jillian Michael's 30 day shred....okay FOUR years!!

Anyway I think there is no time like the present and I did day one today. Feelings....glad I made it through!! I did have to take probably three 5 second breaks especially with those lunch curl-ups. I have no arm strength!! Annnd I was using two 3lb weights :S

I was sweaty and somewhat shaky afterward and may have had the fainting feeling after moving from a sitting to standing position but....it was great and I am happy I did it. Tomorrow will be another story but I want to do 30 days, preferably consecutively but days off are okay too. I think that whenever J goes out to hockey or if he is at work and I have the day off I will do a video. 30 days...I can do it.

I am doing it mostly to tone myself. I wouldn't mind losing maybe 5-6lbs though either! Since the end of summer I have gained close to 10lbs so I wouldn't be opposed to them vanishing. So I'm also trying to eat healthier (actually had a food craving for cottage cheese today, who does that?)

If anyone would like to join me, the first part of the workout can be found HERE