Sunday, February 22, 2009

Tax time ...

For the past few years, I have looked forward to tax time. Neither DH or I have any exemptions on our paychecks, so we both get the full amount taken out. It works like a savings account in a way, because we always end up getting money back at the end of the year. I know we could increase the exemptions and get more take home out of our checks, but this works for us right now (not the greatest savers).

This year, though, is special because we are getting out of credit card debt with our tax return. It is such an awesome feeling to know that starting in April (because I'll get one last statement from these two cards in March for interest) we will be out of that kind of debt. Next is to pay off my car loan ... and that is due to happen in September this year, and finish off my student loan. Our total debt is under $6,000 right now, split about evenly between the car loan and student loan.

I'm also trying to put at least 10% out of each paycheck in savings. I just started this, so we'll see how it goes and I will try to increase it of course, but I think at least 10% can be done, and having no more credit card payments should make this possible too. I've been putting extra on my student loan payments for the past few months too. If you can't guess, I want to get in a better and safer financial situation in a big way.

Saving sounds wonderful, but I do have to admit I have this nagging feeling in the back of my brain that this is just too good to be true. Something is going to go wrong. The washing machine hasn't been sounding great for a long time, but I already know that the repairman would just say it would cost as much to buy a new one, and Tyler's car keeps having new issues, and my computer has been slowing down. And, I want to buy this house (Tyler keeps going back and forth on me). I am going to work on our saving money, but will it be enough? We only have one short year at best to get this going because of the way the loan for this house worked. It would be awful if we had to move out because we couldn't gather enough funds for a down-payment due to semi-unexpected expenses.

So, while I am celebrating our big accomplishment with debt, I still can't help but worry. Isn't that sad? I suppose worrying about financing is just like being a mom and worrying about your kids ... which leads rather nicely into my next topic if you can read the journaling on this layout:

I know that I just finished talking about saving, but this is something that I don't do much of either ... buying things for myself. I've been wearing the same winter coat since the late 90's, and the only spring coat I own is one that my mom gave me last summer that she'd purchased while working on embroidery stuff. So, there is an upcoming challenge about scrapping about something you learned today ... and I scrapped about how sometimes a mom just has to take care of herself. :)

Thanks for reading my babbling!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Published! :)

This is long overdue, but I need to celebrate some pages that have been published!

I submit pages on almost a monthly basis to The Artisan Notebook for consideration for their non-print magazines. The magazines are in PDF format, downloadable, and reasonably priced. I didn't get how cool they were until I actually read one, so if you've never read one, I recommend purchasing just one to see what it's all about. :)

Their recent call was for journaling layouts ... and if you know me, you know that I LOVE to journal. I think it is important to tell the story so that the pictures have meaning. Otherwise, I'd just have a photo album! KWIM (know what i mean)? So, I scrap, and I journal. :)

Here are 3 pages that I submitted that were selected to be in the issue with links underneath for full credits:

One Fell Swoop at Gotta Pixel

Swing, Blake! at Gotta Pixel

Christmas Turds at Gotta Pixel

So woot-woot! I'm very excited and honored to have 3 layouts in this issue!