<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Home > I'll get there, but where is there?

I'll get there, but where is there?

January 4th, 2015 at 04:58 pm

Yesterday I had the sick feeling I'm horribly behind financially. That must be a progression from "everybody dies young in my family so why bother saving." The feeling squirmed in as I listened to a woman talk of her spouse's retirement, her planned purchase of a second vehicle, college savings. I have a second vehicle but I wouldn't take it out when it's 2 degrees Celsius. Looking at GnuCash and my budget, I see maybe $150 leftover per month. I'll feel much better when I can eliminate one debt. Someone I know is planning to pay off her car loan this year, although she is considering borrowing from her 401(k). I may just sell some CDs if I feel like joining her in her car loan freedom.

Something I'd like to save up for is a delayed 20th anniversary vacation. I didn't get one last year. We were supposed to go to Hawaii this Christmas, and that didn't happen either. When the net worth improves by $2000 I'll start making reservations at places in the Gulf Islands and on Vancouver Island. Fortunately I don't have to go far to have an "exotic island getaway." My dad was married to his second wife for 22 years; my mother didn't make 20 years with any of her three husbands, and neither did my brother. I did surprise the woman in the first paragraph that I had been married for that long: I hope it's because I don't look like someone who's been married for twenty years.

Maybe start buying foreign currency so I can save a little bit. Maybe convince the spouse to put some aside, if there's a match by employer. I did put $100 into my kid's college account but can't think of what equity to purchase with it. Maybe an ETF with a few more hundred dollars.

I have started exercising, however gently and sporadically. It's the building of a habit that matters, right? I did sit-ups today, started "bouncing" and shoulder shrugs, from Chinese Healing Exercises while watching movies, restarted tracing my meridians. Everyday I had been walking at least a mile, until today, so now I'm bouncing, trying for 1000. I think adrenal exhaustion might be a large part of my expanded waistline. Seeing connections between my eyesight and adrenals and blood pressure and caffeine and adipose. I suppose if I didn't have any hope of a happy golden age there's always the combo of energy drinks and alcohol to speed up the blood clots to take me out. Honestly, I don't know why someone would have that combo at all, let alone regularly enough when one's been hospitalized for blood pressure like 240/120mmHg and has sky-high creatine phosphokinase levels from muscle tissue damage stemming from surgeries on TWO shoulders, but if you ever thought "yeah, my four-year-old doesn't need me and I don't need to see him/hr grow up" or tune out people like your doctor who advises you to cut out the energy drinks because you know everything, I suppose Monster or 5HrPerformance plus a beer can make up for years of bad financial planning. Just make sure you do more than tell your sister you're PLANNING to make a will, and go make a will.

9 Responses to “I'll get there, but where is there?”

  1. VS_ozgirl Says:

    To answer the title of your post- I'll get there but where is there, when you speak about wondering if you are horribly behind financially- do you think you are doing the best you can do? If you try to make the best choices you can and are relatively happy with what you have at the moment while having options for a good financial future (good being determined by what you are capable of achieving, not the Joneses and the people next door), then you are there. And if you're not there, do what you can to get there. To me it's as simple as that. (Of course somebody else may have a different point of view!)

  2. tabs Says:

    GnuCash! How do you like it?

    Also, what currencies do you have in mind and why?

  3. PauletteGoddard Says:

    @Tabs I don't like GnuCash as much as I like YNAB. Lifehacker.com's poll indicated Mint.com was the favourite among readers, GnuCash being fourth, but I went searching in Ubuntu Software Center for "personal finance" and GnuCash was the best I could find. I've looked at the Tutorial and Help Guide a few times and think the instructions are skeletal for someone with limited accounting knowledge. My Mortgage Loan numbers are not looking the way I want them to: transfers to escrow account should not inflate my mortgage loan balance; plus, I had been prepaying some principal on my mortgage, and getting the exact Principal and Interest monthly portion means making my outstanding balance larger than it is. TD Ameritrade keeps telling me my PIN is incorrect, when it isn't, when I try downloading transactions. TD Ameritrade has OFX Direct Connect instructions for Microsoft Money version 2006 and earlier, and Intuit's Quicken 2005 and earlier, and either buried or deleted its page of IT Online help phone numbers. I do like that, with GnuCash, I can download transactions fine from my credit union. Also, one of my DRPs changed its ticker symbol on January 1st, but Yahoo! USA Finance, the data repository for quotes, doesn't yet recognize it as of January 5th, so I don't get correct quotes. This is a 2.5 star operation for usability. Do you know if Schwab plays better with GnuCash?

    @VS_ozgirl: I might not be doing the best I can. I am not getting help from the person who brings in the money. When I attend my informal debt group we track the outstanding balances we want to track, and I'm the only one who tracks my mortgage, because I'm the only one who doesn't have a credit card balance, and it's psychologically soothing to see that a four-digit figure (including principal from car loan) of progress is being made each month. It may all be that the grass is on the other side.

  4. tabs Says:

    I'm surprised you're on Linux (since so few people in general are). Any particular reason why, besides price?

    Have you tried to run YNAB via WINE?

    I have no idea how well Schwab plays with GnuCash.

  5. PauletteGoddard Says:

    @Tabs: Linux is the language used to support multitudes of servers and mobile platforms. Instead of contracting here and there at MS, I thought I'd relearn XML and go learn Hadoop and Linux so I'd get a full-time job in data processing or data support that requires staying within 100 miles of a major data silo, and not outsourced to Mumbai or Beijing so some sociopath Microsoft manager who can't give me a reference gets a 4 from her higher-up for reducing costs.

  6. tabs Says:

    Hahah another witty Paulette response.

    As a hobbyist, I love linux (and xBSD) as well. In fact, the only reason why I still use Windows today is PC gaming.

  7. PauletteGoddard Says:

    Well, it's truth. To be honest, Tabs, I have learned there's a world of difference, GnuCash aside, in quality of help from Linux users and Microsoft Help. Linux users will gladly share what they know about solving a problem a beginner has, partly out of glee of knowing the answer and partly out of glee of being helpful, and Microsoft will post an answer like "we are no longer supporting -----" or a solution that does not exactly meet what I need or a solution that requires some Premium membership to MSDN.

    I have a dual-boot, and use Windows for AcrossLite, now that my spouse has subscribed to NYTimes puzzles, and my Savings Bond Calculator application. MS Office is also useful in combination with Avery-Dennison labels and tabs for printing, and for scanning things. I have to use Windows for streaming video and audio from the public library. Wine doesn't seem to do it for me (who knew I'd ever type THAT sentence out?) for the latter.

    I got a Raspberry Pi for Christmas and perhaps because it's mainly aimed at children, and possibly other beginners, I have found the instructions for setting up very clear and complete. I'll be setting up Tor Browser for an OnionPi as explained in a Make magazine article, and I look forward to using the RaspberryPi for OpenVPN so I can expand the realms of my subversive wickedness, beyond learning PHP, Python, and relearning mySQL.

  8. tabs Says:

    I'm not sure if Pi is actually aimed at children.... But that is certainly a good platform to DIY your own projects.

    I've tried Tor, and while I liked the concept, I found it to be too slow to use regularly relative to my security needs (unless the NSA has a serious need to track fruggies tracking their pennies).

    OpenVPN is also a good idea that I can't use that even at work, and have no need for it at home.

    PHP is fun but I don't really do web designs / backend database stuff (a la mySQL).

    I love Python though. Always have. That's my go-to when I can't accomplish something in shell scripts.

    That said, I suppose all this is for the sake of learning and fun eh? I really should get back into it myself. It's certainly a frugal hobby if nothing else.

    But hooray for finding someone else who is into this stuff.

  9. PauletteGoddard Says:

    Yes, hooray for finding shared hobbies and interests among fellow bloggers! I love that about SavingAdvice.com!

    What do you do with Python? The shell/interpreter on the RaspberryPi for Python is IDLE, and that amuses me.

Leave a Reply

(Note: If you were logged in, we could automatically fill in these fields for you.)
Will not be published.

* Please spell out the number 4.  [ Why? ]

vB Code: You can use these tags: [b] [i] [u] [url] [email]