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About this blog

blogging through our time of unemployment

Entries in this blog

haven't posted in a while

Haven't posted here in a while. Thought I would update, just to be able to come back later and see how things have changed or stayed the same.   We are still in treading water mode. My commissions were cut unexpectedly at work a few months ago (I am in insurance-this was a carrier decision, not my agency's, their income is down, too.) I am doing ok selling, but when your commissions are cut by 2/3, you have to sell three times as much to make the same amount of money. I am moving into other ty

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Frugal victory! (well, kind of)

So we finally had someone out to look at our air-conditioning that had been broken since last fall.   Estimated cost to repair: $800   Final cost: $40   The repairman was my uncle (has his own HVAC company). He had the part we needed and gave it to us. Also added freon/coolant for free. We just paid for his gas to get to our house and we are taking him out to lunch this week.   Feeling pretty thankful. Dodged a bullet with that one and now we have air.     I hope that whatever he

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

update on us, advice welcomed

Wanted to update on us.   I left the fast food job last August and took a job as an insurance agent. I spent most of the summer really tired doing both jobs from June through August while I built up some business. I enjoy insurance. My husband also found a job in the fall after nearly a year unemployed. It pays a little more than half of what he was making before, but the benefits are really good. We are hoping that he may get a raise at his annual review.   My job does not pay very much

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Just a little update on us...

Well, thought I would give a little update on us.   We did end up attending the BIL's fancy wedding in April. It cost us about $600 when all was said and done. There was a little bit of drama but overall we had a nice time. My mother flew in from out of state and watched our kids for two days. We did not end up attending my cousin's wedding because of how much the first one cost.   I am still working in fast food, I enjoy it, but I am very tired most days as I am a closer, so I work from 5 p

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Got a raise!

Only 50 cents an hour because it is fast food, but I'll take it!   They were much nicer about it than I thought and did not hesitate to offer the full amount when I asked for it. They also offered me a full-time position, which I had to gracefully turn down. I just don't have five days a week of closing in me physically with having to get up in the mornings with kids when my husband is job searching.   We have had a lot of turnover lately on the night shift (there is one manager that peo

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Wedding blues...

I just have to vent a little frustration right now so bear with me.   My brother-in-law (husband's brother) is getting married in April in a town about 4 hours from us. My husband is in the wedding party. The tux rental alone is $200.   The hotel they have reserved is over $200 a night (we would need two nights based on having to be at the rehearsal dinner and the time of day of the wedding). It does not offer a free breakfast nor microwaves or fridges in the rooms (historic hotel). There

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Just keep swimming.....just keep swimming...

Well, we seem to be in a holding pattern, circling the airport, lol. I am ready to land!   No real job news for my husband, but he has had several interviews. No offers yet, but I know something will come through. We didn't really expect anything. He has been picking up side jobs here and there, and we are basically living off of our EF plus my part-time job income. It does hurt so bad to transfer the money out of savings every month, though!   I am still at my fast food job, and I am

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Pennies from heaven ...

We have been really blessed this past week with several unexpected windfalls.   1. A friend of ours gave us three coupons for free cat litter (up to $20 EACH!). So we won't have any out of pocket for that, and we JUST ran out.   2. A person who read an article that I wrote for a newsletter said that it really blessed them and sent me a Kroger gift card for $25!   3. We got our electricity bill. It was negative $400! We are not on budget billing, so I guess that no one had been around

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Bartering for food

So, this post is about food that I have gotten for free just for trading work. I helped at a football stadium and helped another friend close her restaurant for the season. I also work at a fast-food place closing at night and get some leftovers there. A lot of this stuff is not healthy so we don't necessarily eat all of it, some we have given away and some has gone to waste sadly but there is only so much junk food that I will let my family eat. We froze what we could.   16 cooked hotdo

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Things are going pretty well, considering...

My fast-food part time job is going pretty well. I am a "closer" (I have never closed before). That translates into 2 hours of scrubbing dishes at the end of the night apparently. I never knew how many dishes a fast-food place could generate! But, it goes by pretty quickly. There is something satisfying about having a job with a definite "finish" and nothing to worry about at home. I never have had that in any of my professional jobs, there was always more and more work to do and worry abo

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

Starting a part-time job tonight

So, tonight I am starting a job at a fast food restaurant for the first time in 15 years! I will be working nights so that my DH can still job search and interview. Wish me luck!   The only bummer part of it is that they will not schedule anyone for more than 25 hours even though I am willing to take as many hours as they will give me. They are not coming right out and saying why but I think it is because of the healthcare stuff. This means they are hiring tons and tons of part time worke

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

4 year old yeast and expired raspberry vinaigrette

More adventures in "use what you have" cooking.   I found some rapid rise yeast that expired in October 2009. Pretty sad that there is something that old in my pantry. I don't typically "do" recipes with yeast because I have had some completely inedible disasters in the past. That is probably why it has been in my pantry so long. My mom is a great cook, but baking yeast breads was the one thing she doesn't do and didn't teach me to do.   I used it to make some pizza dough since I found

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

here goes nothing

Well, DH is out of work and I am just trying to keep it together. Based on his field, our worst case is a job in spring. We have about 4-6 months in savings (barring any emergencies). I want to try to squeeze every last dime out of our budget. Health insurance costs are going to be an issue. I thought I would post random thoughts and recipes that I like as I am squeezing the budget and squeezing it some more.     Yesterday I hit the motherload at our local UGO discount grocery. 32 oz yo

bargainbabe

bargainbabe

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