Thursday, February 17, 2011

Free Address Labels!

Shutterfly, a company I love, is giving away some of their ultra-cool address lables.
Enter promo code at checkout: HTRB-3PNE-P3WB-YY0XJ7
Offer ends Feb 23

Thursday, February 10, 2011

General Thoughts - Thursday Thinking?

Seems like everyday has some kind of "theme" around the blogosphere... How do you feel about "Thursday Thinking", hmmm?

I'm thinking about one of the comments re: Financial Peace and investment debt. Dave's plan definitely supports investment debt. He does recommend you pay down debt as soon as you can, to put the interest savings in your own pocket. HOWEVER, he also is very aware that you have to borrow to invest in large ticket items. So, he's pro-investment, he counts houses in that category. Then again, I've not heard him in recent years, not sure how he feels about houses with the current downturn in real estate. I wouldn't be surprised if he's in a "buy" mood personally - just think about all that CHEAP business real estate out there, and he's a very wealthy man these days.

Thinking about our kids...
- There is a really, really wonderful lady and her husband that are "kin" to my family by marriage. They are so sweet to our kids and they remember them with gifts at birthdays and major holidays. My kiddos unfortunately only have 1 set of grandparents living - hubby's Dad recently passed on, and I never met my MIL - she passed several years ago. So, I've been thinking about broaching the topic of "adopted" grandparents. Does that sound odd? I just so wish that my kids had another set of older-generation people to love on them. I don't think I would consider it, but these folks have no grandkids of their own, and I'm guessing they never will at this point. It's sad - they'd make the greatest grandparents, and my kids need grandparents. Seems like a match to me...

- Miss M. is starting to want to sit up while being held. It's really cool! She's all about trying to hold herself upright. :) She's still not much into playing with toys and such, but she will bat at hanging rattles if you'll hold them for her.

- Jim is a trip as always. He's always coming up with the neatest things to say.

We were in a parking lot and Jim pointed out that there were lots of "big buildings and stores" - it was a strip mall.
Me: What kinds of stores are there?
Jim: Food Store
Me: What do you get at a Food Store?
Jim: Groceries!

Me: What other kinds of stores are there?
Jim: French Fry Store
Me: What do you get at a Food Store?
Jim: Hamburgers and Chicken Nuggets!

Me: What other kinds of stores are there?
Jim: Happens Store
Me: A Happens store? What do you get at a Happens store?
Jim: Happens

Me: Really? OK, when would you go to a Happens store?
Jim: When you've had an accident. You go get Happens.

Me: You get Happens, when you have an accident?
OHHHHH! Accidents Happen!!! You are sooo wonderfully Wonderful Jim!

- Ms M has been getting a bit of a flat spot on one side of her head. I'm quite familiar with Torticollis, since Jim went through some issues with it. His head is actually not very round. So I've been working on keeping Ms. M's head round by being diligent with moving her position/head/propping her/etc since she was born.

Week before last I picked her up from her cradle and found that her head was very suddenly quite mis-shapen. I freaked out a little. Ok, a lot. It was like having 3 months of effort yanked out from under me.

I stormed into the room with hubby and told him we needed to talk. I was soooo mad, and needed to address it with the daycare - they were obviously leaving her to sleep in one position ALL the time. I had told them to watch her and it wasn't happening, obviously.

I won't get into all the details... sufficed to say, the daycare now has an action plan for how to take care of Ms M. They now know more about Torticollis. As I understand it the Director shared some pics around to show what happens if babies aren't managed for this condition.

Do know, this condition isn't one that you are taught to watch for, and I know plenty of people (including me) had their kiddos get pretty flat-headed before realizing there was a real issue. However, I was shocked that our daycare hasn't ever dealt with it. Too weird. Then again, maybe that just means they don't let their babies lay around untended too much. We'll see.

For All My Geeky Girlfriends!

This is our form of "being Martha". Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I've Been Very Weird Lately

I JUST remembered something WONDERFUL happened this week, and I didn't blog about it...

Thrifty Decor Chick reminded me with her post... Gah! I can't believe I didn't tell you guys!!

Have you heard of Dave Ramsey ? If you haven't, you might want to. He says people who don’t have debt are WEIRD. That’s what he says. “Debt is normal…be weird.”

So, you can say I'm being somewhat weird... And I'm so glad of it!


YES, I really did. I hit SEND and that sucker was GONE! BLAMO!!!!!!

I read Financial Peace years ago. My cousin followed it with her family - Success! My brother follows it with his family - Succcess!! So I started following it gently about 4 years ago - I had about $5ok in debt that I can remember (not including the house). I'm not proud of that fact, I'm really not. Then again, my salary was pretty great so I wasn't toooo worried.

Idiot me - young idiot me, right? That kind of thinking is what I was up against. Ugh.

Well... I talked through the Financial Peace ground rules with hubby and we started doing it. Snicker. Snicker.

No really... Be serious...

Within the 1st 2 years of the plan we knocked out ALL of our car loans, and all but 1 credit card each. When we had Jim we had a harder time paying things of quickly, but all of our work bringing down our debts allowed us to pay for the non-covered portion of an IVF, all the hospital bills, and a GREAT daycare and still have $ coming into our savings each month.

In 2009 (the year after Jim was born) I managed to pay 1/2 down on a brand-new car.. Yes, in cash. You can still do that, you know, pay cash. :) I have a 2 yr old car and I owe only $5,000 on it now. Really.

FTR - I had to have a car after Jim was born due to safety and medical reasons. I searched and shopped and waited and searched until I found JUST the right deal on a new car. That new car was only $1 - 2 K more than the next 2 yr models that were selling used, so it made sense to buy new, but Dave (the FP guy) would have said to buy used. We disagree, it's OK, I still love him.

Oh, and in 2010, when there was no insurance for our IVF, and they told me to pay up front. I wrote them a big fat check, paid in full. Done. Yep. No bills from that either.

OK, so now I have a student loan to focus on, a car to finish paying off (I pay way more than the min each month), and I'm done. Done with debt, other than the house. If all goes well, that is. Oh, and you naysayers out there are thinking "It doesn't always go well, you could loose a job, yada yada...). YEP! That's why the Financial Peace plan starts with building your emergency fund. So you have cash money in the bank, just in case. No, it won't keep me afloat for long. I realize that, but it just might be enough to get me to the other shore of a menacing jobless sea of sorrow.

I AM SO EXCITED - and PROUD of myself. I really am.

pat. pat. pat. I might need PT after this, but I'm glad to be patting my own back for once!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Twitter Anyone?!?!

I am trying to catch up to you guys on twitter, but everyone I know has their tweets protected... So, how do I let you guys know I'm on?

I'm lost. For a REAL geek this is humiliating. (hangs head in shame)

Will someone let me into the club? I promise I'll play nice! :)

I'm @Nearlydawn as if it wasn't something you'd guess...

Thursday, February 3, 2011

What's The Deal?

I have a few things I'd like to understand better...

Why is it that I can't seem to stop reading blogs about babyloss? Why must I know the details of these poor people's stories? Why?

I just don't get what is in me that makes me go of on tangets that I KNOW are about babies lost during pregnancy or just after. I don't know what it is. Is it a fear that I'll loose Miss M? Is it some sort of odd tourture? Is it a "What if?" issue for me that never was resolved when I lost my daughter at 15wks gestation last year?

Sometimes I think it is because I am still so scared that I will loose Jim or more likely Miss M. That fear never seems to leave me, and I think it is more present now that I've experienced a mid-term loss.

Right now, Miss M is sleeping peacefully in her rocker, right beside me, and I am crying uncontrollably over someone's loss. I am living their pain. Why?

I think my time online reading blogs is growing shorter as a result of these painful forays. I know that about 1/2 the time I get online I'm going to find that a friend or one of their friends needs my support due to a loss... I wonder if I'm starting to wear out emotionally. Maybe not so much "wear out", but maybe the borders are getting blurred between my life and all those out there hurting. I think I'm internalizing their pain and their stories.

Does anyone else do this? Do you have thoughts about it?