A blog about spending wisely in your twenties, with advice on everything from cooking to saving money on gas; how to teach yourself to save money instead of spending it, traveling without breaking the bank, and much more.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

No Carpet Jokes, Please

Why anyone buys anything new is beyond me. We got our Kenmore microwave for $7.50. We got a wicked sweet coffee table for $15.  There are folks who might spend upwards of $500 or more on just those two items alone.

But we also bought a rug at a fancy furniture place for $80. It was the display model, so we had it cleaned for $49. We've got hardwood floors, so a rug was necessary. We nabbed ourselves a $400 rug for a total of $129. Which is a hell of a lot for a rug, but not a whole hell of a lot for a rug that makes your feet feel oh, so happy. 

Here's the thing, I can see laying out $129 for a really nice rug, maybe even $150.  A good 5x8 rug. But who on EARTH would throw down $400 for the same thing I got for $129? I "saved" $271 on our rug. I use quotation marks because I didn't save it. I don't have $271 in savings.

But we do have a rug that makes our toes happy.

Another way we might have gotten a super nice rug - and I should have thought of this, but the rug matched the micro-suede couches my now in-laws bought us for Christmas and I couldn't resist - another way we could have nabbed a nice rug would have been to call up a few dry cleaners and ask them if they had any abandoned rugs lying around. Sometimes people drop them off for cleaning and never pick them up, or they can't pay for them, hence, abandoned rugs. Most dry cleaners will donate abandoned items to Goodwill or to other charities - but if you call and ask you could score a sweet rug for free.

Or for the cost of the original owners' dry cleaning, anyway.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

I Have Time for this Now, Right?

Since my last post, I took 19 units worth of classes, nabbed a job as an accounting assistant, and I got legally married. And I moved.

Observations on Each:

(1) 19 units. Do NOT try this while holding down a job of any kind. Well, maybe a 4 hours a week at Starbucks type job - but certainly not a job that requires 35+ hours that you need to make rent. Also don't try to take 19 units and work while attempting to have any sort of meaningful relationship with anyone ever.

(2) New Job! I'm the right arm of the CFO at my company. I work during the day. I have weekends off. I miss the casual atmosphere at In N Out Burger, but I don't miss the cheese burns or the closing shifts.  

(3) Legally married. Between my new job and the fact that Fiance -  I mean, Husband - is on salary now, we feel rich. Of course, we got legally married so that we could live together in order to save money to fund the big wedding in June. (We are both just old fashioned enough that the idea of shacking up landed pretty firmly on that side of Not Cool.) So we're legally married, and saving for our wedding.  Maybe not at all romantic, but completely practical as far as we're concerned.

They say that it's not what you make, it's what you spend. With our combined income and somewhat lowered expenses we are coming out far, far ahead of what I'm used to - which, if you'll recall is paycheck-to-paycheck at a burger joint. We're by no means rich, but we make just enough to feel like we can blow our cash. We try not to, and we're pretty good about not blowing huge wads of money on useless crap...except when it comes to comic books - which I have taken to rationalizing as a quality of life expense. Being frugal enough in other areas (ie, not having cable TV) to be able to afford a comic book or two every paycheck with our allowance? WORTH IT. We're 24 and 26 years old, if anyone's wondering.

I've also always theorized that this frugality stuff works much better with two people - I'm quickly learning that it does. More on that as the weeks go by, but for now thanks for reading this after such a long silence!