A refreshing blend of nerd and cool.

Tag: money management

New and Shiny

I like things that are new and shiny.  You might also.  For me, it’s always been about computers and gadgets.  Sure, a shiny new car would be nice, but I can live with my old car.  But the latest computer hardware or home theater setup or tech gadget… Now that’s interesting to me.

I’ve noticed, however, less of a desire lately to chase those new shinies, mostly because of our financial journey.  Ironically, I now have the savings to buy a new television to replace the 20” loaner I’m using because ours broke, but I’m not really dying for it.  It would be nice, but it’s not essential.

There’s something that happens when we get control of our financial situation: We want material things less.  Sue says it’s because we focus on our blessings more than our wantings. I tend to agree with her.

Here’s how I know I’ve changed: There’s a new iPhone coming out in about a month. And I really don’t have a desire to go out and get it. I’m also not feeling bad about getting mine when I did instead of waiting for a new and better model. Because there is always a new and better thing coming.

Tax Deadline

For most people, the tax deadline is April 15.  If you’re like me, however, you’re well versed in the world of extensions.  We haven’t filed our taxes on time in eight or nine years. 

I kept telling myself that there were lots of good reasons for it.  The bottom line, however, is that we just didn’t stay on top of our finances and consequently weren’t able to get things together in time and get them to the tax person.

As part of the Good Sense course we took, I decided to set myself a personal goal of getting our taxes in on time this year.  My new tax people (more on that another day maybe), suggest a March 1 deadline to get them the materials they need to prepare my taxes on time.  I am now only one piece of information away from completing the packet, which I expect to get today, then it’s off to the tax people. 

I’m hoping for good news on our taxes this year, but fear it won’t be pretty (another long story, related to the first one).

Funny Story About My Taxes: I’m having my previous year’s taxes reviewed as part of switching to this new tax service.  I spent about 30 minutes looking for my 2008 tax returns, getting increasingly frustrated with my inability to find every other year since I started filing on my own in 1999.  I had everything I’d ever done except the one I needed.  It was then that I remembered that “last year” is not 2008 where taxes are concerned.  “Last year” is actually 2007, which Jaime had found much earlier in the search.  Maybe I’m losing my mind…

170

That’s how many DVDs we own.  It’s also how many days until our little one is expected to arrive (Nov 29, 2008).  (Longish story ahead, skip to the bullets for some good deals!)

Jaime and I are getting ready for the baby, and one of our family goals is for Jaime to stay home with baby.  We’ve never had to be extremely disciplined financially because we’ve been DINKs until now.  In order to go down to one income, we’re taking Sue Whited’s Good Sense Course.  She’s agreed to do it for us in a 1 on 2 setting since we can’t be at the class when it’s offered on Sunday mornings during the education hour (which, btw, you should take next time it’s offered).

One of the principles for good money management is to pay off all your debts as quick as possible.  They suggest living the Spartan lifestyle, spending as little as possible and even selling off possessions to help get out of debt faster.  It’s good advice.

Inspired by another Sue, we’ve decided to kill two birds with one stone.  We’re getting rid of around 90 DVDs.  Jaime got to pick 10 DVDs to save, I picked 50, and the baby picked 19 (that’s how many children’s DVDs we own).  That’s more than half the collection I’ve spent 10 years building.  The MSRP (which we didn’t even come close to paying) for the ones we’re getting rid of is $2,559.04.  That’s 12.86 iPhone 3Gs, but who’s counting… 

So here’s the deal: The 90 we’re getting rid of are available for purchase to blog readers until Sunday, June 22.  Some details:

  • I don’t endorse all of the movies as wholesome flix.  Some date back to my college years, when I was less discerning.  Others I deemed acceptable for me to watch, but don’t necessarily recommend for others.
  • All DVDs are in good condition to the best of my knowledge.  If it doesn’t play on your player, I’ll refund the money.
  • All DVDs cost $5 with a few exceptions:
    • Spider-Man 3, Shawshank Redemption, X-Men 3 — $10 each, unopened.
    • The Office, Season 1 — $20, unopened
    • Alias Seasons 1-3 — $25 each
    • Die Hard Ultimate Box (Movies 1-3) — $15
    • Seinfeld, Season 1-2 — $15
    • Jurassic Park 1 and 2 — $10, sold as a box-set.
  • First come, first served for purchasing DVDs.  Email me or leave it in the comments.
  • I’m not shipping movies.
  • I’ll deliver movies to Cleveland, Ohio around July 4 for anyone purchasing from that area.  It’s up to you to meet me somewhere convenient for the hand-off.
  • People in the Buffalo area can pick them up from First Trinity or by arrangement with me.
  • Movies not sold by June 22 will go on Craig’s List at $8/movie with the same exceptions as above.  You can still purchase them after that date at the blog rate if you identify yourself as a blog reader.
  • All the money we get (hopefully between $500-$750) will go towards eliminating one of our school loans, whichever is lower when we go to make the payment.

And now, the DVDs that are available:

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