Sunday, December 16, 2007

Family loans and stress.

My Family hung out yesterday and the first thing my Mom said to me was, "I decided to make that loan from last year a gift so don't worry about paying it back, ok?"

No, Mom, not ok.

Backstory: I borrowed $1500 from the parents last January when I moved into my first apartment. Little did they know, ALL five of my credit cards were maxed out. I also owed another family member $1700, but I paid that back this June.

I have borrowed money from them before, but not this much. I know it's a lousy excuse, but I find it hard to talk with them about payment plans and deadlines because they are really laid back and say, "Oh, just wait til you have it and give it to us all at once. No rush."

I was really just trying to be smart and throw my money at the high interest rate stuff first and then pay them back next summer and add some interest or give them a thank you gift with it also. I'm not sure what my parents are thinking, but I'm guessing that they think I'm in bad shape and I feel like a jerk!

I got my mom to agree to "revisit" the five years!

I'm really uncomfortable with this whole thing and think that maybe I should just pay my family next week, push my credit card payoff back by two months, pick up shifts at the second job, and try to put as few xmas purchases as possible on plastic.

Suggestions? Would you let someone "forgive and forget" a loan?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

I'm dreaming of a Light Christmas.

Here's the breakdown of my "'Tis better to give than receive"s:


The parents have declined gifts this year. They just want me to pay them back. Ouch.

My siblings and I are all pinching pennies so we've e-mailed each other short lists (with links to online retailers!) of a few gifts under $50 that we'd like. I've got a bro and a sis to shop for- that's $100.

Close friends: Crafts, crafts, crafts. $100 for 6 or so.

Not-so-close friends: We have a Yankee Swap. $25 limit. I hope I find something under $20.

The kids in my life: $30. I only babysit for two, but I really love shopping for them.

Coworker: $15. She loves chocolate. I'm sure I'll get some in return.

That's $265. I'm picking up a shift at the second job tomorrow. And the day after xmas. and hopefully a few more before the new year...

I heart my friends.

A few friends and I gathered (from the various ends of the earth) in NYC for the weekend. It was exactly what I needed (minus the extraordinary hangover). I had good laughs, good food, good culture, and (one too many) good drinks.

At some point during the haze of the weekend, one of my friends looked at me and said, "You look really sucessful." I love those moments, when I'm in my $7 clearance H&M dress and my $50 clearance coat and I feel desperately in need of a haircut I can't afford, and someone says something that makes me feel like I have the whole world fooled.

I told her that I am sucessful, but only in the sense that I'm living super cheap and throwing over 50% of my income at my debt and I can finally breathe when I bust out my check book.

Then I took my $15 Greyhound bus back to my chilly apartment and made myself some ramen.

Friday, December 7, 2007

My self-control is straining to keep me from buying this little number:

Sigh, Elie Tahari at Nordstrom. one hundred and ninety eight dollars. I'd try to get it as a christmas gift, but that would ruin my dreams of wearing it to every holiday party between now and then. I will not buy this. I will not buy this. I will not buy this.

The holidays are coming...

I have a nasty cold. I've spent a bit on tissues and soup, but I'm too sick to buy anything else, so it might be good for my budget!

It's Payday! I had to pay a few bills today, but won't be putting any extra toward the debt until the holidays are over.

My presents are coming along nicely. I'm a bit over budget on some of my projects, but alot of the things I needed to get were for tools that I'll use again and not on materials that I'm giving away.

Debating whether or not to pick up some extra shifts at the second job. I have my eye on a new guy, which might make things easier if I run into the ex. I'm scheduled for the day after Christmas, so if that isn't too awkward, I'll start working on weekends again. I'm so lucky that they are flexible. Of course, they have soo much work and backlog that they can't really turn me away!