Sunday, May 20, 2012

I Really Have no Business Blogging

Really. I am quite bad at this. I can't post for a week straight, most posts are %100 useless and just written for the sake of being written and my writing style is actually quite bad.

To fix this I'm going to post less.  Much less.  I'm going to actually try to improve my englishing skills and write well thought out posts and maybe, just maybe, I'll include research

So that's all I'm writing today.  I'm going to try to be less shite at this by putting the same amount of time in, just put all that time towards one good post rather than 7 bad ones.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Buses

Since finishing school the single biggest immediate change has been the lack of a student bus pass. It was the sort of thing you didn't really appreciate it when you had it, but when it's gone you miss it a lot. Luckily my girlfriend had a bunch of fare savers from before a price hike so I can get a packet of 10 for $20. But still, it's weird having to think about where I'm going, how many zones I am traveling and whether I'll need to use another transfer on the way back.

Like most things right now, using the bus is a medium level of frugality, which is enhanced by using fare savers (and enhanced again by using cheaper fare savers). However, I will not be able to give myself a "high" frugality rating in transportation until I am biking everywhere.

In additional money saving news, I phoned up the National Loan Service people (the guys who administer my student loan) and got them to give me the floating interest rate (prime + 2.5) instead of the fixed (prime + 5). I also figured out that I don't need to follow a repayment plan, I can just throw money in as I see fit. My plan right now is to get my loan (20k) paid off within 12 months. Do you think I can do it?

Spending May 10th:
  • $3.75 - Bus fare. Frugality level - Low
  • $2.18 - Coffee. Frugality level - Low
  • $3.75 - Bus fare. Frugality level - Low
  • $20.00 - Fare savers. Frugality level - High
  • $43.02 - Mother's Day lunch for Mom Frugality level - Low
  • $84.81 - Congratulatory dinner for girlfriend. Frugality level - Low

Spending May 11th:
  • $7.45 - Pizza from Uncle Fatih's (delicious). Frugality level - Low
  • $26.52 - Haircut. Frugality level - Low
  • $7.11 - Latte + Biscotti Frugality level - Low

Eating May 10th:
  • Burger + Ceasar Salad (lunch). Health level - Low
  • Beer x3 (various). Health level - Low
  • Chocolates (snack). Health level - Low
  • Arctic Cod + appy + dessert (dinner). Health level - Low
  • Orange (snack). Health level - High

Eating May 11th:
  • 1/2 a dessert (lunch). Health level - Low
  • Meat Slop (lunch). Health level - High
  • Pretzels + PB (snack). Health level - Medium
  • 3 Pizza Slices + Pop (dinner). Health level - Low
  • Biscotti (snack). Health level - low

Eventually I'll be more frugal and healthy. Eventually...

Weight @ 8:22pm - 221.2lbs

Thursday, May 10, 2012

100th Post

So I definitely considered posting yesterday, but I didn't have the energy to do it so I just skipped it. I wanted to make the 100th post good you know?

Today's Frugal discussion is for all those people who love beer on two levels (it tastes good and it gets you drunk) but have not figured how to reconcile this love with being frugal. At the end of the day, there are 4 options of varying levels of frugality for this:
  1. Worst Case: You drink at the bar or club
  2. Reasonable Case: You buy beer and drink it at home
  3. Money Conscious Case: You brew beer from a kit
  4. Frugal choice: You brew beer from scratch

Brewing beer from scratch is what I did today and it was pretty damn awesome. All told it took about 4 hours, $26 in ingredients and produced about 24L of beer. For perspective cheap beer where I'm from costs $8/2L. If you brew from scratch you can make a much finer brew (but you have to do it right). If it takes 4 hours, it works out to an hourly wage of $17.50 an hour ( 24L * $4/L = $96. 96 - 26 = 70. 70/4 = 17.5).

Granted, this isn't taking into account some other factors like the time taken two weeks from now to continue the brewing process as well as the cost of running the stove/buying propane and running fridges. But, it is by FAR the most frugal way to drink, especially because you can get such a high quality beer out of it. It just takes some care and attention.

To my knowledge you can do the same thing for wine, but I know much less about the overall quality of the resulting product.

Oh yes, and setup cost for the beer is about $150, so after a couple batches you are back into the black!

Spending May 8th:
  • $7.03 - Toothbrush and Floss. Frugality level - Low
  • $4.14 - Coffee w/ Roommate. Frugality level - Low
  • $100 - New dining room set. Frugality level - Medium

Spending May 9th:
  • $30.00 - Pizza. Frugality Level - Low

Eating May 8th:
  • Dried Mangos (snack). Health level - High
  • Pasta + Sauce (lunch). Health level - Medium
  • 1 Pizza slice (snack). Health level - Low
  • 2 Oranges (snack). Health level - High
  • Pasta + Sauce + Cheese (dinner). Health level - Medium

Eating May 9th:
  • 1 Orange + 1 Apple (breakfast). Health level - High
  • Pasta + sauce (lunch). Health level - Medium
  • 1 Medium Pizza (dinner). Health level - Low
  • 5 beers (snack). Health level - Low

On the plus side, I kept riding my bike around. After that long 20km ride the other day my ass hurts and my legs are sore (very different sensations let me tell you).

I'm slowly getting a good hold on this whole "real life" thing. Crazy, no?

Weight @ 12:25 AM - 225lbs - :( I guess that's my punishment for all the beer + pizza.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Glorious Ultimate

Well I didn't wake up quite when I wanted to today, I overslept. Not happy about that. On the plus side, I spent a solid 8 hours working on my project today. From here I biked to an Ultimate game, played my heart out and biked home. Tomorrow I plan on waking up around 8am so that I can really kill the day. Work my ass off and take another chunk out of this project. There isn't much time left and you gotta make hay while the sun shines, right?

Now that all the painting is done the place looks pretty awesome. Makes all the hard work worth it. Tomorrow I'll be buying 1 of the last two pieces of furniture that we'll be getting for the place.
This post is reasonably incoherent. I am really goddamn tired.

Spending:
  • $4.37 - Coffee and a scone from Starbucks. Frugality level - Low
  • $9.49 - Pre made pizza. Frugality level - Low
  • $26.43 - Groceries - Apricots, Chocolate, Pasta Sauce, Pasta, Juice, Cheese, Sausage, Apple, Oranges. Frugality level - Medium
Eating:
  • Half a premade veggy pizza (lunch). Health Level - Medium
  • Chocolate (snack). Health level - Low
  • Pasta + Sauce (dinner). Health level - Medium
In general I find that my rating of these things is pretty arbitrary. It's hard to say "high" on anything because most times it could be a BIT better.

Oh well, tomorrow will be a great day.

Weight at 11:42pm - 222.0lbs.

Painting Touchups

So it seems that drunk people don't do the best job of painting. When I woke up this morning it was clear that we had done a half terrible job. The bathroom and kitchen of our place needed severe re-doing. It was embarrassing.

That was my day, patching up the entire place, and then rearranging my room. It took all day. The best part about all day activities is that they are quite nice to the wallet.

Eatings:
  • 1/2 a 3 Meat Frozen Pizza (lunch). Health Level - Low
  • Leftover chinese food (dinner). Health Level - Low
  • 3 beer. Health Level - Low
Wow, I am a goddamned inspiration for healthy eaters everywhere.

Spending:
  • $36.71 - Electricity Bill. Frugality Level - Medium
We can definitely get our electricity bill lower. It's one of the goals of the new place to be much more energy and consumption conscious. Less eating out, less leaving lights on. Less waste in general.

Weight @ 12:11 AM - 224.4 lbs.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Painting Day

So we spent the entire day painting my new place. I am a tired.

Frugal cause our landlord bought the point and we borrowed most of the supplies. Non-frugal cause we had to bribe our friends with beer and pizza. Long long day of painting.

Spent: $60 on chinese food Night.

Ate: pizza and chinese food and beer.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Lazy Friday

Most of the day was spent with half reading/half hanging out with the lady friend. Overall it was pretty good except I recently made some decisions she wasn't the biggest fan of. I'm really split on how to handle the situation. Probably shouldn't get into it here, but needless to say, it's causing me some stress. God damnit.

Anyway, didn't do anything Frugal today. Didn't do anything healthy. I might be going for a run later but I don't know for how long. As usual I'll try for a decent distance/time but I really don't think my heart's in it today.

Can you tell I'm in a shitty mood? Bah.

 Spending:
  • $2.52 - a muffin from Blenz, bought me a place to sit essentially. Frugality level - Low
  • $42.14 - lunch + 2 beers for the lady friend and I at a restaurant. Frugality level - Low
Eating:
  • Open faced breakfast sandwich - whole grain bread, tomatoes, cheese, egg (breakfast). Health level - High
  • Pretzels + Peanut Butter (breakfast). Health level - Medium but oh so delicious
  • 1/2 Muffin (snack). Health level - Low
  • Greek Chicken Wrap (lunch). Health level - Medium
  • Ceasar Salad (lunch). Health level - Low
  • 1/6 of a burger (lunch). Health level - Low
  • Carrots (dinner). Health level - High
  • Mixed Veggies (dinner). Health level - High
  • 3 Beer (various). Health level - Low
Receipt keeping is going pretty well. So far I've saved 5/7 or so? I mean, I just started. Slowly getting the hanging of it.

Weight at 8:59pm - 221.8 lbs.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

New Places are Awesome

Recently I moved two stories straight up. The main advantage of this is that I am now shorter than my apartment everywhere - not just select parts of my room and the living room. This change has come with a proportional change in rent, but I think it's gonna be okay. Although it's far from the Frugal choice, I spent 3 years slouching in the shower. It's a much needed upgrade, let me tell you.

Didn't do anything amazingly frugal today, hell I probably messed up with one of my purchases.

Today's expenses are below:
  • $7.02 - A pre-made sandwich and two Babybel cheese wheels. Frugality level - Low
  • $5.01 - Strawberries (on sale), broccoli and a Coffee Crisp. Frugality level - Medium
  • $99.37 - Canvas, paint and brushes for some art my roommate and I are going to make. Cheaper than buying art, not frugal compared to not having art. On the plus side, I bought the canvas at 50% off, the paint at 40% off and everything (including sale items) had an extra 25% taken off. Saved about $45 by buying on sale and with coupon. Frugality level - Low
Eating today was also not the best:
  • 2 Tablespoons peanut butter (breakfast). Health level - High
  • 2 Babybel cheese wheels (lunch). Health level - Low
  • Turkey sandwich (lunch). Health level - Medium
  • A Coffee Crisp (snack). Health level - Low
  • 1/2 a head of broccoli (dinner). Health level - High
  • 6.5 chicken strips (dinner). Health level - Medium
Well, that's about it for now. I'm going to start keeping all of my receipts. Combined with this tracking of what I spend, I'll always be able to find the lowest price I've paid for something.

Weight @ 11:22pm - 220 lbs.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

I'm Back!

Alright, so chances are slim that anybody REALLY gives a damn, but I'm going to start blogging again. The main theme of frugality is going to remain but there's going to be a lot more about health and eating habits. Also, there will be a lot more micromanagement. I'm going to post every financial interaction (please don't steal my identity) and everything I eat. This will serve as a handy method of keeping myself honest and a decent record of prices. If I keep all my receipts I'll be able to find where the best prices are and develop my intuition for how much things should cost. All good things.

Every day will have a post outlining expenses, food consumption and exercise. I will also talk about anything I did that I feel is frugal or healthy. There will be additional posts about little craft things that I'll be doing on the side. I still can't write worth a damn, but hey, trying to fix that too.

So much to do. So little time.