Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Internet Woes

I don't like computers. Networking, figuring IP addresses, all that stuff is purely annoying. I just want them to work. Since I am in a budget crisis due to rising food and gas costs, I did the responsible thing, researched internet companies and made the switch.
DSL came. I had no problems getting set up with the internet, but we could NOT get the wireless router set up with it. In frustration, I decided to stick with cable for internet. I turned in the remote and cable box, and explained that  I still wanted to keep internet. Well, that's an additional 10 a month, which means my bill will be nearly 75 or 80 with fees just for internet. AND they will charge me 40 to disconnect the cable. I decided to try setting up the dsl again. Same thing.
I have followed every tutorial I can find, but I can't get it to work with wireless.
I am so frustrated. They charge $200 to have someone come set it up, and even customer service has a charge. As a last ditch effort, my ex is going to come look at it. But I don't know what to do. Should I cancel the cable modem before the person comes to disconnect the tv (they said I would have to wait 7 days to disconnect everything, because they want to charge an extra week). Or stick with the cable modem which works, and just send all the ATT stuff back and deal with the bill for nothing. I don't know. I am so frustrated.
I know that somehow the DSL should work with wireless. But am I going to have to shell out 90 for the att router so I will be able to get their tech support?


Monday, June 6, 2011

Countdown to cheap?

I like having kids. I like the meaning they bring to life, and seeing the world through their fresh eyes (until they become jaded nine year olds, thanks to cable tv). All my adult life, I stressed how cheap and easy kids can be. Cloth diapers, breastfeeding, yards sales, etc. Having babies is cheap (I guess it helped that my ex was in the military which made for cheap births).
The past year has changed my opinion. First, Liam was born, which ended up costing $5000, because of the way the hospital bill was made up, out of pocket. Then the insurance for a baby-just in case. Then my fiance hates cloth diapers, and we can't afford for me to stay home, so we had to buy formula to supplement during the day. I abhor breast pumps. It's so boring to sit there.
Then Taryn had to have talent. So we shell out for voice lessons and cheerleading lessons, and wouldn't you know? She made the team. Another $380, and she doesn't even get to keep the uniforms.
On top of everything, I now have two teenagers and one near teenager. Do you know how many calories teenagers need in a day? They eat everything. And they are in public schools, so they need a somewhat large wardrobe. Taryn is the only brand-conscious one, but it hurts. I say no as much as possible. But I know how it feels to be the kid with the knockoff brand. It hurts, especially when you are a self-conscious teenager, and feel like everyone is judging (and they are. Really). Tierney has yet to find a job to help pay her expenses.
Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't trade my kids for any amount of cash. But once they lose the innocent cuteness, you are left with R&B smut singing (thanks 96.5), food-eating, young adults, who cost a lot and still try to sneak out of doing chores by disappearing into their bedrooms under a pile of clothing, dishes, and stuff. I understand what Bill Cosby was joking about The Cosby Show, now. I know now why people say they can't wait until they grow up.

Thank goodness I am too poor to pay for their college. But there is probably some hidden cost of college kids I don't yet know about.

Guess I will go stare at the not-really-innocent faces, while they beg to go "do something".

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Help, Please!

I am collecting information for a story I am writing. I am hoping people will comment or email me with a list of 3 to 5 of their top values and priorities in life.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Having fun

I am enjoying my money free weekend. Well, I did scrounge up some money for cat food, and I am craving some Shiraz, but I will persevere!


Well, the Bulls are now done for the year, having lost to the evil, awful Miami Heat, and so it is time to get rid of cable. I decided I am going to go with DSL from AT&T for internet (only 20 a year for the first year). Of course, with taxes and fees it will be around 35 most likely, but it is still cheaper than mediacom. Right now, my mediacom bill is $72 for cable, and 55 for internet. Of course, internet is "only" 45, but they now charge 5 for the modem and 5 for a "line" use. Whatever. I will just go back and forth between the two every year, if that's what it takes.
Activation isn't until June 2nd, so I suppose I will keep cable until Karl gets the DSL set up. I just hope it works well with the wireless router we have. I don't want to have to buy another.

Since we have a wii, netflix is a great cheap buy. Sometimes it requires a little patience (it does take a movie two days to get here), but so many interesting shows and movies are instantly available.

I suppose it will be hard to fill long summer nights without the benefit of a baseball game, but I will survive.

Desperate for Cash?

I was searching for some quick ways to put some cash in my bank account. Since a few weeks before I had Liam, I stopped driving the cab on weekends, and the bite to my budget has been quite hard.

Wallet Pop had this article
25 (unusual) ways to Make Quick Money

To be honest, most of them weren't really that unusual. I thought about a parttime job, but I am so looking forward to summer, I just don't want one. I had already been thinking of a yard sale to get rid of some baby clutter. But since I woke before three today, it is unlikely I am going to have the energy to pull it off this morning. Maybe next week.
Another option was to offer to babysit. After Karl goes through training at his new job, he will be working Friday nights. I might be able to do Friday night babysitting for parents who want and can afford to get out. I figure I could charge $8 an hour. It wouldn't be steady, but even an extra 25 or 30 here and there would help. I could either do it here, or bring Liam with me to the people's house.

Another suggestion I had forgotten is selling plasma. Now, it is not my idea of a good time to go sit around for hours to make a few bucks. But...it's summer, and if I had Tierney to watch the baby, it might be worth looking into. 

Friday, May 27, 2011

Definitely a "money free" weekend.

I am overdrawn on my checking account. Somewhere in my head, I thought I had at least a couple hundred (and I was worried about that being too little). I forced myself to check, despite the queasiness in my stomach something akin to checking my grade on a college paper. And there it was. It isn't an enormous amount. I will have money to deposit from Karl next week. It's frustrating, though. I keep thinking of what I shouldn't have bought for the students this week And the tickets to the movies I shouldn't have got the kids last week. And so on. But, what's done is done, so now to make the best of it.

First, I am not going to drive out to get my milk this weekend. I emailed the guy. I am embarrassed, but seriously, raw milk is a luxury I can forgo until I have more money.
Second, I am going to scrounge up change wherever I can find it to put gas in the van.
Third, I am going to use the tips from a previous posting to have a "money free" weekend.

Here is what I want to do:  Plans