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Archive for September, 2005

job interviews

September 30th, 2005 at 12:23 am

Well, I answered an ad placed by an employment agency and went in for an interview... I feel it went rather well, and that the guy doing the interview was impressed...I particularly feel that he thought he could get a good comission (they get paid based on the salary of the person being hired!) so that gives me hope...that was on Tuesday...then, yesterday, I got a call from the US Embassy to come in for testing regarding an application that I had sent a couple of weeks ago...I think I did well on the tests...One was a General Services one, with several questions on things like taking stuff out of customs, local labor laws, etc...and, although I found a couple of the questions a bit difficult, seeing how the other applicants seemed to have a hard time answering - and seeing that they found the English test hard, and I didn't - I think I might have an advantage...The only thing is, after we had finished the General SErvices test, a woman came in for the English test...and she was wearing an Embassy id badge...she already works there! - internal applicants have preference, of course...but, then, she is pregnat and due next week (she told someone else in the group), so, unless she's planning on a very early return to work, or they are planning on waiting for her to come back from maternity leave (3 months), I think I am still a good candidate...
We'll see...it would be a dream come true...the place is like 5 blocks from home, and the salary is 2X what I'm currently making!

more medical bills!

September 27th, 2005 at 03:23 pm

Ale is sick again...visit to the Dr.: $25, blood tests: $10.50 ...medicines (I couldn't get ALL of them): $19.41....(to get them all would have been about $50...) Frown

The good news is: it's not dengue - she already had that and the second time around it turns hemorragic...
She has to stay home, in bed.... ((sigh))....she's going to be mad at missing the Children's Day party at school this Friday, especially since they were going to get to bring their favorite toy, and she had hers already picked out!...oh, well... I HAD to take out the Barbie outfits that I had bought her for Xmas (3X $1.50!), so she has more things to occupy her, and made a bunch of print outs for her to color and work on her letters and numbers at home...

Gave my dept store cc to my sister for safekeeping!

September 22nd, 2005 at 07:13 pm

...my card got stolen about 2 years ago, and I didn't bother asking for a new plastic, as it made shopping a lot more difficult (had to go to Cus Svc, wait in line, show 2 ID's, get a "temporary" card that was only good for the day and had to tell the cus svc people how many purchases I was going to make...), but, I got a replacement because the temporaries don't work for Radio Shack (the plastic does!) and I needed to buy a battery charger and some rechargeable batteries for DD (at the rate she goes for batteries, the thing will pay for itself in 3 months!), ....then,I also got myself a memory stick, as I sometimes have to take HUGE files down to Xerox for printing, and waiting for someone to lend me one was a drag....it was on sale, but, still, it was not something I really, really NEEDED, and that bothers me a bit...though it does make life a lot easier!

But, lately, I kept thinking of things to buy at that dept store....and it's only 3 blocks from the office - perfect for going there during lunch time or after work....so, I gave my sister the card for safekeeping, so I won't fall into temptation...

On a good note, I went to that dept store to pay the other day -BEFORE giving my sis the card- and they were having a Red Diamond Sale, which is their special semi-annual sale where some things are put 40% off the tagged price (the only time where you might get a special over already-discounted prices!) and I couldn't find anything to buy!! - I forgot to check the cosmetics counter, thank GOD!....so I didn't spend that day!!.

All I want for Xmas is...

September 20th, 2005 at 04:42 pm

PAID OUT bills!!....Sis and I have decided that this year we really, really won't give each other presents...I'll get my DD something and she'll get her DD something and that'll be it... What I'm going to give myself is PAID OUT cc bills...I'm going to make copies of the account statements and/or cancellation letters and make ornaments with them to hang on my Xmas tree!...that way, instead of feeling sad that I don't have presents, I can remember that I'm giving myself - and my daughter - a gift that is worth soooooo much more than anything we could buy!!
I have paid out 2 cc's already and, have made payment plans that will allow me to pay 1 more by December 15th and yet another one by January 30th...that'll still leave me plenty of debt to worry over the next 2 years or so (taking into account that my parent's farm money will run out on Dec, so payments will be lower and won't have such an impact...may even have to go back to min payments on the remaining cards)...
I have gone back to knitting for the $5,000 challenge and, tried to schedule a talk with my boss about my salary...he didn't answer, so I'll re-schedule (he was out of the office yesterday and has been in and out of meetings today)...I already know what I'm going to say and how I'm going to say it...because, honest, I don't only NEED a pay raise (raise, not adjustment!) but also WANT a pay raise, and, more importantly, I DESERVE a pay raise!! I'll let you know what happens!

OUCH!

September 13th, 2005 at 11:19 pm

gas prices are affecting everything! Frown I had my weekly grocery shopping down to $40 and, yesterday, I spent $53...in a lot less food than usual! ...and rising!...I don't know what I'm going to do...the worse thing is, I predict not much long will pass before the nanny asks for a raise - which would be compeletely understandable and deserved....I just don't have the money to give her any more than I'm already paying her!...doing without her is really not an option, as I have a 4 year old daughter.... I'm a single mom and, so is my sister, so, basically, there's noone else to take care of the kid...and, leaving her in daycare is $10 more expensive than paying for the maid!....and it would mean I would HAVE to leave the office before 5 every day - not an option!... We have managed to bring the water bill down to $9 (used to be $20) and, are currently working on the electricity and phone bills...phone will be difficult, due my niece...electricity, the house is just SO DARK!...we have changed the lightbulbs that are used the most for energy saving ones - we hate the kind of light they give - and left "normal" lightbulbs only in our rooms and bathrooms - used from 7pm on...

on debt

September 9th, 2005 at 11:42 pm

we were watching the Muppets vresion of The Elves and the shoemaker with DD and, at one point, Kermit and Robin have sold all the shoes and have a bundle of money, and then the banker grabs it- he had come by the day before to tell them they had to pay or else... And DD -who still doesn't understand all the dialogues- said: look, Mommy, now they don't have ANY money, because it was stolen from them!...and I said: no. The banker didn't steal it, he COLLECTED it, because Kermit and Robin owed the bank a lot of money, so, that's a lesson for you when you grow up: If you owe a lot of money, other people will own your money, but, if you stay out of debt, your money will be yours...Mommy owes a lot of money, which is why we can't buy a lot of things, because I have to give it to the bank to repay my debts...

You should have seen the look on her face!

Is it a good deal?

September 8th, 2005 at 04:59 pm

Well, I called the cc company and asked if they would consolidate the debt that I have for the 2 cards I have with them...they said yes and offered a monthly payment of $184 - for 4 years!, which is less than what I am currently paying, but more than I was willing to pay ($150), and I had estimated 3 years to pay them off!...I have to call them again and ask a few questions before I make a decision (what exactly are they consolidating, what is the interest rate, does it stay fixed or can it go up/down depending on market trends, etc....) I might say yes and continue with my plan and then try to get a loan from a bank at a much lower interest...but, I just don't want to commit just like that, without researching other options...ah! I must be getting smarter! Wink

My $20 into $5,000 challenge efforts are stalled at the moment, and I hate it, but, I have been sooooo tired lately...I am supposed to knit for 2 hours every night and, I haven't. I have been going to bed 2 hours earlier and waking up half an hour later.... there must be something wrong with me...Either that, or they are working me too much! (probably!...this week I have been given 100 pages to translate, 2 trainings to organize -logistics only, not materials- and about 200 feedback forms to input into the feedback database - which is not difficult or anything, but, still, takes time, and I'm supposed to be shipping packages to our South and North American stations...) But, because (almost) everyone else is out at training, I have been going home early (at around 5:30 to 6, instead of 6:30-7!) and spent some time with DD...

gas prices went up $0.82/gallon!!!

September 7th, 2005 at 09:56 pm

Just when I felt I had actually worked out a budget, this really smashed it....Since I was spending $5/week on gas, I had budgeted $10 - providing for future increases....but, the problem is, with this increase, my weekly budget will probably be something more like $15... Frown

Recent researches show that Salvadorans are consuming a lot less gas, but spending a lot more on it!...

Oh, well....back to the drawing board...

...I don't think I'll do it

September 6th, 2005 at 03:57 pm

the freelance teacher thing...they are paying $5/hour, offering only 2 hours/week ON SATURDAY and the classes are not at their main offices....I'd have to re-shuffle DD's activities on Saturday and find someone to take her there, spend about $3 of gas/week to get there (at current prices!, what happens when it goes up?) and pay 10% income tax on those $10...so I'd end up getting about $6/week...not worth the trouble...there are easier, faster ways to make $6/week! Frown

Well, I'll keep looking for other sources of income...and also of other ways to save...

the good news is, our enclosed neighborhood is finally being granted it's own little park, so that's a new place to go without spending $0.01 in gas (it's about 3 blocks from the house!!), enclosed in our neighborhood (i.e.: safe!!)....It's being inaugurated next Saturday, so I'll go check it out....maybe there'll be some benches or tables and space for a small pic-nic for DD and me and, hopefully, games for her... at no cost!! woo-hoo!!

The bad news is, gas increased by $0.82/gallon as of today!! I heard the rumors yesterday and went to fill up my car...the tank was halfway full, and it cost me $14 to fill it up!! (it used to be $12 when it was empty!!)...

The ugly news is: my sister's ex-husband is now claiming he has spent so much this year, he cannot afford to "help her" with my niece's tuition as he had promised...the guy is despicable!...he has no money for his daughter's school, yet he IS keeping his country club membership active - eventhough he's now going to live in the US, and will be using the facilities about 2 or 3 times a year, at most!...He's also keeping one of his cars here, to use when he comes to visit...talk about having your priorities wrong!...but, as I told my sister, what could you expect??...my sister had to pay $6,000 for medical bills from my niece's illness last year and all he did was say: Wow, the hospital sure charged you a lot!....AAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRGHHHHH!!!...

They called!!

September 1st, 2005 at 11:05 pm

The people from the ad for freelance teachers called!! I have an interview on Saturday at 8:50am!!!....I'll drop DD off early at church and then go to the interview...I hope that I can pick her up on time to go to the swimming lessons...
I KNOW I can get that extra job!!...and, the place is about 8 blocks from work, so if I'm going to be teaching from 6-7pm (hours I listed as available), I can leave work at 5:30pm and have plenty of time to get there! (I generally leave work at 6:00 or 7:00pm (my schedule is supposed to be 8:00 to 5:00, but in reality it's more like 8:30-whenever....so I could compensate by arriving at 8:00 sharp and perhaps taking 45 minutes for lunch instead of 1 hour!) woooo-hooo! ....wish me luck!