Saturday, May 31, 2008

Not rich but, ...Happy.

So my fortune cookie today said:

"Stop searching forever, Happiness is just next to you"

And for at least once in my life, I can agree with my fortune cookie. Not to toot my own horn but, life is going pretty good right now.

  • I have a decent amount of friends around
  • I have family nearby as well
  • I have a wonderful fiance who loves me irregardless
  • I am in good health
  • I have a car
  • I have a well paying, not-so-stressful job
  • I have no debt
  • I have money in the bank
  • I'm an American citizen
  • I just finished writing a finance book & with a little tweaking I should be able to publish it online shortly.
  • I have many more blessings but, unfortunately I can't list them all here.
I guess the saying 'money can't buy you happiness' is very true but, the contrast is deep debt can make your life miserable. I'm so blessed the misery is over. God willing, it will stay that way.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Quote of the Week # 39

Do not fear risk. All exploration, all growth is calculated. Without challenge people cannot reach their higher selves. Only if we are willing to walk over the edge can we become winners.-Unknown?
found on

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Progress Report - for week ended 5/26/08

Still no home computer. I relaxed a little bit too much over the holiday weekend - nevertheless, here are my Goals for May:
  1. Write a book about Debt - I've written just about 8 chapters thus far. two more to go. It should be done by the end of the month.
  2. Increase budget on Wedding account to $7500 - Still holding off on contributing to the wedding fund. I don't think the fiancee has contributed anything so far this month anyway.
  3. Put at least 3 items on E-bay to sell - still slacking - what can I say? having no Internet access at your house kind of defeats the 'sell it on E-bay' goal before you get started .

I'll try and keep this updated as much as I can while I try and figure out my plans for Internet. Having to rush through Internet sessions at the library does not help in the typo section I'm slowly learning so I need to fix this issue soon.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Quote of the Week #38

Persistence is the twin sister of excellence. One is a matter of quality; the other, a matter of time.
found on

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Progress Report for week ended 5/18/08

I'm having multiple technical difficulties with my computer recently so I am writing from the ole' library and I must be brief. here are my goals for May:

  1. Write a book about Debt - I've written the 1st -5th chapters I plan to work on the 6th chapter tonight.
  2. Increase budget on Wedding account to $7500 - I recently learned i will be financially responsible for making sure some of my guests are taken care of. Because of this, I am holding off on contributions to the wedding account and allowing my fiance to handle these.
  3. Put at least 3 items on E-bay to sell - still slacking - maybe if my computer comes back off of life support I will dabble in this this weekend. Then again maybe not.

I did get that 'economic stimulus' check and I spent half about a quarter of celebrating - yours truly's birthday. I am also no longer a 20 something but, a 30-something now. Kind of funny - I thought I'd be richer, taller or better looking by now. Oh well...

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Quote of the Week #37

Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work.
Peter F. Drucker
found on

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

"Protect financial choice – keep payday loans"

OK - anyone who knows me or has read my blog even a little bit - knows these words will never EVER come out of my mouth.

That's why I was so thrown off when I saw that uttered out of a respectable looking actors mouth the other day while watching late night TV.

The actor then directed me to the website:

Which is nothing but unbiased propaganda from the payday loan industry in Ohio begging the ignorant to keep payday loans here in Ohio.

Recently legislators in my home state of Ohio have enacted legislation to get this - reduce the APR on payday loans from an average of right around 399% a year, to about 30% maximum. I was so delighted when I first heard this.

Of course the greedy payday loan industry advocates - some of which are run by the big banks have just started a wonderful ad campaign aimed at tricking Ohioans into thinking a year-long loan for $1000 which would end up costing the borrower about $4000 a year - could ever be a good idea.

Here's an excerpt from their informative site:

"Payday loan customers are smarter than most people give them credit for. For many people, payday loans are the right option for borrowing money. Consider the alternatives. Fees for bouncing a $100 check can cost more than 4 times a payday loan. The cost of getting a $100 cash advance on a credit card can be more than 2 times the cost of a payday loan.

  • $100 bounced check with $54 NSF/merchant fees = 1,409% APR
  • $100 credit card balance with a $37 late fee = 965% APR
  • $100 utility bill with $46 late/reconnect fees = 1,203% APR"
What they fail to mention is cost of a more likely payday loan of $600 - $800:

    • $800 bounced check - still has a $54 NSF if bounced once (not the $432 implied)
    • $800 credit card balance - still has a $37 late fee, if late once (not the $296 implied)
    • $800 utility bill - well no one gets $800 utility bills unless you own a mansion or a business and in either case if you have a late/reconnect bill you might want to rethink some life choices.
    • They also compare these likely, monthly bills, to a bi-weekly merry-go-round where no one is laughing but the payday loan shark.
    • Just for comparison's sake - an $800 loan for one month (renewed twice) will cost the borrower about $240 in charges - take that calculation over a year, without adding additional charges and fees, and it comes to $2,880 in charges alone!

They've also played off the fact that 6,000 people will lose their jobs but, I say if they make their living peddling usury then so be it!

Shame on you payday loan sharks - shame on you! If anyone is in Ohio and pondering whether they should vote to keep or get rid of a 400% interest rate - you better believe my opinion is to get rid of it!

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Entrepreneurship on the mind

Over the last several weeks, I've begun thinking a lot about branching out into part-time and possibly full-time entrepreneurial pursuits. It's been nearly a decade since I graduated from college and my starting salary then is not a whole lot different from my salary now.

Ideas have been sparking in my head and I've become drawn to several books on entrepreneurship like 'Think & Grow Rich' by Napoleon Hill. Magazines on entrepreneurship, like Entrepreneur - which I currently subscribe to and Inc. which I plan to subscribe to. And Podcasts including my favorite - Internet Business Mastery - with Sterling and Jay.

Not only have I begun thinking about it I've been talking to equally interested friends about the same thing. I think it's only a matter of time before I move forward with a business plan my only flaw or obstacle I believe is my own anxiety and procrastination.

Hopefully in the next 3 months I'll have something up and running. Only time will tell. Maybe someday I'll be a millionaire - who knows...

Monday, May 12, 2008

Progress Report - for week ended 5/11/08

I've been doing some thinking recently and I may be changing my strategy in a specific area of my life. That being said - here are my goals for May:

  1. Write a book about Debt - I've written the 1st and 2nd chapters have the 3rd half- written. I plan to finish that chapter up tonight actually time permitting.
  2. Increase budget on Wedding account to $7500 - I need to re-arrange my banking receipts and take a second look at the budget to see exactly where we're at on this one. I know that about $400 has been added to the account in the last couple of weeks but some wedding expenses have been purchased as well.
  3. Put at least 3 items on E-bay to sell - I have been slacking on this goal and have no good excuse. The main focus is the book and the wedding - due to lackluster results on craigslist and lack of knowledge (i.e., ignorance) about E-bay I have been procrastinating.
I've been talking to one of my good friends about starting an entrepreneurial interest but were just in the 'research' stage right now. I'll give more news on that as it progresses.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Quote of the Week #36

"The more you say, the less people remember. The fewer the words, the greater the profit.”

- Unknown
found on

Monday, May 5, 2008

Progress Report - for week ended 5/4/08

Again - here are my goals for May:

  1. Write a book about Debt - I wrote the first chapter.I'm actually planning on working on the 2nd chapter a little tonight. Altogether I plan to have 10 chapters and make the book a quick and easy to read guide under or around 100 pages.
  2. Increase budget on Wedding account to $7500 - Got a rebate check back for adding my fiance's phone to my cell phone plan. Will most likely add that to the wedding account and i hear a rumor that U.S. tax rebates are coming out soon - we'll probably contribute most if not all of these towards our wedding account.
  3. Put at least 3 items on E-bay to sell - I have the account just need to actually put something up. Did some research on shipping a few weeks back and i think that was the only thing really holding me back.
So in the first couple days it appears I'm off to a good start I just need to focus more time on getting things done which should hopefully be more of a possibility now that I have moved into 'our' new place.

In other news I was able to get my Internet set up which is very nice & fantastic I think. I also saw a note on Blogger's dashboard about time-delayed posts! I think that is great - can't wait to use that because I only have time to blog at the strangest possible times.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

April Results/May Goals -2008

My goal for April was:

1. Add $3000 into Wedding Savings account. - FAILURE

I think I might have set my hopes a little too big for our wedding savings. Moving into new places didn't help the matter either. I think this month I will go back to the old strategy.

That being said - here are my goals for May:

    1. Write a book about Debt
    2. Increase budget on Wedding account to $7500
    3. Put at least 3 items on E-bay to sell
Hopefully the three-pronged approach will help me achieve a little bit better. It appears it might be my potential A.D.D. that sabotaged the 'single goal' experiment/idea. I've had so many things going on that i really didn't have tome to devote to this.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

April 2008 Net Worth

So it appears my Net Worth took a bit of a hit this month. Fortunately, I know that the hit is mainly my car's value and not any additional debt. A few weeks back my tire went flat which led me to find some additional damage on my vehicle that takes it from being in "Good" condition down to "Fair". It's OK my car will be alright but the difference in Value is about $750 give or take. Plus old 'Carmen' is coming close to pushing 200K so it might be time for a new ride very soon.

On an entirely different note - I am really glad I'll be switching back to my home Internet come tomorrow once it's installed in the new place... one major disadvantage of library Internet is the possibility of sitting next to pseudo-homeless person who hasn't bathed in days. People sitting around you begin to think your the cause of the stench and it might be rude to just stand up and point to the person next to you who's causing the stench. So much for manners...

Anyway - once my Internet is up and running I'll be posting my goals for May. Until then thanks for reading.

Quote of the Week #35

[He sees himself as an entrepreneur, but he defines it his own way.] People mix up entrepreneurship with risk-taking, ... An entrepreneur is a risk-minimizer, an opportunity seeker.
Peter Farrell quotes
found on