This is a list of bits and pieces that don't warrent an entire post but are too good not to put somewhere on this blog.
1. My total indebtedness went down in November, though not by much. I'll do a more thorough analysis at the end of December.
2. My 401(k) is back over $100,000 but the roller coaster is giving me a headache. I have made a decision NOT to increase the monthly amount I put into my 401(k) in 2009 but I'm not going to reduce it either.
3. On the job front, I will not be getting a raise this year, but I will get a lump sum payment in January. We are unionized and have a salary scale. I've been at the top of the scale for years, so rather than keep adding steps to the scale, I am more likely to get a lump sum that is a percentage of my annual wage. The truth is, I rather like this, though I would not want it to continue forever. I could get $120 more per month which winds up being about $42 more per paycheck or I could get one larger check. Sad to say, I am more likely to put the lump sum toward debt reduction than the regular monthly increase.
4. I did hit the major sales on Black Friday, and if I do say so myself, I got a lot of great deals and no lives were lost. In fact, it seemed to me that there were not as many folks out at 5:00 a.m. as I've seen in the past. One local store puts all their socks and bath towels on sale at half-price--I stocked up for the year. Another had comforters for $9.99. I got several since I never seem to have enough blankets, especially when I have guests. For whatever reason, GPS units are on everyone's Christmas list this year, so I bought several TomTom 125 units for $99 each--the lowest price I've seen for those. I also got 60% off on children's winter jackets, so guess what the grandkids are getting from Grandma Grace this year.
5. My sister (the rich one, and the provider of major gifts to moi!) came for Thanksgiving and gave me my gift early--a great gift it is, too! She is paying for my entire home interior to be repainted and rewallpapered. I've been in this home 18 years and have repainted only two rooms. After assorted children and grandchildren, some with serious behavior issues that impacted (literally!) the walls of my house, it badly needs refurbishing. Not to mention that the previous owners thought that blue plaid wallpaper would look good in the kitchen. Ahem! Since when is blue plaid wallpaper a good idea for ANY room? So Grace is knee deep in color chips and wallpaper samples. Pray for her, and keep her away from magenta accent walls!
6. I love cranky bloggers, so I particularly appreciated this one from Becoming Debt Free in 2009. The woman who griped about new hubby's child support debt annoyed me the most, especially because she may well be in the old wife's position some day.
7. Gas is $1.69 and my 100 gallons of heating oil is now $189 rather than the $307 it was I paid the last time I put oil in the tank.
That's it for the small stuff. More, later.