Archive | March, 2014

Random Bank Interest Charges

31 Mar

Recently, I have been watching my credit card statement more closely as I have had weird random “interest charges” that will show up on my account.  The funny thing about this is that fact that when I asked about one charge I had like that the lady at the bank just brushed it off and said that it was a charger from the time that I got my statement until the time that they received my payment that I had been charged.

Balancing The Account By HandThis was not something that could be even remotely true since I do all my banking online and I simply transfer money from my checking account to my credit card, since they are through the same institution.  Then, she said it was nothing to worry about and asked if I would like her to clear that up.  I said yes, thinking that she was going to make the charge go away but later when I checked my account, I noticed that she had just transfer the $1, I had been charged from my checking to my credit card!

I have been watching for these and you should too, if you pay your credit card off each time you put a charge on it or if you have debt but you make your payments each month and you start seeing new charges that pop up, ask about them.  Clear them up immediately and make sure that you don’t get duped into someone just “taking care of that” for you with your money.

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Student Loans

30 Mar

Now that I have graduated from college, I have been thrown into the world of debt.  I suddenly have this large amount of money that at the time when I was borrowing it the small loans seemed reasonable and easy to take.  I have always struggled with saving money without having a goal – I saved for summer camp when I was young, study abroad, rent and spring break while I was in college and I only saved for that specific occasion.

I never thought ahead enough to save you know what I am going to need money from somewhere to pay all these off.  Now I am in that boat.  I am also in a position where it is the easiest for me to be saving money, as I no longer pay for books and tuition each semester (even with loans tuition is crazy!).  In fact, I am trying to save for two things at a time.  I am saving up to move to Madrid in the fall and I am saving up for all those loans that I will need to start paying back in 3 months.

Something that I am very please about was the fact that I have paid off my first student loan.  I have been working on in since September, while I was still in college but I finally made the last payment this past week.  I feel so free!  Well, almost.  I have a long way to go but it is an accomplishment that I am proud of.

I decided that instead of making just payment after payment and paying down the total bill, I am going to try to pay off one loan at a time.  So I will start with my loan to UK and pay that one off (since it is my smallest) and then I will pay off each one of my federal loans, one at a time.  I also am going to try to pay them off in three years instead of the 10 which is where my plan has me set at now!

If you want to see how many people graduate with debt in your state check out this cool map.

Map of US

Changes

29 Mar

I recently had been tasked with finding cool giveaway items for 10th graders which at first I thought would be a simple task and then I can to realize how out of touch I am with the “youths” (a term that people used to refer to me as).  I sat with my co-workers for over an hour trying to come up with things that sophomores in high school would receive to entice them to participate in a study.

While thinking back on all the cool stuff that happened while I was a sophomore, I could really think of nothing.  I had a cell phone but it could barely access the internet and what it could do was limited to seeing how many minutes I had used, texts I had sent and browsing the provider’s website.

What do kinds do these days?  I enjoyed sports and playing cards but both of those were shot down quickly because of the smart phone.  There are endless apps available for both of those things.  Then we moved on to ideas that would relate to cars, but then as I thought about it, I couldn’t drive as a sophomore and most kids at that age can’t afford a car anyway.

The other issue is that I work with mostly hipsters, college students and academics.  It is hard to think outside of our world, I know I have seen the fad of high white socks on kids but that idea was shot down because someone else suggested that kids would not wear them but if they had a funky argile pattern that might be more likely….

…..basically I am back to square 1, flashdrives and cool stickers.  I did learn something about myself though, while I feel like I might be able to speak for the masses at most times, this was not one of them and I need to read up more on what “the kids these days are doing.”

 

Vacation

28 Mar
Punta Cana

Punta Cana

Usually each year my family goes on vacation, we used to spend each summer at the lake but as we grew up and our lives changed that no longer seemed to work as well as it used to.  I still love the lake and miss the fact that I had somewhere to go and something to do each and every weekend in the summer.

Now, my family has moved to taking destination vacations once a year, usually around Christmas, when we all don’t have such crazy schedules but this year we decided on taking a week in the spring.

Which means that in 3 more days I will be heading to the Dominican Republic!  I have been basically bouncing off the walls waiting to go and the wait has just been made so much longer by the fact that it snowed another inch here in Lexington today.  It feels like my time on the beach will never come!  I have been counting down the meetings until I get to leave!

Being out of college is a funny thing.  I had so much more free time and so many less commitments that I feel as though a huge weight has been lifted off of my social life.  I can finally enjoy a late graduation celebration!

Painted Wine Bottles – Update

27 Mar

It has been 4 months since I made this post and while I may be slow I actually did end up making these with my friends and they turned out wonderful.

While I am not very artistic I do enjoying drawing geometric shapes and so my bottle is nothing but these same shapes over and over again and it looks very ornate.  Can you guess which one is mine?  (Hint:  I love blue).

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Update

26 Mar
graduation

My mom and I at graduation.
Photo Credit: Ray Sand

Things have recently been very busy for me.  I became really stressed out at the end of November after I realized I was graduating college with a lot of uncertainty.  What would I do?  Where would I go?  The other thing, I was about to lose my job.

I had worked all through college at a wonderful creative and technical services place called the Hive, which was on campus.  The trick was though I was a student worker and after graduating, I would no longer be a student.  Therefore, I could no longer be working as a student.

Finally, in a moment of panic I freaked out and talked to my boss and it turned out that they did not really want to get rid of me either.  Instead, they offered me a temporary position so that I could pull myself together and figure out my next step.  This was immensely helpful and I took on a position with new leadership demands.

While feeling more secure for at least another semester and summer (I still think in academic terms), I looked into different options as to what I will do next.  I found a program that would allow me to move to Spain and work there as a teacher of English.  I applied and was accepted and I will be moving to Madrid in the fall.

I plan on keeping this blog although I might be changing the focus of it some as my life progresses and goes off in different ways.

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