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Archive for May, 2007

Tentative Plans

May 31st, 2007 at 10:15 am

So I'm looking at my New Year's resolutions and realizing that the year's nearly half-over. I'm still 20 lbs heavier than what I planned to be by this time, I still haven't won the Oscar, climbed the mountaintop or had a marathon kissing session with Jake Gyllenhaal. I gotta work on that last part, really.

In any case, it's time for me to recrunch the numbers and look at my financial goals.

At my current rate of spending, including saving for an emergency fund and also a freedom account, I'm coming in slightly under budget, with a nominal amount that I can use for snowflaking. This is entirely from my job at the Forum (the day gig.)

Although I have the opportunity (for which I am eternally grateful) to spend some extra hours at the Souk, I'm really trying to transition away from that -- apprenticing at the Guild really takes up a lot of my time. And since I don't want to be an apprentice forever, I need to really focus my attention on doing a good job now.

So the long-term plan is to replace the time I spend wenching with something more in line with my guildwork. Wenching, though fun, isn't exactly something I can put on my resume. Ideally, I would intern at the Guild, but I can't afford to quit the day job.

Also, the second income from the Souk was really helpful in paying down some of my debt. So the other long term plan is to find some way to use my knowledge from the Guild to make a little extra $$. This summer is supposed to be used to get that started. I don't need to make a lot of $$, and I don't expect any side gig to be self-supporting, but if it can help pay the Brass Knuckle Crew from a date with my kneecaps, then I'm doing all right.

However, in the short term, I need to raise some capital, fast. I've been asked to put in some extra hours at the Souk, and I've been reluctant to agree to this: once the time's committed, it can't easily be revoked. But I'll be moving, and I need money for that. So I'm looking at the perfect mathmatical balance between hours worked, money earned and progression on goals.

This is what I came up with:

Working for one more summer and a Christmas at the Souk will give me the money I'd need to do one of the following:

1. Pay off two bills early (by about 5 months)
2. Complete the Emergency Fund

The cons are that it'll be at the expense of using this summer to break ground for next summer's goal (freelance guild work).

I'm not quite sure how I feel about either situation, so June is earmarked for decisions and revisions, and a few late nights with the calculator and the mirror: what should I do, and what am I likely to actually do?

But so far, there's been a stepwise progression ahead, which is great.

A not so drastic move

May 30th, 2007 at 01:06 pm

I've decided to move to a new apartment. Currently, I live in a cave on the mountaintop (at least that's what it feels like sometimes!) It's a tiny studio space, barely enough room to open a door and shatter a window. But it's enough room for me and 10 lbs of stinky socks, and the tiny space translates into a tiny rent. Plus it's in a good location: equidistant between the Forum and the Souk (in the sense that all roads lead to Rome.)

So why the switch?

I'm spending a lot less time at the Souk these days, and much more time doing the work of the Guild. Most of my nights are spent in the libraries, and I'm finding that my commute is getting problematic.

Plus, I'm finding that living in a cave and dodging out at night doesn't lend itself to either money-saving or better eating practices. The biggest expenses I have at this point are transportation and carryout. It's really just silly how much money I spend in these categories.

So I found a little studio apartment within public transportation of the Guild, not too much difference from what I pay right now. The only problem is that I have to come up with the $$ for the moving expenses and a few household items that I aren't provided in the new place. It's quite a bit of capital for me to raise up front, but I have a little $$ put away (and of course, the Souk keeps her doors and arms wide open).

Still, I think that the math works: even with these purchases, I'll be paying what I'm currently paying plus I'll cut the commute time/cost down.

Also, I think that in this location, I'll be able to have healthier habits (more time at home = more meals at home.)

I'm a little nervous, but I hope that the move will pay off overall.

May is nearly over, and with that half the year

May 22nd, 2007 at 03:16 pm

This is just a quick post: I haven't been on the site in 10 million years it seems. And there have been a lot of changes since then. I've been able to repay off two old debts and part of a third, which tally to about 2000.00. I have another 500 of the the third debt left to go before that's finished, but it's uncertain yet if I'll be able to pay off the fourth debt this year. Mostly because I haven't been quite as good with the $$ as I could have been.

In any case, I have to update my goals for the remainder of 2007, and decide how my time will be spent between the Forum, the Souk and the Guild. So I'll be back to hash out the details (it seems a little easier to write than to think it in my mind.)