Thoughts – Day 1: Money Management

Are you the one who doesn’t earn much but yet is able to save lots of money? Or are you the one who never seem to earn enough to cover whatever that you spend? If you belong to the earlier group, well, good for you because no matter how much you earn, you don’t seem to need to worry about having your ends meet.

I, belong to the latter one. But it doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world. It only means I need to spend more effort in controlling and managing of my money. I’d tried and succeeded before, but of course, I ended up going back to my old ways when I started being less aware of it. Still, I KNOW it’s doable and I’m trying it again, and hopefully, being able to maintain it.

So here’s the what needs to be done:

(1) List out ALL the fixed incomes and expenses that you have monthly. You need to have an overview of your finance. It’s a VERY important step. Using an excel (preferably, you can download the one I’m using from here), calculate the total incomes and expenses, and get an idea of how much you have extra/shortage per month. If this is a negative number, I think you are in BIG trouble. It’s really an emergency to see if you can cut down on any of the expenses at all, or find ways to earn more. If it’s a positive number, then the next thing is to plan for the “SAVE” part. No matter how pathetic you can save each month, it doesn’t matter. Start small, and try to increase later on.

(2) Make it a point to note down what you spend daily. It’s difficult and troublesome but that will give you an overview on what you spent on, and in that way, easier for you to control on your spending on the respective aspect.

(3) Have at least 2 bank accounts. One for normal usage, second for the untouchables. Make the second one as difficult to withdraw the money as possible. Preferably with no ATM card. Make sure you save a fixed amount every month first, once you’d gotten your pay, instead of thinking “I will save whatever that I have left at the end of the month”. It, generally doesn’t work that way. I’d tried, and failed BADLY. *LOL*

(4) Don’t use your credit card where possible. It gives you a false sense of the amount of money that you have.

(5) Be frugal, very frugal, extremely frugal! Stop taking the cabs. Stop your shopping, online or not. Stop walking around in shopping centres. Stop meeting up with friends so often. Stop going to restaurants and start going home for dinner.

(6) Only start thinking about investment if you have the extras. Otherwise, just do the above 5 points for now. And if you indeed have extras for investment, invest wisely. I’d never had the chance (sadly) to do investments yet, so I can’t really advise on this point.

Last note: If you have someone trustworthy that can help you to maintain and manage all these, go for it! That’s all I can think of, the simple ways to getting a positive number. Good luck!

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Ramblings #0867

10.06am – It’s Tuesday and erm… right, it’s Tuesday. The sun is up high and bright. The wind is sleeping. Erm… *blank*

2.06pm – Attempted gym exercise failed, ended up at MOS burger. Wanted to try their new Saba rice burger but in the end decided against it due to the words on a sticker pasted there – “Bones within Saba”. Right, that sucks huh?

4.57pm – *GULP* Only $145 to spend this month?? O.O”’ I’ve got my new cake decoration module starting tomorrow, and then meeting my ex-colleagues as well too… *faintz*

5.05pm – Okay. I can do it. I can do it. No more excuses! Cannot let the lil’ hub see me no up!

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5.47pm – DUMP ALL YOU WANT!! Another blue screen… really time for me to kill this office lappie? *LOL* My tech’s quite fast though. Posted on Facebook less than a minute and he came running along. Oops. Wasn’t really meant for you to see. I was just rambling :p

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5.55pm – I think I’m falling in love… in love with Ice Blue… white and ice blue for the next house?? In country style? Hmm… shall start collecting pictures on it!

6.21pm – PACK UP!

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Thoughts – 31 Organized Days

Right. It’s early in the morning, and it’s been at least the third time since I came across such articles posted on my friend’s Facebook, on life lessons to learn while you are in your 30’s and what not. I’m in my 30’s, or am I not? Darn, I am, and almost mid way through it. *pressing on the panic button!* Yes, I should start to panic, especially when my plans ALWAYS go haywire half way down the road, and I’d never had a lump sum of savings at all, thanks to my spending nature. I don’t have the determination, and getting lesser nowadays. I know I had to start, to prepare for rainy days, lest something were to happen in the days to come.

So here it is. After spending time, reading through the articles written by various bloggers, I’d decided to come up with my own 31 days, to get things up and running, to stay organize (TRY) in the different aspect.

Basically, there’s 6 areas – time, stuff, inner, career, money, and family. And for each and every area, I simply need to remember 5 actions – THROW, DONATE, SELL, REUSE or KEEP. Well, maybe these actions are generally for the “stuff” area, but I guess the keeping part works for some other areas too.

Time is always an issue and I can’t spend weeks and months to get things right. So I’ll try the crash course way. Just 31 days, after work, back at home and doing whatever that is needed. Well, I’m a full time working mother that’s staying at my mother’s house with only one room available to put whatever “rubbish” that I have. If anything would help, staying organize and keeping the room tidy would be more than good enough (for now only, it’s never enough). Right, sis? *LOL*

Here goes the list…

Day 1: Money management
Day 2: Manage time
Day 3: Manage space
Day 4: Exercise
Day 5: Healthier life
Day 6: Dip Fried
Day 7: Pans & Play
Day 8: Women de Loft
Day 9: Petite Pep
Day 10: Milkie’s calendar
Day 11: Paying bills
Day 12: Receipts
Day 13: Home office
Day 14: Filing system
Day 15: Jewelry and accessories
Day 16: My wardrobe
Day 17: Shoes
Day 18: Makeup and cosmetics
Day 19: Milkie’s wardrobe
Day 20: Grocery shopping
Day 21: Mail
Day 22: Passwords, manuals & warranties
Day 23: Purses and briefcases
Day 24: Books
Day 25: CDs and DVDs
Day 26: Photographs
Day 27: Crafts
Day 28: Toys and games
Day 29: Wrapping paper and supplies
Day 30: Recipes
Day 31: Baking tools

It’s the umpteenth time that I’d tried but it’s okay! Ganbatte and try AGAIN!

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Ramblings #0866

6.31am – I woke up at the sound of little milkie asking for milk. I ignored her and then she asked for pacifier this time round. I found it and put it in her mouth. That shut her up. This was when I realized that something was there… someone was there… the lil’ hub is there, sleeping soundly on the bed… Hmm… when did he come?? O.O? *scratched head, baffled and went back to sleep*

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Ramblings #0864

3.48am – It definitely doesn’t help when you’ve got a not-so-intelligent husband, who wakes you up in the middle of the night, just to ask you if you’ve pasted the mosquito patch on the baby… Damn it. WHY COULDN’T YOU SIMPLY SEE FOR YOURSELF, AND IF DON’T HAVE, PASTE IT ON YOUR OWN, OR ELSE YOU USE THE MOSQUITO REPELLENT INSTEAD??!!!

You woke me up despite the fact that you know very well that (i) I’m a light sleeper and wakes up very easily and (ii) I have sleeping disorder especially of recent. The sleep’s been disturbed. You happily went back to sleep while I struggled a little to get back to sleep. How wonderful… -.-”’

8.52am – I can vaguely remember anything. I felt very tired but I thought I tried to sleep early too…? No, wait. I woke up and played the game. But why did I wake up… *stares at the lil’ hub who was giggling away*

9.12am – Breakfast at the Sheng Siong nearby. Sucks. The butter and kaya tasted a bit weird, and the eggs are a little too uncooked. *thumbs down*

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11.21am – Is my face so not recognizable or that I’m being forgotten?? Looking at the comments written by the birthday boy on other wishes but not on mine. *furious*

12.39pm – I sat in the middle of the fast food restaurant, munching my fries away as groups of students from various school poured in. There wasn’t anything special about those kids until some words caught my attention. Vulgarities. Not just once, but continuously. I turned over and tried to identify which school that kid is from. And then I looked around, and realizes that there were students from all the 3 nearby schools around. I started to watch how the students behave and the following was what I’d concluded.

  • School A: A few speaking loudly in public, and that included vulgarities (both in Hokkien & English). Girls wearing skirt with the hem lines ending at least 15cm above knees, and sat on chairs like nobody’s business (legs opened wide).
  • School B & C: All look prim and proper, and talking at a normal volume and tone.

If you have a child, which school would you enrol him/her into? I’m so very glad that my cousin managed to get into School B, and that his mum finally gave up (after realizing that the opposition group is too strong for her one-woman-stand) insisting on letting him to go into School A. Sigh… what is her mind thinking of…

1.45pm – It’s always nice to have lunch with an old friend. Just had one again with the crappy guy, whom used to be my first official boyfriend. I seriously wonder what did I like in him. *LOL* Or maybe I’d never, but treated him as just a very good friend. Anyway, I’m glad that he seems to be really enjoying the work that he’s doing, though no doubt, it’s no easy money.

2.46pm – Hmm… suddenly felt so old after looking at a related relative’s photo… she has aged… and got fatter… so have I… O.O”’ Ah!!!!!!! NO, NO, NO! I can’t be like that!!

4.38pm – Shhh… I love my lil’ hub. *giggles* *POOF!*

4.50pm – It’s nice to re-watch your own wedding montage. Furthermore, created by yourself… Hahaha… It’s always good to reminisce on the fun times back then. Reminds you on why you got married. Hmm… Shall I share it? ^^

Damn it. I was so slim back then… *CRY…*

5.09pm – Was reading this article on the 11 list of things you would regret in your 30s. One of which, I am VERY afraid that I would regret… that is, not saving enough for my retirement, if I ever retires. I suck at money management, and I admit it. I’m not even saving for the past year. But how…?

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Ramblings #0863

7.16am – Hmm… am awake before the alarm rings. Good morning.

7.32am – Oh. It’s here. That’s fast…

9.05am – Ah!!!! Someone’s caught in the carpark changing!!!!!! *LOL* Top only la… *LOL* Really, it’s so convenient to be a guy. Nobody cares when you change a top in the public, but whereas if it’s a female… Hmm…

9.16am – I am so FREAKING late for work.

10.13am – Sounds rude to be called by name + surname. *slightly irritated*

2.15pm – Back in the office. Erm… start doing work? Oh, no. I can rest till 3pm. *LOL*

2.28pm – And I was wondering where did that *piak* *piak* sound came from… the colleague sitting beside was apparently bursting the bubble wraps and had alerted another colleague too. Her comment? “It was very de-stressing.” Right… maybe to you… but not to me… *digging out the earphones*

3.51pm – You all shall die… *evil laughter* Okay, I’m not killing them literally but before they start killing me first (because of their stupidity), I need to save myself from it all, and implement this restriction. Sigh… almost yelled at one of them just now. Luckily I did hold back a little.

5.19pm – Just went to scare a colleague who dozed off in his seat. Better to be scared by me than taken photo by another department’s staff.

5.38pm – The lightning strikes and the thunder ROARS… Is this a little overkill? Or is there something in the sky that causes such anger?

5.40pm – WOW! That’s a STRIKE!! Damn… who is he trying to kill or scare?

5.45pm – It’s raining cats and dogs…

6.46pm – It’s a tad depressing to be hearing it again (this time round from a manager), stating that on the other side of the “island”, the people are not being rated fairly, but yet seems like nothing much can be done…

11.24pm – It’s equally heartbreaking as it is for me, as for you. Probably a lot more for me, to see her cry. But I don’t have a choice. I have to correct it now, while she’s still young, before it’s too late. I have the duty to guide her correctly (in my opinion). She’s my baby, my responsibility.

Here’s my baby, at almost 22 months old. Refusing to drink the milk that she’d requested just a while ago, and lied that she asked me to made it when I questioned her about it. All she did was cry… her usual way of escaping and refusing to do the things that she want. But alas, I’m neither her grandfather nor paternal grandmother (who will give in to everything that she wants), nor her maternal grandmother (who will probably give in after she cried for a long time), nor her dad & auntie (who probably don’t care so much as long as she stops crying).

I’m her mother. I’m a very patient person. I have good temper but doesn’t mean I don’t have a temper. I have a list of actions which I deemed not correct especially for a child who still can’t think for herself. I dote, but I don’t pamper (at least that’s what I kept reminding myself). If you did something wrong, I will discipline you. You wasted one whole bottle of milk, and worse still, you lied, and so you’ve lost your rights and privileges to do and play the things you’d want, till you admit your mistakes and correct it. Till then, I will still love you, but I won’t show it. I need you to understand (which I believe you do) what did you do that caused this result. I think you did, because after 10 minutes of crying and trying means and ways of wanting to do this and that (which I refused), you admitted that you asked me to make the milk, and requested to drink it. I let you, and got your granny to come in when you requested for it. And that’s because you admitted your mistakes, and thus you’ve gotten all your rights and privileges back.

It sometimes feels like I’m the only one disciplining you. But even if that is true, so be it.

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Ramblings #0862

9.16am – Alright, so I’m back in office, feeling fresh and pretty! *LOL* Okay, maybe not really for the latter, as fine lines are coming out after the few days of late nights. Well, it doesn’t matter for I’m feeling good. Agreed, it’s definitely important to take short breaks. Short enough to not disrupt your work, and long enough to get some decent rest. I won’t say that this break was splendid but it definitely break the normal mundane routine that I’d been having for the past year. Let’s hope I can plan for the next soon.

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Thoughts – Expecting an Overwhelming Month

Here I am, sitting in front of a computer and typing away (before this), once again. Not for my blog or anything which I planned to do, but for the business that the lil’ hub wanted to start while he just sat beside me, and biting his nails away… Hmm… my half day leave which I’d gotten to sort my own things out and take a break before tomorrow, is almost gone, just like that. *LOL*

Well, it’s going to be a harsh month ahead, even without reading the “luck” that Joey Yap wrote for my Day Master, for the month of April (lunar calendar).

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Work life being overwhelming? Yup, I can clearly see that coming, and thus the desperation to go for the holiday that was just over yesterday. And yup, it does seems impossible from what I see from here, if I want to do my office work, as well as the tons of things that I wanted to achieve for my own self. What’s more? My last module is starting next week. So I guess I can only take one step at a time, try and plan my things before execution each and everything.

So I better start to be a little more discipline in every aspect of my life, to have a better grab of the whole situation. I wouldn’t want myself to collapse. Exercise, TCM and sleep. The 3 basics that must be in my life for this period of time.

Breathe, dude, breathe.

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