I’m so full of steak

Life has been pretty busy lately since my friend gave me her bad news last week. She loved the flowers.

Things are going well over here. I am in week 5 of my Kayla workouts and I am seeing changes, which is great. When I did this routine last  year, I got to the end of week 7 before going to Bonnaroo and then Hawaii, which is around the time I fell off. That means I have 3 weeks to get myself to where I was last time we hit week 7, or even better.

So, to help things along, I am working out 5 days a week. I do Kayla 3x a week and cardio at least twice a week when not doing Kayla. I would like to workout 6x a week, but 5 is my goal for now. I am also, this week, eating mainly only protein. It’s a quick way to drop some bloating and get myself away from carbs. I did however eat too much last night… my steak for dinner was way too big and I’m like still full. I’m definitely not going to lose weight if I gorge myself on red meat.. but it was delicious.

Lastly, I am not drinking alcohol until Brendan’s birthday. That would be a 12 day hiatus, which will be the longest I’ve gone in awhile. I want to see how I physically change w/o booze. My face will thin further and I won’t be bloated. I think I’ll get to bed early and wake up earlier (I’m still waiting on that), and I’ll save money. But all of that is secondary to how it’ll help my progress.

Truly I wanted to be alcohol free for all of April, but I drank on Easter and last Friday because Mark came home and we went out. My friend was like, “Ché! What about BK’s birthday???” And she’s right – I want to go out that night. So we’ll stick to 12 days, break for Brendan, and then jump back on.

My plan is to also weigh myself on Brendan’s birthday and see where I’m at…. I have a goal in  mind and I also am horrified of weighing myself, so all of that fear and terror combined will hopefully keep me on track.

Also, I am not smoking. I really think I’m going to die of lung cancer. I smoked for soo long. I literally can not smoke anymore because I feel like I am choosing to die and I really don’t want to die! I am going to get a physical sometime this year and hopefully they will tell me if I’m dying or not.

So Britt and I are extending our lease through the end of June. We didn’t know we could do that, and as Mark put it, it’s a blessing.

1) Brittany and Eric want to move into a one-bedroom in our complex, but nothing is available until July 1st. With a May 31st move-out date, the two weren’t sure what to do. Britt desperately didn’t want to rent a storage unit, transport everything out of the apt, move into my Mom’s house and then move everything back a month later. What a hassle that would be.

2) Mark is working, and will be working until late May. His plan was to leave Hawaii the week we were moving, but that meant he would be running around like a crazy person trying to pack, help me pack and move everything in. We still need to get a couch and other furniture, and we haven’t even had an opportunity to walk through anywhere. Plus I’ve been searching for a while and haven’t found anything I love.

By moving our date back a month, Mark will be home and able to look at apartments with me, pick out furniture and pack everything up without also needing to run back and forth to work for weeks at a time. It’s just been too much to juggle. Britt can stay in the apartment for another month and then move everything two buildings over, which is a lot easier. It’s the perfect solution.

So I’ve stopped looking at apartments for now, which I’m grateful for! I’ll start again in May. Also, this means by the time we have our lease signed in June, I’ll know if I’m getting a raise and a bonus, so I’ll be able to better budget and plan for everything we need to buy.

We have a Bwood family reunion Memorial Day weekend in Maryland. Mark’s coming!! Hopefully, anyway. I’m excited. He really loves me and I love him. I am seriously on cloud 9 with him lately. I just don’t know how we got so lucky. Truly blessed by this person.

Also, his resume is made and the job search is on. I am so glad to hear he is happy to leave and ready to move on. This has been a long time coming. I had a mini melt down on Easter, and I told him everything I was feeling. He responded so amazingly well. Now, we are creating a plan and moving forward and I think there is a lot of good coming our way.

I have plans this weekend but I have already decided to cancel all of them.

Happy Wednesday


A crass attempt at budgeting

I filed my taxes yesterday with my Aunty Chacha, who does my taxes every year. I’m getting $1,071 back. I feel like everyone I know is always getting thousandin returns. but they must have more withholdings during the year. I’m just happy to be getting a refund at all; for several years while waitressing and in the first years of my other job, I always owed money.

I should have $5,000 coming to me in the next week or so. Let’s do a budget breakdown for fun:

Monthly Costs

  • Car Payment: $200
  • Car Insurance: $110
  • Rent: $685
  • Electric: ~$100
  • Cable/Internet: ~$100
  • Cell: $60
  • Credit Cards: ~$300
  • Gas: ~$300 (much lower right now- nearly half-, but let’s estimate for when it goes back up)
  • Tolls: $88
  • Groceries: ~$400 (inflated for more expensive months)
  • Savings: $400

Total: $2,293

That leaves me with a surplus of just over $1,500 a month or so… I’m guessing on my weekly take home for now.

So this month, I should have an excess  of $2,707 (after I receive my refund and a paycheck for God’s sake). I don’t know what I’ll do with it- Put more into savings… perhaps a grand? Or put it toward credit cards to try and get those under control. Or just leave it in my checking to start saving there. Let’s look at upcoming expenses with the June move:

  • 1.5 month security deposit: $975
  • 1 month rent $650
    • Numbers are assuming our rent is $1,300, and factoring in the split with Mark.
    • Total by May: $1,625
  • New Mattress and Box Spring: $1,200
    • A quick search found me this pillow top mattress. I don’t plan on spending any more on it.
    • Total by June (split with Mark): $600
  • New Couch: $1,100?
    • I told Britt she and Eric could take the couch and Mark and I would buy a new one because, I’d like a better one. Between Mark and I, I think we can afford a couch and we should – it’ll be with us for a long time. A quick search on sectionals brought up this, which  I like.
    • Total by June (split with Mark): $550

TOTAL BY JUNE: $2, 775

I think we have enough stuff to get started outside of the couch and mattress, so we wouldn’t need to buy everything right away. Plus there’s plenty we can salvage and get for cheap, those are just two things we’ll need to get right away. My mattress sucks- it’s uncomfortable and squeaky- and his is awesome but only a full. We need a queen. He spoke about getting a king, but once he sees the price tag I’m sure he’ll be happy with the Q. Plus, I already have the bed frame.

Other expenses that are coming up in August:

Vegas Vacation: I would like to have, after airfare and hotel, $1,000. I doubt I’d spend all of that – it’s just a long weekend- but let’s make that the goal. Falling short is okay.

Estimated Flight: $600  (That’s an inflated estimate from the very cheap prices now, bc it’s so far away- hoping to buy early enough to be able to get a decent price)

Estimated Stay: $450 (Not planning on paying more than $150 a night and I think it’ll only be 3 nights and 4 days)

Total: $2,050

So my total savings for this summer that I would need, not counting if I go to Hawaii or not, is: $4,825

I think my vegas costs are very inflated, but let’s say I want  $5,000 of surplus money in my checking account come June in order to pay all my moving costs and a vacation without feeling the pain- then I should continue to live on my strict budget, continue putting money into my savings (and never touch it) and just let my checking account hold more and more.

That’s rough- I like to spend and when I have money I suddenly need so much stuffff.

But I think this is doable- I said I will have on average an excess of around $1,500 a month. So let’s count:

Jan + Feb + March + April + May = Excess of $7,500.

But that number will be smaller seeing as I will be going out to dinner, or movies, or just doing “Entertainment” as Mint.com would say. Regardless- that means I should be very capable of savign enough money to do everything I want this summer, if I am just smart. Plus groceries and gas aren’t that expensive. But maybe I miscalculated my weekly earnings after withholdings, 401k and benefits.

Well that was a fun waste of time. Back to work.

My Big Sista was Big’s Sista

I was approved to join the Big Brother Big Sister program at my firm!

I’ve wanted to do BBBS for a year or so now, but it’s a serious time commitment, and with my commute and uncertainty about where I would end up working, I just couldn’t do it. I didn’t want to be the asshole who leaves some fatherless kid on the stoop with a melted ice cream cone, all because I had to use my one Saturday afternoon to go to the DMV and get my eyebrows waxed. I didn’t want to do it unless I could truly commit.

There’s a program here where you meet with your Little twice a month, but the school actually shuttles them to my office. It’s during work hours, so I just go downstairs. How convenient!

I’ve felt the need to give back for a long time now, and to do so in a way that is not focused on ME is ideal. Otherwise, I’m just a selfish person who works and has a few friends and a boyfriend and doesn’t do anything of real, true substance. Websites are not real. TV is not real. This will be real.

So anyway- that process begins soon. I need to apply to the organization and go through an interview process… and then we start in February.

I hope my kid likes me. Gosh I think I’ll be more nervous my first day as a BBBS mentor than I was for my first day of actual work. And of course; this matters more.


Kevin Smith tonight with Johnny! I’m excited. He called me at school- I was planning on calling him too which is coincidental- but he was like “There’s shit goin down.” And I was like, oh damn, leigha gossip. But he continued “Have you been on Twitter?” “No” “Well Kevin Smith has a show tonight in Philly and there’s tickets left. I’m saying let’s go, it’s only $40.. take some time to thi-” “Fuck it! Let’s go.” “Yeah? You’re down?” “Why the hell not!”

I never get to go but seriously let’s go. I got a midterm back today. It was on 2 short stories I hadn’t read. I got a 92. So I’m feeling invincible and like the reading I was planning on doing today can wait.