Friday, June 30, 2006


I signed up for BzzAgent through Jane Dough some time ago. Today I signed up for a mini-campaign about Seth Minkin, an artist. Check out the link below for pictures of his work on BzzAgent.

10 Days Bzz Agent

BzzAgent is a really interesting company. They send you samples of stuff to promote (they call this participating in a campaign). And then give you points for telling people about the stuff. The points can be redeemed for merchandise related your campaigns. You choose what to promote, so it should only be stuff you're interested in.

Send me an email at calgirlfinance at if you're interested in finding out more.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

My Hobby Habits

I am a dabbler. Whenever I pick up a new hobby, I get really into it and want to do it all the time. However, I have a hard time keeping up the motivation. Previous hobbies of mine include knitting, making beaded jewelry, rubber stamping, card making & writing letters. This means I have a lot of materials to participate in the hobbies above. Currently I still enjoy card making and rubber stamping (mostly for card making). My problem with hobbies is I spend a decent amount of money on the hobby and then I lose interest.

Another hobby of mine is personal finance, however, I don't really like to get into the details of it. I really like reviewing my networth since it's on a positive track, but usually I am too busy or too lazy to keep good records. Yet for me, I know that the more I participate in something, the more I get out of it and the more I enjoy it (usually).

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Follow up to Pre-Marital Financial Information

Back in April, I posted about the financial information I knew about my future husband. I am happy to say that he is more of the clueless type, rather than the evasive type. He wasn't withholding information about his finances from me, rather he just didn't really know the information.

After some continued discussion, we decided that he should provide me with his past tax returns. While this is not a complete financial picture, it was something he could easily provide. He provided the information to me, allowing me to get a better sense of his financial picture. We joked that I was "auditing" him. One of the main things was I wanted to find out where all of his different accounts were. Unfortunately we do not have any accounts at the same institutions, which means someone will have to get used to a new company.

For me, it wasn't so much that I wanted to know everything about my fiance's finances. Rather I wanted him to be willing to share the information with me, even if it took some researching on his part.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

My Networth

One difference between myself and many of the pf blogs I enjoy reading is I typically don't disclose my numbers whereas they do. While I do not want to disclose my salary, the reason I do not disclose my networth on a regular basis is due to the fact that I do not calculate it as regularly as some others. Today I decided it was time to put the numbers into excel and see what came out.

I can't say that I'm pleased or displeased with the numbers. The recent stock market woes have put a dent in the numbers of many people. I am no exception. The last time I calculated my networth was in the beginning of May. At that time, I determined my hard dollar assets minus liabilities equaled $43,158.61. This number did have some estimates since I couldn't access either of my 401K accounts at the time.

Today my networth is $46,223.72. I am pleased with the positive jump, however, hidden in the positive jump is my investment losses. On a monthly basis, I normally save over $3000 (in my 401K, investment fund, emergency fund and wedding savings account). Since the period of change was over 3 paychecks, it shows about $1500 in investment losses.

Oh well, that's how it goes.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Is there a need for so many pf blogs?

Lately I have been thinking about the proliferation of personal finance blogs. I began my blog right around when the number of pf blogs seemed to explode. While I do get a decent number of hits (I average just under 30 a day), I wonder if the pf blog community is becoming too large. There any many blogs written by people with similar experiences at similar places in life. Is the space becoming too crowded? Are experienced old voices and promising new voices getting lost in the shuffle?

I have thought about whether my own blog adds any value to the stratosphere of the web. My conclusion on the status of pf blogging is the act of blogging is therapeutic. Blogging about my finances allows me to express myself and provides me with more accountability. It's true that I have not revealed all the specific details many other bloggers share on a monthly basis. However, I still feel the need to share specific ups and downs with my readers. Thus while my blog probably adds very little actual value to the community, it provides me (and hopefully some readers) with some insights, accountability, and information.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

How do you feel about your job?

Being a pretty young individual, I have only had two full-time jobs in my life. My current job as a consultant and my prior job working for one of the largest banks in the country.

Currently I like my job. I don't love it, but I appreciate it. The work is interesting, I get to work with great people, I face challenges every day, and I enjoy traveling.

I cannot imagine having a job that I absolutely love. If you have a job like that, what do you do and why do you love it so much?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


I first heard about the latte factor from David Bach. Since then, I have been much more aware of my expenditures on coffee. I do my best not to go to Starbucks, but I have been know to grab a coffee with a co-worker. The thing about my job is we get a meal allowance, so it seems that we shouldn't care about the money we spend at Starbucks. However, any money I do not spend, I get to keep. This morning I went with my co-worker to Starbucks, but I am happy to say that I didn't get anything. Yippee.

There are so many people in line in the morning every day. I cannot believe that there are 10-20 people in front of us all the time. I really feel that I should research investment into Starbucks' stock. It's seems that it should be have a high profit margin, it's addictive, and it's legal . . .

Monday, June 12, 2006

Wow . . . the NY Times has some great articles

Apparently this past Sunday, there was a special Sunday edition of The NY Times (go to the most emailed section). I went over to My Open Wallet to see if Madame X had made any comments yet. She hadn't had a chance to read the articles yet, but she did confirm for me that it was a special money themed Sunday magazine.

There are some great articles in there from student loan forgiveness to the economy in general. However, the article that really caught my attention was the one about online poker. The articled detailed the life of one college student who went so far as to rob a bank in order to pay back some of his debts. I could definitely see myself getting addicted to something like that. I believe I naturally have an addictive personality. Since I know this about myself, I haven't gotten too addicted to anything. I could see myself getting addicted to blogging, however, I don't have enough time to devote to it.

Friday, June 09, 2006

More Work = Less Time Devoted to Finances and Less Blogging

These past few weeks have been extremely busy at work, thus I haven't had a time to review my finances in some time. I get to work around 8 or 8:30, leave between 6:30 and 7:3o and typically need to do another 2 hours of work once I get home. If only I were hourly. =)

Well the good thing about my job is I typically have more free time on fridays. And for while my credit card balance for these past 2 months have been higher than normal (I still pay them off every month), somehow I have had more money in my checking account to pay those items off. Since I haven't devoted too much time to my finances, I'm not sure what's causing this fluctuation.

I kept on seeing interesting articles/surveys in USA Today about retirement this week. Some patterns I noticed . . .people are starting to save for retirement much earlier and younger people expect to retire earlier than those who are closer to retirement.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Internet everywhere

Earlier this week I received a Verizon wireless PC card (Kyocera KPC650) for my laptop. I'm not sure if most people know about this technology yet. It allows you to get internet access anywhere Verizon has a signal - all for one low feee of $60-$70/month (this is a corporate rate and paid for by my company). This is great since it means I will be able to go online every night! Before I had to pay for internet at my hotel so I didn't want to go on every night and pay the $10. I felt that I shouldn't do it if it wasn't business related. Now I can go on whenever I want -at my hotel, at the office, at the airport, at home, etc.