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Gift Certificate-paresis? What’s that?


What exactly is “gift certificate-paresis”?

Maybe there is an actual word for this condition, but for now, I will use “gift certificate-paresis”. “Paresis” is the medical suffix for “slight paralysis” which I found at Study Shack.

It occurs when you receive a gift certificate as a gift. You are excited to get the gift and are grateful, but when it comes time to spend it…you freeze. You don’t know what to buy!!

Here you have in your hand essentially free money, and you don’t know what to get. I once spent 1/2 hour in Walmart trying to find something to buy with at $10.00 gift certificate. But, if I go in there normally, I can easily spend $50.00 on essentials.

Why does that happen? Are some of us so uncomfortable with spending “free money” that we just do not know what to spend it on? Maybe for some of us the thought of spending the money on whatever you want just is too much to comprehend.

Sometimes, the human mind is very interesting πŸ™‚

Article included in the Nineteenth Festival of Frugality over at Punny Money.
Technorati Tags: gift+certificate, spending+money

What This Power is I Cannot Say …


I posted a quote on determination a few days ago, and a comment left by Hazzard at Everybody Loves Your Money reminded me of another quote (thanks for jogging my feeble memory :). It’s one that I wrote in the card I gave my niece when she graduated from high school. I haven’t seen her in some time – I wonder if it made an impact on her life it did me when I first read it. I hope everyone likes it as much as I do.

“What this power is I cannot say; all I know is that it exists and it becomes available only when a man is in that state of mind in which he knows exactly what he wants and is fully determined not to quit until he finds it.”

– Alexander Graham Bell

Technorati Tags: determination, quote

To Blog or Not to Blog …


I recently joined a work-at-home-mom blogging network and our topic to blog about is

Why do you blog and what are your blogger goals?

For me, I started Blogging Away Debt to keep track of my progress as I become debt-free. I also am using it to get my thoughts out there on the best way to reduce my debt and to invite others to share their thoughts. Along the way, I will share the success stories as well as my mistakes.

It’s hard putting everything out there for all of the world to see. And I have decided to put it all out there, down to what my family spends money on. I’m working on those reports as I speak. If somehow my blog helps someone else in a financially dire situation, I will feel like a million dollars.

I believe I bring a different perspective to the personal finance blogging arena, since my family is living paycheck to paycheck and probably will be until the credit card debt is paid off. The choices pertaining to finances are different than those who have more leeway with their checkbook. But the last time I read – 70% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.

There are also ideas and theories that I believe are valid for paycheck to paycheck families. I have yet to unleash them on my blog – because they need to be written perfectly so that everyone can understand what I am talking about. They also go against the norm so I have to make sure my argument is solid.

I may just be one voice, but I hope that somehow my words on my blog may give others hope and inspiration. I really believe that I will achieve financial freedom. I have had a heck of a rocky start, but I know it will happen.

And I will blog about it every step of the way πŸ™‚

Technorati Tags: blog, debt, wahm

My Plan has been Foiled!


If you read the post before this one, I wasn’t sure what credit card to pay using my overpayment refund, but a master plan was brewing in my mind (muwahaha).

I was ready and raring to go and to pay off Credit Card #4 and wait for a nice balance transfer option to then use towards Credit Card #2. But then I looked in my mailbox today and received a balance transfer offer from Credit Card #4:

4.9% until September 2006 – and has a balance transfer fee of $50.

Only 4 months at the lower rate PLUS a balance trasfer fee. Given the short timeframe of the interest rate and the fee – it probably isn’t worth it to send my refunds to that card. Perhaps I should just pay it all towards Credit Card #2??

If anyone has a few words of wisdom to share, that’d be great πŸ™‚

Technorati Tags: credit+card, credit

Now, the Question is…Who Should Get the $5,600?


I received my overpayment refund from Credit Card #3. Now, the question is … who should get it?

Credit Card #2 appears to be the logical choice. There’s $22,041.93 sitting on that card at 16.49% (the highest rate of all of my cards). You may be wondering why I am even contemplating another choice.

Well, my overpayment refund combined with my tax refund will be enough to pay off Credit Card #4 completely. That balance is sitting there at 14.9%.

What I am thinking of doing is using my refunds and paying off Credit Card #4. As they have always done in the past, they have offered great balance transfer offers (usually around 2.9 – 4.9% for 6-12 months) when my balance is low. They “should” do that again if the card is paid off.

So, the two scenarios are

$8,000 at 4.9%
$14,000 at 16.9%.


$8,000 at 14.9%
$14,000 at 16.9%

But what if Credit Card #4 doesn’t offer a great balance transfer rate? Is it a good enough chance to take?

Any advice for the debt-fighting newbie?

Technorati Tags: credit+card, debt, credit

If I Had a Nickel …


How many times have you heard, “If I had a nickel … (and then something like – for every time blah, blah, blah)”.

I’ve heard that alot, and here’s my latest one:

If I had a nickel for every time I’ve goofed up on my road so far to become debt free, I’d be a millionaire.

Okay, so I haven’t goofed up that much – but I have made some blunders.

Like the time I initiated a balance transfer to the wrong credit card.

Or, like the time I paid my credit card late by one day.

Or, like the time my husband received an inheritance and it was spent unwisely.

The point I’m trying to make is that we ALL make mistakes. Just learn from those mistakes and don’t make them again. Reducing your debt is not an easy thing to do. If it was, there wouldn’t be so many of us blogging to track our progress to get rid of it. Just pick your head back up, look straight ahead at your goal, and reach it.

Now, will I ever enter in the wrong credit card number when doing a balance transfer again? You bet yer britches I won’t! πŸ™‚

*Article included at the Carnival of Debt Reduction #31 at Canadian Capitalist
Technorati Tags: debt, credit+cards, debt+reduction

Sharing a Quote on Determination


“A determined soul will do more with a rusty monkey wrench than a loafer will accomplish with all the tools in a machine shop.”

– Robert Hughes

You can have all the tools in the world, but they will not mean a thing if you lack determination. And it has to be true determination – the kind that you feel from your heart and you feel in every inch of your body. I truly believe that with determination, you can make things happen.

Technorati Tags: quote, motivation