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A/C Outage


You know when is NOT a good time for the A/C to go out in Tucson?

Now. Pretty much now is not a good time.

I knew there was a problem first thing when I woke up in the morning. We set the A/C to 76 degrees for overnight (higher during the day), but it showed that it was 81 degrees inside. Uh-oh. I heard the fan running, but when I went outside I saw the unit was clearly not on. I double-checked the thermostat to make sure it was truly set to “cool” and not just to fan only. It was, indeed, on the right setting.

Luckily, the A/C is basically brand new. The entire HVAC system was replaced when we bought the house just a couple years ago so all the parts and unit and everything are covered by warranty. I’d need to double-check but the installation and labor may still be covered under warranty, too. The bad news is, since this is warranty work, we have to use the same company as originally installed it. And they can’t come out until at least 5pm this evening….maybe later. Gulp. It’s going to be a long, hot day!

A couple of “bright sides” …..at least this happened on a day when the high is “only” 100 degrees (in Tucson, we regularly get up into the 110’s during summer). And at least this happened on a day when the kids are in camp so we aren’t all stuck sitting miserably inside the burning hot house. And at least (HOPEFULLY) *fingers crossed* whatever the issue is should be covered and not cost us an arm-and-a-leg since the unit is still so new. We had a bad monsoon a few days ago with flooding on the side of our house where the unit is located, so we’re wondering if that might have caused some blockage or other issue with the unit??? Although…..not sure that would be covered since that’s “nature” and not a manufacturer’s defect??? No idea. At this point, we’re crossing our fingers and hoping for the best and saying a little prayer that the repair folks will be out this evening and be able to fix the unit without a long delay or the need to order additional parts, etc.

In the meantime….I need to do some quick thinking to change up our dinner plans. I’d planned a sausage and veggie sheet-pan meal (in the oven), but ain’t no way I’m going to be heating my house up like that. Time for Plan B: Quick thaw some chicken to throw in the crockpot so I don’t have to use the oven or stove!

What’s a favorite crock-pot meal (preferably with chicken breasts, as that’s what I’ve got on hand)?

Don’t you just love how the A/C always goes out at the hottest time of summer (I mean, I know that’s when it’s working hardest and all…..but it still stinks!)

Starting The Month Off Right


Talk about starting the month off right! March is a 3-paycheck month for me (anyone else?)

In the past, we’ve been able to put the entire extra paycheck toward debt. But right now we’re still in a situation where we’re totally out of money before the month is over, and scrambling to pay bills that are due at the beginning of the next month. We’re still working on budgeting, in general.

It’s very stressful and not very fun. So I decided that with my third paycheck, instead of making extra debt payments, I’d create a bit of a buffer in our budget by pre-paying some of our bills that are due in early April. It may not be the most fun way to spend extra money, but it makes me feel good to be starting off April on the right foot!

I logged into my bank account’s bill pay center and paid for our phone (due 4/1), Citibank credit card (due 4/4), Wells Fargo credit card (due 4/5), and childcare (due 4/10).  I’ve also set a chunk of money aside because I plan to mail a large check to pay the remaining balance of our 2017 property taxes (payment must be post-marked by 5/1, but I’m planning to make the payment on 4/13).

The third paycheck month is coming just at the right time to help create some breathing room in our budget, especially with our property tax payment coming due. Usually, I get a lot of satisfaction out of making those extra debt payments, but I think this time the money is well spent in creating a bit of a buffer for us. It reminds me of when we used YNAB to live on last month’s income. It took awhile to build up the extra, but it helped alleviate so much stress due to budget and/or income fluctuations. I think this will be a goal we’ll have. Trying to get back to living on last month’s income again.

Was March a 3-paycheck month for you? What do you typically do with your third paycheck on 3-paycheck months?