Hidden Fees

It has been a very long while since I have made a post, wondering if I should just abandon the blog all together and keep on keeping on with the craziness that is surrounding my spirit.

HIDDEN FEES the subject at hand. This is the hot topic because my husband and I just celebrated our 1 year anniversary and we took a long weekend trip to Miami. A great place to have fun, drink, eat, relax, people watch…. and spend more money than ever intended AKA raped.

I searched and searched for the greatest hotel, price matching and comparing and reading fine print and reviews. I googled, and I price lined, and I checked my travel mags and zagat mags. Because, i was going to find the best value for my buck. I was going to stay on budget, I was going to have a frugal vacation…. Yeah right.

First, we arrive at our amazingly beautiful hotel. (Hotel Urbano) Well, as soon as I pull the car up to check in a very fast and courteous man greets my husband and I, quick to help with baggage and produces a valet tag and a quick, that will be $29.00 a day for valet parking, thank you and vroom vroom, off he goes… uh wha.. wait…

Speaking to the front desk clerk, we ask her about the fee and if we could park somewhere else, for that would have been an extra $100 dollars we were not prepared to spend on just parking.  well… you could park on the street.. but don’t park here, here, or there because they will tow you. Or you could try to find parking over here… but just make sure that you read the signs very carefully.

Yeah okay.

Every restaurant already adds a surcharge of 18% tip and you have to carefully read your ticket or you wont see it and then give them another 18% or so again. That really isn’t the bad thing, the thing is the service in Miami sucks. They serve you like it is an inconvenience for them to be doing their job, so I am paying 18% if I like it or not for crappy service. Which is fine, to some degree, when I’m on vacation just trying to have a good time, drunk and hung over, but there are times when it is just unacceptable.

taxi cab rides… there is the normal fare.. but then once you get to your destination there is an extra dollar surcharge.

Miami is the one the city that you really do not get what you pay for… you pay for whatever they want to give you…

Besides hidden fees and horrible service though Miami is a unique and entertaining experience. An experience you must have at least once in your life. Just be prepared to understand how their city operates and don’t expect much for hospitality and you will have an amazing time.. especially shopping.

eye opening

I have started my climb back up to the land of budgets and frugalness. I have Bank of America and even though at times I hate them, they provide some good products that I utilize or at times hide from.  One of them is a budget and expense tracker, this really works and helps me to see where my money is disappearing to.

I pretty much use my debit card for everything that I purchase, hardly ever having cash at hand. So this weekend I set out on the scary task of allocating all my transactions to their correct bucket of expenses…. entertainment, utility bills, restaurants/dining, entertainment, clothing, credit cards…. blah blah blah. You get the point. So, very eye opening. It made me see how far off my budget I have drifted and how to find that course of spending less on crap and saving more for the things I always feel I don’t have money for. Including just putting money into savings period.

I have also been trying to find a good AP to use to help me save my receipts in my phone and alert me when certain budgets are close to being exceeded and such.

My biggest thing that I need to get back to is, bringing my lunch to work. I wasn’t cooking as much so I didn’t have left overs to bring in… but that is changing… lots of money spent on lunch every day… way too much spent on lunch everyday. I been spending on the low side… $150 a month just on lunch! which is crazy, especially for a while I spent maybe $40 bucks a month. I could do a lot of stuff with that extra $100 bucks in my pocket.

 

Well, I’m not going to go in detail of every place I have been over spending but I will let you know how this next few weeks turns out!.

complete neglect

I know I have completely neglected my blog. I am also, wondering should I scrap it all together and being fresh… But I think I do that a lot when I don’t want to deal with something. and neglecting my blog is not the root either. I’m neglecting my blog because I am neglecting my budget, my spending, my savings… should I go on? SO I need to do some soul searching. I found another great blogger that has been doing what I try and do and WOW!!! this really could be me if I just kept to my guns and stopped jumping off the wagon.

http://money.cnn.com/2011/01/14/pf/anna_newell_jones/index.htm?hpt=C2#TOP

 

So here is to keeping on keeping on and putting a little more effort in everything I have going on now.

 

We all need to get-away sometimes….

In keeping my promise of trying to be frugal and helping others to be, I get this weekly email that tells me the best travel deals for the week! I have found some really, really great deals too! My husband and I are really planning at least two BIG trips this year and Ireland is on the top of the list. Round trip tickets to Dublin starting at $450… and all-inclusive deals for $700 a person. I can’t go to Disney anymore without shelling out a few grand… and Ireland just sounds so much GRANDER!!!

http://www.shermanstravel.com/top25/?refer=top25-2010_12_08-trouble

ADHD and sleeping or lack there of….

This article provides some good information on sleep deprivation and ADHD or maybe masked symptoms of both.

http://www.everydayhealth.com/adhd/living-with/adhd-and-sleep.aspx?xid=ob_cc_adhd

And, to continue with being frugal… While speaking to my sons Doctor about some of his issues.. He told me that there is a pharmacy that provides discounted medications to people like me who supposedly make TOO much money.. But I can’t afford health insurance for my son and I seem to always to never have extra money. I’m sure that it is for all types of people. But if anyone is in my same boat… maybe worth finding out if there is one of these in your city as well.

 

Frugal Alert 10/19/10

So, it has been awhile since I have posted a frugal alert! But, it has been awhile since I felt that I found a GREAT DEAL!

Well, I have been wanting to re-upholster this old chair that I have and love but have been putting it off. Well, not so much putting it off I have been busy with other things, and I wasn’t going to spend hundreds of dollars to do it, so I was waiting for the right opportunity! Any WHo.. I did.

I had to run into Joanne’s yesterday looking for Crepe paper which does not exist where I live and thought hey check out the clearance rack. The clearance rack was not just the CLEARANCE rack it was a plus 50% more off the clearance rack !!! Wahoo! I found a few different fabrics that I fell in love with but had to settle on one. So the fabric was originally $26.00 a yard. It was marked down to $9.00 a yard and then 50% off that yes I did! I bought great fabric for $4.50 a yard. I bought 3 yards and so a grand total of….. dun dun dun….. $$13.40

So, I have to run back before the sale ends on the 23rd, because I need new foam for the seat cushion and that’snot the cheapest stuff to buy, but If I can walk away with a brand new looking chair for less than $50 I will be a VERY VERY happy FRUGAL chick! I will have to put up pictures of said chair, because it is fabulous and I haven’t done anything to it. I seen one just like it in the pottery barn mag for like $500 dollars! SO PB eat your heart out and weep!

 

I better save my trash talk for after I finish my project… I don’t want to jinx the situation! Patience is so a virtue!

What is Frugal?

So, like I stated I am jump starting my frugal attempts. Which means also, budgeting and saving a little piece of the pie each month. I’m great at finding deals and looking for bargains, but at the end of the day is that being frugal when I still spend all my money and nothing is in the savings account?
frugal [ˈfruːgəl]
adj
1. practising economy; living without waste; thrifty
2. not costly; meagre
[from Latin frūgālis, from frūgī useful, temperate, from frux fruit]

Well, from that definition, I guess I can be frugal and still be broke. As, long as I am not wasting anything.. I’m frugal.
Ok – well, How can I be frugal and be a money saver? I guess wasting money could count as not being frugal. hhhhmmmmmm

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