Friday, January 22, 2021


We have a new president now which usually means an opportunity for different sectors of the economy.  Since I like to buy stocks and make a profit, I watch this closely.  No matter who is president,  I am an opportunist and am always looking for the next place to make money. 

Oil stocks--oil has historically done much better under Democrats. Oil was at an all time high under Obama.  I have quite a bit of energy stocks.  I'm hoping we see oil back in the $80 per barrel range.  If oil booms to this price again, it will bode very well for energy stocks.  

Health insurance stocks--Humana was up over 400% under Obama.  Since Biden doesn't support a single payer health system, I think we will see quite a lot of opportunity with health insurance profits. 

Financial Services--Janet Yellen is the Treasury Nominee.  Yellen's policy are pretty well known from her time as Former Chair of the Federal Reserve.  

Fast food--it is expected that more stimulus money will be pumped into the economy which I think will be good for the fast food market.  The model of only drive thru fast food places can be more profitable than having a restaurant where workers have to maintain the interior.  Fast food restaurants where I live are super busy. 

These are a few of the areas that I see opportunity.   Who knows?  I could be dead wrong with all of them.  Where do you see opportunity?  I like to hear on why people pick what stocks they are going to buy based on policy or behaviors that they see.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Menu for the Week

 Monday--steak with spaghetti veggie pasta salad 

Tuesday--my son has wrestling so DH and him will grab something, chicken Caesar salads for my daughter and me 

Wednesday--brats with buns and southwest lettuce salad

Thursday--whole chicken in the slow cooker with rice and veggies

Friday--probably frozen pizza.  I'm having dinner/drinks with a couple girlfriends

Saturday--I think I'm going to plan a family dinner out with bowling to use up a couple gift cards.  We have a gift card for a local restaurant and for the local bowling alley.

It was great to have a day off yesterday for Martin Luther King Jr day.  We all slept in until about 8:30.  In the afternoon, my friend asked for my kids to come over to play with hers.  They played for a couple hours.  When I went to pick them up, my friend and I ended up drinking a bottle of champagne.   It was lovely to catch up.  I feel so much better about life in general when I socialize more.  

Have a great week!

Sunday, January 17, 2021

How We Budget

I'm always curious how others budget so I thought I would write a post on how we do it.  My husband and I have been married for 16 years and we combined all finances within 2 months of getting married.  We have a joint checking and numerous savings accounts.  We are paid on the same days monthly, the 15th and end of the month.  All of our paychecks are deposited into one account.  

On each payday, I have a number of items to pay.   For the first paychecks, we pay for daycare (this used to be a huge expense), transfer to savings for large annual bills like life, auto and home insurance and property taxes, DH's phone bill, cable bill and a transfer to our investment account.  For the second paychecks,  we pay our mortgage, my phone bill,  electric bill, 529 accounts, transfer to our car savings account and transfer to our investment account.  After I account for those bills/transfers, I pay both of our credit card bills.  We both have our own credit cards that I pay.  I leave enough in our checking account to pay the credit card bills in one more week.  Between paychecks, I pay both of our credit cards again.  I do this so that our credit cards are paid off weekly.  After accounting for the credit cards, I transfer the rest to our savings.  I make sure to transfer to savings the day we are paid.  If I wait, that money could dwindle away on other things.

I could probably pay our credit cards in full monthly now but when we changed our spending over completely to credit cards versus debit cards,  I was worried that we wouldn't be able to afford the monthly payment so I set up this system of paying the cards weekly.  

I don't budget as closely as many people do but I track our spending sometimes.   It works better for me to pay ourselves first and not worry about the smaller details.  Since we share all of our money, I don't nitpick at DH about his spending.  He wouldn't do that to me because he doesn't know how much I spend.  I like paying all the bills and tracking everything (probably because I really like to be in control) so it works that our system falls on me.

We also talk about our larger goals and what we're doing with different financial things.  We accomplish more as a team that we do separately.   Our likely move is an example of our financial coordination.

How do you budget?  Do you use credit cards for discretionary spending?

Friday, January 15, 2021


I'm at work today at my regular job but I'm also taking care of some landlord items.  One of my tenants is 4 months behind on rent and has applied for rental assistance through the state for Covid relief.   She has kept me abreast of the situation but it's been a difficult process.  She had to apply with all of her documentation.   I had to log into a specific website and upload my landlord paperwork (LLC paperwork, bank info and W-4).  I did what I thought was my responsibility last month and still no payment.  I reached out to the tenant today and she just forwarded me a bunch of screen shots.  I called the number listed for the state office with her reference number.  I was then given a number for her case worker and emailed him.  Hopefully,  we can wrap this up soon.

I don't know the education level of my tenant but I would be surprised if she has any college.  This is a lot for her to take care of.  She's obviously smart but the documentation required for the Covid relief would scare off a lot of other people.  I don't mind working with her as long as she continues to be upfront with me.  The cops have been called to her place on two separate occasions.   The last occasion resulted in her then boyfriend with assault charges and a restraining order.  I tried talking to her about choices.   We will see if it continues.   I won't evict for non-payment during Covid but I also have to think of the neighbors if the cops are being called.   What to do?  This is the tough personal side of landlording that isn't all business.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Signed Offer

We received an offer late last night for the rental property that we have listed.  It was almost full price with us paying closing costs with a conventional loan with financing and inspection contingencies.   It's as good of an offer that we hoped for.  Being a negotiator,  I wanted to counter.  DH just told me to accept it and not to mess with the buyer.  If it were up to him, he would have accepted much less.  We signed the purchase agreement today so we are in contract.   

We put a lot of sweat equity into this one.  We will walk away with a profit of about $16,000 which will be taxed as capital gain.  Closing for this one will be March 1.

We have another property that we bought as a flip that is already under contract.  We close on that one on January 22.  Between the two properties,  we should net $180,000 as we own both outright.  We need that money for a down payment on our new house.

Rentals and flips can totally be a pain but they can also be profitable.   I prefer flips.  Actually, I just prefer making money and I don't mind giving up my weekends to work on projects.  I have my husband and kids with so its a family project.  My kids whine sometimes about the work but it's good for them to see us work hard for our money.  Plus, they are pretty good helpers.  

2021 is turning into the best year.  Things are really coming together 😀

Saturday, January 9, 2021

Beautiful Weather


This is a picture I took today of a small shed on our property.  We have had a hoarfrost for many days now.

Friday, January 8, 2021

Frugal Friday

I'm borrowing the idea for Frugal Friday from The Hawaii Plan.  She is always coming up with something new to save and it inspired me.

  • Called Old Navy and asked for a refund for the $7 expedited shipping because the package took a month for us to receive 
  • I called AT&T/DirecTV and asked for a reduction on my bill.  They gave me $30 off a month for 12 months.  Dang!
  • I went grocery shopping last evening and used both Ibotta and Fetch.  I saved $4.90 on Ibotta.
  • DH won my Fantasy Football league.  He won first place for a $120.  Not too bad considering the $20 to get in was already spent
  • We ate all meals at home after coming home from vacation on Sunday.  I just picked up some milk and basic produce for $26 instead of actually shopping on Sunday.  We need to use up our pantry and freezer in anticipation of moving.
What about you?  Were you frugal for the first full week of January?