Sunday, April 30, 2006

Starin' at the sun...

Here is a shot of my school. I don't remember where I was on campus when I took it.

Blah Blah... and another blah. I think I should have skipped the more than generous helping of jelly belly jellybeans I had a little while ago. This blows popcorn kernels. The slippery suckers are now floating right in the pit of my stomach. Ughhhhh.. sugar dumps.

But I digress ;-)


Hubby found a total of $0.51 in the form of two quarters and a penny. I didn't find anything because I've been home reading Emily Mann plays for my War Texts class. Fortunately I cooked dinner early so I don't have to do it in a rush. I am updating the total and resuming my fun filled day under the covers with Miss Mann and some other obscure texts from the likes of RP.

Total Cash Found Today: $0.51
Total Since Blog Inception: $68.43

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Have you had your oil checked?

Oy vey! First off, I must say that I feel positively 100000% better now that I have finally made my way back to the gym. Today was Day Four (It takes me Thirty days to make something a habit) and I have made it back to the hour long cardio resistance. Mister Krabs and I went to the gym, walked around a huge mall twice (both floors), and did a three mile hike to the video store. I am quite proud of him because he is recuperating far beyond expectancy. While we didn't do much except for walk around, it felt great to get out- great times, great company.


FYI: The mall is always a good place to spot loose coinage (especially on the weekends). Today we found a whopping $1.15 in the form of two quarters, four dimes, two nickels, and fifteen pennies (seven rather fugly ones included!). The first dime was found on the way to the New Jersey Turnpike. The next find was three pennies right next to our vehicle (ka-ching!) One quarter was uncovered by Momma Krabs (who has fitfully joined in the changepot adventure as well) over by the food court. The rest of the change minus one nickel and nine cents was found by the elevator. Our walk to the video store gave us a total of fourteen cents.


Picture this, if you will:

Whilst on our journey through the mall, Mister Krabs spots a quarter in the GAP store display. Had it been a penny, a nickel, even a dime.. I'm sure he would have not made such a stink.
Dude, it's a quarter.
A quarter. . A quarter still buys a bag of chips. A quarter can buy you five pieces of super hard bazooka bubble gum. Hell.. a quarter still grants a pull on a lucky slot machine (that's only if YOU are lucky of course).
He walked into the store and explained to the lady that our Kit Krabs dropped a quarter and it rolled into the display. I keep walking out of pure shock. Mom starts laughing because, quite frankly, it is freaking hilarious to see his tenacity in action. Moments later, Hubby emerges from the store victorious. Quarter in hand and with a grin as wide as the cheshire cat, he strolls over and hands it to me as though it were the holy grail.

Okay so he needs a new hobby that doesn't involve spending money, strippers, or making really overweight store employees hop over a barricade to access a quarter that totally didn't belong to him. I LOVE AMERICA!

Total Cash Found Today: $1.15
Total Since Blog Inception: $67.92

Friday, April 28, 2006

Cobb Salads, Leg Cramps, and a cool breeze.

The picture to the left is of a loveable california seal at the New York Aquarium. Come see him do his tricks and show off for a limited time.... you'll be glad you did!

I love Spring. The colors come back... the birds chirp happily... it's like life begins all over again. I managed to buy a can of wildflower seeds for a buck (TARGET) which I'll plant as soon as I finish this update. Today we got both our vehicles inspected so that relieves some of the duties that had to get done before next week. All in all, today is one of those days which makes you feel all warm inside. I am happy to be here... aren't you? You should try the Cobb Salad at McDonald's- I am quite impressed :)


Today's finds were a bit sparse. We found a total of $0.29 in the form of one quarter and four pennies. The first penny came from the gym parking lot. Two other pennies were picked up at the Mall (errand running). The final penny was uncovered in the drive thru of Micky D's and the quarter was waiting for us at a local department store. I am not sure if we'll go out any more today.. perhaps a pm stroll again... Quien Sabe?

Total Cash Found Today: $0.29
Total Since Blog Inception: $66.77

Thursday, April 27, 2006


I have been blessed by marrying the greatest man on earth. He has all the qualities I want and could ever need... and I love him completely. Enough mushy mushy talk- I'll spare you the details and move on to today's challenges.


Today we found a total of $0.65 in the form of three dimes, one nickel and thirty pennies. Our finds didn't begin until much later in the afternoon- say around two thirtyish. We found the first 15 pennies during our afternoon stroll and the rest of the change was found all over campus. Hubby and I took a nice leisurely stroll after our gym routine (it's our cool-down).

Total Cash Found Today: $0.65
Total Since Blog Inception: $66.48

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Back to the grill again...

To the world, this seems like a simple plant blooming ever so slowly on these last rain-kissed days of April. To me, this is food. Yes ladies and gents... Mrs. Krabs is going back to the diet (greenleaf) days. Yecch. I packed on alot of weight in the winter (hibernation mode) and now it's time to shake some of it off. How did it happen, you ask? Well.. I didn't want to go to the gym. I had a wounded Mister Krabs to look after as well. I won't blame the gain on my scale being misaligned or anything other than my mouth connecting with junk food at all hours of the day. It's time to take accountibility for my actions and fix the error before it gets worse.


Today we found a total of $0.32 in the form of one dime and twenty two pennies. I have a feeling the changepot above 50 cent streak finds are going to be alot harder to come by. We haven't walked our country mile yet and with school tonight I doubt I'll have a chance to do so. But back to the finds... Two of the pennies were actually found last night during a late run for milk at the local Piggly Wiggly. I am counting them in today's totals because quite frankly, I'm too lazy to go edit yesterday's post lol. Two pennies were found in the gym parking lot- an unusual place to find change in these parts. The remaining twenty eight cents were all found on campus. The rare find on this day was a stash of pennies near a vehicle. Apparently the owner cleaned out his cupholder and left the zinc-copper coins on the ground just for us yayy! The dime was spotted as Mr. Krabs was driving away. That's it- I'm calling him Hawkeye from now on.

As I headed toward my classroom, I thought about how much times have changed. Pennies are no longer accepted in ANY hopper-anywhere. Long gone are the days of the penny gumballs and twenty cent phone calls. I remember carrying a whole heap of pennies to school and paying for my ten cent box of lemonheads with it. Heck, I remember paying for a small bag of swedish fish with a handful of pennies.

Total Cash Found Today: $0.32
Total Since Blog Inception: $65.83

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


Today started out kinda yucky- until the sun made an appearance. I've been cleaning up my computer desk area (shredding, tossing etc) and I can't tell you how nice it is to actually see the wood pattern.


Mrs., what if I told you that your every conflict,
disappointment, struggle or challenge, with others or
yourself, was merely a manifestation of what's going on
within your own thinking... would you go there first to
fix, mend, and allay?

Yeah, you might miss the drama.

The Universe
The comment above hit me like a ton of bricks this morning. It is a wake-up call for people (like myself) who believe in the law of attraction.
So far, we found 49 cents in the form of one quarter, one dime and fourteen pennies. Hubby found 26 cents in a department store, a dime while picking up DD, three pennies while walking Stitch, and ten pennies around the mall. The earliest coin found was a 1962 penny in fairly good condition.
Total Cash Found Today: $0.49
Total Since Blog Inception: $65.51

Monday, April 24, 2006

Nusimatics anyone?

My tan is fading! Waaaah!!! The legendary tan that made my face look like I played with mud in the dark is peeling. Nothing beats having twenty different shades on your face! I didn't do much today except clean house, spruce up my favorites, and plan out the rest of the week's travails.
My two outings weren't as long as I'd liked- thanks to my uber-fiber breakfast snacks- but they were profitable nonetheless.

Here's a lil' joke courtesy of the kittster:

Mommy... Knock Knock.
who's there?
Boo who?
Awwh- don't cry mommy.

(It's much cuter with a preschool lisp!)


I've found a new hobby. Mom hooked me up with some cool coins which I plan to have cleaned and inspected. These were coins that were given to her by her mom so it's got to be worth something (I hope?) So now on top of gardening and crochet, I'll add nusimatics to the list.


Altogether we found a total of eighty cents today in the form of three quarters and five pennies. The first find was two quarters while Hubby ran his work-related errands today. Later on we both found four ugly pennies while walking the kittster around campus (trying to tire her out-yeah RIGGHT!!!) . One of them turned out to be a 1952 wheat penny which I might try to clean later on. I spotted the fifth penny near Gino's Pizzeria (quite possibly the worst pizza I've ever had the displeasure to eat) and the remaining quarter was found on the way back from my monthly eyebrow waxing at the local vietnamese (not chinese!!) nail place. Mrs. Krabs used to get tips done but she realized that long nails impede change collection ;) .

Total Cash Found Today: $0.80
Total Since Blog Inception: $65.02

Much love... and a bit of retro dig'ums from the past.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Sunday woes...

This pic was taken on the way home from Sunday mass. Kitty in the sky (sans diamonds).
It's two pm and the rain makes it feel like it's five or six. Just got back from running a few errands and I'm happy to report that the Krabs have found $0.52 in the form of one quarter, two dimes, and seven pennies. Mister Krabs gave a dime to Pearl because she couldn't go with him. She has her own changepot which has some decent coinage in there. Her jar began earlier this year (March 2005) and already she is at $2.75! I am very proud of her and her new efforts to keep up with the change race.

I think i'll take a nap since the majority of the Krabs look sleepy. Here are the totals since I doubt we'll be going back out today.

Total Cash Found Today: $0.42
Total Since Blog Inception: $64.22

Love Hate/Penny Peeves


Oh my gosh! I was playing around the net and stumbled across this entry on craigslist. I never knew people hated pennies.

best of craigslist > s.f. bayarea > Pennies.Originally Posted: Fri, 11 Nov 09:25 PST
email this posting to a friend


Date: 2005-11-11, 9:25AM PST

Are we done with the f**king pennies yet? Because it is time. The American public hasn’t been using them for about a decade. They have become so worthless, that people give them to each other as a matter of routine. Get your change, pick out the pennies, and leave them there for the next guy. Need a penny or two? Well, there should be a few there for you, because the last guy sure as f**k didn’t want his. That’s the game. I hate when stores don’t want to play by the game. If a store doesn’t have a little tray, I am immediately annoyed. The hell if I’m fishing another dollar out of my pants because it came to $5.02. When that cash register rings up $5.02 and you look at me, we’re fixing to have a long staredown. I’ll return an item before I break another dollar and let you give me three more of the f**king things in return. And that item probably had a profit margin of at least $.03 to you, so who’s the loser now? Get it? As long as they’re still around, you better play by the game. When there is no tray, my normal routine has become to fish through my change and immediately pick them out and deposit them into the trash. Not only are they worthless, but they are disgusting, and I’m not carrying them around. Most have been in circulation for 20 years, and as the stepchild of your change purse, they have been given no love. They live in ashtrays, parking lots, and huge jars owned by 72 year old men who remember when they were worth something. Old copper is gross enough to start with. Add to the fact that they are covered in gum and shit and filth, and you need to wash your hands every time one touches you. Think about this: a stamp costs $0.37. 37 pennies weigh 6 ounces. It takes about two stamps to mail 6 ounces of stuff. Therefore, if I wanted to mail someone 37 cents in pennies, it would cost me 74 cents. By my definition, it’s pretty clear cut. When a monetary unit can’t afford to mail itself, it’s worthless. Don’t get all cocky either, nickels…….you aren’t far behind. (I don’t really know how much 37 pennies weigh, that was just a guess. I have a scale in my office, and would find out, but I can’t. I threw out all my f**king pennies. Just trust me though….I’m right on this general principal. I know by instinct that they can’t mail themselves.) Vending machines won’t even take them. They hired engineers to assure that any penny which entered the slot would be immediately routed straight to the change opening. Think about the engineering involved. Dimes, which are smaller than pennies, go right into the till, but they had to create some sort of mechanism that would sort out and eliminate any penny that enters the machine, lest they get involved with the REAL money that is in there, and gross it all up. Have you ever tried to give one to a bum? Seriously. I almost got in a fight in San Francisco over the fact that I gave a bum some pennies. The man had no home, was hungry, cold, and hopeless, yet when I gave him a handful of pennies, he tried to spit on me. Fortunately, his lack of front teeth seriously affected his aiming abilities and I easily dodged the saliva-based projectile, but nonetheless. Isn’t this enough evidence for Alan Greenspan and the Fed to say enough is enough? I now summarize my case:
1. Pennies are considered worthless, even by homeless people
2. Pennies are disgusting
3. Pennies can’t even mail themselves
4. Americans are actually giving them to strangers, like some nationwide game of hot potato
5. Vending machines are even too smart to take them. Their job is to take money, not pennies.

Case Closed. Please, Federal Reserve, I beg you. End the game. I’m done with the f**king pennies.

Sully 110504612

And now, some positivity for my Pennyphiles:

The U.S. one-cent coin is 19 millimeters in diameter and weighs 2.5 grams.
The composition of the penny is 97.5% zinc and 2.5 % copper.
There have been 11 different designs featured on the penny.
The U.S. Mint produces over 13 billion pennies annually.
There are over 130 billion one-cent coins currently in circulation.
Since its beginning, the U.S. Mint has produced over 288.7 billion pennies. Lined up edge to edge, these pennies would circle the earth 137 times.
The average penny lasts 25 years.
The most "expensive" penny is a rare one minted in 1793. Only four are known to exist today and their worth is estimated at more than $275,000.
An average of 1,040 pennies are produced every second, adding up to 30 million a day.
During its early penny-making years, the U.S. Mint was so short on copper that it accepted copper utensils, nails and scrap from the public to melt down for the coins.
The Lincoln penny was the first U.S. coin to feature a historic figure. President Abraham Lincoln has been on the penny since 1909, the 100th anniversary of his birth.
The Lincoln penny was the first cent on which appeared the words "In God We Trust."
Over two-thirds of all coins produced by the U.S. Mint are pennies.

Much Love...

Origami Dreams

This pic is of the offensive female peacock that wanted to take a royal chunk out of my butt at the Bronx Zoo early Friday morning. She flew over the gate and tried picking at my bag (I had lunch and snacks in there). I'll post more pics of the zoo within the coming days.

The peacocks at the Zoo are extremely aggressive right now. I was doing some research on them and came across this website for your inspection.

But Seeeriously folks:

Yesterday flew by! I meant to document our daily find last night but I fell asleep quite early. We took a drive to Bordentown, NJ to get a few things and wound up being good citizens. We went to a store and purchased a box of four plant stands (valued at $14.99 each). The lady at the register only charged us for one and we were leaving the store when I realized the error. What would you do? Go home without paying the 44.97? (there is no tax for this purchase) or would you go and pay for it?

We decided to go back and pay for the merchandise. The floor manager was dazed and kept thanking us for our honesty. Turns out the cashier was new to the place and was on trial probation. Had we gone home with the merchandise, she would have been let go for this error. What can I say.. we are all ethical folks here at the Krab house.


We rented Hostel and War of the Worlds from our neighborhood video store . I feel so sorry for all the Tarantino fans out there... HOSTEL SUCKED CHUNKS! I wish I could get my money back but we paid with a gift card. War of the Worlds was 10000000X better. I wound up having a nightmare about Hostel- not so much the gore part though.. it had more to do with walking around a foreign country.


Today we found a total of forty cents (two dimes, one nickel and fifteen pennies) throughout various locations in New York City and Bordentown New Jersey. Since it rained, we cancelled going on a walking tour of the neighborhood. It's okay though.. last week was jam packed with vacation excursions. I updated the changepot last night and noticed that we have found almost eleven dollars in the past three weeks. AMAZING. There was a time during this month when we were averaging $1.00 a day- interesting.

Total Cash Found Today: $0.40
Total Since Blog Inception: $63.80

Penny Lane?

A Penny for Your Thoughts, and 1.4 Cents for the Penny
By FLOYD NORRIS, The New York Times

(April 22) - What happens if a penny is worth more than 1 cent?

That is an issue the United States Mint could soon face if the price of metals keeps rising. Already it costs the mint well more than a cent to make a penny.
Last year, the U.S. Mint made 7.7 billion pennies -- more than the number of all the other coins it produced.
This week the cost of the metals in a penny rose above 0.8 cents, more than twice the value of last fall. Because the government spends at least another six-tenths of a cent — above and beyond the cost of the metal — to make each penny, it will lose nearly half a cent on each new one it mints.
The real problem could come if metals prices rise so high that it would be economical to melt down pennies for the metals they contain.

Appearances aside, pennies no longer contain much copper. In the middle of 1982, after copper prices rose to record levels, the mint starting making pennies that consist mostly of zinc, with just a thin copper coating.
But these days, zinc is newly popular. Rising industrial demand and speculation have sent the price rocketing. Since the end of 2003, zinc prices have tripled. Gold, by contrast, is up only about 50 percent.
"What is really new in the commodity world is the extent to which hard commodities have been converted to financial assets through exchange-traded funds and hedge funds," said Ed Yardeni, the chief investment strategist of Oak Associates.
"In the late 90's," Mr. Yardeni added, "my hedge fund friends were all experts in technology. Now all they talk about is zinc, lead and oil. There is a lot of money that has poured into these areas."
That may mean that a bubble is brewing, but Mr. Yardeni thinks the run is not yet over.
Asked if the mint had a backup plan for what it will do if zinc prices rise far enough that it could pay to melt down pennies, a spokesman said that such issues were for Congress to decide. Perhaps the mint could go back to making steel pennies, as it did during World War II when copper was needed for the war effort.

Pennies, meanwhile, are in high demand. Last year, the mint made 7.7 billion of them — more than the number of all the other coins it produced. In the first three months of this year, the pace of penny production rose to an annual rate of 9 billion — the highest since 2001.
Why so many? Perhaps there is now some hoarding in expectation that metal prices will keep rising, but mostly it is an issue of sales taxes, which in most states are added to the retail price and assure that the total price of many items will require pennies to be given in change if a customer pays with dollar bills. That helps explain why the idea of eliminating the penny has gone nowhere.
So retailers demand pennies from their banks, the banks demand them from the Federal Reserve, and the Fed orders them from the mint. Many of the people who get the pennies in change throw them into a jar, where they may sit for years, requiring the mint to make more and more of them.
And, at these prices, lose money on every one

Friday, April 21, 2006

Something told me it's all happening at the ...

Took the kiddies today. Hubby found a huge stash of pennies- twenty-eight to be exact. I am so pooped.. I'll update this better tomorrow.

Total today: $0.28

OT: Here's Pinky!

Here is Pinky, our newest addition. She's so pretty! I will add the other plants as I find more info about them.

Anthurium Care

Melody Webster

Anthuriums, also known as Flamingo flowers and pigtail plants, are tropical plants that can be grown as houseplants. They produce very beautiful flowers that last up to eight weeks, and even when not flowering, they work well as foilage plants. To learn how to take care of your anthurium, read on.


Anthuriums should be potted in a soil that is coarse and well-drained. Use a peat moss base. A 1:1:1 mixture of peat moss, pine bark, and perlite works well. The root system should be allowed to fill the pot before the plant is transplanted.


These plants do well in high light, but not direct sunlight. In order to bloom well, they should not have light levels that are too low. This will halt flower production.


Water your anthurium thoroughly, but allow it to dry slightly between waterings. Over-watering causes root damage and yellowing of the leaves. If the plant becomes too dry it may have tip burn and root damage, but the soil should be dry to the touch before watering again. This procedure will also prevent the appearance of gnats.


If you want to fertilize your anthurium, use a very light solution with a high phosphorous content. Phosphorous is the middle number in the fertilizer analysis. A high amount of this will promote blooming of the anthurium. Fertilize your plant about every other month.


Common problems with anthuriums include aphids, scales, mealybugs, thrips, and gnats. To avoid these bugs, do not allow the plant to stay wet, and if they do appear, wiping the foilage often and spraying gently with water is one treatment. If that does not work, pesticides may be used, but always be sure to follow the directions on the label. A disease that sometimes affects anthuriums is RHIZOCTINIA. This is caused by high temperatures and humidity in the presence of poorly drained soil. To prevent this, do not overwater and use well-drained soil. RHIZOCTINIA can be controlled with fungicides.

Thursday, April 20, 2006


It's so good to be back h-o-m-e. Since the gang's all here (Easter Vacay, Spring Break etc.) , we decided to visit the New York Aquarium and take in a flick (ICE AGE 2: THE MELTDOWN). The film wasn't half bad considering it was a sequel.

Today we found a total of 22 cents (one dime, twelve pennies). Fifteen cents of it was found on the drive thru flooring of Dunkin Donuts- the rest was found at the theater (three cents) and home depot (four cents).


Hubby and I welcomed a few new plant additions today- Jade, Gardenia, Angel, and Pinky. I'll photograph them and show off sometime later. I am currently reading up on composting- ewww... I think I might have to do some since the plants we bought seem fairly exotic.

Total today: $0.22

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Easter Easter everywhere!

If these shoes could talk... what would they say? Would they boast about where they have visited? Perhaps complain about the funky smell between the toes? I call this pic "Soul Dancing". These tired tootsies were springin' around Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

I stayed there for 5 days/4 nights and boy am I exhausted! We managed to attend a medieval show... pretty cool. They have one in Lyndhurst, New Jersey which I am planning on visiting sometime soon.

Even though we were on vacation, the family embarked upon a good ole' change hunt. The highest denomination found was one dollar on April 17th by my oldest. Disney World has got to be the worst place to find change!! We covered three parks in three days and found a grand total of : $0.19!!! K cracked a joke about the lack of change in DW which made my day (despite the overpriced trinkets and sugary treats). Attention fellow change collectors: Wanna know the best place to find change while on vacation? AIRPORT SCREENING AREA!
On the way to Orlando we found 0.60 (two quarters and a dime) and on the way back we found 0.25 (one quarter). Good going TSA!

Total found during the trip: $2.59

Friday, April 14, 2006

Good Friday, The Ugly Penny-tub, HO!!

This picture is for someone that I love very much. Muah. ML. Take a stroll down memory lane, dahhling. HERE.

Today is Good Friday. Usually I spend Good Friday hiding in my house (mom was OVERTLY religious) but today I went out due to necessity. I purchased a new camera specifically for our mini-vacation along with a few toiletries to boot. We found a dime walking out of the Best Buy store-which made me smile defiantly because I won a bet that I would find change in front of the store!

We found a total of 81 cents (One quarter, three dimes, one nickel, twenty one pennies) in a total of four destinations. The most change was found at our third location-Jersey Gardens,
where the pennies rained in a-plenty.


Upon exiting the mall, hubby spotted a penny underneath a bench. As he made his way toward the metal seat, a smoker sat down to enjoy his cigarette thoroughly. He puffed so deeply- enjoying the thick blue smoke that seemed to cart him off into another world. He stared off into space- studying every raindrop as his lungs expanded and contracted haltingly. I felt almost sad as I looked on shamelessly. It was like he was making love to the tiny white tube nestled between his lips and I interrupted him. Hubby looked at him and shrugged as we made our way toward the car. Suddenly, Hubby turned around and sat near the smoker- breaking up "the moment". The smoker quickly finished off his lovely ladystick and made his way back into the crowded mall. Hubby picked up the penny, placed it in his pocket and made his way toward us once again. I shook my head and smiled weakly. Such a shame-really. The crushed cigarette cost that smoker 33 cents- and hubby made off with a rebate ($0.01). 33 cents now equates to thousands of dollars in healthcare ten, fifteen years down the road. If I had a penny returned for every cigarette I once smoked/stepped on/observed/kicked, I wouldn't have to work ever again.


Hubby picked up a bunch of awful looking pennies today. They are so gross looking (despite my best attempts to clean them) that I've decided to create a side-pot devoted exclusively to these icky types (which will still be added to the daily total but placed in another container). Once I do decide to deposit the changepot cash, the change will go directly into an automated coin counting machine so no biggie. Today we added fifteen cents to this new "Penny-tub".

Et Cetera

Hubby and I went to see "Scary Movie 4". Hilarious. While we didn't necessarily agree with the amount of unsupervised kiddies that littered the theater, the movie more than made up for it.

Total today: $0.81


Thursday, April 13, 2006

Travelin Lite

On the tube right now: WILL AND GRACE SEASON ONE
Storm's a-comin.
Coveted item of the day: COACH
So here I am, basking in my newfound addiction- designer handbags. Ok. I'm lying. I just LOVE handbags. I have fallen in love with this coach bag for some reason. Maybe I'll pick it up when I return from my trip. Maybe not.
Today we went to the PX and found one DOLLAR (apparently it flew out of someone's hand and made it under my car in front of the MCSS) , three pennies and a gorgeous plant table on sale. It matches perfectly in my living room yayy!! After our shopping binge, we headed over to the Staten Island Mall where we found 0.72 cents (one quarter, four dimes, and seven pennies).
This is the second actual dollar that we have found this week (see THIS post).
Total today: $1.75

Funniest find of the day:
As we strolled around the mall some kids ran past us and dropped change. Hubby's ears perked up and he turned abruptly. As expected, the kids kept going-oblivious to the dropped loot. Hubby followed a coin into a store that had NO customers. The salespeople looked at my husband funny since they noticed him strolling in after the change- it was awesome! Hubby picked up what turned out to be a dime proudly and handed it to me.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Personal Finance 2.0

I woke up refreshed and determined to change my finances around a bit. I've ignored my methods of saving for a month and it's starting to show. Since hubby is on leave for a month, I have discarded all methods of savings and envelope stuffings in exchange for lengthy hours of video-game playing and idle chatter. ENOUGH!!

First things first- Here's my to-do list for today, Wednesday April 12!!

1. Set up a spending budget for the next three weeks and all that happens to fall within the time period (new spends including : vacation, clothes expense , car insurance payment lump, credit card payment for hotel/airfare)

2. Begin a mid-month envelope for this month (categories: Smoking, Bill cruncher, Split Wallet)

3. Start packing (when you vacation with children, it is never too early to pack!)


So I did two out of three. That ain't so bad, is it? I did get the car inspected (procrastination is the my cardinal sin) FINALLY. Hubby bought me a replacement PSP (we're selling my semi-defective one) from his own cash reserve. Still, I managed to buy myself this gorgeous hobo bag and a few articles of clothing for our mini vacation. I got DD this fabulous dress for her communion- along with all the cute lil' trinkets (purse, gloves, stockings, shoes, veil).


I am shocked. Today we found a whopping $1.15 in the form of three quarters, three dimes, and ten pennies. One of the pennies is an actual wheat penny from 1945. Two of the pennies were found in NY (a gas station and outside of a mall). The rest of the change was found in various spots at the Jersey Gardens Mall.
Ladies and Gents, this is a momentous occasion. Here is a quick calculation of how much we have actually found in cash for the past six days.
Wed April 12- $1.15
Tue April 11 - $0.69
Mon April 10- $0.82
Sun April 9- $1.29
Sat April 8- $2.00
Fri April 7- $0.01

Total for 6 days: $5.96
WOW. I am in shock. That's almost a dollar a day. Amazing. The pot's getting bigger!!
Ok. Time to rest. Perhaps I'll go back out later.
Mucho amor.....<3<3>

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Untitled- For now.

Like going to rite aid? Look who shops there...

Spending Triggers.. changepot update etc.

April 11th, 2006
The past couple of days have been absolutely wonderful! Spring is finally here- my flowers survived the freak april snowstorm and all is well in this little corner of Staten Island!

After reading some self-help/ motivational books over winter break, I've decided to pay more attention to HOW I spend money- what triggers me, etc. I know now that 99% of my impulsive spending happens because I want to buy things for my kids- things I secretly wanted but couldn't have when I was young. I decided to make it a complete experiment (notebook et al!)
here is what I did for two weeks:

-Created a shopping chart/log for two weeks (March 25-April 8)

- Checked off when I made purchases that
weren't on the budget and wrote down the amount (pretax) on a separate column. Wrote down who it was for and why I thought it was "justified".

After the two weeks were up, I tallied the amount spent and the results were shocking. While I exercised some restraint because of the physical hassle of whipping out my chart in public every time I bought something, I managed to spend $317 on my family (dog included). Some of that hard earned dough bought PSP video games, wicker style purses, bratz accessories, and enough jellybeans to feed the state of Vermont! The oddest purchase was two packs of cherry air freshener for $1.39 each at 2:10am at the local gas station and the reason: "Hubby's boots.". Well, at least it wasn't cigarettes!

So..the lesson I learned here is that despite my frugal attempts to save save save (envelope systems, conserve energy etc), old habits are hard to break. I hadn't set up a "spending account" prior to my little investigation and the truth is sometimes you just WANT to spend on something trivial (the American marketing industry wouldn't survive if we wouldn't shop impulsively!). Since I spent over 300 bucks in two weeks, I have now added this new category to my monthly budgeting cycle.

So ask yourself this... when you went shopping last time, how many items did YOU buy that were absolutely unneccesary (price has nothing to do with it! It would be an interesting thing to tally up, wouldn't it?


Today we found a total of 69cents (544pm)-1 quarter, 3 dimes and 14 pennies. We found 14 cents (1 dime, 4 pennies) of today's total on the way to pick up DD (walking 4.4 miles!) When we got back we decided to walk to the nearby pizza parlor and found more money. Hubby found a shiny new quarter and the pennies we found were largely unrecognizable due to the amount of corrosive materials caked on the surface. Later in the afternoon, we walked to a nearby supermarket and found 26 cents (2 dimes and six pennies). I stuck the gross ones in a container and cleaned them up. Wow.. these few days have yielded high returns.. i'm shocked.


Today we bought 4 indoor plants. Each family member has named them accordingly
Hubby has named his Spike.
Bee named hers Lilian.
Kit named hers Flower.
and mine is Suegra (spanish for "mother in law").

I will take pics and post em' later.

Total today: $0.69

Monday, April 10, 2006


Here is a photo of the flowers that I planted two summers ago. They blossom every spring... aren't they purty??

But seriously folks...
Have you ever stumbled across a dilemma you have mixed feelings for? Part of you says "sure" while the other says "nahh.. don't wanna do this". Well, I am at a fork in the road. I suspect the major reason for my uncertainness has to do with the menstrual cycle.. ahh the curses of femininity.

Anywhoo.. today is such a beautiful day. Despite the financial pulls to and fro, I am feeling quite positive for a change. I've finished the housekeeping books for April and I've pulled a handsome spend cushion ripe for our mini vacation (the joys of frugality!).

On the found money front:
We went to school for some administrative purpose and found 82 cents! $0.25 by the administration building, $0.01 on the way to Building 2, $0.25 by the 911 memorial, $0.01 by the car, $0.25 by the soccer goalpost and $0.05 by the second row of cars on the way back to our car.


I have been reading some obscure blogs-this one happens to be the oddest in the bunch:

Bryanboy: Le Superstar Fabuleux
Adventures of the new-moneyed classless bitch from hell. Vulgarity is the new discreet. Trash is the new exclusivity. I'm not a trannie. I'm just a really effeminate homosexual. I'm planet earth's favourite third world faggot and the land of the brown, l'exotique and the natives has never been this *burp* chic

Read it sometime.. you might find it a little useful!

Total today: $0.82


Sunday, April 09, 2006

Lovely Dayyyyyy!

WOW! Today has turned out to be such a wonderful day!!! We woke up early and went to mass (it's been EONS for me, mind you!). I dropped hubby off at school then went shopping for a bit. After class, we decided to walk around campus and found a total of 29 cents in school- here is the breakdown:

5 cents in the side entrance of building 3
6 cents in building 4
11 cents in building 5
3 cents crossing over to the 1 & 2 buildings
3 cents near building 2.

Found one whole dollar in the video store parking lot. Hubby found this bill as it flew past my back right tire. I was very pleased considering we have had such awesome luck finding change lately but it has been a while since we found greenback!
Total found for the day $1.29

Mad LOVE...

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Ahh the comforts of home. I've been completely into cleaning my home and becoming more of a frugal domestic goddess. Today we took the baby on an easter egg hunt and then shopping in Jersey. Hubby found a penny in the mall parking lot (clever considering I was giving up hope on finding anything!). Upon our return home, hubby found two pennies in our backyard. I have added it to the pot since he did technically find this outside?

We also cashed in a huge bag of soda cans= $4.10 in total. I have given $2.00 to my daughter's changepot since she did 90% of the work collecting them when we stormed my school a few weeks ago. We've decided to add cans along to the found money jar instead of making monthly envelopes for recycling. I can deal with that especially since we dont cash in cans all the time.

I was reading other blogs on the net and found this very interesting post on smoking from website

The Cost Of Smoking

Smoking is expensive, but when people consider the cost of smoking, they usually limit their focus to the cost of the cigarettes they smoke. While the cost of cigarettes by itself can add up to close to $1500 a year, the reality is that the cost of the cigarettes is only a small portion of the overall monetary cost of smoking. There are numerous hidden costs associated with smoking that most people fail to consider. These costs are rarely examined when people talk about how much their smoking habit costs. Some of these costs arise due to higher payments associated with the risks of smoking while others result from a decrease in asset value due to smoking. All told, these hidden costs of smoking can increase the actual amount a smoker pays each year several times the cost of the cigarettes alone.This site examines some of the costs of smoking that you may not have considered before. While your health should be the main reason to quit smoking, when you come to realize that you may be spending close to $10,000 a year because of your smoking habit, this may be one more motivating force to kick the habit:

Life Insurance: Smokers have a greater risk of dieing at a younger age than non smokers and this risk is reflected in higher life insurance premium payments.

Health Insurance: Smokers have a greater risk of medical problems than non smokers and this risk is reflected in their medical insurance premium payments.

Health Care: Since smokers frequently have more medical problems than non smokers, they must pay more to take care of these problems.

Medications: More medical problems for smokers usually results more prescription medicine taken by smokers than non smokers.

Home Owner's Insurance: Smokers have a greater risk of burning down their house than non smokers and this risk is reflected in higher home owner's insurance premium payments.

Value of the House: Smoking leaves a bad smell in a house thus decreasing the value to potential buyers.

Value of Your Possessions: Just as with the house, smoking leaves a bad smell to many of the items in your house thus decreasing their value.

Car Insurance: Smokers have a greater risk of getting into a car accident than non smokers and this risk is reflected in their car insurance premium payments.

Car Resale Value: Smoking leaves a bad smell in a car thus decreasing the value to potential buyers or when traded-in for another car.

Earn Less Money: Studies have found that smokers earn between 4% to 11% less money than their non smoking counterparts.

Less Social Security / Pension Benefits: Since smokers earn less than non smokers, they receive less overall social security and pensions benefits than non smokers.

Cost of Cleaning: Whether its the inside of their home, the inside of their car or their clothes, smokers have to spend more to keep things clean.

Dental Care: Smokers spend more on dental care and special dental products than non smokers.

Lost Interest: All the extra money that smokers must spend means that money can't be saved resulting in lost interest.When you look beyond the cost of the pack of cigarettes and incorporate all the other monetary costs associated with smoking, you begin to see smoking is a huge drain on ones personal finances.

Mad love...................

Friday, April 07, 2006

That good ole' lady Spring

Here is a picture of the new changepot. I have also taken a picture of all the money found since October (down below)- interesting perspective when you look at it altogether, ain't it??

Incredible. Wednesday's freak snowstorm crushed my yearly tulip bulbs. Guess I'll have to start planting all over again lol. Wednesday's storm was so unusual- first some rain, then loud thunder and lightning, and then flurries galore. The sky went titanium white, then earl grey, then back to cerulean blue in under three hours. Sign of things to come? Or perhaps someone asking M.N. for a sign- something to believe in.

Before anything else, I would like to give thanks for fifty things that exist in this world (more importantly, that mean so much to me). My universe would never be the same without them.

50. Oatmeal Raisin cookies
49. Billie Holiday records
48. Lily flowers
47. Dogs (Puppies)
46. Peppermint flavored Tea
45. Goetze's Caramel Creams
44. IPOD mp3 players
43. Linen Spray
42. Crinkle Cut french fries and saucer-like onion rings
41. Nia Henriques
40. Renaissance paintings/tapestries
39. Camouflage
38. Elliptical machines
37. Jazz/Opera music
36. Bamboo trees
35. Spiders
34. Dolemite and the era of Blaxploitation
33. Don Knotts
32. Freedom of speech
31. Hair clips
30. Digital Cameras
29. Jelly Belly Jelly beans
28. Forgiveness
27. Self-help books
26. Clouds of all sizes
25. Furry bunny slippers
23. Friends
22. Fleece outfits
21. Professors Blanford Parker and Arnold Kantrowitz
20. Gardenias
19. Billy Joel music
18. Broadway PLAYS (NOT MUSICALS!!!)
17. T.S. Eliot
16. Sushi (california and shrimp tempura rolls to be exact)
15. rain
14. chamomile flowers
13. the color pink
12. cellphones
11. smiling
10. Panama, Republic of
9. Genealogy
8. Honda vehicles
7. the internet
6. you.
5. education
4. snowflakes in APRIL
3. Marquela.
2. my husband
1. my babies- the greatest miracles of all.

Hubby found a penny in Target while we picked up some easter goodies for Grandma. I am amazed at how this woman is so independent for her age (84). She's one tuff lady.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Hal Linden- still sexy at 75!

Army veteran and outspoken actor Hal Linden turned 75 on March 20th. I love that man! His acting ability spans 40 years on and off-broadway. Personally, I like to celebrate actors while they're alive... so Hal, this bud's for you!

Today I took DD to her pediatrician. Drove her while having a temperature of 101.8 (yes, whatever she has I now have) Sucks golf balls. Really.
While on my way to the clinic, I found 11 cents- one dime and one nickel by a bank ATM right next to the doctors' office.
After the visit from heck, we dropped by DDs school with the doctors note and found out that her teacher had the EXACT same illness last weekend and probably spread the virus when she went back to work on TUESDAY. So.. it wasn't Botulism after all.. it's more like Viral Gastroenteritis.

So now, I'm sitting at the computer, feet planted firmly on the foot massager. I feel drained but alive. Motrin is my friend. And so is Bleach. Everytime I use the can, I clean my bathroom for fear of spreading "it" to my two non-infected citizens.
I really think I am starting to form a cleanliness habit- thanks to Mr. Franklin's almanac.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Aprille is the cruelest month...


Unlike most of the other nonfoolish holidays, the history of April Fool's Day, sometimes called All Fool's Day, is not totally clear. There really wasn't a "first April Fool's Day" that can be pinpointed on the calendar. Some believe it sort of evolved simultaneously in several cultures at the same time, from celebrations involving the first day of spring. The closest point in time that can be identified as the beginning of this tradition was in 1582, in France. Prior to that year, the new year was celebrated for eight days, beginning on March 25. The celebration culminated on April 1. With the reform of the calendar under Charles IX, the Gregorian Calendar was introduced, and New Year's Day was moved to January 1. However, communications being what they were in the days when news traveled by foot, many people did not receive the news for several years. Others, the more obstinate crowd, refused to accept the new calendar and continued to celebrate the new year on April 1. These backward folk were labeled as "fools" by the general populace. They were subject to some ridicule, and were often sent on "fools errands" or were made the butt of other practical jokes. This harassment evolved, over time, into a tradition of prank-playing on the first day of April. The tradition eventually spread to England and Scotland in the eighteenth century. It was later introduced to the American colonies of both the English and French. April Fool's Day thus developed into an international fun fest, so to speak, with different nationalities specializing in their own brand of humor at the expense of their friends and families. In Scotland, for example, April Fool's Day is actually celebrated for two days. The second day is devoted to pranks involving the posterior region of the body. It is called Taily Day. The origin of the "kick me" sign can be traced to this observance. Mexico's counterpart of April Fool's Day is actually observed on December 28. Originally, the day was a sad remembrance of the slaughter of the innocent children by King Herod. It eventually evolved into a lighter commemoration involving pranks and trickery. Pranks performed on April Fool's Day range from the simple, (such as saying, "Your shoe's untied!), to the elaborate. Setting a roommate's alarm clock back an hour is a common gag. Whatever the prank, the trickster usually ends it by yelling to his victim, "April Fool!" Practical jokes are a common practice on April Fool's Day. Sometimes, elaborate practical jokes are played on friends or relatives that last the entire day. The news media even gets involved. For instance, a British short film once shown on April Fool's Day was a fairly detailed documentary about "spaghetti farmers" and how they harvest their crop from the spaghetti trees. April Fool's Day is a "for-fun-only" observance. Nobody is expected to buy gifts or to take their "significant other" out to eat in a fancy restaurant. Nobody gets off work or school. It's simply a fun little holiday, but a holiday on which one must remain forever vigilant, for he may be the next April Fool!


Yesterday I set about running errands and found 11 cents in ShopRite. I found a dime in front of the customer service booth and Hubby found a dark, rusting penny near the frozen foods section. All my family members are ill in some form or another- DD is starting to get over her bout with food poisoning and hubby's back looks like something from a frankenstein movie. My youngest has a runny nose as well as my mom... sheesh... looks like I better load up on the zinc.

I had an eerie dream about Johnny Depp, the novel "Father of Frankenstein", and that guy who plays Will on "Will and Grace". Oh well... guess I better start breakfast.