Thursday, December 10, 2009

Not enough for a full post


--It has been frigid here (12 degree highs, –3 degree lows) but SUNNY.  I will take Sunny and freezing over snowy and less cold any day.  My kids want some snow, but we always get our fill of that around here.

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--Gabe has been teasing up a storm around here.  What is it about boys?  Is it being less verbal?  He cannot be around any sibling for more than 10 minutes without starting something, seriously.

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--I just had a long talk with my dad about taking advantage of the low interest rates by refinancing to a 15 year loan. We would save crazy amounts of money over the life of our loan!  It would up our payment a ton, which we can’t afford, unless we do less contributions to our stock option plan or our 401k.  What do you think?

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--I hate having Ryan get me presents lately.  It just stresses me out and I’ve just been telling him to forget it the last time or two.  It fills like we are just leaking money lately (lost camera, mess-up with our rental car company’s “driving in New England” policy, fix-ups for our rental house) and I really don’t need some $100 gift.  Anyone else feel that way?

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--I’m feeling pretty on top of Christmas.  I did 80% of my shopping online on Saturday and Monday.  The Internet:  definitely Al Gore’s best invention.

--A friend just rented out a Bouncy House type place, then dropped off invites to us, indicating that this was their Christmas gift to everyone this year.  It’s late at night, so it’s less expensive, I’m sure…but isn’t that the best idea?

And now I’m off to pick up the last few presents and purchase the baking supplies for this weekend’s baking extravaganza.  Thanks for listening.


Tristan said...

I know what ya mean about telling the husband to forget gifts this year. It just seems like everything just adds up right?

Gotta love the Christmas stress!

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Brooke said...

Take em all! You deserve it! :)

buddens said...

Oh, the husband gifts! Puleeeeeese don't ever tell him I told you but he always not only spends way too much, but on stuff I could really do without! He's been telling me I need an iPhone for months now, and I've been telling him, in no uncertain terms, I like my cracked little phone that does a good job at being a phone, which is all I really need it for, and I'm not worried about breaking. Plus, that I probably wouldn't use the features of an iPhone, and the data plan would be a complete waste of money. The only thing I would like would be the iPod feature of the iPhone and the games for my kids when we're stuck somewhere and they're bored.

We celebrate Swiss Santa on Dec. 6, and can you guess what he brought me? Yup. Now I really don't want to be ungrateful, and he DID get a screaming deal on the phone ($50), but really, all that money every month for the data plan and it's not something I'll really use! I'd rather go for monthly pedicures. Or really, I'd rather just not spend the extra money. Anyway, I'm being a super ungrateful huge complainer, but this happens all the time. He "spoils" me, but then I really do feel spoiled for not wanting what I got. But is it really spoiled if what I really wanted was something simpler and less expensive? I'm confusing myself now so I'll stop. Sorry for the hugely long comment, but it's nice to follow blogs of people you don't know in *real* life for this very reason ... venting! Ahhh, I feel a little better.

Sarah Blue said...

We just refinanced using the low interest rates. We kept out mortgage at 30 years. Here's the thing about mortgages...If you make one or two extra payments each year, with the amount going straight to principal, you will shave years off your mortgage. So you don't need to refinance for 15 years. Refinance to thirty, then make extra payments when you can afford to. If you look at your ammortization schedule you'll be able to see how the estra principal payments move up your ultimate pay-off date.

There are twp great things about doing it this way: 1) Your mortgage stays low, and if you refinance with a lower percentage, your monthly payments will go down too. 2) If you can't afford to put extra money toward principal one month, Fine! No worries. With a 15-year mortgage you have to make the higher payment every month or else your in default. No such problems with the 30-year refinance.

Can you tell that we put a lot of thought into this? Hope it makes sense and doesn't just sound like a bunch of rambling. :)

diane said...

I buy my own Christmas presents. That way I always get what I want.

Boys and teasing go hand in hand. I think it is their love language. It is not mine.

Adrianne said...

I agree w Sarah blue on the mortgage thing, but b/c I was curious I did some calculations.

If you pay $1000 a month towards your mortgage and put $1000 a month towards other investments that on average will earn you 8% APR, at the end of 30 years you have a house paid for and $1,417,613 in the bank. If you change that and pay $1600 mortgage for 15 years, saving only $400 for those first 15 years then save the entire $2000 for the additional 15 years, at the end of 30 years you have a house paid for and $1,110,690 in the bank. $300,000 less!

Interesting, huh?

Adrianne said...

but I have to add that living without a mortgage is the greatest thing about my life, but I don't know how to calculate quality of life numbers.

the wrath of khandrea said...

again... reading you like a book to which my life is the sequel.

presents stress me out. teasing happens all the time with the kids. bugs me. 80% done with xmas shopping, 79% of it was online. sharing the same climate, so i get that one too.

as for the house... the only thing that worries me there is that should you lose your employment, how will you afford a higher payment? it would rapidly deplete your savings to make that payment. also, it seems like you would want to know for 100% certain that you are going to be in that house for the next 15 years. otherwise, the savings don't materialize.
that said, i do think it's a great idea. after 15 years, your house is paid off, and you could just take that same amount from the house payment and spend an additional 3-5 years paying it into your savings and investments. beef them up over a short period.

end of novel.

rubberbandgirl said...

We're having similar weather, though you're a bit colder.

We're off-track the whole month which means our seven/nearly eight year old is causing a lot of teasing trouble around the house.
At least he's been a pleasant hard worker.

I have no comment on re-fis or presents.

Merry Christmas!

Lauren in GA said...

I am working on a post all about Evan because his portion of the last monster post got deleted (well, the pictures did so I gave up) Anyway...I kid you not...a major portion of the post is dedicated to Evan's teasing. He will not leave anyone alone. If I have to something along the lines of, "Evan, he is are 12...leave. him. alone!!" one more time in a given afternoon I am going to throddle him.

So, I guess these pictures are from last year...or do you have wrapped presents under your tree?

Erika said...

okay - can you post a list of all the on-line shops you visited. you're brillant. what are you getting Jane? My 6 yr. old wants a drivers license and cell phone. how am I supposed to work with that!

zeeny said...

I just told my husband we aren't doing gifts this year. Our gift is to save our money for a trip to disneyworld with the girls next year. I feel the same about nice gifts, that I appreciate but really don't need. We can just enjoy the girls enjoying Christmas this year!

Elizabeth said...

My husband and I don't buy each other gifts at Christmas time because it is an expensive time of year with extra food and other gifts. But if we need/want things any other time we can usually afford it. That being said I like buying my own gifts (i feel like gifts I don't need or want is a huge waste of money).
Thanks for sharing.

Tammy said...

My advice: LEARN TO LIVE A LITTLE! Enjoy the gifts that Ryan gets you, enjoy a lower payment with a 30 year loan and realize the journey is part of the joy....its nice and great to pragmatic, but not worth it if you miss out on fun stuff like meals out with family, pedicures every now and then, special trips, little extras that make everyone happy.....just enjoy life, you absolutely deserve it. you deserve a day of bliss actually! xoxo

Tammy said...

Ok, maybe that sounded like an irresponsible, carefree person...which I am not at all?? But I do think there is discipline and analysis and then I think there is life...which involves living, enjoying, splurging, and realizing there is so much fun and joy to experience without worrying about pennies and details all the time! Ok, maybe that still sounds wild and silly, but its worth a thought! :)

crystal said...

Well, I had things to say but then I read Adrianne's comment/calculations & I now feel like a retard.


Lauren in GA said...

Uh...the word is spelled, "throttle" not, "throddle"...that was most embarrassing...

Uh, did I just spell embarrassing incorrectly?

Linsey said...

I agree with Adr and Tammy. Hm, they know you best so probably going with their advice is the best advice.