Happy Friday – Hurricane Who?

I cannot begin to describe how happy we are this Friday that our memories of the hurricane are finally starting to fade a bit as our outstanding hurricane related items are finally pretty much all addressed. (Well, mostly – there are a couple of small lingering ones, but the big ones are finally taken care of.)

Solar panel or projectile? Why not both?

Solar panel or projectile? Why not both?

While we know that we were incredibly lucky not to have any major damage, as it turns out, even having relatively minor damage (ie, not worth filing an insurance claim), can make returning to normal difficult.

Despite a supply of contractors and handymen flooding the area, the increased demand for those skills rose so rapidly that in many cases it was a battle even to have our calls or emails answered at all (much less in a timely manner).

In no particular order, here are the last three of our “big” issues that we’ve been able to get resolved over the past few weeks.

Continue reading Happy Friday – Hurricane Who?

PoP Balance Sheet – November 2017

Welcome to our November 2017 Balance Sheet!

We use the structure of a monthly income statement and balance sheet in tandem to make sure we are keeping our expenses low and planting our pennies wisely. If you’re not already tracking your finances using these two methods, go to mint.com and get started today! If you have any questions about how we do this just post a comment and we’ll be sure to help!

 

The S&P 500 (which climbed over 2% in November) was almost entirely responsible for our net worth growth this month, so thanks, S&P 500!

Here are the numbers for November:

  • Our total assets went up $29.8K
  • Our total liabilities went down by $1.5K
  • Net worth went up by $30.3K 
  • Total net worth as of the end of November is $1,556.4K, which represents a 2.05% increase for the month

For the details…

Continue reading PoP Balance Sheet – November 2017

PoP Income Statement – November 2017

First pass at cushioning for the couch, plus a new rug!

First pass at cushioning for the couch, plus a new rug!  Sadly this isn’t the best picture because it’s night and it’s a little dark.

Mr. PoP and I put these income statements together for two reasons. First, we want to be transparent about our finances because we’re trying to be role models for other people who are trying to plant their own pennies (and end up with dollars someday!). Second, we do this to make sure we’re on track to meet our own long-term goals. If you’re not tracking your income statement and balance sheet, we highly recommend you start using a program like Mint to keep track of it all.

The last couple of months have been kindof a haze, and I’m finding it a little hard to believe this year is almost over!  

Spending this month wasn’t too out of the ordinary – we made two big-ish personal purchases.  The first was a rug for the living room, which we’re thinking really ties the room together*.  (*see below)

The second is a surround sound system for the guest room.  After inheriting the piano this summer and committing to re-arranging the living room, we knew that we could no longer really project movies on the wall in the living room.  So instead, we’re transitioning our guest room/Kitty PoP’s room into guest room/Kitty PoP’s room/Mrs PoP’s office/media room, where we’ll have built in surround, a little shelf where the projector will live with movies projecting on the screen pulled down over the window, and the guest bed got replaced with a convertible futon from Ikea that we’ll keep as a couch most of the time and unfold it when guests come to town.  All in all, we think it’s going to be a lot of fun and we hope to use the space a lot more often!

Here’s all the numbers…

The Bottom Line

  • Earnings before principal paydowns and savings allocations of $4,423.  

And the details… Continue reading PoP Income Statement – November 2017

Latest Woodworking Project

Note to readers:  I first started drafting this post in early October.  I had just finished putting a coat of wax-oil on this recent woodworking project and though there were still trim pieces to add and cushions to sew, I was so excited to share it.  In fact, on my insistence, Mama and Papa PoP stopped over to see it and gave it an overwhelming stamp of approval.  
Less than a month later, Papa PoP passed away.  It’s nearly impossible to take a step in our house without seeing something he didn’t have a hand in.  From the workbench he made for Mr PoP in college out of leftover solid oak flooring, to my first real building project (a desk!) that he helped me build so I could have my own desk in grad school, to the crown moulding he gave us advice on, the kitchen cabinets (and all the rest of the other work in there) that he inspired and gave us the confidence to tackle, or the countless other projects that he gave advice on over the years!  It’s in no small part to him that we have done many of the things that we have done today.    
We’re never going to forget him, and will never stop being appreciative of everything he taught us and all the love he shared with us.   

 

When we started our big kitchen remodel, Mama and Papa PoP gifted us a big pile of wood that had come from some trees that Papa PoP had helped cut down over thirty years ago before they built their house up north.  (Yes, the very same house they downsized from this summer.)

IMG_6845When Papa PoP was initially telling us about the wood, he remembered that the wood was walnut and some cherry, and we planned on using the walnut for our tables and countertops in the kitchen after seeing this awesome thread on imgur of someone using walnut to construct butcher block counters.  But when the big pile of wood got down here, it ended up that there was about 2x as much cherry as there was walnut – not quite enough walnut for us to build all the butcherblock that we wanted for our kitchen.  (That’s mostly my fault since I knew that I wanted the counters to match the table, the ledge on the pantry, and all the pull-out shelves in the pantry as well!)

The cherry turned out beautifully (see the picture of the pull-out on the pantry there to the right), so we have zero regrets on opting for cherry instead of walnut for the kitchen, but that choice did mean that we had a decent amount of walnut when we were done without a great plan of what to do with it.

Luckily, we had plenty of time to think about it since the kitchen took us so long to do.  =)

And we finally decided – we’d get rid of our big frumpy loveseat and replace it with something a little bit sleeker and hopefully a lot comfier – and I’d build the frame out of walnut. Continue reading Latest Woodworking Project

Net Neutrality-What it is, why it matters

We try to stay out of Politics but are making an exception today regarding the FCC’s latest attempt to screw the american consumers even harder abolish Net Neutrality.

Q: What is Net Neutrality?

A: It is a regulation that ensures that all websites (like this one) compete on an even playing field.

Q: Why is it important?

A: If we loose Net Neutrality your ISP (Comcast, AT&T, Cox, etc.) will be able to make you pay more for visiting certain sites-much like a cable bundle. For example, you could get the $30 per month package that includes facebook and yahoo.com, or the 50$ package that includes facebook.com, google.com and netflix. Or the $100 package that includes facebook.com, google.com and plantingourpennies.com (that’s right, we know you’d pay that!)

Q: That’s terrible!

A: It gets worse, but I don’t have time (or the writing skills) to do it justice. Watch this video instead:

 

The FCC vote is scheduled for December 14th. If you’re pissed at the FCC allowing big ISPs to screw you (and you should be), then go to here to call your congress-critter:https://www.battleforthenet.com or go here and comment to the FCC directly: www.gofccyourself.com

 

So dear reader, have YOU called your representative yet?