Changing Banks: Fee Me Once, Shame on You, Fee Me Twice, Shame on Me

As I document my financial journey, I must mention that I’m switching banks.  When I was in college, my mom opened an account for me at the Alabama Credit Union because they had some special running for new students at UA.  Throughout college, I used them and it was fine and great and good.

When I moved home to New Orleans post-graduation, I tried to continue using the AlabamaCU, but they were putting holds on the checks I deposited, because I was out of state.  I used to share a house with some friends, and I collected the rent and paid our landlord.  The credit union held my checks for the max allotted 11 business days after depositing.  As you might imagine, this was incredibly inconvenient, since there was no way I could get my roommates to pay me two weeks ahead of time, and no way I would have an extra couple of thousand bucks in my account as a cushion for when the rent was due. Continue reading

What I Learned in Sales Pt. 3: It’s Hard to Not Lose Yourself

I’ll be a little MIA for a week at least. I’m in Mexico visiting family! Here’s my view right now: image

My last day in sales (hopefully forever!) has come and gone. It was bittersweet. I’m going to miss my friends, but I’m not going to miss sales. I started thinking about this series when I came upon Holly’s post about her husband leaving sales. I wrote about getting to know The Joneses, and about the stupid surprising money things people say. Today I’m writing about the biggest challenge of all in sales: It’s Hard To Not Lose Yourself

I’ve spent just over 4.5 years in sales. I’ve told you before about how I never thought I’d end up in sales. In college, recruiters would come to visit us in the marketing department all the time, but if they were recruiting for a sales position, I’d disregard them completely. My internships were in global market research, project management, and advertising. I thought this is what I would get a job doing. Not until my last semester in college did someone mention that 70% of marketing graduates end up in sales. Continue reading

January Update: The Problem With Tracking Net Worth

I guess I don´t know how to do it.
I got right to it with my resolutions this year.  I set up my direct deposit to put 1% of my pay into the savings accounts of two needy children I know.  Feeling good about that.
Then I sat down to calculate my net worth for the first time ever.  Well, I updated my debts, and that was pretty easy, except I factored in Michael´s student loans which we haven´t started paying yet, and two 401k loans, whose repayment comes straight out of my paycheck each month.  I don´t normally factor these in because I never see the money I would have had if I didn´t have to pay them.  Also, the interest I´m paying on those goes back into my own account, so… yeah.  They don´t trouble me like everything else does.
And so, because this was one of my resolutions, here I am naked transparent:

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I’m Trying To Evolve

I never used to make New Years Resolutions because the new year never really meant much to me. In the past, I’ve felt like the coming of a new year has meant nothing more than a change of calendar date, like any other day.

However, the older I get, the more intentionally I’m trying to live. I’m trying to be aware of myself, the progession of my life, and the passage of time.

(It might seem like I talk a lot about my dad’s passing. I´m aware.) In February it’ll be 10 years since he passed away. My mom is turning 65 this year. I don’t have children yet. My friend’s dad is dying quickly of cancer. My niece and nephews are growing with lightning speed. I’m thinking about time a lot, these days.  These realizations have led me to wanting to be aware of the passage of time, is all.

And to be present.

I´d like to share with you my goals for 2015:

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What I Learned In Sales, Pt. 2: Surprising Money Things People Say

As my time in sales comes to a close (hopefully forever!), I’ve been reflecting on what I’ve learned here. Last week I wrote about how getting to know the Joneses will keep you from wanting to keep up with them.

Today I’m pulling a few examples from my daily interactions with customers that have shown me: It’s surprising how being smart with your money seems to put you in the minority.

Day in and day out, this is what I hear, see, and say. I really have learned a lot from talking to people, and applying common sense. The thing about working at a cell phone store is that it attracts a really wide demographic of customers, and so I feel like I’ve gotten a wide cross section of people to talk to. Sometimes what they say and how they think is really surprising to me.

wpid-tumblr_m57ghvswop1qifwrb.gif Continue reading

What I Learned in Sales, Pt. 1: Getting to Know The Joneses

wpid-tumblr_lr54wlvv7j1qhds7ko1_500.pngI only have 12 days left in retail sales (hopefully forever!) and as my time here comes to a close, I’m reflecting on what I’ve learned in my years here.

For the first time–when I finished college and started working at the cell phone store–did I really understand how different from me some people could be.

I had been, up until that point–unbeknownst to me–cradled in a cocoon of moderation. I grew up in the suburbs, went to nice schools, took vacations with my family every year. We went out to eat a few times a week and had practical cars. We exchanged thoughtful gifts at birthdays and Christmases, but didn’t really ever shop much otherwise. We weren’t poor, certainly, but we weren’t uber wealthy either. We were fine, happy, content and fulfilled. I was never denied anything, but I think that’s because I was raised to be grateful, never craving extravagances. Whatever. “Normal.”

Fast forward to my time in sales at the cell phone store. Let me tell you, I have learned that this is the perfect breeding ground for young, arrogant, “hotshots.” That’s not to say I haven’t made some great friends here–I have. But the turnover is very high here at the cell phone store and for the most part, people come and go and rise to glory and then crash and burn really quickly. That’s the nature of sales, from what I’ve seen. Continue reading

My Favorite Gift to Give

If the kids in your life are anything like the ones in mine, they have every toy under the sun and receive more and more at every birthday and Christmas. If the kids in your life are anything like the ones in mine, they’d love a pet giraffe.

Boy, do I have the solution for you! Continue reading