Thursday, November 27, 2014

Penurious ways...

Since the pharmacy is closed today, I went to fetch my prescriptions yesterday and to buy enough milk to get me through the Holiday shopping madness, even though my next budget cycle had not yet started.  Staring at the milk section, I wondered how many gallons I would need.  I bought three.  But I did use more of my Walmart Savings Catcher refund money.  

I also filed a damage claim with the Walmart Vision Center.  After someone asked if I had a warranty, I researched and discovered that the glasses I bought did come with a warranty and that I was still in the 365-day warranty window.  I had not gotten back my receipt when I had to have the glasses remade last January, but I had Capital One send me the specific transaction detail that showed the charge on my bill was for the glasses.  The good news is that I will get a new pair.  The bad news is that I really, really, really need a new prescription.  I am not certain if it will be better for me to get the wildly expensive lenses this calendar year or next, with regard to the medical spending.  I genuinely wish I were more of a math person.  

At least this way, I will have a better back-up pair of glasses once I get a new prescription.  Using my prior pair of glasses, I cannot drive or read or cook or do anything that requires close or far vision, only mid-vision activities.  So, even though the twisty-tie-and-tape job I did to hold the two halves together means my glasses fall off my face near constantly, I mostly am trying to get by with the broken ones.

Today, now that I am in my budget period, I ordered the tax software for next year because I had a $10 coupon that was good until December 1st.  Maybe if I plug in numbers to it when it arrives, I might be able to tell if I need those medical dollars in this year or not.  The whole paying-off-the-mortgage at the end of 2013/beginning of 2014 has made that 10% (so WRONG that Obamacare raised that) threshold skewed for me.  Actually, withdrawing the retirement money—albeit a good decision—has wreaked all kinds of havoc for me, tax-wise the most.  SIGH.

I feel like I ought to be all happy about owning my home.  But I rarely think about it.  All I think about is my budget and how to find savings here and there with that ridiculously expensive medication I take and how everything inches up.  My car insurance rose again.  I just don't get that, since it is 10 years old and I drive around 1,000 miles per year.  But since my Highlander would still garner a good sale price, I need the collision ... or whatever insurance it is that folk drop on older cars).  Besides, as I have written about before, you can lose your home for unpaid property tax bills even if they are less than $10.  Oh, how I fear missing a tax bill payment even though I have them automated!!

My co-pays for meds and doctor's visits are also rising in 2015, as well as the monthly prescription plan premium.  I am expecting my house insurance to rise, too.  So, I cast about for savings everywhere.  In my opinion, using that Walmart app is a no-brainer.  I've already received back just under $25.  I know there is a small cost-of-living raise for disability this year, but just the medical increases have wiped that out.

Anyway, I also ordered some much needed undergarments, which I noticed were on sale, even though buying undergarments always makes me feel like I am not spending money wisely.  And I ordered a hide-a-key thingy that I decided would be the least noticeable in my yard.  The tax software, the hide-a-key thingy, the water filter for my refrigerator, and the undergarments were all bought as separate orders on Amazon.  For each one, I gave up Prime shipping and opted for regular shipping to get the $1 digital credit.  Once everything ships, I will have $6 in credits and can rent a couple of movies.  I think I should start taking advantage of that credit more frequently.

The other good news is that I am now completely in the catastrophic coverage for Medicare.  The erythromycin was only $38!!!!!!!!!  Even most of my $10 generics dropped to $2.55.  That means I can use the medication savings for November and December to cover the new glasses.  I admit I am really, really, really tempted to spend the medication money on things other than glasses:  a movie in a real theater, a meal in a real restaurant, having my car washed, having my too long curtains that have been bugging me for nearly four years hemmed, renewing the membership to the Botanical Gardens (it was a gift), buying the four albums that go with the Michael Card Gospel commentaries, having someone other than me cut my hair, and/or buying a table and chairs for the airing porch so I can eat out/up there next Spring/Summer/Fall.  But I really, really, really do need a new prescription on my glasses.

On the way home, I used up the last of my Taco Bell gift cards.  SADNESS.  I was a bit proud of myself, though.  Whilst I have gone far too many times in the month of November, for the most part I made those gift cards last impressively long.  That's one poor person lesson I have learned: Do not race your way through Taco Bell meals when you get a gift card.  I will say that the last card would have made it to the first week of December if my regular order had not risen in price from $2.79 to $3.33 over the past year.  Not bad for birthday gifts from June, eh?

My special meal today was a $2.98 box of Red Barron's singles pepperoni deep dish personal pizza (yes, I ate both of them).  I sure do like that Red Barron's wickedness even though I very much dislike both pepperoni pizza and deep dish pizza.  It's an odd thing.  And ... drum roll, please ... I drank a Dr Pepper.  BLISS.  I miss drinking them greatly.

Amos likes those pizzas, too.  
I didn't share.  
Does that make me a Thanksgiving Humbug?

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