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Everything that can go wrong...

February 16th, 2016 at 05:44 am

No/low Spend Month was going great. We ended our first two weeks under budget, with $16 left over. I was feeling in control of life again and my urge to spend money was curbed. All was well.

Then, life happened. Dh and DS2 were watching videos of whales eating krill on my computer. Then they spilled a quart of hot coffee on the keyboard and immediately fried it. I hadn't backed up the data in two weeks (shame on me). So I lost two weeks of work on my novel and of freelance articles and interviews. The day before they were due. This was a beautiful Macbook air laptop that I adored. long battery life, quiet keyboard, no crapware. Alas, $2000 down the drain. The warranty doesn't cover spills. Despite my long-standing rules of no eating or drinking near my computer. Garrr...

I tried to disguise my sadness and anger. (You know how it is When you're a mom, you've got nothing for yourself. I just wanted one thing of mine to not be ruined, destroyed or messes with! No luck!). We took it to Microcenter. For $40 they did a diagnostic, to see what parts were damaged and if they could be replaced. The bad news: $800 to fix it. The good? The hard drive was fine. I paid $50 (!) for a 1 terrabyte external drive and they moved all my files to it. They saved it all! The guys at Microcenter were top notch. I'm a fan.

So...then I had to laptop shop. I decided I wasn't going to buy a new Macbook. I cant justify an expensive laptop. I have to think disposable, because I live in a house with three males, two of whom are 7 or under, and it's only a matter of time before one of them does something to the laptop that ISN'T covered by the warranty.

After much agonizing, I chose an Acer Aspire with an Intel 5 something or other and a 1 terrabyte HD . It had the longest battery life and the least clunky keyboard, and cost $479. More than I wanted to spend, but half the price of the cheapest macbook. But boy, let me tell you. I was spoiled. None of these windows machines are as quiet, long-batteried, or nice as macs!

The keyboard on this thing is still way too loud, which sounds crazy of me to mention, until I tell you I often have to work inside federal courtrooms, typing, and you can hear a pin drop in there--unless I'll be there typing!

So yes. Halfway through No Spend Month, and I'm it with nearly $600 out of pocket for a busted laptop. My heart is still sick over it, but there was no way around it.

*****In Other News******

On the bright side. I took my (single) sister to a movie for valentine's day. We saw Pride, Prejudice, and Zombies and you know what? It was way better than I thought it would be! The writers were very clever, and there were a lot of top-tier English actors/actresses in the cast. They did a nice job with what could have been a half-ass schlock movie.

As for the mortgage. In past posts, I've done some wishful math calculations in trying to figure out how to pay the mortgage off this spring, instead of in another 18 months as planned.

The great news is that DH is getting a bonus. It's $2000 less than last year, but that's okay. It'll be enough that we can make a huge dent in the mortgage balance. I won't know exactly how much until it's in the checking account.

I still haven't received two of my freelance 1099s, so I don't know exactly if and how much tax refund we will be receiving. I'm going to call the companies this week. Or company? One was bought out, and I don't think it exists anymore. Ugh. The headache! Anyway, the plan is to put the tax refund toward the mortgage as well. I'm estimating it'll be at least $3000. (Plus a possible state refund?)

In an ideal world, if the bonus and taxes work out, I maybe just maybe might be able to pay the house off by July without taking any money out of savings. Which is the huge part. When I came up with this crazy plan, I anticipated draining at least half the money out of the savings account, but it looks like it might not be necessary! Hazzah! Okay okay I'm getting ahead of myself! I already know how life throws curveballs. Let's hope for no more!

8 Responses to “Everything that can go wrong...”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    Darn on the laptop! I can imagine how disappointing that was. I definitely will be following your mortgage progress. Smile

  2. CB in the City Says:

    I'm remembering an old movie where coffee was spilled on a keyboard and it basically blew up the whole building. Can't remember which movie.... Anyway, I'm glad your data was saved and you replaced the laptop without too much outlay. This kind of stuff happens -- so irritating, but that's exactly what our emergency funds are for!

  3. ThriftoRama Says:

    I am thankful for the data. I'd be extra sad if I couldn't get all that work back.

  4. snafu Says:

    I'm so sorry you've lost your Mac Air to a hot cup of coffee! So clever of Microcenter to salvage data for transfer to an external DH. I'd become so blase I hadn't back up important material since summer and thank you for reminding us to back up!

  5. Butterscotch Says:

    I have a little boy as well so I understand what you mean about having nothing for yourself - everything nice ends up sticky or broken. Good for you for taking it in stride, I myself have cried over less than an important laptop. If it makes you feel any better, Acers have come a long way. I know it isn't close to a Mac, but they are better than they used to be..

  6. My English Castle Says:

    I'm a crazy person trying to keep my laptop always out of my kid's grimy hands. I'm glad you salvaged what you could. And hooray for the house news!

  7. ThriftoRama Says:

    I may have found a solution to kids and computers. While i was shopping, I saw an assortment of small inexpensive (relatively) chromebook type machines. I was thinking if I got one for each of my sons, they'd be perfect. They could stream movies, play games, and keep all of their logins/access to their school work accounts on them. They'd never need to borrow my computer to watch videos of whales! And if they spilled something on them, no data or anything would really be lost.

  8. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    I hope the culprits have learned their lesson (drink near computer.) I;m so sorry that happened to you. Glad you were able to at least save your data.

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