Sunday, September 9, 2012

Decisions, decisions

Who knew trying to figure out how one retires would be one of the more difficult decisions I make? When I was employed by Target, it made sense, to start saving for retirement because I was never going to make much money there. However now I am in a new position, and before September 20th I must make a decision on what to do with my money, otherwise I loose over $5,000. Target gave me no option besides the 401k. I was able to make basic decisions over my money-where to invest and so forth. I do have the option of taking my new employer's 401k, but upon looking at what they offer, I am not happy with the options. I was thinking about just going ahead and opening an IRA. I will not lie, the tax breaks are nice, who doesn't love to save money? I was looking at a couple of different companies, trying to determine what is the easiest route to go. I do not want to worry about my money, I know I want to make sure I place it somewhere that is FDIC insured, but I also want a company with an easy to use website as well. So what is a girl to do? If she cannot make up her, she must continue to research! LOL I love leaving things to the last minute, they help keep my "fire in the belly" to continue on! :-)

Sunday, September 2, 2012

I do enjoy some free stuff... LOL Try this coffee!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Bay to Breakers-or the most expensive vacation ever

Bay to Breakers was by the most stressful vacation I have ever been on. I loved the walking through people, the party that happened on Saturday night. However the events from Friday make it one of the worst vacations ever. On Friday, bright and early (as possible with two slow pokes), Nick and I set off for San Francisco. I had warned Nick ahead of time that I might sleep through the entire trip up North. About 100 miles in, with me chatting away he finally turns to me and says, "Honey I love you, but I thought you were going to sleep?" I responded with a smile, sounds like the perfect time to do so. :) We stopped in Livermore to see a friend of mine, had an ok late lunch early dinner. As we were leaving Livermore, Nick and I noticed one of the tires was making an odd sound when Nick applied the brakes. I tried to make him pull over, however he was sure the car could wait until we got to the hotel- he would fix the problem there. Just as we were about to hit the Bay Bridge, we heard a thump, screeching and saw a tire flying down the side of the highway. The tire was our tire and we were officially driving on the rotor. *sigh* We were able to safely pull over to the side of the road, and a couple of people stopped, got out and made sure we were ok. Would not leave until we confirmed we had workable cell phones, and AAA. We assured them we would be ok. I contacted AAA, but because I was not "in my usual territory" I needed to be transferred. I tried to the best of my ability to describe to the AAA person where we were, and what we needed. However 3 hours later, the FOURTH tow truck that comes along is the one that tows us to a Toyota dealership. The first Toyota dealership was closed, on accounting the accident had happened at 6:30pm the tow truck did not even get the car onto the truck until closer to 10pm. So of course I tell him to go ahead and take us to a different Toyota dealership. The second one was not open, however did have space and a key drop box so that we could leave the car at that location. By this point it is around 11:30, and I am officially exhausted. We beg a friend of a friend to come and get us from Oakland. We could have taken the Bart into San Francisco, and then taken the underground, however I just wanted to get to our hostel. A long time later, we checked into our hostel and put our stuff in our room. We were sharing the space with two guys from England. Nick decided he suddenly was not tired, so we went out to get some booze. A day such as ours requires some serious drowning of alcohol. The next day and a call to the insurance company and a call to the Toyota dealership, we go back out to Oakland and take everything out of the car with all of his personal information on it. The insurance company said they would not cover the expenses because there was not accident. Toyota told him the damages were about $4,500. Nick loves his car, as do I. It is the first new car he has ever purchased and paid off. Needless to say, Nick was quite heartbroken to hear the car might not be fixable. After sitting on the information from the dealership and the insurance company for about 2 weeks, as well as doing research, Nick finally calls the insurance company back. They apologized profusely for the earlier agent's actions of not covering the damages on the car. They further more authorized all work to be done on the car, and told Nick he just had to pay his deductible, about $500. The funny part? Nick goes back up to Oakland to retrieve his car, he is fully prepared to sign over his deductible to the Toyota dealership-per his insurance company, but he does not need to. Apparently the Toyota dealership performed more work on the car than what the insurance company authorized, so it voided Nick's deducible. Nick was able to walk away from the Toyota dealership with his car and checkbook intact. Lucky duck, right?

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Privacy matter

Has everyone seen the article/news story about people who have been asked to give out or log into Facebook while in a job interview? Here is the link to one of many internet articles about it. In light of the recent decision of the House to reject the Password Privacy Amendment, this is my thoughts on the matter.

Since reading this article, my mind has gone back and forth over this issue. On one hand I do understand this is an easier and much cheaper form of a background check. I also understand things that are put on Facebook are "public" and therefore everyone has a right to see it. I also understand that when you agree to the terms of Facebook you are almost waiving any and all rights to anything and everything that you or anyone else puts up. I do understand, to a point, that background checks are expensive and would not necessarily turn up anything about gang affiliations a person might have. However there is a different side as well.

For some people, such as myself, I keep up a Facebook account because it allows me to stay connected to present and past friends. Whereas fifty years ago, I would most likely be writing letters to friends every single day, now I can simply send them a message in Facebook or write on their "wall." In this aspect, and most likely because of the industry I currently work in as well as want to work in, I do not see the need for potential or current employers to look through my Facebook account, or to request my log in information in an interview. This economy is horrific, it is difficult to even get an interview most of the time, however to me, to ask for my Facebook information would be the equivalent of giving a person my house keys. I am fairly political on my Facebook, and love to listen to both viewpoints for my friend's political rantings. Would I want others to see this information? I do not think so. I am not a banker, nor a trader or a police officer. I have no desire to be in those industries, nor do I have any desire to gain any political or government position. So on this particular issue, I would have to say, employers have no need to gain access to my information. However if I did want a position such as was listed, I could understand.

One such article spook on how a correctional officer, for a state prison, was asked for his information to Facebook, in this case I do not see an issue with it. When dealing with prisoners, or prior felons I would want a complete background check, including this to ensure not only the safety of the inmates but also the safety of the fellow officers. However on the flip side, say a banker applies for a job and is told he has received a job offer. The company asks for his Facebook information and because they find he is a gay male, the job offer is rescinded. Is this constitutional? There are many HR practices that would state otherwise, and the person would be able to sue the company over this. But how far is too far?

Can there be a line drawn in the sand that states who can be asked for personal information such as this? I have very mixed feelings about this. While I do think it should be allowed for certain positions, at what point during this type of background check would a company be able to rescind a job offer without discrimination, and to what extent should Facebook "control" what users are allowed to post? Should all of this type of information be controlled by Facebook? Should Facebook be the one to say, "You cannot post materials such as this on our social networking site."

These are just my thoughts so far.

Personally I have made a decision to change my name on Facebook, Twitter as well as here. I also made the decision to unlink all account I have from one another. I no longer have my LinkedIn linked to any other account. A good thing? Maybe, but for now it was the decision I made, and being a free country, I can unmake my decision at any time.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

End of January

Here it is the end of January. It has been a nice and peaceful month, in all honesty. Nick and I have been staying at home or going for local hikes on our days off, just saving some money for our next trip.
I am excited, we are starting to plan for a trip to San Francisco for the Bay to Breakers run in May, that should be a blast. I am also trying to convince him to go to San Diego for a couple of days in March for his Spring Break. :-) More than anything however, I am planning a trip to Syracuse, NY. I miss it so much. I was originally trying to plan my trip while it would be nice and cool and cold, however I realized there is more to do when it is gross and hot there. :-) I really would like to go sailing with my friend Melissa, and show Nick all around Syracuse. He has never been there before, and I am trying very hard to convince him going is a good idea.
Still chugging away at school for now, working out and in general trying to remain stress free. For now it is a beautiful day outside, I think I will go sit in the sun and give Benny some of my undivided attention.

Friday, January 13, 2012

NYE-Las Vegas Style

I went to Las Vegas for the very first time. Liked it cause I with the bf, but do not care for the gambling. Broke even only at the Excabiler. Loved the tigers at MGM Grand. Loved the pansy ceiling at the Bellagio. And here is some eye candy. Yeah what can I say, Nick loves to kiss me. Tee hee hee :-)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Headache please go away...

My brother has come home for the holidays, I sometimes wonder who defends our military bases during the holidays as most people I know come home during this time. What this means is tense living situation, my brother burning through oodles of my mother's hard earned money and in general him telling us the house is a disaster area.
Now my brother is in the Navy, has been since June, however it means that his starting salary is 2x what mine is. However he has had my mother buying everything for him, whatever. Since moving back I have always made way less than him, payed off all my debts and do not live off my mother.
Anywho when I say that he thinks our house is a disaster area, it means that I never clean the house. I do clean, I use vinegar and baking soda to clean everything, which means I usually have to clean the house 2x a week. But I have four dogs and two cats, so I am not a fan of using bleach or pinesol to clean. Thus now because he is using those chemicals all over the house, I now have a raging headache. And I am trying to finish an overdue paper in the midst of this all. Joy to the world! Don't cha just love the holidays?