February 1, 2013

Good intentions gone awry: extra-beaded dress via flash sale

We’re inundated with these flash sale sites these days, and even though there is occasionally a good deal, it seemed like a better idea to unsubscribe to all of them because I felt like it was distracting and there were so few petite-friendly options that go on sale (that I know of) that it seemed pointless.

I should have blogged about doing it, that probably would have kept me honest. But I didn’t. And I didn’t. For once, I let that fear of missing out on the one time a petite brand would go on sale because (creaky voice) two years ago Gilt carried a brand I could actually wear for 40% less than I could find it anywhere else and I ought to have bought then!

Almost inevitably, something caught my eye a few months ago on ideeli.com* and I put myself on the waitlist. To “think about it” (sucker, heh). It came back around as available in my size and here we are, I have myself a shiny dress. Literally.


Even though it’s not 100% perfect, it very nearly is. It just has to lose an inch in the shoulders and it should pretty much be perfect. I cringe at the idea of tailoring such a heavily beaded dress though. My imagination runs amok with how easily it could be ruined. This is why I’ve never trusted myself with such nice things before.

The risk of ordering from this particular site is their return policy, in my opinion. They will only issue the full amount in credit or part of the return less the shipping free if you want your cash back.  They also charge $10 in shipping for every 30 days so you pay once and then have 30 days to keep buying for “free” shipping. Really, it just divvies up the cost of that shipping fee among your other purchases but I’m not a fan of the lure it’s meant to be: Buy more, it’s “free” now!

I hate paying for shipping and hate losing money on a return so I had to be pretty committed to the purchase and pretty sure that the sizing is right. I will admit even after checking the sizing carefully on this and another dress it still felt like a gamble.

The other one actually fit like a glove, also literally. But it still needs a minor creative alteration for modesty’s sake – the back of the dress dips just a shade too low.

There’s a bit of me that feels like there are far too many dresses in the closet already so they should go back and damn the shipping cost but they’re .. so .. shiny.

*Referral link if you want to enable me further

April 13, 2012

Speaking of impulse control ….

TeacHer Finance’s attempts to find her frugal again had me laughing over my similar attempts to find my own sanity, financial and otherwise. 

I was just chastising myself the other night for craving some really lovely luggage as shared by Feather Factor here. That was after wanting to book a pricey Michelin star restaurant for a surprise for PiC. That plan was junked, btw, because it’s nearly impossible to get a reservation and he’d gone and bought himself concert tickets. Then there were sales. Lots of sales. Ignore. Never mind the new dog bed. Rental cars, hotel rooms, more travel for other obligations.

Clearly my brain’d gone, just back from a trip (pictures to come) where the cost of living was astronomical, I think my impulse control on spending and being sensible had just gone kaput. As usual, this mouse was fed a cookie and, and, and ….!

Anyway, I talked myself off that particular tower when I remembered what kind of traveler I really am: prone to dropping/tripping over/leaning on/pushing over things, going into dirty dusty outdoorsy or urban places, business traveling or back-to-home traveling, not glamorous destination vacationy traveling. That’s not the sort of person who has gorgeous luggage!  That’s the sort of person who stuffs up a duffel and a pack and rolls on out the door having forgotten two essential things. (Five, this last trip.)

Aspirationally I’d love to be that fabulously coiffed, trimmed traveler with the good shined up luggage, I mentally shop like Sarah (Paranoid Asteroid) but at the end of the day, we both know that, unless someone else is doing up my hair and scrubbing out the stains in my cargos that I just dumped PiC’s coffee all over, as you do before a five hour road trip, I’m not going anywhere as anyone’s pretty little lady.

Nor will I be any kind of a power careerist simply because I’m dressed to the nines. If I am. I’m doing well just to be not-terribly-mismatched during the work week but as that in itself is a chore, I often find myself reverting to trying to buy a sense of style and fashion through the insights of the petite fashion bloggers.

Admittedly, I might succumb to a sale this weekend for a staple piece or two but the best part of valor may really be to shut off the valve of spending entirely and not even try this halfhearted resistance. We all know it barely works on me.

Besides, I have bigger things to save for, like Comic-Con!

January 26, 2010

Investing: I did it all wrong

I’m blushing right now. I’ve talked about dipping my toe into building a modest portfolio before. Bought my first set of shares, decided on a Watch List of about ten stocks with decent dividends and sat back to wait. I was waiting for: more money to spend, and lower prices all around. After all, I’d learned from my 10 share experience, right?  


I knew that Berkshire Hathaway was going to split the B-shares 50-1 on Thursday and that put individual shares within reach starting in the $60s per share.  A little knowledge, my friends, is indeed a dangerous thing.

Kinda like Mapgirl, except I had the warning in her comment specifically about BRKB: I jumped too soon.

With just over $500 sitting in the account, it’s not like I was flush with cash but … *ducking head*  I was bedazzled by the brand name of BRK.B and bought 7 shares.  I know! I know!  Of all the things to impulse buy!  I’ve been seduced by a name and a deal. And 7??  What is that number about?

Feels like this is the beginning of a slippery slope, innit?  The buying strategy for this investment account was to buy more than 10 shares at a time of a good company at a low price that paid decent dividends.  Watch List, remember?

Ah well, not really.  There’s a simple solution to that mistake.  I have no more ready money.

Thus ends my foray into investing through the Trade King account until I scare up an income and have the cash flow to divert.

Ed Note: Yes, BRK.B is under $70 and has been since I bought the stock. Le sigh. I have no one but myself to blame. Myself and this horrendous cold that won’t go away. 

By request: 

December 12, 2008

Spending Gremlins

The feeling of material satiety has worn off with a vengeance. This feels a bit like a rebound from my “Simplify, simplify” mode and I’m not fighting it as hard as I should. The e-fund is still fine, but I hit a plateau when I got sick for two weeks. That meant no overtime. In fact, I had to burn some sick time. That’s what it’s for and I’m grateful to have it, but with the ability to overearn has gone my spending/acquisitive restraint and determination to build up the money reserves while I still can.

1. The dental visit made me feel like I should check with my dentist friend about whether or not he’d recommend getting a new electric toothbrush. I don’t want a single additional cavity, and since the current dental care regimen is evidently not doing the job, something needs to change. New electric toothbrush: ~$100?
2. Flat iron for self, friend (X-mas gift): $150?
3. Laptop: $650?
4. Boots: My older pair are too worn and, most importantly, hurt my feet. Winter weather always makes me long for comfortable boots to keep me warm, and browsing online hasn’t helped the neediness: $50? $70? Meh.
5. New towels: I’ll use a gift card.
6. Interview suit: I keep thinking that I can just wear my old one but let’s not kid ourselves — I couldn’t, er, latch the hook in July and I won’t be able to now, either. There’s an odd feeling: $200?
7. New coat: The thought of moving to a place that has Real Winter scares the bejeebers out of me. That’s probably why I can’t stop dreaming of new puffy coats, gloves that actually fit, scarves, hats and vests. 40 degrees is COLD, people! Frigid! Unbearable!

Where do I think this money is coming from?? Nuts. I’ll pass on the boots, coat, and the flat iron for myself. The travel/gift fund can take care of the flat iron gift and part of the laptop, the rest will have to come out of my expenses. Er, the suit? Well, let’s see if I can cobble together a sharp enough outfit from my regular business clothing to get by. Otherwise, I might try the (new! local!) H&M for separates to be tailored. I don’t want to cheap out on an interview outfit but I shouldn’t bust into the savings, either. I need that for rent! (Then again, I need a new job to pay the rent, too.)

Oooh there’s that “I hate spending money” feeling back. Whew, I thought I’d lost my mind there.

Is anyone else self-gifting this season?

November 28, 2008

Should I or shun’t I?

Have been going back and forth with myself literally since I woke up this morning. That and reading are all I’ve had the energy to do.

Best Buy has this lovely laptop that’s just right, priced at $672 after tax and shipping.

I was prepared to spend about $400 if an unexpected deal came up, but almost $700?

Yes: it’s got all the specs I want, it’s a decent deal, I will need a laptop that functions off the leash at some point.
No: really don’t feel right spending that kind of money right now. (Disclaimer: I do always say that, and this could very well be the iPod-I-Never-Bought sort of deal. I lie to myself and say that I *will* buy that item, “just not right now.” I do this all the time about electronics.)

Have a feeling that I’ll make a decision by passively waiting out the clock and not actively deciding since I’ve stared at my balance sheets for a long time and can’t see an easy pot from which to “steal” the money. Spender’s remorse generally trumps non-buyer’s regret. Also, it still feels like a want and not a need.

Edit: Ok, I have a compromise. If the truck is squared away by tomorrow afternoon, thereby taking the loan off my balance sheets, and the deal is still available, I will be ok with buying it. If not, better luck on Monday!

April 15, 2008

Two-track mind: Stocks and Travel

For whatever reason, I cannot seem to get my mind focused on anything but investing or travel tonight. The first is simple: I finally read my Rollover IRA prospectus last night, figured out that I have a little over a thousand dollars invested in an REIT mutual fund that’s made roughly $200 in the last four years, and I don’t want to pay another $15 annual maintenance fee because I’ve been too lazy to get my butt in gear and roll this over to my Vanguard accounts. Then, too, I’ve been talking stocks with a friend who is actually quite experienced in investing and I’ve been feeling completely out of my depth, so I want to start dipping my toe into the market. Kind of reminds me of Sistah Ant’s comment about being jealous of a teenager with her own stocks 🙂

The second? I’m desperate to get away. For a change of scenery, of pace. Just to get away from this life and my job and the bad management and frustrating workload and passive aggressive BS. I can’t move out until I have the money covered for first and last, start up costs, maintenance just in case money. Oh and a roommate. I need a roommate. So now I’m overwhelmed by this need to go somewhere exotic like Bali, the Bahamas, Mazatlan, Los Cabos.

This might be a need to shed my feathers for the summer, now that we’ve ridden through our first heat wave and an oppressive fog has rolled in to mock us, but whatever it is, I’m going stir crazy tonight. [Wait. Feathers? Shed my feathers? Look at that, I don’t even know what I’m saying anymore. Shed my winter coat! That’s the analogy I meant.] I’m itching to grab someone and just take off for a weekend. Reminding myself that I don’t actually have cash to spare isn’t helping tonight, especially not when I know that I’ve got the e-fund covered and throwing a couple-few hundred dollars at this getaway wouldn’t break me. It wouldn’t be good for the budget, but it wouldn’t break me. *sigh* I should let this run its course, and hope that I don’t accidentally find a really good deal tonight 🙂 Like a three day cruise to Mexico for a couple hundred dollars. Hmmmm……

Ack! Quick! Snap out of it!!

July 8, 2007

The Weekend and an Impulse Buy

I’m back from a very nice weekend with BoyDucky. We just hung out with friends and each other. All in all, it was Quite Relaxing.

This trip, I only took one backpack of clothing and few very necessary odds and ends like my book, an extra book, my iPod in case I ran out of reading material and my planner which is attached by umbilical cord. It was an effort to save my shoulders from the duffel-slump that’s caused by dragging a 40 pound duffel around the airport, and to prevent me from accidentally shopping. It worked, until I saw this beach towel (the middle one) and the 60% off headline in the ad at Mervyn’s:

Sadly, it was not at the lowest end of the sale price range (4.79) but neither was it at the high end (13.97). I’m ashamed to say I still wanted it. So, as penance, I’m going to return the pink flowery dress, and embroidered sleeveless shirt that I bought from Macy’s on sale last week. I don’t NEED them, I just really liked them. Still, they’ll go back so that I can indulge in this childish impulse buy instead. *tsk*

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