I had grand plans of working on some posts while at my parents’ house last week. Clearly, that plan didn’t go so well. Not that I’m complaining – I was having such a great time with my family that I didn’t want to spend much time on the computer at all. (Plus my parents live in a fairly rural area with satellite internet, so with the bad weather, the internet connection was spotty and painfully slow.)
I got back home safe and sound. I was definitely one of the lucky ones. My travel wasn’t affected by the weather whatsoever. Well, I take that back. I was scheduled to fly out last Friday and had a connection through Chicago. My connection got cancelled about 18 hours before my flight. I got a text message to that effect and panicked. I called the airline and they said “Oh, we’ve already corrected that and booked you on a direct flight that leaves about 20 minutes later than you were scheduled to leave.” I got an e-mail about it a few hours later. I think the reason the text came through is because I had alerts set up to notify me of any changes in my flight. Because I had set the notification by flight number and not by traveler (I don’t think you can do that through this airline), I didn’t receive the immediate text of the itinerary change.
All in all, I really lucked out. I booked this flight back in June, before the baggage fees were put into place. I booked early because I managed to get a flight on miles. After taxes, I paid $10, so I figured if I had to pay the baggage fees anyway, it still was a pretty cheap flight. My final itinerary did change from my initial purchase, but instead of connections, I had two direct flights. And the question of a baggage fee was never even brought up.
My holiday was wonderful. As always, my family went overboard with incredibly thoughtful gifts. My mom heard me complain about how cold my office always is and so today, I’m sitting at my desk wearing a new cardigan and considering putting on the fingerless gloves she bought me. Yes, I need gloves at my desk.
I also received some cash for my birthday and for Christmas to be put towards fun things. I was specifically instructed not to save the money. That’s easier said than done. But some of it is going into my vacation fund and some of it is going towards some new clothes for work and maybe some things for my home that I’ve wanted to pick up. I’m not used to spending like that, but my family knows how hard I work to save, so I was specifically instructed that I had to spend this money. Maybe not this week, maybe not this month, but it was for spending on myself. It’s going to be nice to have some money to treat myself.
How was your holiday?
Megan is a 40-something government employee in the Washington, DC area. She got interested in Personal Finance when she got out of college and realized that her paycheck wasn’t going to go as far as she had hoped. Since starting this blog, she has managed to buy a house and make a solid start on her retirement goals, and hopes to help others do the same. Here is her story:
In 2007, I was a gainfully employed 20-something with no debt but not a lot of knowledge about personal finance. It was a co-worker’s comment about Roth IRAs that sent me to the internet, searching for information. It was then that I realized that I really didn’t know a whole lot about personal finance and that my current financial situation was due a lot to inherent frugal tendencies, generous family members, a fear of debt, and good luck. While that was working for me, clearly I needed a better plan.
While I had no debt, I was also pretty much living paycheck to paycheck and not worrying about going over budget (I say this as if I had a real budget) because I had an emergency fund set aside to cover any overages.
Except that’s not what an emergency fund is for.
So I did a lot of research, read a lot of blogs, and decided that I needed a plan. I needed to budget. I needed to know what I was spending my money on. I needed to prepare for the future.
I decided to create a blog not only to make myself accountable to others but also to share the knowledge that I gained along the way. I’ve learned so much from my fellow bloggers, and I hope that my readers can find something useful in what I have to share as well.
Fabulously Broke says
Your family sounds WONDERFUL.
How thoughtful to give fingerless gloves!
Fabulously Broke in the City
Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver…
J. Money says
Welcome back! Had a grand ol’ time myself, but now ready to get back to “the real world” 🙂 Happy New Year!
That sounds like a great break! I did the same thing–$10 ticket, but I was too late to get free baggage. For some reason, I had to pay $15 on the way back, but 0 on the way there.
Have a great new year!
Money Maus says
This is why I try to ALWAYS travel light. I rarely check a bag anymore and do very well with carry-on only – though most of my trips tend to be short, or I have some clothes where I am going when I visit my family. 🙂
And I am ALWAYS cold in my office, too! I haven’t gone so far as to consider fingerless gloves, but that is a great idea. I got a fantastic warm cardigan from my Mom for Christmas as well, and I love having it in the office instead of my old bulky fleece! You family sounds similar to mine, glad you had a great vacation. 🙂
I think I am the exact opposite, Money Maus. Not that I don’t travel light, I do. I was gone for 10 days this trip, and definitely did laundry in the middle of things. But if I’m going for more than a weekend, I almost always check a bag. I have bruised my collarbone more than once by carrying a too-heavy shoulder bag through the airport. If I’ve got a direct flight, that’s a different story, but if I have connections, I’d rather just have my backpack to deal with.