Gold, Frankenstein and Myrrh

I had my knee operated on a couple of weeks back and I am starting to feel a little stir crazy. I am feeling better than I have in a long while, and the knee is pretty good, too. Lots of sleep and no stress from work have removed the bags from under my eyes and I think I look about 10 years younger. I am not looking forward to returning to the rat race on Monday.

One of the things I did while healing up was to tackle the filing cabinet. Jenny and I started merging our records last year, but we kind of got side-tracked with pregnancy and having a baby. I took an afternoon and attacked it, finding all kinds of stuff that could be gotten rid of and lots of items that kind of need our attention.

One of these items is my sad IRA account. I rolled my State Street 401(k) over into it in 2006 and have not really thought about it since. Six years of not adding a nickel. That is going to come back to haunt us. So, I am going to make an effort to try to add to this account every pay period going forward. THIS is a savings account. What we have at the credit union linked to the checking account is basically an electronic envelope. Albert Einstein may not have said it, but compound interest is a very nice piece of magic. I also kicked the fund choices in order to try and drive up the interest rate a bit to make up for what I lost during that whole Great Recession thing.
A basic 5% annual return on $5000 deposited yearly

Following on the heels of all of that, I tackled the checking account next. Our credit union gives us access to Quicken’s FinanceWorks tool, which is basically Mint.com without the ads. I started adding my external accounts to the CU and removed them from Mint…which I have not been using, so they do not need to have my info. I then deleted my Mint account. Last night I started in on clearing up all of the “Uncategorized” purchases and today I finally finished it up for the entire year. I am going to try to keep up with this tool, as it really does make it easy to see where the money is going. Hint: It is the baby (via Amazon) and the mortgage.

This evening I made “natural” deodorant for the first time. Funny thing. In researching what essential oil to use (hint: you want an antibiotic one at the very least), I found that patchouli is the mack daddy for this job! Anti-biotic, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, etc, etc. Basically, patchouli was born to the job. But Jenny is not a fan, so we had to go to a couple of hippie shoppes yesterday in search of an oil that would work. I narrowed my choices down to about six that would do the basic job, but I also needed to smell them. In the end, I came upon myrrh. It seems to mix well with my particular brand of underarm funk. Following the simple recipe on this page, I now have the most expensive deodorant ever made, but this cost should get lower with each new batch I make. I may run the number on it later. My favorite part was filling up an old Degree for Men stick deodorant dispenser (another hint: though the bottom). I am waiting for it to solidify now. A point of clarification on the process outlined on that page, though. A quart mason jar is entirely larger than is required. An 8oz jar would do. You won’t get 8oz, but you have never felt a Degree for Men (3.5oz) feel so heavy. It is over 4oz for sure.

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