A Year of Saving: The 52 Week Saving Challenge

Standard

I’m sure plenty of people have seen the 52 Week challenge posted somewhere on the internet. I did last year and it was a really great way for me to save up money this past year. The challenge, for those of you that don’t know, is each week you save the dollar amount for the week in the year we are up to. The first week you save one dollar, the second week two, the third three, and so on.  Below is a link to a pdf chart of how that money ends up accumulating. (I created my own  because all the images I found on the internet have an error.)  At the end of the year you end up with a little over thirteen hundred dollars.

I figured it seems easy enough and I needed to save up for a lot. Since I don’t trust myself with the money within reached, I used an online savings account and transferred the money each week. When I started I felt like it was easy enough and the first couple months it was adding up real quick. Before I even knew it I was up to a hundred dollars, and I hadn’t missed a dime of it.  For years I’ve had a very limited budget so usually saving doesn’t feel like an option. Eventually,  it did get tougher and I dipped into the last of my previous savings. Mainly it was so I could stay on track and still get a bill paid.  As it started to get tougher it also didn’t seem to be adding up too quickly. When I finally hit six hundred it seemed like it took forever, but it felt really good. Luckily around October I began working full time. So at the end of the year when its hardest to save and the deposit is higher I actually breezed right through.

Around Thanksgiving, I had to dip into it to buy some desperately needed items that I had planned on using the money for anyway. One of them being my brand new computer, which will hopefully help me get more work done. (The old was was barely holding together and it took hours to do the smallest tasks.)  Even after that I still kept making the weekly deposits for the rest of the year. I still have a couple hundred to play around with and am planning on what to do with it. I’m really glad I did this and that I do have the extra money to play around with. It was pretty easy and even once it started getting challenging it felt good to work towards a goal. I’m would like to try something a little more challenging this year so I can save up even more. I’m not sure what to do though. I guess I should look around for some other challenges and savings techniques. If you know of any I’d love to hear about it.

52 Week Savings Challenge – Sheet1

Teeth by Hugh Gallagher

Standard

I have had this novel in my collection for sometime but, only recently decided to read it. It was an excellent book. It follows the life of a young writer who became quite well-known and famous in a circle of young adults in the alterantive sub-culture. The interesting thing is he is almost more famous for his teeth than he is for his writing.  Actually a good amount of his writing does have to do with his teeth, so its almost interchangeable. He is well-known for his teeth because he has a mouth full of broken teeth he got after a interesting incedent in his senior year of high school.

The book is about him searching for where to go in life. After moving to New York and working for his favorite magazine, it folds, everybody else begins to move on to new endeavors in life, while he still does not know where to go. Somehow his mouth full of teeth always come back to be the center of attention. The writing was excellent and reading about the alternative scene brought back memories. The writer used a lot of disguised cultural references from the 90’s to bring you back to that time. My favorite are the band Rage Against the Chilli Pepper, the obvious stand in for MTV The Channel, the teen magazine Bop Cheeze , and the music festival Chockapolacka. Gallager was able to completely capture the music, mood, and characters of that time.

However, with all the cultural references, crazy plot lines, bizarre characters and the main characters plight into the real world, the part of this book that hit a soft spot with me was Neils teeth problems. Having recently lost my front tooth in a extremely stupid concert incedent I feel for him and the hardship he has to go through with concern over his teeth. Not having much money instead of simply going through everything at once and fixing his teeth as his dentist recommends he waits for them to fall apart one at a time. He then must suffer through dentist visit after visit of root canals and extractions. Though my ordeal is not as serious, I was able to easily empathise with him and his struggles.