Sunday, April 20, 2008

Vanguard rocks and bookmarks

It's an odd thing to be utterly broke and at the same time make investment decisions on 2 years worth of retirement contributions. Money I can't use for 30 years doesn't seem real, which makes the process a bit more fun.

My first rollover went through, and I was finally able to put my money where my research is:

  • 28% into Vanguard Total Stock Mkt Idx (VTSMX)
  • 22% into Vanguard Total Intl Stock Index (VGTSX)
  • 22% into Vanguard REIT Index (VGSIX)
  • 7% into a stock
  • 21% to be determined
(I'm sharing for the sake of interest, I'm not advocating you do the same thing. Situations differ. Do research.)

I mailed the paperwork for another (my last) rollover yesterday, so I have a few more decisions to make. I ended up not converting any to Roth because in light of not having a 401(k) anymore, if I start mucking around with conversions I'm worried we'll have too much taxable income and bad things will happen like our tax bracket will change. (Although of all possible problems in the world, I would be ecstatic if that's the worst life throws at us this year.)

We used our government coupon to buy a TV Converter Box at Best Buy yesterday. Interestingly, the coupon was $25 shy of the box price, but we're one of those households that doesn't have a digital cable box so we didn't want to take any chances. And the coupon was better than nothing.

This weekend has been all about making bookmarks. Jer and I parked ourselves on the couch Friday night and worked for about 4 hours and then another 4 hours last night, stickering, sleeving, and tasseling approximately 500 bookmarks. The second season of Torchwood and an abundance of hail kept us entertained while we worked -- though now I peek through the blinds and see blue skies and sun.

I've inventoried 95 prints so far -- which means I've matted, labeled, sealed, and entered them in the database -- and I still have another "finished" stack to enter. Then I should make more product with what I have. No more buying supplies -- except for emergencies -- until the credit card billing period ends in a few days since I've already paid it off this month.

The last couple of days have been great getting to spend time with Jer; it can be tough going so many days between sightings. I accomplished a lot this month with the business. And now we're in the home stretch. First show is May 17 and 18 in the University District. If you make it out there, stop by and say hi. I won't bite.

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