how long will it take me to pay off my credit card debt

A Penny For Your Thoughts, £400 For Your Meal

its now been a clean 2 weeks since i posted the last thing so here we go i guess,,, next thing i post should be the angus thongs au so i hope this tides you all over xxx

my love to @alrightevans @alrightpotter and @prongsyouignoramus for helping me get it from the mess it was when i wrote it 18 months ago to this

AO3


8:50. Avery glances at the bill and goes down to his car to retrieve his conveniently forgotten wallet.

8:59. Malfoy goes down to see what’s keeping him.

9:29. Nott slips out to answer an important call.

9:44. Mulciber dons his coat to take a piss.

9:51. Severus excuses himself for a quick fag, and Lily is left sitting alone at their table with a growing sense of suspicion.

9:53. Lily finally convinces herself to look at the bill, and her stomach drops to her knees.

11:41. “Ma’am?” the waitress asks, and Lily was sure she’d seen the worst of the girl’s frown, but she was wrong.

“A-another glass, please,” she mumbles, and the waitress’ eye roll and impatient huff says it all. There are eight or nine completely full glasses in a little grove in front of her already, and she doesn’t exactly have a plan of action, but at least this is buying her more time.

She’s buying herself more time, with money she doesn’t have.

“Of course,” the waitress spits, and sweeps away.

This close to midnight, Lily’s fairly confident they’d like to shut up shop shortly. She tears her eyes away from the frankly excessive amount of wine sitting full in front her, and glances around the previously bustling dining hall. She almost, almost pegs herself as the last diner, but there’s a man about her age on the other side of the room. He has a dozen or so desserts scattered around him, each as untouched as every one of her wine glasses. He gives her a tight smile as they make eye contact, and turns back to his food, pensive. Lily does the same.

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Money Magic

My earliest magic was money and prosperity magic, and it has served me well. I could spend whatever I wanted and there was always cash left in the bank. However, now it is time for me to re-up my money magic spells so I thought I would share a little about how I do this, and some thoughts I have about money magic in general. This is kind of focused on adults who have the possibility of making money through government assistance, jobs, work, or whatever.

There are different kinds of money magic. There is magic to increase the funds you already have, magic to erase debts, magic to stop spending, magic to get jobs and work, and magic to gather new funds when you are starting from nothing. There is also a difference between prosperity, money, and wealth. I will share my opinions on these definitions!

Money is just cash. It is very much like a spirit (in fact I believe it is). If we disrespect it and abuse it, money leaves us. It exists, but we can only access it through representations because it is nonphysical. Money magic works on the premise of improving your relationship with the spirit of money and inviting it in to your welcoming life.

Wealth is the state of having lots of money. Wealth for me is different than wealth for you, because a lot of money to me is different from a lot of money to you. Someone can have lots of wealth but still have a poor relationship with money, be in debt, spend frivolously, and so on.

Prosperity is the state of being, well, prosperous. Money is an ingredient of prosperity, but that’s not the whole story. Prosperity is being in a state of little or no debt, having good cash inflow, low cash outflow, and most importantly, being in a healthy relationship with the universe where you are given what you need and share what you don’t need with others.

So you can do money magic to garner lots of wealth, but this doesn’t necessarily mean you are being prosperous. In general: Do money magic to accumulate wealth, and put that wealth towards building your prosperity.

Money magic itself is incredibly simple and I will share some spells later on. The way money magic will manifest depends on the cash inflows in your life. If you have a job, money will likely come to you through bonuses, a raise, or most likely, extra hours. If you don’t have a job money can come in form of gifts, unexpected opportunities, checks from the government, or totally unexpected forms. I believe when it comes to money magic you should be aware of your cash inflow. For me it is a part time job. For you it could be a job, welfare, an allowance, your own business, or something you haven’t discovered yet. Part of money magic is strengthening these channels to allow more money to flow through.

Money magic will garner wealth on its own. But you always have to manage your prosperity, which is best done through a prosperity altar. A prosperity altar is easy to build even if you are not out about your practice. All you need is a container like a large shoe box or an empty table or shelf surface. A prosperity altar works to strengthen your channels of incoming prosperity and gives you a command center to manage all your money magic together.

I’d like to take a brief moment to talk about greed. We’re all spiritual people and maybe that has a connotation of being separated from the material world. But you know what, I’m a living human bean. I need food. I need gas in my car. I need money for fruity beverages. I have student loans, and I need a new pair of shoes. I’m not a spirit, I live in the physical world, and so do you. But there isn’t a darn thing wrong with money magic when we are all young people struggling to survive in a shit economy and doing the best for ourselves in this turbulent world. Really good prosperity magic isn’t about hoarding money like a dragon. It’s about a natural give and take, where you have a surplus that you can freely move and work with and it’s beautiful.

So, prosperity altars! A good prosperity altar will have things that draw in money. My prosperity altar has two money drawing talismans (that badly need to be refreshed), and items that represent wealth like a jar of gold flakes, cash money (to draw cash back in), plants of prosperity like basil, cinnamon, and chamomile, and candles I burn with money drawing oil. Send me a message if you need more info on building an altar! Just remember that everything you put on the altar, unintentionally or not, draws things in. Dust on your altar will draw things in. Keep it well managed and clean once a week at least. One very good strategy is to get a magnet, a lodestone, or lodestone oil. Keep it with money and charge it to bring more and more money to you. As you get a single dollar, five, twenty, or more, keep adding every spare cent to this money pile and wait for it to draw more money in.

Set up a prosperity altar in whatever way feels intuitive and right to you, then get started on that money magic!

A very simple money spell is to meditate with a candle. Imagine the candle is a magnet and will draw in anything you desire. Focus on money! Imagine extra hours at work, an unexpected check, a debt being paid off, whatever comes to your mind. Eventually you will feel the candle is “full” or “ready”. Make a gesture of sealing over the candle like “so mote it be” and burn it on or near your prosperity altar with a prayer that it draws in money for you.

Once each morning, do a two minute meditation. Focus on the concepts of your incoming money streams and make those pipelines bigger, stronger, and more energetic. Focus on the concepts of your outgoing money lines and shrink them, put filters in it to help you catch yourself before you spend money, and even put a valve on top to turn off and on as you need it. At the end of each day, repeat this two minute meditation to check on your pipelines and makes sure they are good and healthy. Once they seem to be working in really good order, repeat this meditation once a week.

“First comes the working, then comes the work,” as they say. If you need money, you need to open up channels where money can come through to you. If you are disabled and unable to work a traditional job, could you sell crafts on the side, read tarot for money, or do magic for money? Try to brainstorm and think of ways money can come to you. As your imagination opens up to new possibilities, magical channels are simultaneously opened. But even if you seriously cannot think of any way you could possibly earn money, put faith in the magic.

Suppose you have tried money magic before and gotten only $10 or a coupon or something, or you’re really blocked and stuck. Nothing is working for you. You can’t get more hours, you can’t get a better job, your money spells aren’t manifesting. All you need is a good unblocking.

Get hyssop if you can, otherwise bay leaf and salt will work wonders. Brew a very strong bay leaf tea and pour it and the bay leaves in to a bath filled with salt. Stir the bath counter-clockwise with your hand and ask the spirits of salt and bay leaf to uncross you and make you able to receive blessings again. Soak in the bath for as long as you need. If you have no bath, grind bay leaf and salt in to an olive oil scrub. Scrub your whole body, head to toe (even in your hair!) and finish by rubbing the soles of your feet. Shower off as usual. Repeat this ritual once a week.

For a good prosperity bath, make a basil and chamomile tea. Strain it and add it to the bath, or wash yourself with it using a wash cloth, then shower. Visualize these powerful financial plants radically strengthening and opening up your cash flow pipelines and drawing money down towards you. Repeat this weekly – but no more regularly than that.

For a job spell, make a jar. Put in it basil, chamomile, cinnamon, quartz points, and any other money drawing stones, crystals, items, charms, plants, or anything you can think of. Meditate with it for five minutes a day, focusing on how powerful this jar is at its ability to draw wealth to you. Put business cards in from the places you want to work at and ask the job to open paths to these businesses. When submitting a written application, store it under the jar for a full day for its blessings.

Part of money magic is respecting money, and that means having a plan for money. Read books about financial management. Write down all your debts, your incomes, and your expenses. Make a solid plan for paying them off as best as you can, even if this means getting extensions on payments, putting $5 towards your credit card, or saving $5 a paycheck. When you have a framework in your life, money will start coming in to fill up that framework.

Make some flying devil oil using the hottest dried peppers you have and olive oil. This powerful brew can chase away any demons. So, dress a candle with flying devil oil and have it banish your debts. Let the hows take care of themselves. Burn a debt-reducing candle on your prosperity altar once a week, but don’t over-do it; a tea light will suffice. Then make smart moves: cancel that gym membership, call to consolidate debts, make payment plans.

Give things some time. Some powerful magicians can conjure thousands in the space of a week. I don’t think any of us are at that level yet.

I will say one important thing about money. It likes to be shared. It is a spirit, it wants to be active and move. If you fill up your money space in your life, then it’s filled up and nothing else will come in. If you are a generous person, if you give where you can, you will see a powerful magic work in your life. This isn’t like, new age mumbo jumbo! This is a widely accepted tenet of money magic. As you give, you will receive. There just needs to be balance.

Set up a prosperity altar. Unblock yourself from anything hindering you from making money. Banish debts, call in money. Use your altar to manage your prosperity. Have one or two really solid, powerful, money-drawing talisman jars. Then cast candle spells or other short-term money spells weekly. Meditate on the state of your finances and have a financial plan. Put energy and focus in to your finances and things will improve.

Lastly I’d like to talk about working directly with money spirits. One way you can improve your prosperity is to pay honor to the spirits around you in your everyday life. Imagine you are casting all these money spells and spirits in your home and around you take notice. Well, if you’re not friends with them, they aren’t going to help. But if you’re a buddy, if you give regular offerings, and if you treat spirits with respect they are more than likely to help deliver prosperity unto you. However, there are specific money spirits you can call and work with in order to go to the ‘next level’ with magic. For this I recommend the Modern Goetic Grimoire by Rufus Opus, who has a ritual for working with Bune, a generous demon who helps people with money and finances.

warm blizzard

Part II of the Voltron Family AU inspired by @lordzuuko‘s lovely fanart.

[Read Part I and Part II on AO3]

They are already standing in line at the register when Keith sees her, just a little way ahead of them. He isn’t even sure why he recognizes her because the years have not exactly been kind to her, but when she angles her head to smile at the cashier, Keith is struck with the empty realization that this random woman on this random day is one of his former foster mothers. 


They are watching pokemon re-runs, all of them cuddled up in the living-room. It’s a day like any other and that means it’s perfect.

“What’s your favorite pokemon?” Lance asks into the ending credits, sprawling across Shiro’s lap.

Shiro pretends to think for a moment before he answers. “I’ll have to go with Pikachu on that one.”

“You’re just saying that because you can’t think of any others!” Lance pouts, even as Shiro reaches out a hand and wipes the frown off his face.

“Nope,” Shiro grins, “Pikachu just kind of reminds me of Keith when I first met him.”

“Hey!” Keith complains from the other end of the couch because he knows exactly what Shiro is thinking.

“My favorite is Magnemite!” Pidge announces to the surprise of absolutely no one.

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I gave the car to my wife.

(warning: long story)

THE HAPPY:
Years ago, I used to be married to She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named-(In-My-Family). For the purposes of brevity, we shall call her Alice.

Somewhat significant age gap when we got married: I was 27 and Alice was 19 at the time. We had our share of ups and downs, and during one particularly hard time about a year after we got married, we were sunk in credit card debt and had to move in with her mother, who had a whole bunch of chronic medical problems and no insurance. Stepdad is a shadetree mechanic (who was not bad at it, actually), but couldn’t get regular work because he had medical problems all his own. Move in, cut some costs, help family. It’s the right thing to do, right?

Problem was, Alice and I couldn’t seem to both hold jobs at the same time. She would get laid off a week before I would start a new job, and vice-versa. After about 9 months of this, I was like, fuck it, Imma get ALL the jobs.

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Andre Lyon’s Top 10 Financial Tips.

You’ll want to write these down!

Even if you’re not on the verge of becoming a billionaire like hip-hop impresario Lucious Lyon, chances are you can still benefit from improving your personal finances. We sat down with Empire Entertainment CFO Andre Lyon and asked for his top ten financial tips for the average person. You’ll want to write these down and keep them close by!

1. MAKE A BUDGET
This is your first step. Take it seriously. Budget realistically so you can see where all your money’s going month-to-month. You can’t map out a financial strategy unless you know where you’re starting. This will also help wean you off the bad habit of spending money before you get it.

2. PLAY THE LONG GAME
Like the saying goes, “All the glitters is not gold.” I can’t tell you how many new artists I’ve seen get signed to Empire, only to blow through their signing bonus buying fancy cars and clothes, trying to create the impression that they’re living on the same level as my father, who’s sold millions of records. They end up spending themselves into a mountain of debt. So even if you’re not a singer or rapper who’s signed your first contract, take my advice: slow your roll. Don’t let money burn a hole in your pocket. Keep your eye on your long-term goals.

3. SAVE, SAVE, SAVE!
This simply can’t be stressed enough. A lot of people are resistant to the idea of saving, but I always think of it as “paying yourself first.” Even if you’re already in the habit of paying all your bills and other debts as fast as you can, it’s time to change your mindset. In most cases, paying everyone else first will most likely leave you with very little money left to set aside, and you’ll continue living month-to-month with no way out.

4. CUT THE CARDS
Years ago, when my father first started making some good money from his record sales, he started getting bombarded with pre-approved credit cards. And I don’t think it’s telling tales out of school for me to say that he took full advantage of them…until I sat him down and showed him that he was just throwing money out the window in terms of interest payments. So I’ll tell you like I told him: figure out which two – yes, only two – credits cards you truly need to live on. Cut the rest in half. Ironically, the more income you make, the more those pre-approved cards will keep showing up, but you don’t have to accept them. Steer clear of the trap.

5. LIVE UNDER YOUR MEANS
You often hear people say, “live within your means.” I disagree. For the average person, living within your means gives you very little wiggle room in case of emergencies. So you should be living as far below your means as reasonably possible. Saving a good portion of your income is critical to long-term financial health.

6. GET ORGANIZED
Balance your checkbook. Put all your monthly bills in one place and pick a specific day out of the month to sit down and pay them. Create a filing system for your bank statements tax returns, and other financial paperwork. These small steps might seem like a waste of time, but once you get into the habit of doing them, you’ll find that they actually save you money. No more overdraft fees or interest charges on late credit card payments.

7. START INVESTING
Making people think they have to be millionaires in order to get into the investment game is one of the most effective tricks Wall Street has ever pulled. But that’s jut what it is: a trick. Anyone can invest, and it doesn’t require a huge amount of disposable income. You’ll have to take some time to do your research on this one, but trust me, this is where you want to start directing your energy. A simple savings account is nice, and easy for everyone to wrap their minds around, but they yield pretty much no return at all. If you want to start building a legacy – or even just a comfortable retirement nest egg – investing is the way to go.

8. KEEP A MONEY JOURNAL
If you’ve ever gone on a diet and had to keep a food journal, where you write down everything you eat or drink each day, then you’re already familiar with this practice. A “money journal” is just like it sounds: a written list of everything you spend on a daily basis, be it cash, check, or charge. If you do this for just four weeks, I guarantee that certain spending patterns will emerge, and you’ll be able to step back and take note of just how much money you’re devoting to things like lattes, movies, and snacks throughout the day. It all adds up pretty fast.

9. DREAM BIG
It’s okay to have big dreams. We all do. That’s exactly how Empire started out: my mother and father’s dream. A lot of people think my only job at the company is running around and stopping different departments from spending too much money. And yes, that’s part of it, but the reality is, sometimes you have to take big steps if you’re going to grow. So if you’re fantasizing about owning a big house or traveling around the world someday, let that motivate you. Just stay focused on your goal every single day.

10. NEITHER A BORROWER OR A LENDER BE
William Shakespeare said it best: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be, for loan oft loses itself and friend.” Now, this doesn’t mean you should never help anyone in need (nor should you be too proud to ask for help if you really need it), but it’s a situation you should strive to avoid. It’s usually a no-win situation for everybody involved.

I Hate You (Part 21)

Ryan Sitkowski x reader

Warnings: Language



“Do you think she wants me to match her dress or something?” Ryan asks nervously, watching as Devin thoroughly went through his closet, discarding most of his clothes onto the bed, wrinkling his nose at a few and actually tossing them towards the waste basket. “Cuz, like, I don’t even own a tie —.”

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Fics I desperately want for DA2 that better exist already  that I’ve come up with over the course of playing this game
  • Bethany has never wanted to date any of the men she knows. Then she meets Isabela and promptly realizes that’s because she’s a lesbian.

  • Anders helps rescue Nathaniel from the Deep Roads and refuses to let him leave his company without getting utterly piss drunk together at the Hanged Man, which is the sort of evening that starts out fun and ends with two men staring blearily into their mugs as they talk about the Warden, the finest damn woman they ever knew
    • and Hawke is like, you know the hero of Ferelden
    • Anders: yeah
    • Hawke: the hero of Ferelden
    • Anders: yup. she made me a grey warden herself
    • Hawke: *takes a deep breath*
    • Hawke: WHAT IS SHE LIKE OH MY GOD YOU KNOW HER WOW OKAY THAT’S JUST WOW CAN YOU GET ME HER AUTOGRAPH TELL ME EVERYTHING 
    • Anders: she’s short and likes fighting, please let go of my arm, I can’t feel my hand anymore 

  • When Isabela finds out Bethany is a virgin, she whisks the poor girl on a whirlwind tour of the city, trying to help her find just the right person to usher her magnificently into the world of sex. Bethany resists all of Isabela’s suggested partners. “I don’t like them!” she argues, and Isabela is like, “You’re not supposed to like them, you’re supposed to be madly attracted to them and then leave them forever in the morning. No muss–well, some muss if you’re doing it right–but certainly no fuss.”
    • Bethany remains staunchly unconvinced, even as Isabela whips out what she views as her trump card argument:
      • feelings are such a complication
      • feelings are just like another thing on top of sex, and wouldn’t that skew Bethany’s perception of sex? 
      • because Bethany’s never been in love
      • so if she waits to have sex with someone she loves
        • which is a ridiculous concept btw 
        • how would Bethany know what she was feeling was sex, and what was love?
    • “And never,” Isabela says firmly, “ever, ever tumble someone who loves you, especially when you don’t love them.”
      • “Why?”
      • “Because you’re a sweet girl. And that’s how sweet girls spend their lives married to shitty men they feel sorry for.”
  • Bethany is Isabela’s favorite pastime at the moment. That’s what she tells herself to rationalize why she’s so distraught that the girl’s been hauled off to the Circle. And that’s why she resolves to promptly break in. Bethany may have just lost her freedom and everything she’s ever known in one fell swoop, but if Isabela has her way, she’ll take from Bethany something she’ll at least be glad to give.
    • Or: “You broke into the Gallows to deflower me?” Bethany asks.
    • “I know,” Isabela responds. “It’s very dashing of me.”
      • (feelings are such a complication) 

  • Aveline is very happy dating her guardsman
    • she’s very very happy. 
    • she thinks it’s only right to pass that happiness on to the person who helped her find her own
    • and that is how Hawke finds herself the victim of a matchmaking scheme that is equal parts:
      • 1) relentless, and 
      • 2) incompetent. 
  • Not sure who Hawke is actually interested in, Aveline goes down the list:
    • Merrill
    • Anders
    • Fenris
    • Isabela
      • that last one is the definition of last ditch desperation 
  •  It Does Not Work
    • in fact it goes wrong in such an astonishingly stupendous way that Varric ends up doing waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more than his usual amount of damage control
      • alongside Hawke
      • who tells him how much she appreciates everything that he does for them
      • Varric says he appreciates her appreciating him
      • but he’s happy to do it
      • still, says Hawke 
      • and they smile at each other
      • in a new kind of way
  • And Aveline is like, all according to plan
    • ((she’s absolutely lying but she’s still taking credit)) 

  • Leandra dies, and it’s horrible. No child should be alone after losing a parent in such a way. And the Hawke sisters shouldn’t have to grieve separately.
    • Or the story of the biggest bummer of a jailbreak of Bethany by everyone except Hawke, who is about to be very surprised in her mansion
    •  (Hawke who also thinks that all of her friends have abandoned her in this moment of need because they are all secretly performing said jailbreak)
      • It’s the classic conundrum of surprise parties
      • but like
      • a bit more of a bummer than usual 

  • Oghren turns up at the Hanged Man one day. Then he never leaves. 
    • “Look, he fought alongside the Hero of Ferelden too,” Anders tells Hawke. “Why don’t you go accost him?”
    • and Hawke is like, 
      • “Astonishingly
      • I prefer to talk to the Grey Warden who is less likely to light his fart on fire mid conversation”
    • and Anders is like,
      • “fair” 

  • Someone gives Hawke a nice massage
    • she has a nice afternoon
    • her friends got her a trip to the spa
    • everyone is going to the spa 
    • god their lives are so stressful
    • where is my spa fic 

  • Varric handles things for his friends. It’s what he does. And sometimes it’s easier to handle things on his own if he’s got a little proof that he can act on their behalf. Proof like, say, a marriage certificate. It’s actually very easy in Kirkwall to be married to multiple people if you know all the right clerks to file all the right paperwork in all the wrong places.
    • Or, how Varric marriage of convenienced literally all of his friends over the years 
    • except Isabela
    • who never had a problem solvable only by marriage
      • “Not unless you’re offering a good ship as a dowry”
      • Varric is not
  • but she marries Varric anyway on the grounds that if anyone deserves this paragon of manliness, it’s her
    • there’s a very dramatic wedding at The Hanged Man
    • Merrill is the flower girl
    • Fenris is the maid of honor who’s gonna be sleeping with the bride after the ceremony 
      • (Isabela conveys this during the ceremony)
    • Hawke in her role as best man fake cries and then, a few beers later, really cries
    • Anders officiates
      • he is in no way qualified to do this but they reason he has a robe so that’s good enough 
  • “This is a much better wedding than yours is gonna be,” Isabela tells Aveline
    • who scowls fiercely and buys the pirate another round anyway because it’s her turn
    • and then Isabela gives Aveline a wedding gift 
    • and as Aveline is about to point out that wedding gifts aren’t gifts you give away at your own wedding
    • she looks down
    • and sees divorce papers
    • divorcing her from Varric
    • so she can legally marry Donnic
    • and Aveline goes
      • wait
      • when the fuck did I marry Varric
  • and that’s the story of how Aveline nearly arrested Varric for illicit polygamy at his seventh wedding 

  • Hawke purchases back her family estate. The first thing she does is organize a sleepover.
    • attendance is mandatory
      • that means you, Fenris

  • Excerpts from the six year running card game between the group where they have: played for money, played for fun, played for the money owed from the last time they played for money, played for favors, played for money which is then offered as relief from the favors they had to give away last game (Hawke keeps cashing in her favors to get people to come to Sundermount with her, all of Isabela’s dares involve public nudity, and Anders makes people volunteer at his clinic: it’s worth just paying up to never have to do any of those things again), playing for pride, playing to solve debates, playing to soothe the tempers roused by the debates, played with stripping (“Oi, get a room at the Rose for that,” snaps a waitress as she goes by), played to reverse stripping (“Full house,” Aveline says, laying out her cards. “Varric, for once, button your shirt up.”) and mostly played because they are friends, despite what it looks like, and because they have each other, despite the odds, and anyway they just need another round and they’ll win back that coin they lost five years ago, come on, guys, just one more round
    • somehow they are all in staggering debt to each other
    • “guys,” Hawke says one night, “the debt is friendship” 
    • and Isabela is like, oh my god, no it’s not, pay me the damn money
    • f r i e n d s h i p 

I’d like to revisit a twitterfic I wrote back in May about Moderately Well Off Businessman Derek Hale, who walks by the same set of panhandlers every day because he always gets focused on the stresses of his job and forgets to try a different route. 

He’s had a soft heart since he was a kid; he always rescued wounded baby animals in the forest and tried to patch them up, much to his mother’s dismay. So he can’t say NO when the lady on the corner tells him she can’t feed her twelve children and the man next to her hears the exchange, sees Derek pulling out cash, and counters with his fifteen children. It seems like a lot, but Derek came from a pretty big family - all the dozen plus kids constantly running around the Hale property might not have been his mom’s, but they were related to him and a part of his childhood that he misses.

That nostalgia - it’s lonely in the city, so far away from the Hale House in woodsy Beacon Hills - leads him to pull more bills out of his wallet, asking the kids’ names and listening politely to the man’s stories. It also leads to others in the area catching wind of his generosity and taking advantage of it. Some are much younger, so they don’t have kids of their own, but they inevitably have ailing parents or grandparents or aunts, or younger siblings back home who can’t even afford to eat cereal. The mere thought of that twists something up inside of Derek, and he passes over an extra few bills and tells them to buy something sugary and fun, too, like Lucky Charms. 

Time passes, and all these devoted, destitute families are steadily draining his pocketbook. To be entirely honest, Derek’s starting to get a little antsy about it, but he can’t stop now…not when they all rely on him, and gosh, he doesn’t lead a terribly lavish life, so he doesn’t really need all this money. It’s what he keeps telling himself every time he hesitates while reaching into his battered old bag, which Laura had given him when he’d moved to the city. “For all your important papers,” she’d said, looking as teary-eyed as his mom, which had made him feel awkward and sad until she’d punched him on the shoulder and everything shifted back to normal.

He talks to her, still; he talks to all his family, and sometimes he wonders why he’s staying here, earning a paycheck he doesn’t care that much about. He doesn’t talk about that during the calls, though, or about the emptiness he has to tamp down each time he hangs up. He’s got a decent life, as things go, and he sees his family on holidays, and so what if he doesn’t really have time to date? He has other interests. There’s no reason for him to feel lonely. 

Enter Stiles.

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ok so i have seen ‘you want to stay away from credit cards’ in a few posts lately and all you youngin’s are about to benefit from my age and expertise (i am in the real estate/finance industry) bc i wish someone had told me this when i was a lot younger. credit cards are NOT BAD and are in fact VERY USEFUL FOR ESTABLISHING GOOD CREDIT, which is super important (read: required) if you want to:

  • buy a house at any time in the future
  • buy a car
  • take out any kind of loan with an interest rate that won’t slaughter you (with the exception of federal loans, which have fixed interest rates at the time of application nationwide and tend not to be based on an individual’s credit)
  • signing an extended agreement for cable/security systems/a handful of other services
  • your insurance rates will go way down
  • some leases will require it
  • lots of other stuff

it’s really important to establish your credit EARLY. here are some things that factor into your credit that you should think about:

  • what is your debt to income ratio (how much do you owe vs how much you make)
  • gross debt (total amount you owe)
  • how many hard credit score checks you’ve had (a ‘formal’ check is a ‘hard’ check. something like creditreport.com is not a formal check and is a ‘soft’ check. you can have as many of those as you want) (this is not a huge factor but it is a factor)
  • length of time since last new line of credit/debt (right after you take out a loan to buy a car, your credit score will go down a few points. making on-time payments will make it go up.)
  • total number of on-time payments***
  • number of lines of credit*** (each source of debt is one)
  • duration of credit history***

***these three are not only HUGE parts of your credit history, they are the ones that are SUPER EASY to control, and the reason why you should not be afraid of credit cards.

esp for people who go to university, you’ll start to get credit card offers in the mail about when you start turning 18, saying you’ve been pre-approved for a card. find one with the following characteristics and apply for it:

  • no annual fee (you don’t actually have to Pay to own the card)
  • 0% interest rate the first year is p typical and doesn’t really matter
  • some kind of rewards like percent cash back or miles or whatever
  • read the fine print for some kind of language that says that the card will not start charging interest if the last bill was paid in full. THIS IS SUPER IMPORTANT bc what it means is that as long as you pay off the credit card on time, you will not owe any interest. because of this, as long as you pay off the bill as soon as it’s due, you’ll never generate debt from the card

take this card and use it for small, routine purchases. do you go out to eat a lot and usually pay with cash? that student loan payment you have that you usually just take right out of your bank account? a new pair of shoes that you’ve saved up enough money for? pay with your credit card, then pay off the bill right away. make sure not to buy anything that you can’t pay with cash Right Now, and always pay your bills on time. in as little as a year, you can get a credit score in the 700s, which will get you the best interest rates, p much sails you past any loan officer checks when you want to take a loan, and plus you can brag about having kickass credit when most people don’t have any.

while i’m at it, there’s a cool app called mint that helps you manage your money. it’s never too early.

a small disclaimer that you should definitely talk to someone you trust re: money issues because while i am in the industry i’m definitely speaking as general advice and not specific to any one person. also this is USA specific. sorry everyone else, i don’t pretend to know how your financial systems work.

anonymous asked:

It may be none of my business but how do you afford to go on a road trip for 8 months. Seriously I mean even with a good job, With all these expenses I'd have to save for years before I can even think about doing something like that. So how do you do it??? You say you save up to travel but you've been traveling a lot and you still have bills at home so how do you mange to pay your bills and still save enough money to travel so often. Not even people with big salaries can do that.

Good question! Get ready for a long answer. lol. :) First off, I want to clarify a couple of things. 1. Most of the trips I go on are for work. The other two big trips Ryan and I go on a year are funded by us saving all year, looking for deals, and researching. 2. I am going on this road trip as part of Trades of Hope’s national tour, meaning I will be working remotely and speaking at 31 different locations. So this is for work and is not just a ‘fun’ trip (though it will be so fun!). Working remotely and being paid while traveling can be a great way to make money and have fun experiences too. Who says they have to be two separate things?

Okay! On to the other stuff. :) Honestly, it has really surprised me how inexpensive it can be to travel. It is all about your values and where you put your money on a daily basis. Social media and instagram paint this picture that travel has to be expensive….and truly it does not have to be. 

You can make $25,000 a year (an income that is considered small for two people in modern America) and afford to comfortably travel the country for 8 months. The only hard catch to it is that you just have to find ways to make money on the road, which I am blessed to be able to do.

To travel a lot even while living at home, Ryan and I have made choices that lead to the things we love. For instance, we don’t have any car payments, I don’t have credit card debt, and I don’t spend my money on things I feel don’t get me toward my permanent goal. So I do not spend money on nor do I personally value cars, extra clothes, cable tv, overly expensive phone bills, eating out, a great apartment, or expensive accessories. I skip out on things like cable, I shop at goodwill, I drive a beat up old car (darn those brakes), I choose not to drive my car very often to save gas, I could afford a much bigger apartment and yet I choose to live in a very small apartment. These are things I am willing to compromise on in order to allow my larger goal to be travel and experiences. Put your money only where your values are.

Some simple figures:

Our apartment is $300 less a month than the average apartment in Jacksonville. That is $3600 a year. You’ve got a pretty good chunk of money there you can use for an international trip…and we used that to go to Spain.

Cable is about $100 a month. That is $1200 for a year. That is another really great chunk of money that you could use for an in-country trip…and we used ours to go toward our Washington trip. (We also find ways to save even when we travel too, such as staying with friends, camping out instead of staying in hotels, buying plane tickets at cheap times of the year.)

Let’s use your phone bill as another example. You can get unlimited talk and text on a cheap phone for $25 a month, while many are spending $60-$80 on their phone with data (and the iphone cost too, of course). Ryan chooses to have a cheap phone and we use my phone for data, so he saves about $600 a year on that…..which can be used for various weekend trips, camping trips, and other fun experiences.

There are so many other awesome ways to save money….but you have to understand where your priorities are. What personally makes your life full? It is not bad if you find that you truly value a nice car or spending more money on clothes or going out to eat. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But you must pick a couple things you value or your money will be spread thin between too many things. 

Onto the U.S. trip we are taking. With $25,000 a year for two, one could afford all of the expenses needed to go on a roadtrip for 8 months without dipping into extra savings. Now… If you value having Anthropologie clothing and living in the swankiest RV and having cable tv and staying at wealthy RV resorts, you may not be able to go on a 8 month road trip. But if you value the road trip and can cut costs other places, than you can make it work. 

It does takes a job that can be done remotely…but that is the only catch.  (start a photography business. 13 wedding shoots year with no other extra shoots and at the average cost of $2000 a wedding would get you to $25,000. Or you could start a website design company, a graphic design job, or maybe even get someone to train you on how to create apps! Or do a combination of some.) And if you don’t have that kind of job or want it, then just save in other places and take a couple trips a year instead. For me personally, I am not looking to live a fancy lifestyle or have a lot of money……that does not interest me……I am looking for experiences that add value and fullness and relationship to my life. And on an average (and even relatively small) income, I can do that. :)

I recommend reading ‘The Four Hour Work Week.” It’s a great book that give so much advice for how to set priorities, have amazing experiences off of little money, and set your life up so you can work remotely and have the freedom that comes with it. I assure you, it is possible. It takes some research and some re-distributing of the finances in your life, but it can be done! :)

Hope that helps! <3

*Nothing in the above post is meant to offend or come off as arrogant, but I have learned so much in the past few years about this and I really desire to help other people my age make choices that lead to freedom and amazing experiences. I really just want to help. <3 

4

COMMISSIONS POST!

In case my handwriting is super illegible (it is), my price guide is as follows:

SKETCH

  • Head - $10
  • Half Body - $20
  • Full Body - $30

COLOR

  • 1 Character, Full Body - $45
  • No BG/One color BG - Free
  • Simple BG (as seen in Garnet and Anthro OC pieces) - +$5
  • Semi-detailed BG (as seen in Mabel/Bill Cipher piece) - +$30
  • Full BG (as seen in mermaid piece) - +$50
  • +1 Additional Character - +$15 each

(no other sizes besides full body available in color at this time, sorry)

TO CLAIM A COMMISSION SLOT:

PLEASE DO NOT SEND ME A TUMBLR MESSAGE OR ASK! I try to check messages as often as I can, but we all know how much the message system on here can be flawed at times.
Email me at coryoungart@gmail.com with the subject line “COMMISSION: [First and Last Name of the name that will APPEAR ON THE PAYPAL STATEMENT] [(Preferred name in parentheses if you have one)]”
In the body of the email, include your name, the best way you can be reached, state which of the above list you will be commissioning for, then describe what you want in the commission as well as any special requests. (e.g. write “Happy birthday, Sarah!”, etc)
I will send you a confirmation email with the full price that you will be charged. Once you have confirmed that you accept the charge, I will send you an invoice. As soon as the invoice is paid, I will start your commission!

I only accept Paypal and Venmo as forms of payment at this time, sorry!

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Between Heaven & Hell: Part 10

Fic Update!

Summary: A Hook/Emma angel and demon AU, she is the light and he is the darkness, they can’t be together but can’t stay away from each other. Can a demon be saved, or will the angel fall from grace?

(A note about this chapter, I posted a sneak peak a few days ago that doesn’t actually appear yet. That scene got pushed into the next chapter due to the length of this one)

Read this chapter on ff.net

Read this chapter on AO3

                                                Part Ten

The man was slumped down in his seat, fidgeting and not meeting the boss’s eyes. His tailored suit was obviously expensive but it was a wrinkled mess and his shirt collar hung open, the white fabric stained dark with the sweat that also beaded on his forehead and plastered his thinning hair to his head. He reeked of BO, booze and stale cigarette smoke and Will tried not to let his nose wrinkle in disgust when he caught a whiff of the rank stench. The man was a customer of the Jolly Roger and he’d been on a hell of a bender, showing up right when the club opened three nights in a row and not leaving until dawn the next day but by the looks of things - the party was about to come to an end.

Mr. Jones sat behind his desk, as cool as a cucumber while he ignored the squirming customer and focused on whatever he was looking at on his computer. Finally, he reached for the stack of credit and debit cards sitting on his desk and started dealing them out in front of him like a hand of poker.

“Rejected. Maxed out. Rejected, rejected, you reported this one stolen, maxed out.”

The last card was dropped on the desk and the boss leaned back in his chair, giving the customer a hard look that Will was surprised didn’t make him piss himself right there and then.

“Mr. Preston,” the boss continued, “you have racked up a considerable bill in my establishment that you clearly are incapable of paying. Bottle service. Cuban cigars. So much cocaine that it’s a wonder your nose hasn’t fallen off yet. Lap dances. Group lap dances. Private shows, you really like to watch, don’t you? Did you think all that was free? That the girls were fawning over you because they actually liked you? Everything you ordered on and off the menu had a price.”

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More Random Life Advice (or I kinda feel like there are too many bull shit messages being sent out to the general public)

Under the cut in case you want to scroll past. These are some hard learned lessons from my first two years as an adult.

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