That was an excellent cautionary explanation to a prospect

I would like to be able to use that on my blog a little later on, if I may, as an excellent example of realities vs. hype & myth in MLM.
Anybody truly wanting to run a profitable business SHOULD be constantly tweaking, adjusting, and looking at things with a critical eye.
There is no road to success that you simply follow, and anyone that tells you otherwise is either lying or stupid.
It really is that simple.

One big thing is to not pay for training

You’ll hear all this stuff about how it’s so much better than real or mainstream businesses, but in a mainstream business if they hire you and you need training, they pay for it. This isn’t true in MLMs and many of the people in them who do well make most of their money from training materials. One clue to this is if you say you don’t need them or don’t need the conventions, and they start to freeze you out, then you know their goal isn’t to get you to sell product, but to get you to spend money on training because that’s where THEY make money.

One other point: After you’ve been in and trying to recruit for a while, look at how many people decide they don’t want to join. Then compare that to what they say to expect. Nobody wants to be in, but the company keeps telling you it’s a great opportunity. If it’s that great, then why aren’t you at the top so quickly? Hint: It’s not because you’re not working hard enough. If so many prospects turn you down, it’s because people don’t like the product. If that’s so and most people turn you down, why should you expect it to be different for others?

If it is as great an opportunity as they say, then watch how many people come in and leave after a while. Find out how long people have been in and how well they’re doing. Get an idea of how many people are rocketing up to the top of the sales chart in the time they say. Don’t take their word, watch. Watch your group. How many people have been in for 5 years and aren’t up at the top yet? How many have been in as long as it’s supposed to take to “make it” and haven’t?

These people will tell you it’s because they don’t work hard enough, but don’t track what they say, track the figures. How long have they been in? How far up are they? How many people in your group have “made it” in the last year or five years?

And notice that if you start pointedly asking questions like that, your upline will try to change your point of view or give you a cheerleading speech that will make you think the numbers don’t matter — either that or they’ll scold you and make you feel like you don’t want or deserve success because you doubt.

And one last point: I’ve taught logic. I taught teenagers in treatment and one thing I did was teach them logic and logical fallacies so they could start learning how to reason logically and learn how to detect BS quickly. My ex-gf took me to a QS meeting and I was watching carefully what they said and found a number of logical fallacies in their presentation. (Every time I type that I want to type logical phallacies, which would not be inappropriate considering they’re used to screw people over.) Even with all that background AND with having researched the company ahead of time and knowing the issues, at the end they have a string of people come up and say things like, “I’m not working now because we don’t need the income from my job so I stay at home with the kids.” They cited point value and such, but not ONE ever mentioned actual income. In all cases, the wife was at home, but I never noticed one where both husband and wife were no longer working at their regular job.

Yet at the end of this it sounded so wonderful I was tempted to chuck my own business, which was paying the bills and, at that point, paying off the credit card debt, and join up. They put on that good a show.

You want to avoid being a statistic? Over 99.5% of people in an MLM lose money or don’t make any. It’s higher than that, but, again, when I am not sure of the exact figure, I round down to one I know is accurate. You have a better chance of winning if you go to Vegas and put it all into blackjack.

You don’t think you’re gullible, but that’s their strength and your weakness. They’ve been doing this for years and learned from decades of experience. They know what to tell you to keep you hooked. They know how to convince you they’re great and you need to stay with them.
They know how to convince you that you should spend all you have and max out your credit cards to keep going in their group. If you want to keep your money and not go in debt, get out now.

Actually, dumb to think it’s smart

If the money goes to his corporation, then to him, it’s his income and taxed accordingly. If it stays with the company, even if the company buys a watch with it, it is still corporate income, so the company still pays tax on it. If it’s a gift from the company, he has to declare it as income, so he still can’t get out of paying taxes on what the watch cost. If it’s not a gift but he gets the use of it, then there’s still issues with it.

In short, in one simple example he tries to prove how smart he is, but he essentially shows how little he actually knows about what he’s doing. This is the man that is writing the books everyone reads about how to get rich. This is one example, one I can easily remember. If you’re still not sure, then Google his name with the word scam or fraud and read a lot of the web sites that debunk him.

If you’re really interested in how things work monetarily, read “The Millionaire Next Door.” There are many millionaires around that people don’t even know are millionaires. I was at a small birthday party recently in surburbia and knew everyone there and had discussed money with most of them because I was on good terms with them and because most of us either had our own businesses or had other reasons to share what we had been learning or knew about money management. I realized that almost everyone in that forum was a millionaire, some were multimillionaires, and only one or two people in the room were likely not. Yet you’d never know it. Most people were driving “regular” cars. Only one or two were driving a Mercedes. The rest were driving cars like a Jetta, a Passat, Accords, and so on — cars that were definitely in the under $30,000 (and most under $25,000) market. They weren’t wearing big baubles or talking about taking off on a private jet to Cancun, or even hopping a flight for the weekend to Barbados.

Yet every one of them, in their forties and up, was either quite comfortably retired or could retire from anything they were doing at any point and still live comfortably for the rest of their lives.

While you’ll read this in order

this is the first thing I wrote in this reply because the name Kiyosaka is so well known. In short, and putting it politely, he’s full of bovine excrement. I have not read his actual books BUT I have read excerpts from them. (I just know some MLMer will take the first part of that statement and omit the rest of the context because he doesn’t have the courage to deal with the entire truth, but that’s just proof how they tell you what they want to without telling you the rest.)

Kiyosaka wrote books before “Rich Dad, Poor Dad,” but they were flops. In those books he thanks the important teachers in his life, but he NEVER, in any of those books before RD,PD, mentions the friend’s Father he says was such a strong influence on him and who was his best teacher. People have even gone back, looked up property records, and tracked down who lived in his neighborhood and no such man ever existed. So this man is starting his book with a lie: “There’s this man who taught me all this.” He’s playing into the archetype of having a wise mentor, which is a powerful image or icon in our culture. The problem is it’s wrong.

Big deal, right? If the stuff he says is true, then does it matter where it comes from? Deal with the material, not the source, right?
Okay — you should deal with the material, but this tells us from the start that the source has no compulsion about lying in print and continuing the lie after millions read his books.

As I write this, I’ll mention that I have my own small business that I’ve been running since 2008. It pays the bills and more. It’s paid for my antique Mercedes. It paid off over $23,000 worth of credit card debt in under a year — while I was saving up for the Mercedes. I know a bit about running a business and paying the bills. I’m also, suddenly, having to manage my Father’s estate since he died in Jan/2015 (along with my Mother and sister). It wasn’t a tiny amount. In that time, with the help of a forum of lawyers (as in not ONE lawyer, but a forum of lawyers) and a good accountant, I’ve learned a lot about money management and arrange things to minimize taxes. As I’ve said before in this forum, I’m not citing any of this to brag but to qualify myself as not just an idiot geek in his Mother’s basement pretending like he knows everything while he has no experience at all.

On to a quick point of one thing in his books. Just one point for an example: He talks about wanting a Rolex watch. He says he could buy it on his own, but then the money has to come in from his company to him and it’s taxed as income. Yet he’s a smart cookie, or so he says, so he has his COMPANY buy the watch and give it to him as a gift — or lets him use it, I forget which.

Smart, right?

It isn’t that the companies themselves are corrupt (although some are)

but that the people in them are corrupt and have learned how to twist the system for them to get rich at the expense of people in their downline who can’t afford to lose the money that’s being drained.

Nobody here is gullible, which is how the MLMs were able to work their magic. That you think you are not gullible is your biggest weakness.
They will give you reasons and logic for most everything they do and say. They have twisted reasoning that sounds good on the surface but isn’t true. For example, if you go to an open meeting by AW (I don’t use full names for my own reasons), the big daddy of all MLMs, they’ll say, “People will say this is a pyramid scheme, but it isn’t, and I’ll tell you why,” then they will go on to tell you why a legit company is a pyramid scheme. They’ll never answer the question of why isn’t AW a pyramid scheme. Instead they’ll redirect you to think about other companies and why they are or are not one. The question of if they are one goes unanswered. Yet it all sounds quite logical and only one person in 500 will realize they didn’t answer the true question.

Those who don’t think they are gullible will follow their answer and think it’s valid. One has to be more than not gullible. That’s just a passive state. One has to be active and actually be looking for logical fallacies and holes because these people have been running their sideshow snake oil sales for decades and the person giving you a pitch has learned from someone who has learned from generations of people successful at it. They know how to con people, especially those who think they can’t be conned.

Here’s a few things to ponder: One ad on one TV show reaches more people than a best selling novel or a top grossing movie by not just a few million but by a factor of 10 or more. (I can’t remember the numbers, I think it’s close to a factor of 100, but since I’m not sure, I’ll stick with what I know is true, however conservative the estimate may be.) It can literally reach, through one TV add, over ten million people in one shot.

Yet an MLM will say they can sell to more people through their structure. Do you still believe it?

They’ll say it costs less. Yes, it does, but on the other hand, you look at how many customers they have through the pyramid and how many they’d get from one ad on TV and the TV revenues will more than make up the difference, again by a factor of 10 or more. If they still say it’s too expensive, compare that to the figures they gave you when they said how much money the company made, what its yearly income is, and so on. How can they do so well and NOT afford an ad on TV? They could direct people to a website that gets their zip code and sends them to a rep in that area so the members could still make money.

Why do they prohibit advertising on TV? They say it’s to control distribution, but that’s not it. Think about it. I promise you, your MLM prohibits TV ads and likely retail sales even if you find a store that would carry it. There’s reasons for this and one is that they don’t care about how much money the product makes but how much they make on training.

Looking for some direction

hey,i am new here and to the MLM industry and my question is , Is the MLM industry as a whole, corrupt or is it just a few companies that are? i just recently enrolled in to a company and so far i have not experienced any of the things that alot of the people have experienced in this group,i’d like to think i am not gullible but i guess desperate times cause for desperate measures. If i could get some advice on how to brace myself for things to come it would be greatly appreciated.
How i became involved in this industry was through a book someone had given me ‘The business school’ by robert kiyosaki,i had read another book of his earlier in my life ‘Rich dad Poor dad’ and this person who gave me the book (obviously a network marketer) advised me to read it.I only read this book because it ws written by Robert Kiyosaki, but it certainly got my attention.
I dont want to be a statistic in this industry so if there are any tips to prevent me from any future headaches ,id rather find out now and stick to my Job.

I think ACN is an interesting example of MLM

because it’s thriving, and it manages one of the “cleanest” images out there. ACN has been going for 17 years in many countries. The products (services) are legitimate: small savings on re-sold telecomms. They’ve had charges laid against them by the Canadian and Australian governments, and beat the rap both times. They’re somehow able to claim that selling the product is every representative’s focus and therefore it’s not an illegal pyramid scheme. Whereas in reality, recruiting is all-important to any chance of making money. And all the pitfalls of MLM are evident.

I think you’ll find that there isn’t much difference between one MLM and another

Sure, there are aspects of every MLM that distinguish them, but the essential element of MLM is that recruiters recruit and get paid based on that recruiting and the sales (self-consumption or retailing) made by the recruits.

This forum has more than 11 members, coming out of companies that include Amway/Quixtar, Arbonne, Mary Kay, Melaleuca, Herbalife, Primerica, Agel, Ameriplan, Amsoil, Avon, Market America, Excel Communications, Ignite, Discovery Toys and several others. There are literally hundreds of MLM companies, and many more are founded every year. The vast majority of MLM survivors come out of an experience with Amway/Quixtar.

My point is that unless you can find a forum, online or terrestrial, that focuses on ACN as a scam, you’re not likely to find a person with first-hand experience for every MLM and every other type of scam out there. You have to take some general knowledge and learn to apply it to your particular situation.

One of the documents in our Files section is called “MLM Flavor Of The Month.” It is a point-by-point look at what makes each MLM work and how it can scam unsuspecting victims. I suggest you download and read it. It’s not particular to any company, but it discusses compensation plans and pyramids. Useful stuff.

And finally, my standard advice to anyone in your situation, watching friends or loved ones get sucked into these things:

They truly believe they have found something that answers needs in their lives. That’s how my wife and I felt after we had been involved for a few months. You will NEVER be able to dissuade them from their belief if you go in screaming about how it’s a scam and how it’s designed so that they’ll fail. They’ve been trained to counter those types of arguments. It starts on day-one and is EXTREMELY effective.

One of the techniques employed by MLM companies is

to coach new recruits on how to handle a long list of objections from non-believers(you!). What you encountered is just one of them. A standard procedure is to make comparisons to reputable companies and explain how the particular MLM is the same. As an illustration, here are some of the standard answers I got a while ago when an ex was in an MLM.

If you say its a pyramid scheme – they try to convince you that Microsoft, Google, US Govt etc are all pyramid schemes.

If you say 99% fail – They say that 90 % of all small businesses fail.

For healthcare MLMs, if you say some TV network did an expose on them, they will say that the TV networks are funded(advertising) by the large pharmaceutical companies and so have an agenda against MLMs.

If you point to websites, they will say the websites were created by people who failed at MLM and they will only listen to people who have succeeded (see recent posts by George Gonzalez!!).

And so on….

If you try to extend the argument using logic, they WILL get emotional on you, and accuse you of stealing their dreams and cut you off –

There are several posts in the last few weeks on dealing with this situation(by Hal and others) – specifically only by asking questions. There’s not a whole lot you can do for quite a while – just help pick them up when they fall eventually.

Good luck!

So what can you do?

Not a whole lot. But you CAN ask questions of them that require that they do some research. You’ll have to do some research of your own before you can do that, and for most MLMs, generic research on those pay plans (“Flavor Of The Month,” for example) will offer a good start.

If YOU try to convince them they’re wrong, they’ll dismiss you as not understanding or jealous of their newfound vehicle to success. If THEY discover unsettling issues with their involvement in it, THEY may find that they cannot continue in this business without more complete answers to their concerns.

In short, if you try to tell me I’m wrong, I can find reasons not to believe you. If *I* discover for myself that I’m wrong, I’m more likely to believe it.

I hope you’ll continue to read here, even if we do not come up with a member with ACN-specific experience for you. We can help and support you, even if it’s on a more generic basis.

Over the years we’ve gotten a number of letters from

convicts still serving time, asking if when they get out, they could intern with us. Self employment is often the only option these folks have because no one else will employ them. Judging by the number of letters we’ve received on this exact topic over time, there seems to be some kind of “getting ready for release” program where the inmates go over possible job options, then write letters out to folks who will take them under their wing and teach them what they need to know. It’s an uncomfortable position for us to be in because on the one hand, Christ teaches us to forgive, and by our society’s own rules those folks have already served the sentence which society meted out. On the other hand, as a potential employer (loans finance company) and woman who would be working directly with ExtLoans.Com on a day to day basis, the question of personal safety and employee integrity comes up front and center. Just to make things even more sporting, farm work is often the LAST thing that able-bodied people want to do. Long hours, difficult working conditions, low pay, and yea you’re going to be tired and dirty at the end of the day. Yet that is a pool of people ready, willing and often very able to do the grunt work. If we’re willing to give them that chance.

To date, we’ve never hired anyone, one way or the other. But if/when that time comes, I’ll have to decide if I want to give this particular “employee candidate pool” a try. It’s a hard call.

I’ve always got it on hand

just for that type of reason. I think the next time Honeyville runs a big discounted sale I’ll probably purchase it in #10 cans for long term storage in the basement. I have a couple of boxes upstairs for grabbing when I need just a tad right now. I just don’t cook with it on a daily basis any more because of the cost.

I’m SO far behind!

Down to about 1500 unread messages here… Did y’all miss me? 🙂 Anyway, I’ve been making my own yogurt for years. I bought a yogurt maker a very long time ago. It has 7 6-ounce jars. I broke one and had a devil of a time finding replacements that didn’t cost a fortune, finally got a case of 24 from U-Line, so now I have lots of them, nice to always have a set of 7 clean ones so I can make a batch before I use up the batch before it and get all the jars washed.

I use whole milk and I use “Greek Gods” brand plain, whole milk yogurt as my starter. Once I’ve taken some out of the container, the whey settles out and I just use the whey for my starter. A quart-size container costs about $4.00 at Walmart and it has several strains of live cultures in it. Stonybrook Farms also has several strains of cultures, but I don’t much like it, for some reason. I do, however, like the yogurt I make from either one just fine, so go figure.

I have had some success using yogurt from one batch as the starter for the next batch, but it makes me nervous. If bad bacteria get into it along the way, you could find yourself encouraging more and more of them to grow, so I prefer to use new yogurt each time and buy more when the old one passes its expiration.

I positively hate powdered milk. When I was a kid, we moved to the West Indies and there was only one local dairy so they charged a fortune for milk, and we drank a lot of powdered milk. As an adult, I decided to try unsecured personal loan again, and, yep, I still hate it. I know that some people add it to milk to make their yogurt thicker, but I’ll pass. I’ve also heard that making it into yogurt masks that taste, but I’m skeptical and not inclined to go through the trouble to make a batch I hate.

One thing that will make your yogurt thicker, though, is to heat the milk to 185 degrees, then cool it to below 118 degrees (hotter than that will kill the bacteria). Then you inoculate it with the culture and go on from there. That heating makes some kind of change in the protein structure and the end result is thicker yogurt. It also kills a lot of bacteria, but with pasteurized milk, that probably isn’t much of an issue.

I’ve heard cautions about adding anything but milk and culture (i.e., fruit or other flavorings) because some things like that may affect the ability of the bacteria to reproduce. The advice I’ve always heard is to add anything like that after you have the plain yogurt made.

Well I did it

Yesterday I decided to try making yogurt for the first time in my life. I chronicled about the day as I went, complete with photos (link below). I couldn’t believe how simple it was. I used my dehydrator to incubate it and am having a serving of fruit in the bottom orange marmalade yogurt for breakfast. Boy is it good! I purchased one gallon of whole milk and added 3 tablespoons of plain yogurt with active cultures for the starter. Out of that I got 19 half pints of yogurt.
Before incubating it I put about 2 teaspoons of jam/preserves/marmalade in the bottom of nine of the jars for the fruit in the bottom. Set the timer on the dehydrator and went to bed. Now I’m having delicious yogurt for breakfast!
I’ll turn some of the plain into Greek yogurt, and a bit into yogurt cheese starting later today.

Thank you for your response

I did find a couple of sites but everytime I mention them to anyone who’s into the ACN thing, they all say, “If you look up any company, you will find dirt on them”. It’s frustrating. I just feel bad that a lot of people I know are falling victim to this.
Does anyone have first hand information with ACN or have you ever been involved with them? Thank you again.

Thank goodness I am mother of the groom

and we TRIED to talk them into an April wedding when she tracked out ( she teaches in a year round school), but they wanted Valentine weekend… in her hometown…. In the past month she has been in the hospital with a blood clot in her lung from the new birth control, he was in the hospital cause his blood pressure tanked from low potassium levels caused by stress, Their honey moon is now on standby cause she has to work next sat. due to school make up days, and they are stranded in Raleigh because cars are at a gridlock….. If these two can get through this… they will be golden!

You see, there you go

LOL That is what you get for planning a February wedding! Didn’t you plan on record breaking winter weather!!!! LOL
Of course I am kidding. I know you, nor the wedding party, planned on it. But it is what it is and what else is there to do but wait it our? Really, I am wondering what else can be done. I am hoping y’all had wedding insurance.

Well, the bride and groom tried to leave for the wedding

and turned around after it took them 40 minutes to go a mile, brides dad is stuck in atl international until further notice… and we are expecting ice and power outages along with this snow and need to be in MD for the rehearsal dinner on Friday evening, The bride got her “travel” shot since her blood clot is still disolving and her doc won’t be in the office tomorrow so when I talked to my son and his future bride, she was in a puddle of tears and he was on a ti-raid that the news was wrong again about the amount of time they had before it hit…
Other then that, we are ready…..and my eyebrows are done 🙂

Hang in there Mark

We’ll all be sending you warm fuzzies. Hopefully enough of them will keep the worst of the ice off your particular power lines. I know how it feels to sit and wait out storms like this. Here’s hoping you come through it with minimal issues.

Still holding our own here

Sleet/ice/snow is all around, my power lines are covered and the roads aren’t safe to drive on. I pray the power doesn’t go off, in the house with a 2 month old baby is definitely something I’m not looking forward to. This is one time I miss having a fireplace. We are expected to experience more sleet/freezing rain throughout the day and night so this is just the beginning. Its not expected to get above freezing temperature wise until Friday.

That’s true and how DH and I felt

we both retired from county jobs and though the pay wasn’t great feel so thankful for the retirement we have. However…not the secure feeling there used to be, retirement benefits are cutting back and DH got a notice this week that a health supplement of several hundred dollars he gets every month will start to cut down, a little more each year. I was never eligible for it, started working when I was too old to hit the cut off but it has been very nice for him. Especially the newer employees are not nearly as well off with benefits. I was really fortunate in one way, we had a contract that got passed during my time there. It gave three percent of of your salary in retirement for every year you had worked if you were over sixty. That only stayed in for a short time, next round the employees voted it out for something they thought would be better but I got it and it was a big difference. His county didn’t have it but he got the golden handshake, something else I was not entitled to.
, that’s a bonus of five years seniority if the county is encouraging retirement and they can get some of the employees closer to retirement to leave early.

And of course, this provides FURTHER erosion to the tax base

How can someone of(or close to) retirement age find other employment quickly. Remember, the economy around here is ALREADY depressed, with able-bodied skilled workers having trouble finding jobs. So now there’s going to be a whole NEW group of people who can’t afford their mortgages, or maybe can’t even afford property taxed of paid off homes. So the city loses again. this place is going to end up a ghost town… 🙁

I have a friend who works for the water department

The way I understood it last week(or the week before), the current retirees were grandfathered in. But people who hadn’t retired yet might lose everything they put in. That prompted about 500 out of that 2000-person department to file their early retirement. The department’s GOAL was to get down to about 350 people total. Now I don’t know how those retirement plans work with the *bankruptcy*, though.

Interesting, yes it’s good, especially for those investing

Earnings from companies have been better than expected (they expected nothing), and many are expecting a good recovery, but most of the earnings increases have been from laying off people and cutting costs. They might be able to do it a few more quarters, but long term after we get tax increases (they have to come) and such I’m not so sure. The stock market to me seems to be anticipating earnings coming back to the 2006 levels, however at this point I’m not convinced, but I am in the stock market still, but watching for another bubble. I’m investing globally as well since I don’t think the US is the only place to keep money.

The question is why is the market anticipating a really good recovery. Maybe I’m a fool but I think this is more of the dollar losing 15% compared to other currencies in 7 month and the very cheap money that the Federal Reserve is putting in the system, rather than based on fundamentals like values of companies compared to earnings. To me I think focusing on earnings is key.

The federal reserve are trying to spur inflation in the midst of a time when credit is contracting, businesses are failing, and unemployment at an all time high, consumer retrenching. I think the stock market may continue going up until the federal reserve begins raising rates or another bubble bursts and brings it down.

Someone asked if anyone had a “special”

something they did to memorialize being debt free. I didn’t, but I just got a ZERO statement balance in the mail from the 1st cheetah we killed this month. Thanks to the question, I am going to keep it (and all the subsequent ones we pay off) and put them in our family scrapbook.
Holy cow. We are really on the road to being DEBT FREE.

Wow

My Home Depot balance (account has long been closed) was $669.40.

They just gave me a $314.40 DISCOUNT to pay it in full: $355.

Holy hannah !!

I took it. The payment is pending to February 28th since right now I have $215 in my checking account but we’ll be good by then, but holy heck. That was a HUGE discount.

That makes 3 cheetahs dead this month. We are halfway to being debt free except for the car.

It was nice for the kids to have the visual of cutting up the credit cards (yeah, I know DR says to do it as BS1, but it’s more of a teaching moment when they see it being paid off & cutting it up for nevermore.)

Update on the CC issue

Discover lowered my rate to 12.99% for 1 year and suspended my buying privileges which is absolutely fine with me. So I can make the min payment which will be reduced until I get to September and then I can go back to juggling and snowballing and paying extra where I can to bring that balance down.

CreditOne were not helpful – they said they don’t charge over the limit fees which I found doubtful so I have to go and do some digging through statements. Still, it’s a step in the right direction.

Capital One put me over the limit with the annual charge so they credited 50% back to me so that was positive. So I’m back on track with them.

Just got the pesky closed Chase card to deal with but that should be done even paying minimums by September. I’m still going to try to see if I can get them to reduce the % – can’t hurt to ask especially at this stage of the game.

I have a nibble on Fleur – depending upon what the puppy person is willing to pay, it may be what I need to move Fleur on if she doesn’t place in Texas.

Kiki is coming out of heat so Ben is not quite so demented – I’ve crated Shadow and Skundi for the interim until she’s out of standing heat completely, then I have to go through it with Libbye . Oh well, could be worse. They could stagger through heat every 2 months

Purchased hay costs went up again this last week

right on the heels of finally figuring out the land rental situation. For those who don’t remember, we normally put up our own hay but that didn’t happen in 2013 for a variety of reasons, amongst which was what I’ll politely call a breakdown in communication between DH and myself. We had a few nice days of not arguing about farm stuff, but then that hay price boost created another round of bickering. Very discouraged right now that DH and I will ever be on the same page in terms of how to run the farm and how to manage costs. So I’m back to looking for off-farm work again, for the fourth time in two years. Suffice to say I don’t have much good to say about the situation at the moment. But I did just finish a job application for a gardening writer. I’d appreciate some good luck sent our way that I get that job, or something like it.

Gandalf went to his new home on Sunday and Fleur

his sister, went with for some socialization and to see if Jessica could get her placed. I took a $800 hit on Gandalf which I can’t afford, really, but he’s off the feed bill. So it goes at times. I may also have a line on getting LooLoo placed which would reduce my pack stress at home a helluva lot. Shadow leaves sometime within the next 6 weeks and can’t happen fast enough to suit me.

Reducing my payments on the CC’s to clear one at a time is not working well so I’m back to the drawing board to figure out just how much I need to pay above the minimums to keep below the credit limit so I don’t get OL fees charged.

I am contemplating calling each cc company and telling them that if they want me to keep current I need to put a temporary plan in place of some kind until September 1st (caught up with the extra mortgage payment) that doesn’t generate over the limit fees if they want to get paid in full. I have been current all along but the extra I have to pay on the mortgage is taking a chunk I don’t have.

I’ve already cut down as much as I can on the cell phone bill and satellite. Satellite contract runs out in either June or July so that’s $60 a month right there I can save. And if I can figure out how to get a different receiver/DVR than the one I have, without having to pay for it, then I can drop the current bill by $25 + taxes. I did call DirecTV and they want basically $100 to do that by the time I account for the cost of the receiver and their shipping charge. That $100 4 months worth of charges which gets me to June anyway, so I think I may just call it a bust and get rid of it when the contract runs out.

I attended the Kerr Center Horticulture class last week and learned about Enterprise budgeting, so I need to apply that to each farm unit I have, I didn’t realize I could break it down by component, so that makes much more sense.

I’m not a math whizz so this is work for me, its not something I enjoy HOWEVER, I am keeping my eye firmly on the prize of being debt free.

I thought of you as soon as I got this

I think this one trumps anything else I’ve gotten lately, and it’s way more interesting than being told to show up for court in a different state. But tell you what – I’ll email this person back, give them every last scrap of personal information I have, collect all this money which is apparently coming to me, and I’ll split it with you. I certainly had no idea I was next of kin to a German property magnate. Gosh, maybe there’s a castle in the will somewhere. That would be pretty nifty. I’ve always wanted a castle.

I was on such a roll that I called the CC

with the largest balance to see if there was anything we could do to “get it out of collections”. It’s not overly past due (day 35) but all the late fees etc add up to a demand of $372 to “get it current.”
Yeah no. But I have until March 9 my next due date to keep it from getting worse lol. Unless I’d like to pay half today and half by the 9th.

Yeah, no thanks.

Now that they’ve demonstrated they are below the line mentality, I’ll probably just pay them enough on the account on the 9th to get it under the limit plus the late fee for the month so it doesn’t go back over (thereby charging me a late fee PLUS an overlooking fee).
They were pleasant about it, just, we don’t have to and we’re not going to.