Aug Goal Accountability

27 Aug

1.  run at least 1 mile 1st thing in the morning every day.

I just finished day #603.  Who knew I could defeat my laziness and become Ms. Fitt?!

3.  Collect a minimum of 2/mo positive moments in a jar

I think I did one.  I wanted to do another for the Brandi concert, but that week I was tired and stressed, and now it feels too far back.  Like, forced.  I need to make sure to do it AT the moment.

3a.  listing (in my head) what I’m thankful for daily.

Fair.  Sometimes.  Not enough.

3b.  I want to appreciate nature, love, and things I already have.

I really enjoy our hikes around Salt Lake City.  I often look around at the beauty of the mountains, and the salt flats.

3c.  Worrying can only take up a maximum of 15 minutes/day. EVERY day.

When I was offered a veterinary job, I did not stick to this.  And it reminds me not to base my decisions on fear.

4.  Dental health. Floss daily

I think I did this!

 

2015 Aspirations (in no particular order):

#1: Get the money. Make it, keep it.

I need to somehow change my job situation–without falling back on vet stuff.  After my trip, I can work on this a little more whole-heartedly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#4: Make a menu

I have been sort of doing this on my calender.

4a.  do a grocery list

This is always current, but I only want to spend EBT, so everything doesn’t always get purchased.

4b.  grocery shop 1x/wk

It’s maybe a little less because the food stamps don’t go that far.

4c.  cook 5 days of cooking per week grow it to all 7.

Fail.  Oh boy, major fail.

 

I want to keep up goals and these accountability blogs.  But I feel like I was ready to go on one track this year (in 2014) and ended up on a different one.  This is sort of a regrouping year, so the goals aren’t all that tangible.  It’s difficult to MAKE goals and keep them when fundamental things are changing.  I need to find the path I’m working toward before I can be accountable for anything.  And this time I don’t want to just rush into anything, yet I don’t want to fall into anything either.  I’m trying to be careful about where my next steps will take me.

As such, I’m not sure I’m going to keep these accountability posts up–just because the goals aren’t really there.  I’ll see.

 

Red Butte Gardens: Zoo-Tunes Reloaded [Brandi Carlile part 2]

24 Aug

I hated Zoo-Tunes.

I thought I would love it. I love the zoo, and am happy to support it. Seattle is a wonderful concert city. The weather is usually mild, and I enjoy the outdoors. And who doesn’t love a pic-nic? Especially AT a zoo, and with top-of-the-line musical entertainment.

And I knew what I was getting into.  I had researched the Zoo-Tunes ticket:  Members go for an outing, not the music.  People talk over the music.  People sneak in alcohol.  It’s lawn seating = crammed in.  But I had been ready for it.  I bought VIP tickets–I would not have to deal with pushy people, or taller chairs in front of me.  I paid my way out of the crowding, and probably the talkers too.  I was confident.

But that’s not how it went down.  Events in zoos are not for the music.  And even paying VIP prices didn’t buy me out of talkers.  People stood in front of me and weren’t told to sit.  It was fairly obnoxious, only being redeemed by the Indigo Girls’ showmanship–they know what they’re doing and can capture even an unruly audience’s attention.  By the end, even those who weren’t there for the music, and hadn’t heard of the Indigo Girls were captivated by the show.

Amy across the quad

Still, I’d never go back to Zoo-Tunes.  It’s annoying.

I knew Red Butte Gardens would be much the same.  And I was not going to camp in line.  I did not want to get there extremely early in hopes of securing a good seat.  I knew people would be drunk and talking.  I knew people would probably stand in front of me, blocking my view.

Thus, my expectations were low.

I drove to the venue several weeks ahead of time to find the route and scope out parking.  The lowest lot, farthest away from the venue, had an North exit.  everyone else would cram into the closer parking lots and leave by the Western exit.  I would rather trek up a hill in the beginning and walk back down, past all the slow drunk people blocking the roads on foot.  And past the snail-trail of drunk-drivers slowly leaving past police escorts.

Also, I was in no rush to get to that line.  I knew, even if we had gotten there at 8AM, and camped in the heat all day, that in the end the pushiest people will get the best seats.  And Cool and I are not those people.  I also knew from Zoo-Tunes experience, that even if you are lucky enough to make it to the front, the center, or an otherwise primo location–pushy people who come late will squeeze you out.  And you can’t belly-ache about it without looking like a super-douche.

Even though doors opened at 6PM, we strolled up to the line at 5:45PM.  Something old, pre-planning, overly-anxious me would never have done!

red butte gardens 4But as I expected, all the pushy people made it to the best lawn places.  I saw people coming in half hour after the opener started, when nearly everyone had their sport secured–making their way to the front center and squeezing in.  That’s just how it goes.  People will be late and pushy–there’s no fighting that.  And we got a good enough seat with a side view of the stage near the far right.  And it was fine.  And people weren’t severely crowding us.  And we were lucky not to be next to any really inconsiderate drunks.

We had our picnic, sitting on a Lion King blanket while enduring the opener.  Then, set-up for Brandi seemed to take forever, and I suspect they were intentionally waiting for dark to optimize their light show.  It seemed a long wait for the band to get up there.

But they opened with my favorite song from the new album, “Firewatcher’s Daughter.”

Brandi- Red Butte Gardens Aug 2015Brandi was sensitive to the crowd, as always, and really gave the feeling that she personally loved the venue and cared about each individual as fans.  She did the obligatory city-pandering saying she loves Salt Lake City, which I always find disingenuous (from ANY artist) but know is how you play the game.  Best of all, she was not tired or fatigued from the big show she WAS excited for-Red Rocks-just the night before.

I was happy they dug out some older tunes and didn’t just stick to the new album.  “The Story” is always amazing live and those Bear Creek selections are my personal favorites.

There were many references to “testify” “pray” “faith” and churcyy-themed stuff.  I’m not a big fan of that, and10857914_10153344619528936_124799587122048377_n I’m glad I’m not FROM Salt Lake City, because I guess that stuff comes with the territory here.  Literally.  You can’t escape the Mormon history or current LDS influence.

I had heard the live version of “Turpentine” on the symphony album, and she played it for us.  I have to say any talking on live albums is interesting for the first listen.  Maybe it’s funny for the first 3 listens through the CD.  After that it gets tedious and repetitive–you’ve heard that story before.  And even though I knew about the audience signing harmony–and was tired of hearing the set-up for it on the CD–in person it is spectacular.  You really feel a part of the band and the whole audience has this connected, magical feeling.  It was really cool to be a part of.  I’m glad she’s still trotting that out.

The night was nearly perfect.  Sure, the set-list had been done before.  Talk about gay marriage, talk about the darkness in the love song, all that hadn’t been the first run-through.  But though it was not fresh and innovative material, it still felt like the band’s truth.  And even rehearsed, that’s special to see played out.

I wish Brandi would play something more upbeat at the end and in the encore, but all 6(?) of her shows I attended would wind down.  I think it would be better if instead of starting on a high note and working her way downward to quiet songs, she did more like DMB and played one slow, and one fast encore song.  Because by the encore, I’m all jazzed up and wanting to end on an energetic one, not 3 slow sappy ones.

faces

But aside from those teeny observations, just the feeling of the night was as close to perfect as you could get.  It’s this intangible thing, separate from the seating, the setlist, or the talking.  I would go to a Brandi concert any time!

 

 

Brandi Carlile at Red Butte Garden [part 1]

17 Aug

I’ve seen her at the Knitting Factory in Spokane twice, and both times she was on the verge of outgrowing the venue. Overcrowding lessons my good time, but they did amazing at both shows. Also, the first year she started late and I had to leave early (I still loathe Forster-Friday for forcing that regretful choice on me) and the 2nd year the venue had to hand-write tickets, and drunk Spokomptonites nearly ruined the show with their debauchery.

I also saw Brandi and the twins play with the symphony at Benaroya (spelling?  IDK) Hall in Seattle. symphony dress Unfortunately, not the year I lived in Seattle.  I under much duress, I had to take vacation time from work, and drive the 6 hours over the pass one Thanksgiving break.  The show wasn’t until the end of the visit (Cool’s family) so we were tired, and I was very worried about missing an exam and work in the morning.  It had snowed uncharacteristically hard, and I didn’t want to get caught on the wrong side of the pass.  So by the time the show came around I was already tired, then worried.

Brandi with our sign 2

 

 

 

 

For my 4th and 5th Brandi shows, it was her opening for DMB at the Gorge.  So it was a great time, but not HER shows.  She played a bunch of covers, and it was windy as HEEEELLLL.  And apparently, all the greatest tricks were left for Saturday, when we had Friday and Sunday tickets.  And Cool was kinda of a pill that weekend.

But last night, in Salt Lake City, the band outdid themselves.  I was worried because our show was the day after Red Rocks, which Brandi was all jazzed up about (of course).  I thought our show–if it went on at all–would be like DMB post-Gorge.  Still good.  Still a concert.  But much less enthusiasm/energy after the peak of the tour.

Plus, Cool got her tickets from a 4th party, because the venue is very hard-core on scalping and makes ticket limits, and ID’s the ticket-holder to make sure the name matches the ticket purchaser name.  And we couldn’t hold the tickets until “an hour before the show.”  Naturally I figured we were getting scammed.  I knew we would never hold the tickets, and even if they were legit, we would not be let in.

I did not allow myself to get my hopes up, because I just knew our concert wouldn’t pan out.

But the day of the show, the tickets were e-mailed.  I was only slightly relieved.  We couldn’t print them.  Cool had to make an emergency run for ink.  Then, it wouldn’t print without BOTH color and black ink.  And still, our tickets probably weren’t legit–and we weren’t on the list as the original purchaser.

After 1.5 hours, Cool printed two tickets.

So I packed our bags and got dressed, and we went to the venue.  Next–the actual concert

I Thought This Was It

10 Aug

My whole life I wanted to be a veterinarian.  So when that didn’t pan out, after time and time again of putting fourth my best effort–I was lost.  I didn’t know what to do with my life or what backup career I would chase.

retirement from vet med 012

And it took a lot of soul-searching and research to find an acceptable alternative–I just didn’t WANT to do anything that wasn’t animal related.  But Audiology made the most sense.  Sure, I didn’t love it in the same way and wasn’t excited about it like I was for animal work.  But nothing came close.  And it did spark my interest.  And in Audiology I could help people like my dad.  And there were a lot of great things about the career:  A stable schedule, more 9-5PM healthcare, higher salary so I could fight only my undergrad degree costs.

So I went to Riverpoint for 2 years.  And worked my A$$ off.  I really earned that 4.0 and for once in my life, made working the 2nd priority, which 9 times out of 10, was HARD.  I thought the grades would carry me into the next step of the program this time.  I thought with that 4.0 GPA, no admissions would reject me again.

But grades weren’t all I had.  I still participated in the extra-curriculars, volunteered, did extra for my program, observed professionals on my own time.  I had good letters from people I worked to know.  I even traveled out-of-state for the interview.

health fair 2014

And I was 14th on the list.  For a class of 12.  So 2nd on the waiting list.  Wait-listed AGAIN.  And even though I knew from multiple experiences what that meant, and how much of a long shot the wait list is–there was a teeny bit of hope.

Not a lot, but enough that I didn’t make any non-reversible plans or huge life decisions.  But in 40 minutes with the close of business hours, the wait list is over.  I will not be joining the Audiology doctoral class in 10 days.  I feel sad.  Sad for wasting all that effort at Riverpoint–not to mention incurring even more student loan debt on an education I can’t use.  And I’m relieved.  Because 10 days to get ready for a rigorous program is not a lot.  I didn’t have a loan for tuition, didn’t know how to make rent when students aren’t allowed off campus jobs, didn’t have books or a parking permit, and forgot far too many concepts and details of my hearing courses.

But mainly I feel lost again.

I’m not sure where to start over.  I can’t really pay for more school after the big move, and I’ll probably never go back to a big university, because for me it just hasn’t been worth all the money.  But what about a technical program?  Community college?  A job?  And in what area?

So again I’m left with a lot of questions and no real direction.  All I know is something has to happen soon.

Textbooks: When to Get the Most Money Back

6 Aug

I tracked the sell-back prices for two different textbooks over a year.

Again, I used a random online textbook comparison company.  Many will work, I’m not sure it really matter, just as long as you don’t sell anything back on campus.  Nothing is worse than paying $132 for one textbook and getting back $6 (if you’re lucky) when the semester is over!  The site I used is:

http://www.campusbooks.com/

I wrote the date:  the highest sell-back price for book #1; then the highest sell-back price for book #2.  Mostly I tracked the highest and 2nd highest prices for each book, but I started that a little later.  I also noted when Amazon made an appearance because they often trump everyone else’s prices.

The first book is:

Treatment Resource Manual for Speech Language Pathology

ISBN:  1111319782

The second book is:

Survival Guide for the Beginning Speech-Language Clinician

ISBN10 = 0890799814

 

For the first book, the highest prices were late October to early November ($96.19) and in August ($90-ish).  The lowest buy-back prices were late March ($8.50!) and April when they dipped down into the $20 range.

For the second book, the highest prices were pretty much when Amazon entered the buy-back mix, which was January (as high as $54), August (about $43),  and opposite of book one, late March early April ($40-$43). Which shows that it varies by book a little bit.  The lowest prices for book one were again opposite of the previous book.  The worst time to sell back was in November of 2014 when they dropped to $20-ish and this last June when they were again in the twenty dollar range.  The 2015 drop could mean a new edition came out or a better book came out.  So it’s good to wait until the book companies are paying more, but not so long that your book becomes obsolete since they’re always writing new ones.

So sell-back prices are more complex then the purchase price, because the school time-lines aren’t driving the process as much.  It looks like in general, August is a good time to sell.  But you might want to check frequently for the best prices on your particular book or sell to people at your own school.

bear buddies

Here’s the data:

3/14/14: $60/$30;
5/14: $54/$30;
6/10: $86/37; $38.50
6/15: $57, $36.50
6/19: $55; $35
7/1: $84;$34
7/8/14: $84.10; $35.25
7/13: $84.10; $31.25
7/28: $81.30; $31.00
8/3, 8/4: $81.90; $36.75
8/5: $81.90; $35
8/7: $85.91; $35
8/10: $90.54; $36.50
8/11: $90.54; $37.13
8/12: $90.53; $37.25
8/13: $84.88; $37.75
8/14: $84.90; $37.90
8/15/14: $84.90; $41.93 (Amazon appeared), 2nd highest is $38.12
8/17″ $90.53 (Amazon appeared); $43.17 (Amazon), $42.44
8/19: $90.54 (Amazon), $84 (2nd most); $43.17 (Amazon), $42.44 (2nd best)
8/20: $90.53 (Amazon), $84 (2nd); $43.25, $43.17 (Amazon)
8/22: $90.53 (Amazon), $84 (2nd); $43.80, $43.78 (Amazon)
8/24: $89.53 (Amazon), $56.25 (2nd); $40.36 (Amazon), $36.68 (2nd best)
8/26: $89.53 (Amazon), 54.27 (2nd); $40.36 (Amazon), $33.25 (2nd)
8/28: $89.53 (Amazon), $57.50 (2nd); $33.14 (Amazon), $31.91 (2nd)
9/2: $83.06 (Amazon), $53.25 (2nd); $37.38 (Amazon), $34.50 (2nd)
9/4/14: $80.22 (Amazon), $55.13 (2nd); $37.80 (Amazon), $33.50 (2nd)
9/5: no more Amazon, $58.25, $22.07 (2nd); $38.16 (Amazon), $33.50 (2nd)
9/10: $83.06 (Amazon), $56.50 (2nd); $39.60 (Amazon), $33.50 (2nd)
9/14: $83.06 (Amazon), $56.50 (2nd); $35.40 (Amazon), $35.00 (2nd)
9/15: $83.06 (Amazon),$56.50 (2nd); $35.00, $34.73 (Amazon is 2nd)
9/18: $83.06 (Amazon), $56.50 (2nd); $37.00 (no Amazon)
9/21: $83.06 (Amazon), $52.41 (2nd); $35.00 (Amazon), $35.00 (2nd)
9/22: $83.06 (Amazon), $55.75 (2nd); $35.00, $33.00, $32.93 (Amazon 3rd)
9/25: $83.06 (Amazon), $55.76 (2nd); $35.00 (Amazon = 2nd)
9/28: $83.06 (Amazon), $59.25 (2nd); $35.00, no Amazon
10/1: $83.06 (Amazon), $59.25 (2nd); $35.00, $33.00 (2nd), $31.52 (Amazon)
10/4: $83.06 (Amazon), $54.75 (2nd); $35.00, $33.00 (2nd), $31.45 (Amazon)
10/8: $83.06 (Amazon), $54.75 (2nd); $33.25, $33.00 (2nd), $31.35 (Amazon)
10/12: $83.06 (Amazon), $53.00 (2nd); $31.14, $30.00 (2nd)
10/16: $84.95 (Amazon), $51.25 (2nd); $31.14, $22.50 (2nd)
10/20: $96.19 (Amazon), $41.50 (2nd); $31.14, $20.00 (2nd)
10/22: $96.19 (Amazon), $41.50 (2nd); $31.14, $21.25 (2nd)
10/25: $96.19 (Amazon), $41.50 (2nd); $31.14, $20.25 (2nd)
10/27: $96.19 (Amazon), $43.18 (2nd); $31.14, $21.25 (2nd)
10/30: $96.19 (Amazon), $41.50 (2nd); $31.14, $21.25 (2nd)
11/3: $96.19 (Amazon), $43.18 (2nd); $34.75, $20.50 (2nd)
11/5: $96.19 (Amazon), $45.75 (2nd); $26.13, $24.31 (2nd)
11/7/14: $96.19 (Amazon), $43.18 (2nd); $32.00, $28.50 (2nd)
11/9: $96.19 (Amazon), $46.50 (2nd); $33.00, $31.14 (2nd)
11/11: $96.19 (Amazon), $44.50 (2nd); $31.00, $24.32 (Amazon)
11/15: $96.19 (Amazon), $46.25 (2nd); $33.25, $31.25 (2nd)
11/17: $76.64 (Amazon), $46.25 (2nd); $33.00, $31.25 (2nd)
11/19: $77.64 (Amazon), $46.25 (2nd); $33.25, $31.25 (2nd)
11/22: $77.64 (Amazon), $43.18 (2nd); $27.81, $24.93 (2nd)
11/25: $81.14 (Amazon), $45.75 (2nd); $29.50, $27.86 (2nd)
11/27: $81.14 (Amazon), $45.75 (2nd); $29.50, $28.28 (2nd)
11/29: $81.14 (Amazon), $45.75 (2nd); $29.50, $28.62 (2nd)
12/1: $83.64 (Amazon), $45.75 (2nd); $30.00, $29.30 (Amazon)
12/3: $83.64 (Amazon), $46.25 (2nd); $31.25, $29.67 (Amazon)
12/5: $83.64 (Amazon), $46.25 (2nd); $29.49, (Amazon) $29.25
12/8: $87.14 (Amazon), $49.50 (2nd); $29.55 (Amazon), $29.50 (2nd)
12/10: $88.17 (Amazon), $47.25 (2nd); $32.50, $29.85 (Amazon)
12/11: $88.17 (Amazon), $49.25 (2nd); $32.25, $30.25
12/13: $88.17 (Amazon), $50.25 (2nd); $32.25, $30.25 (2nd)
12/15: $88.17 (Amazon), $50.25 (2nd); $32.00, $30.00 (2nd)
12/16: $88.17 (Amazon), $36.75 (2nd); $32.25, $30.00 (2nd)
12/18: $88.17 (Amazon), $39.00 (2nd); $31.45, $30.00 (2nd)
12/20: $88.17 (Amazon), $80.50 (2nd); $31.75, $29.75 (2nd)
12/22: $88.17 (Amazon), $80.50 (2nd); $31.50, $30.04 (2nd)
12/23: $80.75, $78.75 (2nd); $31.50, $30.30 (Amazon)
12/25: $86.50, $84.50 (2nd); $32.25, $30.28 (Amazon)
12/29: $86.25, $84.25 (2nd); $34.50, $34.20 (2nd)
12/31/14: $81.25, $76.13 (Amazon); $36.82, $34.80 (2nd)
1/2/15: $81.63 (Amazon), $45.50 (2nd); $39.00, $37.01
1/5: $45.50, $43.00 (2nd); $39.00, $38.00 (2nd)
1/7: $49.25, $46.00 (2nd); $38.00, $37.62 (Amazon)
1/9: $49.00, $44.55 (2nd); $38.10 (Amazon), $38.00 (2nd)
1/13: $58.75, $57.00 (2nd); $39.23 (Amazon), $38.00 (2nd)
1/15: $67.25, $63.00 (2nd); $41.00, $40.04 (Amazon)
1/17: $64.75, $62.75 (2nd); $40.00, $39.69 (Amazon)
1/20: $70.00, 68.25 (2nd); $38.00, $36.48 (Amazon)
1/22: $72.25, $70.25 (2nd); $38.00, $35.67 (Amazon)
1/23: $72.25, $70.25 (2nd); $38.00, $35.97 (Amazon)
1/26: $74.25, $58.81 (Amazon); $38.00, $35.23 (Amazon)
1/27: $74.50, $68.80 (2nd); $38.00, $37.25 (2nd)
1/29: $74.50, $70.54 (Amazon); $54.24 (Amazon), $38.00 (2nd)
1/31: $79.78 (Amazon), $74.75; $45.52 (Amazon), $40.00
2/2: $67.10, $29.75 (2nd); $45.82 (Amazon), $40.00
2//4: $34.53 (Amazon), $29.75 (2nd); $46.41 (Amazon), $40.00 (2nd)
2/9/15: $40.00, $39.73 (Amazon); $37.50, $33.65 (2nd)
2/13: $37.50, $33.65; $40.50, $39.66 (Amazon)
2/16: $35.75, $31.95; $42.18 (Amazon), $42.00 (2nd)
2/17: $34.00, $30.30 (2nd); $42.00, $40.00 (2nd)
2/19: $35.75, $31.95 (2nd); $35.75, $35.50 (2nd)
2/20: $35.75, $31.95 (2nd); $35.75, $35.50 (2nd)
2/23: $35.75, $31.95 (2nd); $35.75, $35.50 (2nd)
3/2/15: $34.00, $30.05 (2nd); $38.00, $35.75 (2nd)
3/4: $36.00, $32.20 (2nd); $40.25, $38.25 (2nd)
3/6: $34.00, $30.30 (2nd); $40.25, $38.25 (2nd)
3/9: $34.00, $30.30 (2nd); $42.50, $40.50 (2nd)
3/11: $32.25, $28.40 (2nd); $40.50, $38.25 (2nd)
3/16: $8.10, $6.52 (2nd); $43.00, $41.00 (2nd)
3/18: $8.10, $7.49 (2nd); $44.85, $38.00 (2nd)
3/20: $8.50, $8.10 (2nd); $38.00, $37.95 (2nd)
3/22: $8.50, $8.10 (2nd); $37.95, $37.76 (2nd)
3/24: $26.23 (Amazon), $17.98 (2nd); $38.25 (Amazon), $36.30 (2nd)
3/25: $26.23 (Amazon), $16.62 (2nd); 38.53 (Amazon), $35.00 (2nd)
3/26: $19.25, $16.30 (2nd); $38.75 (Amazon), $35.00 (2nd)
3/29: $26.23 (Amazon), $8.10 (2nd); $39.62 (Amazon), $32.50 (2nd)
3/30/15: $27.75, $26.78 (2nd); $43.45, $41.50 (2nd)
3/31: $54.50, $54.00 (2nd); $40.01 (Amazon), $36.30 (2nd)
4/2: $54.50, $54.25 (2nd); $40.34 (Amazon), $36.30 (2nd)
4/4: $57.75, $26.32 (2nd-Amazon); $40.74 (Amazon), $35.00 (2nd)
4/7: $57.75, $26.32 (2nd-Amazon); $41.10 (Amazon); $32.50 (2nd)
4/9: $30.50, $29.70 (2nd); $41.11 (Amazon), $32.50 (2nd)
4/11/15: $27.75, $26.78 (2nd); $32.50, $30.52 (2nd)
4/12: $28.50, $27.55 (2nd); $32.50, $30.52 (2nd)
4/14: $28.25, $27.33 (2nd); $32.50, $30.25 (2nd)
4/16: $29.00, $26.82 (2nd); $32.50 (2 companies), $32.02 (3rd)
4/18: $29.00, $26.82 (2nd); $32.50, $28.07 (2nd)
4/21: $28.50, $26.30 (2nd); $32.50, $28.87 (2nd)
4/24: $20.75, $17.70 (2nd); $32.50, $30.75 (2nd)
4/25: $20.75, $17.70 (2nd); $32.50, $30.75 (2nd)
4/29/15: $54.20 (x2), $20.75 (2nd); $35.00, $34.80 (2nd)
4/30: $57.50 (x2), $54.20 (2nd); $35.00, $34.80 (2nd)
5/2: $54.20 (x2), $32.75 (x2) (2nd); $35.00, $30.50 (2nd)
5/5: $57.50 (x2), $54.20 (2nd); $32.25, $31.75 (2nd)
5/7: $61.00 (x2), $58.80 (2nd); $35.50, $31.09 (2nd)
5/9: $61.00 (x2), $58.74 (2nd); $35.50, $31.34 (2nd)
5/12: $64.50 (x2), $62.21 (2nd); $35.75, $31.34 (2nd)
5/14: $68.50 (x2), $66.25 (2nd); $35.75, $31.75 (2nd)
5/16: $68.50 (x2), $66.36 (2nd); $35.75, $32.50 (2nd)
5/18: $72.50 (x2), $72.24 (2nd); $36.00, $31.75 (2nd)
5/20: $72.50 (x2), $70.45 (2nd); $36.25, $31.82 (2nd)
5/22: $77.00 (x2), $74.70 (2nd); $36.50, $32.06 (2nd)
5/23: $77.00 (x2), $74.86 (2nd); $36.50, $32.50 (2nd)
5/25: $81.50 (x2), $79.70 (2nd); $36.50, $32.50 (2nd)
5/27: $75.70, $75.25 (2nd); $36.75, $32.30 (2nd)
5/30/15: $73.50, $70.00 (2nd); $37.25, $33.03 (2nd)
6/2: $77.75, $75.44 (2nd); $37.50, $33.03 (2nd)
6/4: $82.50, $80.22 (2nd); $37.50, $33.27 (2nd)
6/5: $82.25, $79.95 (2nd); $37.50, $33.28 (2nd)
6/8/15: $82.25, $82.01 (2nd); $38.00, $33.51 (2nd)
6/10: $80.90, $80.50 (2nd); $38.25, $33.99 (2nd)
6/15: $77.25, $73.10 (2nd); $29.00, $28.75 (2nd)
6/16: $77.25, $73.10 (2nd); $29.00, $28.75 (2nd)
6/18: $81.75, $61.72 (2nd); $31.00, $30.75 (2nd)
6/25: $82.00 (x2), $75.90 (3rd); $28.25, $28.00 (2nd)
6/29/15: $80.25 (x2), $75.90 (3rd); $30.25, $30.00 (2nd)
7/2: $80.25 (x2), $74.30 (3rd); $29.00, $28.75 (2nd)
7/8: $74.00 (x2), $64.00 (3rd); $28.50, $
8/615: $65.50 (x2), $60.30 (x2) (3rd); $33.75, $31.85 (2nd)

Buy Textbooks At The Cheapest Price

4 Aug

WHEN is that, you ask? Well, it’s complicated.

I used Cheapbooks.com to track prices for Fundamentals of Phonetics by Larry H. Small over a year.  Here’s the link:

http://cheapbooks.com/search_director.cgi?catalog=162&query=9780132582100+&submit=Search

 

I found that the best RENTAL prices are in June (under $16).  Which may or not be helpful since a rental time-line is involved.  But that makes renting cool too, because you could have the book for 3 months, 6 months, or a semester–whatever is most useful for YOU.  But, that cheap summer rental period may not extend through your entire semester.  But for summer sessions, maybe the quarter system (I’m largely unfamiliar with it), and if you don’t mind returning books before finals, that might work out.  July is next cheapest with prices of $23-$24.  So rent, pretty much right before fall semester starts to get the best deal.  Renting is not such a sure bet for winter/spring semester.  The prices climb (to a high of $104 in December and January), and from January through April, my particular book wasn’t available for rental at ALL.  But I really think renting, in the fall apparently, is the best investment.  As long as you remember to return the books–to the proper company.  Do NOT do what I did and forget altogether OR what I did in a different semester, turn it in to the wrong company!  What ended up helping me was to use the rental receipt with dates, company, and numbers as my bookmark for the duration of the time I used the book.

I did not bother around with NEW textbook prices at all, because my target audience here is not the spoiled princesses of the world.  Let’s be real here, we’re the USED book-buying types, yes?  The difference in quality between used and new books is minimal, so the value for brand new, isn’t very good.  The book companies are pretty picky about what returns they will accept and I’ve rarely received used books with any markings in them.  There might be one or two highlights, but usually after chapter one, writing-IN-books people peter out on the reading.  And on that note, don’t write/highlight IN your books.  RENTAL (especially), USED, or NEW.  You might end up having to purchase the rental, you’ll get a lower price when you try to return a marked-in used book, and writing in a book you plan to keep means when you go back and try to use it–you’ve answered all the questions already.  So read with a computer or notebook, so you can write important things down OUTSIDE of the book.

USED prices were lowest September through November ($23.16) and then very briefly June 9th ($22.70) with large differences between the best and 2nd best prices.  Prices were highest in December ($93.49) when everyone had sold their books back and companies were flush with stock.

The moral?  IF you can stand to wait until after the semester has started (and take the chance your particular book won’t be sold out everywhere) that’s when prices were lowest for my book.  And if you can buy ahead for winter/sping–that’s best, because prices never really fell back to their June-November rates.

Here are the numbers:

9780132582100
for phonetics

https://www.bookrenter.com/return/new
sign in w/Facebook

7/1 = rent for $17; used for $71
7/8: rent $17; used $81.98
7/13 = rent $24
7/28 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/11 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/17 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/18 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/19 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/20 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/26 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
9/2 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
9/3 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
9/5 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
9/10 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.15, $24.20
9/14 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20
9/24 = rent: $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
10/4 = rent: $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
10/18 = rent: $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
11/8 = rent $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
11/11 = rent $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
11/15 = rent $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
–>DRAMATIC PRICE CHANGE<–
11/19 = rent $101.83; used $81.38, $83.98 (2nd)
11/22 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $83.98 (2nd)
11/25 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $83.98 (2nd)
11/27 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
11/29 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/1 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $90.00 (2nd)
12/3 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/5 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/7 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/11 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/15 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/16 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/19 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/20 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/23 = rent $86.00; used $86, $93.49 (2nd)
12/25 = rent $60.57; used $86, $93.49 (2nd)
12/29 = rent $60.57; used $86.00, $93.49 (2nd)
1/2 = rent $51.14; used $93.49, $97.72 (2nd)
1/5 = rent $51.14; used $93.49, $97.72 (2nd)
1/8 = rent $51.14; used $93.49, $97.72 (2nd)
1/13 = rent $51.26; used $82.53, $108.46 (2nd)
1/15 = rent $51.26; used $82.53, $108.46 (2nd)
1/17 = rent $51.26; used $82.53, $108.46 (2nd)
1/20 = rent $55.07; used $76.71, $80.84 (2nd)
1/22 = rent $55.07; used $76.71, $80.84 (2nd)
1/23 = rent $55.07; used $76.71, $80.84 (2nd)
1/27 = rent none left; used $73.48, $109.78 (2nd)
1/29 = rent none left; used $73.48, $109.78 (2nd)
1/31 = rent N/A; used $73.48, $109.78 (2nd)
2/4 = rent none left; used $81.45, $82.17 (2nd)
2/9 = rent none; used $81.45, $82.17 (2nd)
2/13 = rent none; used $81.45, $82.17 (2nd)
2/17 = rent none; used $72.48,$81.45 (2nd)
2/20 = rent $39.09; used $65.10, $78.49 (2nd)
2/23 = rent none; used $70.27, $95.54 (2nd)
3/2 = rent none; used $45.09, $95.54 (2nd)
3/4 = rent none; used $45.09, $95.54 (2nd)
3/9 = rent none; used $45.09, $95.54 (2nd)
3/16 = rent none; used $55.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/18 = rent none; used $55.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/22 = rent none; used $55.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/26 = rent none; used $39.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/29 = rent none; used $39.49, $95.54 (2nd)
4/2 = rent none; used $39.49, $95.54 (2nd)
4/5 = rent none; used $55.92, $95.54 (2nd)
4/7 = rent none; used $55.92, $95.54 (2nd)
4/10 = rent none; used $55.92, $95.54 (2nd)
4/12 = rent $30.64; used $52.91, $55.95 (2nd)
4/14 = rent $30.64; used $52.91, $55.95 (2nd)
4/16 = rent $30.64; used $52.91, $55.95 (2nd)
4/18 = rent $32.58; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/21 = rent $32.18; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/24 = rent $32.18; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/25 = rent $32.18; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/29 = rent $37.88; used $61.17, $74.25 (2nd)
4/30 = rent $37.88; used $61.17, $74.25 (2nd)
5/2 = rent $37.88; used $47.00, $53.21 (2nd)
5/5 = rent $33.88; used $38.55, $47.00 (2nd)
5/7 = rent $33.88; used $38.55, $47.00 (2nd)
5/9 = rent $33.88; used $38.55, $47.00 (2nd)
5/12 = rent $33.88; used $52.27, $55.40 (2nd)
5/14 = rent $35.61; used $51.86, $57.94 (2nd)
5/16 = rent $35.61; used $54.22, $75.41 (2nd)
5/18 = rent $35.61; used $54.23, $75.41 (2nd)
5/20 = rent $35.61; used $54.23, $75.41 (2nd)
5/23 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
5/25 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
5/27 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
5/30 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
6/2 = rent $15.27; used $28.56, $29.20 (2nd)
6/4 = rent $15.27; used $28.56, $29.20 (2nd)
6/5 = rent $15.27; used $28.56, $29.20 (2nd)
6/9 = rent $15.27; used $22.77, $26.31 (2nd)
6/10 = rent $15.27; used $29.45, $33.49 (2nd)
6/15 = rent $22.98; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
6/17 = rent $22.98; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
6/25 = rent $44.61; used $29.78, $33.27 (2nd)
6/29 = rent $44.61; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/2 = rent $44.61; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/8 = rent $23.74; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/13 = rent $23.70; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/26/15 = rent $23.74; used $32.39, $65.24 (2nd)
8/3/15 = rent $36.15; used $47.00, $55.19 (2nd)

 

When to Buy and Sell Textbooks

3 Aug

In honor of back-to-school August!

It’s always a rip-off, but when can you minimize the pain? Textbooks cost around $100 per book and with 12 credits, you are probably looking at purchasing at least 4 and probably more like 6, because that one English or Anatomy teacher always feels like 3 required books are probably better. . .  That adds up to about $300-$700 PER semester.  Which by the time you get a degree looks more like $1,800 to $5,600 (if you’re REALLY unlucky, or changed your major), which is WAAAAAY too much when you also have to pay tuition, school fees, rent, transportation, food, and health-care.  Save money where you can–your books!  I may not have been writing in this blog often at all, but I have been doing research for you!  You’re welcome.

The Quad 2

But before we get to the data, let me mention (what I consider) the obvious.  Do NOT buy your textbooks from your campus bookstore.  Those are probably the most expensive prices of all.  Sure it’s easy, sure the bookstore is right there, but it’s totally not worth ti.  And do NOT sell your books back anywhere on campus.  Not the bookstore and not the easily accessible sidewalk stand on the way back to your dorm.  My first time around, I could not be bothered to mess about with shipping.  Or research.  And how much money I must have lost!  Let’s not think about it.  It’s really, really, REALLY worth it to bother around with shipping textbooks back and fourth.

Go to any textbook comparison website and find your books at the lowest price to purchase and highest sell-back.  I’ve chosen random sites that compare several book companies for the purpose of showing you it doesn’t really matter which company or site, but they’re all cheaper than campus.  Also, know that no one company always has the best prices, as you will soon see–they fluctuate dramatically ALL the time.

Walking about-July 2012 032

I picked 3 random textbooks (in my Speech & Hearing Sciences major) that I had to buy, then sell back in 2014.  I tracked the purchase price for renting the book and the top two lowest buying price for one book.  On that note, it’s a personal preference whether you want to buy new or used books, rent, or just borrow from the library.  It really depends on the course (make sure you have a chem book accessible ALL the time!!!) and your study style.  If you’re not going to read the books, just go to the library or borrow them from a friend.  But DO read your books–it does help, I swear!  Even if you’re not directly tested on the reading material (you rarely will be), and even if practice problems aren’t assigned to turn in.  It will help you build a foundation for learning, give practice problems, and have useful visuals.  Read.  Your.  Textbooks.  My 4.0 GPA (yup, I’m bragging–and will continue to do so for the rest of my LIFE) I earned the 2nd time around?  Largely due to reading every textbook.  Sometimes professors don’t explain things clearly or at all, and my textbooks gave me a leg up.  Seriously, find the time.

Should you keep the books?

I kept my undergrad textbooks that were in my major and minor.  And I have yet to look at ANY of them.  But I have moved heavy Animal Science, Nutrition, Biology, and Chemistry textbooks from apartment to apartment, state to state, and now they sit in my storage unit–in a different state.  I never used them at all, and they just collect dust losing their value as new editions come out (which is very frequently so publishers can make even MORE money on students).  I wish I would have rented them and saved myself money, muscle-soreness, and space.  Maybe you might want really good textbooks to refer to in your career–but be practical about it.  You probably won’t.  Remember how the info is updated ALL the time.  Go to the Internet, take CE credits, or subscribe to a journal instead.

For the other two books, I tracked the sell-back prices (highest and 2nd highest) over a year.  These trends might vary depending on major and stuff, but I imagine the principles of supply and demand are similar for all subjects.  So next up:  BUYING textbooks, and when the best time to do it is during the year.

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