Where's Margie's Money?

A tribute to not rushing into things…

This week I’ve had two very good lessons on the importance of not rushing into things . . .that is, not throwing money at a problem when there are alternative options available.

First example:  My computer.  Yesterday I lamented that I had inadvertently downloaded some very aggressive malware that wiped my computer’s hard drive.  Despite several sweeps with a couple of different virus/spy sweeper programs – the malware kept popping back up.  Enter my sad face. 😦

I admit, at first I panicked – my immediate thought was that I had to get this to a computer person to fix it.  But then, I realized that taking it to a shop would be an expensive option (about $250). 

Then, DH called from work and said he saw some great sales on new laptops.  He even offered to buy it for me!  What a sweet pea, right?  But thanks to what I’ve learned on my PF journey, I knew that buying a new laptop wasn’t an option EVEN if he offered to pay for it out of his budget.  I wanted to solve this problem myself.  So I thanked him for his generous offer and told him that I didn’t want to rush into buying a new lap top and if it turned out that a new computer was my only option, I’d look to working it into my budget over the next few months.

So, after work yesterday, I sat down with a firm resolve to figure this problem out.  My first thought was wiping the hard drive and reinstalling the operating system (but since I don’t have the disc, I would have had to buy it for about $90… thankfully I get a great discount on computer products through my work).  But then I thought maybe I could just try to restore my computer to the last time it had done an automatic update – which was just last weekend.  And . . . it worked! 

I lost all of my files in the process (photos and documents) but that’s okay because I realized . . . I had been smart and recently backed all those up on a thumb drive!  Yay!  And things like engagement and wedding photos were on a disc.  Double yay!

So, crisis averted!  But special thanks to Lane at In Mint Condition who was so sweet in her comment to me and for offering to help!  I’m sure I would have taken you up on that if I didn’t figure it out last night!  The PF blogging community is totally awesome. 

Second example: You may remember that about a month ago I was super proud of myself for purchasing a baby bouncy chair at a consignment shop for only $13.  It retailed new for about $65 so this was a pretty great discount. 

Behold, 2nd hand baby seat:

Well, a few weeks later I decided to test it out.  I went to turn it on and . . . nothing.  Strange!  So I went out and bought new batteries, installed them and this time all I got for my efforts was a few sad warbles of a lullaby, a half-assed shake or two, and then “wha what wah” nothing.  Darn!!

Over the weekend, I asked my parents to drop by the coupon for Babies R Us that they had gotten in the mail.  I figured my only option at this point was to call that $13 purchase a loss and go about buying a new one.  Thankfully, my father, Mr. Frugal, is also a (retired) electronics engineer.  He asked if he could take it home and tinker with it (he LOVES to tinker).  I was doubtful that he could get it to work but I agreed to put off any further shopping until he had a look at it.

Well, this morning, I got an email that said it was fully operational!  All the buttons work, it lights up, it shakes/vibrates, and he even said it will make me a cup of coffee if I want it to (well, I don’t know about THAT).  Thanks, Dad!!  He just saved me about $80 (the cost of the original purchase and the cost of replacing it new). 

I have DEFINITELY learned my lesson this week from the universe. . . when things break/fall apart/don’t work out as planned – don’t automatically assume that you have to throw money at the problem to fix it.  Instead, explore all other options, stick to your PF guns, and in the words of my favorite fashion consultant, Tim Gunn, “make it work.”

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  1. * Lane says:

    I’m so glad your laptop & baby seat are working again. Such a great example on not throwing money at problems, and preparing for the worst (like backing up your data – my clients don’t do this.)

    Make it work!

    | Reply Posted 9 years, 1 month ago

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