When your money's (temporarily) not yours.

It's that time again!

You guessed it!

I'm on my soap box!

"What's the deal this time?" you ask?

Someone borrowed money from me without asking if they could borrow money from me and they're not giving it back in a timely manner.

Yes, some people would call this theft.  But the credit card companies who back our debit cards call it an "authorization hold".

Which is fine and reasonable in theory and well-executed practice.

But this is one of those instances where I think we fell through the cracks and are left holding the yucky end of the stick.

You see, husband needed gas on Tuesday, and since we had the means to buy gas, Husband went to SamsClub to get gas.  This is part of our normal routine.  There is no problem here.

When Husband puts his card in the gas pump, Visa checks to see if we have $125 in our account and they place a hold on it so that they can verify that we have the funds to pay for the fuel we pump into our car.  Though I feel $125 is a bit excessive, I'm okay with this because I'm a logical person who can understand that businesses have to cover themselves.  (By the way, different cards have different hold amounts, it's not up to the gas stations how much is held, it's up to your card company.)

This also isn't typically a problem because at the end of the say SamsClub submits their charges to our bank, which they did, and then Visa releases the $125 hold on our account...which they didn't.

They didn't do it on Wednesday either.  So four days later, we've not only paid $46.14 for the gas we purchased, but Visa is still holding $125 from our account and not allowing us to spend that either.

Which is making me a bit irritable because it's Black Friday and...well, I had other plans for my money today.  So thank you Visa (and I mean that as sarcastically as possible), the icing on the cake is that if it was your money I was borrowing, you'd charge me 13.5% interest plus any applicable fees.

Pay it Forward Friday | November 3

Yesterday was a less-than-stellar day.

Everyone in my household woke up with a rain-cloud over their head and--I don't know about them--when I left house, it was still there.

And it got darker and began to lightning and thunder as I drove Ty to school and idiot after imbecile after downright stupid drivers got in my way, slowed me down, or pulled out in front of me.

And then I sat at the exit of the school drive for five minutes waiting to turn left.

But apparently all the other drivers saw the storm cloud over my head and decided they didn't want to take any chances in stopping their cars long enough to let me and the very long line of traffic behind me continue on our way.  So after five full minutes of sitting and fuming and inwardly screaming inside my head, I whipped to the right onto the road, zipped a short distance down to a parking lot on the left, cut my tires to the left, and pulled out going the direction I needed to go but certainly not in a better mood for the delay.

I came to work and the cloud persisted, even though it was time to put on my smile and my Good Neighbor attitude.  But my morning set the tone for my day and it took all day to recover from those first few hours of frustration and irritation.

So when this morning, the attitudes of my family started to get too hurried (and worried that we were going to work pants-less because the dryer wasn't drying fast enough), I called a time-out in my own head and suggested a do-over. 

Because life isn't perfect.  But it is what I allow it to be.  And since yesterday I allowed it to be pretty rotten, I wanted to change things up and go a different route today.

And even though I had to lecture the kiddo about not doing what he was asked to do and instead doing what he chose to do...and even though I had to tell him four times to do something and would have seriously swatted his butt for his back-talk if he hadn't been sitting on it (and I driving) at the time I was--the whole time--trying to remind myself to make today a good day.

Because it really is my choice.

And it came easier when I pulled up to the stop sign at the end of the school drive to make my left turn around (instead of through) the campus and less than 30 seconds later, a woman in a van stopped just so I could turn and continue on with my day.

And I said a quick prayer of thanks and asked God to bless that woman and help her through her day today because she had both blessed and helped me with just a few seconds of her time and a very courteous gesture.

And, as I like to do, I looked for an opportunity to pay it forward.  And I was disappointed when I pulled into work and no such opportunity had presented itself.  And I sat through work hoping for a customer that I could give a little extra to and bless just because I'd been blessed.  And tonight I drove home through bumper-to-bumper traffic looking for anyone to help (more than just slowing down and allowing them to change lanes in front of me instead of just speeding up and letting them fall into line behind me).  But no big opportunity presented itself.

But I'll keep looking because it's my turn to pay it forward.