Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Autumn Upon Us...

Although I hate the darkening days, I love fall. I love the smell of fall. I love the crispness in the air. I love the shadows of the lowering sun thru the trees. I love the rustle of the leaves in their colorful dying beauty. I love seeing the fruits of the harvest. I love tasting the vegetables that will no longer grow in the field. Winter is coming, but let me bask in autumn for just a few more weeks.

The house hunt is on. I have spent every weekday driving around to each and every house I found that sounded even a little bit like one we might spend a year or so in. One is too small, another on too busy a street. One smells of cat urine and another has creaky floors. One has no windows and another in a bad part of town. We finally put an application in for a cute little house with a cute little yard. It has a big bay window that overlooks nothing in particular, but at least lets the sun in. A spot for some tomatoes in the spring, a dishwasher to save my hands and a gas stove for perfect cooking temps. It's on a dead end street which makes it a quiet one, even if it IS on the not-so-great side of town. The floors are tiled and there is a wood stove. The bedrooms are small, but the open spaces and high ceilings help make up for it. I would like to have this house. We will see if they take the application. Sigh...

On the homeschool front, we made it up to The Nature Conservancy one day last week with the Unschoolers/Project Wild bunch.
Great place. I didn't even know they had a local piece of land. We found wooly bear caterpillars, voles, praying mantis', birds of all sorts and BEES. Lots and lots of bees. The boardwalk takes you around about a 1 mile loop through the wetland marshes of the eastern shore of The Great Salt Lake.
Make the trip to Layton if you want to see why we NEED the wetlands & marshes.

Mandatory adorable kid picture...
Look at that brilliant baby! She wants in on the homeschool action starting.... NOW!!!

So what else is going on? Well, we still live in a camper on North Temple... The neighbors hate our cats per usual.
I sat down and looked at some of the financial stuff for the first time... EVER. I was appalled of course at the mess it is. We couldn't possibly afford all that we had acquired OR spent. I then proceeded to make an actual budget. Starting Saturday, we do not spend more than Mark makes. EVER. No more blowing money at a whim, no more "oh I'll find a way to pay for it later". No more "yes, of course we can afford it" (no we really can't but I won't tell you no)'s. No more lying about how much money there is or where it's coming from. No more too many features on too many phones. No more $200 sets of legos that never get touched. No more $100 dinners out, four times a month. No more WAY too expensive truck, which means no more camper. This budget is one that will be adhered to if we are to continue to live together. Money does not come in an endless supply, no matter HOW BADLY we wish it did. It never had to get this bad. All he ever had to do was ask for help. Now it's bad, but it won't get worse. Now we have a budget that is do-able. Well, it's do-able if we do it. I've been poor. Mark has never been poor. I have spent plenty of years not traveling and not going to dinner because I couldn't afford it, let's hope he isn't miserable doing the same. He has an open door and his freedom if he would prefer a different life. I won't make him stay and "be poor". He does, however, make WAY too much money to be this broke. Although I hate taking "charge" of "where the money goes", I'll be glad to get off this revolving credit line runaway train bound for a derailment. It was bound to happen sooner or later. I only wish he would put his arrogance and pride in the garbage can where it belongs and realize he doesn't know it all... can't do it all... and learn to ask for help.

When all the money is gone; what ELSE will you have to offer? Hopefully something with true value. Hopefully a seed of compassion is planted. Hopefully you will be grateful for what you DO have. Hopefully in your crisis, in your darkest hour thinking of what others will think of you, you will think of something else. Hopefully you will realize you were never poor. You are not poor now. Hopefully you will embrace the things that DO make you rich. Perhaps you will offer your hand to someone in need when that is all you have to offer? Perhaps you will realize that you can't take it with you. Hopefully you WILL realize that you are worth more than your paycheck or credit score. So we won't get to eat sushi every time we feel like it or go to Hawaii "just because"? I am a very wealthy woman. I eat well, my kids are healthy. We have more than most. We need for nothing. We do not worry about life threatening disease, famine, war or clean water. The fact that we don't have a truck and camper is nothing. You always said you hated the attempt to keep up with the jones's... how about let's not even try?



McMama said...

Just wanted to say "hi" and let you know I was checking in on you. Good luck with the budget! It's probably good to be straightening that out now, what with the economic scariness of late. Yikes!


noordinaryspider said...

Your post really helped put things in perspective for me. I am so glad you're my friend!