money

year end rambling….

Posted on

15726526_10154329534149372_6148565333881019912_n

I’ve been pondering, yes more than usual, and I think that I am going to throw some of my thoughts out there.  No order, no goal.

I’m sick and tired of the economy.  And seeing as I am part of it, I’m going on strike.  For the year 2017 I will only buy necessities like food and toilet paper. And of course home repairs, car repairs, and vet bills…..but you get the idea.  F-them.

About social media, yeah it sucks.  It time sucks and it can be a wasteful distraction from better things.  I mean seriously, you’d feel one hundred times better if you took a nap rather than spend an hour on Facebook. Cutting back, but not cutting out.

And regarding Donald, I dont want to hear what he tweeted.  Until a story is actually news worthy, I’m tuning the Donald out.  Can I tell you something? When I hear his name my stomach literally turns.  He, and the mention of him, makes me physically sick.

I will support issue that are dear to my heart.  Mother Theresa once said,

“I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I’ll be there.”

I never understood it until this year.  It’s that mentality that I have to carry to get through this f-up world.  War and social issues are complicated and there is just way too much negativity.  My body can’t take any additional turmoil.  So I hope this year, to support some of the most simplest causes protecting human rights, animal rights and our environment.

You do know I am extremely liberal.  And by the way, I am proud of that.

I made a list to live by, for my daily grind….it’s a bit over reaching.   I can’t find it now. Shit.  I forget everything.  It was things to do everyday.  Making life habits.  Now I have to think it all up again.

  1. read
  2. give something
  3. do art
  4. play with dogs
  5. write something
  6. I cant remember… probably yoga….I’ve been meaning to take that up for years.

Anyway you get the idea.  I just can’t waste another year filling my head with all the crap in the world that I can not control.

Those are my thoughts for now. Just ramblings …. I hope to be writing better stuff real soon…..Carry on and cheers!

Advertisements

Free from the grip

Posted on Updated on

This is basically how I feel and what I believe in a nut shell.

Please watch and actually take a moment to see how materialism has shaped your life.  I was forced to look at my ways, and I am better for it.  At least, I feel better and I am happier.

I am free from the grip of corporations, and I strive to become even more free each and every day.

Cheers!

For Real

Posted on Updated on

We bit the bullet, for real this time.

We bought a house. This house we tried to buy before, maybe in February, but it got into multiple offers and we lost. Can’t remember what number it was? Maybe house #2 out of seven.

This house is small, not tiny, just like I wanted and cheap just like I wanted but it needs a ton of work.

I am going to document our progress on my blog “Project1923“, rightly named this because the house was built in 1923. I think it has its original garage that may have house a car like the one pictured below.  Heck those people may have lived in my house. I love thinking about how different their lives were and how similar.  So much time has past – 89 years!

Anyway, I’ll have to have another garage sale. We still have too much stuff and the stuff we have is way too big for our new small home.

This is my perfect chance to put everything I have learned to work, like “less is more”,”live in the moment,” “perfection is an illusion,”and “everything will work out.”

I plan to enjoy the work and I hope to make good choices.

I am STILL  finding it a bit difficult to believe this is really happening.  But it is.  So I’ve got to get ready. I am so excited!

We get the key on April 27th, but we won’t be moving in until some work is completed.

Please visit my Project1923 blog once and a while and help us out.  We need all the helpful suggestions and creative ideas you may have.

Cheers!

Tip: When it’s 90 degrees and you’re working on fixing something, and your patience is running thin, stop and get a cold drink for everyone who’s there.

Inspiration:”Spring passes and one remembers one’s innocence. Summer passes and one remembers one’s exuberance. Autumn passes and one remembers one’s reverence. Winter passes and one remembers one’s perseverance.”- Yoko Ono

One-day one thing: Make signs for garage sale and pick a date.

“Do you feel lucky?”

Posted on Updated on

It hasn’t been much more than a week and already I am breaking retracting the contract on our new house.  I was ready for the experience to live in the city with everyone and anyone.  We haggled a bit and signed an agreement last Wednesday.  Over the weekend we checked out the yard because we needed to determine where the fence should be installed for our dogs.

Two days ago, I was at the property with my fence contractor.  He had to measure the entire perimeter, and as we spoke he began to discuss the area behind the garage.  We walked over and to my surprise I found this:

He said, “This is fresh, someone is sending a message.”  It could have been wet for all I know, I was too stunned to touch it.   The graffiti wasn’t there when we made our offer, it wasn’t there Saturday as we walked the yard.  No other nearby garage got tagged, just ours.

This little white girl raised in suburbia, isn’t fit for this.  I started thinking I would actually have to shoot someone.  Then my mind raced on, and I thought if they come in my house, I’d have to shoot them inside and all their guts would be everywhere.  My dogs would probably eat nasty thug guts.  Gross.  At that point, I decided its better to shoot when they are on the porch or when they step onto the property. Less mess.

Oh my God.  Am I going to live like this? I have never even held a gun in my hand, but you know what?  I am going to learn. And when I get good, I am getting the biggest caliber I can handle.  Peace,  love,  don’t f*ck with me.

I called the police, they told me to send the images to the detective unit that handles gangs.  I did that.  I will never hear back, because I am not buying that house. Ever. This is not going to be my problem.

I was only joking previously when I compared this house to the one in Gran Torino .  (awesome movie) Little did I know just how close I was to the truth about lucky house number #7.

However, I do still see the luck in this.  I was lucky to find the graffiti  before we closed and transferred the title.  We literally dodge a bullet or maybe two.  Call me crazy, but so many things lined up, it makes me feel like someone was watching over us.  ( I like to believe that is true, because it warms my heart)

I just sent off the mutual release form and hopefully that will be signed tomorrow by the sellers.  Back to square one, just a bit wiser and a little stronger.

Stay Tuned.  Cheers.

Update 2/24/2012: Seller says they will NOT sign the release.  However, we never signed or initialed the seller’s counter offer so there is no contract in place.  Hopefully now they will sign the mutual release.

Tip: Trust yourself.  I have said this before but it bares repeating, trust your instincts they will never let you down.

Inspiration: ” We all have our own life to pursue, our own kind of dream to be weaving. And we all have some power to make wishes come true, as long as we keep believing.” – Louisa May Alcott

One-day one-thing: Be grateful when something works out.

Giving Change a Chance.

Posted on Updated on

I want to be one of those people that makes a difference.  But I’m frustrated because I never get my ideas off the ground.  For whatever reasons I lack the focused dedication that is required.  I get one idea and that may get shot down or hit a road-block and before I know it, I have another idea.

I was brought to tears today because while talking about this I began to realize that maybe I am not cut out to be the facilitator. That maybe the best  I could do was throw my ideas out there and just maybe someone else would pick one up and run with it.  Maybe someone out there has the drive, the time and the focus but needs some ideas.

So that’s what I am going to do.  Every so often I’m going to un-clutter my ideas and give them away.

Here is an old idea, which I still think has merit.

Pennies4People.  During the Kosovo war I coordinated the logistics with the Red Cross and National City Bank, (now PNC bank ), to collect and process pennies which were to be donated from students at my children’s’  elementary school. I was to make the collection containers, collect the pennies weekly and drive them to the bank, and the bank would run them through their coin machines to count and then issue a check to the Red Cross.  The Red Cross, a non-political neutral entity, would use the funds to help the refuge families struggling in the midst of the war.

The concept was that elementary school children (grades 3rd through 5th) could join together and raise donation money.  Everyone has a penny, everyone could participate no matter if they were wealthy or not.  And for one penny the students would know they were helping children on the other side of the world.  I was hopeful that this program would spread through the city school system, and grow city by city.

I owned the web site Pennies4People.  Everything was in place.  That is until I received a letter from the elementary school principal telling me that the school had a Serbian family in attendance, and they thought we had to be considerate of their feelings.  This made zero sense to me.  I tried to explain that the Red Cross was not picking sides, that they are politically neutral,  the funds would be used to help everyone.  People who needed food, water, shelter.  It didn’t matter.  The principal’s answer was NO!

I was totally dejected, my contacts at National City Bank and the Red Cross were equally dismayed, but it didn’t matter. Life went on.

(c) 1999, The Washington Post. Photography by Carol Guzy. Reprinted with permission. Kosovar refugee Agim Shala, 2, is passed through a fence into the hands of grandparents at a refugee camp in Kukes, Albania- 3 May, 1999.(c) 1999, The Washington Post. Photography by Carol Guzy.  Kosovar refugee Agim Shala, 2, is passed through a fence into the hands of grandparents at a refugee camp in Kukes, Albania- 3 May, 1999.

I believe(d) in teaching our children the importance of compassion and understanding for those suffering, and equally important showing them how the smallest action can make a big difference.  I thought this was a win-win-win, if there is any such thing.  The principal shot it down, and my idea died with that rejection letter.

Since that time, many different organizations have used the fund raising term “Pennies for People.” Back then no one was on the internet with this idea besides me, but that doesn’t matter now.  I realize this isn’t the most original idea today, but that’s not the point, it’s still an idea.

So if you see anyway you might be able to use this for something good please do.  I’ll continue to post ideas.  Maybe one day you’ll read one that will work for you.  And if you do please take it and make change happen.

(Right now watching a football game in the background I thought why not have Pennies4People on any Sunday at every stadium that has a game. All those people in the stands have pennies.  Banks need good PR -Donate to homeless shelters or for heating oil for the elderly, anything – you get the idea)

Peace.

Grinchy

Posted on Updated on

Okay here we go, into the holidays a time when people buy gifts for people because they are supposed to, or because they really want to, or because it’s tradition. Many people do this knowing that they really can’t afford to spend their cash, or worse their credit, and they do it anyway.

I used to love the holidays. Loved them. One year I even dragged my DH to the mall on Black Friday just because I wanted to be part of the chaos. Another year I flew to NYC and back the same day, just to be there on Black Friday for the fun of it.

I use to buy things for people I barely knew, just because it was fun. Fun to shop, fun to buy, fun to wrap and fun to give. Also I bought gift for people in case I ran into them somewhere. Many of those gifts are in my box of “new” things in our storage unit. ( somewhere )

When the children were little I spent every Christmas Eve wrapping while watching “The Christmas Story” marathon, I never went to bed. I would finish about six a.m. and they would be wide awake shortly there after. Those were the good years, even if I was sure to end up exhausted and full of champagne by noon. It was fun and exciting. They were always so surprised and honestly very cute. It was unpredictable and all brand new to them..

After many years of playing Santa Claus I started to find myself a little burned out, but it was still fun.

This year is drastically different. Here are the factors: My children are young adults. They either don’t want anything or what they do want is way too expensive. As for us, we are trying to declutter, so we don’t want anything. Nothing please. Additionally we are in a savings mode, because in the back of our minds we think we’ll be looking for a house again soon.

There will be no decorating, because we aren’t living in our own home. We won’t have our own tree, our own music or anything. And seeing as we were never church goers, we don’t have that tradition to fall back on.

I guess we’ll do the usual, the annual Christmas exchange of cash inside cards for the cousins. (that’s what everyone in the entire family does – every year) We never know if they will be there or not? But I always have the cards with cash ready.

It will be cold. It’s always cold.

This past many years have taught me so much, but right now I am tired of learning these life lessons. Enough already.

( which normally means I am about to get slammed with another one )

So this year I’ll be asking Santa for a big red velvet bag full of love, joy and peace, life lessons NOT included. That’s all I want.

“Pssst Santa, can you hear me? “

Tip: Remind yourself it’s only one day and read Gandhi before company arrives.

Inspiration: ” Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances.” – Mohandas K. Gandhi

One-day one-thing: Send someone who has crossed your mind a seasonal card even if you haven’t stay in touch.

I’m going to let you in on a little secret.

Posted on Updated on

Usually I would keep my business to myself, but I am tired of that. 

We put an offer in on a house.  There is a tiny sticky issue.   The house has received at least  seven offers.  Seven freakin’ offers.  Dang.  And we will not know anything for seven to ten days as to who’s offer gets the house.

It’s not my house in the country.  It’s not my house on the beach. It’s not the prefab that I so adored.  It’s not a loft in Brooklyn.  It’s exactly what I thought, maybe I even said, I would never do.   No other specifics just yet, because I don’t want to jinx anything.

Side note: Realize whenever you say “never”  that will be your future.

Immediately, when we walked into the house it felt like it was mine, as if it belonged to me.   No ifs, ands, or buts about it, everyone agreed.  That never happens.  Well it happened this time.  I find myself daydreaming and placing furniture in the rooms, and making mental images of what we will fix first.  Then I force myself to stop.  Don’t get attached.  Sort something.  Write something.  Do something to take your mind off it.  Too late.

Metaphor for my life, maybe your's also?

Crazy I know.  But what is crazier is that I know mentally, I can’t I don’t want to take on another disappointment.  Days before we made our offer I asked for advice from my son.  He’s level headed, smart and lucky- emphasis on lucky. I never met anyone else that lucky.  I kept asking him, what if we don’t get this house? How am I going to handle it?  I always have such high hopes, sky-high expectations and I am an eternal optimist. (that is except when I’m sad and longing for the day to end. )

I wanted an answer as to how I was going to recover if our bid didn’t win.  I wanted some sort of reassurance that magic fairy dust would fall from the sky and gentle cover me and make everything beautiful and all sparkle-ly.  I wanted to hear something other than, “it wasn’t meant to be” or “this just means the next opportunity will be better.”

I sound like a spoiled brat. (<-dislike)

In my reality, and in my logical mind, I know it won’t be the end of the world if we don’t get it.  I know that.  I know whatever happens I will be fine.  I already am an incredibly fortunate person.  Life will go an and it will be great. I know this to be true.

I even met someone who owes hens.

But that’s not my entire point here.  This time when the cards are stacked against us,  I’d like to be on the side that wins.  I once won a Little Playmate cooler when I was senior in high school.  Woo-hoo!  It was fun to win.  Plus this blue and white cooler, our school colors, held a six pack of 3.2 beer perfectly.  School spirit when drinking. Yay! Needless to say it’s been awhile.   Winning might actually freak me out, but I will happily suffer the freak out.

Am I being too selfish to want something more, like this house?  I don’t know.  Where is the line?  I have no clue.  I certainly don’t want to cross the line.  I don’t want to be greedy.

So that’s my news of the day.  I am back on the roller coaster of my life.  I think that’s just the way my life rolls.  No matter what, the coaster keeps coming back, it stops right in front of me, and I willingly hop in anxious for yet another ride.  My choice, I know, and I am good with that.  No hands always!

Cheers.

Tip: Use the word never when you want something to happen.

Inspiration: “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. ” ~ Mark Twain

One-day one-thing: Treat you body and mind, take a drop-in yoga class.

This is exactly what I won.