I decided to write about money. I haven't written in two months because I started a new job and have been a tad bit busy. This past week has been great since it is Christmas vacation week. We have had a week to chill with the kids, which overall has been great. Our chilling area is small, but we are lucky just the same.
Wednesday will be the start of work again and we will all go our separate ways each day until dinner time. More about dinner time later. I do want to discuss it, but I will talk about money first.
How important is money? Money is a funny thing. For years I dwelled on the amount of debt we had. We had it for various reasons. We both came into our marriage with varying degrees of it. When we were both working full time we thought nothing of credit card payments. The paychecks kept coming. Never did I envision that I might actually stay home for awhile once we had children. Being a teacher I was lucky enough that I was able to stay home for the remainder of the year after number one was born. The plan was to go back to work the following fall. Once I made those first few phone calls and we found out what the cost of day care was we were shocked. Seriously shocked. That was when I had my " I will just waitress at night idea". And that is what I did for five years and through my second pregnancy. It worked. No, it was not glamorous, and I gave up a lot of weekends, but it did work. However, that did not begin until she was almost one. We had saved some money to help when I was home, but it disappeared quickly. Some months we paid one credit card with another. Things broke that had to be fixed (oil tank) that we did not have the money for. Yes, we were ill prepared like many people are.
In the time we have been married we have both lost some loved ones that were generous enough to leave us money. There is a lot of sadness when someone dies and leaves you money. My husband was left money that got us out of debt. It seemed like a miracle. We went back and forth trying to figure out the best thing to do with the money before we paid the debt off. At some point we need a bigger house. We pondered putting the money towards renovations or saving it, but in the end getting rid of the debt felt really good. We are in a very tiny house, but believe me you sleep better when the debt is gone.
Since getting rid of the debt we have had to replace both cars. So yes, now we have two car payments. It stinks, but they aren't credit cards, so I feel better about them. If we still had that debt and two car payments we would be in a heap of trouble. We just received some more money. My uncle, who lost his life at 59 to skin cancer left all his money to his nieces and nephews. He was special needs and worked low paying jobs his entire life. Knowing how hard he worked, how much he loved life, and how he much he thought of all of us breaks my heart. Being given the gift of this money makes me want to be as frugal as I can be to work towards our goal of a slightly bigger house. Yes, only slightly bigger. I don' think I need an over sized colonial. I don't want it anymore. After living in about 850 square feet for eight years I think a 1600 square foot house would be fine. Except I can't dwell on a bigger house anymore. It is a waste of my time. My life is going on right in front of me. I have a perfect family in a cozy house. We have all we need. We may want a bigger house and we may have it some day, but right now this is where we are and I want to be happy where I am.
In comparing ourselves to other people we want more than we need. From talking with neighbors, we know our house was owned by the same couple for over fifty years. They raised three boys in these four rooms. It doesn't seem possible that someone could live here for fifty years and not build an addition. Once upon a time people lived within their means. We over buy, and over mortgage, and over spend. Does a bigger house make you any happier? I think it is just more to clean.