Saturday, November 20, 2010
Meeting Our Needs
I am often asked by single people interested in adoption what they should do in preparing their finances, or even in just managing them.
Gail Vaz-Oxlade has a TV show, Til Debt Do Us Part (love it), that I watch, but I also read her blog. Indeed, I read a ton of personal finance blogs, but simply to answer the question, I'll quote her and what she does:
•I still track my expenses every day and live on a budget.
•I don’t carry any debt.
•I have enough insurance to take care of the kids if the caca hits the fan.
It's a simple process to write it all down each day, I use an Excel Spreadsheet that I specifically micro designed for our own personal household, and I use Quicken and online bill pay.
Who wants to have to tend to all that? Well, duh, I do. I wanna be in control, I wanna know where our money has gone, and what I can do to improve our finances.
I don't find it tedious, but rather exhilarating.
I subscribe to a few eccentric ideas, this I know. I love the Buy Nothing Campaign, I thrill to the Spend Nothing Weekends, Minimalism attracts me excitedly, and if this makes me a geek, then so what?
I have to figure out how to pay for braces, weddings, and college.
And Honey, poor Martin. I'd taken him in with CW as he'd complained about his retainer not fitting properly. As CW had his braces removed, before I'd even finished my dumb monthly installments, they slapped 'em back in Martin's mouth, much to his astonishment.
He's so sweetly unflappable, he took it in stride. I know I'm blessed to be his mother, he'll be 17 this winter, he's been my son for nearly 15 years, such a great kid, in severe contrast to his very, very troubled birth siblings.
I took Chuy and Mayra out for their Birthday Shopping Event, I bought Sabrina this shirt for $1.99 at Rugged Wearhouse, finding the same shirt minutes later at Rue 21 for $9.99, hollering, "Highway Robbery!" out loud,
Are you kidding me? Who pays $9.99 for a t-shirt? Probably my first wedding band didn't cost that much back in 1972.
"This is why you shouldn't go in stores," Chuy mentioned the obvious.
I would've bought me something if I'd seen anything that caught my fancy, but I didn't. "Who wears this crap?" I mused aloud, again to the embarrassment of my self-conscious teenagers, me staring longingly at Barnes & Noble, across the parking lot, but knowing that wasn't in my budget either.
Sweet, gorgeous Miss Cissy is downsizing, shutting down offices and she brought us three computers plus school supplies yesterday. We certainly needed more computers with the 15 of us living here, yet dadgum if I'd have gone and bought new ones, it wasn't in our budget. I'm paying off the new bathroom floors and have a long list of deferred maintenance projects. I was super excited yesterday over these surprise gifts.
Another dear friend, a good-looking comma counter, had matched me up with a church in another county that brought us Thanksgiving groceries yesterday, a ton of them, which leads me to prayer. I do constantly pray for our needs.
Our needs are always met. Our icebox is slap full, so's the pantry.
Just because I think I need an outdoor stone hot tub with a reflecting pool and fire pit doesn't mean God thinks I need it. Therefore I don't have one...yet. When the kids are grown, that's what I mean about feathering my own nest. Y'all best call first before you come visit me. I might be snoring in my hot tub.
But for now I have mouths to feed.
Miss Kimberly called with food left from a school function, a former soccer coach sent me three bags of incredibly nice clothes that fit Jack and Nando perfectly, and I know if I went to yard sales today, I'd find stuff we've been needing or wanting. Truth is, I don't feel like we really need anything at the moment, I feel our needs are met, and I want to spend today cleaning our house in preparation of the Thanksgiving week and all the company that's coming.
Hey wait, I need a house keeper.
Big laugh, snicker, snort...like they wouldn't run in fright over what I encounter here.
We're having a spate of bed wetting, but I understand that it comes from grief and fear lately, Grandpa left them, in their minds, they don't quite have the level of inner emotional control they'd previously been able to access, this will get better, this I know, but in the meantime, I'm camped out in the laundry room, washing sheets and hanging out blankets and comforters, thinking about where I'd put this hot tub that's surely in my future.
This picture is a casualty of Tony's rage, the plant pot was broken when Allen was being silly, snippets of life with traumatized children.