Home > I've been away so long

I've been away so long

December 13th, 2008 at 04:36 pm

What' wrong with me?

When things get tougher, I stop sharing my woes. But it helps me to share, to keep myself on track, so I'm going to keep trying to do it.

My finances have become inextricably woven with my sister's. I know many of you would say cut her loose, she made her own mess, but I can't do that. Aside from my kids, she is the family member I am closest to. And she really is trying to change. While we once thought her house would go into foreclosure, she has now made the mortgage payment for four months running; she is paying her bills, paying for her food and gas, and even has a little in savings (which I keep in my account, so she can't raid it). It still worries me that a single emergency will set her all the way back, but I am so grateful she has made the strides she has.

However, I am falling behind. Christmas gifts and a trip to the Midwest, among other things, has given me an $800 Discover bill to pay next month. For the first time since I have retired, I am facing the possibility that I might not be able to pay it in whole.

I have to drive to Florida in a week or so to be with my cousin. Before I go I should take the car in for its 90,000 mile checkup. Both my cats need to go to the vet for checkups. In January I have to start paying $456 a month for health insurance -- and I am only drawing $637 out of my retirement fund.

The booth did well last month, with sales of $308, but so far this month there hasn't been much activity. I may not even make the rent payment.

I can't look for a job because I have to go back and forth between here and Florida. Besides, my cousin IS my job, I need to be around to help her.

So I am feeling frustrated. Not exactly frightened -- I know I will have a roof over my head, no matter what. But the economy has taken its toll on my cousin's portfolio, so she cannot help me much other than providing me with a home.

This isn't what I expected when I retired.

But I will persevere.

On a different note, yesterday I was feeling like I just rattle around and do nothing -- so I decided to keep a log of my daily accomplishments. I was surprised that I DO do something all day!

Yesterday I:

Sewed buttons on a sweater.
Folded laundry.
Wrapped Christmas presents.
Updated my budget.
Updated my family blog.
Made homemade vegetable beef soup and egg salad.
Bought gas.
Stocked booth with new items.
Entered a bunch of Pepsi, Coke, and Stouffer's codes.
Ran the dishwasher.
Bought 5 shares of stock in King Pharmaceuticals on ING Sharebuilder.
Talked to my grandson on Skype.

Not so bad for a do-nothing day.

7 Responses to “I've been away so long”

  1. gamecock43 Says:

    Welcome back...we are in a recession, things are tough but you sound motivated enough to be a quick smart thinker in really tough times. I hope your sister continues to do well.

  2. Ima saver Says:

    Welcome back, I have missed you!

  3. Analise Says:

    Welcome back. I missed you posts. I do understand about your sister. My sister is my best friend and I would do anything for her. Best wishes that things turn around soon.

  4. homebody Says:

    Good luck getting through your recent challenges.

  5. Amber Says:

    Welcome back, I too have been gone awhile and I can say blogging really helps and good luck with everything

  6. fern Says:

    I've always enjoyed reading your posts and i have missed seeing them. I'm not sure i understand why you're living in NC but also traveling frequently to Florida? I went back to read some of your previous posts to see if maybe i missed something, but i couldn't find anything there.

    Becus i guess that was the first thing that came to mind in terms of suggestions i could offer. I was going to suggest a part-time job, even just 15 hours or so a week, i'm betting would make a big difference in creating a financial comfort zone.

    Otherwise, priority setting in times of a crunch is always the best thing. If you really are having serious $ problems, i would say that spending money on your car and your pets is much more important than buying Christmas gifts. I'm sure your family will understand, but you sure don't want to be stranded somewhere on the highway if your car breaks down.

    Good luck with everything. This economic downturn is causing a lot of people who were near or just starting retirement to reconsider their work options, sadly.

  7. Carolina Bound Says:

    My cousin has a second home in Florida, which is near her parents (my aunt and uncle). She always goes down there in the winter both to escape the cold and to spend some time near her parents. Because I am caring for her, I go, too.

    I don't really spend much on Christmas presents -- I only buy for my children and grandchild, and those gifts are a pleasure I don't want to give up. I do try to be creative and thoughtful rather than extravagant.

    A part-time job would help lots, but because of my commitment to my cousin, I can't commit to a job. And opportunities around here are dismal. This area is full of retired people looking for part-time work, and there just isn't much available.

    My cousin suggested I might do some census work when that gets going. I also might look at temp work. We'll see.

    Thanks for your good wishes.

Leave a Reply

(Note: If you were logged in, we could automatically fill in these fields for you.)
Will not be published.

* Please spell out the number 4.  [ Why? ]

vB Code: You can use these tags: [b] [i] [u] [url] [email]