Tag Archives: money

Say it isn’t so.

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I dealt with the toilet paper shortage.

I survived the run on flour.

But the newest Covid related tragedy might just tip me over the edge.

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Yes, boys and girls…. our fettuccini Alfredo is about to put a bigger dent in our wallets.

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God damn you Corona virus! Isn’t it enough you’ve made a trip to the hardware store seem like a big day out?

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Leave my cheese alone!

*She says as she allots more money in the budget. Who needs those pesky prescriptions anyway?*

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Products no one needs.

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Correct me if I’m wrong…

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But that has got to be the worst product ever invented. If you want to see me in a homicidal rage? Watch me chase a screaming alarm clock down the hall with a baseball bat at 4:00am.

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Do I need to wrap myself in a life size tortilla?

No. I really don’t.

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A foot hammock.

Because those pillowed neck rolls people wear on airplanes aren’t ridiculous enough.

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Why in the world would I pay for an implement that gives me the hairdo I spend all morning trying to get rid of?

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Read my lips…

I neither have an inner mermaid, nor do I need to find one.

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This.

Because the government doesn’t eat enough of our money as it is.

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Ka-Ching!!

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That’s the sound my checkbook made when we drove down to the design studio to purchase the custom made bar chairs my husband had his heart set on.

We met the two very pleasant Lithuanian immigrants who own the business and found they do interesting work.

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Their furniture is starting to catch on and has been written up in numerous magazines.

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Maine restaurants and businesses have contracted large orders….

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And its only thanks to Covid that they considered a small order like ours.

These are the 30 inch swivel pub chairs my husband fell in love with.

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Made from 120 year old reclaimed barn boards and strong enough to seat an African elephant, they’re remarkably comfortable as well.

The designers explained it would take 6 weeks to make our 6 chairs because they just had to lay off most of their people due to the virus. A huge order from L.L. Bean had been cancelled, which while bad news for them… was great news for us.

They were even kind enough to let us take a sample chair home for a test run.

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We sidled it up next to the (still unfinished since the contractor seems to have taken a powder) bar and the height was perfect.

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I’m hoping to match the front facing of the bar to one of the medium shades on the chair.

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If the builder ever decides to return.

A few days later when we brought the chair back, I decided I needed some matching shelves for my liquor bottles.

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They’ll look like these. The wood will match the chairs… which pleases me, and the brackets will be made from old railroad spikes… which pleases the husband.

Two shelves on either side of the bar window for a total of four. What the hell. If you’re going to do it, do it right.

Ka-Ching!

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The more things change…

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While the husband was busy Swiss cheesing his barn walls, I rummaged through the house looking for something my mother had given me many moons ago.

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It’s an odd little self published booklet from 1938 that was left to her by an old extremely wealthy boyfriend.

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To say it’s a scathing rebuke of Franklin Delano Roosevelt is an understatement.

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It positively skewers him and his policies.

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It was put together but a bunch of old money fat cats…

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And could be the Facebook or Twitter of it’s day.

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The more things change…

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The more they remain the same.

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How many tables does one man need?

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After the Barn Mahal clean out… there was open space. Glorious, uncluttered open space. I knew it wouldn’t last, but I appreciated it all the same.

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And when I looked around? There was a table and chairs.

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Okay, we’re building a bar for that… but whatever.

The next day?

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There was another table and chairs.

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The day after that 3 more tables had migrated their way in. WTH? Is the husband planning on opening a cafe….

Which is exactly what I asked him during our inaugural beer.

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No, it wasn’t our first time on the nectar of the gods merry go round, but it was the first time we drank inside the barn, seated at a table, with heat.

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I never did get an answer to my why do you need 5 fricking tables question… but we did manage to get that stupid mobility scooter we wasted $850 on last year up and running again.

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We purchased it second hand for his brother, who swore he needed it… until we gave it to him free of charge, when he decided he didn’t want it after all. 😡

We tried selling it last year but didn’t have any luck. Now the husband wants it gone so I’m going to list it again… for half what we paid, damn it…. and see what happens.

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Note to self? It’s probably not a good idea to drink beer for hours and then fully charge a scooter.

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The following day I figured if I couldn’t beat the too many tables paradigm, I’d join it… and hung a little something of my own for flavor.

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Perfect!

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And on the 3,037th day….

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There was heat.

Yes, that’s really how long we’ve been working on the big barn. Saying we don’t like to rush things is a bit of an understatement.

But last week, this happened:

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The son of our soon to be ex friends came over to install a heat pump. It’s his business, and while I’m still cursing our rat bastard friends for giving us the free pool table that’s cost us thousands… their son is a great guy.

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Of course he might have been cursing them as well because drilling a hole through a building my husband built isn’t as easy as it should be.

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What should have taken mere minutes turned into a bit of an ordeal. And when that happens…

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You grab a hammer.

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After the hole was finally cut, it was just a matter of mounting the unit.

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With my husband… the man who has never lined up anything perfectly straight in his life…. standing back and saying, nope. It needs to go up a little on the left.

I believe my jaw dropped open at that point.

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Outside, the electrician connected power to the box… next to all the scrap wood that had to be hauled from under the barn to run the cable.

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And the rest of the crew installed the compressor thingamagig.

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Which is ugly as all get out but thankfully is on the one barn wall we can’t see from our house.

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I was glad to see they used great stuff. Because I’m sure awful stuff is more readily available, not to mention cheaper.

So…

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The big barn now has a heat pump. And future bar patrons can be assured of proper ambient drinking temperature.

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Cost of that free pool table so far?

$7,764. And no, he’s not done yet. The open stairwell still needs to be sealed off to prevent heat loss.

Free.

It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

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Grill shopping.

 

The unthinkable happened last week.

Our beloved… and only 3 years old damn it… Weber grill died. Not wanting to spend a summer without one, we immediately went hunting for it’s replacement.

I wanted a small one without a side burner, so naturally all the husband looked at were large ones with side burners.

Ah, marriage.

 

 

Have you been grill shopping lately?

Holy crap!

I’ve paid less for cars.

 

 

Here’s the husband taking one for a test drive.

Literally driving it…. he spun it around a corner and had it up on 2 wheels.

Because Christ, at over a thousand dollars? That bastard better taxi us to the pub on its day off.

I found one I wanted.

Really wanted.

 

 

It came with wine!

But no. The husband dragged me to 5 other stores and ended up choosing one from Tractor Supply.

 

 

Large?

 

 

Oh yeah.

 

 

Much larger than we need, but it has stainless steel grates and radiant embers.

What the hell are radiant embers?

I have no idea….

But I bought some lovely filets and we’re going to find out tonight.

 

Day 8…. A goose traffic jam, southern food, an overpriced theme park, and the family you choose for yourself.

 

Before I regale you with yet another day of our vacation adventures….. a little personal history.

In case you hadn’t guessed? The husband and I don’t have any children. It was a lifestyle choice we made many years ago and haven’t had cause to regret it. But back in the early 90’s we took a neighbor’s child under our wing when her single mother was having a hard time.

 

Des & Fred, ironing

 

She was the child we never had….

 

Des & a few lobsters

 

We helped raise her…..

 

Fred & Des..Forestry

 

 

And since she had no contact with her real father, my husband took over the role.

 

Attitude adjustment!!

 

Attitude adjustments et al.

 

nice Xmas shot

 

She wasn’t ours biologically…..

 

Me, Fred & Des, Lakewood

 

But she will always be the child of our hearts.

 

Fred & Des - graduation

 

We’ve watched her grow into a beautiful young woman…

 

Me, Fred & Des

 

And now she’s happily married…..

 

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With a child of her own….

 

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And we feel like we have a grandchild as well. They still live in North Carolina so whenever we’re near…. we get together. She loves that we have a timeshare and enjoys staying with us at the various resorts. On Day 8 of this trip? She and her daughter joined us for the weekend before Christmas.

When they arrived? A goose traffic jam…

 

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I love me some goosers… so pardon the ridiculous tone of voice I use in the video.

As well as me cursing out the idiot who was honking their horn at those sweet little waddlers.

 

 

After their 4 1/2 hour trip, Destiny and Gracie were hungry so we took them to that great seafood place we’d found… Fat Tuna.

 

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We stuffed ourselves silly with hushpuppies, cornbread and shrimp and grits….

 

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While the husband opted for a seafood pasta.

 

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This was in anticipation of where we would be spending the afternoon and evening… because when you have a 7 year old? Sitting around chatting with a cocktail isn’t going to cut it.

So the husband and I did what we never… ever!… do.

We went to a theme park.

And it was just as awful as I knew it would be.

 

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We stood in a long line to board the shuttle.

 

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We crammed onto the shuttle like sardines.

 

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We waited on long lines to buy overpriced tickets…. and not even a funny spare tire cover could make up for what we were about to experience.

 

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(I hope he was talking about the jeep and not his wife.

I really do.)

But yes…. the husband and I shelled out $240 frickin’ dollars to visit Christmas Town at Busch Gardens.

 

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No senior discount, no military discount, no under 12 discount.

Suck it Santa!

Did I mention it was also $20 to leave our car in the north 40,  somewhere south of bumblef*ck Egypt   parking lot?

 

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$260 just to walk in.

Kill me now.

 

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But we were there with people we loved…

 

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And my husband… who never wants to pose for photographs?

 

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Was posing all over the place…. and smiling.

Now that’s a true Christmas miracle!

Scrambling…

 

 

 

No, not eggs.

Vacations.

You see, for the entire year my husband has been saying he’s going to retire in December. He also forbade me to book any vacations because he works for the Federal Government and can sell back his leave when he goes.

(He gets 5 weeks off every year, so the payout can be substantial.)

 

 

Except now that the day is rapidly approaching, he decided he’s going to work a little longer.

Yes, his reasoning is sound.

 

  1. The old boss he hated has left and been replaced with a laid back, drama free manager.
  2. Starting next year, they’re going to push teleworking from home 2-3 days a week…. and since he already works four 10 hour days, it will probably be a 1 day a week commute.
  3. Good benefits.
  4. Good pay.
  5. The ability to dump more in our TSP (Thrift Savings Plan, the government’s answer to a company matching IRA).

 

I get it.

I do…

But our retirement plan was to travel, and I’d like him to be semi-mobile and breathing without a respirator when we do. (Hauling a corpse in and out of resort elevators is such a drag.)

 

Zombie-nuts

 

But back to the scrambling….

It’s almost the end of the year and I don’t have much time to plan and book 5 weeks worth of vacations before time runs out. It’s not easy with the holidays right around the corner. We have a timeshare on a points system and can go anywhere, but since he’s waited so long to request time off, he can’t get more than a week at a time…. which leaves out long distance trips. I hate spending 2 days flying back and forth for only 4 days on site. With the price of tickets these days, it’s not worth it.

So thanks to WordPress’s magic scheduling ability, as you read this… we are currently returning from a week at a ski resort in the western mountains of Maine.

 

 

That’s right Lionel, I haven’t been here for a week and you didn’t even miss me.

God bless technology.

Did we ski? Hell no, it’s too early for that… even in Maine. But it’s a beautiful area and I’m sure we explored. And drank. And took pictures.

The deluge of photos will begin shortly….

 

not again

 

You’ve been warned.

 

It has clearly been a loooong time.

 

Waiting for the husband the other day….. (I swear, that man will talk to a rock)  I sat aimlessly,  playing with my phone.

 

 

Scoped Apple news, saw an article on concerts in Las Vegas and thought, we have timeshare resorts there…. I’ll take a look.

Lady Gaga in October?

That could be fun.

Or not…

 

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I believe my jaw literally dropped open.

Okay, I get it.

I’m old.

 

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My concert going days ended with the Grateful Dead and CSN. Back when a record was an actual vinyl record… (look it up kids, V- I- N- Y- L)

But mother of god!

$8,097 for 2 tickets?

For that price I’ll want Gaga to rip some of that meat off her dress, cook me dinner and do the dishes when she finishes singing.

 

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Who the hell can afford that?

Again… I know, I’m old.  55,  that’s practically dead.

And the last ticket price I paid was probably $75.

But damn.

You shouldn’t have to mortgage your house to see a show.