Miscellaneous, Oct. 2013

Yikes!  I haven’t been posting!  We got back from Ohio and just got caught up in day-to-day things so we’ve been keeping it local.  I’m working on a post about RTW planning but that won’t be ready for a while.  This is my favorite time of year, especially with Halloween this week, so we have been busy with that and our homeschool routine.  It seems when I’m not at work, I am shuttling the kids, waiting while they are at a class or playgroup, cleaning/shopping/cooking/etc, and just not writing.  We also planned and cancelled a trip to the cabin – bummer.  We’ll try again in a few weeks.  Here are a few headlines for now.

Local trips

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PUPPIES: I have always felt guilty about it but I refuse to get a puppy or dog.  I didn’t grow up with dogs and I don’t have much energy for another creature to take care of (though we do have guinea pigs, a cat, and a turtle).  Thus, I feel compelled to visit puppies with the kids whenever we get the chance.  When a co-worker mentioned her dog having 4 puppies, even though she lives about 45 minutes from me, I planned to go.  We headed out on a sunny Friday, and even hit a nearby park (pics above) that day.

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These were about 2-week old pitbull/bulldog puppies if I understood correctly.  we brought 2 kid friends, so it was me, 6 kids, my excellent co-worker, her boyfriend, and a total of 7 dogs!  Guilt assuaged, for that day at least.

BIKING: The twins and I went biking on an errand one sunny day and stopped by a college campus on the way.  They checked out some art students and took in the city sights.

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TIME TRAVEL: Our house is about 120 years old and always needs something.  The latest was a ditch over 5′ deep dug by Mr. Fantastic to replace a sewage pipe.  When he removed the old pipe, we saw the corrosion of cast iron from about 50 years of, well, sewage.  We mused on all the years the pipe had been in use.  It would have been great to find a time capsule from when the pipe was new, so Fiercely and a friend made a one out of PVC to bury when the ditch got refilled.  We took pictures to enclose along with the Skittles box, a flip phone the kids found on the street once, Pokemon cards, letters to the future, and other odds and ends.  Here’s hoping the ditch diggers of circa 2063 enjoy looking at the past!

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The Budget

I continue to take pride in eschewing my credit card.  Every time I pay for something in cash, I feel like I am sticking it to The Man!!!!  It’s great!!  Of course out-of-budget things come up, but in general I really like this system.  I’ve been taking out a set amount of cash every week for gas + groceries (big), my personal spending (tiny), and ‘household’.  That last category is a bit of a slush fund and we don’t always use it.  Also, the husband is still adjusting and uses his credit card for a number of things (his business, home repairs) that fluctuate and are difficult to budget for.

We are also trying to refinance the house and get a better interest rate.  It would increase our mortgage payment but lower our monthly bills.  It would also pay off the onerous credit card.  And there’s the matter of getting money for RTW of course.  We have to get the house appraised so Mr Fantastic is trying to finish some projects, a major one being replacing the sewage line.  I’m just cleaning and crossing my fingers.

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