About Me

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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Seven hours, my friends.

I went to bed at 10:30 and awoke when my alarm would have gone off, had this been a work day. And I feel really good. There's some residual swelling in my left ankle, but I think if I spend 20 minutes with my legs up the wall most of that will go away. I will be driving a lot. So anything I can do to make my legs happy is time well spent.

I played in my spreadsheet last night. Yesterday was a non-payday Friday. So the numbers didn't change any. But sometimes, in the spirit of counting my blessings, it is good for me to study how those numbers have changed since the first of the year, and to ponder how they've changed over the past decade and a half.

Fifteen years ago I was freshly divorced from the children's father. My good credit was history. I had no bad credit, thankfully, but it had been 25 years since I was a young woman with my first good(ish) job and my first car payments. I had no credit at all.

Fourteen years ago I went to work for this company, in another department. I set up a 401K and stretched to make the $75 a month contribution which would maximize the company match. Over time I have increased my contributions, to the point that last year I was putting in 10% of my gross into either a regular 401K or a Roth. I did not adjust my contribution when I got my raise this year, because I felt it was crucial to eliminate all debt other than the mortgage. When that is accomplished I will tweak those numbers accordingly.

I have gone from no credit to momentarily bad credit* to acceptable credit. If you take the value of the house (which appraised much higher than I thought it would) and the value of my 401K's and the fluctuating balances in my bank accounts, I am officially, astonishingly, solvent.

Heaven gets the glory. These are tithing blessings. By first-world standards I am a woman of modest means. My cash flow sometimes doesn't. But I can look back and see the progress and witness Heaven's fingerprints all over it.

*If the other parental unit is out of work and the child support dries up, do not, I repeat DO NOT, put a year's worth of child support, no matter how little that might be, on plastic. That piece of financial insanity finally dropped off my credit report earlier this year.

Today we celebrate Bittiest's fourth birthday. I will knit. Maybe even cook a few things. Nap. And try to bring a little more order to my world. But for now it's time to load some of those holiday M&M's into Chutzpah's red wagon and give thanks that that was not a budget buster. Because there was a time when it would have been.

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