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Please don't remind me that I'm poor; I'm having too much fun pretending I'm simply "living green" like everyone else these days.


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Neglected house

Now what was I talking about?  Oh yes, about my journey back to a simpler life. 

I have a three bedroom house.  As I look around I can see quilting and crafting stuff in every room including the kitchen and my own bedroom.  Yet, there is not one single place where anyone can sit to visit.  Not one place where grand kids could spend a weekend with me getting to know me.   This is just one room (before I cleaned it up a bit) showing the accumulation of stuff.  Do you see any place for a visitor to sit?  Neither do I.  That's the point.  What good is all the STUFF if it doesn't allow me to have a life.   Everything happened gradually, over time.  Some things happened over years of time.

I bought food.  Far more food than only one person needs.  I convinced myself all of it was such a good bargain I couldn't pass it up.  Then one day my daughter told me.... Mom, you buy stuff but then you give it away.  So true!  I would get frustrated having so much food and no place to really store it.  I'd go on a frenzy gathering up items to give to her, her sisters, the neighbors, the food banks, or anyone who would take it.  I wasn't eating much of it myself because I was too busy quilting to cook.  Many days I would be so busy I'd forget to eat until supper time.  Super was often a peanut butter sandwich, a bowl of cereal, a delivered pizza or something just so I could keep on quilting 16 hours a day.  After a frenzy of clearing all the food out, I'd start buying more bargains.  

The crazy part is that I stopped shopping except for every four to six months.  I'd still find myself with tons of foods.  My odd food buying behavior has a lot to do with remembering how there were times in my life when I had less than $5 a week to feed us but we ate everyday.  I could take one loaf of bread, bought for 50 cents, add a few simple ingredients, to make three meals, a desert, and a bedtime snack from that one loaf.  That definitely was not healthy but kept us alive.

I got so good at finding discount bin stuff, that when I actually had quilting income money to spend on food, I couldn't resist buying as much as I could get.  The economic nose dive only re-enforced my desire to hoard food.  There was no one here to tell me to stop buying it and no one to help me eat it because by then I had an empty nest. 

I neglected my house.  Staying at the quilting machine all day, every day, I rarely went outside around my house.  I paid to have the grass cut so I saw no reason to be outside.  One day, several years ago, I can't remember for what reason, I took a really good look at my house and found things like this.  For heavens sake, how did that happen?  When?  It was termites that started the damage.  Weather made it worse. 

I had termite damage in the house too.  Sub floors had to be replaced.   Exterminator was contracted to kill the termites and a yearly maintenance plan started.  Well, by this time there's no money for fixing the outside.  The best estimate I got for fixing the outside was more than the value of the house.  I needed a handyman to patch it up and couldn't find anyone who does "honey do" jobs.  I wrote this onto my fix it someday list.  Thank goodness I've finally found a handyman willing to work within my budget.

To be continued.....

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