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Various money things & life updates

November 2nd, 2016 at 09:52 am

Feels like a long time since I posted ... let's see if I can remember some of the stuff that's happened.

Our CSA farm invited members to a talk; turns out they've had a disastrous year due mainly to the overly rainy summer we had. Lost lots of crops to rot and disease and therefore made far less money than expected. They asked members to help out in various ways, and one of them was to purchase three years of shares now. That one made the most sense because we have no intention of quitting our farm, so we did it.

I already had the money saved up for the 2017 share but not 2018 or 2019. So for now we're floating that money. We typically have $2K-$10K of wiggle room in the checking account at any given time, so I don't think it'll be a problem floating $1575 until such time as we can make up for it in the budget. (Probably will pay off before the money comes up in our 2017 and 2018 budgets, but if not, I think we could easily float it that long.)

I got a voicemail from a farm staffer thanking me for the advance subscription and saying we were the only people at that particular event who signed up. Frown They sent out a follow-up email and she did say that others are starting to sign up too. She also said if they don't manage to keep afloat for next season, they will refund our money. Frown

We love our farmer and his devotion to the land, so hopefully other members will step up. They need $150K to make the changes they think will protect the farm from climate-change effects in the future.


Halloween was a bit of a budget buster, with costumes, candy, pumpkins, and Lyft rides to and from a party. So worth it though! October was a very low-income month for AS; she pulled in $1865 and only a third of that goes to shared spending. So I'm actually pretty happy with the fact that our shared spending is only $140 in the red right now.

My sister is coming for a visit this weekend, and this time she's bringing her foodie husband, so we expect to eat out at least 4 meals. I'm sure they'll pick up the tab on a couple of them, but we'll still go farther in the hole unless AS receives some checks soon. It'll all work itself out!

We have one contractor coming out to give a quote on the upstairs bathroom next Friday and a text message in to our regular contractor, so hopefully we can get him in soon. Our preference would be to work with him because he's done such an amazing job on all jobs so far, but we'll take cost and other things into consideration when making the decision. We have $5350 saved and know we'll likely need a lot more than that, but we just need to find out how MUCH more so we can have a goal to shoot for.

We're still waffling about whether to appraise for a refinance of the US duplex. I've got my eye on a similar listing -- a duplex right across the street from us with fewer bedrooms/square feet that's listed for $515K. It just went on the market, so who knows what it will actually go for, but if it does go for over $500K, the refi just might be doable.

I've also found a very comparable flat to NT's UK property that's listed at 215,000 pounds (about $270K). We currently value his flat at 180K pounds, so that's very interesting if it actually sells for that amount. It's been on the market for 4 months and they've dropped the price twice, so we'll see if it ever sells and where the sale price lands.

I started NaNoWriMo last night! I did 1,580 words, which is less than I like to do per day (I shoot for 2,000 per day so I can have a few free days in the month and/or finish early), but I spent most of the day working on my outline, so I was kind of burnt out by the time I was ready to start writing it. I'm not totally happy with the plot I came up with but think I'll find it entertaining enough to keep going through the month. It's mostly a straight-up action novel and I didn't come up with many twists and turns, so I don't think the end result will be very commercial. I'll just look at this year's NaNo as a chance to practice my fiction writing skills. I'll try to write the heck out of my paper-thin plot! Big Grin

What else? Oh, lots of kid updates! AA has finally graduated from preschool-level swim class and is SO close to being able to swim on her own. She's running for 1st-grade class president and the "primary" is today, so wish her luck! She wrote and gave a speech to her class; it was 3 sentences long. Smile 4-year-old SL has suddenly learned to read! She has trouble sounding out words she doesn't know, but she knows a ton of words on sight, so she can get quite far in reading a new book. She's about where AA was in early-mid kindergarten, so she's about a year ahead of her. But AA was more of a sounder-outer so could figure out more unknown words. They just learn and process information very differently. Both smart as whips though! AA is going to take the gifted tests soon at school, so we'll see if she qualifies for whatever gifted program is available. SL I'm pretty sure will go in the gifted program right away.

Other family news: Today is the 10-year anniversary of NT arriving in the United States!

3 Responses to “Various money things & life updates”

  1. Carol Says:

    Best of luck to AA in her election!

  2. livingalmostlarge Says:

    Congratulations! It's been 10 years already.

  3. frugaltexan75 Says:

    I hope things work out with your CSA.

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