Archive for January, 2011
About four years ago, in the midst of the real estate boom, I was advising a friend on her finances as we sat in my office one afternoon. She’s a little older than I am and retired. That’s her dream. No more work.
The problem is she doesn’t have enough money to sustain her life style through decades of retirement.
I said to her, “You need to sell your house and move into something smaller. Then invest the extra to generate income. This will reduce your living expenses as well. Help you get your cash flow in balance.”
She answered, “But this is my dream home. It’s what I’ve always wanted. I just couldn’t sell it.”
“But you’re going to run out of money before you run out of retirement,” I replied. “You’ve got to change something.” Read More→
The mice had the advantage of hiding under the star jasmine ground cover. She could hear them scurrying and occasionally see a rustle of leaves. But they were well hidden.
She could have listened and then wildly pounced into the bushes hoping to get lucky. That’s a low percentage tactic. That would be the strategy of our other three worthless cats.
No she’s a country cat. She appeared on our back deck one day with her mother and three siblings as strays. They weren’t feral but certainly had learned to survive. So now those instincts were in play.
She crouched low. Freezing in place then slowly crawling forward. Pausing to listen. Inching forward again. Her head turning ever so slightly. Her ears turning back and forth tuning in the faint rustling sounds of the mice. Read More→
These last few months have been financially draining. Because of a bad manager we had to do extensive repairs on some apartments. This came on top of just recovering from 2009 which was challenging in the financial services industry to say the least.
At this time of year we do our year end charitable giving. Like many others we try to give out around ten percent. We feel it’s a way to give back to God for all he’s given to us. And it feels good to share with others who have far less.
But this year it’s a struggle. The outflow has come since August so we’ve no time to make it up. So I’ve been feeling under pressure about how to give our normal level when the cash just isn’t there.
The night of Thanksgiving I was in bed drifting off to sleep. Jennifer was out in the kitchen finishing up some dishes. I had reached my expiration when my brain closes up shop at which point I become less than helpful.
As I drifted off, on this cold fall night, I thought about the warmth and comfort of our snug bed. We had finished eating more than enough and spent the day with family. I was thankful.
Yet, I thought about those who that night were going to bed hungry, afraid and cold sleeping under make-shift shelters. Read More→