Friday, December 17, 2004

It's really hard this time of the year to justify and maintain any kind of fiscal restraint. Fortunately, 98% of my unreasonable purchases have been in my mind only. Is this progress?

I am dreaming of ski vacations. I was thinking Wintergreen, but what the heck! Let's go all out and try Park City or Switzerland. I am also dreaming of beach vacations on white sand and sleeping on the shore so I can hear the waves. Or maybe going to that private island in "The Thomas Crown Affair." Something like that.

What I am doing is figuring out the most economical way to repair my bathrooom walls and replace the worn out tub.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

It's increasingly difficult to justify no vacation. I mean, spending nothing on vacation one year to spend it the next on something truly great. I keep coming up with projects to spend money on, defeating the purpose of no vacation. I also keep finding must do vacations everywhere I go. Like at National Geographic. Wow! Dream tours deluxe!

My sewer pipe just had to be replaced. Fortunately I got mad enough to get three quotes. Underground Services First gave me a great deal and were efficient and nice to boot. A miracle. So that's money I spent that I would rather have not. The good news: I was able to finance with an equity line. The bad news: more debt. In the land of vacations it's either get out of debt or have a vacation. There's nothing in between. Sure, I get paid for time off—three weeks this year. But that's the only part of vacation that's paid for.

Very tempting is to stay home and do home improvement all year. The list is growing. There's the needs: new bathroom walls (old studs are rotted by past leaks from previous owners), floor coverings (removed old, stained, extremely smelly rug and pad from whole house to reveal vinyl asbestos tile that broke up where the floor meets the wall), replace ceiling fan in second bedroom, finish painting and decorating. Then there's the extras: replace medicine cabinet in bathroom, new faucets in kitchen and bathroom, fancy mini-fridge from U-line, create foyer, get all new furniture (doesn't seem like so much when I write it down).