I have been missing in action for a couple of months now. The attached picture is a shot of one of my gardens. Look at the weedy mess. Messy garden and messy money. I have been too busy to tend to it.
My heart and mind have been focused on other things and to be honest it has been nice to take a break from money thoughts. When things do pop into my head I try to capture them so that I can write about them at some point. Here is what I have been thinking about and what I plan to cover in the coming weeks. (Note to self – try to remember to come back and link to this post.
1. Personal finance blogging.
I started this blog for a number of reasons. I needed an outlet to sort through my thoughts about money and finance. Plus, the people around me are tired of hearing about how I saved money by not turning on the air conditioning or air drying my laundry.
Turns out that “Personal Finance Blogs” are a thing and there is giant community built around PF blogging. I had no idea. (D-oh!) I am not sure where I fit. Sometimes I feel like the girl standing on the edge of the playground watching the other kids play hopscotch and I am kicking some pebbles around because I don’t know how to ask if I can play too.
2. Money stress.
Why am I so stressed about money? We have enough. We can pay the bills, always have food to eat and there are no bill collectors calling me. What I do know:
Prices are rising faster than our salaries.
The financial world is changing – what worked for my parents, might not work for me. I worry about what the aging boomers will mean for us. I worry that my kids will not be able to find meaningful work that supports them. I worry about a great depression. I worry and I worry…… can I rise above?
3. Financial schadenfreude.
I am watching some “acquaintances” blow themselves up financially. These people live a “keeping up with the Joneses” life. It is like watching a train wreck in slow motion and a bit of sweet poetic justice. Am I a bad person for finding the whole situation amusing? Do I need to worry about karma? Stay tuned for As the Credit Churns…
4. Net worth.
I track my net worth and update it on a regular basis. Should I post and track it here? For reasons I don’t totally understand I don’t feel comfortable posting it. J. Money has posted the Ultimate List of Blogger Net Worth. When I found the list I wanted to play along but I have found myself watching from the sidelines. (See: Item 1 above.) Here’s a spoiler — My (family) net worth is less than 1 million.
5. The monkey portfolio.
Back in November I asked my kids to pick 10 stocks for a virtual portfolio. Could they pick winners? Did they outperform the pros? Are they paper trading dynamos? Stay tuned for an update at the end of the month.
I have finished tallying up the Bill/Utilities and the shopping categories. One of these categories decreased by 27% and one increased by 36%, can you guess which one?
Not the most conservative financial move but I couldn’t resist. This is a tale of two companies. The analyst kept yelling, “Buy, buy, buy!” I kept asking myself, “Why, why, why!” Sometimes the analysts are wrong.
8. A dream retirement?
My parents retired at 55 and they are enjoying their retirement immensely. I am suffering from retirement envy. At Christmas time I asked my Dad to count the number of countries they have visited since they retired. We stopped counting at 17. When they shared their retirement plans with friends and family, almost everyone told them they were crazy. Crazy or clever, you decide.
9. When can I retire?
I don’t know but I am going to figure it out.
Life is returning to normal and I look forward to posting again. Thanks for reading!