When I started this blog in January of 2010, I was getting ready to retire and I was terrified I'd run out of money before the end of my life. A friend suggested I write about my fear in hopes of getting it out of my system.
Five years later, I'm no longer afraid. But I am still not crazy about spending money that I haven't planned on. The Bag Lady mutters from time to time. Like last week.
We'd made plans to have our Tucson park model painted, including multiple paneled walls. The unit is 25 years old and somewhat dated. When Tammy, the painter, came over to talk colors, we discussed the popcorn ceiling. She hadn't planned to paint the ceiling, but she knew of someone who could remove the popcorn and paint it. She called Gus and he came over. He said he could paint the ceiling white for $400 or remove the popcorn and redo the ceiling and paint for $1200. I sighed. That popcorn will not be a selling point when it's time to move on, however many years down the road. So I said yes. The popcorn came down today and as I sit in my recliner and look up, it seems like our ceilings are higher by a couple of feet. Tomorrow the ceiling gets repainted. Wednesday the painters come to do the rest of the place. Gus the ceiling guy needs a check tomorrow and Tammy the painter will take my credit card at the end of the week for $955.
And then there's the floor in the bathroom. The contractor says there's a leak in the pipe behind the shower and water damage in the subfloor. (We heard dripping somewhere around Christmas time but couldn't find it). The best way to fix the damage is to take out the shower/tub unit, do the repairs on the pipe and the floor, and replace the old shower/tub with a new shower unit. So we spent last Wednesday afternoon at the showroom picking out the material for our bathroom. This is a park model, remember - a trailer. We have homeowner insurance, and the adjuster came out today to check the water damage. The insurance will pay some of the $3,700 bill.
Now, we have the money to pay for all these things. But I'd rather pay for what I want - like the paint - than what we need - like a new bathroom shower. The Bag Lady's mind runs through the reduction in our savings and potential future disasters like the collapse of the stock market and the Washington State pension system and one or both of us requiring ten years of care in a nursing home. Kind of takes the fun out of looking at my no-popcorn ceiling.
My husband and I are going to the dentist in Nogales, Mexico this week. It will be our first trip down there and I am just a little bit nervous. I'll get an x-ray of a tooth that still bothers me after a root canal five years ago. The x-ray at home would be $180 but it's free in Nogales as a diagnostic tool. And the night guard for my teeth clenching will be much less than the $350 it would cost at home. Art is checking on implant procedures and prices. The savings on my dental work will pay for part of the no-popcorn ceiling. The savings on the implant might pay for the bathroom project.
The Bag Lady is good about rationalizing.