clouds near home

clouds August 25 2010

The photo is of some wonderful August thunderheads about a week ago. As seen from in front of my house in my little cookie-cutter “manufactured home” neighborhood. We get awesome thunderheads here in late August.

I changed the pre- and post-filters on the RO system beneath the sink. I’d bought the filters some time ago. So far the PPM isn’t very impressive. I’ll give it some time and let some more water go. The old filters were producing ~74 PPM water. I need to get to Home Depot and buy some more potassium chloride for the whole-house filter in the garage. I really like having clean water in the house, and not lugging gallons of water home in plastic bottles.

And, as it turned out, that bottled water wasn’t all that clean.

The water filter was a big improvement to the house. As were the double-glazed windows, and the dual ceramic-metal film on the windows, and the solar panels on the roof, and the replacement external air conditioner and the internal blower/furnace component.

Another thing I added to the house was the “Wood Haven” wood rack. I wish that I had enough money to fill it again. I love having firewood on hand. True riches. Up there with a pantry full of good soup.

The check arrived that I use to subsist and I deposited that. $2500. The house payment is $1970. So you do the math. Not a lot of money left over, eh? Diane will probably get around to sending a child support check, which began at about $1300 a month and is now down to $700.

At least the mortgage payment is covered for another month.

I have one of my collection of whole chickens from the deep freeze thawed in the kitchen, waiting to be roasted later this afternoon. That will be dinner.

The next thing on the list of thing to do without is pay television. I like to watch football and Cassidy watches various Disney Channel shows. I can get an over-the-air antenna and see most football games, but Cassidy will have to make do with whatever shows we can see on the Internet.

Not looking forward to that. I want to keep things “normal” for the kids.

Health insurance for me, savings, various things we used to be able to afford which are now gone. Firewood. Olive oil. Money is obviously very tight. I’m looking at cashing in my life insurance policy which ought to pay down the credit card debt quite a bit, but will not get rid of it.

At the time, it seemed like no problem to pay Diane off all the money she wanted for the house, the house payment wasn’t that big a deal. I did not anticipate our industrial tenant planning on leaving (will they?) next year. Nor the losses in my investments. I remember Diane and our stockbroker telling me not to buy Apple stock @ $5 a share. $10K of Apple stock would have been worth over half a million dollars. Sigh. Don’t look back.

I have four bottles of Trader Joe’s Two Buck Chuck cab left. Planning on drinking one or two of those tonight watching the Chargers game which begins at seven o’clock. I’m glad that football season is about to begin. I like the distraction. Even if it is really just an excuse to nap on the couch all day on Sunday.

Also considering selling the truck. Buying another, smaller vehicle, a used one. Either that or buying a car with 0% interest. That would mean a monthly payment, however. Not too excited about that idea.

Go get Cassidy in about twenty minutes. Find a parking spot. Or be smarter and wait until 3:15 when her school actually gets out and then drive off to get her. By the time she makes her way to the street where I pick her up the other traffic should have already gone. I’d rather be there when she gets out.

My brain is still hurting from all the information us parents were exposed to last night. Middle school is a lot of work. I am not envious of her attending middle school.

I feel like I’ve got a cold or something. I’m going to go run some saline solution through my sinuses with my neti pot. Cassidy has had a cough for about a week. I wonder if Diane is still paying for health insurance for the kids? I’m not in a hurry to take either of them to the doctor. But Cassidy’s cough is worrying me.

Marvelous, e-mail from AT&T: my bill due on the 25th is $228.45. So that leaves about $300. Of course, the minimum credit card payment is over $300. So that could be a problem. Definitely time to consider cashing in my life insurance policy. And/or selling the truck and finding another, cheaper, ride. What else can I sell from the household? The saxophone? The trumpet? I’d love to see the trumpet go. Do we own anything else of value?

Not great news. But not a surprise.


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