Wednesday, July 13, 2005


There was a reason the whole rant about Thing One and Thing Two came up in my last post.

I was going to talk about a different secret. See, I'm all about revealing inappropriate information to the internet these days. First, the rash! Next, the in-laws! Now . . . money! Whee!

So, awhile back I told you some secrets. This is about the last one I told. The one down there at the bottom of the post.

Right, we were out of money. To be honest, my feelings about this when it happened were maybe not what you'd expect. I was worried, yes, but I also felt proud. Proud that it had taken nearly two years to run out of money. To me, living in Southern California, near the beach, on one income, comfortably for two years without going into debt was a pretty accomplished thing. Honestly, I'd expected to run out of money much sooner. Also, I knew when I posted that we'd run out of cash two things: my husband was getting paid that Friday, and my mom was coming to town. So even if I had to charge groceries that week, I knew relief was in sight.

And it was. Lance got paid, my mom bought us some groceries, things were okay again. Not great, because we didn't have a cushion in our savings anymore, but I thought we could make it okay 'till the next paycheck. Now, I know you are not supposed to live paycheck to paycheck, but that's pretty much what I've done my whole life, so I'm used to it. I can't understand why we were living paycheck to paycheck when we had two incomes and no kids, but let's just leave that shitcan closed tight.

So back to living paycheck to paycheck. The thing with doing this while having kids is that you have all these looming costs that you know you should be saving for. Not the fancy new boots, like when you were single, but things like education for your kids. Because, in case you didn't know, in Los Angeles, you pay $850,000 for a shitty tiny old house behind an airport, and you still get the worst school district in the country. And private school starts at $15,000/ year, for first grade. So living paycheck to paycheck is doable, but not advisable, because eventually, even your 1 year old (God willing) will be heading out to kindergarten.

A week or so ago, out of the blue, we got a check from my in-laws. It was a distribution, sent to all the grandchildren, of my grandfather-in-law's estate. He passed away over a year ago, and we had no idea this was coming. It is not an extraordinary amount of money, but enough to pay off our credit cards (we didn't have much debt) and put a little into the funds we have for the kids' college. Enough to make living paycheck to paycheck seem not so scary. Enough to make me stop hyper-ventilating every time I have to purchase another $15 package of diapers.

While I was composing this blog post in my mind, I started thinking about my father-in-law, and wondering if it felt difficult writing the same check to Thing One and Thing Two, considering how they've been acting lately. And that's how I came to vent in my last post.

Which I probably shouldn't have done. Nor should I have written this one.

I'm just glad my husband doesn't read my blog.

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