Tag Archives: growingup

Update on 2010 Goals

26 Aspirations and Goals for 2010 (from December)

1. Save 20% of my income for retirement

Update: I should be able to save more than 20% of my income this year if I can maintain my current job. At the beginning of this year I was making $60k per year. Then I was laid off. Now I’m making $100k per year. While I won’t make the full $100k this year (I had a few months of unemployment already), I should do ok in 2010. I’m revising my goal to save 30% of my income for retirement which includes maxing out my non-matched 401k and traditional IRA or Roth if my income qualifies. $16,500 in the 401k and $5,000 in the IRA… $22,500 total into retirement savings. But $22.5k is 30% of $75k. Should I save the rest of the 30% elsewhere for “retirement?” Really, that would mean saving in a taxable account until next year roles around and then putting that money towards retirement, especially if my income level tappers off in the coming years. I think this year is going to be unusually good for me, and I may not match this level again for a long time, if ever.

2. Save 10% of my income for other upcoming expenses

Updated goal: I’d like to save 25% or more of my income for upcoming expenses. I’m not sure where I’m going to save this money yet.
3. Increase my net worth to $60,000

Updated goal: increase my net worth to $100k
4. Study (a lot) for graduate school tests

fail. It’s so hard to think about grad school when I have a great job. But eventually I will want to seek out higher education. I don’t want to wait that long because I do want to have a family in the next 10 years.
5. Take the GMAT (and poss retake the GRE)
Well, I haven’t studied yet, so I haven’t set up dates to take either of these tests yet. Not sure I will in 2010 to be honest.

6. Apply to grad school(s) in fall 2010

I kind of feel like I should apply for fall 2010 but a lot depends how my current job goes.
7. Stop drinking alcohol (except on my birthday)

Well… I haven’t been drinking a lot of alcohol, but I have had a few drinks here and there. Working a high-paced job makes having a drink at the end of the day all the more rewarding and relaxing.
8. Go to the gym 3 times a week

Major fail on this one so far. I don’t know when I could go to the gym. I’m so busy. I’d like to go in the morning, but I just can’t motivate myself to get to the gym at 6am (with all the hardcore workout folks in the morning) so I could get in a workout before catching my train. At night, I just don’t have the energy. It would be best if I could take an hour or two mid-day and go to the gym, but I’m not sure that would be possible. And it also extends my work-day by one to two hours. I’d rather leave earlier and come home and relax. But I do need to work out, I’m not getting any younger and my body feels it.
9. Earn $10k in freelance income ($833 / month)

It looks like I will reach this goal. In addition to my main job I’m working on a freelance project that pays $2800 / month. It may not last all year, but 3 months of the project is $8400, and that makes me a lot closer to reaching my (previously seemingly unreachable) goal.
10. Eat 1300 calories per day

I have no idea how many calories I’m eating but I’m sure it’s more than 1300.
11. Drink 8 glasses of water per day

Unless you count the water in the beverages I get from the coffee machine at work, I’m not getting close to this goal.
12. Come up with sweet, non expensive things to do to make my boyfriend happy and do them

Hmm. I haven’t really come up with anything specific that is non expensive. I told him I’d buy him a bike after I get a full month’s paycheck at my new job. That’s not cheap. But it’s not that expensive given I didn’t really get him anything for his birthday this year and we then can both go biking together on the weekends, so we won’t have to pay for other things to entertain ourselves. And it will be healthy for us to go biking.
13. Go to 1 networking event per month and get up the courage to talk to people (which is going to be really hard since I’m giving up alcohol)

I haven’t really done this but maybe in the summer I will start going to more networking events.
14. Keep my room organized (easier said than done, hello ADD)

Well… it’s not that bad right now.

15. Write max 20 posts per month for blogging gig ($500 / month)

I hit the 20 posts last month. But now I’m cutting back on the blogging, I might quit the gig because of conflict of interest. Which is kind of a bummer, but it also is too tough to write blog posts in the morning now that I have to leave for work so early.
16. Start a saving fund for basic expenses for the second half of next year when I’ll likely be out of a job.

Funny… I’ve been there, done that, and employed again. I didn’t save enough to cover all my expenses really… I had to dip into my actual savings… but I was only unemployed for two months. Even without figuring out how to actually get paid unemployment, I managed ok.
17. Write hand written letters to the people in my life who I’ve lost contact with (sans Facebook status updates). I don’t really like many people, but it saddens me that I’ve lost contact with the few people in this world who I really admire and consider friends.

Ok, I have not done this at all. I did hand write a parking ticket payment earlier today. Does that count?

18. Take an antidepressant for a year and see if it actually helps my mood swings over time.

I took lithium for about 2 months and it made me feel really weird. Got kicked out of the study where I was getting the meds for free. So today I’m not on any drugs. I don’t feel like I need them right now, but maybe I do. I’m definitely feeling a bit more stable than I was a few months ago, but I’m just on a ramp up of novelty again.

19. Go to group therapy when possible and give what it takes to get the most out of it possible.

I went to a few months of group therapy and would like to go back. It was actually really helpful for understanding how to interact with people.

20. Make an effort to spend one day a month with each of my few friends.

I’m seeing people more often now that I work in the city. So I think I’m reaching this goal.
21. Invite my roommates to do something fun outside the house and try to build my relationship with them (I am really bad at socializing with my roommates, I like them but when I come home I usually just want to hide in my room. They are so close to each other it’s sometimes awkward for me to be there.)

Have not done this yet, unless you count a trip to Costco.

22. Read at least 4 fiction books and 4 personal finance / economics books and 4 books on interaction design

Hmm… I read a few chapters of one book so far. With my commute, I really should read more. I wonder if I’d read more if I had a Kindle…
23. Start saving for a car replacement

Oh, right, that’s where my additional savings should go this year. My car has 170k miles on it. I am not sure how much longer it will last.
24. Put my all into work, even though sometimes I don’t know how to. Be positive at work and supportive of the chaotic environment that is life at a startup. Try to bring a smile to the table always.

Well, I’m no longer working at a startup. Still, I need to remind myself to do this in any job I do. Any job is somewhat chaotic (unless you’re doing routine admin, and then it’s just boring.) I just need to remember to embrace the chaos and thrive on it.
25. Work on being a better listener and communicator. Learn from career counselor how to do that.
While I still have a lot to learn on the listening and communicating fronts, I have improved a lot and matured since my early 20s. I’m being very careful in how I communicate to people at the office and attempting to stay on everyone’s good side.
26. Try to take one day at a time and be happy for all I have and all the opportunities that are to come.
Minus the brief depression of being unemployed, I’ve done this pretty well. Right now I have to take everything one day at a time because there is a lot to do and I don’t have the time to really think ahead to the future.
So… that’s my quarterly update on my 2010 goals. For some, I’m doing really well. Others… like my health goals… are suffering a bit. There’s still plenty left of 2010, maybe I can manage to meet my 26 goals before the halfway point of the year.

HECC Approved Self Improvement Hippie Jargon

Every once in a while, I read a blog post that really makes me think. It doesn’t necessarily bring about any new ideas, but it challenges me to reprocess my thoughts from a new perspective. That’s what Get Rich Slowly’s guest post by Justin Martin did for them this morning.

Martin asks “Whats Your Why? The Importance of Find Meaning in Your Life.” He poses that “We need to have a vision of the future so compelling that we can see it even more clearly than the new toys in front of us.”

For the author, his why is to have enough passive income to travel for a year and return in a better financial situation than when he left. (That would be pretty sweet.) But I can’t say that’s my “why.”

He recommends a strategy to figure out your why in the form of 6 questions. I’m going to answer them below. Feel free to do the same on your blog.

  • Where have you been happiest?
  • What were you doing?
  • When you close your eyes and picture yourself incredibly happy, what do you see?
  • What makes you forget yourself for hours on end?
  • When do you feel best about yourself and your surroundings?
  • What do you talk about excitedly?

Where have you been happiest? / What were you doing?

I’ve been happiest when I’m entertaining people. The two times in my life that I’ve been happiest, albeit very different, have included a form of performance that others have responded positively to. One was when I was performing in The Vagina Monologues in college. All of the monologues in that show are great, but there’s one show stopper that requires the actor to perform a variety of orgasmic noises on stage. The monologue is about a lesbian dominatrix, to give you a better idea if you’re unfamiliar with the play. When I performed that monologue I had an audience howling in laughter. Not at me, but with me. And I felt sexy, smart, and funny, and was the happiest I had been in my life thus far.

The other time I was happiest was when I was in Israel (on my Birthright Israel trip) and at a hostel in Masada. I felt drawn to the staircase area, which had a window view of the beautiful dessert, and stood there and sang. Yea, I know, that’s weird. But my voice opened up like never before. And I knew some people would hear me, but I didn’t care. It was the middle of the day. There were few people around. Meanwhile, the acoustics in that staircase were brilliant. I sang for what must have been an hour, though I kind of got lost in time. For the first time in my life, I knew I sounded good. I didn’t sing any particular song, just scales and various patterns of notes, words. At some point a bunch of people came in and applauded for me, which broke me out of my spell. I thought if anything people would be annoyed by my singing, so it was quite incredible to be doing something I truly loved and be appreciated for that.

I also experience moments of happiness when other people respond to something I do in a positive way. It’s like feedback is my drug. (Makes sense that I work in customer service.)

When you close your eyes and picture yourself happy, what do you see?
I see my boyfriend by my side, smiling. I see myself being successful, respected, with enough money where I can spend a little frivolously while still knowing the value of money, and coming home to the man I love.

What makes you forget yourself for hours on end?
Singing. I just wish I had a better voice, I have no confidence in myself. I don’t know if singing in musicals makes me forget myself for hours. I used to think that’s what I want, but I think more spiritual singing is what I enjoy most. Not religious, but just making music without trying to sound like Bernadette Peters or Kristen Chenoweth, just letting my voice come out. That makes me happiest.

When do you feel best about yourself and your surroundings?
When I’m making people laugh, or getting some kind of positive feedback, laughter, applause, captive stares, whichever. I like when people appreciate my being silly. I’ve always been jealous of SNL performers (esp male ones) because they can get away with being such goofballs and do that for a living. I feel good when I’m in charge.

What do you talk about excitedly?
Anything that happens to be my passion in the moment. I admit, my passions are fleeting which can come off as flighty. There are a few things that I’ll always enjoy talking about… the meaning of life, personal finance, myself (hello, I’m a narcissist), sex, and anything that can make someone laugh.

Martin says the next step is to “create a vision that moves you to do things you’ve never done before, and you’ll find yourself in new, wonderful places. Once you have a Why, no matter how unlikely, the How becomes a lot easier and more enjoyable.”

I think also in these why questions, it’s important to ask yourself the opposite for clarity. What have you been least happiest doing? It’s sometimes hard for our “Why” to make sense financially. But what does make sense financially is to figure out what isn’t our “Why.” What is it that makes us miserable, and to avoid that. For instance, I used to think my “why” was to prove to other people that I was intelligent by semi traditional means. I worked for a while as a business reporter interviewing CEOs and VCs, and felt really important. However, the whole thing made me so nervous that I couldn’t spend any time enjoying it. I was miserable with the pressure of constantly introducing myself to people I don’t know, and asking the right questions, all while taking notes I could understand once I got home. Point being, it’s good to know your “why” to help guide you, but it’s equally as important to know what isn’t your why. That’s probably more important in the logistics of life.

Living Under My Parents Roof

I’m now on the East Coast, in my parent’s house, where I’m quickly reminded of what life would be like had I decided to move back home three years ago after graduating college. I’m pulling my hair out in reaction to my mother’s screeching voice and father’s bad temper, even though it is nice to stay in a large air-conditioned house and spend some time in my old bedroom.

The big benefit of staying here is the free food. Of course, if I lived here for real, the food would not be free as I’d have to contribute. Or at least I’d feel guilty if I wasn’t contributing and I had a job. I went out to a big dinner with the family last night in NYC and I ordered a nice fish dinner and wine. It was nice to not think about the bill.

But sans the financial benefits, I could not deal with living here. Within the 24+ hours of being in this house, my parents have already had about three fights. The more time I spend away from my mother, the more I realize that she really is crazy and annoying instead of just being a typical “mother annoying.” She’s nuts. She is obsessed with controlling everyone else’s life, down to what people are going to talk about. She even sometimes has a conversation FOR two other people. Meanwhile, my dad has absolutely no patience for her, and his hot temper is the first thing that comes out the second she says something stupid. Which is often. It’s not even what she says so much as how she says it. She doesn’t get that she constantly talks down to people because she just assumes everyone is thinking what she’s thinking and if they’re not then they’re being dumb. Crazy, real crazy. My poor dad, who isn’t innocent in the least, has worked his whole life to make money for her (and us, the kids) to spend and he’s, well, he’s been miserable for a long time. Sure, he has the house, a nice house at that. And two kids… we’re ok, I guess. But what else? Her?

Maybe someone could appreciate her. She’d do well with a boyfriend who wants to be controlled. There are guys out there who like that. Not my dad. He just snaps.

Heat Wave

These are the days when I really wish that I could stop being so frugal and purchase an air conditioner. Unlike back on the east coast, out here in Cali, few people think to buy an air conditioner. The weather doesn’t get that hot, usually, but right now the heat wave is… well…. really hot.

Even sitting in the shade with the lights off, the heat is like a thick fog which doesn’t move. Outside, there is sometimes a nice breeze, but my apartment seems to absorb heat and not let it go until winter comes along.

I’m looking forward to going home in a few weeks, back east, where air conditioning is plentiful. I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to justify air conditioning a home, especially a large home, given that it’s such a huge expense and many people in the world just learn to live without.

Meanwhile, I’m looking forward to a good summer thunderstorm back east. I hope I get to see one. Growing up in Jersey, I hated those violent thunder storms. But now I feel like I’m dealing with passive aggressive weather. It never comes out and hits you with something, it just burns for days. The east coast weather made more sense. It was hot and humid and eventually it had to storm, and so it went. We don’t get thunder storms out here. I miss the angry sky.

Is Moving Worth It?

As many of you know, my rent has gone up $400 in the past two years. That, alone, should be enough to get me out of this $1300 a month studio apartment.

But looking at the apartment rental listings on Craigslist, there really isn’t much for anything less. And at least this is utilities included for $1300 a month.

Going from $1050 a month to $1300 a month is definitely going to mess up my budget. I finally was making enough to do some serious saving (so that one day I could buy a house, god forbid) and this price increase basically makes that impossible – unless I manage to get a job that pays even better than my current job, which is probably possible, but I love my current job, and it pays pretty well, and I’m so happy working for this company, and I don’t want my rent price to control my career.

It’s possible I can find a place cheaper. There are studios occasionally on the market for anywhere from $900 to $1200 in the area. By area I mean anywhere from South San Francisco to Sunnyvale. The “SF Peninsula.” Silicon Valley. Where the majority of people who live here are engineers making bank, and the rest of us are, well, half-wishing we were engineers.

Getting a roommate seems like the only logical thing to do right now. I don’t do well with roommates. Living alone has taken my depression and thrown it out the window. For the most part.

Lucky for me, my friend volunteered her second bedroom as a place for me to live in July. That’s very nice of her. I’ll pay her rent, of course, and I’ll save some money because I won’t be paying $1050 or $1300 – what I would be paying if I stay in my current place. I can’t stay there forever, but a month will probably be ok. She has a big dog and I don’t get along that well with most dogs. But maybe I’ll make friends with the dog in July.

So if I decide to move out, I’ll pack up most of my stuff before I leave for my trip, and then put all my furniture into storage when I get back at the end of June. In July I’d do my apartment shopping and, fingers crossed, I’d find something decent that’s a good amount less than $1300 a month so the entire moving situation was worth it.

Given, I’m somewhat picky about my living space. I like light in my apartment. I work from home most of the time, so I need a place where I can be comfortable working. A place that isn’t too small. I get really claustrophobic in teeny tiny studios. My current studio is nice and large. It would be nice to have a balcony or patio. It would be nice to have a second room to make my office, so I could deduct that portion of the rent on my taxes. I’d probably turn the bedroom of a 1br into an office and keep the living room set up as a “studio.” I hope the IRS wouldn’t mind that I store my clothes in my office closet.

How Does Anyone Afford Superficial Purchases?

I went to the mall today. I know, I know, I should never do that. But sometimes I like to shop. I went for an hour on my lunch break. I tried on a bunch of clothing. Outfits that would cost me two month’s of my food budget. Looking in the mirror, I realized that even these garments, these $200 pairs of jeans and $99 shirts layered over another $99 shirt weren’t able to make me look halfway decent.

I stared at my thighs. Those chicken legs. Short, with lots of fat up on my inner thigh. I thought of a time when I was thinner and how that fat was still there, albeit slightly less prominent. I thought about how growing up my mother constantly reminded me of my fat stomach, that protruding bump that must be hidden at all times, but how she never mentioned my giant hips, butt or thighs – and how I wonder if my legs will ever look remotely attractive.

Then, I thought about liposuction. The surgery that, with a little vacuum cleaner, sucks out all your fat (while cleaning out your bank account.)

I came home, obsessed with the idea of lipo. After all, my happiness depends on not having fat thighs. That’s worth the price, isn’t it?

Of course, I’ll probably never get liposuction. The costs are far too great. It would probably cost me $3000-$4000 just to get rid of the lard on my inner thigh. And there are plenty of other areas I want to tackle to. I imagine lipo for all of my problem areas would add up to over $20k. Lower abdomen, arms, inner thigh, hips, outer thigh…

And then, I really want to get my teeth fixed. They’re yellowish and crooked, with an unsightly gap in the middle.

Throw in the laser hair removal, which would probably not be permanent due to my having PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome), add some hair extensions for kicks, a breast lift, some laser eye surgery, maybe foot surgery because that weird bone sticks out making my toes really wide and impossible to fit into any shoes, plus, why not also get a laser facial to make my skin look fresh and radiant, some new highlights and hair dye, and… then, only then, will I even start to feel good about how I might look in that pair of $200 jeans, and that $99 shirt layered over another $99 shirt.

But… at what point in one’s career does she feel entitled to spending that much money on making herself beautiful? Obviously people do it, there wouldn’t be that many plastic surgeons in the world if the only people getting such surgery were in accidents.

I’m 24 now, and in my 20s, I just want to be beautiful. In my 30s, I want to be beautiful. I want to enjoy the last remnants of my youth by – being able to wear a bikini and feel beautiful.

Sure, I could exercise, I could eat right. That would help a lot. But I don’t think all of the fat would go away. It would stick around some places. That’s just what happens. That’s why people get surgery.

I want to save up for liposuction.

But I also want to, one day, buy a house.

Lipo versus a house… I think the house wins.

And once I buy a house, well, I’ll have to pay for that house for many years to come.

And then I’ll have children and they’ll cost a fortune. And if I actually have them (and not adopt) my stomach will get even worse. And I’ll want plastic surgery even more. But by then it will be impossible to be that selfish. The money will have to go to bills and health insurance for the family and my kids and their summer camps and college and…

And I’ll never be able to enjoy being beautiful.

My Stupidity and Taxes

So… being the terrible procrastinator that I am, I waited until the last minute to do taxes. Well, that’s not exactly true, I filed on April 13, but I needed to send off the check and I couldn’t find my stamps, so I waited until April 15 to mail my check (federal only, I sent off the $2 I owed for State taxes electronically).

Well, I put my check in the sidewalk mailbox at 5:40pm, and then realized that it was too late to get it postmarked for the day. So what did I do? I decided it would be smartest to pay by credit card online ($30 “fee” tacked on and all) to make sure the IRS got my payment on time.

My payment did go through, it seems, but now I have a check out to the IRS for $1243 and I have no idea if they’re going to cash it or not. If they check my records they’d see I paid it already and not cash the check, but I have a feeling it isn’t going to be so simple. I imagine they’d cash the check, then see that I’ve paid twice, then, in two years or so, send me a refund for the money I overpaid.

The big problem here is that this means I need to keep gobs of money in my checking account in order to ensure I won’t overdraft.

Meanwhile I think my estimated tax payment is going to get in late since I mailed it at the same time. I’m hoping any penalty fee on that won’t be so bad since it’s only a day late at the latest.

Ok, this year I’m really going to keep on top of things! I bought myself a cute little accordion folder to keep all of my receipts for anything work related, which hopefully will make it easy to turn my taxes over to a CPA at the end of the year.

I really need to get organized. I am so terribly ADD, disorganized and the whole nine.


How Am I Supposed to Feel?

i wrote this entry as a friends-only post in my personal blog, but i felt like sharing it here because it’s relevant to my personal finances and also my tagline “a quarter life crisis and change.”


i just wish life would click into place. i’m starting to accept that i never will. when i was younger, i always believed that one day i’d just get it. i’d fit in, i’d be loved, i’d just know what was going on and i wouldn’t have to worry anymore.

geez, i’m almost 25. almost 20 freaking 5.

i don’t know what i want to do with my life despite the fact that i’m doing a lot with my life.

i used to feel like i needed to do something important. now i just want to get from day to day.

i used to believe passion was everything. now i’m numb more than ever. disconnected.

i feel love and it feels great. but is love enough? i mean, for life, that is. is that all there is to want? or should i chase money? fame? what is it i should want? family?

that’s my problem. i don’t know what to want anymore. sure i want to make money. i want to save money. i like buying things. but i’m not really driven to become rich. i maybe want a family one day but i’m not sure. my ovaries are not exactly my best friends and they’re going to fight me if i ever want to have kids. could i even deal with having kids? i’m too selfish and irresponsible to have children. at least for now. will i ever change? i haven’t changed yet.

i think what’s bugging me so much is that i’ve lost my drive. i’m almost content. still scared, still worried that i’m going to end up unemployed and alone.


i don’t know. i find these little things to drive me for a while. theater. auditions. even though i know my singing voice is off key more often than not. sometimes i get a part. and there’s the rush. there’s the reason to go forward in life. but it’s gone so soon.

my old friend wrote an entry today about how she feels disconnected from her family and siblings because she lives so far away. i kind of feel that too. not that i’d want to live back home. god, i’d be miserable.

i just feel so terribly lost. and maybe that’s how i’m supposed to feel. like life is pointless and i’m lost and just wandering on blindly. and maybe my goal is to just deal with it. try to smile and laugh as much as possible and enjoy the simple things in life.

but then i’m just so… bored. and in some respects so empty. but that’s because more than anything i want to want. to need. to have that hunger for… something.

i’m going to israel in a month and i’m not even excited about it. nor am i worried that i’m going to lose at the least $2000 in salary for the two+ weeks I’ll be away. i just don’t care… at all… about much of anything… anymore.

is this depression or just growing up?

My Father is Sick, My Mother Doesn’t Even Know How to Pay the Bills

Far across the country, my father is lying in bed, fighting off illness, and my mother is fretting that the lights are going to turn off because the electric bill hasn’t been paid.

My dad is in his late 50s and has been suffering from diabetes and obesity for years. He has refused to treat his condition properly, and has not taken the insulin prescribed to him because he said that it was impossible to lose weight on it. Of course, the way he eats with no exercise, it’s not possible to lose weight in a healthy way.

He’s supposed to go to the doctor to get checkups every few months but he hadn’t been to the doctor in over a year. That is, until this past week, when his health quickly deteriorated and has left him bed ridden.

But, being the stubborn guy that he is, he’s still telling my mom to bring him the bills to pay. He can’t even get out of the bed, yet he won’t let her pay the bills.

The saddest thing of all might be the fact that my mother doesn’t even know how to pay the bills to begin with. I mean, she could pay them, but she has no idea how much money my dad has in his accounts, or how much is saved for their future. If any credit card bills don’t get paid, it’s on her credit history as much as it is his.

My father finally went to the doctor. It sounds like there are more problems than just the discomforting illness that sent him into the doctor in the first place. They did some blood work and determined that there’s something wrong with his prostate. It’s either an infection or cancer, apparently. They’re giving him antibiotics to try to clear up the infection but if that doesn’t work it might be malignant.

Given that my dad hasn’t been to the doctor in forever, he’s probably waited too long to treat any sort of cancer if that indeed is his infliction.

My father and I don’t have a close relationship, but I’m still scared for him, and for my mom. I’ve accepted for a long time that he could just die and be gone any day, the way he takes care of himself. Still, I don’t want it to happen, obviously.

My mom said he hasn’t said he’s scared, but he at the very least admitted to her that she was right – that he should have gone to the doctor sooner. For anyone who knows my dad, him admitting to my mom that she was right says a lot about his view on his condition at this point.

He’s been in the hospital before, but it wasn’t enough to scare him to get healthy. He doesn’t seem to believe he can, or he doesn’t care to do it.

I want him to grow old and be around to be the grandparent of my children one day. He’s not the best guy in the world, he has his issues, he was abusive to me when I was a kid, and he’s emotional abusive and somewhat physically abusive to my mother at times. Still, deep down inside of him, there’s a good guy there. And I want that good guy to grow old and be around for a while.

And then, logistically, there’s the real concern of what would happen now if he did pass away. My mother wouldn’t know what to do with the money at all. I have a feeling my dad has a decent amount saved in 401ks, etc, but if my mom knew just how much they had she’d go and spend it all. Of course I wouldn’t let her do that – and she’d listen to me. She admits she knows nothing about managing the household money. I’d have to step in and take charge of all of that, probably – from figuring out my sister’s potential college education to the cost of my mom supporting herself, etc, etc.

I’ve always figured it would happen – some day – but I’m not ready for it to happen quite yet.

Maybe I’m thinking too far ahead of myself. My dad could just have an infection and he could get better soon. And if that’s the case things will just go on as they’ve been… he’ll continue to be stubborn and my mom will continue to be clueless.

People My Age Are Stupid

…so says a new report by the AARP. In a survey of folks ages 19-39, the majority of them didn’t seem to be worried about credit card debt, or the fact that they weren’t saving enough for retirement.

I’m glad that I surfed on to An English Major’s Money blog about two years ago. I don’t remember how I got there, but reading her blog and other PF blogs made me feel more confident about investing and saving. I was almost too ashamed to invest or save at that point, given that I had money tucked away already. But then I realized how I needed to start making that money work for me, and not to feel bad for doing so.

But most 20-somethings are dumb about these things. If they’re lucky, they’ve got an employee-sponsored 401k plan with match, and they contribute some of their earnings to that because their employer recommended it and salesman from mutual fund firms came and pitched the horrors of not being prepared for retirement in order to sell their high-fee funds. Unlucky and they’d be in credit card debt with no savings, no “emergency fund,” and definitely no retirement fund for the future.

I’m so grateful to the personal finance blogging community for getting me on the right track.