Friday, December 09, 2011

Keeping life in lists and journals

If I got rich and was done paying off any important expenses/setting aside money for my family and the rest of my life, what would I do with the money (for fun)?

I’ve been making these lists periodically for as long as I’ve had a journal…which is a long time. The earliest I remember keeping a journal is 3rd or 4th grade (I don’t have that one anymore sadly), and I think that was my “runaway journal”. I was determined to run away from home at some point in my life and that journal was going to log my journey into the cold outdoors, armed with a backpack, a toothbrush, and a change of clothes. No one ever said I took myself seriously…

I’ve had some internal conflict on the subject of keeping old journals. I made a resolution to myself years ago, that I’ve kept to pretty well, that I would not re-read journals once they’re finished. I’ve extended that to not reading past entries in my current journal as well, for peace of mind. Finishing a journal doesn’t always mean writing to the last page. I have many blank pages in many of my past journals, and even though I’d like to save some paper by filling them out completely, sometimes I just get the sense that the journal is done, and it’s time to take a break and/or start a new one. This often occurs at the start of a new year or upon receiving a new blank journal as a gift. My current journal is a hand-made leather-bound journal that I bought at Kind Richard’s Faire last year and I am determined to use every last page.

So here’s this year’s version of the answer to the bolded question that started this post:

 

  • Buy a big house in a somewhat rural environment. I would still want to be drivably close to a city or suburban town, but ideally I’d have a huge messy (I’d hire landscapers on occasion and local kids to cut the grass) yard and lots of trees and open space. If I was really lucky, I’d also have hidden wires (buried telephone poles, these are more common in more expensive communities and in Maryland…which is a bit redundant). Maple trees are a must, even if they spawn baby maple trees, because they are the ultimate trees for leaf piles.
  • Learn how to keep bees…and keep them! My grandfather kept bees when he moved into rural Maine with my grandmother in the early 1980s. One of my fondest childhood memories is watching him suit up to care for the bees, and helping spin the big vat filled with honeycombs to get fresh honey. No honey will ever compare in my tongue’s memory to the taste of Dresden honey.
  • Run a small IT support business. I’d probably keep it fairly local, the idea being that I could come to you if you did not want to meet up for me to temporarily take possession of your laptop, but I’d like to be able to provide remote services for preferred or disabled clients as well. Ideally, the business would be run in such a way that I could keep an intern or hire a couple of local students looking to get more IT or work experience. The business would largely be kept for busy-work, as I imagine I’d get pretty bored.

 

Those are the major ideas rolling around my head. I’m sure there’s more I’d do if I was actually in this situation, but today, these strike me as most important.

What would you do if you’d taken care of the important finances in your life and wanted to splurge?

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