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Thursday, January 01, 2009

New Years Day 2009

When I went to type the subject and put in the year, I automatically typed 1 first instead of 2. Old habits still die hard. I stayed home last night. I've stayed home the past few years for various reasons. It's not a hard and fast declaration. In fact, I had planned to go up to Springer Mountain to celebrate with the group that gathers there every year. In the end it just felt like I wanted to stay close to home. I did have a glass of wine, and stayed up till midnight. I was hoping to see the extra second tick off at time.gov. It didn't. Oh, well.

The possibility of needing to live off unemployment for some unknown period of time is weighing on me a lot. My fixed monthly expenses are more than unemployment pays. I have some ways to make up that difference if I am very careful. I have already cut some of the expenses, and have a couple of more that I can cut. I don't use the data on my phone much, and that is $40 a month. I probably will cash in my while life insurance policy that I've had forever. It won't be a lot, but with no dependents I am to the point that I don't really need it. I hopefully have enough in my 401(k)'s to pay my parents enough to bury me and pay off my debts. That's all I'm concerned about. I have my expense spreadsheet set up for 2009. I have spent maybe 5 or 6 years perfecting it. It shows me a snapshot of everything about my expenses at any given time. Of course, I have to actually put in the information. It's set up to track my expenses to the penny, and every January I start well in keeping up with it. I think about 6 weeks is as long as I've gone in the past couple of years. It does help with keeping spending down by putting it in my face, and that is depressing sometimes.

I have gotten all of my 'must do' running around done this vacation. The Toyota is now street legal for another year. That was expensive, close to $1300.00 all told. That is why money is tight now, just as I'm looking to maybe lose my job. The Toyota gets much better gas mileage though, and I do still really like it. I will probably drive it most of the time now instead of the Jeep, keeping the Jeep for trips and to drive when I want the 4WD. I can enjoy the Toyota now that I have a backup truck for when it dies. AT 335K miles, that was a real concern.

I went hiking for a couple of hours the other day. I hiked to the new 'Nature Center' that has been promised on the information board at the trail head for a year now. The hike to it is all uphill. I had expected a nice little cabin tucked into the woods, since it is billed as an environmental experiment, yada yada. When I got there, it had a parking lot, water tower, and was huge. I could have driven there had I come in from the other direction. It wasn't open, which is just as well since I was so disappointed. Then again, I have to remember this is a Metro Nashville park. When it is open I'll stop by and ask questions about the 'environmental' part of the plan.

I think I'll go back and hike today to celebrate the day. Then is the cleanup of the loose ends around here to get ready to go back to work after 2 weeks of vacation. I have no idea what I'll be heading into there, so I just need to get myself situated for whatever comes.

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