Monday, January 19, 2015


We moved into this house in the middle of September.  We unpacked, set up our new systems for this house, worked around our friends hired to do the remodeling.
We continued our volunteer work – at Needs ministry and at church.  Things were busy.  Just the right kind of busy.  A great mix of Bible study, children’s church, Needs and time with friends.
We became more and more acclimated to and in love with our home.  No longer a project – but ‘home’.
Our past two homes had vaulted ceilings.  Not necessarily the most energy efficient, but great for a sense of space and also for bringing in light.  In this house, we had standard 8 foot ceilings and we were both concerned about missing that sense of space and light.  I know, first world problems, right?
To combat this, we had a wood plank ceiling installed – painted a semi-gloss white.  It is very reflective and with all the windows we have in the living/dining room areas,  it feels quite light and airy and we don’t miss the vertical space.
Living in the woods is such a treat; we often see deer meandering through our back yard.  After my injury, when I spent a lot of time recuperating on the couch recuperating, Pat put two bird feeders up in the yard – a suet feeder and a sunflower seed dispenser.
It took a few days, almost a week – but the birds found us.  First the chickadees, then juncos, nuthatches, goldfinches and purple finches.  The suet feeder regularly hosts the woodpecker clan –  downy, hairy, red-bellied and pileated.  The woods is alive and it is easy to spend significant amounts of time watching the birds come in and take turns at the feeders.  The squirrels are active too, both black and gray, and so far have not proved the squirrel proof claims of the sunflower feeder wrong.

Last week Pat printed out our credit card activity for 2014.  We do not carry a balance on our card, but use it for most purchases because we get one percent cash back. We use that to our advantage.

Many of our new home purchases were put on there – lumber, cabinets, glass, - whatever we could to earn that 1%.

And then there was my elbow injury.  I am a self paying patient (that is a long article for another day) and  I put some of my surgical expenses on there

The print out Pat gave me was daunting.  The money spent for the house was planned.  The surgery was not.  The inconvenience of moving (oh, yeah and the vertigo I experienced for several days prior to our move), and the elbow injury let us rationalize  some rather lazy habits of grabbing fast or convenience foods, which brought our credit card expenses higher.

Again, we are so thankful that GOD has given us the ability to pay the balance off each month.  But I am DETERMINED to bring our costs down this year.  Way down.  I want to get my tightwad mojo back again.

I was very tempted to be worried about our spending the other day.
Until I looked out the window. Dozens of birds flitted back and forth.  They would take up a perch on a tree down the hill or off on the knoll and when they sensed the time was right, swoop in and avail themselves of the free food provided for them. 

Where one month ago there was nothing.

Oh me of little faith.
  Watching the birds reminded me of Matthew 6:25-34.  

You should read it.

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