Of Rats and Jen (Inactive)

Tales of a Perpetual
Work In Progress

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly – and the Silver Lining

Filed under: Retired - The Life & Times of a Winged Cat — folkcat at 5:22 pm on Thursday, July 28, 2005

The Good:

My blogging has taken off like wildfire. I’m discovering it’s a great way to communicate about what I’m doing. Communicating about my life helps me to really examine and understand myself in a way that I never have before. As a result, I feel that I’m getting more value out of the same sort of tasks and activities that I’ve always done.

Blogging is also turning out to be a great way to organize information. One of my newest blogs, Folkcat’s Craft Library, is a case in point. The purpose is to create an ongoing catalog of the craft books in my personal library. Each book gets its own post, and with the help of Zoundry Blog Writer, my post editor of choice, each book that is still in print also has a link where the reader can purchase the book online. Since every post entry at Blogger can be a permanent, independent link, I will ultimately create an index page that sorts the books by category, and perhaps indices by title and author as well.

More Good:

My Cafe Press store has shaped up nicely. I’m pleased with how easy it was to configure my graphics and put them up on products. I’ve already sold just enough items to earn the fee for the first month, so it’s already demonstrating potential to pay for iteself.

Blending from Good towards Bad:

Our bankruptcy hearing was this past Tuesday morning. It actually went quite well. Gryphon and I were calm and collected, and answered the judge’s questions simply. There were no creditors challenging the matter, and the judge seemed satisfied with what he heard. We were done in about a half hour’s time, and on our way.

The Bad:

Things turned bad when we got home. Our power was off. We’ve been behind for months, and have been on a payment plan meant to get us caught up eventually, but apparently we missed one installment. Gryphon says we never saw a formal “final notice” letter, so we’re a bit annoyed and puzzled by this. Bottom line, it was one of the hottest days of the year so far, and the contrast between how well our bankruptcy hearing went and the shock of finding our financial situation in ruins at home really upset us both.

We stayed calm in the thick of the storm, though. We both have an ability to keep a clear head during an emergency and save the nervous breakdown for later. We started calling anyone we could think of who might be able to help us out. The utility company was demanding full payment of the past due amount, which was over $400. We had about $10 in the bank that we could spare.

The Ugly:

In my opinion, it’s pretty ugly that I had to turn to my folks for help on this one. I am so grateful that they were able to pay the bill for us, but I’m 44 years old, for crying out loud. About to turn 45. And I have to go to mommy for money? My parents have little enough for themselves, without having to bail me and my husband out of things. It’s also pretty ugly that the way we’d been handling the finances, Gryphon had full control of the paperwork, processing, and bill paying, and I really had no idea where we stood on anything. I absolutely had no clue we were that close to the edge on the power bill.

The Silver Lining:

The good thing that has come out of this nasty situation is that Gryphon, who has been struggling to handle the budget without my help, has come around and admitted that we need to work on it together, and that I need to be very, very involved. He wasn’t up to the job alone, that’s apparent from where it got to. In the last couple of days, we’ve been working together to give me more involvement on the matter of what money comes in and where it goes out. Things are very, very tight, and we have hardly a penny to spare, but we already have a sense that it will all get better if we can continue to work together on the budget, collaborating on the effort, sharing the load of the tough decisions, and coming up with creative solutions.

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