Spring Cometh Slowly

Welcome to Buffalo, NY, where it can be 86 degrees Fahrenheit one day and 36 degrees Fahrenheit the next.

But I know spring is coming.  The dandelions have popped up everywhere and the robins have returned.  The bush behind the house is still bare of leaves, but I discovered a newly built robin’s nest:

How can birds created something in such a perfect circle?  I can’t even crochet perfectly, and I have hands and fingers!  Nature is awesome, isn’t it?  Hopefully, there will soon be eggs in that nest and I’ll be able to get some new photos.  I can hardly wait.

While I wait for spring, I’ve been working on my finances in anticipation of the termination of my job at the end of the year.  I’ve paid off my last two home improvement loans and am stocking up on non-perishable essential items like shampoo and soap – and yarn for crocheting.  I know that once my income drops, I will have to stop buying books and start going to the library again, but now that the COVID pandemic is over, I can deal with that.

Fortunatley, I refinanced the house a couple of years ago, thus reducing my monthly mortgage payment at that time by $120.  Unfortunately, the town then reassessed all properties and raised my  taxes by 55%, thus increasing my monthly payment by $100.  But the good thing is that when the house was purchased 5 years ago, I made sure the mortgage payment would still be affordable once I was fully retired and relying solely on Social Security – and I’m not dead in the water yet, even though I know those taxes will go up again this year and probably every year for as long as I own this house.

Today’s thorough review indicates that I could, in fact, manage without working when my job ends.  Social Security will cover all except about $40 a month of my expenses, and if I diligently save all my pennies for the next 7 months and add that to what I currently have in savings, I should be able to slide by for quite awhile.  So long as hubby is able to continue to work at least part-time – he’s carrying  the health insurance and paying for most of the groceries and Puppy Cody’s veterinary bills.

One can only hope and plan.  It’s going to be interesting to see what happens, financially speaking – but hey, if there’s suddenly no money for food, at least I have plenty of fat I can live off of.  It’s not they way I’d like to diet, but it wouldn’t be the first  time I had to decide between feeding myself or feeding the dog (the dog won).

Welcome to the world of old people struggling to survive on Social Security in the United States.  To all you younger readers – if you can invest in a 401-K, IRA, or retirement plan, do so.  Those options were never available to me.

Wish me luck, folks.  It’s going to be a wild ride.

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I love to hear from my readers. You may comment on this post, comment on my Twitter page, or email me at cordeliasmom2012@yahoo.com
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Images by Cordelia’s Mom/TeddyRosalieStudio

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18 Responses to Spring Cometh Slowly

  1. I hear you. Here in the UK state pensions have risen by just over 10%. Lovely…….. for five minutes. The government have frozen ‘personal tax allowances’ until 2028, and whereas Hubby and I didn’t pay tax before, both of us are now. I lost the £4 a month increase in my works pension plus another tenner on top of that in tax. Hubby has also lost most of his increase, but at least the 10% from the government has already been taken into account so it’s not all doom and gloom. We have no mortgage or rent, but it’s the food inflation that is getting us. Two months ago it was 16.7% and now it is down to 15.9%. Food prices are going up every time I shop, cheese, eggs, milk, oils and spreads have seen increases ranging from 34% to 77%. Energy and local taxes have seen hikes, but at least fuel prices are coming down at the moment, but for how long, is anyone’s guess. Insurances (car, household etc) are also going up so we are just doing what we can, spending what we must, and trying to squirrel away any surplus, the same as everyone else, except our wondrous politicians who have no money worries and on salaries around £100K plus expenses. Our PM is actually richer than King Charles, so how can he possibly have any idea how ‘real people’ are struggling?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I hear you, too. I didn’t realize it was that bad across the pond, too. I just came back from the grocery store because there were items I wanted to pcik out instead of trusting hubby to do so. The prices are shocking, even for everyday essentials. On top of that, prices for pet supplies have skyrocketed. Cody’s flea/tick collar was $54 six months ago; today it’s $69. But I don’t want fleas/ticks on her or in my house, so I’ll cough it up. Ugh.

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      • Eggs have gone up from £1.18 for 10 last year to £1.79, but if you want free range you can pay up to £5 for half a dozen. Cheese has gone up from £3.59 to £5.79 and I am refusing to pay 95p a litre for long life milk which was 49p a year ago. Fresh milk is cheaper. Dog food here has rocketed too. A 2.7kg pack we used to buy for Maggie was 6.60, sometimes less. Now it’s £8.95. and we buy two a month to top up the dry mix with biscuits to give Maya more protein. We pay a monthly fee to our vet which covers flea and worm treatments (including lung worm), annual jabs and two checkups with nail trims a year. It spreads the cost and makes it easier for me to budget.

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        • A monthly vet plan sounds great. I don’t know of any vet around here that offers that. As for the dog food, Cody is on a prescription diet because of her digestive issues, and you can only imagine what that costs. But at least she’s able to tolerate the first prescription we tried and didn’t have to go to the next option, which was, I believe, made with kangaroo or ostrich – those would have been exorbitant!

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          • We bought an expensive puppy food as suggested by Maya’s breeder and it went up from £32.99 for 14kgs to £45.99 and then she went off it! I ended up giving 3 sacks worth over £100 to charity. She seems to like what we’re giving her now, which is considerably cheaper, even with the extra protein we’re putting in. So far, so good, as GSDs can have dicky tummies.

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  2. ladyryl says:

    Lovely to see your photos of spring trying it’s best to arrive.
    Sounds like your “ducks” are lining up for you so far. May they continue to do so in the years to come.

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  3. willowdot21 says:

    I find this so hard to read we all work so hard to provide for our retirement , I am appalled that your government doesn’t provide for you at all. Ours is not much better, it’s wrong it makes me so angry . Take care and good luck.💜💜💜

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  4. Dan Antion says:

    Does your town/city offer tax reductions for retirees on fixed incomes? Our town does, in accordance with a state law. I think we have to be 65, and there are two pages of requirements, but it might be worth looking into.

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  5. markbialczak says:

    Best wishes preparing on the ramp to retirement, CM. I took the step in January and my dear wife Karen is thinking about her last working years until until she can hang it up. Inflation shakes us every trip to the market, it sure does, even though I was fortunate enough to add to my SS a couple of pension benefits from my working decades. A suggestion, if I may? Start the governmental application process sooner rather than later if you haven’t already. Possible confusion and delays can lurk around every corner.

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