Thursday, July 30, 2020
Let's Make This Into A Game
As you know, if you read my last post, that Jeff's last paycheck (that hopefully comes in the mail tomorrow) is way less than normal because he has used up all his sick leave and vacation time for his knee replacement surgery. We have about 3 1/2 weeks before he goes back in to see the doctor and hopefully will be signed off to go back to work again. Jeff is doing everything he can to get his strength back and is doing the exercises that they sent him home with to do. They did not have him do physical therapy but are having him do things here at home. I'm not sure if this is a Covid-19 thing or the fact that his surgeon knows Jeff well and that he also knows how determined he is to do everything he can here at home to be ready to go back to work. Hopefully it is the latter part of that statement. 😉
Be that as it may, and the fact that we will wipe out our savings to cover our bills, even after having made phone calls to cut some expenses, I am determined NOT to have to put much on the credit card. I would feel even better if we did not have to put anything on there if at all possible. It is not going to be easy, but instead of doing the whole damsel in distress, woe is me routine, I am going to challenge myself and make this into a game that I am determined to win!
To this end, Jeff and I sat down and discussed how we were going to accomplish this. So here is our plan for your viewing pleasure.
We took advantage of our food commodities giveaway in town today and we blessed with 2 HUGE boxes full of food including meats, breads, fresh fruits and potatoes, canned and packaged meals, juices and lots of canned goods along with some treats. There is not room in the budget at this point for us to spend much on groceries at this point and I realize that even after Jeff returns to work that it may be another few weeks before he gets a paycheck. We still have berries and apples coming in from the garden and the tomatoes are starting, so we are good there. I'm going to see if Jaysn and Rachel can pick me up a big bag of potting soil so that I can do some container gardening for lettuce and a few other things. I will pay them for that and it should not be that expensive. I have a bit of cash on hand at this point.
The statements from the health insurance company are coming in now and can I just say how thankful I am for good insurance? Oh my goodness, we would be sunk financially without it! Our regular doctor's office is now part of the hospital and our surgeon is also connected to it. Luckily they have all been more than willing to work with us in the past on payments. Jeff will be calling again tomorrow to make sure that this is still the case. When all is said and done we think we will be paying between around $6000 for everything. When Jeff is able to return to work, we will be upping the payment amounts to get it paid off ASAP.
The heat has cranked up here and we were over 100F today and will be there tomorrow also. We have the swamp cooler going and we put a oscillating fan in our bedroom to move the cooler air around and bring the air temperature even further down. I am spending most of my time in our bedroom now since it is the only room in the house where I am able to stay cool enough and not get sick during the day and most of the evening. Fibromyalgia makes it impossible for me to regulate my body temperature on my own, so I have to rely on external factors to do that. I am also taking lukewarm showers, followed by cool water at the end to help and am wearing the lightest and coolest clothing that I can find.
The library is not open to walk ins, but they are doing curbside pick up. I still have some books and movies here that are not due until mid August and I have a few more on order. They will either mail them to me directly or to our library and I can pick them up. I'm thinking tomorrow may be a good day to watch the movie "Abominable" since it is a "cool" movie. 😁 Just watching movies based in cold weather help cool me down. It's a mind game I suppose, but hey, it works.
I'm gathering up all my frugal living type books again and rereading them for inspiration along with going through my depression era and basic type cookbooks. I find this helpful. Some of my books are highlighted like mad and are reread over and over. They are like trusted old friends who I know are there for me in my time of need. I'm also watching movies and videos about back to basics skills and living. I gain so much from them and find them totally enjoyable.
The clothes line is going to be used almost exclusively for drying our laundry. Our electric bill was way down, but our water bill was up due to me watering the garden so much. I need to bring the electric bill down further to make up for the rise in the water bill. I am praying for some rain to help fill my rain barrel that I am using for watering the pear trees, but I'm not seeing much of that in the weather forecast. I also want to take advantage of the heat and get all the screens washed, dried and back up on the windows soon. They are in dire need of it.
We are going to cut back on our running around in our car too. I know that we will need to take Jeff's check to the bank, but I am hoping we can put that off until Monday. I really would like to be able to go down to the river that day and take Caesar with us so he can go swimming. He loves to swim and it will help him cool off too. Since it will be a Monday, there should not be too many people down there so social distancing should not be a problem. I'll pack a picnic lunch or dinner to take with us. I made Jeff promise we could go down this summer as we have not gone for the last two summers and I miss it. That will be our outing for the week.
Other than that, I am just going to try and carry on as usual and find more ways to save around here. I know I can do it. We have lived on very little before, so it is not a new concept to me. It's time to use all those skills I have learned in the past and maybe even learn a few new ones. Wish me luck!