Mahala Sees the Future

Did I ever tell ya'll that my great uncle Cicero was a for real newspaper  Psychic down in  Tyler, Texas?  Well, he was.

I'm a planner. I think it's a security thing, feeling the need to plan out every detail, anticipating any and all possible scenarios makes me feel safer somehow. Having said that, I should probably point out that I seldom stick to the original plan, details are moved and changed, going with the flow of what life hands me until the actual outcome has morphed into something all together different.

For instance, this past weekend I had planned to do yard work. Mother Nature, however, decided to dump a gully washer of biblical proportions down on Frog Pond Holler. My grass is up to my right butt cheek in spots and now it's a soggy mess. So, I got dressed, loaded The Amazon in the truck and drove out to the Tractor Supply for a deal (with a coupon!) on dog food, sure to keep the fur babies in drool covered chow for months to come. While we were out, we hit a few antique shops and a discount grocery warehouse, grabbing deals where we could find them.

It was an adventure. A grand time was had by all.

Anywho.. my point was that while it's always great to have a plan, you can't get all caught up in the details when  life seems to have other ideas. Everything happens for a reason, you have to be flexible.

Since our county agencies have had me on an emotional roller coaster in regards to Ma's future, first with "OMG she needs to be in a home" leading me to worry how I'll make up the other $900 in bill money a month to "We'll see what SHE wants to do" pulling the rug right out from under THAT plan and leaving my head spinning from guilt to relief to just wanting to crawl under a rock, "planning" has kind of been up in the air. So, I've decided I need to cut back on some things, just in case, so that if and or when a decision is made, I won't have a nervous breakdown deciding what I'm going to do.

Adding More Money to My Month

Come June, my beloved purpular crackberry will have to go.

*A moment of silence*

I love my crackberry, but let's be honest. I work five minutes from home. The only time I don't have access to a computer to check my email is during that five minutes or when I'm at the grocery store. And honestly, that's really the only thing I use it for. Besides, there's no 4G in the holler. Or 3G. Or 2.  Oh... and an alarm clock. I use that a lot for lunch time cat naps. By cancelling my Blackberry data plan and buying a "normal" phone (I will add a text plan... no sense in being extreme) I'll save about $30 a month.

I'm downgrading my Second Life.

Yeah yeah, I live in an RV with a rabbit, no running water and I'm over drawn $235 but I own virtual land, with a virtual business, which has, with the economic downturn, gone into the virtual toilet. So, I'm selling my land, cancelling my "premium account" and going back to being a homeless wanderer of the virtual world.

Don't judge me.

I used to make enough.. ya know.. pretend money.. to pay my not-so-pretend membership and land fees. Nowadays, I'm going in the hole. This will save (this is embarrassing..) $15 a month.

When I got my federal tax refund, I paid off my Discover card. This saves $90 a month.

I'm also back into the coupon clipping thing. I read Southern Savers religiously (this is not a paid endorsement or anything, I just honestly love the site,) and while I've always used it to find coupons and see local grocery ads, this time I've read her advice on buying items in bulk when they're on sale and I'm giving it a try. When I've worked the coupons + B1G1 sales + CVS bucks magic before, I got excited about "saving" money and bought stuff I'd never use. This time, I'm being uber careful, really questioning what I'm spending on. Stuff like dog food, cat food, toilet paper, deodorant, toothpaste, mayo.. ya know.. shelf stable stuff that we'll always need, I'm grabbing in big ass bags.

That dog food I got at Tractor Supply? 46.8lbs. That's a butt ton of dog food.

Other schemes in the works:

The Amazon has decided.. nay.. become OBSESSED with having chickens. I told her that if she'd help me get the fence put up, we'd turn the old, too-small-for-Ayla dog house into a chicken house. They sell pre-made nesting boxes at the Tractor Supply for cheap. I can probably scare up enough scrap wood to build a little coop frame, I should only have to buy some hardware fabric. I told her.. TWO chickens. THAT'S IT. Hens only. Her reasoning will be that we'll have fresh eggs. I'm pretty sure two demonic hell birds are going to cost me more than a dozen eggs a week would, but.. whatever. It'll be blog fodder if nothing else.

I was flogged as a small child by an angry mama hen. I do not like chickens. In my heart, I know I'll end up being the one cleaning up chicken pewp.. but maybe I can over come my fear. Just ask T.A. If I see a chicken, I'll cross the road to avoid it.

I have no idea how this is going to work out.

Also, I received my veggie seeds in the mail. I won't be plowing up a huge plot like I did last year. I'll be sticking various varieties around the yard, separate, so I can keep up with that the sam hill I'm growing and to break up the mowing area.

Last year's fiasco also taught me that just because I HAVE 100 seeds doesn't mean I have to PLANT 100. I've been assured that I can over winter the leftover seeds in the freezer. The crop will include (Lord willing,) tomatoes, cucumbers, bush beans, corn, carrots, peppers, parsley for Lola and loofa sponges. If that last one works out, I'll be selling them in my Etsy shop.


That sorta gets ya'll caught up with where my head is these days.

It's a scary place, my head.

Spring is in the air ya'll. Kick off your shoes and frolic in it, while the frolicking is good. Ya'll have a wonderful week. I'll be back to bore your knickers off again soon.


Later taters!!

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Anonymous said...

Girl I feel your pain. I went back to basic cable and slow ass internet to save 20 bucks. And am thinking about the phone thing...Can't quite downgrade that one yet. But eventually I will probably not have an option. We all just got to hang on and hope the ride ends soon. Good luck!

Judy (kenju) said...

I need to downgrade everything, especially now that I owe my dentist more than I owe the gas card. :-/

b.fez said...

If the chickens work out ok, then you might consider getting more so that you can sell the eggs. Every now and then, I buy eggs from a guy who works in my office complex - he raises chickens in his back yard. The eggs are "organic" (more or less) and he sells them for $4.00 a dozen. I bet the tourists that come through Frog Pond Holler would go nuts. And it's passive income, if the Amazon will help out with the chicken maintenance and feeding... :)

Anne said...

To help with getting a ballpark idea on what it will run you for chickens.. figure each hen needs about 4oz of feed per day. Then there's bedding, grit, oyster shells, you might need to check about wormers in your area.

Get a really good storage can for the feed. Mice will be attracted, with then attracts snakes.. and we all know your fondness for those critters. Predator proofing is important.

Have TA check out the different breeds. Some mature at 16 weeks.. some at over 20 weeks old. They lay really well the first year and then it tapers off. Some breeds lay better than others, some are more friendly, some lay larger eggs, some go broody easy (when they are broody, they stop laying).

They are fun pets, but you'll end up paying a lot if eggs are the only thing you are after.

May want to look into chicken tractors.. may as well have the birds do some work in the garden for you by clearing the weeds.

Celia said...

Cut back to basic cable too, the offering is so inane I'm about give it up all together and go for DVD's from the library and Netflix, which means I have to keep my expensive internet hookup but still...good nluck with your chickies.

rennratt said...

My coworker bought 7 chickens last year in order to 'save money'. She brought 14 dozen eggs to work on Monday, as she is drowning in EGGS now.

They lay well in the spring, but taper off when it gets really hot/cold.

We had moderate success with 'raised bed' gardening a few years ago. We laid plastic over the red clay, then dumped soil over it and 'fenced it in' with planks. We had tomatoes, cukes, peppers, etc. Crushed egg shells and coffee grounds are really beneficial to soil for planting, too.

Good luck!

Anne said...

I have 8 hens (2 roos and 4 guinea fowl.) The 4 Barred Rocks are sweet, fluffy and pretty quiet. They are overachievers atm laying about 5 medium sized brown eggs a week per hen. The 3 Ameraucanas (Easter eggers) average about 1 blue-green egg almost every other day... but they are jumbos. A lone Rhode Island Red hen.. she's similar to the Barred hens.. except she's chatty, insists on inspecting everything you do.. and a shameless beggar who will stalk you from the sill of the kitchen window.

Buying eggs... much cheaper. Entertainment value very high. Training Izzy the Ameraucana to sit on my hand and remove the Japanese beetles from the pole beans.. as well as remove spiders and bugs.. priceless.

Rather like potato chips.. it is hard to stop at a few... which is why we are getting some more.

With our 8 hens.. we average a dozen every other day. We have more than enough to share with neighbors and friends.

Lisa said...

What normally do people do if they need to go into a home and financing can't be found? Does Medicare or Medicaid help? $900 seems like a lot.

Mahala said...

Medicare pays for it, but in exchange they take the patient's social security check. I think they get a small allowance.