Home > September spending

September spending

September 29th, 2020 at 03:52 pm

September was a very pricey month for me, mainly because I spent the max I've allocated for home improvements during any one year: $10,000.

I got my mason back here and he covered the ugly concrete garage wall (2 sides) with stone and it looks like an old country cottage now that's been like that forever, especially since my upper driveway is all done in pavers. (He did that too.)

What I especially like about the stones is that some of them still have lichens on them, so I'm hoping to encourage them to continue to grow as it makes everything looks so aged.

I now have 2 very nice seating areas: the back patio (same mason did that...I joke that I'm putting his kids through college) and the "side patio," which is actually part of the driveway to the left of the garage.

Those 2 tan metal chairs, incidentally, I got free from my Buy Nothing group. They had a bit of rust on them, so I used spray paint to redo them.

And that little stained glass table? Salvaged that at the dump!

Once I had that done a few weeks ago, I decided to just forge ahead and not wait til next year to replace the old wood garage door that had totally warped due to water absorption. I'm very happy with the final results.

On top of the home improvements, I had some other expenses that don't happen every month: $1310 for homeowners and auto insurance, an oil tank full-up to be ready for the cold weather, a trip to the vet and, for the first time in years, a quarterly estimated federal tax payment (just $96 this first time).

A few posts ago I talked about changing my pay structure for my job and going on retainer so I'd get the same pay every week for my p/t job.

Well, it seemed too good to be true and that didn't last! Three weeks into the new pay arrangement, the co-owner wife was covering for our p/t freelance accountant, who took some vacation time, and she came across my last week where i only worked 7 hours and was getting paid the equivalent of $100 an hour. Of course, no one said a word when I worked 7 hours or so for months and was earning about $150 a week, which was the whole reason I sought to stabilize my income.

They asked me to work additional hours to earn that fixed rate of pay they'd agreed to 3 weeks earlier. So now instead of working 18 hours (Mon/Tues/half of Wed), I'm now working a full day on Mon/Tues/Wed, or 24 hours instead of 18 to get the fixed rate we'd worked out.

It bothers me they reneged, yes (not very professional), but since I'm working from home, I'm willing to work the extra hours since the nature of how our business works is that I have tons of down time throughout the day when I can do other (personal) things.

Now, they decided to not renew the lease on the office bulding we'd been in back in March/April, but if they ever decide we need to all work together again next year,then I'll have to ask to switch back to an hourly rate of pay, because I'll be stuck on-site all 24 hours and not able to do anything else, so under my current fixed rate of weekly pay, my hourly rate of pay will have dropped substantially.

I made a return visit to someone I met through Buy Nothing to collect more goat, chicken and quail manure for next year's garden. I took this picture of my friend's cute ducks enjoying water sports.

7 Responses to “September spending”

  1. crazyliblady Says:

    Your home improvements look beautiful. You should be very proud. I am sure that took a lot of planning and saving some money. Don't forget to recommend the mason to your friends. He/she did a great job.

  2. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    omg it looks so good. I love it. I think it looks amazing and garage doors are definitely worth investing in. It'll keep the house warmer.

  3. Wink Says:

    Everything looks great! Well worth the investment. Those ducks are so cute!

  4. Thrifty Ray Says:

    That looks amazing!! And that little dump find, so perfect for that seating area!!

  5. Fern Says:

    Yes, crazyliblady, I have recommended my mason many at least 4 times, and he has thanked me. Aside from being a great mason, he's a super nice person. He and his wife just had their 1st child about 10 months ago and unfortunately, his daughter was born with some sort of heart defect. She has had some surgeries already and has been in and out of the hospital up in Boston, the best in the area. His family came from Macedonia, and all his crew were over 50 and Macedonian. (Well, one Bosnian.) He has his father living with him and his wife's parents, too, so they have a lot of support.

  6. Sue Says:

    Your house, patio and garage look very nice. I love the stonework!

  7. Dido Says:

    Your house is looking terrific.

    Sorry the "too good to be true" pay rate didn't last!

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