Saturday, November 1, 2014

My birthday may be over, but the party is just getting started (fingers crossed)

Sometimes it’s tough to come up with an opening line here. (Especially when you’re not sure what all you’re planning on sharing, until you start writing it.)  In a nutshell, this was a good week.  I may dislike my job (ok that goes without saying) but I’m grateful I have it, along with a great bunch of coworkers.

For example, here are two gifts from my friends (and teammates) Kathy & Danielle.  They not only gave me a couple of cool thingamabobs (a miniature Walton’s House and a 1970’s tv that lights up and plays the Brady Bunch theme), they wrapped both of ‘em in handmade “Daryl from The Walking Dead” wrapping paper!

If that ain’t love, I don’t know what is.

My coworker Karan’s birthday is the day before mine, so we celebrated together with a giant “ice cream” cake covered in oreos; here’s Karan, enjoying his slice

Two other coworkers (Gwen & Candace) bought me lunch (a ridiculously expensive pizza covered in string onions... heh) and our team-leader Jamie gave me a $30 gift card from Amazon with a talking Spock that says “Annihilation Jim. Total, complete & absolute annihilation.”  Like I said, a swell group of people.

And to top things off, last night I did my customary “weekly check-in” with the stock market (to update the Retirement-Date on my blog) and couldn’t have asked for a better way to end a birthday. MONEY!

Okay not exactly money, but unrealized gains!!!

It’s one thing to jump for joy after a day with good returns, but this has been going on ALL WEEK—my portfolio balance has recovered almost all of it’s prior losses. I wonder how long the good times will roll?

(At least if we suffer another round of downturns, we’ll be starting out from the top again!)

And so I’m left wondering what my next move here will be. I’ve been saving my money & pinching those pennies, and open enrollment is starting in a couple weeks for Obamacare.  What many people don’t realize, you can’t just apply for it year ‘round—unless you’ve had a drastic change in lifestyle that was NOT OF YOUR CHOOSING, Nov-Jan is your 2-3 month window of opportunity for affordable healthcare.  And if I let that window close again this year, I’ll have to wait until next November to plot my escape?

So, I need to consider my options, including something a close friend (who shall remain nameless, as she’s a coworker) said to me:  “Do you want to cut a few corners and go now, or save some more money and have a really shitty year doing it?”

I’ve got a lot of thinking to do.