Friday, January 3, 2014

Going Green to Save Green

One thing I learned in 2013 is that if you don't pay attention, one's credit card debt can get out of control. We were doing ok until 2008. On July 13, 2008, my husband's mother passed away at the age of 84, two month's later my husband failed a stress test and was diagnosed with atrial fibrillation and sleep apnea. He underwent a cardioversion where they anesthetized him briefly and used paddles to zap his heart which reset it to normal rhythm. He underwent a sleep study and brought home a c-pap machine to wear at night. At the same time I was dealing with extreme iron got down to 7 due to fibroid tumors in my uterus. In November, 2009, I underwent a complete hysterectomy where they removed a ten-pound, benign fibroid tumor...instant menopause. I was 49 years old.

In June of 2010 my husband was bitten in the genital area by an insect...perhaps a spider. This resulted in his testicles swelling to the size of grapefruit, ten days in the hospital, surgery to drain the infection, a visiting nurse to change the dressing. A trip to the urologist to have the wound drained. This 2-3 month ordeal was, obviously, very stressful.

2011 was fairly quiet as was the beginning of 2012. My husband's brother passed away suddenly from a heart attack the beginning of April. He was 58 years old. This was a huge blow to our little family and we were overwhelmed with grief.

In June of 2013 we had to put our 13-year-old Shepherd/collie Zelda down due to ill health and four months and $1,500 later we had to put down our 3-year-old cat. He had a chronic cystitis issue where he would develop crystals in his bladder and be unable to empty his bladder. We had done everything we could to no avail and the next step was surgery. Sadly, we could no longer afford to treat him.

An emotional five years.  Throughout that time we were eating out a lot, traveling, spending, spending, spending and building up a lot of credit card debt.  We have finally reached the point where our cards are maxed out and we are just making the minimum payments.  In other words...something must be done and done now.  We have the assets to pay it off immediately but we would take a huge hit.  If we wait two years and eight months, we can withdraw from an annuity without penalty because my husband will be 59-1/2.

So we are looking at our options and will rectify the situation.  In the meantime, we are looking at ways to cut back on our spending.  I have been very interested in becoming greener and we have been eating as much organic food as possible.  I recently switched my skin care to a more natural product (and more expensive one) and I have taken to baking my own bread and using a lot of hydrogen peroxide and white vinegar to clean with. 

Follow me as I move into more DIY cleaning products, , beauty and body products, go green, save green and discover they joys of this journey.

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