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Thursday, February 10, 2005

Life's Secret Pleasures

I was thinking one day about all the little things that make my day, and how important it really is to find excuses to enjoy "Lifes Little Pleasures". It really makes life bearable.

Here are a few:

Get a nice showerhead. I have found this to be a neccesity. Having a nice showerhead changes ANY morning into a good one. Ours has a dial that changes tween 2 settings. 50 tiny lazer streams of hot water, or 3 pelting stream of hot water. Or you can set the dial in the middle and get a little of both. OH MY HANNAH I LOVE IT! I generally only get out of the shower cause the hot water has run out. This is a secret pleasure which everyone has a right to enjoy.

A nice soft bed. This makes a huge difference as well. A mattress with a pillow top will suffice. Otherwise just buy a topper. They are between $40-$150 depending on softness, technology, and size. We bought a memory foam topper for our king size bed for $80. It feels like marshmallows. It is soooooooooooo soft, it is amazing. I love going to bed cause I know I get to sleep on the clouds. AHHHHHH! This is a must have for those seeking the secret pleasures of life.

Freedom from debt. You truly dont understand what it means to be free from debt until you are. Currently we have 0 credit card debt. And it is sooo nice not to owe any money. Once you are out of unneccesary debt long enough, you can REALLY feel how crappy debt is when you get back in it. It feels like a weight around your neck. It plain stinks! We have house and school debt, and those alone are enough to kill a person. If you really think about it, it would appear that the purpose of life is to come here, amass a huge amount of debt, pay it off, then die. Happy are those who pay it off early, then have some life left to enjoy some debt free years. How much more could you do if you just didnt have a house payment? Or rent? You could go on a cruise every 2 months! See, you dont need to make alot of money to live rich, you just have to get out of debt.

Here is a secret that most will never figure out. Find a hobby that you truly enjoy. One which enjoy enough that you get grumpy if you cant find time to do it. THEN, figure out how to make money with it. The money part is the secret. Do something you would normally do enthusiastically for free, then figure out how to get paid for it. Its like icing on the icing on the cake. You want icing on the icing on the icing on the cake? Find something you AND your wife enjoy and make money with it. I think most succesfull business start this way. They find something they like and are good at, then figure out how to make money with it.

Kids and grandparents. Take your kids to see their grandparents regulary. I mean this. Grandparents LOVE grandkids. Well, most anyway. And grandkids LOVE their grandparents. Kids are totally oblivious to any problems grandparents are having, wether it be marraige, getting old, money, whatever. Kids dont care, and when grandkids are around, its a welcome break from life for the grandparents.

Buy used cars. Ok, Im probably gonna take some heat on this, cause the general population likes their brand new cars. But I just dont see how anyone can justify the debt for such a thing. In reality, you spend such a small amount of time in a car, that it doesnt matter how nice it looks. All that matters is how well it runs before it needs repairs. My dad hardly ever spends more than $2500 on his cars anymore. They generally have 150,000 miles, but most run up to 200,000 miles before any major problems happen. Thats 5 cents a mile. Where are you gonna get a deal like that? If you buy a brand new car for $20,000, and drive it 200,000 miles without a single problem, your looking at 10 cents a mile. Thats twice as much! Plus your gonna pay interest on the debt bringing your total closer to $28,000 on a 5 year loan bringing you to 14 cents a mile. 3 times as much! Would you buy better gas if it was 3 times as much? I doubt it. You could buy a used car, and when you go somewhere nice or to someones house, just rent a brand new clean car for the weekend or night, and you will still be WAY under what you would pay for a new car.

Get a big piece of land. Yes, it does make a difference. None of this 1/3 or 1/4 of an acre crap! Maybe it makes more of a diff to a man than to a woman. For me, its very fulfilling to go out and look at my own piece of earth that I own and can change and create and form to my liking. Contrary to what most believe, percieve, or what show I may put on, I do enjoy a good days manual labor. Not very often, but every now and then it feels good to work like a man instead of like a desk-sitting computer nerd. BUT, there is something very satisfying about a large garden, getting grass to grow, planting trees, and then seeing your creation develop. Plus, kids LOVE big backyards. Im talking yards big enough to play a soccer game in or play lazer tag or kick ball. It doesnt have to be as big as a baseball diamond. My parents had 7/8ths of an acre and it was perfect. We had a HUGE backyard, a giant garden, a basketball court, and a large oversized deck. All the neighbor kids would always come over to play games because we had the biggest and therefore funnest yard in the whole neighborhood. My wife and I bought a 1.25 acre lot, and we have it all planned out for a oversized backyard, a giant garden, a chicken coop, basketball court, horse/cattle corral. Man needs earth, and a big chunk, so he can create his own little paradise. Woman needs home, and a fair sized one, so she can beautify and create her own little paradise.

Wake-up early. Your thinking, "yeah right!". There is no way to explain what a difference it has made to go to bed early and get up early instead of the other way around. My entire life I have been staying up late and sleeping in. And the change was very hard, and I missed being able to sleep the day away. But since I have been forced to get up super early (4:15am) my days have been sooooo much better. I feel more alert, more energy, better about life in general, and I have way more time! Not every morning is easy I admit. Some days I curse the day I decided to go with such an early schedule, but soon as I get out of that shower and realize I feel like a million bucks at 5am and can accomplish so much before the rest of the world even wakes up, its very satisfying and I enjoy it. Most people who read this blog, or actually, just most people, will never learn this principle. People in a cave tend to stay in the cave where it is dark because the light outside hurts their eyes and its easier just to stay put rather then go through the pain of letting their eyes adjust to the light so they can see the beauty of whats outside.

There are lots more than this. And I will be adding them as soon as I remember what they are. Any others I left out?

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