Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Spring Hail

Goodness, but it hailed and hailed and hailed today. I indulged in a birthday dinner, and stayed longer and paid more than I would have to escape the hail. The dinner was a treat- but treat no more, for I must save and save again for my home. I have a sizeable amount saved; however I need more, and I also must live as if I need to survive on the whatever is left from paying for a roof over my head- which is how most people live, anyways. And I have gained a bit of weight from being lazy about my meals. How ironic- I was my smallest and healthiest when I lived on a strict budget, biked everywhere and cooked/prepared the majority of my meals at homes.

Consider: lunches cost me $30 ( and my dinner out cost $23.00); casual snacks and breakfast ( if I don't get it together in the am) are another $15-$20. That's about $50-$70 a week.

Okay, so that's $280/month! Yikes! Yikes! Yikes!

For that same amount, I can buy groceries for a month, if not more, enough for breakfast, tea, lunch and dinner. Just ridiculous the amount of money right there- and I have spent more with this being my birthday. Just sick to think that money just slipping your fingers just because you forgot your breakfast or lunch or simply did not want to eat dinner at home!

But- you can be too cheap. And my birthday meal, tortellini with gorgozola sauce, broccolini, wine, ice cream sandwich and after dinner coffee- was a wonderful luxury. There I was, warm and slightly overfed, safe from the pounding hail and chill air.

So remember, $280/month is $2800/year! That really good food eaten at home, or prepared at home. It is also about $100K for your retirement!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

East vs West- and housing!

The Oregonian recently published an article about global warming, in which it was postulated that Eastern Oregon, already a high plain desert, will continue to get drier and drier, leading to crop failure and desertion of towns. Yet, that is not the whole story.
What is interesting is the desertification issue- the fact that irrigation and intense chemical fertisaltion can cause near desert conditions to become even more so. And of course, the development of parts of Eastern Oregon- Particularly Bend- was not touch on. All of these things lead to drying up of Eastern Oregon I think, and we really need to start to turn around the way dryland farming is done, in addition to watching emissions.

And now on my housing quest- I sent in my info for the grant/loan application, and I still need to get more info. Sigh.

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Sunday, April 1, 2007

With a fine view of the Social Security Office!

So I was walking about yesterday, after the sudden, strong spring rainstorm, in downtown Beaverton when I happened upon a sign for planning meetings for 13 townhomes. I went to the address where the proposal was for these townhomes- at 13000 2nd ave. The proposed name is 'The Village' with live work spaces. These proposed spaces will somehow be shoehorned in a slightly large lot, and will start at $600k!

Wow- $600K. For this, you will not only have ready access to the max ( a good four block walk) but also a thrilling view of the Social Security office and just kitty corner from the excellent Stars Caberet. For nature, you have the sight of a poorly pollarded cherry tree.

Now, in my humble opinion:

A better deal could be had at The Round, where you are at the max, with Mingo and Typhoon! just a walk downstairs. And it costs about half what this project would cost. ( Note: I do not work for nor do I intend to live at The Round or The Round II). Or in North/Northeast Portland where the Max runs. But 600K, in front of a sadly maintained cherry tree and the squat brick Social Security office, is not quite there, I think. The design necessary to make a work/live structure work in a constrained space, and the location ( which is not immediately foot friendly nor engaging with the sort of people you would like to engage with) certainly does not call for $600K. For the people who are able to to afford this, they know that they can go to the Round and get a better deal, with better foot traffic and access.