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Zoe Girl
6-23-11, 2:27pm
I know that is not a typuical simple living question but I am wondering what kind of different things we would pick. I would expect not so many giant houses and vacations, hmm. Here is what I would do with even a moderate winning of money

* hire a housekeeper to clean twice a week
* hire a bookeeper to take care of these papers and bills!!!
* look at buying that tiny, adorable, beat up house down the street that is under $100K

I think I would still work my weekday job since I do love it, maybe be able to help my kids with school if they were putting in the effort they needed, get conversation partners to meet one goal of being tri-lingual, and do a retreat now and then. I would actually get a smaller house with money than a larger one.

kib
6-23-11, 2:50pm
A lot of the things in our life are "make do". I don't mind it most of the time, but constantly caring for some building, transport or appliance that's behaving like an aging and incontinent relative is getting old. I'd love to trade out some of our more cantankerous stuff for higher quality things. I'd also like to move - right now the economy is sort of sticking us in one place, a big infusion of free cash could do wonders for loosening our position.

Mrs. Hermit
6-23-11, 3:00pm
There are a lot of unemployed trades workers here, and I have MANY projects I want done on my place--win/win/win!!! The tradesmen would get work, and I would get things completed.

bke
6-23-11, 3:10pm
The first thing I would do would be to figure out a budget so that I never spent to the point that money was a problem again.

Indulgences would include simple oceanfront vacation time. Nothing fancy just simple, quiet pleasure.

I'd definitely move out of this God-forsaken-I mean lovely little state that I currently reside in. Someplace private but with lots of availabilty to anything I might desire.

Dh and I talk about this a lot and have decided we desire more than we have but very little in the grand sceme of things. A relatively small house and yard, 2 cars tops, maybe a pool and hot tub. I don't want more than I can maintain myself.

Quality vs quantity would be our style all the way...

benhyr
6-23-11, 3:20pm
Depends how much we're talking... maybe pay off he house, buy a SPIA, establish a scholarship, help out some charities.

militaryman
6-23-11, 4:13pm
Buy safer cars for my kids and wife ( maybe 20k used volvo's)

Probably would not be enough to warrant continuing to work so i can draw pension in 13 years but definitely give the wife the option to quit her job.

porcelain
6-23-11, 4:40pm
Quit my job, travel until I got sick of it (that would probably take a while) and then continue my line of work, but freelance, working from home in my undies. No idea where home would be, probably not where I am now because the biggest reason I am in this city is for my job.

treehugger
6-23-11, 4:54pm
Definitely go to school to get my looooong overdue degree.

Kara

peggy
6-23-11, 5:16pm
pay off my house:)

Alan
6-23-11, 5:29pm
I would become an eccentric. I'd build myself a kiln and learn to make bricks from the clay in my yard. I'd practice my masonry skills by building my shop from my bricks. I'd create atrocious art and write non-sensical songs. I'd acquire a block of limestone and slowly chip it away until the form hidden inside came out, or I ran out of limestone.
I'd try my hand at making scarecrows and furniture and guitars. I'd write books that no one would read and carve toothpicks from trees. I'd make arrows for my home-made bow and shoot them at bales of hay. I'd dig a well by hand and line it with my bricks. I'd do whatever came to mind without care of how it came out. And then I'd come here and argue.

Gina
6-23-11, 6:17pm
I'd probably invest most of it. I already have what I need, do mostly what I want, and prefer a relatively simple life. But more money in the bank would give me a greater sense of security.

If I had to spend some of it, I'd redo the kitchen, and do some other 'delayed maintainance' around the house.

rodeosweetheart
6-23-11, 6:21pm
Hmm. I'd buy a farm and get another horse or two. I would pay off my kids' college loans. I would put aside small trust for each kid. I would renovate farm house to accomodat emy aging parents. I would buy my husband a nicer piano and take a family trip to Scandinavia. I would get another masters degree in a new field and enjoy my work more. Hhmm. I seem to have won a LOT of money!:cool:

Tenngal
6-23-11, 6:41pm
I want to go hang out at Alan's house. Sounds like he has fun plans..........I'd like to tour all the National parks by car......without worrying about the price of gas.

Sad Eyed Lady
6-23-11, 6:53pm
I would become an eccentric. I'd build myself a kiln and learn to make bricks from the clay in my yard. I'd practice my masonry skills by building my shop from my bricks. I'd create atrocious art and write non-sensical songs. I'd acquire a block of limestone and slowly chip it away until the form hidden inside came out, or I ran out of limestone.
I'd try my hand at making scarecrows and furniture and guitars. I'd write books that no one would read and carve toothpicks from trees. I'd make arrows for my home-made bow and shoot them at bales of hay. I'd dig a well by hand and line it with my bricks. I'd do whatever came to mind without care of how it came out. And then I'd come here and argue.
Sounds like a good idea to me!

rosarugosa
6-23-11, 8:54pm
Haha Alan! But you don't have to be rich to be eccentric, although when you're poor, folks are more likely to just call you weird :)
I would definitely finish our humble abode (new roof, kitchen, and not much else), even if I had zillions. It's been a focus of our life for so long, that I can't imagine abandoning the goal. Then I would like to be one of those guerilla gardeners, and go around planting gardens wherever one was needed - gardens of the elderly, or the black-thumbed, median strips, empty lots, etc.
Alan, you can do the garden sculptures if you would like.

kib
6-23-11, 9:24pm
I would become an eccentric. I'd build myself a kiln and learn to make bricks from the clay in my yard. I'd practice my masonry skills by building my shop from my bricks. I'd create atrocious art and write non-sensical songs. I'd acquire a block of limestone and slowly chip it away until the form hidden inside came out, or I ran out of limestone.
I'd try my hand at making scarecrows and furniture and guitars. I'd write books that no one would read and carve toothpicks from trees. I'd make arrows for my home-made bow and shoot them at bales of hay. I'd dig a well by hand and line it with my bricks. I'd do whatever came to mind without care of how it came out. And then I'd come here and argue.Oh, my life? :~)

razz
6-23-11, 9:32pm
I'd probably invest most of it. I already have what I need, do mostly what I want, and prefer a relatively simple life. But more money in the bank would give me a greater sense of security.

If I had to spend some of it, I'd redo the kitchen, and do some other 'delayed maintainance' around the house.

Sounds like me. We are doing the maintenance gradually but it would be nice to speed up the process. I would pay off the kids' mortgages.

Travel to the Arctic/Yukon and Newfoundland are on my wish list. I have seen every other part of Canada to my great joy.

iris lily
6-23-11, 10:48pm
whot kinda money we talkin' about here?

It would have to be a LOT for any big lifestyle change. Maybe half a million, and we'll talk.

porcelain
6-23-11, 10:53pm
I would become an eccentric. I'd build myself a kiln and learn to make bricks from the clay in my yard. I'd practice my masonry skills by building my shop from my bricks. I'd create atrocious art and write non-sensical songs. I'd acquire a block of limestone and slowly chip it away until the form hidden inside came out, or I ran out of limestone.
I'd try my hand at making scarecrows and furniture and guitars. I'd write books that no one would read and carve toothpicks from trees. I'd make arrows for my home-made bow and shoot them at bales of hay. I'd dig a well by hand and line it with my bricks. I'd do whatever came to mind without care of how it came out. And then I'd come here and argue.

LOLLLL Alan!!! Party at your house, definitely.

Kathy WI
6-23-11, 11:37pm
I would pay Alan to make me some atrocious art, scarecrows, furniture, and guitars, and pay him to make me a bow and arrows, and sit in the shade with a cool drink watching him dig a well by hand. I would shoot arrows at the moon.

Then I would either buy a house with two bathrooms or add another bathroom to this house. I'd buy myself a car so I could get the heck out of here once in awhile. I would buy the house next door and have somebody (maybe Alan) build a tunnel from our basement to the basement of the house next door. That house would be a tricked out party house with big TVs and games and a music studio. I'd pay somebody (maybe Alan) to clean up the party house after we mess it up.

Alan
6-23-11, 11:43pm
I would pay Alan to make me some atrocious art, scarecrows, furniture, and guitars, and pay him to make me a bow and arrows, and sit in the shade with a cool drink watching him dig a well by hand. I would shoot arrows at the moon.

Then I would either buy a house with two bathrooms or add another bathroom to this house. I'd buy myself a car so I could get the heck out of here once in awhile. I would buy the house next door and have somebody (maybe Alan) build a tunnel from our basement to the basement of the house next door. That house would be a tricked out party house with big TVs and games and a music studio. I'd pay somebody (maybe Alan) to clean up the party house after we mess it up.

If I did those things for pay, I'd be a common wage slave instead of an eccentric/bohemian/semi-skilled artisan without a care in the world. Where's the fun in that?

Kathy WI
6-23-11, 11:47pm
Okay then I won't pay you, I'll just watch.

ApatheticNoMore
6-24-11, 4:05am
I don't know, I have in effect "won" money in my life before. It relieves financial stress (I'm not even going to deny that part, that's a real effect) but other than that I'm not sure my problems are solved by such smaller amounts of money. (This may be life whapping me hard over the head with the reality that my problems aren't just monetary).

I mean yes, if I won enough never to work again ever, maybe I'd never stress about working again (although I might work). And that would be very nice indeed. If I won enough to buy houses in southern CA without batting an eye for cash maybe I'd pick one up. But I actually find "if I won millions" discussions INCREDIBLY DEPRESSING as they are just so much of a sad distraction from real life and any real opportunities that may exist. Yea, supposed to be lighthearted I know, but ...

Merski
6-24-11, 9:01am
I'd pay off the mortgage and put some $ into the landscaping of our newly-built house (we ran out of $ for landscaping) perhaps a trip and definitely saving/investing. If it was a wicked lot of $, I'd quit my job!

Stella
6-24-11, 10:59am
LOL, you guys are fun!

Hmmm. I would, of course, donate money to charity. Then I'd pay off my Dad's HELOC, which I will be paying off in exchange for this house anyway in a few years and I'd pay off his car. He could pay these outright himself today if he wanted to, so it's not a charity kind of thing, just a "thanks" kind of thing.

I'd fix this house up, that's for sure. I'd get hardwood and tile everywhere. No more carpet in the living room and bedrooms. With four little kids carpet is my enemy. :) I'd add on a sunroom to the back of the house too. I've always wanted that. And I'd put a murphy bed in it for company. I love murphy beds. I'd redo the family room for the kids. I might even put a slide from their level to the family room. I've always wanted to have a slide in my house. I'd also put in a dumbwaiter. This is a six level house. It needs a freaking dumbwaiter. Oh and a secret passage. I've always wanted to live in a house with a secret passage.

I'd buy my great-aunt's house and still let her live there. Once she was gone I'd keep it as our cabin and build a bunkhouse for the kids.

I'd buy an RV and a sailboat and go on adventures with the family. I would also pay someone to clean my house.

iris lily
6-24-11, 11:29am
Well, one thing I'd do is to buy a condo in a pre-war building, one of those units with a posh lobby and a building sup and wonderful plasterwork on the ceiling and hardwood floors and tiny pre-war closets. No pets would EVER be allowed to come to my high rise pad away from home. DH could come, he's neat and tidy, but not these freakin' cats and dogs.

kib
6-24-11, 12:02pm
Lol. Iris, do you ever have an irrational moment of talking to a pet and thinking/saying, "why don't you ever clean up after yourself!?" Every so often I have moments of dottiness when I am just as keenly resentful toward the four legged family members for this continual mess as the two legged ones. I think I'd buy specialized beach ball bubbles for the pets.

Spartana
6-24-11, 2:55pm
I HAD always planned on getting rid of everything (houses, cars, stuff) and doing the ultra-low-budget grundgy backpacker style travel around the world for several years at a time thing, staying in hostels, etc... But after inheriting 2 dogs when my Dad passed away I can't do that. So I would use that money to still do that dream. Get rid of everything and rent vacation houses for several months at a time in various places around the world and take the dogs with me. They even have international dog-passports for travel between the EU countries. It would be more of a hassle and expense but having that money would make it doable. I could even have enough to hire Sven, the hunky dog walker, to be my travek compainion :-)

RosieTR
6-25-11, 7:59pm
I suppose it depends on how much we're talking about. Winning a few tens of thousands would speed up our plans to get out of Phoenix, or at least pay for the move plus the fixing-up the house/yard probably needs to make it into a viable rental. For the ballpark of $100K, we'd just sell the Phx house asap and use the rest as a cushion while we looked for job in CO. For several hundreds of thousands or more, we'd do the following:
Ship the big or important stuff, drive up to Flagstaff, donate the older car and backpack our way to CO stopping to see friends along the way. Then look for a job. For FI levels of money (over $1million) we'd do that but then I'd do some urban farming/beekeeping/etc for fun.

ApatheticNoMore
6-25-11, 9:11pm
I've decided if I won the money, forget buying a house here, I don't really want it. Really. I WOULD however like to buy some vacant urban land, to grow things on myself and to turn the rest into a sort of community garden to benefit various community groups I'm affiliated with.

Maxamillion
6-26-11, 1:27am
I would finish paying off my student loan, then a few other more minor bills. Go traveling. Buy my own place. Get an electric car. Get a gym membership. Buy a house for my mom. Go canoeing. Go scuba diving.

Paige
7-6-11, 2:07am
Alan, I think this sounds like a poem! These are things that people in the U.S. could also do if they had health care!
Kara, anyone who says "long overdue" needs to go back to school. I hope you can get financial aid and go for it! Thinking about you!

jennipurrr
7-7-11, 11:27am
I actually won some money through a free contest recently...it wasn't a huge sum (several thousand dollars after taxes), but was enough to make us sit down and say, ok what are we going to do with this? In the end, we used $400 to for travel, then just followed our plan with what we would have done with regular savings that comes in at smaller amounts, which right now means building up our emergency fund after decreasing it due to our home repairs. Following the plan is pretty important to us, and next in line is our mortgage, so it would take a large sum of money to make me really have to think hard about what to do with it.

If we came into more than 100K, the mortgage and DH's last student loan would be paid off...then I could think about the fun stuff! I would do practical things like max out the retirement accounts this year and next, and give some to charities that are important to me. Then I would plan some really great trips. I love the National Parks idea! It would also make me pause and really think about if I am doing what I want to do in my life...right now I enjoy my job, but if I came into FI kind of money I would probably pursue a different path.

larknm
7-19-11, 12:46pm
Pay off mortgage, get electric car, travel or move or both.

Perplexa
7-26-11, 1:38pm
In approximate order of priority (and amount of money won):

1) Pay off my student loans
2) Buy/build a small (not tiny), but well thought out house
3) Set aside enough money to support us if needed.
4) Make sure our families are cared for
5) Start a foundation to fund creative experiments in alternative education and Montessori schools for low income kids.

Actually, I'd probably happily skip everything but the last, but the amount of money I'd need to make that worth the trouble would make all the others seem like peanuts anyway.

Zigzagman
7-26-11, 2:14pm
I would buy enough solar panels to be completely energy independent. My place is just begging for solar panels!! I have a cordwood house, a 40 X 100 barn with a perfect N/S footprint, etc. It just looks like it would fit the landscape.

BTW - it would have to be a lot of money because they are mucho expensive. >:(

Peace

peggy
7-26-11, 3:16pm
Oh yea! Solar! me too me too!

Stella
7-26-11, 9:07pm
Another thing I forgot. I would pay someone to do my laundry and clean my house daily. And watch the kids for one hour at 2pm so I could take a nap.

The solar thing would be good too, but then I'd also have to pay my dad not to rant about it. :)

smurfybabe
8-10-11, 10:52pm
I would take a few months for a road trip around the US, always wanted to do that. Then I'd come home, buy a bigger house and start fostering children. I'd keep enough in the bank to keep us going, give some as gifts to family and donate the rest to local organizations.

sweetana3
8-11-11, 6:41am
Dreaming here. If I won a couple of million dollars, I would endow our local spay neuter clinic. Thier motto is "the solution lies in prevention".