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Thread: Why Houston is more prone to flooding than ever

  1. #11
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Williamsmith View Post
    I am going to chip in where he allows me. I will invest in him. He is more of the future than I am.
    I understand your feelings. Your son/DIL are lucky to have you.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
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  2. #12
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    It is a heartbreaking scenario for all to go through.

    On a very tiny scale - in the mid 80's, we had a huge storm go through and demolish about 10-12 properties on a popular Lake Erie shoreline. It was decided to forbid rebuilding so the land sits vacant and poorly tended. The owners have sold, inherited etc but it is a no-man's land that gets discussed at a municipal council meeting regularly without resolution. The owners want to rebuild and possibly dispose of their property at a profit saying that the one-time storm was a non-recurring fluke. The governing body says that the shoreline is regularly rearranged due to storms and another severe storm will recur and the municipality will be responsible for allowing the building.
    Once lowlands are inappropriately developed it is a huge problem to undo.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by catherine View Post
    I understand your feelings. Your son/DIL are lucky to have you.
    Of course they are! And please know that I get it, the wanting to help, the frantic desire to make things right for your children when they have suffered an enormous loss.

    I came to the realization that I no longer had the means to make things right for my children. It does not mean I will not ever help them. I gave each of them a sum of money-- two used it as a downpayment for a house, and my desire to do this was prompted by my desire to give my grandchildren homes. I am helping the other son to invest the same amount so that some day, if he is in a position to do so, he can also buy a house.

    I feel strongly that if I do for one,I need to be able to do for the others, so that the resources are evenly spread out. That s one issue for me.

    I would also like to be able to help my grandchildren, as I feel responsibility for them,too.

    Another issue for me is that I have disabilities that make it pretty impossible to find a new full time job, along with no pension, no healthcare -- I know that is different for you, williamsmith, and that is wonderful. But I do not have a pension of any kind, or any access to healthcare from former employer.

    I love my children very much. I wonder sometimes if by giving them downpayments for the houses, I made a mistake--I think they both bought houses too quickly, and I wouldnot have borrowed the money they borrowed at that stage in my life. But I did it as you say, as an investment in their future.

    But what they do with that future is up to them,and I can't solve problems for them anymore. Gosh, I wish I could. I would love to be able to give them everything.

    But if I give them all I have saved, then how will I care for myself? Will I just be a burden on them?

    I always think of the play King Lear. Lots of life lessons in that play.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Williamsmith's Avatar
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    In some ways, wealth seems to get in the way of charity. Some of the most giving people I knew or now know were/are some of the least affluent. It's easy to cling to wealth as a life preserver but in reality we can withhold funds here and need them there...all unplanned more often than not. If you are well off enough to employ the services of a financial planner, I guess that's either the sign of a very diligent saver or a hard worker or one lucky sob. But earning that money seemed hard .....not as hard as deciding what to do with it though. And in end stages of life, all that meticulous planning seems to have gotten you to just the edge of the cliff where someon is waiting to use up the last dime and push you over. So, I guess I just would rather dole it out so that when I lie down at night I'm not hashing over who is going to get the benefit of what resource. That seems like the lazy man's way, I will fully admit. I'd rather do that than go to the casino, remodel the bathroom and kitchen a third time or go get that Cadillac SUV that parks itself, stops itself and warms your buttocks in the winter.

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    Between my DH and I we have 5 sons and have helped all of them some financially. WE would always let them live with us, etc as long as they were being responsible. That being said I will not sacrifice my standard of living to help them. I gave them help when younger and needed it like my parents did but not overboard. Now is my time to enjoy, take vacations, eat out, have new experiences.

  6. #16
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Tybee, each of us does what we can when we can in the manner as seems wisest to each of us.

    Like you, I gave my kids freedom from expense in the post-secondary education within my budget; when I had more funds, I gave each a lump sum to invest; I made sure that the home that I purchased has a room for each family in case of serious need; now I take care that I live within my means and ensure that I am not a burden on either of them. To each their own path of wisdom....
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Williamsmith View Post
    In some ways, wealth seems to get in the way of charity. Some of the most giving people I knew or now know were/are some of the least affluent. It's easy to cling to wealth as a life preserver but in reality we can withhold funds here and need them there...all unplanned more often than not. If you are well off enough to employ the services of a financial planner, I guess that's either the sign of a very diligent saver or a hard worker or one lucky sob. But earning that money seemed hard .....not as hard as deciding what to do with it though. And in end stages of life, all that meticulous planning seems to have gotten you to just the edge of the cliff where someon is waiting to use up the last dime and push you over. So, I guess I just would rather dole it out so that when I lie down at night I'm not hashing over who is going to get the benefit of what resource. That seems like the lazy man's way, I will fully admit. I'd rather do that than go to the casino, remodel the bathroom and kitchen a third time or go get that Cadillac SUV that parks itself, stops itself and warms your buttocks in the winter.
    I can't relate to your examples here, but maybe that is because I don't have enough money to do the things you talk about here--casinos, bathroom remodels, self-parking Cadillacs--and I don't expect that I ever will. I don't see it as a dichotomy--money to waste vs. money to give one's kids. Right now we do not lives as full lives as my kids do, as we can't afford to do the things they do. They earn more than we do, have better health care, better houses, and better prospects. And I am glad for that! But I still want to give them things and give my grandchildren money for their futures.

    I guess as Razz says it all depends on where you are in life, what path. I worry about making what I have last, and having enough to buy food and shelter and heat the rest of my life and my husband's life. I don't have enough to give them my savings because that money is earmarked to provide those things. We already don't do things like go to the doctor and buy medication because we can't afford it these days.

    Maybe if America gets universal health care, we can all relax a little. I don't see it as doling out money, I see it as sharing resources when the needs are great.

    And yes, it is all very personal, and depends on your family resources and your family dynamics.

    I am very glad your son and his wife made it out okay. Thank God, and I hope FEMA comes through for them, and I hope their jobs will survive.

  8. #18
    Senior Member Williamsmith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tybee View Post
    I can't relate to your examples here, but maybe that is because I don't have enough money to do the things you talk about here--casinos, bathroom remodels, self-parking Cadillacs--and I don't expect that I ever will. I don't see it as a dichotomy--money to waste vs. money to give one's kids. Right now we do not lives as full lives as my kids do, as we can't afford to do the things they do. They earn more than we do, have better health care, better houses, and better prospects. And I am glad for that! But I still want to give them things and give my grandchildren money for their futures.

    I guess as Razz says it all depends on where you are in life, what path. I worry about making what I have last, and having enough to buy food and shelter and heat the rest of my life and my husband's life. I don't have enough to give them my savings because that money is earmarked to provide those things. We already don't do things like go to the doctor and buy medication because we can't afford it these days.

    Maybe if America gets universal health care, we can all relax a little. I don't see it as doling out money, I see it as sharing resources when the needs are great.

    And yes, it is all very personal, and depends on your family resources and your family dynamics.

    I am very glad your son and his wife made it out okay. Thank God, and I hope FEMA comes through for them, and I hope their jobs will survive.
    To be clear, those things I mentioned are not reasonably within my budget. But I know people who were fortunate to have inherited sums of money, or did not raise three kids or were duel income no kids couples. They do. I just watched my neighbor remodel a perfectly good bathroom, tile the entire place and add crown molding throughout. They took a Viking River Cruise in Germany, Austria while it was being done. The neighbor on the other side inherited two commercial farms and the income generated from those. They just got sick of their 150k recreational vehicle and sold it because it was in storage 50 weeks out of the year.

    His is not to bash well off people. Not at all. Perhaps some jealousy yes. I do not know what they do with their money otherwise and it may be that they are very philanthropic.


    Which is to say also that I fully understand your situation as far as you have explained it and you owe no one reasons for it. I wish you could be afforded the comfort of reasonably priced healthcare. That would certainly go along way to counter the angst many feel about positioning oneself for retirement and a legacy.

    No I use coupons, I buy on sale, I turn down my thermostat in the winter and use fans instead of air conditioning. I do my own taxes on a 1040EZ. Whatever you may hear about public servant pensions....mine is only redeeming in its healthcare.

    My choice is...what is mine is my kids. I can trust them with that. I came from very little and I suppose that is what I will return to.

  9. #19
    Senior Member flowerseverywhere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Williamsmith View Post
    To be clear, those things I mentioned are not reasonably within my budget. But I know people who were fortunate to have inherited sums of money, or did not raise three kids or were duel income no kids couples. They do. I just watched my neighbor remodel a perfectly good bathroom, tile the entire place and add crown molding throughout. They took a Viking River Cruise in Germany, Austria while it was being done. The neighbor on the other side inherited two commercial farms and the income generated from those. They just got sick of their 150k recreational vehicle and sold it because it was in storage 50 weeks out of the year.

    His is not to bash well off people. Not at all. Perhaps some jealousy yes. I do not know what they do with their money otherwise and it may be that they are very philanthropic.


    Which is to say also that I fully understand your situation as far as you have explained it and you owe no one reasons for it. I wish you could be afforded the comfort of reasonably priced healthcare. That would certainly go along way to counter the angst many feel about positioning oneself for retirement and a legacy.

    No I use coupons, I buy on sale, I turn down my thermostat in the winter and use fans instead of air conditioning. I do my own taxes on a 1040EZ. Whatever you may hear about public servant pensions....mine is only redeeming in its healthcare.

    My choice is...what is mine is my kids. I can trust them with that. I came from very little and I suppose that is what I will return to.
    Interesting side story. We have some neighbors who bought their house when it was new. They liked the neighborhood and basic house. Before they moved in they replaced the never walked on carpets, and all the kitchen cabinets and countertops. Sometimes people do things I would not even think of. But it is their money.

    I really hope hope the best for you and your son.

  10. #20
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    WS: maybe you and your wife should do some traveling, etc and other things that you would both enjoy while both still healthy. YOu gave your kids a good start and now they have some adult decisions to make. Everyone has financial setbacks and dealing with them makes people stronger.

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