Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Two Shelves

My wife and I decided not to exchange gifts this year. We bought a house, new appliances, and have a major renovation underway. We have felt the related cash drain from these expenses and didn't feel adding another trinket would make our lives better. Rather than trinkets, we decided to create our dream closet in the master bedroom. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! Enjoy that extra cookie. Take the last piece of pie. Sleep an extra hour. And most importantly, drink the extra drink. Apparently it's not too tough to find childcare in the winter:

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Jobs: What to do next?

Upon my full-time return home, I'm going to need a job of some sort. We simply don't have enough passive income to survive and have a $40k renovation project underway. I'll likely take a few months off between gigs, but have started the mental exercise of what I can do to make money.

Monday, December 17, 2012

The Stock Market: Probability In Action

The stock market moves up and down every minute, day, and week. The movements appear to be random, and there have been books and academic studies proving this to be true. Now, I'm no academic but I am a professional investor. I have a vastly different explanation: divergent opinions on probabilities of outcomes.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Things that go "BUMP" in the night

Last night around midnight my two dogs started barking uncontrollably. While taking breaks to breathe, they tilted their heads listening for the source of the gigantic "THUD" sound across the house. I figured it was well enough to ignore, but the pups kept listening and my wife corroborated their intrigue. My wife was nearly in tears, full of fear, mainly driven by the dogs not accepting the discontinuance of the sound.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Currency Trading

I got into currency trading earlier this year after getting fed up with my employer's policies regarding equity trading. In order to make a stock trade, I must navigate through an hour's worth of requests and approvals through three or four layers of corporate goodness. After getting approval, I cannot re-trade the security for 30 days. I'm all for long-term investing, but being trapped in a loser for 30 days is bogus.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Special Dividends & New Buy

Two of my larger holdings announced special dividends to be paid before year end. I'm VERY excited about getting these payments. I've been a holder of both of these companies for about 3 years (my entire investment career) and am happy as a clam with how I've been treated as a shareholder.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Moved - New House is Now Home

We spent all day Saturday and Sunday moving our stuff into our new house back home. We had to get 2 gigantic moving trucks, which was unexpected. We made a trip Saturday figuring we'd pick up the little that we couldn't fit on Sunday...but BOY WERE WE OPTIMISTIC! We ended up renting another giant truck and filling it nearly to the brim. I bet professional movers could have gotten the stuff in the truck on the first trip, but such is life. It felt amazing to sleep on my own mattress in my new house. Sitting here in the Big City now, I'm sad to be gone. I return Friday night to my wonderful place back home.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Walking into the laundry room in the basement, I had always noticed a bad smell. I figured it was some remnant of a former owner or had something to do with being such a water-logged environment. After having the house ozoned, which removes all smells, the smell still lingered. After some investigation, the culprit was a gas pipe with a bit of a leak. Even further snooping led to another gas leak.

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Importance of a Good View

As I've said before, what pushed my wife and I over the edge from wanting to go home "someday" to making the move now is the property at a great price that came up for sale. The place is/was not in good shape, at least aesthetically. The walls had cheap wood paneling. The bathrooms were dirty and outdated. I mean the previous owner left a ton of his old, dirty furniture for us to dispose of. So aesthetics did not make the sale. The bones of the home are great. We like the amount of space, size of the rooms, and overall layout. We will change some walls and room locations, but more for design choices than necessity. The real thing that made us buy now was the view. The entire back of the house is windows. We overlook the local golf course, so the great view will never be taken away. It's not often that properties with this type of view come up for sale, especially at attractive prices. Because the house's overall size and layout fits both our needs and wants, we felt it was worth the endeavor to basically gut the place and make the move back home now. We have spent our first few weekends of ownership ripping stuff out. We move in this weekend and will begin putting the place back together in the coming months. I work in an office with no windows, so the view matters to me.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Frailty of Life

My mom was diagnosed with skin cancer last week. This is her second bout with the ugly monster after surviving cancer-free for over 10 years. She is not coping with the news very well. They took a sample of the questionable spot on her cheek and will remove the rest of the tissue just before Thanksgiving. She will have a 2-inch scar. I don't have much doubt that she'll survive the cancer and the procedure is not too invasive. She and my dad won't be bothered by the scar as they will simply be happy she's alive.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012