Times They Are a Changing

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The past ten years have been a wild ride and it looks like it isn't over yet. I moved to Montana from Minnesota about ten years ago. I was scared, lonely, and bewildered. Depression had pretty much ruined my life.  Moving to Montana was only to be a temporary thing.  I was going to clear my head and then move back. I didn't quite work out that way. Mr. Bernie and I became a couple. We worked together. We became involved in the community. We got married. We bought a house. We took trips. We celebrated weddings & births and mourned deaths. We took on new crafts. We made new friends. We held/hold offices on boards. So many things we have found to keep ourselves busy. Some days we look at each other and wonder what happened to the times we were able to just sit around like slugs and not worry about much more important than our next cribbage game. My first six years in Billings were difficult. I had NO friends, none. I had the folks who came to work and who were nice to me. Yet, I … [Read more...]

~Bernie

I Want to Marry My Credit Union

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When I lived in Minnesota, I assumed Credit Unions were only for special folks. Teachers, Nurses, People who raise poodles and wore wool socks. I didn't realize that anyone could belong to a Credit Union until I moved to Montana. It's not a secret club that only the elite could bank at. Anyone can belong. How cool is that? Before I moved to Montana I had really bad depression. The kind that causes you to lose your job because you didn't want to get out of bed. The kind that caused all your mail to pile up on your porch and go unread. When you don't read mail, you don't realize that your account is empty. Yet, you still have checks, so you must have money. Right? Not necessarily. When you bank at a big national bank, they are very quick to charge overcharge fees. So when you are overdrawn,  you get even more overdrawn. You can't talk to the bank and they have no idea who in the heck you are. All of those factors cause your credit score to plummet quickly. Once I moved to Montana, … [Read more...]

~Bernie

Dear Ms. Know it All

This morning I'm doing my first writing prompt. The Lighting and the Lighting-Bug suggest a writing prompt each week. This weeks prompt was writing a letter to yourself at 16.   Dear Ms. Know it All, You are 16 and think you know everything. You think that your life is planned out exactly the way you want it to be. Well think again. I'm just going to share a few tips and words of wisdom for you. Chances are you will ignore it. Just like you think you always know everything and plow head first.  I have a little list of things to watch out for. You will meet your fist love at 17. That won't work out. You will remain friends, on and off. He will be romantic and you will meet in a cute way. Depression is going to be a companion on and off for years. Not a fun one to have. It will cause you to lose things you can't afford nor want to lose. When you date a man and he cheats on you don't go back. Especially, if he has a baby with someone else. The second time you break up … [Read more...]

~Bernie

Why Can’t We Buy a House Without a Roof?

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I'm sorry that I didn't get to any of your blogs yesterday.This morning I plan on getting caught up on your comments as well. It might not be this morning, but it will be today.   I was in a bit of a mini funk. Not sure why. It's not as if I had PMS or a fight with the Mr. or anything. I just woke up and didn't feel my usual perky and upbeat self. I knew it was bad when Mr. Bernie noticed as soon as he got up. I guess because I didn't start prattling at him the minute he woke up. It wasn't like I was trying to hang myself in the shower and he noticed and asked what was wrong.  He is hyper-sensitive about making sure I don't slide into a depression. He lived with it and it scared the heck out of him. I'll explain why. Almost three years ago we decided we were done renting. We wanted a house of our own. Mr. Bernie wanted a garden. I just wanted to get out of duplex living. We also had Mr. Bernie's brother living with us. The duplex was perfect for one person when Mr. Bernie rented it. … [Read more...]

~Bernie