What I’ve learned

28 Aug

imageThere was a time when I lived in tiny, down-trodden little houses, because they were all I could afford. Little houses, right downtown, that someone else owned and I rented. It was my son and me for 20 years, with me fixing them up to meet my artistic sensibilities and to have working lights, sinks without rust running from faucet to drain, doors that closed and locked, and heavy drapes to stave off the cold and hold in the meager heat generated by the gas heaters in the winter. I wished for a bigger house, with central air & heat, a big kitchen and a swimming pool – someday.

I have finally lived in THAT house, having bought it to fix-and-flip…and after 10 years of fixing it up we are ready to sell. A clever friend called it, “a long, slow flip.”  Has a sexy ring to it, doesn’t it? For ten years we have been taking care of everything. Absolutely everything. And now we both look forward to down-sizing and renting!

And we are thinking carefully about what we want in the future. Which brought me to the thought today that I am glad that I’ve never been a big consumer. The more you have, the more you have to care for. The more you own, the more it owns you!

We are inundated with ads everywhere we look encouraging us to buy, buy, buy. Spend, spend, spend! Resist, if you can. Buy less. Buy quality. Focus on what’s most important – be it family, friends, learning, or freedom.

What I have learned is that rather than wishing for a big house, with a pool, and a boat, and a vacation home…wish for good friends with those things, in wonderful locales – and go visit them!

imageAnd, always be the perfect guest – so you will get invited back.

How to be a perfect guest?

  1. Always bring your hosts an elegant gift that you know they’d enjoy.
  2. Never complain. About anything.
  3. Always help with the dishes.
  4. Don’t stay too long. (My dear Mom always said, “Company, even good company, is like garbage. After 3 days it starts to stink.”)
  5. Ask if you can strip the bed on the day you are leaving. (Some hosts don’t want to deal with a pile of sheets and towels right then.)
  6. Always send a sincere thank-you note as soon as possible.

So, I am putting you all on notice: as soon as our house sells and we buy our RV, we can come visit you. You know we have learned the art of being good guests…

XO Donna


9 Responses to “What I’ve learned”

  1. Nancy August 28, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

    I always love your posts, Donna. It’s about time I told you that!

    • oneoklock August 28, 2014 at 7:12 pm #

      Thank you so much for the sweet feedback. Wow! XO

  2. Jillian August 28, 2014 at 10:55 pm #

    Florida is waiting for you. Hurry on down.

  3. Gary Leggiere August 29, 2014 at 8:03 pm #

    You hit the nail on the head Donna. Thanks for the wisdom!
    Love, Gary & Rhona

    • oneoklock August 30, 2014 at 7:51 am #

      Thank you, Gary and Rhona! By the way, I do have your current address, don’t I ? 😉

  4. Deanna Russ August 30, 2014 at 10:35 pm #

    By the time you, your honey and your RV come to visit us, I am going to have created the perfect cocktail named…”the long, slow flip”.

    • Donna August 31, 2014 at 9:23 am #

      We are both laughing – what a fantastic idea!
      And a great topic for a blog! My mouth is watering, we will see you soon. XO

  5. emilyruss98 November 18, 2014 at 8:38 am #

    Cant wait for you to come up again, or for myself to come down… Cannot wait for that plane ticket from you. XOXO, Em 🙂

    • oneoklock November 21, 2014 at 7:56 am #

      I sure hope you can make that happen, Emily! You do your work at school and I’ll do my work to get my book published, and we will celebrate with a lovely lunch together in Austin…….my treat!
      XO Donna

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