I’ve never been an avid gardener, but I enjoy having a garden. I like the space, the colours, the scents and the birdsong. My problem is I have two acres of ‘garden’ that needs ongoing attention. No longer can I weed, spray, prune, dig, plant or even mow. I could probably handle a small lawn where it would be similar to pushing a walking frame with a motor but two acres is a big ask. Even a ride-on gives out too much noise, too much internal shake-up and it can be quite hot work.
So, the choice was simple – solve that problem or move house. And I like my house. Apart from it suiting our needs, it is a familiar haven where I can move about with a lot more ease. And there’s a lot of stress and expense in selling, buying, packing up and moving. So I have a little man come in every two or three weeks.
Now, I’m guessing some readers will be saying, “Yeah, yeah, but I couldn’t afford that” – and my reply is, “Yeah, yeah, but I can’t afford not to do that.” Tim turns up, mows with a ride-on and hand mower, sprays any weeds and trims anything that obviously needs trimming and does a tip run with the rubbish. He also doesn’t mind cleaning gutters or changing tap washers or other stuff that I find tricky. The usual charge in $165, and “No, no, I couldn’t afford that” at the time. So I invented something to bring me in a few extra dollars. I do this by assisting people with writing wedding speeches. I only do one every week or three and it takes just a couple of hours. My fee, coincidentally, is $165. I certainly couldn’t get the gardening done in that time! Here’s a link – www.WeddingWriter.com.au.
Of course, not everyone has the luck or skill to invent an additional income stream but there are other ways to raise less than $10 a day – give up smoking, look for supermarket specials or even hit the bank up for a loan. The way I see it, selling and buying now would cost a heap in stamp duty and commission etc – well in excess of the cost of a few year’s outsourced mowing. And, in a few years, the kids will be self-supporting. That will mean fewer ongoing expenses and possibly a much better reason to look at relocating to a smaller, more manageable property. Good Lord willing and if the creeks don’t rise, the increase in property prices would make an extended mortgage negligible.
Everyone with MS will encounter different hurdles but if they are faced as problems that can always be overcome, you will always be moving forward. (Note to self, must send that phrase to Julia Gillard – she might find it useful at the next election!)
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