Friday, February 27, 2015

What's Next?

Come this spring, we will have been living in this house for more than 15 years -- and in Castle Rock for 27 years. Seven bedrooms. (No, I am not making that up.) Three full baths. Funny -- Zillow has us down as 3 bedrooms...
    Both daughters have been on their own now for about a decade. But the house really was too big for us back when they were living here, as well. A few things have kept us here:
     *The view is TERRIFIC -- about 50 miles in three different directions - and a rocky bluff in the fourth. Ask friends who've been here: it's a pleasure to sit out on the deck in the evening, and watch Life Going On.
     *The location couldn't be better, for a city person -- we're literally blocks from every sort of store you could wish from, from Home Depot to Sprouts (groceries) and Michael's. Etc. etc.
     *The downstairs half has been perfect for the Brickworks business. A separate entrance, a huge main room for teaching and lectures, side rooms with space for inventory...we could even put a kitchen in down there, if we needed to.

But we're feeling restless. 

The Brick's 60th birthday is a fond memory. Technically, he's got enough years in that he could retire tomorrow, if he wanted to. (He doesn't, not yet.) My work could go on forever, as long as I'm willing to travel and talk -- no pension to look forward though, like the Brick has to look forward to. And whatever income comes in on my side comes because I'm still working. (Besides, I don't want to retire either, not yet. I still have what we call Places to Go, People to See and Things to Do.)

We want to travel more. For longer periods.
We want to work on languages. Spanish, especially. (It's critical around here in the Denver area.)
We would like to visit family and friends for longer periods. Just a few days isn't cutting it anymore.

Then, of course, there's The Mama. Her health continues to be precarious. (And she refuses to consider moving from Michigan. I know. I brought the subject up again, this last visit.)

House sales are at a high here in Colorado. Demand is also at a high. But if we sell, where would we move that wouldn't entail spending extra $$?

Moving out of state is a possibility. We have strong family ties in Michigan, and they'd be thrilled. (But we both dislike Michigan's dreary gray skies and heavy humidity.)
    What if we went somewhere less populated? We both would like more land than what we live on now. Perhaps run some beef, or raise a pig -- meat prices are horrible. More room, more air...and Charley would love running on a bigger property.
    But moving would mean that the Brick would lose the work he enjoys so much. And what about contact with our girls, who both live in Colorado?

We've talked about an RV we'd park temporarily on friends' land. (The Brick did this for months as a teenager, while his parents built in North Carolina-- they ended up living in a barn that they converted eventually to a house. Never did actually build the house.) What about Brickworks inventory, then?

We've talked about a tiny house. (I am so intrigued by this concept.) Then again, what about Brickworks inventory? And what do I do about the business, meanwhile?

I've even considered living in a bus. (This girl sure makes it look like a possibility.)

Another possibility:  Living in two places. Somewhere warm (Florida or South America) for 6 months -- then coming back north to travel and see family/friends the rest of the year. We've scooted around the idea of Venice Beach, FL or Panama... Ecuador is currently on the Brick's horizon.

Neither of our families is particularly long-lived. (Heart trouble, mostly.) We have money saved. (Not a lot, but some.) And we're good at living frugally.

Do we go now -- or soon? 
Stay for a while? 
Sell now, while the market is good? 

So -- do we stay, or do we go?

The dilemma continues.


Denise Clausen said...

Hi Cindy... oh my, the dilemma! My DH has been reitred for 5 years and he recommends it highly! I am still quilting and all doing all the related activities. I am opening my own exhibit at Latimer on March 8-April. We ruminate about downsizing all the time. Portland is a lovely place and we could live downtown easily. Tiny houses are very populare here. Best of luck as you consider the possibilities. Denise

Cindy Brick said...

Good for you, Denise -- congratulations on your upcoming exhibit!

Funny -- we would do the opposite from you: move to a much-less-populated area. I just wish we could make a good decision now, without all this dithering.

thanks for writing, friend.

Writer's Lament

A young friend once sent her in-progress fantasy novel to me for review. I read it. Then, feeling virtuous and magnanimous, I all but...