This is a fun follow up to “F.D.I.C.” last week

When I was young and growing up, I wanted “stuff”!  I asked Santa for “Chatty Cathy Doll” for Christmas, then a pony from my dad.  Finally, when I was an adult and all grown up at 16 (I thought) I yearned for that car.  That dream would whisk me away from the ever seeing eyes of my parents. The absolute dream of every kid I knew growing up in the 70’s.  My kids assure me that, even today, it was their dream.  I worked every summer from 6th grade saving every dime, nickel, quarter and dollar I could put my hand on from walking beans to detaseling corn. I had seen my sister drive off in a 1965 Chevy Malibu that we decorated with “Rickie Tickie Stickie’s” in 1966.  My oldest brother received a 62 Chevy Biscayne in 1969, a real beauty with red cloth interior.

My father had bought it from our great uncle after he had bought a new green Ford Maverick.  Ugh, I hoped that wasn’t the car I would get to drive in five years.  Then my other brother got the Biscayne a year later and my older brother bought 68 Dodge Charger,gold w olive green vinyl roof.  My brother, who had inherited the black Biscayne, talked my dad into trading it for a bronze brown 71 Dodge Challenger. The salesman had told my dad that it had belonged to a retired old-maid school teacher (Dad believed him too).  The first time my mom and dad drove it they discovered why my brother liked the car. It had a 400,4 barrel under the hood and flew over a 100 mph in a half mile. When it was my turn to drive, after attempting to learn on the 4 speed Chevy Biscayne, my dad delivered a hand me down 64 Ford Fairlane from my sister.  It didn’t look like much but I was able to load it with my cousin, our two friends from down the road and a couple more neighbor girls. It got us to school, basketball and track practices, to work walking beans and to summer softball games. It was functional to say the least!

Our father then informed us next, since we all got our “stuff”, we had to get car insurance for our prized possession’s. Accidents do happen, he said, and one can never predict when my brother’s or I, would attempt to test our Chevy, Dodge or Ford’s capabilities by pressing the petal to the metal on a paved roadway. We all did exactly as my father had figured we would do and darned if that insurance didn’t come in handy.

We all took our cars to college with us where dad had to add renter’s insurance to his homeowner’s policy and I never used it. When I graduated and got my first real job I discovered that I would be responsible for figuring out what medical insurance I would need to carry. Now I started to worry about my “stuff” and how I would pay for all the “stuff” I needed and wanted. Insurance might be needed, however, since I had learned from my earlier mistakes. Now though, mostly, I was worried about the other guy and their inability to drive responsibly on slick roads. I had learned how to manuever on ice growing up in Iowa, having learned the hard way, after plowing into the rear end of my brothers future mother in law’s car. Everyone had insurance back then and you needn’t worry that half of the population didn’t have insurance. Those were the good old days!   

Then when I was 30 years old I bought my first house, purchased my own homeowners’s insurance, because now I had more “stuff” to worry about now and a truckful of valuable “stuff”. I had been allowed to remove some early attic furniture from an old house on our farm. It all seemed really valuable at the time but maybe it was because it was all I had so insurance seemed important.  My homeowners policy covered fires, accidents, broken pipes and accidents if visitors were hurt on my property. All very important, I was told by my agent, and I never used it. I had been careful,never used candles, taught my children the same and always did as my father taught me. Thankfully now, in 30 years of owning property, I can say that I probably could have saved alot of money if I had not invested in insurance but saved the money I would have spent. Well, but of course, home insurance is required when you borrow money and state laws require us to purchase car insurance (at least liability).   

Oh, and I can’t forget about life insurance. You know that annoying salesman that shows up at your door determined to convince you that you must buy his over priced, expensive whole life insurance policy to insure your loved ones upon your demise! He says you can’t live without it. Don’t believe him for a second. He’ll tell you that you won’t be able to afford it in your older age or you will become un-insurable, just remember to consider the source. You take good care of yourself right? You don’t drink and drive or use illegal drugs right? You go for walks and eat well, manage your stress and laugh alot. Do not buy this product on a whim. Look at term policies to insure your family if you must until you are out of debt. The company you may be employed with often have good policies available.  Sign up for them, research other policies as you are living your life. They can always be dropped or changed and you will have purchased some peace of mind in the interim. Whole life insurance in my opinion is a ripoff you should run as fast as you can from. You can save your money and grow it faster on your own. 

What I have really learned over the years is that although “Stuff” is necessary all can be replaced.  “Stuff” requires alot of space, lots of work to care for, lots of work to move, lots of work to pay for and lots of worry.  Wasn’t life alot easier when you were young and just happy to look through the toy catalogue before Christmas and dream about the goodies Santa might deliver. I am now a lot older and busy getting rid of alot of “Stuff” I don’t really like, want or really use or need. I have discovered that less is really more and all that one really needs is a loving family, a few good friends and the providence for happiness and trust that God will provide daily what we need to be happy. Insurance just helps us sleep at night so we can go on vacation!    

People always ask me why buy gold and silver? In the last ten years, gold has gone up 530%, and silver has gone up 735%, while the dollar’s worth has gone from 13 cents to 4 cents! DON’T  SAVE IN DOLLARS IT’S JUST PAPER!  Protect your family!