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A pointed conversation

April 4th, 2017 at 02:42 pm

I enjoyed my trip to the annual CT Cacti & Succulent Show over the weekend. I bought some goodies, probably about $35.

Most of them are little enough to fit on my double-hung window ledge.

Yes, they're on top of the toilet tank...the upstairs bath is the sunniest room in the house!

Things were getting a little crowded in there, so I had a brainstorm and hauled the "greenhouse shelves" in the garage I recently bought at Aldi's for $19.99, for my OUTDOOR plants and brought it up to the bathroom so I could have more vertical space for all the plants.

It fits, but it is a little bulky so I don't think this will stay here forever. Maybe until I'm able to put some of the houseplants outside for the summer season.

I spent several hours today, in fact, researching specific care requirements for the now dozen or so cacti and succulents I have and creating an easy-reference chart. You might assume they all like full sun and little water, and in fact you would be incorrect.

I've already discovered that some of my plants, like the aloe, jade, alocasia, drunkard's dream and peperoma, will do much better staying indoors. I nearly scorched the peperoma last summer; same thing with the aloe.

The ones that will go outside include the African Milk Tree, Lemon Bean Bush, Echeveria, Copper Spoon and Panda Plant in full sun, and the Mistletoe and Haworthia in shade.

Oh, and it appears both the pencil cactus and the similar-looking candelila may do okay in the sunroom, which gets excessively hot.

Anyway, I love these plants and would have expanded my collection a long time if it weren't for the cats. My step-father had a large cacti collection when I was growing up and I think somehow that stuck with me, no pun intended. Well, Waldo is not a concern becus he won't jump on anything but the bed, but Luther likes to chew on things so I have to be careful.

In other news...

Not long after I complained here about having to wait 5 days for my next assignment, I got a big one...6,000 words for 40 school write-ups, for $600. If I were able to do 4 of these a month, it would actually EXCEED my bare minimum monthly expenses. Of course that's before taxes, but now being in the lowest tax bracket I would still net around $2,000.

The pay is still low on a per-hour basis but we're not going to think about that. I work about a 35-hour week doing one assignment of this size, and since I work weekends too, I find I can work 5 hours a day, usually around 8 am to noon, and then I've met my quota for the day and can move on to personal chores or continue working on the assignment so I can lighten my load on another day or finish up early.

I never realized in past years when I had to freelance that finding just a single steady writing gig could be so helpful. In the past I relied on my past real estate contacts and mainly freelanced for two brokerages, but the work was often very random and unpredictable.

The website I'm writing for now hires about 30 freelance writers, so that certainly tells you they have plenty of ongoing work.

I need to do my estimated quarterly taxes this week and then transfer some taxable savings into my SEP IRA based on my gross for the first quarter. It won't be much, but not having a 401k, it's better than nothing. Um, hmm, I assume I can do this after having contributed to my Roth IRA for this year. I think I can.

My friend R. with the prostate cancer is finally going to see a naturopath-type doctor. He invited me to come along next week, and since I can, and it's fairly local, I think I will. I will be curious to see what they recommend for someone who is overweight and eats terribly.

This weekend is the one-day family reunion in Philly where I'll be meeting 8 cousins, 5 of them for the first time! This includes the youngest and last surviving brother of my grandmother, and his 4 kids. I don't know much about them and we haven't communicated much even while I've set this up. We're meeting at a restaurant near the VA nursing home where he resides. I believe his kids are around my age or maybe a bit younger. I hope they are nice.

10 Responses to “A pointed conversation”

  1. Dido Says:

    Another reunion! Enjoy!

    I'm glad having the steady gig is reducing some of the stress.

  2. Carol Says:

    I was surprised that you found jade didn't like full sun. I found the opposite when my huge jade plant had an infestation. Full sun outside all summer seemed to cure it.
    Your succulents are really looking good. Enjoy your reunion!

  3. alice4now Says:

    Love the succulents! I would have brought home a load, too.
    Great news on the hefty writing assignment, that is a lot of hours of writing, I had no idea!
    The reunion sounds wonderful, have a great time!

  4. CB in the City Says:

    I worked in ancestry.com yesterday and noticed I had a letter in my inbox from a descendent of one of my great-great grandfathers. He was wanting to connect with other family members. The letter is a couple of years old. I would be more interested if he hadn't gone into detail about how he doesn't have any family etc. etc. Sounded a little desperate, if not creepy. I'm not going to take him up on it, though I do hope he found someone who did!

  5. PatientSaver Says:

    Carol, I know, I was a little surprised when several online sources I checked said jade like full sun. All I can say is they got rather scorched outside. Perhaps I could try again this season and be sure to gradually acclimate them to the brighter conditions.

    CB, I understand your thinking, but what comes across as creepy in a written message may only appear that way becus it's a first-time written message. I'd give him a chance based on the possible family connection.

  6. kashi Says:

    So gorgeous! I'm pretty good with plants, but terrible at keeping succulents alive! (My current apartment is far too dark, which doesn't help either.)

    Have fun at the reunion!

  7. CB in the City Says:

    I'm sure he is probably a harmless soul, but something about his tone put me off. That said, I do hope he finds a connection; there are lots of us in the family tree.

  8. Bluebird Says:

    That's great news about the writing assignment! In the past, I have contributed to a Roth and SEP in the same year. Have a great time at the reunion!

  9. Dido Says:

    Missed that: no problem contributing to a Roth and a SEP in the same year, as long as you are under the Roth phaseout threshold, which you are.

  10. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    Good news on job.

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