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Friday, May 12, 2006

Life updates

These are the updates I have since the last time I've written something personal in here.

Update 1
I've been sick the past week, with a cold or flu causing me to take a few days off work here and there.  It's been niggling at me, and I haven't really felt like writing.  Along the way, however, various political (American) issues have inspired me to write about them.  There's nothing like politics and world affairs to get you sitting up in bed and typing what outrages you.

Update 2
On Sunday Deidre and I went to a wedding show.  That was fascinating.  I wasn't too sure about going at first, but once we got there, I enjoyed myself.  There were many more couples there than I thought there would be, and it was funny to look at them and think, 'All these people are about to get married!'  It was also funny to see some of the men looking embarrassed to be there, and hoping they didn't meet anyone who knows them.

There was lots to be inspired about.  Venues, catering, fancy cars, bridal gowns and men's suits, wedding rings, photographers, and singers, to name just a very small few.  If you can think of anything related to a wedding, there was someone there to present it and hope that you'd choose them for your own wedding.

I was inspired mostly by the various styles of wedding rings.  We're probably going to have a very cool combination of titanium (or platinum) and gold, joined together as two halves.  Half titanium, half gold.  This is to represent the two of us coming together, as I'm more a gold-guy while Deidre's more of a silver-girl.  On the gold part of the band, we're going to both have a Celtic inscription of some kind, as decoration and a meaningful statement.  We think it'll look awesome.

The Celtic inscription was inspired by the inscription inside the ring from the movie Lord of the Rings.  It looks very cool!  And it was also inspired by some Celtic-patterned rings we saw.  Not only did the Celtic-ness (is there such a word?) inspire the rings, but it also inspired our thoughts of a wedding theme.

We've been talking about having a theme wedding, tossing around the ideas of a medieval wedding, or a murder mystery party that includes the wedding as the theme of the party.  However, these are not likely to be feasible for a couple of reasons.  1) The cost of a medieval wedding is about 3 times a normal wedding, and 2) there are likely to be invited guests who don't want to dress up, and therefore there will be participants and observers, which just detracts from the whole thing.

However, a Celtic wedding might be more feasible.  Celtic music, with some Celtic decorations around the place, and a Celtic theme to the vows.... It's something we'll be researching more of.

Oh, and the wedding is planned for September 15th, 2007.  It gives us a good year and a half to prepare.

Update 3
A lot of my 'writing time' has been taken up with playing Eve Online instead.  I'm really, really enjoying that game.  The relatively complicated nature of it, including long-term strategy of character development and 'career path' are intriguing and exciting to play.  I'm also enjoying my involvement in the corporation I joined in the game; excited enough to come up with strategies and roles to heavily immerse myself in the development and future of the corporation itself.  Happily, I'm being inspired to do so by the rapport I've got with the CEO of that corporation, who seems to enjoy and encourage my ideas.  It's funny that he has joked a couple of times about me being the 'secret voice manipulating the emperor'... 

Update 4
I've worked out that a serious issue in my life is procrastination.  I often feel it's better for me to do something tomorrow that could be done today.  The reason for this, it seems, is to compensate for the lack of control I grew up with.  In order to establish my own control on something, I'll choose to do it when I choose to, instead of when it needs to be done which is usually dictated by someone else.  Procrastination is a tool to establish my control on something that I have no control over.

So the underlying issue is the years of programming throughout my childhood and early adult years that told me I had no control over anything.  Since then, I've been rejecting other people's control over me - or the perception I have of it - by doing things in my time rather than their's.  This is apparent at work and at home.  A common saying of mine at home is, "I know it needs to be done; I'll do it when I feel like doing it."  A common saying of mine at work is, "I'm busy right now, so I'll get to it as soon as I can."  However, I'm not often busy, but I'm often procrastinating about it.

In order to move forward in life, I feel I need to deal with this once and for all.  Part of dealing with it is to acknowledge it as a problem.  "Hi, my name's Alan, and... uuuh... I'm a... a procrastinator.  *gulp*"  Being a procrastinator holds me back from achieving my full potential.  So I've decided it's time to do something about it. 

Update 5
As part of our plan to get into property investment, we finally made the first solid move towards it yesterday.  I faxed in a 'position statement' of our assets and liabilities, and our financial situation at this moment, to a mortgage broker who works extensively with a large property investment / wealth building organisation here in NZ.  Luckily they're in Wellington, which makes it easy for us.  As a result of this position statement, which was what they needed from us to organise pre-approval on bank and investment loans, they've told us that we're earning enough money, and have few liabilities, to allow us to get a 100% loan on any property investment, but it would be easier for us to buy our own house first with this in mind, than it would to buy investments first.

Coincidentally, this is just what Deidre wants to do.  I have a different plan though.  My plan is to buy investement properties that are cashflow positive, meaning that they give us a profit over all costs each week, and then buy our own house when we have enough profit coming in to pay for our own mortgage.  Use other people's money, so to speak, to buy the house that we'll live in.  This means we'll always be making a profit, rather than losing money by paying for a mortgage ourselves.

However, while Deidre sees the sense in it, she also has the emotional attraction to living in her (our) own home.  I can understand this.  It's good that she's willing to consider both options, and we'll be discussing this, and many other strategies, with the broker at a meeting we're having on 21st May.

We've decided that the only guarantee we have - which is something I realised some years ago - of creating wealth and independence in our lives is to get into property investment in a big way.  We hope to use our investments and capital gains to make us a very tidy profit over the next year and a half, to give us more money and more options for our wedding. 

And thus ends the updates.  I'll do my best at getting back into the habit of individual updates as they occur.  Have a fantastic day, wherever you are in the world.

Posted on 5/12/2006 12:42:00 PM Backlinks


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(C) Alan Howard 1998 - 2006