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Remodel and Retirement Again

White Rim TrailThe kitchen remodel is going well.  The new linoleum floor is in and the cabinets are installed. Tomorrow (Friday, March 22, 2013) the tile setter begins work.  We are going against the granite countertop trend and having tile countertops installed, thinking that is somewhat more in tune with our goal of staying in the spirit of our 1937 Tudor/Bungalow/Art Deco original decorating scheme.  We will have a Subway Tile backsplash with some colorful accents.

Our contractor, Ed Guhman of Colorado Craftsmen, Inc., is a treasure.  He is skilled, competent, and fun to work with.  In short, a treasure.  Chris, who works with Ed, is a man of many skills who also has excellent taste in music.  Good workmanship and good times.

Next week, however, Ed will be in southeastern Utah riding his mountain bike on the White Rim Trail in Canyonlands National Park,  attempting to prove he still has it, even at age 50.  We will get our tile work done and hope Ed holds up.  I’m sure he will.

Regarding retirement, things are picking up at Four Mile.  Yesterday I had fourth graders, and a small enough group that they got a tour of the Four Mile House itself, complete with chamber pots.  I always tell them that emptying the chamber pots was a children’s chore.  Today it was preschoolers.  They don’t get as much history, but we try to give them a bit of the flavor of life in 1859 Denver.  No chamber pots for them, however.

Tuesday was our annual tax time trip to the accountant.  All is well; we just need to make a few adjustments.  I have to make my first required minimum withdrawal from my retirement accounts.  Carol has been doing it for some time now, but I am the baby of the family.  It seems kind of silly, because as we are both still working part time, we can still contribute to retirement accounts.  Take it out, put it back.  Not too logical, but laws are not always logical.

What is truly fortunate is that we have yet to need to tap our retirement savings for living expenses.  That is thanks to our previous accountant, now retired; who years ago told us what savings we had to have at retirement.  We knuckled down and saved, so here we are.

We refinanced to pay for the remodel and actually lowered our house payment in the bargain.  I for one am grateful that the Federal Reserve is keeping mortgage rates low.  We are doing our part, with the Fed’s help, to stimulate the economy.

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