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    Posted September 17, 2008 by
    St. Pete Beach, Florida
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
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    What we want, what we need



    What are we giving up and why?  We have given up many things so that we can provide more to our children and grandchildren if they need it, and so we can continue to live where and how we live.   In January we will give up our lease on our car, repair the air conditioner on our older car, and use that for our transportation needs.  We have been offered many incentives but nothing that circumvents the monthly payments or the gas and insurance bill.  We have moved one of our retirement funds to a more secure money market reducing our monthly income.  We used to go out three times a week to have dinner at an inexpensive restaurant, now we go out maybe once a week.  Coupon cutting, discount stores, specials of the week are now apart of our weekly quest.  My husband has long desired to get a boat to scoot around our area waterways.  That has definitely been put on hold.  When we go out, we plan out several errands so as not to waste gas nor the money it costs to pay for that gas.  Right now I am on a quest to win 4 tickets to a local theme park so that when our friends come to visit us in February we will save over $125.



    One part of our life that consumes all of my retirement check is our health insurance.



    However, we just got the health insurance rate increase for next year.  We will have to pay an additional $65 a month.  Thank goodness we are giving up our car so that we can pay for our health insurance.  Funny how we have to pay so much for health insurance and yet we have to pay that $35 copayment for visits to the doctor or prescriptions that we need.  It is amazing how a fixed income gets fixed by those in the insurance business.



    Yes, it has changed our lives, but with the gas we are saving, there is the saving of our environment.  Maybe our excesses are not what we need to live, but what we have gotten used to.  It again prompts the question - Is it what we want or what we need?



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