Ok, so this post is completely unrelated to paper crafting, but I needed to vent. All of you "mainlanders" who complain about your high gas prices need to stop!! :-) I live on Maui. Maui County has had the highest gas prices in the nation for a long, long time. We are regularly $0.50/gallon higher than even Oahu prices. This morning I noticed that gas in Lanai City is now $5.11/gallon!!!! Really, when is this going to stop?
We moved to Maui several years ago from Oklahoma (possibly the cheapest cost of living ever) and the adjustment to the extremely high cost of living has been very hard for us. Even now, with the housing market so terrible most places (it hasn't hit us quite as hard as everywhere else...yet) the median home price on Maui is well over $700,000. Now, our home wasn't quite that much but it was easily FIVE times the price of the house we had in Oklahoma. Groceries are expensive too. I do a little dance in the grocery store when I'm able to buy a gallon of milk for less than $7!!! And utilities are CRAZY as well!!! Our first water bill in our new home was $389. Our electric bill just increased from around $250/month to $350/month (and we don't even have air conditioning!!!!). And trust me, we are NOT living in a mansion. Yes, we live in a new home in a nice neighborhood, but it's just your average middle-class neighborhood - nothing fancy. Our house is NOT huge (actually on the small side by mainland standards....1800 sq. ft).
I often feel extremely jealous when I read other paper-crafters blogs and see that the majority of you are SAHMs. I only WISH we could afford for me to stay home full-time with my son. I do feel fortunate that I am able to work part-time (3 days/week), but I feel like I miss so much when I'm gone. Sometimes I think that if we moved back "home", we could afford for me to not work. But that would mean leaving Maui, which has become home to us. When I start feeling frustrated, discouraged, sad, mad, etc about the high financial burden of living in paradise, I sit down and open up my son's scrapbook. Yes, the cost of living is extremely high here. But we rarely pay for entertainment. We spend Saturdays doing something outdoors as a family EVERY weekend of the year - summer and winter. Last year we spent Christmas Day at the beach! I thought I would share some of the pictures that make me feel better about the situation. I may complain LOUDLY and OFTEN about the price of paradise, but I'll keep paying it for as long as we can. It's worth every penny to see my son growing up in such a beautiful place!!
Smelling the flowers (red ginger) in our yard...
My son and I hiking through the rainforest about 10 minutes from our house...
Dean LOVES trees!
Dean trailblazing through the rainforest (his favorite Saturday morning activity)
Checking out a "baby pineapple"
OK, thanks for letting me vent!! I feel much better now! I gotta run...we're headed to the beach!