Of Cats, Sump Pumps, and The Economy

As news of the economy continues to worsen, our big question is this:

Sock as much money away in savings as humanly possible in case McH loses his job?

Or spend much of it now to ramp up our self-sufficiency and maybe even buy some fun extras in case all the money the government is going to have to print causes inflation to skyrocket, making thousands of dollars in savings worth a loaf of bread?

So we go back and forth, and whenever we think we have a rough idea of how much to spend and how much to sit on, Life happens.

We had no intention of redoing the living room, but then the cats got, quite literally, P.O.ed, and the carpet had to go.

Now?  Now?

We were out for the day this past Saturday – the whole day, like 12 hours – and came home to a sump pump that had stopped sumping.  Or pumping.  Or whatever.  (Yes, obviously, pumping.  I’m not an idiot.)

Thanks to the previous two days of slightly above freezing temperatures (damn you manufactured global warming, damn you!) there was some thawing going on, and some of it went on right into our basement.  Luckily it was confined to one area.

Unluckily, this area is the oldest two girls’ bedroom.

Luckily this means no computers or other electrical type things were damaged and our cupboards of school supplies are just fine.

Unluckily, this is the only area of the basement that is carpeted.

Luckily McH is off work this week.  Unluckily this is because the company shut down the plant for the week as a money saving measure (luckily he gets paid anyway – go figure).

Unluckily, he saw a neurosurgeon last week who told him he could never bend, twist, or lift anything again, most likely.  Luckily his MRI isn’t until tomorrow, so he isn’t letting that doctor’s blind guess stop him from ripping up the carpet.  Unluckily, this is probably really not a smart thing for him to be doing.

Luckily, I’m done with the “luckily, unluckily” shtick.

So, yet another room is getting redone.  The carpet isn’t moldy and would be salvageable, except some of the backing (you know, that mesh stuff) is separating from the actual carpet, so I’m not sure.  I think it’s okay as it is, but I’m afraid when I go to vacuum it I’ll just suck huge patches of carpet right up.  The tack strips and padding, however, are completely shot.

If the carpet can’t be reused then we have to either get new carpet or put in tile.  McH thinks that putting in tile would make that section of the basement more water tight, since, you know, tile work involves more cement on the floor and whatnot.

I don’t know, but I’ve heard travertine tile is Fabulous.

But the girls burst into tears at the thought of anything but carpet in their room.  Could they be any more emotional? (There is a whole post in and of itself that I will hopefully write soon).

So, right now, I don’t know what we’re going to do.  All I know is that there will be less money to put in the bank to buy that loaf of bread.

Good thing we have wheat storage and a grinder.

Pictures to come as the project rolls forward.

And George, if you’re out there, Tewt the Newt doesn’t even like flooded basements.

8 thoughts on “Of Cats, Sump Pumps, and The Economy

  1. Augh! When it rains it pours. (pun totally intended). Hope you get it all figured out soon. I would tend to agree with the girls…who wants to get out of bed on a cold day and have their feet land on a cold floor. If you’re going to put one in, then I would suggest a floor heating system…but then you’re talking a lot more lost bread. (again, pun intended – boy, I’m on a ‘roll’! HAHAHAH!!! 😉


  2. If I were going to do flooring in my basement, I would go with Konecto (www.konectousa.com) and throw rugs. The Konecto is an inexpensive vinyl laminate flooring (waterproof) that does a pretty good job of looking like wood flooring (can pick from several different wood types). It is also supposed to be super durable (even with 150 lb dogs) and really easy to install since it comes in “tiles.”

    It isn’t anything fancy-smancy, but it would be a safe (and economical)choice in an area where the sump doesn’t always pump.


  3. Oh goodness, do I know that feeling of everything happening at once. Here’s my completely unrealistic vote the flooring – travertine with a heating system underneath and a nice area rug on top. ha – probably not exactly what you were looking for though! I do think there’s something to be said for putting tile or something hearty in there though just in case. As for all the rest, just ugh on all the unlucky!


  4. Jenn

    I’m with you there. It’s a bit embarrassing, but I already started my Christmas shopping. I found some wonderful gifts for family members at about 75% off. If something comes up, I still have a few gifts covered.

    Savings is not an option for us. Well, I suppose it is…I could have put the $12 I spent on the 7 Christmas gifts into savings, but I figured my return was better on the gifts. Other than that, we keep trickling a measly sum away, slowly trickling.

    That and food storage, slowly working on that as well. The freezer is stocked, and there is a small collection of full buckets in the basement (btw, I have extra buckets if you are needing a couple.) And the preserving book you bought…I got it over the holidays as well. Time to get over the fear of canning. I simply can’t justify storing everything in the freezer.


  5. lauren

    it just never stops, eh? I hope hubby’s MRI goes well tomorrow, and that the doctor was mistaken. Its hard for me to imagine putting a lot of money into flooring for a basement that could be flooded again, but I haven’t ever lived in a house with a finished basement that you actually do stuff in 🙂


  6. Christina

    Oh man. Please tell McH to be nice to his back… it would be a huge bummer if he did permanent damage to it with that carpet! (I worry. I am a worrier.)

    I vote for tile or lineolium or whatever and then a nice big fluffy rug on top to make the girls happy. 🙂


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