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Posts tagged with: animal care

Financial Advice?


I’m in quite a bind and would love some advice if you are willing to give it…

We were planning to pay my husband’s brother to housesit while we were gone in Italy. He’s responsible and trustworthy and I couldn’t think of a better person to trust with my dear pups. My sister-in-law asked if her sister could housesit because she really wanted a break from her parents.

That should have tipped me off.

Did I mention she’s 19?

Anyway, we arrived home yesterday and our house had a pretty nasty scent. I assumed it was because it was closed and locked tight and that ‘scent’ was simply stale air. We noticed our back window was broken out but I hoped she had a good story as to why it was broken.

The next morning, I woke up and really saw the state our house was in through clear, non-27 hour flight, eyes.

The curtains covering our back sliding glass door were soaked in urine. The urine stains were so bad, we had to throw the curtains away. It had long since dried but the flooring was curled from what had been the area the dogs had relieved themselves in.

Near the front door, the recliner stunk of urine. Obviously the dogs had used this area regularly as well – the floor is destroyed and warping upward.

Near the entertainment unit, the wood flooring is warped and permanently destroyed from standing dog urine.

I sat on the couch and cried… then smelled the couch…….

The dogs urinated so frequently on the couch it stained the back and the seat.

Frustrated and crying, I cleaned the warped floors the best I could and emptied the trash. I opened the door to our California room off the rear of the house and was almost knocked over from the smell. Dog pee and vomit covered the floor. I opened the trash and empty beer bottles and plastic cups nearly filled it. Despite our strict requirement to have no parties, she had one (she fessed up when we called her on it).

My husband and I spent five hours cleaning our house and it still reeks of dog urine. Our dogs haven’t peed in our house since we potty trained years ago but as of now, it looks like they spent two solid weeks locked indoors peeing. We have spent nearly $100 on cleansers that mask urine smells and have to spend another $55 replacing the curtains. We have to custom order the glass for the window (she said my 15 pound dogs broke a window 4 feet off the ground – I say yeah right, sounds more like a drinking game accident) and can’t get a quote less than $100. I haven’t even looked at how much it will cost to replace the flooring near the front door, the rear door, or near the tv because I KNOW I can’t afford it. I drenched the couches in cleanser but have had no luck in making them smell better.

After all this, my brother insists I still pay her.

My mother thinks I should pay her… then send a bill for several hundred dollars in damages.

I don’t want to pay her since she left the dogs left in the house and didn’t care for them but at the same time, I don’t want to start world war III with my brother’s in-laws.

What would you do?

Normal by the Numbers?


I’ve been asked to reveal my actual monthly budget numbers. I was reluctant at first and then realized it may be a learning experience and I should see if I am normal in my expectations of my money.

No, I am not going to reveal my housing costs. Asking a San Diegan to reveal her mortgage payment is like asking a New York housewife to reveal her age. The only thing likely to happen is a giant string of lies.

I’m also not going to reveal our charitable giving amounts. What we decide to give is a very personal decision and it’s not an amount I’m willing to change just to pay more on bills.

Savings: $50
Electricity/Gas: $105
Cell Phones: $100
Cable/Internet/Phone: $100
Grocery: $300
Gas: $260
Laundry: $10
Toiletries: $11
Clothing/House Repairs/Animal Care/Spending Money: $200
Water: $70
Trash: $18

All remaining money is used to pay our mortgage, our credit card, our student loans, and my husband’s truck.

So. Am I normal by the numbers? What does your budget look like?