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Lately, when I decide to get up on time, I have been privileged to enjoy the amazingness that is riding the bus. Standing out on the corner in the rain while the bus running 5 minutes late reminds me that being frugal is sometimes a bummer. Saving $5 a day on gas looks like me spending almost an extra hour on travel per day and bearing the elements. The nice thing is, I am able to do some blogging on the bus, so it’s not a complete waste of time. Though I do end up motion sick after about 15 minutes, so I only have a limited amount of time to download my brain into the computer before feeling like I have been spinning in the teacups ride at Disney for an hour! So….anyways….what was I going to say…?
If I Won The Lottery
Oh yea, the lottery. So there I was, standing out in the beautiful 48 degree June rain (thank you Seattle) and I saw the bus drive by with a big lottery sign say $171 million jackpot. For a few minutes after reading that sign, I drifted off into wonderland and thought about what I would do with $171 million dollars. Here’s what I came up with:
- PAY THE FREAKIN’ TAXES! Having done some reading on lottery winners going broke, one of the biggest mistakes they make is not paying income tax on their winnings. I would take 40% of the winnings and write a big, fat check to the IRS. If I was in a state with a state income tax, I would probably send 50%. OUCH! I think I’ll do ok with only $100 million to play around with, though.
- SETUP A BUDGET! Hey, just because you can afford ANYTHING doesn’t mean you shouldn’t practice discretion with your purchases and still have a monthly budget. I would probably add a little (read: a LOT) of wiggle room in our spending cash, date, and vacation budgets.
- PAY OFF MY DEBT…..EVEN THE HOUSE! My first REAL order of business would be to pay off my student loans and house. It would be pretty awesome being debt free. It would free up most of my income to go towards investing, savings, and giving.
- BUY OUR DREAM HOUSE! We do love our current home. It fits all of our current needs, has a new fence, and is great for having people over. BUT, we will outgrow it someday, and when we do, we were planning on moving into our last home, our dream home. If we had the means, why not just MOVE NOW?
- QUIT MY JOB! This is actually a tough one. I like my current job, but with $100 MILLION in the bank, I feel like it would be a full time job just to manage that money. I would still give 2 weeks to a month notice and train a replacement because I wouldn’t want to burn any bridges.
- SETUP A NON-PROFIT! Most likely, I would want to spend a large chunk of my time on philanthropy. I would setup an organization that would help me give properly to the church and to other causes that I believe in. Giving is something I know I am called to and now I would be able to do it full time.
- GROW MY EGG! I would want my money to work hard for me, so instead of cashing it all out and burying it in the backyard, I would want to invest it wisely and try to get the best returns possible. Honestly, I would love to get my Series 65 and learn to invest the money myself (along with trusted advisors). Maybe I could help other philanthropists invest as well to make our money stretch even further.
- BLOW A MILLION! And by blow, I mean “stimulate the economy and help create jobs.” Heck, I would probably do this. I think it might take me a while because the thought of spending that much money makes me sick right now, but it would be fun. Take my wife on a complete tour of Europe for a month or two. Get a boat (I like boats). Purchase a 2007 Subaru WRX Wagon Limited in World Rally Blue. Throw some awesome house parites. This would just be awesome!
As the bus arrived and I snapped back to reality, I felt a little warmer inside. Not because money would make me happy and fulfill all my needs, but because it’s fun to dream a bit about what you would do with no restrictions. Like I’ve said before, I think that where your money goes shows what is truly important to you. I would LOVE to use money as a tool to help as many people as possible, for sure. And you know, it would be pretty awesome to blow through a million!
Comments: I know you have spent some time thinking about what you would do if you won the lottery. What are some of the things you would do if you fell into $100 MILLION overnight? Also, will this rain ever stop? EVER?