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If I Won a Billion Dollars (A Post About Seizing the Day)

Kyle and I had a funny conversation a couple of weeks ago. It was late and we were chatting about nothing while we were cleaning up the kitchen and Kyle asked me what I would do if we won a billion dollars. I gave the usual answer about how I’d start a charity and travel around the world and I’d pay off everyone’s debts, etc., but then Kyle said, “But what would you do? Like what would you do everyday?”

I thought about it for a minute and said that I’d probably do the same things I do now: write, play with the kids, take care of the house, cook. I like doing all of those things enough that I wouldn’t give them up, even if we could afford to not work and have nannies. It was nice, actually, to realize that I didn’t want to totally escape my everyday.

Still, this was turning out to be a pretty boring conversation, so I thought harder and then said, “I’d probably learn to watercolor.” Kyle laughed since this was such a non-thrilling answer, but the truth is that I’ve wanted to watercolor forever. I did a lot of sketching when I was in school and took a couple of classes in oil painting, but watercolor always seemed really difficult and fancy. We moved on to Kyle’s dreams (opening up community art centers and building a puppet workshop) but I did quietly plan out the watercolor supplies I would buy if we won a billion dollars.

Fast forward a week to shopping at Target for Easter supplies. I was in the office section looking for Sharpies when I saw this beautiful watercolor paint set for $10. I looked at the price and laughed, realizing how ridiculous it was to wait until we were rich to spring for a ten dollar paint set. So, I bought it and that’s what the Easter Bunny brought me this year.

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When I “opened” it on Easter, I immediately felt a little guilty. It was so silly and so ridiculous and I so don’t have time for things like that right now. I came down hard on myself for not adding this little bit of money to our house fund. I even looked for the receipt to return it, but it was long gone so I put the paints on my desk and told myself I’d let Eva play with it.

Fast forward to this morning. I was moving things around when I saw the paints again. Suddenly, it was completely ridiculous that I don’t know how to watercolor. How hard could it be, really? I started to think the usual negative things (I don’t know what I’m doing. I’ll mess the paints up. I don’t have time for this.) and then I was like, “Shut up, self, and paint something!

I put a movie in for the kids (bad parent!), shut the laptop (bad blogger!), and painted a picture of my son. The whole thing took less than an hour. Now I can say that I watercolor. And I didn’t even have to wait for a billion dollars.

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What would you do FOR YOU if you won a billion dollars?

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7 Comments

  • Reply Rachel

    I’m kind of in the same boat, if we suddenly had a huge windfall of money, I’d probably still work, because I love my job. And my husband would as well, because he loves his job. Of course we’d do the obvious stuff as well, pay off all our debts, donate to charity, etc. I’d probably buy a new car just because mine is getting up there in years and mileage, but I wouldn’t buy anything extravagant. Other than that, I think our biggest splurges would be to buy into DVC and invest in DH’s family vacation property (it’s been in the family for decades, but it’s really old and could do with some upgrades). I think the nice thing is that we’d know that if either of us was to become unemployed, sick or injured we’d be able to pay all of our bills without worry.

    April 23, 2014 at 12:11 pm
    • Reply Carly Morgan

      DVC made our list too, but we didn’t have too much else either. On the one hand, it’s nice to like working enough that you’d do it even without the pay, but isn’t it funny how a billion dollars also doesn’t seem like all that much money? We had to up it from a million because a million barely seems like anything. How times have changed…

      April 23, 2014 at 12:31 pm
  • Reply Gaylin

    I know I would cut down my hours at work and look into doing some volunteering.
    It would be awesome to not have to save up for Disney vacations!
    I would buy a car. I gave mine up last year, living in a city with an amazing bus system and crappy, expensive parking made it an easy decision. With a billion dollars, I would buy that Cooper Countryman I so love.
    Also a 1,000 sq ft coach house in my neighbourhood costs 1.2 million or more, so I would be able to afford a home of my own!

    April 23, 2014 at 1:40 pm
  • Reply Mari

    I agree with everyone. The obvious would be paying off debt, buy a house (but I wouldn’t want a huge house), visit all the Disneylands in the world, DVC, Club 33, Disney Vow Renewal, etc.

    For myself, I think I would take some time off because working and going to school full time is tiring. I would just focus on getting my master’s then work part time once I graduate because I can’t imagine staying home all day every day unless I had kids. That would drive me crazy. If I could work part time though, I could focus on my artistic side. I would go back to painting. I miss it. I would go back to playing the piano. I took classes in high school and now it’s been so long that I think I need to relearn everything. Maybe some singing/acting like musicals. Right now work and academics is leaving 0 time for anything else and I miss exploring that side of me.

    April 23, 2014 at 2:30 pm
  • Reply Hope at Disneyland

    Watercoloring is a little more time consuming, but I think you did a great job! It looks like what it’s supposed to be so that’s a win! 😀 So with a billion, I’d help family members retire and help them with bills and once we’re all debt free, we’d vacation to everywhere anyone wanted to go to but never thought they could go to (Disney parks worldwide included). As for me, I’d go back to school. I’m not sure that I’d necessarily get another degree, but I’d like to check out the classes that I couldn’t get into before or that I had to overlook because they weren’t part of my Major/Minor program. Basically just go back for the fun of learning and the freedom of being a student again. 😀

    April 23, 2014 at 4:25 pm
    • Reply Rachel

      I think I would do the same thing Hope! I loved going to school but don’t need another degree. Now I could all of the fun/artsy classes I never got to do before. Maybe lessons in a foreign language as well.

      April 24, 2014 at 6:08 pm
      • Reply Hope at Disneyland

        Right on Rachel! I’d take all those fun classes too.Maybe some day… 🙂

        April 28, 2014 at 7:44 pm

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