Monday, May 14, 2012

If you won the lottery

What would you do?  This one is easy- I have thought about it for literally years!  The most critical decision is already made- we would take an annuity instead of a lump sum.  I don't care what anyone says- the annuity would allow for better budgeting.

First, we would retire.  I never thought I would say this, but I am ready. We already know how much we would set aside each year for medical expenses and for investing in our future- the rest is for the fun stuff.  Let's assume it's one of the BIG (i.e. over 60 million dollars) jackpots

 Next we build our house.  My "dream" home sits on several acres and has four bedrooms,three baths, an office for me, a roomy kitchen with a walk in pantry, a glassed-in breakfast nook, a nice big living room with a fireplace and built-in bookshelves and a man-cave in the basement.  There's more, but I could write an entire post on that so I will move on.  Before we move on though, I will state the obvious and say that we will hire someone to help us care for the house and maybe the property.

While we are waiting for our house to be built, we pay off all debt (which is not a lot in the grand scheme of things, but it will be nice to be out from under it.) and set it up to give yearly gifts to our five chosen charities. Those include The American Cancer Society, The Arthritis Foundation, The AIDS Foundation, the Avon Foundation and the Humane Society.  We also buy a windmill for my father's churches.  It is SO windy there that they would not only be able to power both churches but perhaps have income to be more self-sustaining without pressuring the parishioners as well.  They are good people, we would like to do this for them.  We would also budget to be able to support local charities and fundraisers as they speak to us.

We would gift our different family members with some "fun" money.  In the first year it would be an amount to each of our 5 siblings that would let them do something for themselves.  Currently, we can give $25,000 to each person without it being taxable.  We don't care what they do with it- we just want to make their lives a little easier.  As for our parents, that would be a nice chunk off their mortgages.  For our parents, we would continue this for their lifetimes.  In the second year and until the youngest is of age and the trusts are sufficiently built, we would set up trusts for each of our 8 nieces and nephews for their college funds.  Should they choose to go to college- they get the money dispersed over their college careers.  Should they choose not to go to school after high school, the money would sit until they are 25 at which time half would be dispersed over four years and the other half of the trust would revert to scholarships for students who need it.

Then for our "fun" stuff.  We love to travel.  We would buy an RV so we could travel back and forth across the country with our puppies.  Perhaps a boat for local boating and camping adventures.  I would go back to school and finish my degree while my other half sets up a "tinkering" shop in our barn.  We would see some of the spots in the world that we have always wanted to see.

Winning the lottery = freedom.  Freedom to wake up when we want, to nap when we want.  Freedom to go when we want and just stay home if we want.  Freedom to see things we have always wanted to see and do those things on our bucket list.  I realize that it money comes with it's own unique set of problems but boy would it be fun to have those kinds of problems instead of "regular" problems.

How about you?  What is your lottery dream?


abcsofra said...

Yes to just about everything you already wrote but at the very, very top of my lottery dream list would be to travel. Travel everywhere and anywhere. I swear I have nomad genes in me. Already just living in my new home for three years I am getting the move on itch. I want to visit the real locals of places where the make the real food and you get to met the real locals. Maybe even live in different locations for a month here or there or whatever suites my fancy. Would it be easy with chronic, severe RA. Heck no but having money sure would allow me to get a massage here and there, have my hair done my way (able to put my head forward in a sink not backwards which I can't do), and maybe even have help when I might need it. Oh the joys of traveling...I am seeing it now :-)

Julie Faulds said...

Wouldn't it be terrific to be able to travel whenever and where ever? To not be have to worry about medical bills?

I know what you mean about being part nomad. As a military brat we moved all the time and I still get itchy every few years. It stays with you forever.