Friday, January 15, 2016

Becoming a Millionaire

Thank goodness there were winners in the Power Ball lottery.  The entire United States was on the verge of ceasing any productive work while our coworkers, store clerks, children's teachers, and radio personalities all fantasized on how they would handle the money if they won.  I'm not a regular lottery ticket buyer, but a little fun in the office, and I contributed three times to buy one share in the division pool.  It worked like this.  Outside LB's office was a dry erase marker board with a banner heading FUTURE BILLIONAIRES. We all new that even should we hit the big one, after the cash pay out, after taxes, even when it hit the $1.5 B mark, each share was only going to be worth several millions, but the board looked more entertaining using billionaire. We gave her our money for the number of shares we wanted to buy, then wrote our name and shares on the board. I will confess, it got a little crazy toward the third ticket.

For the Power Ball drawing for January 6th, when I believe the pot was just shy of $1 billion, 34 shares were purchased. Most were 1-2 shares, LB had three. We hit the Power Ball number on a few of our tickets, which was reinvested for the January 9th drawing, shares swelled to 48, so we had six more lines of numbers. By January 13th, not counting additional reinvestment from a few more numbers that earned a couple dollars back, shares were well over 100. Everyone in the division was in, and several people bought five or more shares. I stayed with my one, $2.00 share each time. Someone estimated each share would have been worth $4 million after lump sum decrease and taxes. That would have been if we were a single winning number. Known now was there were three winning tickets, which would have decreased my one share.  Hardly seems worth it, now in hindsight.

Sarcasm aside, winning one share, even winning 1/4 of one share, could be a life changer for most people.  For me, it would mean my kids college debts could be wiped out, I could set up the little charitable foundation I've always dreamed of having-a bank account big enough that I could use the interest earnings each year to make a sizable donation or two, above what our regular cash flow allows. I'd be planful, tucking more away in long term savings and also have the peace of mind knowing DD#2's college bill is in the bank, for all four years, and graduate school should she wish to attend. Stuff.  Would I buy more stuff, a bigger house, or a better car? Granted, my now $1,000,000 if those other things are accounted for, is probably under $100,000 in accessible funds. No, I honestly do not want any more things to clutter my house, my garage, and my life.

Perhaps I'd tackle a few more places to visit sooner than my regular budget would allow.  I might invest in biweekly cleaning help.  Now that is a dream.  Professionals that have all the right products and tools, and have the technique down to spiff up my house top to bottom in a 1/2 day block of time. I'd not over think purchasing tickets to see a show, play, concert or performance.  Not that I would have gotten through the manic phone lines, but I didn't even attempt to purchase Adele tickets for this summer as I knew they would be out of my price range.

I am back to earth like the other 300,000,000 minus three, people in the United States  that will have to become millionaires through earning, saving, and investing. I'll need to keep reading frugal and simple living blogs to help me learn about and perhaps master a few life hacks that gets me closer to being able to do and afford all the above opportunities that a lottery ticket win would have afforded. How about you?  Who else jumped into this lottery game this last go around?  Any of you regular gamblers?

Remember the words of Will Rogers, "The quickest way to double your 
money is to fold it over and put it back in your pocket."

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