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Jackpot Fairy Tale

November 3rd, 2009 at 12:41 pm

It happened last week while lounging before bedtime with my 2 kids. We were all up on my bed (which is a treat when Dad is out of town) and my little 9yo girl was browsing the headboard shelves.

Amongst my old coin collection, heirloom jewelry, and magazines is a small shelf of books. One is a 'birthday record' with nice illustrations of cats given to me 20+ years ago. I have recorded many extended family member's birthdays in it and kept it for reference (yes, this is B*E*F*O*R*E microsoft reminders yadayadayada).

DD9 flipped through the cat pictures and asked me 'Why is this here in the back page?' pulling out some folded cash bills.

OMgosh. CASH. I glanced at a $100 and said 'Yikes, wha??' but then my jaw dropped. I picked up all the money and stared. There were SIX folded one-hundred dollar bills and two twenties.

WHAT??????????

I do not secretly hide stuff. I am not a sentimental person to a large degree. I do not hoard nor keep little tchochkees.

Then I said, 'We better call Dad to see if it's his' (wanting to catch him on his way to the airport for a trip to Italy before international rates set in).

But I knew in my heart it was mine. This book was something I had before marraige, and hadn't looked in much for about 10+ years. I probably hadn't looked in it from just about the time my daughter was born.

So I racked my brain why had I put that money there??!! Was is a gift someone or someone(s) had given for the kids starting out in life (I would have had a 2 year old and a new baby). But I don't think that much would have been gifted.

It definitely wasn't from my marriage, we used gifts for the honeymoon.

And almost impossible that I inherited it because those things had happened more recently.

My husband confirmed all this. 'ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR MIND' were his exact words. 'STUFFING MONEY IN THE MATTRESS??' were some other choice comments. But he was laughing his head off too.

I couldn't sleep for a couple hours. (The kids went down no problem). What should I do??

-Save it?
-Invest in my home business?
-Get some dental work done (a filling had chipped)?
-Invest in some good work clothes (the tailored pants are wearing thin after 6 or 7 years)?
-Give some to my sister (the starving artist)?

Well I was able to sleep after a bit but called my husband one more time in the morning with a decision.

For the past couple years it became increasingly important to me that my daughter have some air travel experience. My son is in front of the curve on this point by going on a number of trips with just my husband when I stayed home when my daughter was a baby. My daughter also is less practical and, I fear, less streetwise in general and I wanted to give her a solid experience in life at this age. (Maybe I fear wrongly).

Anyway, it was decided.

I would take just her on a little trip to San Francisco. An on-line buddy had tipped me off that Southwest had a $25 special for flights within 380 miles (everywhere in the US) if booked by the end of October. Of course after fees and JUNK the fare was more like $50. But still fit my needs perfectly.

Great place for public transportation. We'd not need a car. And BINGO. The new world class science museum in Golden Gate park to visit!

There was a school holiday in January. OK. Booked. We would fly from LA (to Phoenix) to SF and back. Sheesh. So far so good for the air experience.

The next week I studied the AAA guides and internet for small hotels or B&Bs to stay. I wanted breakfast included, walking distance to BART, and an overall sense of the magic of the city etc. Easy peasy. A charming Victorian, near Union Square, kids discount, afternoon tea/wine, all for under $100 (before fees of course). With hundreds of positive reviews.

There's still enough cash left over for the museum fees, a teeny tiny shopping.

And oh yes, a nice check to my sister the starving artist.

6 Responses to “Jackpot Fairy Tale”

  1. ceejay74 Says:

    Too cool! There's something going around the blogs recently, I swear--lots of found/forgotten money popping up. I'm happy for you that it hit you too.

  2. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    Wonderful idea for the trip with your daughter. Smile And what a great surprise you somehow set up for yourself! Somehow!

  3. creditcardfree Says:

    Awesome find! Have a great time on your trip. I'm sure your sister will appreciate a little extra pocket cash, too!

  4. lizajane Says:

    Wow! That is a fairy tale come true. I always wonder if this sort of thing happens more often than you think, but with people that donate or sell books.

  5. fern Says:

    Wow, how lucky! Imagine if you were cleaning up and gave away a bunch of books to Goodwill or the library.

    I occasionally find money in pants pockets, $10 here or a few dollars there, but $600, whhoooeeeeee.

  6. Jerry Says:

    I love that the money would lead you to think of your daughter like that, what a cool experience for her! I think that travel is so important for a child and it offers some insurance that they will see the world through different eyes. Have a great time in SF, and enjoy expanding your daughter's world view! Congrats. (Aaaand, thanks for supporting the arts. They matter!)
    Jerry

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