Hypothetical Question Game

So every now and then, I will find a very thought-provoking post on my Facebook… And I absolutely love these sort of hypothetical question games because the answer typically gives alot of insight into how a person feels and thinks.

The question post that appeared on my Facebook today was: “Would you accept $50,000 IF the person you hate the most in your life would receive $250,000?”

What would YOU do? Would you accept?

My answer is NO. I would not accept the $50,000.

Because that would mean that Cloudy would receive $250,000.

Lol, it’s ok if you don’t know who Cloudy is as I haven’t talked about him very much. I did introduce him in an earlier post about my toxic workplace, but I don’t like talking about that stuff very much because it was sooooo bad and it depresses me. But basically, he is an evil person, and he tried to ruin my entire career and my life. And I hate him more than anyone else I know.

If evidence appeared that would open the door to a lawsuit, I would absolutely sue him and the company I used to work for. If evidence also appeared that would lead to imprisonment, I would absolutely file criminal charges against him. No hesitation. I just don’t have the evidence.

I think the real reason why my decision is NO, is because he’s never faced any negative consequences for what he’s done to me and others like me. He keeps being rewarded for his behavior with promotions and raises and more power in the workplace.

I simply want justice. That’s it.

And him receiving $250,000 feels like a reward for his bad behavior. And I would choose to deprive myself of the $50,000 gift before participating in him receiving any further rewards for his behavior. He needs consequences.

I don’t know, am I a weirdo? What would you all do?

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder – Intros

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder

Covid has kept families in lockdown for a year plus, so this anniversary seemed timely to publish a proper introduction to my minimalist life with a hoarder. Also, if you wanted an introduction to minimalism – or maybe just inspiration – I would love to recommend to you the MindBeautySimplicity site – as I’m one of her biggest fans. πŸ™‚

Certainly one of the reasons (there’s more than 1, I promise) why I’m a nutjob is that I prefer a minimalist lifestyle while my husband does not. He’s more like a hoarder – as far as he constantly buys items that are unnecessary and duplicates, and leaves them cluttered all over the home, and will not get rid of them voluntarily. I recently posted about his latest duplicate purchases here if you were curious.

But he’s not unsanitary like hoarders we see on tv. I can attest that there isn’t a bug infestation or mold growing on our dirty dishes at home. It’s nowhere near that bad.

So I don’t know, is there a better descriptive word for this than “hoarder” then? I feel like hoarder might be a bit too extreme for what I mean. Let me give you all more insight, and let’s see if there’s a better description…

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder – Sharing Spaces

Before the lockdowns, my husband used to travel all the time for work. So much so, that I could keep the house picked-up and on-par with my comfort levels for the majority of the time. And he would only occasionally disrupt that. So it was very manageable for me. And I would have a decent amount of time satisfied and comfortable in my own home. That’s all I need.

But ever since Covid happened, he’s been home EVERY.SINGLE.DAY. And I have no escape from these habits of his that are making me crazy. I have no comfort in my own home.

He barely leaves the home anymore except to go buy more things that he will leave out to clutter the home, so things are really stressing me out here now.

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder – Money

When it comes to money, I am a super-saver while my husband is a super-spender. He literally lives paycheck-to-paycheck and that’s by his choice – it’s not a income situation.

I just don’t get any pleasure from spending money. I know that’s such a weird thing – I would never say that out-loud to anyone in my real life because I know how strange that is. My pleasure with money comes from saving it – it’s like, my security blanket and makes me feel safe and comfortable when it’s slowly accumulating in the bank.

One “win” that I do have under my belt, is that we both did agree to shun debt going-forward. When we got married, he was heavily in debt – due to credit cards and car payments and a loan from his parents. I don’t believe in debt as it cancels-out my security blanket, so this was my major deal-breaker. I paid-off everything he owed (including his financing for my engagement and wedding rings, so I paid for my own rings basically), and in exchange he agreed to no more debt again, as long as there were no changes to either of our employment statuses. And he’s lived up to that.

We only have mortgage debt at this point, and I’m focused on paying that off as quickly as possible. Having it really nags at me.

But he does spend every single penny he earns, as soon as he earns it basically. That still kills me, but we do have separate bank accounts so he can’t spend any money I earn. When we first got married, we had a joint bank account, but he would spend all the money we BOTH earned in that scenario, so I separated bank accounts quickly. It was necessary to keep my stress and anxiety under control.

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder – Clutter

But it’s the clutter at home that really kills me.

Here are a couple photos of our bathroom. We have separate sinks. Guess which one is his and guess which one is mine.

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder / Image Source: Pepper V.
Minimalist Life with a Hoarder / Image Source: Pepper V.

Like I said, it’s not bad at all – not like what you see on tv shows about hoarders. I realize that in comparison, our home is perfectly fine. But it just makes me flip out. I admit that it’s illogical for me to feel this way, but I do. And I struggle with keeping my feelings under control.

I walk into this multiple times everyday and I immediately have a stress response that I cannot explain. And what freaks me out 10x more than anything else, are all the open cabinets and drawers. And it doesn’t make any difference if I close them myself, a few minutes later they’ll be re-opened, and LEFT open. Ugh, just kills me.

He does that everywhere too. The worst is in the kitchen. He’ll open the pantry, take out whatever he wanted from in there, LEAVE the pantry door open, and then LEAVE OUT whatever he removed from in there, never returning it from where it came from. Everytime I walk into the kitchen and see that, I feel my blood pressure rising.

Anyhow, I’m really miserable living like this everyday. It’s been a whole entire year of this now. Absolutely no comfort in my own home because I can’t keep it in a condition that satisfies me. It stresses me out.

Delicious Rotel Breakfast Casserole

Rotel Breakfast Casserole

It’s time for another fave comfort recipe! This time it’s a rotel breakfast casserole. Everyone in the fam loves it.

Rotel Breakfast Casserole / Image Source: Pepper V.
Rotel Breakfast Casserole / Image Source: Pepper V.

1 lb breakfast sausage, browned and drained
3 eggs
1 1/3 cup milk
3/4 cup Bisquick mix
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 can Rotel, drained
Salt and pepper to taste

If you don’t want the Rotel flavor in your dish (or you don’t have Rotel available locally), just substitute the Rotel with 1/2 cup chopped onions instead.

Heat oven to 425 degrees.
Mix eggs, milk, Bisquick, Rotel, and salt and pepper together until well blended.
Stir in sausage and cheese into the mixture.
Grease a casserole dish.
Pour mixture into casserole dish.
Bake uncovered 35-40minutes, or until center tests clean. (Do make sure to check the center because if it is still liquid there, then it is not ready to eat).
Cool 5 minutes.

Rotel / Image Source: Pepper V.

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Down and Out with a Migraine

I’ve been pretty useless today everyone, as I woke up with one of my weird headaches that started last summer. I’ve been checked out by several doctors and even had an MRI, and the doctors are telling me it’s a migraine.

I don’t know if I believe them that it’s a migraine, because the pain is very localized – the bottom right side of the back of my head. And whenever I research migraines myself, that’s not a location that’s referenced at all.

And I’ve tried everything to relieve the pain – maximum strength migraine over-the-counters, prescription meds, and I’ve also tried CBD. But nothing has worked to give me any relief.

I even tried a prescription narcotic and still… It didn’t work for any pain relief. I’m almost willing to try something illegal too, that’s how bad the pain is for me. But I wouldn’t even know how to do that so I guess that’s not possible either.

But what really freaks me out about this headache – is the frequency of it. It’s seriously every 3-4 weeks at this point, and it will last from 3-7 days. That’s SO much of my life! Maybe if it was more infrequent, I’d be able to deal with it better, but the fact that it’s almost a chronic issue for me now is just devastating.

So I’ve just given up. I don’t know what else to do. When I get one of these headaches now, I just have to ride it out until it goes away on its own.

I’m just, defeated.

For my previous posts about this, you can tap on my tags for β€œHeadache” or “Migraine” or you can tap on these links:

Mystery Headache is Back

Weird Headaches

Minimalist Life With a Hoarder – A Day in the Life 1

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder

In my personal experience, the minimalist life with a hoarder is quite dysfunctional. I posted a better introduction into our current lifestyle here if you wanted extra context. I am also a big fan of the MindBeautySimplicity site – as I find her blog to be one of the best inspirational sites for minimalism out there. Definitely take a look and see if you agree. πŸ™‚

This current post is just a description of a typical day for us…

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder – The TWO Printers

We have a household printer. That’s normal. Nothing weird there.

Last March however, my husband had to start working from home full-time. Due to his work, he *needs* the printer during his entire working hours and he goes through ink like crazy. I don’t believe he actually *needs* the printer that much. He prints everything because 20+ years ago when we started working that’s how we documented and saved everything. And he just never adapted to saving everything online instead, like I have.

So when he started working from home around this time last year, he took over the household printer, and moved it into his personal office space. And I never go into that space ever, because it is ridiculously cluttered and that makes me crazy.

Since then, whenever I need to print something (maybe once every 2-3 weeks or so, nothing obnoxious), then I email it to him and ask him to print it. It’s never anything urgent either so it doesn’t interrupt his work and he can do it after-hours.

But I just spent this past weekend working on our taxes. Well, there were some documents that I sent to him to print out, maybe 6 pages maximum.

And he went out and freakin’ BOUGHT me a brand-new printer so I could start printing everything I needed myself, and not have to ask him anymore. I was irked about this because I thought it was a legit waste of money. I don’t ask him very often to print anything for me. I was also irked because I had to completely set it up myself just to get those 6 pages I needed for taxes. And then I placed it in the exact same location where the original household printer used to be. I posted a photo of it.

But get this – he’s about to have to go back to his real office in May. So in just a few more weeks, he won’t need the original household printer anymore that he’s been using this whole time. And he just NOW told me that he wants to move it out of his personal office space because he wants to re-do that space to be more man-cavish and he doesn’t want a printer in there anymore. So now I legit have TWO household printers. And THAT irks me most of all – redundancy makes me lose my mind.

I told him I was going to get rid of the original printer then, and now he’s upset. He says we need to keep it because he might have to work from home again in the future, and he’ll want it back. But if that happens, there’s a perfectly good brand-new household computer I just set up that works very well for those needs. And I reminded him that I won’t need it that much – maybe only once every 2-3 weeks, and during taxes once a year.

And this is seriously what we’re fighting about today, which is pretty typical for us in this minimalist life with a hoarder.

Minimalist Life with a Hoarder – The TWO Keurigs

And I didn’t even know he had this bc I never go into this room, but apparently he had also bought his very own Keurig for this “office space”. Not a problem in itself. But now that he’s started moving things out of that room so he can start prepping it to be his man-cave, he has moved it into the kitchen, right next to the Keurig that’s BEEN in the kitchen this whole entire time.

Now there are TWO Keurig’s in the kitchen.

This might be the best time to also tell you – that’s he’s the only family member in this whole entire house that even uses a Keurig. He could’ve moved the original kitchen one into his “office space” instead of buying another one, and nobody else would have been affected. But no, that didn’t happen.

Also, his “office space” has no water supply, so he has to go into the kitchen (where the original Keurig is) to get water in order to use the new Keurig in this room every time anyway. Such a waste.

C’mon folks, tell me… Which one of us is the crazy one? I don’t think it’s me, but maybe it is?!

What Do You Look For in a New Blog to Follow?

I’ve slowly and surely been adding new blogs that I find to my WordPress Reader so I can easily see them again when there are updates.

But there are certainly key things that make me add blogs to my Reader, as well as key things that make me avoid adding them.

I definitely exit as fast as I can if the blog takes a long time to load or a ton of ads pop-up in my screen. Lol I just don’t have the time for that. And it might be a myth, but I’m incredibly paranoid about computer viruses and getting hacked and I always associated slow pages and tons of pop-ups with higher risks for that. So I just stay away.

I also stay away if the blog is heavily sales-oriented. If every paragraph is a sales pitch with non-stop links to amazon throughout it’s entirety, then I do lose interest almost immediately.

However, the subtle sales pitches don’t bother me. You know, where the post is mostly informative or storytelling and the sales links are embedded quite naturally into the content – that works for me and it actually impresses me when it’s done that well.

I also enjoy content that is very interactive, where there are alot of comments afterwards because I do enjoy reading all those too. I’ve found comments to be just as informative and entertaining as the original post.

I also get lured in by visuals. Blogs with a good mix of visuals included within their posts do catch my attention better than others and I tend to go back for more.

What do you all think about blogs that you find? What makes you follow them or exit them for good? And, where do you find your new blogs?

I used to find new blogs to follow on social media, mostly on Facebook. But I’ve lost my taste for those. Of course this is a blatant generalization that I realize doesn’t apply to everyone, but the blogs I find on Facebook seem way more interested in increasing their follower counts and site visit counts than on any authentic interaction. And I simply just don’t have the time to weed through most of those.

So now that I’ve been soured about finding new blogs on Facebook and social media, I’m wondering where else would be a good place to find them? How do you all find your new blogs to follow?

One thing that works much better for me than Facebook, is when a blogger I enjoy posts about all the blogs that THEY enjoy. It’s like, a personal reference. And usually, they’re spot on! A recent post by Happy Panda is the perfect example of this. I couldn’t be any happier when a blogger does this. πŸ™‚

I would LOVE to find a blog directory somewhere that is managed via personal references only. That way, the people only interested in spamming, and playing the numbers game, don’t get included. And nobody has to filter through them anymore. Also, blogs that are spammy or slow or stuffed with advertisements won’t get included either because it’s very exclusive directory that focuses on quality over quantity. Does something like this exist? If not, we all should start one. Let me know if you want in! πŸ™‚

Introducing my Online Alias

Pepper Valentine.

Lol, so I played that alias-creation game “What’s Your P*rn Star Name?” where you combine the name of your first pet + first street you ever lived on, and voila! Pepper Valentine.

What’s your name when you play that game?

Anyhow, this is a repost of my story as to why I decided to create an alias. It’s a frequent question I get so it’s a good revisit for any newcomers visiting here.

I have the alias because I wanted to create a Facebook account for my blog, but I didn’t want anyone from my real life to find it or to know it was actually me. I do vent about them online occasionally, as you know.

I can’t use my real Facebook account bc I plan on blogging about my real life and work stuff, etc. And if people in my real life were aware of that, I’d probably censor myself for their benefit. So to feel like I have freedom here, I’d prefer for folks in my real life to not know. I hope that makes sense and doesn’t make me seem like a weirdo.

So I tried my alias and surprisingly Facebook accepted it as a real name! Lol, I didn’t expect that since they seem really strict about using real names. So now I’m Pepper Valentine online. Nice meeting you all. πŸ™‚

If you are a Facebook fan, definitely feel free to add me. I’m Pepper Valentine, and my link is www.facebook.com/peppvalentine.

I also created a Facebook page for this blog, it’s at www.facebook.com/peppervalentine77. I’ve never managed a FB page before, so this will be a learning experience for me. I hope it turns out to be cool.

See you all over there!