Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Taking Stock

Certain things exhaust me just thinking about them - and one of those things is investments.

Brian handles all of the financial aspects of our lives, including all our investments (mutual funds, CDs, Roth, 401K, short-term investments, etc.).  I do need to learn about them in case (G-d forbid!) anything should happen to Brian.  It's one of those situations where he's so great at it, I don't even bother.  I know our current financial standing but that's about it (this is not a gender thing, by the way - I handled all the money in my first marriage).

Stocks hold a certain allure for me, though.  My first encounter with any stock dealings was in 1980, when my mom had to cash out her holdings in Hobart, which was bought out my Kraft Foods.  Her maternal grandfather had set up that stock for her when she was a little girl.  I don't know how much she received in the payout but all of a sudden we had new curtains and bedspreads and all new accessories in the bathroom. I'm certain some was put into savings, because that's how my parents rolled, but I remember thinking that stocks were pretty awesome because it seemed like that money dropped out of the sky (I was 11 at the time).

When I started working I knew enough to start a 401K, but that's about it.  I'll be perfectly honest - I don't get it.  And like a lot of things, when there's confusion, there's fear.  I deal with this kind of fear with avoidance.  Smart, right?  But here's a question - if we should all be using our money to our advantage (because it is OUR money and it should work for us), why aren't they teaching these types of life skills in school?  I know budgets are stretched to the limit but hey, make it part of the math curriculum!  It's a completely applicable lesson!

When it comes to me and stocks (for right now, anyway), I'll stick with the decorative aspect.  And aren't these old stock certificates beautiful?!  Here's one of those instances where the digital counterpart will never be as cool as its paper brethren.  Some things just seem more REAL when they're printed out, with official-looking time clocks and beautiful fountain pen signatures.  These certificates conjure images of nattily-dressed men in spats and waistcoats sitting around a table talking about very important things.   Or maybe that's just a Dean Witter ad from the 90s.  :D

And of course, I LOVE using them in my work!  Their fonts, their patina, their "officialness" - it all lends a certain look to a piece.  The best part?  You can still pick some up at places like Manto Fev for a song!

"Day at the Office" collage - available in my
Etsy shop!  :D


  1. More nice work, Mel! I especially like the bear!

  2. Thanks so much, Eileen! Yeah, I did that bear one during the Financial Crisis of '08 - it's called "Don't Panic". :D