Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Big L.I.

I'm going to use my favorite BabyG names in the next few posts to see which ones feel the most like our little sweetie pie. Today's name of choice: Verdita (and variants).

GreenDaddy and I have been very busy the last two years doing all sorts of little things to make the world better for Verdita: we learned to compost, planted a garden, switched to 100% wind energy, joined a food co-op, searched out local and organic foods, turned more to buying used goods, got rid of one our cars and didn't buy a new one, we started avoiding petrochemicals, stopped using shampoo (usually), switched to nature store deoderant, joined freecycle to lessen our junk load in the dumps, & continued recycling, even our glass which means driving it to the recycling plant off Highway 59 and Westpark.

There's a lot more obviously green things out there we're not trying yet, but we're working toward: I want rain barrels and solar energy and a xeroscaped lawn and a meadow on our roof and less energy sucking cracks in the home and less time in the car and more efficient fuel and all sorts of things, these are just the first that come to mind. I think we'll get around to most of these things, as our life progresses.

But there are some difficult things you have to do to make the world better for your children, and you can't twiddle your thumbs and do it when you're ready.

First thing sounds silly, but it's on my mind a lot: we have only planted one tree in our yard, and we've cut three down. Choosing where to plant a new tree, what kind to get, thinking about how it will grow, whether or not it'll bump into the neighbors' trees...we keep getting caught in this indecisiveness that means there are three years of tree growing we have wasted in this house. I feel bad about that.

But I feel worse about the big L.I. Life Insurance. And how we still haven't bought any. Even though, like a tree, it's something you need to have planted last year. Once, GreenDaddy's work was going to send over a man to give him a checkup, and we totally forgot. That's the closest we ever go to it.

We're caught up on questions the way we are with the tree: how much should we buy? from whom? what kind is best? how will we know we have the best deal? Basically, we just want to have already had it. The rigomorolle is daunting. But daunting in this way we have no business of actually acceding to. Because there's this little former baby, Verdita, who needs us not only to do what we can to save the world, but also needs us to provide her some kind of security in case we don't survive the world long enough for her to grow up in it.

Our whole parenthood we've struggled in accomplishing legal and financial issues, the way I think a lot of people who don't want to be materialistic do. You don't want money to matter. You want the way you raise your baby to be enough. And I do think the way you raise your baby is a lot. But then, you, meaning I, I really want to make sure GreenDaddy and the baby, or just the baby, can recover as gracefully as possible if I kick the bucket. Money isn't all they'd need to do that, but having no money, and being short a parent, or two, isn't what I want for the baby either.

We did finally get around to writing a will, and we got it notarized, a few months ago. So our next hurdle as financially and legally responsible parents is the insurance thing. I wasn't sure this is something that belongs on Green Parenting...but it's a parenting issue we're grappling with and I wondered what other people are doing, how other people are faring on this front, and what other perspectives on the issue people have.


Mule Shoe Farm said...

My husband and I finally got life insurance about four years ago. We followed Dave Ramsey's way of buying 10X your annual income. Whichever one of you is earning the most is how we interpreted it. I also wanted to make sure it would be enough to pay our outstanding mortgage plus enough for one year's living expenses. Get term life, not whole life, is what I would recommend. Then I went online to a local insurance company called zander insurance and requested a quote. It took a little while to get things set up but I stuck with it and now we have reasonably affordable insurance and I don't worry so much.

Anonymous said...

Get term life, at least $250,000, and carry it until the kiddo is out of college and the house is paid off. Disability, however, is more likely than death. Green Daddy's employer offers STD automatically, but you need to opt in to the long-term disability and you do need it.

cake said...

i would think it would be an option at green daddy's place of employment. i think they pay for some automatically, and then you can add to it. that would be the easiest way to go, wouldn't it?