Got my first pay stub of the New Year and am in a bit of sticker shock. I purchase my family's healthcare insurance through a contributory program through work. I kept the same coverage as last year, and I guess I didn't pay enough attention while making that decision, as my take home pay has significantly diminished, while my healthcare contribution significantly increased.
So as a result, I am going to have to trim the fat and make some Amateur Radio sacrifices this year:
1) I will not be renewing my GQRP dues, so no SPRAT this year.
2) I will have to end my membership to the Raritan Valley Amateur Radio Club this year as their dues have also increased significantly, and I harldy ever use the repeater anyway, so this one is a no-brainer.
3) No major Amateur Radio purchases this year - no PX3, that's for sure.
4) No Dayton or FDIM, although the chances for that were slim and none, anyway.
5) No replacing anything this year unless it's an emergency or unless I can do it super economically.
On the bright side, my dues to FISTS and QRP-ARCI are both paid up for at least another year, so I don't have to worry about those. I'm also a Lifemember of the ARRL, so I don't have to worry about that.
This isn't a self-pity party, just the facts of life. I know that while these are sacrifices that I will be making, a lot of you who are on fixed incomes have made more and even more drastic cutbacks than these.
The other bright side is that this will force me to become more resourceful and do more "out of the box" thinking. Where an Amateur radio need will pop up this year, I will be probably doing some unconventional problem solving. If I come up with any cool solutions, I will be sure to share.
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!