Tuesday, October 14, 2008

How I was almost on Oprah

When I say almost, I mean almost like I had phone interviews with a producer and had to send in paperwork, almost.

So remember when I posted about watching the show about the economy with Suze Orman? Well, after that I started doing some reading on Oprah's site about finances etc. So I noticed a little link at the bottom of one of the pages I was reading that said, "Did you watch the Suze Orman show on the Economy? Do you have a question for Suze?"

In fact I did.

It was about buying a house. Actually it was, "Is it a good time to buy a house with the crazy economy? and if so, should we buy a foreclosure etc." And so I emailed it.

And the next day I got a call from the Oprah show. The woman actually said, "Hi this is Julie, I am calling from the Oprah show." I saved the voice mail. Its probably the closest I'll ever get to Oprah. Anyway, I had to agree that me and Trav would be willing to appear on the show and we exchanged some paperwork, but in the end, they chose a more interesting financial example. It turns out we are kind of boring.

Financially speaking that is. Cause outside of that we are wild.

But that is not the point of this post. The point of this post is that for a few weeks, I lived in sheer terror, that Suze Orman might yell at me on national television.

And that fear affected the way that I spent money. And it was kind of a wake-up call. I analyzed every purchase, thinking, "Would Suze approve?" Do we really need that picture frame? Do we really need those Biore Pore Perfect strips?

And I made a conscious effort to just not spend unnecessary money. And its amazing how many things end up being unnecessary.

Gifts were hand made.

Dinners were eaten in.

Clothes were not bought, and therefore I did not have to drive back to the store to return them. (I seem to end up returning almost everything I buy in terms of clothes).

Which gave me a little more time to do things like blog, and sew, play with Avery, and dream.

I dreamt about the day when I would have a little house, with a little yard, where my little family would reside. (I also dreamt a little bit about what the curtains would look like hanging above my little clawfoot tub...but that is just getting gratuitous.)

And Suze Orman would approve.

The show we were going to maybe be on aired yesterday. It was called, "Can I Afford This", and people asked Suze questions about things they wanted to buy. In our case it would have been a house. The girl who got to ask that question was actually single and wanted to adopt. Suze denied her (buying the house...not the adoption). And after she was done, I swear they starting talking about stuff that was verbatim from my email.

It's cool Oprah...you can use my material. I once dressed up like you for, "Night of the Notables" in sixth grade. I actually painted my face with brown watercolors. We're even.

Anyway, I was slightly sad when I found out that we were not going to be on the show, but I hope I can keep up my spending-with-the-fear-of-a-Suze-smack-down ways.

And sorry if you get a lame Christmas present from me. Suze made me do it.


  1. what a great post! Sincere, funny, and thought-provoking all in one. Way to go!

    We bought a foreclosure (two years ago; I don't know how the economy changes are affecting the foreclosure market). But I just wanted to say that I would do it again in a heartbeat. Yes, some things were kind of a pain, but just look for a realtor who has lots of experience working with foreclosures who can guide you through all the weird regulations. And be prepared to look for a while, and for miraculous things to happen. We definitely saw some very nasty houses, and I am so glad that we passed them up and kept our standards high (within reason--we have done a lot of work on the house, but it was not totally falling apart when we moved in--just things like repainting, fencing, removing tile, etc. Although most of the people we know with foreclosures had to replace carpet, drywall, etc.)

    We looked for about six months (not too long in the scheme of things) and the house that we saw that we LOVED and thought we could never afford sold right off for way more than we could have offered. Then it came back on the market, and we really lowballed the bid, and they took it. So we got our "dream house" in move-in condition (seriously, I shampooed the carpets and cleaned the bathrooms and we moved in) for $30,000 less than the appraised value. There's my happy foreclosure story. :-)

    Oh, but one other thing--we put down 20%, and that made a big difference in whether we could afford the monthly payments--lots of lenders were trying to create these really weird and tricky funding scenarios. Very sketchy people, so beware! Lots of them tried to talk us out of a down payment, period.

  2. It's too bad you didn't make it on the show...I would have loved to see Trav's reaction to having to fly out to Chicago to talk about his finances with a huge audience full of women...

    A few weeks before I got married, I was at the bookstore looking at personal finance books just thinking maybe I should read up on it and I ended up buying a Suze Orman book, the whole time thinking, "Do I really need this for $16.99?" ha ha.

  3. EVERYONE needs biore pore perfect strips danielle!

    this made me laugh a lot.


  4. That is awesome! Although I didn't end up watching the most recent Suze show I did watch the one before that and it's made me think twice about things too. Suze kinda scares me but it really awesome.

  5. I love Suze Orman. Too bad you did not get onto her show. It is amazing how many frivolous things we buy. I like your aditude!

  6. OK I am dying laughing remembering you dressed up as Oprah for Night of the Notables! I was Ginger Rogers and, as I recall, I wore one of your mom's old pageant gowns. (Go Miss Sparks, NV!)

    I'm all about homemade gifts this year, for lots of reasons. Let's pray I can actually get people their gifts by Dec. 25th!

    And I really wish you could have been on Oprah. That would have made me cool by association. ;)


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