Before I forget...sorry for so many typos in the last few posts. I'll try to do better. You can generally say that the more tired I am, the more typos there are:)!
Have you noticed all the articles, books and TV spots about thrifty living and "simplifying" lately? I sure have! It seems to be very in vogue as of late. Of course, "it's the ecomony, stupid, " but there's this huge part of me that doesn't want it to end. I can say with a fair amount of certainty that when the economy finally turns around (and it likely will--though no one but God knows when), those who are chosing thrift just to get by right now will go right back to their spendthrift ways. But those of us who are true tightwads will continue to shop at Goodwill and drink powdered milk. Why? Because it's the smart thing to do. Seriously. To be honest, I haven't noticed the effects of the recession too much. Part of that is having fairly recession proof jobs (nurse/educator), but even if we lost our jobs, I'm pretty certain we could stay in our Maine cabin and make a go of it. That's because thrifty living has everything to do with attitude and not the amount on your paycheck. Some of the poorest people I know are the least frugal; they spend their money on cigarettes, junk food, cable TV and other vices. On the other hand, I know some wealthy families who are always looking for smart ways to spend and save. Obviously, there are exceptions to both sides, but you know what I'm getting at. Frugality is a mentality that says less is more. It's knowing that the things that really matter in life aren't things at all. My husband and I have been truly blessed over the years. We have lacked for nothing. But I maintain (a good Maine word) that we have been able to afford some nicer things--and give a lot away--because we don't have many items that most people call necessity--new cars/clothes, cable TV, brand name food....just to name a few. I've had my share of scoffers over the years. "Oh, lighten up," they say, "spend the money...go out to eat more...live!" But I love my life the way it is.
One nurse that I worked with a few years back (who has since retired) told me that when she started working, she and her husband made a commitment to always live on that first year salary and save the rest. So every year when she got a raise, they would bank it. They raised a family and big garden, lived simply and retired fairly early. And she was one of the most generous people I know, quietly helping those in need and always bringing in homemade goodies to share. That's what I'm talking about!!
We all have tales of grandparents who we admire for their tenacity in tough times...let's be like that! Share your frugal stories...bless someone else...