Everywhere I go the economy, the stock market, woe is me....that's what I hear. Gloom and doom. Bad times ahead. I'm tired of hearing it...aren't you? I read recently on someone's blog, and I apologize for not remembering who but I'm reading way too many blogs and besides I just turned 62 so I'm due some memory loss, a statement made by someone's great grandma when asked if she was nervous about what was happening. She said, "Why would I be nervous? Don't spend money, save what money you have, be frugal, and trust God." Now doesn't that just say it all? I know there are lots of blogs out there about saving money and they have lots of good things to tell us. But I'm more interested in you - those of you reading my blog. I know you're "normal" people going about your "normal" lives because you tell me about them. How are you saving money? Here are some things I'm doing:
1. I quit dying my hair. It's white. That's the color God made it and God doesn't do bad work. Yes it makes me look older. But, here's the thing...I'm older.
2. I gave up my fake nails. After 25 years I went cold turkey and I swear this is worse than quitting smoking. I hate it. The last time I had them "filled" was early July and they aren't grown out yet! Did I tell you I hate it? They're short and they are still breaking but I'm determined. They will get better with time.
3. I don't "run to town" every time I think about it. I write down what I was going for and when the list gets long enough I go and do everything on the list. And you know what happened? I'm getting more done at home! Fancy that.
4. Heartbreak - I let my housekeeper go. She came every other week for 5 hours. I'm cleaning my own bathrooms and vacuuming my own floors (well, my husband is doing the vacuuming) and I know that sounds decadent but in my own defense I have arthritis and I could probably make up a couple of diseases if it made you feel sorry for me. However, the good side of this is today when I finished cleaning my house I felt great about the way it looked. It was my house, my work, and I was proud of it all. I just sort of walked around for a while and smelled the sweet candle burning and looked at the beds with the fresh sheets and peeked out the windows with the clean (a little streaked but oh well) panes. I'd have strutted if I could still strut.
5. This week I saw two wallhangings on a blog that I really loved. Ordinarily I would have just hopped on over to the website where she bought those patterns and ordered them for myself. But instead I saved a picture of them and figured out a way to sort of replicate them using patterns I already have. Go me!
6. I've cut down on my chai tea lattes. Yes, you heard it here. Every day since the first time I went to New York City and my sweet niece, Natalie, got me hooked on the darn things I've mixed up 2 cups of skim milk and 2 cups of chai tea every day. Had half in the morning and half after lunch. I've cut the afternoon one in half now. I know, I know that's not cutting way back but it's a start. In a day or week or some time I'm going to cut the morning one in half too. I can do it, I know I can. I'm pretty sure I can.
7. I'm clipping coupons. Big time. I'm not just clipping, I'm printing. I've gone to websites like Kraft and Nestle and Proctor & Gamble and signed up for their dreaded newsletters and coupons. I'm perfectly capable of deleting what I don't want to read. I'm watching the grocery ads and I'm buying by the case if it's a good sale. I'm even switching brands occasionally - I've found out that we really, really love Sam's Choice Raisin Bran because it's way better than the name brands we've been buying! Now there are some name brands I won't give up - I've tried others and don't like them so there's no point. Like Glory Turnip Greens - they're just better than the others. But I'm open to change. Hey, being 62 and having a bad memory is no excuse for being a stuck-in-a-rut.
8. I'm turning off lights. I hate this the worst of all. I'd have every lamp in my house burning all of the time if I could. I hate the dark. I hate the dark. I hate the dark. But I'm turning them off.
9. I do not buy bottled water any more. I saved some of the bottles and I wash them, and then fill them with the filtered water from my refrigerator and it tastes great!
10. We only eat out on special occasions and then it's rarely somewhere "fancy." We aren't really fancy people. Our anniversary was yesterday (44 years!) so we went to Red Lobster. But we drank water and skipped dessert. I must confess that after church is a special occasion to me but again we're frugal, not fancy. Right after we retired we ate out 3 or 4 times a week and often more. I have to cook more now than before and ya'll know I'm not a great cook (remember the burned beans?) but I'm trying. I'm collecting new recipes (haven't used many but I'm collecting them!) And I'm even beginning to enjoy it a little. Just a little.
So here's my question. What are you doing different in this economic crisis? Anything different? Or are you just one of the moaners and groaners?