Feeling the Squeeze

Are you guys becoming more thrifty in light of the crappy economy?  Man, I am.  I’m pinching pennies wherever I can.  I’m cutting back on nonessential stuff — except for books.  And maybe makeup.  Oh yeah,  that reminds me I need to make a hair appointment…okay, so I’m still spending money like I have it.  But, I am trying to pay more attention to the little wasteful stuff that really adds up fast — like junk food or eating out.  We haven’t rented any movies in a long time, nor have we gone to a regular movie.  I’ve cut back on school so that helps out with the tuition bills at least in the short term.  Eventually I have to have the classes so the money is going to be spent.

I’m actually being a little petulant about all this.  I have some attitude going.  I started out poor and I like having money much better.  So, I’ve gotten into some bad habits over the years — like using credit cards too often (even though I usually pay them off each month).  I also tend to buy too much stuff — like clothes that end up staying in my closet with their tags still on.  I know I buy too many books — it’s like feeding a habit.

So now the Discover Bill is getting out of control with the tuition bills.  It’s scary to carry a balance.  I don’t like finance charges.  My pastor told his congregation to cut up their credit cards.  No.  Nice try.  A friend of mine suggested I take my other credit cards and put them in water and freeze them in the freezer.  Yeah, like that worked.  I just took those credit card ice cubes and plopped them in a big glass of Diet Coke until they were thawed and off I went shopping! 

I’m doing okay on the budget — except when the unexpected happens and it always happens.  This morning trusty canine companion had to make a visit to her friend Dr. Vet.  Poor puppy girl has allergies so bad her eye is swollen and she has scratched herself into open sores.  Yuk squared.  So, three types of medicine and $87.00 later I just looked at my poor worn checkbook and sighed. 

The holidays are rapidly approaching.  I know retailers are doing all they can to get people to spend money, but I think it’s going to be a somewhat lean season.  I’m not planning on buying as much as usual, that’s for sure.  In fact, I asked Santa Devoted Spouse for a new sewing machine and I’m retracting that wish because it’s more money than Santa Devoted Spouse should spend on me this year. 

I’m going to try this new Poll feature and let’s see what ya’ll think of the economy. 

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7 thoughts on “Feeling the Squeeze

  1. I also love books and they are very expensive. I live at the library. If not for this wonderplace we would have been in the poor house years ago. You can find a book on almost anything. At most libraries you can also rent movies for free. What a great place.
    I agree w/your comment on libraries — I frequent ours. But there are just some books I like to collect. Thanks for visiting.

  2. We really haven’t changed a thing…that wasn’t an option on the list. We have never really bought luxury things and have always stayed “tight to the vest” on all purchases, but we don’t “spend money like crazy.”
    It wasn’t a serious poll — I was goofing around a bit. We never bought luxury things either but saved our money over our working years and invested wisely which is why we have both been able to retire at a relatively young age. All our friends were taking the ski vacations in Europe, buying boats, “designer” cars and timeshares and that stuff wasn’t important to us. We’re happier with living a relatively simple life, but that early frugality has allowed me the “luxury” of now being able to afford more if I so choose.

  3. Poor EmmaLou! I feel for her ’cause our Freddie has horrible allergies too, that’s why his previous owners dumped him. He is terribly allergic to grass which of course he has to go in and he is a Doxie so he is low to the ground anyway. He lives on Benadryl. I know what she is going through and your checkbook as well.

    We have to eat out somewhat since we live out a a motel each week but we stay where they have a mini fridge and microwave and take leftovers from home, cooked on the weekend – I’m making chili tomorrow – and buying things at the store and fixing them at “home”. Leaves us with sandwiches a lot or hamburgers on a grill but it saves what we can.

    The last movie we went out to was “Dark Knight.”

    Linda, check out Bookmooch.com It’s a book exchange club that I belong to and it is really cool. You get books to keep just for the cost of Media Mail postage. I recommend it.
    Yeah, our poor pups – I hate to see her in discomfort of any kind but man the vet bills are just eating my lunch! I’ll check out Bookmooch – sounds like just what I need. Okay, forgive my nosiness but why are you in a motel each week?

  4. I understand about living poor and not living poor…not living poor is more desirable, but I live poor now…so I have knowledge to fall back on. I live on the road now, so I don’t buy groceries…that is an expensive luxuary that needs to change. I just wish I like to cook and felt like it when I crawl out of that car…(boy, does it need to be cleaned out!!! It looks like a hobo lives in it)
    Loved your post…you will always remember the tricks on how to get by…glad you are in school…the money is well spent, even if you have to carry a balance…
    just thinking of how I once got by brings back some strange memories…my first apartment was furnished with luxury furniture made out of cardboard boxes covered with contact paper! Wow – at least now I have a real coffee table! 😀

  5. Hubby is a “landman” or an independent contractor for an oil and gas leasing company which leases farmer’s acreage for oil and gas exploration. That is why we are out in the Boonies every week and live out of motels. I am his secretary.how cool is that! We both worked for our other halves. Being his secretary is actually how I met Devoted Spouse once upon a time…

  6. I have not changed to much. Poor to poorer! 🙂 However, as one also addicted to books…paperbackswap.com is a good option. If you have not looked into it, you may want to. I will be honest, I looked into it, signed up and have not gone any further. However a good friend of mine has received and given TONS of books through it. Just an idea!
    Other than that…I think I may be postponing my ‘return to seminary’ in part due to the economy…but who knows…I seem to change my mind every two hours!
    hi sweetie – thanks for the tip on the paperbackswap.com — Delaney had me look into bookmooch.com and I signed up already — it’s pretty cool, too. I love stuff like that. I hope you don’t have to postpone your return to seminary — I know how much this journey means to me and that’s why I’m not giving it up even though I go into debt. I’m prayin’ for ya! 😉

  7. Wow when you hear about other’s lives, doesn’t it put things into perspective…
    We are in Canada and know that it is the WHOLE world feeling the squeeze these days.
    We are pretty poor but have a home and every day I count my blessings…
    🙂
    Sweetie, I’m counting blessings too believe me. I know I’m so much better off than many and I try and give back to my community and my church — but sometimes I simply wish I’d win the lottery, ya know? Oh yeah, I guess you have to play the lottery to win it…oh well…

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