This is on my home page today:
Good News in Bad Economy: Shark attacks on decline
Ok, seriously? Is there anyone out there who really cares? I mean, we aren't sure how to pay the bills, credit cards are going through the roof (not ours though it is creeping up faster than I like), people are loosing jobs, houses and cars and that's the good news! Less shark attacks?! You've got to be kidding me.
According to my kids, we're poor. I, of course, see things much differently than a 7 and 10 year old do. I feel very fortunate to be where we are and to have the things we have right now. I suppose if I had the money to travel to shark infested waters I might find some comfort in that news. But the only shark infested waters I have to deal with these days exist in the form of bank statements and bills. Well, the laundry pile might be referred to as such but I'm talking about financial issues so I guess it doesn't count. Financially speaking, we are pretty tight these days. We are sitting on the edge of potential layoffs like so many others. And our savings is nearly gone. Yet, somehow we manage to get by each month. Our bills are all paid and on time (usually). We have food in the pantry, clothes on our backs and the kids are even able to participate in occasional extra curricular activities. If you knew our actual income you would probably wonder how we do it. The answer is not a simple one but it can be simplified with two words - God's Grace. Just when we think we are going under something happens that throws us a lifeline. We survive from one lifeline to the next. We don't eat out much - once a month? I make homemade pizza every week. Our last date Rick and I went to Applebees during happy hour and ate half price appetizers and had water. $12 (I think Rick actually had ice tea). We don't own a flat screen t.v. and our BBQ has more rust than a bucketof bolts left in the rain. In fourteen years of marriage the only new furniture we bought was our bedroom set and kitchen table. Everything else has been handed down. BUT IT WORKS! Most of the kids new clothes have come exclusively from Goodwill and Value Village. Paige's birthday gift came from Craigslist and cost less than half of the new price. I cut corners whenever and whereever I can. Something as small as leaving the laundry in the washer overnight - I don't do it because then it has to be rewashed to get rid of the mildew smell and it uses more soap and more water. It adds up. Someday I hope to not have to always be so diligent. It would be nice if it were a bit more of a choice. But for now it isn't. For now the economy is bad. For now we all worry about what's next and pray for an end. For now we all dream of the day that we might be able to go somewhere that shark infested waters are actually a concern.