Saturday, December 6, 2008

Low Tide

Oops. Forgot to blog in November.

This is the longest I have managed to keep a blog going and I'm really, really tired of starting over (I've done it 3 or 4 times already). So I'll make a little effort. Do I have any readers anymore? Probably not.

Let's see...

At eight-year-old's swim lessons I was reading Parents magazine. Paging through it I was struck by one thought - and it wasn't what a lousy parent I am. No. I was looking more at the ads than the editorial and I kept thinking I don't need any of this stuff. My kids don't need any of this stuff. Nothing. Not one thing in that whole magazine (the December issue) do we actually need.

I struggle with materialism. It is so hard to separate out the waaaaants from the neeeeds. And if I, a reasonably intelligent adult woman, have a hard time keeping my priorities straight, how hard it must be for children.

Financially we are not in very good shape. Just five short years ago we had six months salary in savings. Now we have about half a month. There is plenty of blame to go around. My fault. His fault. The real estate crash. I've got regrets. I've got hard feelings. And there is no relief in sight.

It is to the point that I am in a panic over our finances. Not a good place to be in before Christmas. The "budget" is tight this year. Normally Mr. Bee receives a Christmas bonus but there is none this year.

And it doesn't help that our clothes dryer just died.

The tide is really low...And I'm waiting for my ship to come in.

Initially in mid-October when this situation was growing rapidly worse, I was feeling very pessimistic. I was thinking we weren't going to celebrate Christmas at all. Now I'm looking at Christmas more creatively. I've put up almost ever decoration I own - the house looks festive! I'm brainstorming and surfing the internet for inexpensive gift ideas and I've come up with some winners. Christmas will happening.

Making lemonade out of those lemons.

Oddly enough what turned my thinking around was remembering Charles Dickens' "Christmas Carol." Scrooge, who was rich and could certainly afford a fancy Christmas, didn't celebrate it. The poor Cratchit family, however, did.

I'd rather be a Cratchit than a Scrooge.

Now to squash the materialism and put together a working budget for '09.


Milehimama said...

I'm still here and reading...

BTW - about the dryer. Spin the clothes twice, then put them on hangers and hang them in the house (from curtain and shower rods, or even directly in the closet, just make sure air can circulate!)

It will also make the air in your home a little more humid, which holds heat better, which makes it feel warmer so you can save a little $ on the heating bill.

If the jeans are crunchy, try rolling them up after they are dry.

Hang in there!

Sue Bee said...

The dryer died with a load of whites in it. I had little socks and undies laid out to dry all over the place. Added humidity & home decoration.

Mr. Bee went to the Sears outlet and bought a new dryer - old floor model. 50% off regular price, plus a $30 online coupon and 12-months no interest. Yeah! We are making excellent progress through a weeks worth of laundry.

Milehimama said...

I've been thinking about you- hope you are feeling better, too.

Gotta love those sales!

Sue Bee said...

I'm doing good. I think the harsh reality phase is over and the roll-up-the-sleeves and get to work phase has begun.

Store sales & gas prices are putting a smile on my face.