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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Little Miss Betty Homemaker

You know, we are all creatures of habit & truly a generation of convenience & gratification. What would we do without cell phones, microwaves, credit cards, & drive-thrus? I have always been just as reliant on these as the next person, but recently, I've been wondering...is it all really necessary?  (Just please don't take my laptop, Vin Diesel, or my Twilight movies! LOL)

Our ancestors lived far more simple lives & they survived the times. Justin & I have always commented on how much "easier" it would have been back then. Now don't get me wrong, I know that they had to work HARD, but they were satisfied. Today, no one ever seems to have "enough". They are always working & striving for the next step. What happened to enjoying life where we are? In light of that, it made the wheels start turning...........I don't belong to this world, so why am I trying to compete with it? God wants us to be good stewards of what He has given us.

For a year now, we have been living on 1 income. It hasn't been easy, some bills have been late, we have had to say no to some things we wanted, but we still have our home & no one is going hungry! I have tried to cut back in some areas, but not as much as I needed to. Withing the past few weeks, God has really opened my eyes. Not only do I need to control spending, but I need to be frugal (ie. CHEAP) & I need to be resourceful. So I have been doing lots of homework on this.
  • I use coupons & I usually save about $40 everytime I go shopping. I really want this savings to be more, but its a great start!
  • I have found numerous websites with wealths of information on them. My favorites right now are:
  • http://groceryshrink.com/  tips on how to spend less & save more, recipes for making your own household cleaners - a few I have tried & they actually work
  • http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com/  more tips on spending & saving, frugal recipes
  • I have started TRYING to use a budget & stick to it. I have always hated this because our "budget" on paper is UGLY! Trust me, we are always in the red. Its only by God's grace that we make it from month to month & that is just one reason that I KNOW I'm supposed to be at home.
  • I plan a menu for the whole month that way I don't have to keep running to the grocery store (this month has been hard b/c the kids are sick, so I keep forgetting something b/c my mind is preoccupied)
  • I have a cash envelope for groceries (see note above - ugh) & gas
This is just the beginning! We are increasing the size of our garden this year & planting several things that we have never tried before (including potatoes - I am so excited).  I usually can & freeze each year, but this year I have a new found desire for Betty Homemaker. Justin hunts so we usually have an abundance of deer meat. We already have cows & pretty soon one of those lucky(?) gals will be in our freezer. We are going to start raising pigs (we've done this before) & Austin wants chickens (I'm not sure about this, but I'm willing to try anything). Now if only I could sew......
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