I’m going to share a little personal background here today as a preface to this story. Long story, short -we are partners in a small business that has hit a bump in the road. Might bounce back…might not. Time will tell. My husband has chosen to remain a partner in the company, but seek outside employment. He’s working in a job he enjoys with a great company, but we definitely aren’t living in the same financial world we were before. The financial downturn started for us at the beginning of last summer. The income slowly started declining and last spring stopped almost totally.
I mentioned in an earlier blog that I had yearned for a simpler life, and then realized that what I really needed was a more intentional life. Well, here we are. There just simply isn’t enough money to make ends meet. We never lived extravagantly. We don’t live in big, elaborate house, have never taken a “big” vacation and just aren’t into fashion and jewelry. But, we never had to think seriously about a trip to IKEA or how much we spent on groceries.
Now, even though we’re watching the income and expenditures, watching isn’t enough. Expenses are being evaluated and prioritized. We’ve decided we don’t like living a circular existence of just trying to make ends meet. We don’t have a lot of debt other than the house and a car, but there is some. Oh, and did I mention we have two kids in college (loans anyone?)
Today, we assessed the pantry, the fridge, and the bank account. We made a menu and a list and set off to the store with $70. We kept a tally of our spending and made some hard decisions about what was nutritious, what we could afford and what we could live without. Hard choices. It wasn’t much fun at all…until I realized this was all a first-world problem. We were in a grocery store full of food, we have the education to make nutritional decisions, and it isn’t a forever problem for us.
We are making the choice to live frugally in order to improve our situation. For so many, this is not and will never be a choice. We are blessed.
It wasn’t easy to share this and even now I’m hesitant to hit the publish button (but I guess I did because you are reading this). Why did I share? It’s all part of the journey I started here on this blog.
Sharing our stories is important.