Thursday, October 23, 2008

No Longer Spittin'...

Now I am just mad. Where is the responsibility in this country?? I am responsible for the decisions I make, good or bad. Let's say I allot myself $50(Just an example...that is not in OUR budget!!) for eating out this week. At the beginning of the week I got to a fancy Japanese restaurant and spend $40. Now I only have $10 left to get me through the week. Let's go even further and say that $50 is all I have for my lunches each day that I work. What now? That was Monday and I have 4 more days to go. What if on Tuesday I spend $8 on my lunch. Now I am down to $2 for Wed, Thurs, and Fri. I manage to eat for $2 on Wed. but now I have no more money. What do I do?? Use a credit card? Borrow from a friend? Freeload off of family with more money? Beg from strangers? Fast for three days to teach me a lesson? The responsibility is on me. I made a poor choice and I must learn a lesson or continue to suffer every week.

I learned this lesson pretty early in my life. I moved out on my own at 18 and moved back home broke and in debt a couple years later. I freeloaded off of my family most of the time for food. I learned some lessons(mostly though I waited until later and learned with my darling hubby about finances from Dave Ramsey) about living within my means and also about getting better paying jobs. I never had a degree to shop with but I was still able to secure a job making very good money waitressing and then working in bank processing. The bank processing job was horrible hours but I had a decent job with benefits. It was perfect to work around my schedule at the local community college where I was working toward a degree in communications (after two wasted years pursuing a nursing degree that I decided I no longer wished to get).

I came from a dirt poor family. At one point after my parents first divorced, our family consisted of a mom working as a nurse aid for minimum wage supporting 4 girls(2 TEENS, one elementary aged and one preschooler). My father paid $80 per week child support, unless he was laid off. He had a great job and chose voluntary lay-offs most of the time and then only had to pay $40 per week. The only program my mom accepted was REDUCED(I am sure we qualified for free) lunches. We had less than nothing and I can remember days when there was very little to eat. My mom learned the art of frugal. We had grandparents who put out a huge garden(they didn't need it!) and we picked and froze vegetables. I was raised on beans and potatoes, potatoes and beans. That got us through. 2 years later my mom remarried and we were suddenly bumped up from below poverty to lower middle class where I remained until I moved out at 18 and discovered poverty again. ( ;

We all start out on a pretty level playing field here in America. We choose to do well in school-for some that comes easier, or we choose to not do well in school. After school we choose to go to college, vocational school or begin training in a vocation not requiring school. Sometimes we choose a path of an entry level job (minimum wage). Whatever our choice, it is one we have to live with. After that, we choose our spouse. We have the option to choose someone frugal, someone who is a big spender, or something in-between.

I do not consider my life cushy. My husband works VERY hard at a job people consider cushy but it isn't. The post office hires people off the street as casuals-no test required-and they often quit after one day. Not only does he walk all day but he carries at least a 50 lb mail bag. He is proud of his job and we make alot of sacrifices to live on one income. I would consider us middle middle class. Through careful planning and frugal living we are able to save money and plan for life. My kids don't eat junk food because it isn't worth the price. As we collected food for a food drive the other day, one of my children commented, "These people are eating better than we are." There was some truth to that. We hardly ever have prepackaged snacks, not because they cost alot, mostly because I don't see that as "better". Of course my kids do, but when they are grown I hope they will appreciate being fed an apple instead of a package of fruit snacks.

The government does not have the responsibility of feeding, clothing, bailing out it citizens from debt. Social programs(and more importantly the dependence on social programs) have been the demise of this country. We are not a socialist country. We seem to be trying to be-but we aren't. When the government comes in and tries to "FIX" people's lives, it creates a false sense of "RESCUE" and causes a breakdown in communities and churches where charity and goodwill should be.

I am all for charity...I just don't think it should come from the government.

PS.-Welcome Jon, I am so happy to have you as a reader!!

PSS>Mia is one of the thriftiest women I know. She won't be waiting around for that economic stimulus check-BUT, if she gets it she will make it go farther than anyone I know. She inspires me to be a better steward and appreciates every blessing that comes her way!!

1 comment:

Jason said...

I agree! Yipee! We have one political thing in common! Maybe there are more......