Friday, October 11, 2013

7 Quick Takes: The Financial Stress and Birthday Edition

Yes, we're affected, but no, we're not. Not really.

Yes, my husband works for the U.S. government and yes, we're not getting a paycheck until further notice. We have enough in the pantry and enough in savings to manage for a couple of months before we have to go into debt or sell any belongings to get by. In our young adult years my husband and I have both experienced real financial stress--the kind that rejoices that there will be eggs in the fridge for the month because you just found spare change in a coat pocket from last winter--so we know how to stretch a dollar. We have stockpiled for this temporary emergency, so though we won't be getting paid, we'll be getting by just fine.

Pray for those less able to pull through!

If it were just about health insurance, it would have been over by now.

Yes, if the President and the Democratic Party were just offering health insurance, my family would be well within our rights to be ticked off at the Republican Party (for more than just waiting until almost too late to actually address this issue). But...but...when people and Catholic organizations are being forced to choose between the teachings of the Church and personal conscience and complying with their government's new regulations about providing out of our very own pockets birth control and abortion services, it's no longer about healthcare. It's about bullying. Without more and reasonable exceptions, it's antiCatholic, plain and simple.

If they'd only wanted to provide healthcare for all, they wouldn't be fighting tooth and nail for just those two services. They'd compromise. And if they did, the Church wouldn't be fighting back either. We'd be fighting alongside them. This insistence on free abortions tells me clearly that it never really was about healthcare. It's pretty obvious it's not.

Meanwhile, if we have to sell a car to protect the Little Sisters of the Poor from Big Government bullies, so be it.

As far as taking one for the faith goes, this is nothing to our brothers and sisters in Egypt. Chin up and carry on.

The Blog Silence

Anyway, if you've been wondering where I've been lately, I've been at home, cutting every corner I could find. Corner cutting is time consuming. Just as an example, instead of buying alfalfa this week, I took a hoe and "hayed" weeds growing outside of the pasture. I'm meal planning so intricately that I only light the oven every third day. I'm a bit busier than usual. Add in a bit of panic at the news and you get an absentee blogger. I'm done fretting now that I've got a groove to get into. I'm back!

Quick Money Saving Tip

Don't run the dryer, but use that dishwasher: when the sun is available to dry your clothes for free, running the dryer is like tossing dollars out of the dryer vent. On the other hand, using a dishwasher sterilizes your dishes. It kills germs. If you spend an extra $5 a month on electricity and save yourself one trip to the doctor because of a secondary infection following a round of cold and flu--even for one person over the course of the year--you more than break even.

Quick Sanity Saving Tip

If you are having to cut back and you have kids, start reading aloud the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. It helps change the tone from privation to pioneer. I know it may sound silly, but linking your frugality to living a bit more like Americans of a hundred years ago makes it all a bit more adventurous than arduous for the kids. It also helps the adults get into the spirit of things. There's a whole lot less spirit of privation when there's less complaining.

(Don't!) Take Two!

Our first set of ducks were stolen out from under our very noses. There were no feathers scattered about, no breaks in the fencing, no blood splats, disturbed dirt, or other evidence of four legged thieves and our neighbors only missed chickens on the nights they missed locking their hutch, so we've got two legged poultry thieves around.

Another set of duckies hatched at the local food pantry and have grown enough to be a nuisance, so we were called to take them off their hands. We happily obliged. We've moved the pen closer to our house in hopes of keeping this set safe and happy until they can be producing cute little duckies of their own.

Somebody is Eight!

We are off to the park today to celebrate with our friends who are going to "drop by and play with us." Can you believe that eight years ago, we met face to face for the very first time!

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