Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Money, Money, Money

Like most folks nowadays, Craze and I are pinching pennies. . .also nickels, dimes and quarters for that matter.

Back in my corporate-life-make-lots-of-moolah days, I could be a bit of a spendthrift if truth be told. It was not unusual for me to hit up Bloomingdales and buy not one, but two Coach purses in one shopping spree just because I felt like it. Well, sister, those days sure are gone! It seems like it costs almost as much as a pricey purse just to fill the tank of the Saturn Vue!

Working for myself for the past three years has been a great respite from my almost 20 years of endlessly climbing up that ladder that had no end and left me hopeless and exhausted. But the truth is, I've made a LOT less money. A lot less. But we've gotten by ok.

But last night right before bed, Craze opened our latest credit card statement that had only grocery and Target purchases and started quizzing me about how the bill could possibly be so much for just a month's worth of sustenance. We ended up having our typical monthly discussion about money and thinking of ways to economize even more. I was so tired, but after that, I just couldn't sleep. I just lay there and worried about money. Money, money, money.

My work has been SUPER slow for the past few months. Thankfully, I had a really great first quarter. Really great. And that's been keeping us going since Craze's work has also been slow and not so profitable lately. But with mortgage, insurance, groceries, not to mention Craze's recent $1,300+ hospital stay and our forthcoming bundle of joy, money, or more precisely, the lack thereof, is on my mind a lot.

Yesterday I spent the day on the computer making a list of people to contact for potential work, reaching out to some old contacts, etc. Next week, I'm meeting with someone who's been a good customer. Just trying to stir the pot and see what might materialize in the way of work.

In the meantime, I'm still clipping coupons, remaking leftovers, growing my own tomatoes and peppers and using the A/C less. I think our next big bite-the-bullet move will be to get rid of the cleaning lady. She only comes twice a month for a few hours, but she is less than great and won't even do the stuff I originally hired her to do (like scrub the kitchen floor and clean the base boards). I was going to let her go her when I left my real job, but her husband had recently passed away and I just didn't have the heart to do it. But now, three years on, I think it has to be done. Sorry, Margaret.

In the meantime, I'm going to put my prayer out into the universe for better, more profitable days--not just for my family, but for all those who are feeling the pinch or, even worse, losing their homes to floods and foreclosure. We don't need the freedom to splash out on Coach purses, but what a blessing it is not to worry about the roof over your head or being able to feed your family. May we all be blessed with good work to do, a comfy place to call home, food on the table and the peace of mind that a better tomorrow is hopefully just around the next bend.

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