- Personal Finance»
- Family Budget
Stretch Your Money, House Hold Budget
Grow a God's Garden
Taking A New Look Into Your Household
Once more, I looked forward to tackling the age old problem of recession in our country, and the financial crisis. The first thing a mother does for her family is to make sure her family can function and everyone is taken care of. Fathers on the other hand are out making a living to help bring in funds for the family. My husband and I worked for years to support our three children and ourselves. Then one day, my husband became ill, then the bread winner of the family reverted back on me. I had to support my family and pay the bills and pay for his $500 a month prescription medications. It took us three years before my husband could get on social security disability and thanks to people like Vocational Rehab that helped him attempt to recover and get help. Thanks to one man out there in Congress who represented Georgia, Congressman Bob Barr, who finally said hey our people do not need to wait three years to get help. I praise his name to this day, because he not only fought to help in congress for my husband, but he fought to cut the time to no more than 6 months in getting help for all Americans that qualified. I think it was unique that Bob Barr came on CNN and my husband got to personally thank him on television, when they allowed call ins. Today my husband and I both depend on social security to pay for our needs.
So with a budget needed and hardship of our economy, then I have to make things work around my house. The first thing I thought of was not to plant just flowers but a garden in my own yard. I plant tomatoes, squash, cucumbers,and brocolli, turnips, and whatever else I can get to grow. Unfortunately it has been rough this year because of a drought. Our temperatures are now at 104 and one day 108. So gardening may be a rough and tough way to put food on a table, but I never give up. My God's garden as I all it is my hope and inspiration that we can survive and we can try to make things better. The giant sunflower that stands tall and large signifies to me that it represents hope over my yard. It is liking planting a seed of faith. I always call my garden a God's garden, because if it is plentiful, then I can share with neighbors, family, and friends to help them to. I think it is wonderful, when I hear communities who have set aside gardens for those who want to raise their own vegetables. I try to raise vegetables that are organic in nature, and I use techniques like planting marigold flowers for running away the cut worms that might cut my tomato plants.
There are many other things you can do like think of your shopping. I do visit the dollar stores for items that only cost me $1.00 like laundry detergents, dish soap, and some things like packages of noodles or pasta. I select foods like ground turkey instead of beef, simply because I can buy a pound of turkey for less, than I can pay for the same amount of beef. So looking at cutting costs is important to me. I try to limit my largest meal to feed 4 people in my house for no more than $5.00 per major meal. We eat sandwiches for lunch or soup. We eat cereal or oatmeal for breakfast. That is a tough job now with the cost of everything that has gone up. You just have to be creative and think economize. Beans are always a good source of protein and they can be used in nutritious meals. Suggested staple meals in my house are chili mac, chicken Alfredo, chili, Shepherds Pie, turkey burgers, hot dogs or corn dogs with fries, fresh vegetable like squash out of my garden cooked into a corn bread dish, stew mac that is my latest invention, and anything that an be nutritious and healthy. Substitute wheat bread instead of white bread and your body feels a lot fuller. Also think about cutting coupons,and make sure you buy the cost cutter brands and look at weight and proportions. It pays to shop around for the best prices. Even though you have a large discount store, then you should do price shopping, sometimes if you look into their pricing, then you see a higher price than some other stores. Check on weight ,size, and quality of what you are getting for your money.
As far as trips, then I could have put a lot of money in my tank of gas, but lately I only put about one gallon of gas in my car and make myself use it very sparingly. That means we take far less trips to the store,and absolutely no vacations. I am proud I own a car that allows me to function like this. Our gas prices fluctuate on a weekly basis, and right now our gas is about $3.60 a gallon. So you have to think less gas in tank. I look back on the old days in my life and realize those days will never be there again. I am living in a world of economic hardship.
Now, how can we cut down other bills around the house. Electricity was a bigger expense last year in my house. 4 months cost me $1600., because we had to use window air,and it was quite hot. I had my oldest son visiting, and he had a heart condition that required us to keep the temp cool all the time. Now this year we are paying a set rate of $167. a month just for electricity no matter how much I use. That is not good, but better than $1600. If we look at our electric grids, then we need to know that black outs can happen, if we do not all conserve some energy no matter what. Lately this year our power has gone out for no reason about 4 times. Turn off unneeded lights and go for the solar lighting outdoors at night. I love mine, and someone recently was nice and bought them for me. That doesn't happen everyday. It is always good to have emergency candles and flash lights around for any emergency.
In conclusion, I would like to say that you need to resolve yourself to not wasting money, economize, save energy, and think of ways that are unique like my God's garden that not only produces food but may help you and your neighbors and friends. It not only provides food but gives you an inspiration of food for thought. Always grow a Sunflower for shining on that hope in your life. Also that Sunflower can be harvested for its sunflower seeds. Those are nutritious. It is all in the attitude that you must look at , when surviving this world.