Blog Action Day

As part of Blog Action Day, I want to take time to give Thanks.

Seriously, thanks to God for all the abundance of gifts and opportunities I have.

With the state of the economy, Chad and I have been talking about how to be more responsible about how we spend our money. Whether we’re going to do it is another thing, but right now, we both want to try.

I think the biggest thing we need to wrap our heads around is that we can live well well well below our means.  Most people do.  That means no coffee… ok, coffee, but making it at home.  Carrying my lunch to work.  And conciously thinking through each and every purchase.

I should be able to do this. I’m pretty sure this is how my parents managed to live on my dad’s teacher salary and farm income when I was little.  There are lots of things I don’t remember doing or having as a child, but I can’t say it wasn’t a happy childhood.

We never went without heat or water.  We never were hungry.  We wore hand-me-downs and ate government cheese, but it didn’t mean we were deprived.  I don’t know if that was me not knowing any different, or things were really different in the 70s and 80s.  I’m guessing it was me not knowing anything different.

I guess the point I’m getting at, is there are lots of people who can’t throw extravagant parties for their kids. Lots of kids who can’t afford an iPod.  And lots of parents who can’t give their kids everything they want. But unfortunately there are people who can’t always put food on the table or even heat for the house.

I’m not sure how to tackle this problem.  I do try to make regular donations to the food shelves. I “round up” my grocery bill when they ask. I make an effort to take food to the drop box at church. I think honestly though what I really need to do is be conscious of my true needs, of each purchase and understanding what I could truly go without. Maybe raising my own awareness to how I spend my money will help me feel a little more connected to the truly good things in my life and maybe it will provide a clearer picture on what I can do to help.

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