Monday, February 9, 2009

Austerity Measures

Well, we've run out of gas, so to speak. We're flat busted. The used engine Sweetie bought for the truck has given us nothing but grief and we're without wheels again.

He stomped in the door about supper time, huffing and puffing. Had walked a mile and a half from the crossroads. After resting a spell he called the neighbor and asked him to go down and pull the truck off the road with our backhoe. Sweetie's emphysema/COPD has taken its toll and he's asleep now in his recliner. I doubt he has the energy to walk to the bedroom and I'm not about to disturb him.

After spending $100 for his son's bus ticket to come up here to see his grandmother, the remainder of our cash went for another truck part (what escapes me just now) and a full tank of gas. I didn't realize all the cash was gone but, a $50 bill wouldn't have made a difference in this situation anyway.

Some of his SS is in the checking account but, that has to pay lights and phone later this month.

I haven't a clue as to what we'll do but, you know what? I ain't worrying about it. I truly believe things happen for a reason and it's how we respond to them that matters.

Being the pragmatic, resourceful, contented person that I am, I know that wringing our hands, bitching, scheming, or complaining won't change the situation. 'Course, I could have adopted this attitude with Sweetie's son, but hey, I'm also human. Adversity and I have met many times and I'm still here!

The friend we previously borrowed a vehicle from has left for Arizona - and sold that vehicle - so that option's out. The only thing we'd need a vehicle for is for Sweetie to drive six miles to see his mom. Somehow, she's still hanging on and was asking for him today, so he went for a visit. Otherwise, he would have stayed home. He's been skipping a day here and there. I think it's become harder for him to see his mom slipping away. He sits for hours just staring out the window.

So, My response to the "no truck" news was to futher tighten the belt. We'll be cutting back in the following ways: A package of 4-5 bratwurst will be stretched to two meals; peanut butter and crackers instead of peanut butter and bread; the furnace has been turned off and will not be turned back on; called the phone company and cancelled the high speed Internet - saves $19 a month; no more canned cat food or dog food after our supply is gone; there's one light on in the living room at night now, instead of two or three; the TV's on from 5-7 p.m. and 10-11:30 p.m. (TV's on a power strip and shut off when not in use); water heater turned down another 10 degrees; dish water heated on the wood stove; all cooking on wood stove, thought oatmeal is microwaved (even though it's rolled oats, not the instant crap).

I know none of these measures is going to put money in our hands anytime soon. But I feel better just doing something!

Thank God, I'm an obsessive/compulsive person who enjoys finding more ways to conserve, so none of these measures bother me.

We have a couple credit cards but will do just about anything not to use them. How would we pay them off?

So, $654 a month, plus food stamps, will have to do. Life could be worse, you know. We could be homeless!

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