I try to be frugal with all my available resources, whether it’s water, fossil fuels, food, or money. There are times when that’s harder than others. This week has been one of those times. I haven’t been frugal with much of anything this week, but I thought it only fair that I share the good and the bad with you so that you can fully understand that it’s all just part of the journey.
Let’s start with last Sunday for a change…
Sunday: Michael woke with cramps and a fever. After having been discharged from the hospital last Friday evening after a major surgery, we knew something was wrong, so back to the ER we went. Luckily, we only live 1.3 miles from the VA campus and after it became obvious that they needed to do stomach scans and that I couldn’t accompany him through that, I was able to come home for lunch, which enabled me to eat some healthy leftovers I had in the ‘frig, as well as let the dog out for a bit. So, Sunday wasn’t too bad-except for the FOX news blaring from that blasted TV in the family waiting room! I brought my MP3 player and library books and Kindle Fire back with me to help pass the time while I waited. Savings made possible by eating lunch at home: At least $5.00, but I stopped on the way home from the hospital when I left the hospital at 8 o’clock that evening and bought a sub for my dinner. I spent $5 but it was a situation that I felt at ease with. I didn’t want to go home to eat alone, it had been a long stressful day, and the sub was delicious!
Monday: The day was pretty enough to hang the wet laundry on the ‘solar dryer’ but I opted for the dryer instead. The convenience factor outweighed the environmental factor on this day. No savings there. But I did put a pot of soup in my solar cooker to simmer all day before I left for the hospital that morning, so I wasn’t tempted to eat out again come supper-time. That worked well, and gave me many bowls of soup throughout the week, and maybe cancelled out the energy used to run the dryer.
Tuesday: I’d been ignoring the creeping mildew on the bottom of my shower curtain liner for weeks and on this day found it disgusting! So, I cut the damn thing off, which was the problem to begin with. It was too long and had allowed soap to accumulate in its’ too-long folds. It’s now the correct length, and looks like new. Instant gratification and I saved about $7 not having to buy a new liner. Check out the before…
And the ‘after’…
Wednesday: By this time, I’m cranky, tired of going back and forth to the hospital, and sick of leftovers. A sweet friend brought me a box of fancy tea, a bar of fancy soap and treated me to Thai food for dinner-AFTER helping me work in the garden! Other friends supported me throughout the week too, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least mention their kindnesses; recipes for healthy probiotics were typed out and shared with me by one friend, a slice of home-made pound cake for me, along with a quart of raw goat’s milk to make the doctor-recommended yogurt for Michael was given by another, an unexpected lunch date with yet another helped break up a long day, phone calls to check on my well-being, a gallon of fresh apple cider left in my door, offers to let the dog out to pee during my long hours away and emails of love and support all combined to get me through a rough week. PRICELESS
Thursday: After six weeks without a trim, a sign pointing the way to a new hair salon to get my hair washed, cut and dried for $14.99 sucked me in. The shampoo was a luxurious pampering, the cut was perfect, and when it came time to pay, the hairdresser whipped out a coupon for me to use, getting it all for $9.99! Savings: $5.00, plus several compliments later. Money well spent.
Friday: Michael was released from the hospital today and we are happy he’s home. The all-day rain meant I couldn’t hang out clothes, couldn’t work in the garden and couldn’t use my solar cooker. I did get in my early morning walk with the dog before the rains began, and they stopped long enough for me to go help a friend in need this evening. Michael’s on a soft foods diet, so I fixed him scrambled eggs for supper, while I enjoyed the Asian slaw my neighbor brought to me. We had cups of tea with honey, turned on the Halloween lights that I’d strung up to chase away the gloom of the week, and listened to music while we read this evening. Priceless.
From personal health issues to Ebola pandemics, the ability to remain resilient during times of conflict is important. Adapting to change in our lives can mean the difference between simple surviving or thriving. Adaptation can be difficult, and almost always results in added expense. By always being on the lookout for ways I can ‘live well on less’, I can pamper myself with things like restaurant meals, electric clothes drying, haircuts or other treats when I need them most-without guilt, without debt, or without hindering my ability to help others that are trying to get through their week too-at least for now. The day may come when there’s no money or resources for these treats but I’m convinced that COMMUNITY can take up the slack. Remember to always be kind to others; you have no idea what they’re going through. Have a great weekend!
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