Oh no!! Not the "E" word!!!

You all know what word I'm talking about. I cringe just thinking about it.ECONOMY..., there I said it!  In my opinion, the ugliest word in 2009.  You hear about it every time you turn on the radio or TV or pick up a newspaper.  The failing economy.  Three words that have reaked havoc on so many families in the United States.  Businesses are forced to lay-off employees and some have even filed bankruptcy and closed their doors.  Thousands of families are losing their homes everyday due to bank foreclosures.  I personally was laid off back in March of this year.  My husband was laid off in September.  And to be quite honest, the job market isn't looking very promising.  Thankfully, he has a marketable skill (beyond his four year degree in IT) as a meat-cutter, which is keeping food on our table and a roof over our heads, for now. 

So what can an unemployed, suburban wife and mother do to help ease the financial burdens facing my family in these trying times?  Down-size!!  That's right folks, it's not just for big business anymore.  These days you have to treat your family finances the same way a business owner would.  You have to start asking yourself some pretty important questions.  Such as, "What can I live without?"and "How can I stretch my money to make it work for our family?"

"What can I live without?"  For starters, we no longer require that super-fast, top-of-the-line, high-speed internet connection.  Yeah, it's nice to have... but it's not a necessity.  So we down-sized to the slower, cheaper version.  Next, the way-too-expensive local cable provider had to go.  We switched over to a much more affordable sattelite provider and even ended up getting more HD channels for a lot less money.  NICE!  Also, having school pics made is nice.  They have pretty backgrounds and will engrave your kids name in the corner along with the year; but I can take him to a local super-center type chain store and have a package of very nice, professional pictures made for a much more reasonable price.  Or for that matter, I can break out my really nice camera and take some pictures myself.

"How can I stretch my money to make it work for our family?"    Subscribe to your Sunday paper.  That is one of the places you will find tons of great sale papers and of coarse, you can't forget the coupons!!  What could be better than getting an even lower price on products that you were needing to buy anyway??  And if you look around a bit, you will find lots of grocery store chains that offer double coupons EVERYDAY and occassionally they run specials that offer triple coupons!!  One of my favorite phrases to hear at the check-out stand these days is, "You saved $$$$."  SWEET!!  Every penny saved in this "E" word, keeps that roof over my and my families heads for a little while longer. 

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