Monday, October 20, 2008

Economic Downturn and Homesteader Outlook

We have talked as a family about going on a "money diet", as my best friend often calls it. Now that our stock value has plummeted, we are looking at it as a good time to tighten our belts and teach the kids more about living frugally. We have never been really extravagant, but have always had as much as we needed. An article I read had the following tips for keeping a homesteader's mindset, even if you are not a homesteader. Here are the comments"

Avoid the feeling of depravity and start thinking of it as creativity.

Before purchasing anything (clothing, food, household item, equipment, etc.), there are several questions that run through the mind of someone who considers themselves a homesteader. These questions help decide whether he or she should make the purchase. Here are just a few examples:

* "Can I make it myself for less than it costs to buy it?"
* "Do I have something already that works in place of this item just as well?"
* "How often will I use this new item?" (Hint: If it's not used regularly, don't purchase it.)
* "Can I do without this item?"
* "Do we actually need it or do we just want it?"

When choosing to do without or make do or make it myself, the homesteader looks at the whole event as a way to be creative. Creativity is central to this new mindset, not just a budget or skimping, but creatively finding new ways to do things, new ways to make things, and new ways to use, reuse and recycle things. It's a challenge and a game to someone with a homesteading mindset to see just how happily and simply we can live.

1 comment:

Val Foster said...

This is a great blog post. Thank you for sharing. I've never thought of myself as a homesteader, but maybe I am in a lot of ways. I grew up in a large family, seven kids, and we did fine but didn't have a lot of extras. We did okay by being frugal and using common sense.

Now I'm in my 50's, but have never strayed far from that mindset, especially regarding financial matters. I guess my parents taught me well, better than I realized at the time. Because I've always been frugal, in good times and not so good times. And it has served me well, I've never regretted it. So kudos to you, for this blog post. And I see that you are a born-again Christian, and so am I. I think that has a lot to do with being frugal, and a good steward too, don't you?

Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving your kind comment. You may very well be an artist and not realize it or feel comfortable seeing yourself that way. At any rate, don't feel abnormal or weird if you have frustrations trying to create art. That seems to be very, very normal for most and probably all artists, even though we may tend to feel all alone in that situation. I probably have more frustration and out of the zone time making art than ever being in the zone, and having it come freely and easily. That's why I'm so happy and grateful when I find myself in the zone -- it just doesn't happen that often.

It would be great if making art was easy, but then again, life isn't easy, so why should we expect making art to be easy? Something I think about often.

Happy to make your acquaintance, and I'm going to put you on my blogroll, if that's okay with you.