Thursday, September 3, 2009

a personal struggle

I'm trying to find more ways to save money.  No surprise there, I'm sure.  As I've admitted before, this has never been my strong point.  Not having been raised in a Christian home, my only teaching on this matter has come via the Bible and through sermons, these last twelve years. Yeah, I learn slowly.  Twelve years should have been sufficient.  By now, I should know about as much as a depression-era housewife.

There are challenges; I am a generous person, and that characteristic gets in the way of frugality.  On the flip side of every strength, one will always find a weakness.  I know the Lord well enough to surmise that we will be on the poor side until God can trust us with more resources.  How embarrassing to admit it, but that is what I truly believe.  Of course, there are other lessons we are learning--humility, compassion, appreciation, simple pleasures.

I am not suffering discontent due to our circumstances.  Rather, it is kind of an invigorating challenge--even fun sometimes.

Lately, the writing has been on the wall regarding our inability to afford disposable diapers.  However, Anna is so wiggly during changes, it's a challenge just to properly affix the velcro tapes.  I would surely stick her, if I had to use diaper pins.  So, I have taken to rinsing her in the sink, and then disinfecting it, rather than using commercial diaper wipes.  That savings is helping.  I will soon buy cloth diapers and pins for Emily, who  stays still nicely for changes.

In another effort to make ends meet, I have put together two storage boxes of nice clothes to take to a consignment shop, in hopes of acquiring what we need for fall and winter in the way of clothing. Last time I was at this shop, I saw a woman hand some of her own items over, only to trade them for additional ones, rather than exchanging money.

I'm about to leave on my errand, and I'm covering it in prayer.  Emily needs 3T sleepers right away, as our nights are getting cooler.  Her sleepers, and several pairs of jeans and a winter coat for my rugged Daniel, are the minimum requirements we have.  Luckily, the children's sweaters, found at thrift shops last year, still fit and look nice for church.

If you haven't tried the thrift store/consignment route, I highly recommend it!

Here goes!


Andrew & Terri said...

Have you considered using snappis for Anna's diapers? You can see how they work here: There wouldn't be a risk of sticking her that way. You could also use cloth wipes (made out of old worn-out sheets or clothes) to make your changes a little easier.

It sounds like you're doing a great job economizing. Keep up the good work!

Evenspor said...

With so many different kinds of cloth diapers out there these days, you may be able to avoid safety pins. One blogger I follow has been learning about and experimenting with different kinds of cloth diapers lately. She even recently mentioned a website called for saving money. If you have time, you might want to head over and read her most recent posts (she hasn't posted much lately, and most of the stuff on the first page is about her learning about cloth diapers):

Carolyn said...

I love thrift stores. 15 or 20 years ago I probably wouldn't have been caught dead in one and now they're my best friends. I get the most compliments on my thrift store clothes, probably because they are nicer and better made than the WalMart ones. By the way, Brian has a saying from the depression era that he puts at the top of our budget page on the computer. It says "Use it up, thin it out, make it last, or do without." I'm pretty good at the first three. Its the last one that trips me up. Waiting for God to provide it is difficult. I so often will just take matters into my own hands rather than waiting for His provision.

AngelRhoden said...

Hi Pam,
Thrift stores-what a blessing! I truly believe it's a great way of being good stewards. I believe we can find so many blessings during struggles and it sounds like you're getting some of them! If we got everything our flesh could desire, we may never learn to rely on Him. Being blessed through the struggles here and praying you are too!