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01 April 2012

Coffee Talk With Moíra - April 1, 2012

Broads On A Budget

With all the negative prattle about the economy dancing across our television sets during the six o'clock nightly news, money, finances, and the household budget are subjects sure to crop up.  We've felt the pinch in our household.  My husband is an RN, and with the Medicare cutbacks, hospitals and nursing homes are cutting expenses.  Those expenses are cut in wages (lack of raises for two years running), benefits (our cost doubled while coverage was halved), and overtime.

Add in the latest kick in the pants with rising gas prices, and you've got a household budget emergency broadcast.  'Attention homemakers, the price of meat has doubled, so your grocery budget is a joke.  Your gas tank has consumed its weekly quota of cash from running errands, and the kids are whining to go to an overpriced movie.  Mutiny is imminent.  This has been a test.  If an actual emergency had been...'  Uh, yeah.  You get it. 

  What's a Broad to do?  Mina and I have been talking (Oh!  The talking.  My husband claims that we know just enough to be dangerous - ha!)  Anyhoo, we're rather attached to reading scads of books a month, chatting endlessly on the phone, decorating our homes and yards, and trying new recipes on a whim.  Pretty basic pleasures of life, but under threat with the current economic situation.  I jest, but many people are losing their jobs.  It's disconcerting. 

The Broads are going Frugal!  Now to any who knew Mina and I way back when this will not come as a surprise.  We used to play 'Little House On The Prairie' when we were girls, pretending that we had a farm - complete with animals and a butter churn.  No kidding.  (Ah, the 'good-ole'-days' when my most pressing concern was whether I'd missed 'Please Don't Eat The Daisies', or whether I'd be caught riding my bike across 'The Hill')  No.  Mina and I have always had an affinity for things au-naturel, homemade, earthy - if you will.

So, we'll still be featuring new recipes in 'Braised Broads' and 'Broads On The Bake', but we'll be adding in more ideas of how to be creative with inexpensive ingredients. We'll also be looking for ways to save money around the house.  Mina, for example makes her own laundry soap - so does Kelley.  I cut my boys' hair.  Kelley is a coupon-ing whiz.

Being I love books, I'll link up to Maria Zaninni's book,  The Frugal Way: Smart Budgets For Busy People.  It's filled with the basics.  If you're already a frugal Broad, share your favorite ways to stretch your dollars!   

 - Moíra ♣

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