What luxuries do you have to share?

Friday, March 13, 2009 Hand-posted by Jennifer

What is a luxury in your household?  Is it your favorite soap or do you buy what you can with coupons(ding!)?  Is it your favorite brand of yogurt or again what you can buy with coupons(ding!)?  Or is it the luxury of watching your favorite television show or picking up the phone to call someone?  Or is it simply having enough groceries in your cupboard to feed your family without worrying how long it will last?  Those are the things that have resonated as luxuries with me and my immediate family this past year.

Seriously, I think about what some people consider luxuries compared to what I think of a luxury.  I have to say that the one luxury in my household is the internet yet that is debatable with me.  Access to the internet helps me to read my money saving blogs like Nickels-N-Dimes as well as print coupons to use at the grocery store.  So, I debate whether it is a luxury or a money-saving expense.  Could I save money without it?  Yes.  Would I save as much?  Maybe a little less but we would still manage.  So my internet is debatable.

What luxuries could your family do without?  What do you consider essential?

We have no home phone service.  Some people use MagicJack to get free local calls but it won’t work on our satellite internet.  And a lot of people use cell phones instead of home phones to save money but where I live cell phone service does NOT pick up except about 5% of the time because of the mountains and that's if you stand real still outside with your arm up in the air while standing on one foot.  OK, really, it's hard to get a signal.   

We have no cable/satellite service.  To some people letting cable/satellite go for just the basic channels is easy enough to do but because of where I live we don't even get the basic channels because of the mountains.  Does it bother us?  No.  We have our FREE Redbox Monday movies we watch each week or our FREE movies we can pickup at the library but even those are not high priority if we forget.

031309 Bare Cabinet Then I think about groceries.  How many people consider groceries a luxury?  Not many I bet but to some it is.  I know I use coupons now but a lot of people still don't. 

Do you know what a pantry looks like that isn't stockpiled with luxuries?  I do.  Do you know what it is like to be at a loved ones house and not be able to fill a grocery bag full of what you see sitting in the cabinet?  I do.

I won't even talk about what it feels like to debate on setting aside some gas money just in case your part time job actually calls you in for a few shifts or paying the past due part of the light bill that is more than two days beyond the disconnect notice date so they won't shut you off.  Those were some hard months.

Since I've started using coupons it has been a relief on our budget to provide for my family.  Being that I understand what it is like to scrimp by I still get what few extras at the store that I can and donate to others too because I've been in their shoes, I am still in their shoes.

I have experienced hard times and I still experience hard times but do you think about how many people are currently experiencing hard times?  Have you helped anyone recently?  Think about what luxuries you have and what you could donate.  I promise you will reap the heartfelt rewards just as much as the person receiving the donation!

5 comments:

  1. Tiffany said...

    I love this post!! The luxuries in this house are the cable/internet. But again the internet is debatable because I make a little money with it and print my coupons so it probably pays for itself.

    Every month we scrimp and save though. I've been down that road wondering if we'd get enough money before they shut off the power. Luckily coupons have helped me alot, I share with family and friends and sell some of the extra at the community yardsales. It may not sound very charitable but I sell at low low prices and the income helps pay a bill or 2 and keeps me staying home with my son.

  2. Anonymous said...

    Amen sister! It is so nice to bring in bags of items for our church's food pantry each week because of couponing! We have so much more in our pantries and freezer now than we did before, simply because we are able to get so much free with couponing. I'll send e-mails to friends about coupons and suggest that for the free items that they donate them if they cannot use the item. Thanks for this post! Thanks for also reminding us that things that we might not have considered to be luxuries really are.
    Gabe

  3. All Things Frugal 4-U And Me said...

    Come pick up your Sisterhood Award!

  4. Jen D. in SC said...

    I think this is a really beautiful and from the heart post.

  5. Coupon Mommie said...

    I don't think some people realize what a luxury really is until they have had to live a money poor life wondering if food was more important than paying a light bill.

    This was a very honest post without fluff. And I think in today's economic time we should all reread it and really ask ourselves what a luxury really is.

    And I cannot say enough about how it feels to live through a bad situation and get to the point where you are able to give back to others in need. Truly heart warming.

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