May 07, 2008 I figured there's no better Mother's Day column than sharing some of my mother's wisdom.
All of this doom and gloom over the economy made her grab a pen and start jotting down her thoughts about 'roughing' it through the down times. She does have some experience...
Her early years were defined by World War II in the Netherlands. Meat was considered a treat, potatoes a complete meal and fruit an unheard of extravagance. Her memories consist of Nazi soldiers confiscating the family's hogs and Allied planes dropping relief packages.
So, my mom says "lean times=learning times." She's got every subject covered.
Save on energy: Summer is here! Get yourself a clothesline and hang your clothes outdoors.
Save on food: Grocery stores have sales every week. Learn to plan your menu around those bargains! When ground beef is on sale, make a big batch of chili. Pork loin is another good investment.
Homemade is best: Some years ago we made our own baby wipes. Save the store-bought container and combine a roll of paper towels cut into four squares, two tablespoons of baby oil, two tablespoons of baby wash and two cups of water.
How about the cup of coffee you stop to buy everyday? Do you know you can make 50-60 cups from a one pound can?
Special or everyday?: Soda used to be served for special occasions. Water or milk benefits the teeth, meaning fewer trips to the dentist which saves the pocketbook as well!
Having to endure some of her penny pinching exercises as a kid made for lots of eye-rolling. Today, I subscribe to most of them myself (coupons are the best!) and despite the ribbing, get a great deal of satisfaction from it. It's a matter of stewardship and responsibility that I'm grateful to have learned from her and the other women in my family.
Here's to moms who teach us, in their unique ways, how to survive what life throws at us.