Sunday, February 12, 2017
LOVE YOUR LIFE
here's the story. When people ask me what is the secret to our happy marriage, I always answer, "Choose wisely.". But how could I not help but choose wisely when I had the Greatest Helper helping me make that choice? My other great (and this one truly is great) bit of advice on marriage comes directly from the Bible:
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
If you follow those guidelines, you marriage will be a happy one.
Love Your Life
OK, enough of the mushy stuff! As many of you may have surmised from reading this blog, I am a tad bit peculiar. If you think it's hard being thrifty and self-sufficient now days, you have no idea how much harder it was in the conspicuous consumption era of the early 80s. It was really hard to be a stay-at-home mom when society was telling you you were of no value unless you had a career. Phil Donahue, a popular talk show host back then, referred to us as "little Mary swinging on the garden gate", as if all we had to do was wait around all day for our husbands to get home from work. His wife, Marlo Thomas, touted "free to be you and me" but that only applied to those that wanted to work outside the home. And we had TV shows like Maud and All in the Family preaching the feminist agenda, it's nice to see young woman are finally able to make choices these days without all the backlash, life was hard back then!
But what I discovered from all that discouragement and belittling that went on, is that if you really want joy in your life, you just have to follow your heart and don't look back and second-guess your decisions. I'm still peculiar. Most people I come in contact with don't think like me. I still draw a lot of attention for the way I dress, even though most of it's complimentary, I'd really rather not have any attention at all, but it is an expression of who I am, and I refuse to wear what others are just to fit in. Those days are long gone. I only wish I had the courage to be the "real" me sooner. Unfortunately, I grew up in a very conformist era. My mother was always saying, "What will the neighbors think?" It was her mantra that she lived by, it guided her in everything in life; from the church she attended to the way she wore her hair. Now as I reflect on her life, I have such pity for her, how horrible it must have been to be so rigid and confined all her ninety plus years. Even on her deathbed, she was still concerned about what people were thinking of her.
And one more thing, I hate that expression "Bloom where you are planted". Sometimes no matter how hard you try, where you are at, just isn't where you need to be. I lived in two rather urban areas for two decades of my life, and even though I tried very hard to make the best of it, I never truly was happy there. It takes courage make a move from a comfortable life to where you need to be, but boy! is it worth it! To me, it was two decades of my life just surviving. Thank goodness longevity runs in my family, so I might get those two decades back. Ha! Don't live your life just-getting-by, imagine what you want your life to be and go out and get it.
I love to watch YouTube videos of fellow thrift, simple life, prepper types. Some of them are pure geniuses on how they figure out ways to make almost free energy. One gal I happened upon recently, said she never buys clothes. She lives in an urban area and people are always leaving their backpacks on benches and she takes them home and washes the clothes and wears them. Would I do that? Probably not. It would be pretty poor pickings in my neck of the woods, but why not if you were needy enough? I imagine if you lived in a more urbane upscale area, you might be able to find some pretty nice things. She looked well dressed, I never would have guessed. She also said she never buys garden gloves because she's always finding lost ones on her walk. It doesn't matter if they don't match for gardening. Now that certainly is something I could do around here.
We had a family friend that knew where the kids held their "parties" in the town we grew up in. He would go the next morning and pick up all the beer and pop bottles and return them for the deposits. He said he made around $20 a week that way. Back in the 70s when he did it, that was enough to buy a week's worth of groceries. Heck, you can still buy a week's worth of groceries for that amount if you know how to shop.
So this had me thinking all week, that I should keep my eyes more open while out for our walks. Sure enough! I found a nice heavy-duty tarp that had blown into the vacant field behind our house, several pop bottles, and nice 1/2" socket. And let's not forget the nice haul of free lumber that we found last Christmas. I'm enjoying my cozy mixed wood wall as I write this in front of a fire from tree fallen tree limbs and free pallets. To quote Dr. Seuss "Oh the places you'll go and the things you will see, if you keep one eye open!"
The local thrift store is starting to have their big winter sell-off. Everything was 75% off, so clothes were around $1.30. It was time for me to start hunting for more wool for my quilts. I found a garbage bag full for just over $8. Here's the quilt so far:
quilt, but this one will be nice and useful. I'm also cutting some squares to make smaller stadium blanket sized ones for Christmas presents. They are nice to have in the car just in case you have an emergency. I also have a nice selection of wooden and leather buttons from all those tweed blazers.
I also purchased several garments made from stretch velour to make some Garlands of Grace type headcoverings. They are simple enough to do, just cut out a six inch wide piece of fabric about 8 inches long. Hem the long sides then gather the short ends and sew ties to the end.
Thrifty Things We Did This Week
Made a huge batch of refried beans. Ate some and froze some. We bought a 20 lb. bag of pinto beans a while back for 30 cents/ lb. Lots of good meals have come from that bag!
Bought a garbage bag full of wool from the thrift store for $8.
Finished a pair of mittens for Christmas.
Sewed a velour headcovering from thrifted sale fabric.
Found a tarp, socket, firewood and returnable bottles on our walks.
Got a rebate check from Ebates from the curtains we bought in December.
Watched several movies on YouTube and a really interesting documentary on Nantucket and whaling for entertainment.
Bought $20 worth of groceries at the grocery outlet store. They didn't have as many great buys as they usually do, but it was still worth the trip.
Cooked and baked entirely from the pantry this week. Although I will have to buy come cheese soon.
Well that's it for this week at the old Zempel boarding house. I hope your Valentines Day will be filled with many hugs and great affection, and the other days of the week also! Here's one to get you started: