Wow what a weekend.  Beautiful day, today was.  It's nice to have beautiful days in the middle of tough times.  At least we have our health AND the weather.

So how do you shift in times like this to deal with tough economic times?  I have noticed I do several things, such as:

  • We eat more chicken thighs.
  • I get cheaper haircuts.
  • Fewer dinners out.  This is easy since with a 9-month old, our days of eating out all the time are pretty much over.  We have people over instead to catch up with friends.
  • I feel EVEN better about skipping brunch.  I always hated waiting in line for $20 eggs I could have cooked better myself.  Now I feel like skipping spendy brunch is the "right" thing to do.
  • No taxis.  Unless I am going to the airport.
  • I closet shop rather than really shop. 
  • We do "not so secret Santa" Christmas giving.
  • I read the books on my shelves.
  • I read the paper online.
  • We eat more vegetables.  And beans.  And fruit.
  • Well, on the last point…mostly we eat more vegetables, etc. BUT, I cannot give up flavor.  So, I cook with more, you guessed it, BACON.  Bacon makes everything taste better.  And it's cheap.  Cheap, good, smoked meat flavor.  And sausage.  Italian sausage/kale/white beans all cooked down in some broth with onions and garlic, tossed with pasta.  You cannot go wrong.

Hmmmm.  Well, those all seem like pretty good things regardless of how challenging times might be.  Chicken thighs taste better than white meat anyway (just ask any real cook).  Dinner parties – way better than eating out (usually).  No subways?  I feel more green.  Books?  I have a lot of great unread books on my shelves.  Who needs to go buy something new?  And the vegetables, beans and fruit?  Last I checked, that was a big part of the formula for good nutrition.  So far, so good.

Cheaper haircuts are, however, a risk.  Hair matters.  I always feel like I am cheating when I don't see Patrick.  I love Patrick.  I will go back.  This is only temporary.  Besides, cheaper stylists always want to make me look like Dorothy Hamill or a TV commentator. 

So all in all, times might be tough, but many of these changes are good for me/us anyway.  OK, feeling good.  Feeling frugal.  Eating better.  Not wasting money on things I should not spend on regardless.