Monday, April 24, 2017

Making Money Last

Library of Congress:  Flower Vendor's Easter Display, early 1900's. New York

I was in the hardware store the other day. They had an entire floor devoted to decorative gardening accessories, patio furniture and pretty benches.  There were swimming pools and barbeque sets.  It was so much fun just looking at everything.  I saw the sweetest little garden turtle.  It was a decorative item for the outdoors.  It had the happiest, cutest face painted on.  I thought my grandchildren would love it.  But the cost was $28.  So I just stared at it for a bit and then moved on. 

Over the weekend, I was in the drugstore picking up a prescription for my husband.  I love to browse around while I wait. They always have such nice seasonal items.  I noticed they had a similar turtle as what I saw last week.  This one was a bit smaller, but just as charming.  It cost only $5.  I was delighted and happily paid for it.  I plan to put it in the front garden this coming week.  I know the grandbabies will love to see it as we tour the grounds on our regular walks this season.

Buying things on impulse can be such a dangerous thing.  Our money can disappear so quickly if we are not careful.  But occasionally buying something inexpensive that makes us smile can be pleasant.

This winter, I took all my saved coins and gave them to one of my grown daughters.   It used to be easy to save for a rainy day by filling up jars full of coins. But now the bank won't accept the rolled money. Instead, they direct people to a machine in their lobby. This machine counts all the change and prints out a slip so you can get dollar bills at one of the teller stalls.  But the machine deducts a certain amount as a fee.  I just cannot fathom paying this. It is such a waste, even if the charge seems small.  So I have been keeping a change purse with me.  Whenever I do any shopping these days, I count out the exact change.   It takes a few extra minutes, but I no longer have to worry about what to do with a jar full of money that is difficult to spend. The days of saving change for a rainy day seem to be out of fashion.

Since we homemakers do a great deal of the spending in a household, it is important that we find ways to make the money last.   Each week, I have been taking my receipts and recording my spending in a journal book.  This is for groceries and gas and also any bills I have paid.  I want to remember where the money went.  This helps me be more careful. I also enjoy remembering some of our adventures by reading old entries.  The day I bought the garden turtle and wrote it in the book will make me smile.

Dressing up to do errands or to go shopping was common in earlier days.  My mother always did this. She would put aside her housedress and put on something nicer before going out.  Rushing out the door all the time to get things we forgot, or to hurry some errand can cause us to be wasteful.  Often we will be in such a rush that we buy what is convenient or quick.  This will waste money.   Finances are a serious matter. We need funds for food, housing and clothing. These are basic needs.  But we should treat that money with a great deal of care and planning.  I always dress up a bit before going out because I am more careful in what I do.  Dressing up a little is part of being prudent.  It is part of being cautious and precise in such an important job as spending the household funds to care for the family.

Impulse buying should be so rare that we are thrilled when we actually spend a bit of money that was not planned.  This will make us very grateful for the little treats we have in life.

Making money last just means we don't easily part with it.  We are slow and careful with our spending decisions. We keep our bills and expenses low so we can have money in a savings account.  This is being a wise steward with what we have been entrusted with.  It also brings great peace and happiness to make that money last as long as possible.

Mrs. White

From the Archives -

The Example of D.L. Moody's mother - Poverty in the 1800's.

My first Mother's day garden - Attempting a Garden.

Calling the Family Home - Mother's Dinner Bell.

Mrs. White's special book for Homemakers - "Mother's Book of Home Economics."

An Invitation - Subscribe to The Legacy of Home and have it delivered directly to your email. 



Lana said...

I have a garden turtle that the grandchildren love. They move it here and there and after they go home I sometimes have to look for it. That is a happy thing for me.

Christianlady68 said...

I love your posts and read them all. I look forward to each one and seldom comment. Today I would like to share. With Mother's Day coming up, I'd like to share. I always make my 3 grown daughters gifts for Mother's Day. This year it will be crocheted dishcloths and potholders for their kitchens. I want them to enjoy old timey things of life, too. I always use coupons and watch for sales on the yarn to save money, as well. We live very simply because we have to and we like it that way, too. God is so good. My health isn't the best, but crocheting is something I can still do when I am resting.

Rebecca Knox said...

An excellent article! I'm surprised and saddened to hear that your bank no longer accepts rolled change though. I guess we are fortunate. Our bank is small and area owned and still accepts rolled change. Just a couple of weeks ago I cashed in three years of rolled savings to pay for a mini vacation that my husband and I had planning for a while. From now on I will think of you every time I roll a roll of coins and use it as a point of contact to pray over you and your family. God bless you, Mrs. White! You are such a blessing to us!

Laura Lane said...

Good morning Mrs. White! It was a joy to find your post in my inbox today. I hope you've been enjoying springtime, or has it arrived for you yet? We have finally got some sunshine after a week of rainy weather.

I like to look at things, too. I used to long for them, but I don't so much anymore. Partly age, partly financial carefulness, partly a house that I'm still trying to declutter.

Enjoy your week!
Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

Unknown said...

I couldn't agree more Mrs. White! I bet the turtle is adorable. It seems we truly appreciate those little things when we live our lives this way!!

Sharon said...

As always I was blessed by your topic.We know the struggles of making money streach.God will bless you if you just trust him.Have a blessed day.

Anonymous said...

I hope you're enjoying your cheerful little turtle! We have a large yard, though not as big as yours. I love to add little pops of color and whimsy that one might not be expecting. We had a peach tree die several years ago and left a sad spot outside my kitchen window. A foot tall stump surrounded by bricks. Hmph. I put out the words to my friend that I was looking for an old wood salad bowl (very popular wedding gift in the late 80's). And one surprised me with it. I painted the dead trunk orange, the bowl orange, and then put large white polka dots on it. I nailed it bowl down on the trunk and made a mushroom! I added a small shepherd's hook from another part of the yard (trash picked) with a little birdhouse chime, put my gnome (a gift) there, and turned an old box fanblade into a large daisy by painting it and attaching it to a stake. Now I have this silly little scene outside my window that always makes me smile. It cost me nothing, but if I see a little buddy for my gnome, I might make a tiny splurge!

Debby in KS

Deborah Montgomery said...

I just took a whole bunch of rolled coins to our bank. It's too bad your bank doesn't accept them. I wouldn't use one of those machines either!

Anonymous said...

Our walmart has self check-outs and you can pay with cash. Occasionally I take my bag of coins along -- it takes a little time to feed them all in there, but no fee! Ta-da!

Anonymous said...

I'm reading the Martha years (Wiley) and I love the scenes describing how Mother kept a handwritten household accounts book. :-)

--G. A.