Monday, February 2, 2009

The Lousy Economy

Has the lousy economy effected you? To what extent? I hadn't been paying too much attention, but recently things have begun to get my notice and I am making some changes. I'm lucky in many respects. I am employed and receiving a steady paycheck even though I am out on workman's compensation for the time being. I'm also lucky that my union ensures I keep getting paid my full amount-there's no lag time and I'm still getting direct deposit from my employer-not the state. However, the pay's a small bit less as I don't get my pre-shift briefing overtime. That 15 minutes a workday really adds up. My retirement and deferred compensation have taken a hit, but, again, I'm lucky. I don't need those funds for a long, long while. Unfortunately, retirement is a long way away, but that gives the economy plenty of time to turn around. My folks aren't so lucky. As with all the people on retirement incomes, they will actually be receiving less money each month. A good deal less.

So what am I doing? It's more what I'm not doing. Mercifully, gas prices have gone way down (although I've noticed they're on the rise again), but I still limit my driving. Since I'm not going to work there are days I don't even leave the house...and don't drive the car. I don't buy books. I feel bad as I'm not supporting the authors, but I don't even take advantage of good deals. Thank God we have a great library system here. I still buy crafting supplies, but not as much, or as often...even with coupons at the big box stores. Unfortunately, lots of people are doing the same. I got an e-mail last night reinforcing the truth of this painful economy. My local paper store is closing: reason-the economy. People simply aren't buying so she can't get money to buy product and with less product less sales. For those that may remember, this store was about to close during last summer with gas prices soaring and rent being raised. A last minute investor saved the store that time-but not now. I'll miss the store, not so much for the product it offered, but the people, the groups, and the closeness-less than 10 minutes on a back road. I'm lucky in that there is another independent paper store that I really like, but it's across town and just not as convenient. Perhaps that's better as I'll stay home and not buy crafting goodies.

One store you can't stay out of is the grocery store. I went there today, without a list, but, on a full stomach. I noticed changes in myself. I put back the triple cream brie and didn't buy the fancy bread. (I did get a wild garlic Havarti and a salsa jack cheese, hey, can't give up everything! And cheese is good for you.) I saw the cutest plush chicken...and I put her back. I will only buy pop in 2 litre bottles-and only for $1 or less. It was finally on sale, but at 3 for $3.33. That's more than $1 each. No deal. I saw a new chip and some other things I'd like. But they weren't on sale, or still too expensive - no deal.

In closing, the lousy economy is effecting me and those around me. I can only hope that things will turn around...and turn around quickly.

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