By: Diane O’Brian
I often wonder how bloggers who write about saving money came to be “one of those people.” I don’t know all of their stories, but I can tell you mine.
I grew up in a seemingly middle class family that probably really wasn’t. My mom was a stay at home mom until I got older, and my dad was in and out of work over the years due to layoffs and medical problems. I once asked my mom what her budget looked like and she responded, “Budget? What budget?” With three kids money went out as soon as it came in. So saving money was a necessity and a way of life for our family.
I have memories of my mom going off to “refunding club” where she’d share and collect receipts and UPC’s she needed to get rebates on a product. We cut out the UPC on every product we used “just in case.” My mom had a big box in the hall closed where she had envelopes of coupons for every type of product imaginable. One of our chores might be going through the envelopes and pulling the expired ones.
Interestingly enough, my sisters and I all took our own lessons from childhood and we did not all turn out to be frugal like my mom. I saw my parents struggle with money, and how hard they worked to still give us everything they thought we should have. Although I appreciate everything they did, I did not want to spend my life struggling to make ends meet. As a result, I am very careful with money and use all the tools at my disposal to save my hard-earned money.
Enter Mrs. Spock. She and I have been friends since Jr. High, and she also has her own story of saving money out of necessity. She has always been receptive to my thoughts on saving money, budgets, etc. and we learned from each other. (Thank goodness, because I think I was starting to bore everyone else to death on the subject.) Because two heads can be better than one, Mrs. Spock invited me to help share our knowledge and experience with anyone who might be interested through her blog.
I won’t claim to be half as good of a writer as Mrs. Spock, but hopefully my typos will be minor, and that I will offer a different perspective from my many years of experience with saving money.