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Cash, Check, or Charge???

August 6th, 2011 at 03:08 pm

Remember when retailers would ask you, cash, check, or charge?

For awhile around here, checks were considered lethal. A lot of places wouldn't consider taking them because they had been burnt with folks writing bad ones. I guess with technology, many are more comfortable because the money can be taken out almost immediately. Which is a good thing for retailers.

My husband has always paid cash for things. It was an issue when we married 21 years ago because he didn't have a credit rating. It made getting a home loan a challenge and we paid a larger interest rate since he had no credit rating although I had a good one. He didn't have a checking account and hated writing checks. He's not thrilled with it now, but since he's retired and does a lot of the shopping, he does write a few more. He did not have a credit card and when we married, I added him to one of mine. He rarely used it, but he's getting a little more comfortable now.

But, that's not to say he or we are spending like fools. If we charge something, it's for the convenience of using the card and then we pay it off when the bill comes.

Since the US' credit rating has been downgraded, lots of business folks are on news programs talking about what it means. One gal said "Cash is king." I know that mantra has been said by many in the past couple of years.

In my own simple thinking, until people realize that they can't buy things if they don't have the cash on hand, our economy is going to struggle. The whole housing fiasco where banks gave loans to folks who really couldn't afford home and no interest and no down payments...why would they think they are responsible for paying if it was so easy?

I know the economic woes extend to more things that being a big issue. But, until many folks live within their means and have the cash to cover the checks and charges, we will continue to have problems and we all pay for it in the long run.

Chicken and blessings

May 8th, 2010 at 01:07 am

"A chicken in every pot!" was the campaign promise of Herbert Hoover when the depression was going on in the 30's. It's actually the 21st century, but I have a chicken in a pot, a Crock pot, that is!

It's Friday night and it just doesn't seem like home not to have a chicken being warmed and "loved" by that slow cooker wrapped in some vegetables to make a savory broth.

My husband said I get my money's worth out of that chicken. I make a few dishes ahead for the week with the chicken and the broth and add vegetables, pasta, or rice.

Unfortunately Hoover was a victim of his times -- the economy didn't turn around and many people didn't have a chicken in their cooking pots. My dad said he hated grape jelly because someone gave his mom a bunch of grapes and she made grape jelly and many nights that's what they had for dinner -- grape jelly sandwiches.

I don't think his family was alone. And I think during the current recession, there are families who are struggling to feed themselves. I know we are blessed to have enough and I can choose to cook chicken on Fridays to make all sorts of dishes for the coming week. At one of my schools, it is very high poverty, and the children seem hungry most of the time. I've baked bread with them as a way to show them that bread just doesn't appear at the store and also gives them some experience in measuring. They inhale the bread and butter when it baked. We made "Stone Soup" one time and not many of them turned up their noses at all the vegetables in the soup -- two huge Crockpots full and homemade bread besides - it disappeared within minutes. I had kids ask about the recipe and when I explained it was basically using some canned goods and broth, they all thought they might be able to help their mom or grandma make some!

I hope that if you are also blessed with enough food, that you will consider putting some nonperishable items by the mailbox tomorrow (Saturday) for the National Mailcarriers food drive. I know you will be aiding families who need a little help. God bless you!