Reflections

Frugal vs. poor {a penny for your thoughts}

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What does it mean to be frugal? And what does it mean to be poor? 

Although I think about these words often, and define them in my head, I realize I’ve not yet shared this on the blog.

In this post, I want to outline the definitions of the words “poor” and “frugal”, just as a starting point. Then I will share what these words mean to me and open the post up for discussion.

So if you have any thoughts or stories to share, please do so ☺

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Definitions

According to dictionary.com, a frugal person is one who is “economical in use or expenditure; prudently saving or sparing; not wasteful”.

A poor person, by contrast will have “little or no money, goods or other means of support”.

 

My thoughts on being poor

Poverty is a complicated issue. On the surface, it seems an easy fix. Work hard, get money and improve your standard of living.

Some people only have seasons of struggle. Some have a lifetime. There is no easy fix for that. But please understand that if you are in a difficult time in your life, there is hope and you can, you can move past it.

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I think the bottom line is that no one really wants to be poor and struggling, but it is possible to get out of it. Usually this takes some clear thinking, a good work ethic and help from others to accomplish.

 

My thoughts on being frugal

I think that most people would agree that people are not poor by choice. Some choices may lead to poverty, but people largely do not wish to place themselves in that uncomfortable place.

However, frugality is a choice. It is a way of life. It is essentially saying, “Hey, I make x, and I don’t want to spend all of x, so I will save where I can”.

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Frugal people, in my eyes are people who live as if they have less, so that they can have more in the future.

One way to save is to learn ways to slash your grocery budget. I’ve educated myself on this topic a bit and I enjoy passing on little bits of what I’ve learned to you guys.

((Are you up for a new series on saving money on groceries? I may have one in the works 😉😉))

So let me ask…what does being frugal mean to you? Does a certain picture come to mind? What does the word poverty mean to you? Where do you think the line is between poor and frugal? Would you consider yourself a frugal person? 

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Sewing & Repurposing

Whipstitch Wednesday: Making Bears for Carry the Future

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Today I finally, finally got to finishing some stuffed bears I had been planning on making for Carry the Future.

Last August, I was nominated for the Leibster award by Sharon, of the blog Leadership2Mommyship. In my post One Lovely Blog Award & Leibster Award I shared that I was totally in love with an organization called Carry the Future that gives aide and baby carriers to refugees, especially those in the Middle East.

They had a great need for certain items, and while I have slightly limited resources, I do like to sew. I saw that Carry the Future was partnering with Dolls of Hope, which made simple doll and bear patterns available for anyone interested.

(I decided on the bear pattern because it looked easier.)

Not too long ago, I actually downloaded the pattern, planned the project and then went to Wal-Mart to get my fabric.

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I bought a few flannel prints ⬆⬆⬆ for the front of the bears, and combined those with some Sesame Street fabric I already had and another flannel solid that was gifted to me.

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These ⬆⬆⬆ are the fabrics for the backs of the bears. There is a combination of minky, fleece, and plush fleece (the green).

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I probably started these in March and have just now finished 3. My goal is 12, but we’ll see 😄

These bears are fairly easy to do. And for anyone interested in making these, here are a few tips:

  • Minky is hard to work with because it likes to slide, but once it’s matched up correctly I found it easy to sew.
  • Using a peice of felt for the nose as the directions reccomend is the way to go.
  • You will use a lot of black embroidery thread. Buy lots.
  • 1 bag of stuffing will get you far. I’ve used enough for 3 bears and it looks like I’ve used hardly any.
  • Minky and plush fleece will shed everywhere, which you will probably notice when it is cut at the store. I found it helpful to use an old sheet spread under the fabric when I cut it and then cleaned up the mess with a lint roller.

 

I think I will get better at these bears as I go along but just wanted to share my progress for those interested.


 

Price breakdown:

Fabric– $15.61, for a 1/2 yard of 6 different fabrics (1.99-3.92 each).

Stuffing-$3.47, and more than likely way more than I need.

Blue thread-$1.45 (I always buy Gutterman).

Total: $20.53

It is very doable to make 10 or more bears for under $25, that’s in the ballpark of $2.50 or less per bear.


 

If you want to get started making these, you can find information and directions here:

https://www.carrythefuture.org/announcements/dolls-hope/

Does this look like something you are intersted in? Have you ever participated in a project like this? Let me know 😄😄

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Reflections

The Debilitating Nature of Depression {part 1 in a series of poems}

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Today I would like to open up and talk a little about a topic I don’t normally discuss here on the blog.

Mental illness.

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Because May is Mental Health Awareness month, I wanted to devote a few posts to the topic.

So many people have had good things to say and share about the topic. Here on WordPress, Facebook and other places on the world wide web.

I admire their courage. I admire their strength.

It takes courage to live with mental illness, but just about as much to share that you struggle with it.

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Today I would like to shed some light on the mental illness that is depression.

More specifically, I have sought to describe how depression can both make a person feel like time is standing still and yet going on forever. You can feel stuck. In life, in your day, in a moment.

If you are one of the many who struggle with depression, I hope that this poem can be an encouragement to you and a gentle reminder to get back to the you that you know.

Depression is a real struggle. There is hope. You are not alone.

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You Can’t Stay In Forever

You can’t stay in forever

If ever,

You know.

You can’t fight the pace

That’s slowing

You down.

Forever

Is never

a’ changin’.

And change

Oh change

Is

Good.

I crave forever

When I’m feeling

Down.

But forever

Is heavy.

Forever’s a trap.

Don’t let

“I’m never changing ever”

Spin you out of

Control.

 

Bring you back.

 

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This poem is my own.

All pictures are from pixabay. Photo 1 and 2 are my design.

Caturday, Reflections

Hold On To Love

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Stella is not a cuddler by nature. One of these days I’ll get a cute pic of her showing her loving side. But it is not this day.

Today Caturday is taking a more serious turn as I reflect about the atrocities committed against humanity in Las Vegas. I heard about it from the day it happened of course but it wasn’t until recently till I saw this picture and story that the reality of it all really sunk in.

http://tribunist.com/news/man-who-covered-woman-in-iconic-las-vegas-shooting-image-is-an-active-duty-u-s-army-soldier/?utm_source=GStyle

This is my country. This happened here. These are real people that lost their lives. I can’t point a finger. I can’t blame. I won’t give attention to the whims of a madman who deserves no mention. Yes, I had anger. But there was something else..

As I read that article, saw the picture of the army soldier tenderly sheltering that woman…I thought of Him.

Of how this must break God’s heart. Of the gentle love that He has for those who suffer. Who have been through fear and pain. He holds those people with tenderness. That is what I see when I looked at that picture.

And I thought of this verse.

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He holds us in His hands. He carries us in His heart. He has great love for humanity. Not only for His church, His bride but for us all. Every person who has ever walked this earth.

And I can’t get over the picture. Because not only do I see God’s tender love, I see His Son Jesus. So willing and ready to give up his life to save mine and yours. He took my place on that cross. He loves with an everlasting love.

This post has went much deeper than I originally planned but these words have been heavy on my heart. I know that talk of God and deep spiritual things is not what everyone desires. It’s ok. I understand. But my Lord is so much a part of my life that the light has got to have somewhere to shine. I thank-you for reading 🙂

So what can I do? You do? We do? We love. We go on. Hold those close whom you love. Even those whom to love is difficult. Trust me, I know. Be kind. Kinder than necessary.

Each one of us has a gift and a purpose on this earth. And I believe our highest calling as human beings is to love.

Love each other. Even when it’s hard. Even when that person drives you crazy. In some cases discernment and common sense is needed. We are not doormats. But love all the same.

And if all else fails, cuddle your kitty. Or puppy or (insert all other animals). Because pets just seem to understand.

Hold on to love.

~Rachel