Happy Monday! ... I hope you all had a great weekend.

Some times life is like walking near a spider web (no... not like Gwen Stefani's song... although it is cool). You skirt the edges so as not to fall into the abyss. You get tangled up in endless "strings"... attachments that may or may not work for you... oh... and you can get eaten.

It's been a rough road since moving back to PA. We are glad we did it, for many reasons... not the least of which is being able to help take care of my mom. But ... the job market is precarious to say the least. We have survived on my income (just what I make selling art and such)... and we've cashed in everything we could as far as savings, insurance and investments. My hubby has worked a couple different jobs... both temporary... and continues to look. But in the meantime he is working hard on creating a dream... that of writing works of fiction. He has completed 2 short stories, and is working on a novel. Of course, that doesn't pay anything... at least not until (hopefully) he is published. So. We are as frugal as we can be with what we have... and are trying to unload as much of the things we don't need as possible until something more stable comes along.

It is not easy "living the dream..." as someone put it. 
But ... in the whole scheme of things... we couldn't be happier. We have a garden, which we love. We have a nice house in a very quiet neighborhood. I have a great pup... and even on days when I am sick... things are ok. Yes, things could be better, but they could most assuredly also be worse. No, we don't (and haven't) tapped into any government assistance type stuff. Why? For us, it just doesn't seem right. Be that right or wrong, it is what it is... and I certainly don't begrudge those who do. You have to do what sits comfortably in your soul. I did go to the local food bank a couple of times last fall... but after getting sick on the food twice, I figured that was a "sign" that I wasn't supposed to go there anymore. And so we buy meat in bigger quantities, and when on sale... so as to make it stretch farther. We cut our own hair most of the time. We don't buy much of anything brand new (except socks and underwear.... because... ew). We make as much as we can from stuff we already have. We consolidate trips so we don't use the car/ gas as much. We have an "Amish Style" lawnmower (ie: hand propelled push type with blades... no fuel required). We even don't buy things like toothpaste.. instead we use baking soda... which also doubles as a household cleaner, clothes stain cleaner, and baking ingredient). In fact, we don't buy cleaning products in general, and use vinegar and lemon juice and such instead. We recycle everything we can, burn the trash that is acceptable to burn, and have a healthy compost pile... which saves on garbage pick-up costs. We are (and have the past couple years) cutting firewood for this winter, to use in our fireplace to save a bit on heating. We are frequent flyers at our library, where we can get great books, magazines and movies on loan. We don't have TV, instead we rent movies from Netflix. We have a phone, but it's a dollar store type phone where you pay as you use.. and it has no "extras" to leech our time and money. At one time, I was on 13 medications for my lupus and such. I weaned myself off most of them, and now only use my inhalers for my COPD/Asthma, and I take a medication for chronic pain/ arthritis. We try to eat as healthy as possible, as a sort of "preventative medicine." Little things like this, often add up. Yes, we still eat out on occasion. Yes, we still spend on "luxury" items like wine, good bread, and such. 

In short, yes we live more simply... frugally... and perhaps in a "backwards" type of way than what
 some would think would be ideal... but so far, it is working for us. 
It probably wouldn't work for everyone.... and that is ok.
There are lots more things we could do... and perhaps that will happen in the future.. who knows.
Carry on... see you all tomorrow.


The photos for today's post is of a "Funnel Web" spider web (and the spider).
We often have several of these in the yard, and I think they are pretty cool.