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wendye said:
5. Money conscious (also in a good way, i.e. not in denial about student loans, credit cards, etc.)
I grew up poor, like landlord-banging-on-the-door-for-rent, school-lunch-or-nothing poor. I don't ever want to be like that again.

I don't think my family was at this level, but the consistent themes of my childhood included "money is tight" and "we're sacrificing everything for your education." In fact, when I told my parents that I joined the Mormon church, they responded that if they had known they would've sent me to public school instead of Catholic school.

My earliest money memory is when my dad didn't have legal authorization to work yet and he was doing odd jobs as a mechanic. One time he came home from doing a tune-up for someone and was paid $20. He immediately took me to Toys R Us and bought a Barbie model head for me, something I'd wanted for a long time. The lesson was to spend while you can, rather than save.

I'm a lot better at saving now (mainly because it's done automatically) but I still have a tendency to treat myself whenever I get a windfall. Or I spend in order to save - the last purchase like that was our small freezer, which resulted in higher initial costs since we started buying more food and higher energey consumption, but presumably will be more economical in the long term. Or I spend for a "good cause" like our emergency food storage. Working overseas exacerbates this tendency because I never know if I'll be back or if the item will still be there the next day. I love instant gratification and it's a struggle to tame it.
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On February 26th, 2009 06:20 pm (UTC), congogirl commented:
I've been living so long as a single person and moving around that I have a hard time keeping the fridge full but not having things go bad. When I put things in the freezer, it's like a black hole, I never take them out again. So grocery shopping is really hard for me because I do like to stock up, only I can never possibly consume all that stuff. And Kinshasa is SO expensive at the grocery that I really try to pare it back. Then I end up with my current situation, juice, bread, mustard, mayo, oil, maybe some pasta, but nothing that can actually make a meal!
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On February 26th, 2009 07:51 pm (UTC), ticklethepear replied:
Best bet is probably just to have a full pantry and buy the fresh stuff as needed....

I use these too:
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