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Old 05-20-2009, 04:41 PM
 
1,059 posts, read 1,635,625 times
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I think there's a misunderstanding on what the word frugality actually means. It's not about being a cheapstake, it's about loving and respecting yourself, your family and the Earth. It's no wonder people get upset: how many North Americans actually consider themselves frugal?? If we were the majority, we wouldn't be in this housing mess. So we are not the norm by any stretch of the imagination. Love does not equal money. Why is there such a competition for gifts?? We give things we think are nice and people will like, but they are bargains.

And at some point, we shouldn't expect birthday gifts from our siblings. I mean it gets ridiculous. Save for an 8-month emergency fund, retirement, your kids' college and make sure you keep your job, then live below your means to insure that you are safe and sound. It's a no brainer.
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Old 05-20-2009, 05:01 PM
 
Location: Boca Raton, FL
4,851 posts, read 8,318,483 times
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Smile Two viewpoints and I'm in the middle

OK, I have been around both types. Personally, I never question anyone's spending habits but I have been around those who are frugal. Sometimes, it makes the other person feel badly and I'm not talking about large sums here.

My in-laws seriously have the first nickel they ever made. My poor MIL worked so hard, scrimped and saved, she really did not get to enjoy life. Then, I entered their lives. My husband and I would pay for items (lunches, dinners, just nice times together). At Christmas, I would go to Lord & Taylor and buy her some dresses. She always looked so nice and was a perfect size 10 (she was 5'11"). She is now gone and I was going through her things and I found notes to people indicating she loved what we (I) had done for her. I miss her. They had one child.

My in-laws had very few friends and lived an extremely quiet life. My parents on the other hand, were fun, active people who had a lot of friends and yes, my dad never met a business deal he didn't like. My parents had children and have 12 grandchildren, always surrounded by family and dearly loved.

We tell our kids - there is a happy medium - MODERATION. Don't go overboard but you want and need something, go buy it, quit complaining and don't subject your life on others.

One of my sisters is awful when it comes to money but she has to be. If you are talking (normal convo), it is always "How much did it cost" "How much was that?" Now, if asked that, I'd be told off. So, I just try to be vague and change the subject.
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Old 05-20-2009, 05:08 PM
 
Location: Boca Raton, FL
4,851 posts, read 8,318,483 times
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Smile Sibling gifts

I know each family is different but my personal view is that I like and enjoy giving my sibs a gift card, a day at a spa (maybe all together) and I hope I never have to stop.

If my dad were still around, every birthday, anniversary, holiday, we all got together somewhere. Maybe that's why all of their children and grandchildren (except for 1) live with 15 minutes of each other. Those are family ties you don't see a lot today and if this is what does it, then I'm all for it.

I love my sibs and am grateful for each and every one and all their children too!

On the other hand, I don't expect a gift from them but I like it!! Especially if they want to do something with me.
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Old 05-25-2009, 03:50 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR.
493 posts, read 494,861 times
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Friends and family are always going to be in your face in more or less extremes trying to tell you what you should and shouldn't do with your money. It's merely an extension of people's vanities that supposes that they, in fact, have the inside track on what is appropriate behaivior in all matters financial. A buddy of mine thinks I'm just not with it for not wanting to purchase a condo or whatever right now, and I think he was out to lunch for buying a Harley.

It just comes down to people's insecurities demanding affirmation from the outside that the choices they make are "okay".
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Old 05-25-2009, 07:25 PM
 
14,253 posts, read 14,736,031 times
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I'm not sure if frugal is the right word but my wife and I have always lived well within our means. Neither of us grew up in a well-off family and our parents, who lived through the 1930s, admire our approach and the fact that we have both been successful.

Various siblings like it too as we have had to bail several of them out in the past.
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Old 05-26-2009, 05:58 PM
 
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If you want to avoid saying "I can't afford..." and don't want to sound cheap you can try using the words "Yeah, but I'd rather SPEND my money on this instead of that and so that's what I'm going to do."

At least you're saying that you're willing to spend - that is, on your terms. After all, it's your money and nobody should judge or command you. Besides, it's a nice way to back out and close the book on the subject already.
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Old 05-27-2009, 12:38 PM
 
Location: La lune et les étoiles
17,413 posts, read 18,272,289 times
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I am SO TIRRRRED of people who try to peer pressure others into spending money unnecessarily. As if its not normal to try to build up your savings and investment and not simply live for the moment, constantly.

I take pride in living within (and in some cases underneath) my means. I didn't spend every dollar that I earned and then some. I didn't max out my credit cards buying iPods and HD flat screens. And while I do not deprive myself of the things that I truly want, I am smart about how I acquire them. I own a Mercedes but purchased it used. I have great clothes and shoes but I never, EVER pay full price, EVER.

A major part of our problem during this recession is that the majority had NO SAVINGS what so ever to fall back on. So many people gave in to each and every materialistic desire they had to acquire as many "toys" as they possibly could (on credit) in order to impress people that they don't even like.

Forget the Swine Flu, America's spending habits are the country's main epidemic.
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Old 05-27-2009, 04:46 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
19,879 posts, read 36,379,125 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon26pdx View Post
It just comes down to people's insecurities demanding affirmation from the outside that the choices they make are "okay".
This. Right here. This is the case in so many of the discussion here, and in real life. Whether it's demanding affirmation of spending money or of NOT spending money, that's what seems to be at the root of most of it. Otherwise, we'd not care what others thought of how we chose to spend our money OR how they choose to spend theirs.
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