Saving Our Savings

By Karen Norling

Eight months ago, my husband, Jim, lost his engineering job at GE Health care here in Ohio. In all those eight months –after dozens and dozens of resumes “snail-mailed” and emailed — not one company has called him for an interview. Not one company has called me for an interview either, despite the many positions I’ve applied for (I have a Master’s Degree in English). Perhaps you’re facing a similar situation, ensnared as all of us are in this seemingly-endless recession. If you are facing such a situation, read on.

Admittedly, Jim and I have a fair amount of savings in the bank. But here’s the problem: we loathe having to

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8 Responses to Saving Our Savings

  1. Leigh says:

    Thank you, Karen, for sharing your experiences with us. I certainly wish you the best in finding good employment soon.

    The take away for me is that these kinds of saving opportunities should not wait for a dire time in one’s life. If these simple steps were implemented in the good times, there would be a bigger nest egg to fall into.

  2. Sandy L says:

    Great Article. Last year I did a similar thing..Luckily we were still employed but were very nearly both laid off (40% of our teams were cut at the end of 2008).

    I also love gardening..and did buy plants. Last year, though I posted a “wanted” add on craiglist and also posted photos of some plants that I had an abundance of. As you know, it feels horrible to throw out extra perennials, so both parties were pleased to share their bounties. Oh and hydrangeas are very easy to root. Just take a cut branch and stick it in the ground. It will root quickly if you water it daily. So if you know someone who has one, just ask for a cutting.

    Don’t beat yourself up too much about not doing things sooner. Extreme budgeting is hard to do for the long haul and it’s also difficult without specific goals in mind.

  3. larabelle says:

    Thank-you for sharing. I hope you both find jobs soon or you may have to go deeper in your budget cuts.

  4. Jan says:

    What happens if neither of you find a position that is even close to the one that he lost? Has the actual reality hit? What if you need to move?
    I hope you find a position soon. It is a tough world out there for those over 50. Good luck!

  5. Allison says:

    I thought the article and suggestions were great. However, I am disappointed to see that you and your husband frequent the dollar menu at fast food restaurants several times a week. I would think eventually, eating habits like that would impede your health insurance savings.

  6. Dave says:

    Karen, how proud I am of you for the good article and the great courage you show in its content. As you know, I am not unemployed, but retirement is as difficult and requires the same careful, thoughtful considerations. I applaud you and bless you.

  7. Heather says:

    Great tips to share. I do wish you’d consider calling the companies that send you the catalogs to ask them to remove you from their mailing list instead of just chucking them. Save the paper and the future hassle in sorting your mail!

  8. Chris says:

    I admire all of the ways that you have been able to save! I have been unemployed for almost two years and have turned in to the most frugal person that i am almost ashamed of the way I have become. But when no money is coming in, you start to look at everything differently. Everything seems to represent a cost. When you start using paper towels more then once or you minimize the amount of toothpaste you put on your brush, you know that you are being frugal.

    I am confident, however, that some of the self employed ventures that I have undertaken over these two years will pay off!

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