Getting every drop out

July 12th, 2011

Business has been both great and challenging at the same time. Working harder than ever before, but sometimes it still seems like we can’t make enough money to pay everyone what they should be. My clients would, I think, be shocked at how little I make (and what I manage to live on!) Or maybe they see me driving the one car with the missing foglight and the cracked lower trim, (the ‘good’ car) or maybe even the rusty Explorer with no a/c! And they wonder about me that way, too. Either way, we live simply, and we over give, waaaay over give to our clients. I like to think it’s karma, that it comes back to me. It hasn’t always. I’ve gotten seriously burned a bunch of times. We’re getting better, more efficient at work, better at time tracking, and I am able to lower prices for some, and price things at value for others.

Still, it helps to be frugal.  We wash out plastic bags (within reason, not the ones the family pack of thigh and drumsticks were separated into). We buy cheaper cuts of meat (hence the thigh and drumsticks –man you can get a giant pack of those for $5!) or we eat more beans. I’m not making it out like we’re starving. We buy organic produce and almond milk as well. But we have to economize. I’m not sure how it all shakes up – the cheaper chicken and the organic produce, but I hope it does anyway. I have an espresso maker. So you know life’s not poor over here. Just lean.

I guess I look at this way, we get every drop out of life. My father in law is a child of the depression. They save EVERYTHING. Nails, screws, a part you don’t know what it was for and probably don’t have it anyway – I do mean everything. They wear their clothes for years and years and years. (I swear they’re still wearing things they wore when we married 20 years ago). My mom saves everything. So even if it’s worn out, she’ll save it. I get my DIY upcycling from her, literally. My handbag design business is built around formal dresses 40 years old that she saved. Maybe almost 50 now.

So we come from these frugal parents, and we can’t help but want to do the same. We try to buy good quality so it lasts, and it helps that I am a fairly classic dresser. Modern classics, I would describe myself as wearing. Our daughter, now 4, always asks “mama can you make me some?” rather than “can we buy….”

i love that. Of course we can make that. We can make anything.


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