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If You Can't Afford to Pay for it with Real Money...You Have No Business Getting it Done!

Cox_Park3[1] I wasn’t really trying to listen in on their conversation… but after a while it became hard to not listen to what they were saying.  Yes, the economic downturn has affected Orange County, CA in a major way.  I don’t know anyone whose family hasn’t been touched in some way, either by a layoff, a pay reduction or some other reduction in financial security.   It’s the topic on everyone’s minds these days so it’s not unusual to hear women talking about their home being foreclosed on while their kids play at the park or sip on a coffee at Starbucks.  It’s just reality around here and not just fodder for The Real Housewives of Orange County!

As I sat there pretending to be immersed in emails on my iPhone, I overheard one of the women mentioning that they didn’t have the money to pay the movers the remaining balance to get their furniture out of storage.  I heard her say over and over again how hard the past few months had been.  I couldn’t help but notice her perfectly manicured acrylic nails, salon perfect hair and obvious cosmetic surgery she’d had and wonder whether it was “real” money spent on those items or just paid for with equity lines and credit cards.  Don’t misunderstand me… I have absolutely nothing against those things.  My beef is with spending fake money for it.  If you can’t afford to pay for it with real money… you have no business getting it done!   If you can’t afford to pay a couple thousand dollars to get your furniture out of storage how can you rationalize manicures, expensive hairstylists and a shopping budget that would feed a small village?

I’d had enough of listening to their conversation, my stomach was turning and I couldn't bite my tongue any harder without needing to make a visit to the emergency room.  I called my boys and told them it was time to head home, because we had a few errands to run before dinner.  As I sat in the car getting the boys situated in their seats, I turned around just in time to see the very same woman get in to her brand new completely flipped out Escalade.

Sure, I guess in some people’s books a shiny expensive car (with an equally shiny lease payment) is more important than keeping food on the table.  Oh yeah, that’s still in storage.  Oops, I mean than keeping the take-out dinners constant.

My hat is off to those who are navigating tough times with grace and humility, yet are still finding ways to keep the lives of our children unaware of the turmoil.

How are you trying to teach your children ways to be wise with money during these tough economic times?

Catch more posts by Katie over at OCMomActivities where you can read Mom-isms, enter cool giveaways, learn cost saving shortcuts to being a mom and find out about fun activities in and around Orange County, CA. You can also follow Katie on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook


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