Disclaimer:  All information on this site is for informational purposes only.  Before using any alternative remedy, begin any new exercise routine or otherwise start trying any of the recipes included on these pages, check with your primary health provider.  Many herbs, foods, and exercises can conflict with medications you are taking or have unknown side effects.

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For Rural and City Living
Tips From The Depression

During the Great Depression of the 1930s many people were forced by circumstance to live on very little money.  During those days, nothing was wasted and many people learned to make do with what they had or do without.  Many of the ways that people of the depression era survived are seeing a comeback today due to hard economical times. 

Use It Up

This can apply to vehicles, clothing and household items. The idea is that instead of buying something new, you use the item you have until it is no longer functional.  Don't replace your stove just because a better looking model is on the market. Replace your stove when the stove no longer will cook your food. The same goes for clothing. Replace clothing when the clothes are actually worn out, not when the stores introduce the new seasons fashions.

Stretch the Food Budget

Food can take a large portion out of your paycheck. During the Depression, pasta and rice were eaten at most meals in order to give the illusion that there was plenty to eat. Both pasta and rice are filling and when combined with small amounts of meat and vegetables, no one will walk away from the table hungry.  When grocery shopping, look for store labels and bulk packaging to save money as many times you are paying more for the brand name and the package as you are for the food inside. Gardens for fresh fruits and vegetables were a necessity for most homes. Even living in an apartment today, you can still grow a number of vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers and lettuces, to cut your food costs drastically. If you have a hunter in your family, wild game can reduce your meat costs by hundreds of dollars a year.

Buy Used and Off Brands

Thrift shops, garage sales and auctions are places where you can purchase most everything you have to have at rock bottom prices. Often, clothing, kitchen appliances and other durable goods are in new or near new condition and cost a fraction of purchasing new. If you are looking at high dollar items, such as lawnmowers or other equipment, arrange to partner with a neighbor or family member who needs the same item. By splitting the cost, you will save money. While name brands are nice, off brands, or the stores own brand of the product will often be of the same quality for less cost.

Go Where the Jobs Are

While the days of the migrant farm worker may be over, many small communities are seeing plant closings and other work drying up. Larger cities may be the only areas where jobs are available. Packing up and moving may be a hard option, but is often the only option available to keep working and keep a steady income. Many companies offer the change to work at home, or telecommute, and if you can find a way to make this work for your family, it may be an opportunity to stay in the community you love.

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Kat and Kevin Yares

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