Hello. I am in the process of rewriting my mission statement. Back when I started FrugalandFree.com I was actively couponing, buying in bulk, getting most things for free or very cheap…and had a coupon clipping service. All while working 40 hours a week in a call center. I used to shop 3-4 times a week, had 2 chest freezers full and an extra fridge with a wide variety of markdown dairy products and drinks. Whenever my husband and I met someone at work who was having a rough time, we would invite them over and let them “shop” out of the freezers and fridge…they usually left with about 3-4 bags of groceries, household items.
I LOVED doing that for people. It was my way of giving back for all that had been done for us in the past. But, that was about 4-5 years ago and a lot has changed. My husband and I have suffered many physical ailments and conditions and neither of us can work. Couple that with the economy taking a nosedive…well…let’s just say that things are A LOT different.
I want to be honest with my readers. I am restructuring a lot of things, Frugal and Free included. I cannot coupon as I once did. Most of my time has been spent of late on SURVIVING. Making it through the pain. Trusting God through it all, to show me the way. I have gotten back into my passion of baking as a release. (And, I must admit that I LOVE to make people happy with goodies I bake.) I love photography and try to impliment that into F & F along with the baking. And it all has a frugal theme. That is who I am.
Last summer, our home was in foreclosure. (Just for the record, we did NOT have an adjustable rate. We did NOT buy too much home-all we did in ’07 was buy our first home. Our first payment was greeted with a layoff for me. This has NOT been easy…but we keep plugging along.) Once my disability came through, we were able to apply for a loan mod-it ended up being an “in house” mod because we couldn’t qualify for the Making Homes Affordable program. Our interest rate was lowered from 7.25% to 5.625% which was GREAT, with the exception that the delinquent amount was tacked on the backend of the loan. So, our payments didn’t go down, they increased. We were just very glad to be able keep our home. (All along our street, houses were being foreclosed. Two in a row, then our home was next. But, through God’s Grace, ours was removed from foreclosure.) Many changes and circumstances, further loss of income. Y know whenever people are figuring your Debt-to-income ratio, the housing is supposed to be 31% of your income, right? Well, ours is 86%.
I am seeking help with a new program, a VERY SHORT DATED one (Must apply by July 22, 2011.) The Emergency Homeowner’s Loan Program. We have definately been affected, adversely, by loss of income due to medical conditions. I have placed this in God’s hands, all the while, doing whatever footwork is in front of me. The program is using a lottery system to choose who gets to apply. So, I have submitted a “pre-application packet” and now, all we can do is WAIT…and trust in the Lord.
Oh another way to be frugal: Cutting the fat wherever you can-Comcast was kind enough to give me a promo rate for 6 months on our Broadband Internet, saving us about $55 a month. You just need to ask. All they can say is No. My Mama taught me that. Don’t be afraid-just ask!
Well, that’s where we are at present. In the meanwhile, I still look for “deals” at the grocery store and online. I will be passing these things on to you, as I am able. Thanks for understanding.
“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”
— John Lennon
Until Next Time,