Friday, August 15, 2008

Screw you, Inflation!

This picture has nothing to do with inflation. I just thought it was cute. Okay, maybe nose inflation.
Inflation sucks. I realized this as the amount of money going out each month seems to get bigger and the amount coming in stays the same. Tim makes good money. I'm able to stay home with Stella and we live a comfortable lifestyle. But things get tighter and tighter each month and I'm always going why? Yes we occasionally spend too much at IKEA, but other than that, none of us have bought clothes in months. And we're not a tchokes family. Really all our "frivolous" expenses are dining out. Really, we're weak. We like to eat out and we get busy and Tim has to work late so he can't cook, etc.
I am writing this post while procrastinating what I really need to be doing: re-examine our budget and re-adjust how much we give to 401k. Plus get a definitive number on how much dining out we can do. Things are just getting too expensive. And no one is making any more money. I remember when we could get a week's worth of groceries for $85. Our last grocery bill was like $100 more than that! I'm sure there were a couple of big ticket items, and that does include breakfast, lunch and 5 dinners for 3 people, but it's a lot more than what we were paying a year or so ago.
How do people who make less than us do it? Tim cooks pretty gourmet, so they may have lower costs, but he's not cooking with caviar or anything. Gas isn't killing us because my car averages 28 mpg, but what about people who drive 16 mpg SUV's and make $52,000 a year (the median family income as of 2006 for a family of three for Texas)? How do they make it?
Well, Stella's awake so this examination of the disappearance of the American lifestyle we'll have to wait for another day.


Mary Beth said...

We were back for 7 weeks this summer and I was amazed at how expensive everything was. We are living in Shanghai and being in our "bubble" here has been nice.

yer mama said...

It seems really insane to me but we budget $800 a month for groceries. We are usually well under that but there have been those weeks where we have spent 200 bucks over the course of the week. I can get really good deals at Sun Harvest, they haven't raised their prices too much - yet. I highly recommend stocking up on your meats there. Their sales run wednesday to tuesday. Wednesday is "double ad" day which means items from the preceding week are on sale and items for the upcoming week are on sale too. I can get a weeks worth of healthy, fresh food (I don't cook from a box) for about $65 or less.

Jooley Ann said...

How do they make it?

Debt. Debt debt debt debt debt. Sad as it is.

We're feeling the pinch, too. Groceries are the biggest bite. And...damn! have to feed your family? I refuse to start buying what I consider to be crap (foods full of high fructose corn syrup, trans fats, hormones, you name it) for the sake of, what, $30/month? Maybe $50 if I *really* dug in and bought crap?

Sorry to rant, but I soooo know where you're coming from. It's frustrating!

But the nose photo is adorable, so there's that.

Caroline said...

I know the post was really about inflation, but the nose picture is so amazingly cute. You two are absolutely gorgeous!