Grandma Didn’t Live This Way

When I was growing up and went to visit my Grandma she always had some dough left over from her pie baking.  She would save it for me so I could play with it.  It was just dough, but as a small child I enjoyed playing with it.  I would squish it, stretch it, roll it into a ball, and do any other fun things I could think of.  It was fun, simple and most of all cheap entertainment.

My grandma would bake apple pies all the time.  I can’t remember her ever not having an apple pie on the counter.  The apples came from the trees in her back yard.  She made the crust herself.  As a kid I never remember my Grandma buying an apple pie.

What Happened?

Now many, many years later, I am an adult, and I have never made an apple pie.  If I want one I buy it at the store.  In just two generations look what has happened, going from homemade to store bought.  I guarantee the cost I pay at the store is nowhere near what it cost my grandma to make her own, even with the value of the dollar factored in between then and now.

Most of our grandparents lived debt free.  If they wanted something they made it, be it baked goods, cloths, even some tools.  If they couldn’t make it they saved for it.  Never would they consider putting something on credit.  Credit was an embarrassment, admitting you didn’t have money and people were to proud to admit that.  Nobody wanted to be known for not having enough money it was embarrassing.


Now days it is almost the opposite, people wear debt like it is a badge of honor.  I went into Home Depot the other day and at check out presented the cashier with CASH.  She looked at me puzzled and literally replied, “You’re paying with cash?”  I smiled and said “Yes, Is that a problem?”  She replied by saying, “Oh, no problem, it is just unusual for such a large purchase”  Now, let me say, my large purchase was a whopping $73.54.

The concept of paying cash has become scarce.  To the point that a clerk looked at me almost as if she didn’t know what to do with the cash I was giving her.

Spoiled Society

How have things gotten so messed up in just two generations?  How have we gone from a society that worked hard for what they had, paid cash and had no debt and yet so very proud of their small modest living conditions to a society of spoiled ungrateful in debt brats?  Now days so many people are not satisfied with what they have, always wanting more, and willing to be and proud to admit they are in debt to have all this great meaningless stuff.

Stuff is nice to have, but it is amazing to me how much more I appreciate what I have when I have to work hard and pay cash for it.  When I purchased my home I put a lot of my own sweat equity into it by doing a lot of the repairs and remodeling myself.  I paid for EVERY thing I did with cash.  If I couldn’t pay cash, I didn’t get it.  The house had 25 year old window treatments and I had to borrow an old drape from my mother for the sliding glass door.  The old window treatments were ugly! They hung there for over a year until I saved up the cash for new blinds.  Blinds that I paid cash for and installed myself.  If I had not waited and got them as soon as I moved in, charged them because I couldn’t stand the ugly windows treatment that were there, each time I looked at those blinds all I would have seen a monthly payment to someone else.  Instead I appreciate those blinds and when I look at them I see an accomplishment.

Appreciation Is In Hard Work

Waiting is good.  Living like grandma is good.  Being debt free is fantastic.  Isn’t that worth more than getting all you want now and then resenting it months and years to follow as you pay on the debt you built up?

Grandma knew what she was doing.  Work hard for want you want, save for what you want and you will appreciate what you have so much more.