Stay Married. It’s Cheap.
This weekend was a Cheap-Affirming Extravaganza. My parents came out to Texas to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.
50 years is a long time to be married. Personally, I don’t know anyone else who has managed it. Let me think a minute……Nope. Mom and Dad have been married the longest of anyone I know.
Divorce is really common, and I guess it is the best solution sometimes, but MAN it is hard on the pocketbook. Of course, there may be some cases where it is not but I don’t know of any (I’m talking regular people here, not the .0000001%).
My parents have managed to do a lot in their 50 years of marriage on a relatively modest income: own a home in an expensive Los Angeles suburb, put 4 kids through private school, help pay for three weddings, retire early, pay cash for a car. The reason they were able to do these things is because they are frugal.
What this means specifically in relation to the above is: they don’t own the biggest home in the neighborhood (in fact, it’s probably the smallest!), we didn’t go to the fanciest school in town, our weddings were not circuses, they continue to live modestly in retirement, and they bought a 2 year-old Ford from Carmax. Some people (the one’s with the horrible credit card debt) might call this compromising. I call it smart.
My parents, obviously, are people who look at the long term. Sure, in 1976 it might have been tempting to redo the house in orange shag and purple Naugahyde. But where would this spending-spree have gotten them in 2012?
It was great spending their landmark weekend with them. It was a good reminder to me on how much one can accomplish, no matter what your circumstances. Of course, we had a good time on just a little dime.
I give my parents a lot of credit for the way they have conducted themselves financially. These are the kind of people you never hear about, because they don’t make a big stink about things. They just quietly go along, being self-sufficient and MATURE (that’s a biggie). They don’t blame other people for their misfortunes. They just get on with it.
I have a lot to learn from them. But luckily I’m young!