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Months ago, I had this great idea that we (me and my family) could have less and end up with more.  I had a name – “The Year of Austere” – and a loose idea of a concept – cutting back – but lacked the necessary balls to float the idea to my family.  Cutting out Starbucks and video games and over-consumerism, not to mention our rampant eating-out, didn’t seem remotely do-able.  Eventually, however, I grew a pair and told my family about my tiny spark of an idea and they had way more questions than I had answers.  My husband, Glenn, and daughter, Chloe, bought into the concept relatively quickly.  My son, Nicholas, took alot of convincing. We even had a few tears. With a tiny bit of arm-twisting and perhaps a few promises of materialistic delayed-gratitude, he caved.

He can tell you in his own words his exact thoughts, though, because he will be sharing the blogging.  We all will.  He will be responsible for Sunday posts and I have promised that if “This sucks!” or “Fuck my life,” is what he is thinking, then that is what he’s allowed to say.  Deal with it.  Glenn, Chloe, and I will each post twice a week so ideally we will blog daily.

This is not a blog about pinching pennies or taking bags of clothes to the Salvation Army.  While we will certainly be doing these things, we felt our premise had to be larger than that or we’d be done blogging in a week.  Tops. We’ve come up with 12 monthly areas where we will concentrate our efforts, but will really be dealing with them simultaneously.  The thought being it will keep our blogging fresher and more appetizing than a re-hash of how many coupons we used and how thrifty I was at each meal.  Realistically speaking, if we are curbing our eating out, we will save money period.  And the fact that the onus will be on me to cook daily is – to anyone who knows me – already a laughable and finite premise.  They’d probably give this a month.  Tops.

We will be dabbling with our impact on the environment, our consumerism, our lack of spiritualism, our priorities, and a whole host of other issues that we assume will evolve organically.  We are looking forward to doing this.  We expect to increase our already tight family bond.  We enjoy thinking about minimizing all the noise that “stuff” and wasted errands bring to our lives.

Looking at “austerity” or “austere” in the dictionary gives you a pretty bleak idea of what we are trying or going to accomplish, I’m afraid.  I know.  I looked.  The most austere definition is “simple” or “pared back” and that’s what we’re aiming for.  We will be trimming off the fat – literally for me, I’m on a diet – and emerging a healthier, happier family.  Please join us on our journey.

Talk to you tomorrow.  It’s my day.  Sarah.

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