Happy Historic Day

Inauguration Day 2009 is forever burned in our minds and emblazoned on our hearts. What an amazingly uplifting day. How powerful for millions of Americans and others abroad to all be resonating on the single chord of H-O-P-E. Hope for our families. Hope for our friends. And hope for our future.

There are snapshot moments that are already becoming iconic...the entrance of the new first family onto the platform. The queen of soul singing her heart to the masses. The "moment" President Obama made his oath (flubs and all). This will become the "where were you when...???" that is asked for generations to come.

In our household we took the day off from work to soak it all in from the bright images flashing on CNN. This day was especially poignant for J, who descends from African-American and Caucasian parents. In many ways, his story is parallel to Mr. Obama's. And he is proud that our future children will someday be able to dream big and know that it is actually possible that they, one day, could also aspire to the country's highest office. Who knows? One day, our future daughter could be the first African-American, female president! It can happen. And now we all KNOW it.

We also know that there is no magic wand that our new President can wave and save us from all of the turmoil around us. Each of us has to choose personal responsibility in digging out of this situation in whichever way we can. For us? It has meant a move away from materialism. Being artists for so long, money has never been abundant, but even we have been sucked into "keeping up with the Joneses" and living beyond our means from time to time. More recently, we have chosen to give that up. We're aggressively eliminating our debt and building our savings for the first time in our lives. It has meant making a shift in the way we live. We're working on a cash-only basis, which has been a major change for us (oh, me the Queen of the Debit Card). We "spend" all of our monthly income on paper first...designated some for the future, most for the day-to-day stuff, and a little for the whimsical things.

We are also being more mindful of our consumerism...trying to lessen our footprints upon this earth. There is always a way to reduce, reuse and recycle more. When we can, we do. This not only extends to recycling our daily refuse, but also lowering our thermostat (mom is having to adjust to this one!), limiting our purchase of new things (from furniture to vehicles and everything in between), and trying to give more than we take.

There is room for continued growth, for change. And what an awesome time we are in when virtually everyone is vibrating on the same frequency. If only for a moment. That is powerful beyond measure.


Jeff Shaw said...

What a great message! I am a self proclaimed anti-consumer, and thrift captain. What you are doing is very difficult.

Except for our mortgage, my family has lived a debt free existence for a couple of years. It was very tough, but I have to tell you it is fantastically liberating - especially once you get past the WE DID IT phase and start living it.

This country (and world) would have much fewer problems if we could get past the idea that things make us happy. I wish you well and like reading your blog. Oh by the way, Welcome to the land of velveeta and chicken pot pies! ;)