You’ll Have To Pry It From My Cold Dead Fingers

"I demand a haircut and a puppy latte."

I saw an NBC news report on television about the phenomenon of hair salons thriving in spite of the bad economy. Barber shops and salons continue to do good business throughout the recession. Car companies, banks and newspapers are dying, but the beauty industry booms. That really intrigues me. I did a little research to see what other businesses are growing during the current downturn.

Starbucks is down, European hair removal spas are up. Diapers are down, but diaper rash creme is up. (Probably because people are leaving their babies’ diapers on longer so they don’t have to buy them as often). Designer purses and designer lipsticks are shooting out the doors as fast as they can make them. Alcohol is down but energy drinks sell like hotcakes. Or ‘like energy drinks’ might be the new cliche. But the industry that is growing by leaps and bounds? Gourmet pet foods.

Why do non-essential products continue to turn a good profit even though the majority of people are dealing with hard economic times? Is it a comfort response? A reminder of ‘the good old days’ when you could buy on impulse whenever you wanted (although the only thing I would call that is unwise)?  Or are we balancing our budgets by sacrificing in other areas so we don’t have to give up our favorite indulgences?

Here at our house, we’ve been affected by the economy in a noticeable way, and have made a lot of cutbacks: no cable, no big purchases, generic label foods and we’ve almost eliminated eating out. But there are a few ‘necessities’ we aren’t ready to part with yet. Dunkin Donuts whole bean coffee. Internet access. Goat’s milk soap. Charlie’s Chicken on Mondays (because this girl will NEVER be able to make edible fried chicken). The latest Starcraft game. Keeper Hubby’s got to have an outlet besides catering to my every whim. 🙂

At the same time I’ve been interested in minimalism. It’s fits in with my penchant for decluttering and organizing. I’ve started the 100 Thing Challenge several times to lukewarm results, attempting to decrease my consumer footprint. It’s a tangible way to see how blessed we really are. Most Americans would have a hard time narrowing their possessions down to 100 things.

Whether you want to embrace minimalism or work on saving money in the current economy, here’s the question we’re dying for you to answer:

What thing(s) will you only give up when they pry it from your cold dead fingers? 🙂 Post a comment and let’s have a little fun.

13 thoughts on “You’ll Have To Pry It From My Cold Dead Fingers

    • I miss the Sunday-after-church restaurant visit. 🙂 Don’t ever give up your daughters’ birthday parties! Even if you have to scale them down, those are memories you can’t put a price on. 🙂


  1. Great post. I’ve been living the starving artist life for 2 years now and lovin’ it. I wish I could say my weight is down as a result, but that’s one my 2012 New Year’s resolutions. My life is so very different than it was a little over 3 years ago coming off the loss of my wife. The community of talented writers I’ve met here in Tulsa way more than makes up for no cable and many other not so necessary items I don’t really miss in my life. Besides, I can watch NCIS on on the computer any old time I want. Still gotta have my weekly Pauley Perrette fix U know. I now have 3 novels in print & eBook and plan to release 4 more this year. Write on!!


  2. The hubby and I have been working on simplifying our lives. It’s not easy. But I have realized how “things” really aren’t important in the grand scheme. I wouldn’t give up my cats (though I don’t feed them gourmet or buy them clothes or fancy tiaras), my writing, my books, or my coffee. Yikes…does that make me the crazy cat lady??
    Thanks, as always, for the awesome post!


  3. I’m sure I have many things I could give up if I had to, but the last on that list would be good coffee, my computer and printer, my TV and dvd player along with my movie collection, and my wonderful buttery soft leather chair and ottoman where I read, watch movies, pray and enjoy life.

    Great post.


  4. Love the photo! Reminds me of my cat and her favorite toy 🙂

    I constantly war with myself about what perks I’m willing to give up now that times have gotten hard. I still haven’t been willing to give up the cable or internet. I’ll never give up the cat, I take it seriously that I made a commitment when I adopted her. And I still do as much as I can to make those $6 matinee movies in the mornings when I’m not working.

    I must say, it’s been easier than expected to give up eating/drinking out and ordering delivery. But I miss going out as a social activity, and those carefree times when it seemed like work would keep coming and there would always be a little spending money to spare.


  5. Thanks for stopping by! The photo is of my daughter’s precocious Cairn terrier.

    We stopped our cable, but haven’t been hurting too bad for entertainment between watching free shows on Hulu and Amazon Prime that’s already been paid for the year. I completely agree about pets, although I feel so bad for some people who are in such a bad predicament that they don’t have any choice but to give up their beloved animal. The shelters are full of them. 😦


  6. I don’t mind eating at home and I love hitting yard sales and thrift stores versus going to the mall. It also wouldn’t bother me if we gave up satellite & TV (my husband would curl up and die) but good coffee, internet access and my computer are absolute necessities. I can’t even imagine what I would do without them.


  7. I would give up practically anything but books–ebooks and the nice, old physical variety. I remember during the 2007 ice storm when we didn’t have electricity for a week, and couldn’t leave the house for the first couple of days, my family went nuts without electronics, but I was happily reading the entire week. Yes, once I could get out I did go to a local coffee shop to use their WiFi to check mail, but that was really it. The rest I could have gone without much longer than the week. We had heat because of our wonderful vented fireplace, and hot water because of natural gas. But it was so nice not walking into a room at night and seeing all the red and blue lights glowing from machines that never really go off, and not having to listen to the hum of the refrigerator, or the washing machine, or turn off lights someone else left on, same with the TV. So, it all comes back to books, which were terrific bonuses during this time, since I could truthfully say I couldn’t do many other things. So, final answer, Kristin, books are what you’ll have to pry out of my cold fingers. Yes, I know books are plural, but I think of all my books as “one wonderful thing” or collection if you will, so that’s my answer and I’m sticking with it.



  8. One reason I think gourmet pet food may be up is due to the scare a year or so ago on pet food from China. I remember talking with a friend at the time who told me I was so smart to feed my cat Fancy Feast because that was the only catfood brand that hadn’t been on the recall list. I explained that I wasn’t smart, I was just owned by a picky feline who wouldn’t eat any other type, and I finally gave up when I got tired of having to give away food she refused to eat. Just another thought.



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