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We're the poorest family in the neighborhood tribe

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
We are not "poor" but we live in a high-income area so I'm made to feel poor a lot. I am actually secure with our values - we choose to have more time in our lives than money. We have jobs that contribute to the common good etc. I feel like I don't relate sometimes - we are not jetting to Paris for a special birthday, don't have a vacation house, send our kids to private school etc. I'm trying to find a few people to relate to - I just want to feel like there is someone who I might see on a regular basis who "I'm in the same boat with".

Thanks for listening.
post #2 of 37

Yes, please.

That's us, in a nutshell. We probably AREN'T the poorest family in town, but we certainly make no effort to compete with those who are wealthy. So, sometimes I feel like I am the poorest mom in town. My sons are happy and loved and thats what matters.
post #3 of 37
We're definitely among the lowest income in our town. It's not the end of the world though... our neighbors have awesome yardsales which supply my kids with clothes, and I visit the town dump 2-3 times per week to pick. My DD will be in kindergarten in the fall and I'm a bit apprehensive about her making friends and visiting them in their huge homes.
post #4 of 37
Same. We live on as little income as possible. But I feel quite far from being "poor" for it.

I've noticed that the closer our family stays in touch with the earth and natural rhythms the happier and more fulfilled we are.

We make a lot of things for ourselves rather than buy. When we do buy we try to find it second hand. Occasionally, we barter. Freecycle is also a source. We grow some (I wish all) of our food.
post #5 of 37
Funny to see this post today....
I too understand what you are talking about. I generally don't worry about it because we have everything that we need. We grow most of our own food, thrift shop (just got back in with some great scores!) and make ends meet. The only time I get in my head (like this afternoon) is when I see a woman whom "looks-high maintenance" and very beautiful (in most societies thoughts) and wonder if my natural look is good enough. I feel beautiful the way I am (most days) and know that is all I need. Still..... gets me sometimes.
post #6 of 37
shyly raises hand and says "Here".

post #7 of 37
we're pretty broke and live in a middle-upper class neighborhood. We bought the house 2 years ago before it went into foreclosure. It was a mess, and still is pretty messy. My DH works a LOT of hours, and we have a 1 yr old, so our property is not as well maintained as it should be. We are surrounded by perfectly landscaped and maintained homes and properties. Our neighbors are mostly older than us, like our parents' age. Some of them are really nasty, to the point of calling the town 3 different times to complain that our pool is breeding mosquitos. (it's not--it's just a dirty work in progress because the previous owners didn't take care of it.) How unneighborly is it to call the town before asking us about it?!
Mostly it doesn't bother me, but it would be nice to be friendly with the neighbors.
post #8 of 37
also, i want to start line drying some clothes. they're gonna love that.
post #9 of 37
I'm looking forward to moving out of my town.
post #10 of 37

hey that's what my husband says

My husband is a Truck driver and currently the only one without Cell phone because of many factors but one of them being for the entire winter i was out of work. We had our gas cut off because of a misunderstanding. Still waiting for the appology on that one and we are now caught up on everything except taxes and Cc but we are diggin away at those on a new plan.

We live on the "rich side of town" according to local drivers my husband works with. They all live in houses that are "war time" houses small 2 bedroom no basement no dining room. etc.
We have spacious 3 bedroom back split with inground poool and 2 relatively new vehs (02 Subaru Legacy and 04 Ford F150 ) both purchased used.

But my husband complains that he is the poorest driver even though he is in the top 5 earners. He tried to blame my 3 months of no work but i reminded him of the 13 years of poor money management on both our parts that led to our current credit score. GRRRRR

One paycheck at a time we pay things down. I just wish i could go back to my salaried days and smack myself for not saving and paying things down THen.
post #11 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by melon View Post
My DH works a LOT of hours, and we have a 1 yr old, so our property is not as well maintained as it should be. We are surrounded by perfectly landscaped and maintained homes and properties. Our neighbors are mostly older than us, like our parents' age. Some of them are really nasty, to the point of calling the town 3 different times to complain that our pool is breeding mosquitos. (it's not--it's just a dirty work in progress because the previous owners didn't take care of it.) How unneighborly is it to call the town before asking us about it?!
Mostly it doesn't bother me, but it would be nice to be friendly with the neighbors.
I'm not alone!!!

last year my pool and garden was a mess.
this year i am ahead of the curve but i have been sick for 3 weeks making me worry about falling behind. I refuse to pay another year of some kid who cares not to mow my lawn and charge me 100 a month for it. I have to do it once a week and sometimes im doing it at 930 pm when i finish work and have some time when it is not scorching hot.
and my lawn is 80 % clover which stays green even when dry neighbours dont complain ... yet.
post #12 of 37
oh and ... i have brocolli growing where i took out a bush this spring in the front yard. my immediate neighbour has no problem with it.
post #13 of 37
Hi! This kinda sounds like us. We dont live in a "rich area" but we have one of the smallest houses in the area (just a ranch with a basement-everyone else has 2 or 3 story homes). We dont have any of the toys everyone else does-pools, boats, atv's, big screen tvs, ect. And my children are the only children in the neighborhood without a cell phone, and some kids in the neighborhood have ipods and iphones. And my kids are also the only kids that dont have tvs in their bedroom.
I used to try to keep up with everyone. Designer clothes for me and the kids, we had a pool that i couldnt keep up with the work for, coach purses, ect. But it wasnt me, and i was so unhappy and tired of trying to keep up with everyone.
We have one of the larger families out here. I dont work, I choose to stay home and homeschool. I am the only mom that doesnt work here. But I would rather stay home with my children now, than by them what ever they want.
I LOVE to garden and grow our own food too! We have apple and pear trees and I grow alot of veggies. We just put in a blueberry bush this year. But I, like some of you have said, just dont have time to keep up with the yard! When I get out to weed the flower garden in the front, my 1 year old takes off down the street. I try to pull weeds and work on the garden while chasing him.
post #14 of 37
I do have to add, that I am more happier living in our little world here. Than trying to keep up with the neighbors. I just keep a smile on my face and let them know that I am happy, no matter how much money we have.
post #15 of 37
This is us. We just moved into a rental in a really nice neighborhood. Everyone around us has fancy cars, boats, etc. There is no way we could keep up with " The Jones' ". We are doing the best with what we have. We are happy and healthy and that's all that matters to us.
post #16 of 37
Our family is the same way. we are in what is considered one of the nicest areas of our town. It is a brand new home, and by the looks of it it is far from "poor" But we like to live frugally. The only reason we have this is b/c we have been so frugal and it was an unfinished foreclosure when we purchased it.
Living a natural, close to our mother earth lifestyle keeps me happy and grounded.
I do feel sometimes like a PP said that when I see a high maintenance momma, with kiddos in tow, and car, etc...am I measuring up? what makes me happy is very simple stuff, no makeup, drying my hair in the sun, and gardening, growing stuff, all natural things. I don't try to be that way, it is just IN me.
I am the kooky and so classy neighbor who hangs all my laundry on my deck, and my hand washables on hangers from trees in our backyard! I keep thinking at he next homeowners meeting they are going to make a no hanging laundry outside rule because of me!
I love reading all the PP because I feel that what we are doing is something special.
post #17 of 37
We're like this! Everyone else in our area eats out four to five nights a week (!), has a gardener (even the people who _are_ gardeners, which kinda cracks me up), nanny or daycare even for SAHP, dogwalkers, new cars, yearly vacations, expensive salon trips (I can't even afford to get a decent haircut here, prices are so inflated.)

I mow our lawn, we share trimming the hedges and pruning the roses, hang laundry out on the back porch on indoor/outdoor racks (since the landlady won't let me replace the clothesline poles that were orginally here and are, sadly, falling sideways). I get asked all the time why I don't just "pay someone to do that." When people hear we cloth diaper the first thing they ask is "Oh, what service do you use?" When I say I wash them myself, I get anything from "Ew, doesn't that make your washing machine dirty?!" to "How can you handle the smell?" with the added, "Why don't you just pay someone to do that for you?"
post #18 of 37
subbing
post #19 of 37
Can I join? TBH we really are not the poorest family in town but a)We have bid debts we are sloooooooowly paying off and b)Our strong environmental/DIY values often leave me feeling quite shabby (and not in a chic kind of way ) even in this "green" area.
post #20 of 37
This is so us. We rent a half a house in a nice part of a nice town which we could never afford to live in normally. I hang my diapers on the porch railing to dry in the sun and I hear the eyebrows raising....

We drive our rusting subaru to the town 2 over from us to grocery shop since it's so much cheaper than the local store....oh and none of our neighbors talk to us. We've lived here almost 9 months and not one person intruduced themselves to us. As my dh always says, money can't buy you class.
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