Yes! magazine has an inspiring article about how Americans are adapting to job loss and lower incomes by developing DIY skills and refocusing on their families and communities. Corbyn Hightower is a case in point. She had a successful career selling natural skin care products, and a comfortable lifestyle made possible by a booming economy - a beautiful home, expensive SUV, gym membership and the best consumer goods. She worked long hours and travelled a lot, so her husband stayed home to care for their 3 kids. When the recession hit, Corbyn's commissions dried up and she lost her job. As a result, the family had to sell their house, car and other possessions, and drop luxuries like the gym membership and cable TV service. They rented a small home in a humble neighborhood, and started raising chickens and growing their own food. They've learned how to save money by making things from scratch, fixing things that break and trading with neighbors. As a result, the family is able to spend more time together, riding bikes, harvesting fruit and getting to know their neighbors. Corbyn says, “I think we have to reinvent ‘poor.’ Most everyone in my life is enduring new poverty. It’s an unfamiliar and scary leap. And if it turns out that some of these changes feel good, well, then it’s a win-win. The Great Recession is a watershed time for my generation, possibly the era that will live on to define us.” Well said, Corbyn.
about this blog
Hi, my name is Diane and I live in Portland, Oregon. I'm learning how to reduce my expenses so I can spend less time working to pay the bills and more time doing things that are meaningful to me, including volunteer work. I'm finding that it's not easy - our economy is designed to keep us trapped in a "spend more, work more" cycle. In this blog, I explore these issues and share insights from experts about the new economy, social justice, sustainable living and related topics. I hope this information is helpful and interesting to you.