My grandmother lived during the depression, and like many other people her age, it affected her view of frugality for the rest of her life. I think anyone who has gone through hard times has learned to be truly frugal. Some people might have thought my grandmother took it to too great of an extent, but I understood the way she thought.
My grandmother saved everything that had any possible use. Many of my relatives thought that she had a button collection. But actually, she didn't collect buttons as a hobby. She merely saved buttons from discarded clothing so that the buttons could be re-purposed. I lived with her for about a year, and I watched the way she took care to save every useful thing. People knew that she would find a new home for things, so they often brought her bags of used clothing. Many times I watched her carefully go through those bags of clothing and take out what could not be worn again. But she didn't throw those things away. She would cut off the buttons, zippers, etc, and then cut the clothing up to be used for rags. She would bag up the rags and sell them to the nearby auto mechanic garages. The rest of the clothing she would sort by size and box up. If anyone with children came to visit her, she would pull out the boxes and let them "shop" for free. I saw many needy people come to her door and leave with a new wardrobe. There were many families that had trouble making ends meet. They would be given clothing, coats, and shoes. They were always so grateful to receive the help, and they knew that she didn't look down upon them for taking it. She knew what it was to go without, and she wanted to help anyone she could.
Here in China people are also very frugal. Even though they are experiencing some degree of wealth, the chinese people still aren't as well off as most people in America. I have been told that most Chinese save 80% of what they earn. Makes me think that I certainly could do better! I've often told my husband that if hard times come to us, then we need to remember how the Chinese do things.
Curious about how the other consortium members treated the subject of frugality? Check out their links!
Rummuser, Anu, Ashkok, Gaelikka, Grannymar, , Padmum, Magpie11, andAkanksha,Will Knot, Maria the Silver Fox, Anki, Nema Noor Paul Plain Joe, and Rohit, Black watertown, The Old Fossil, our newest member MAXI! and last, but not least SHACKMAN! :)