The Affect of the Economy: A Reminiscent View

June 22, 2011 § Leave a comment

In 2008, the economy took a downturn. I’m sure I stole that sentence from someone, but I don’t know who it was. Maybe it’s so commonly said that it’s become free for anyone to use.

on the train from Chicago to our "new-to-me" home together in Milwaukee. it was a very exciting trip.

Josh and I got married at the end of 2008, and when I moved up to Milwaukee to be with him, I couldn’t find a job. No one was hiring. Not even fast food joints. 
So, when Josh went to work, I stayed at home and caught up on reading, movies, and general interest trivia. (I would have crafted, but there was no room.)

bathroom to the left, closet to the right. obviously, this was after i had moved in.

kitchen to the left, bed to the right. i'm very proud of how uncluttered it was.

From December to April, I learned about LORT, Ten Chimneys, Anthropologie, vegetarians, downtown Milwaukee, food stamps, the Actor’s Equity Association, and bilateral pneumonia. (Poor Josh. He was in 3 shows at once when he got sick. Thanks to Larry Shue‘s foundation for paying for his medication.) I learned about other things, too, but they don’t affect my life quite as much today as the afore mentioned items do.

We were freshly married, so it was nice to have that time to get acclimated to being a wife. I brought Josh lunch daily and ate with him. I got to know Josh better and more quickly since we were alone up in Wisconsin with no family to run to if we were not seeing eye to eye. I became creative in ways that I never had to be creative: living in a cramped room with a new roommate who had just as many things as I did, creating a clever chocolate concoction to pacify my chocolate craving (we couldn’t afford a Snicker’s bar), having an awesome day out on a date and spending less than $10 all day, learning how to bundle up tightly but fashionably to walk anywhere between December and March, etc.

After our time in Milwaukee was over, we went to Normal, IL so that Josh could go to graduate school. With the economy in turmoil, the best thing we thought we could do was go to school. (Josh went first because I’m indecisive about what I want to do.) We rented an apartment (sight unseen – yikes), moved our 2 pieces of furniture into the 2 bedrooms, and sat on the floor in awe of all the place we had in our possession. Taj Mahal.

roomy closet to the left, bedroom to the right. (we got a mattress and boxspring about a week after we moved in. $150. used. the air mattress had holes in it.)

kitchen to the left, living room to the right. yes, those are car seats you see as furniture. we took the seats out of the van as they were more useful in the house.

bathroom to the left, bedroom 2 to the right. we did eventually get furniture for the second bedroom.

Over the past 2 years, we’ve inherited furniture from family members and collected odds and ends from thrift stores. Our possessions no longer fit in two minivans. (Thanks for helping us move, Mom!) Oh, and I got a job. I figure that means the economy is doing a little better.

All that to say, the economic climate affected us, but perhaps unlike the way it affected the rest of the world. We didn’t really know anything different than what we were experiencing at that time. I’m not saying we didn’t worry about money – I cried when I found out exactly how much we owed for Josh’s undergrad school bills – but I think we rolled well with the punches. I’m thankful we are where we are, and I’m excited to see where we go when Josh graduates!


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