• Posts Tagged ‘recession’

    Modern-Day Recession Era Skills

    by  • March 2, 2009 • Tagged: ,  • Comments

    If you’ve paid any attention to the media, you’re aware that we as a country aren’t doing too well financially. Much has been written that compares our situation today to the Great Depression that began in 1929. To that end, many are taking lessons learned from the Depression era and are applying them to today’s life. For example, Depression era cooking is now chic, darning socks is the new black, and being frugal is the lifestyle of the moment.

    Unlike the Depression era, we have tons more electronic gadgets and toys that have become intertwined with our everyday living. Computers, televisions, and even IPods are commonly found in most peoples’ households. In the last few years, we’ve been condition to think that electronic gadgetry is more often easier and economic to replace rather than repair. But is this always the case?

    Our TiVo has been on the fritz since at least last summer. The first sign was intermittent audio drop outs. I thought it was just a fluke – maybe our satellite signal wasn’t up to snuff. After we returned from our honeymoon, the problem was increasing worse. We started missing crucial dialog on our favorite shows. More annoyingly, we were missing what ingredients Gordon Ramsay was putting in his dishes when we were watching The F Word. The final straw that broke the camel’s back was this past weekend, when the TiVo spontaneously restarted itself numerous times.

    Her and I had to make a decision: do we blow $100 on another non-TiVo DirecTV DVR? Because we love our TiVo so much, I was determined to make it work. I researched what could possibly be wrong with the TiVo and tried all of the non-invasive troubleshooting techniques. None worked. It seemed that I had no choice but to replace the hard drive in a last-ditch effort to save the ailing DVR.

    Weirdly enough, replacing the hard drive wouldn’t have cost us any money – I had an external hard drive laying around that I dismantled and appropriated for the repair. After commandeering our main computer for the whole day, I went to work, diligently following the directions on my laptop. After 10 painstaking hours, I put everything back together and plugged in the TiVo.

    It powered up…that’s a good sign. I waited for what seemed like an eternity for it to get to the point where I could watch TV. When the signal was coming in, I tuned to a channel. Audio! And it didn’t drop out! Holy crap! The next step: were our recordings saved? I furiously clicked through to play a recorded show…success!

    Doing this saved us at least $100 and gave me the skills to fix our TiVo should this ever happen again. What modern-day recession era skills are you most proud of?

    Does Recession Equal Romance?

    by  • January 22, 2009 • Tagged: ,  • Comments

    Usually when I receive press releases I just ignore them; deleting them would be too much work. But, when I saw the title New Survey Finds Couples Site Recession for Boost in Romance, I had to bite. While I’m not going to regurgitate the whole thing here, I’ll grab some highlights and put our commentary in as well.

    According to AreYouRomantic.com’s Romance in a Recession poll:

    • 69 percent of people were satisfied with their relationship over the past year despite economic concerns
    • One out of three people feel that financial constraints have brought them and their partner closer together

    I’d have to agree with this. Our finances, while far from perfect, are definitely something that we’ve had to come together to work through. By sticking together, we’ve put ourselves in much better financial position than we were in 3 years ago, especially during these tough economic times.

    • Nearly 20 percent of people feel that their sex lives have improved as a result of the economy
    • Over half of all couples are spending more quality time together due to financial constraints
    • 43 percent agree that they are spending more intimate time together

    Hey, sex is free, right? What better thing can you do to kill 2 minute’s an hour’s worth of time that’s free?

    • 60 percent of people agree that financial limitations have not led to increased conflict
    • 34 percent of respondents claim that over the past year, they haven’t argued with their partner about finances

    We’re no strangers to arguing about money. In fact, I think that a little arguing about money is a good thing, as it forces everyone to be brutally honest. Most of the time we keep things pretty civil.

    What about you? Has the current economic climate affected your relationships in any way? Let us know!

    You can see the full press release here, and the official blog post here. Please be aware that AreYouRomantic is sponsored by a travel company, so feel free to take everything with a grain of salt.

    Weathering The Economic Crisis: Bolstering Our Resumes

    by  • December 18, 2008 • Tagged:   • Comments

    We both currently have good jobs, but there have been some frightening indicators that these jobs may be in jeopardy in the future. We already have heard that similar firms to the ones where we work are not hiring right now, which means that if we were to lose our jobs, it would be very difficult to find a new job quickly, and the competition for any openings would be stiff. In light of this we have created a plan to bolster our resumes to improve our employability. Of course, this can’t hurt even if our current jobs stay safe. An improved resume will look great during an annual review too! So here’s what we’re doing:

    Bolstering Her’s Resume:
    I work in a field where it is possible to obtain a professional license, although I have not yet done so. I recently started working aggressively toward obtaining a license. I also researched the certifications available in my field, and chose one to pursue. To obtain this certification I will have to learn some new things that will actually help me in my current work. I hope to be the first in my office to obtain this certification, which will show my employer that I am dedicated. It’s a win-win.

    Bolstering Him’s Resume:
    Him’s employer is currently offering to reimburse certain educational costs, although this benefit could be eliminated in the future. Him has decided to take advantage of this reimbursement and is taking a class that will eventually lead to a certification in Him’s field. Some of the other employees in Him’s office are also working toward this certification and this will make him competitive with his peers. These classes also help Him network with industry leaders, which could provide Him with job leads if he is laid off.

    Are you bolstering your resume as a defense against the recession?

    Things are Getting Pretty Scary Around Here

    by  • December 17, 2008 • Tagged:   • Comments

    Friday was an ominous day for us. On Friday, I learned that a company very similar to the one I work at had just laid off almost 150 employees. Rumors abound that this other firm may also be facing bankruptcy in the near future. This is a competitor firm that shares clients and markets with my firm, so this is frightening for me. My firm has indicated that it is not currently in financial trouble but one never knows what the future holds.

    Friday was not good for Him either. Him’s employer notified workers on Friday that due to non-payment by their clients, Him’s firm is unable to make payroll for the first time ever. This means that Him did not get his regular paycheck, and we don’t know when he will. His firm has scheduled a firm-wide business meeting where the agenda will include a discussion of how their firm will weather the financial storm. We don’t know exactly what that means, but it may mean decreases in Him’s benefits or compensation.

    In light of these developments we had a family finances discussion over the weekend. We decided that we are going to really buckle down and cut back on spending to try to conserve the funds we have.

    Is the economic crisis getting scary for you, too?