This is very long...
About 2 years ago, I wasn't working and DH was working 20 hrs a week (dry spell in jobs) and we were getting $500 a month in food stamps. Megan, your SIL needs to learn that in some cases, store brand is just as good as name brand; that some times bulk is better; and that tap water is perfect for everyone. We were able to feed 2 adults, 2 toddlers and a baby (all 3 kids on WIC, so no buying milk and formula) on that $500 a month and only used about 300 of it. That would save us a bit to splurge at birthdays and other special occassions...or get pedialyte when some one was sick.
As for now, our computer was PIF with our tax refund check 2 years ago, as well as paying off a credit card totally and lowering some others and buying the kids new shoes (3 kids at 3 pairs each at an average of 15 bucks a pair). Our internet service is charged to a credit card that is not used for anything else. It is payed off every year because our minimal payment is less than the service. I use it to keep in touch with family and friends and to do research on my son's Autism/PDD without having to get a sitter or drag kids to the library. Our 1995 Saturn was paid by DH's grandmother for the last half of the loan. Our 2000 used (35,000+ miles) Windstar is being paid by my entire paycheck. We have lived in our apt since Nov 1997. The carpet is 35 years old and has bare spots and holes. Our rent is income-based and our FS amount for May was $90.00. That won't feed my family (with 1 child still on WIC) for a week. I do not enjoy being on gov't assistance but I do appriciate it every time I need a prescription filled. My BCPs are covered. Most of the children's meds are covered. Where would that 20-something dollars a month come from for my pills w/out the insurance? My kids would not have had their shots w/out their insurance. I know that there are people that pay into the system that never have and never will use it. But because of them helping to pay for our medical bills, my kids are not going to school sick,therefore their kids are not coming home sick. What goes around, comes around.
I might be a bit out-dated here, but I thought that military families can live in on-base houses and get groceries at the commisary? My mother took advantage of the commisary and shopped there because of the no tax thing on groceries (this was when I was 8 and younger). I remember having 2-3 carts full of food when we left-for 1 adult and 3 little children (8, 5, 2 yrs). Seems that it would last a month (probably after the 3rd whenshe would get Daddy's SS checks for us kids. Plus, Momma knows how to pack; nothing was just tossed into the buggy!
I have also heard that for the amount of work they do and the fact that they work 24 hrs a day, military persons get paid sh*tty-I think it boiled down to about 2 bucks an hour or less.
I want to say that I am behind on this forum. Sorry. I had to put my 2 cents worth in. I am not mad at anyone. I am trying not to be defensive. There are alot of resons why and some are honest people. I just think, for those too polite to be nosey
, that I would let you into my life a little to see what's going on.