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A Move Back to Family Time

Yesterday, after church the family came over to our house for a late lunch. I made seco de pollo served with rice and accompanied by salad and bread. The cost to feed 16 people was just over $30. Not including the time at church (the Jewish guy was excused and did the cooking), we spent a little over four enjoyable hours together. Everyone had a great time.

Our kids went home with their visiting cousins to spend the night at their grandparents, which meant Roxanne and I had a kid free night. We haven’t gone out to catch a movie in awhile, so we decided to go last night. The two tickets along with a single popcorn and a shared large soda cost just over $30. I couldn’t help but think during the movie that I would have been just as happy watching a movie at home.

When I consider the two times yesterday I dropped $30, I have to admit I felt I got a lot more bang for my buck (and simple enjoyment) from the lunch at home than I did from the movie in the evening. Like many others, we’re watching our budget a lot closer these days, and I have to tell you it will probably be sometime before I decide to go to a movie again. I can’t imagine that I’m alone, so I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a number of movie theater chains go under in 2009.

But, there is a positive side to the economic crisis in which we now find ourselves – a return to family values. You’re going to find my more and more families spending time together, or in some case just staying together:

Circuit courts across the country report downturns in the number of divorce and separation filings. Cook County’s Circuit Court in Chicago saw a 5% decrease in filings — about 600 cases — in the first three quarters of 2008 compared to the same period last year. Similar drops were reported in other cities across the country.

This domestic situation is also confirmed in a poll by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. The AAML surveyed its members — all divorce lawyers — and found that 37% of them have seen a decrease in the number of couples seeking a divorce, while just 19% saw an increase in divorce cases.

In past generations, people found a way to make a marriage work for a variety of reasons – including economic neccessity. I also read somewhere, although now I can’t fnd the post, that people are not going to be as quick to pack up and move arond the country. This means we’ll be seeing people stay closer to their extended family. I’ve got to believe that socially this will be much better for our society as a whole.