Recovery on a tight budget

I’m sitting in my office and looking through several of the tools I use regularly for sobriety. I remembered where I bought each of these items, a small quirk of mine. That is when the inspiration for this post came.

I bought my first book set from my first group. It was cheaper, much cheaper then. Over the years, I have given away most of the recovery books that I have purchased. I usually buy my books from the groups, especially since I went in to Barnes&Noble and received the greatest shock of my life. I kid you not, the book was 4 times the cost of my Big Book bought from the group.

Yet, I have bought books from other sources as well. I regularly shop, and have purchased used books at a steep discount even after shipping costs. I have usually found books at less than half price there. Another book retailer I use is, the sister store for EBay. 

For other supplies I use, such as pens and highlighters, rulers and paper, I go to Dollar Stores. I also rock those back to school clearance sales. Why pay full price for notebooks when they go on sale the week after school starts for a dime a notebook? Why spend over two dollars for a composition notebook, when the dollar store has them for that same dollar? I have saved quite a bit of money that way.

Yet my favorite way to get recovery literature and supplies is to hit the thrift stores. Recovery books show up there quite often. Sometimes, they just get thrown away, which is almost a crime, and a heart rending one at that. Why fill a landfill up with books? I ‘rescue’ these books and pass them on to others.

Lastly, there are E-Books. If you absolutely must avoid the dead tree version of our literature, and want to spend the money, you can buy our literature, as well as other fellowships offerings through either your device’s software, or other venues.

Recovery is not cheap. I say this with a smile on my face. From the hours spent learning the program and working the steps, to the money put into treatment, literature, and survival items, it will cost something. However, it is a price that I am willing to pay. You see, sobriety is still much cheaper than boozing and using was for me.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below.


And we have ceased fighting

In my first step, I listed anger as one of my addictions. Today, it is the hardest of them all to kick. I sit here at the laptop, after reading a news article about someone I know who has helped me in my recovery. The article is a prime example of muckraking, and I will not post a link to it.

Yet, I am responsible for something here. I am responsible for my anger.

In step 3, I made the decision to turn my will and my life over to the care of God as I understood Him. I also began to live as if God was my Employer. I was to let go of resentments, in step 4, and forgive the people who had harmed me in any real or imagined way, step 4-8.  In step 10 I am to root out the anger, and get rid of it, talking to another immediately, as well as making amends as quickly as I can for any harms I have done.

Yet this anger hurts. I am hurting for the person named in the article. Currently, they are quite far away, and cannot answer the article in person. This anger is two fold. I am angry at the reporter, for repeating lies, and I am angry at the liar.

The only thing I can do, is to get it down on paper, talk to another, and pray. I have to pray not just for my mentor. (I had done a 5th step with this person, ergo they qualify as a mentor.) I also have to pray for the reporter and for the liar. See page 552 of the 4th edition Big Book if you are curious as to why.

I cannot take action on my anger in any other way. It is the correct thing to do, and it is what my Boss wants me to do. So, I will get right on that.

Have a good day, if you have any questions, please leave a comment below.

Recovery links


My online homegroup can be found here. In the rooms.

My favorite research website on recovery, You will find our history, grapevine articles, speaker tapes, study guides and much much more there.

Recovery shop has so many of the toys and goodies that are extra in sobriety. They also have books, covers, bookmarks and even jewelry.

Online Intergroup has resources for online meetings in many languages and formats all over the world. is our magazine. There is even an app for that!

Recovery talks one of the many online resources for AA speakers. You can listen to a meeting at any time.

AA’s website has many many resources for all of us.

For Joe and Charlie studies, click here

Twelve Step Prayers List 12 step prayers

This is just a quick short list. I may edit this post to add more over time.  If you have any questions, please leave a comment below.

Studying the book, and questioning my sobriety.

Good Morning,

This morning, I’m up a bit early, and I am taking a break from my own recovery homework. I am doing step 1 again. I decided to work step 1 as if I was a newcomer, doing the homework for the first time. So I am studying the Big Book from inside the front cover to the back.

I am taking notes, writing down definitions, and doing exactly what I have asked the people I sponsor to do.

I am setting aside the fact that I have worked the steps many times and written down these same notes many times. I am using the Big Book as a text book. Each time I study the book, I learn something new. Something of my alcoholic brain and ego slips, and is replaced by something different.

Recently, I began to doubt my own sobriety, and my motives for staying sober. It happens to many of us. I had been told that my standards are too high as a sponsor. That rocked me to the core. I considered for a few moments getting drunk. I wallowed in self-pity for awhile. However I also talked to others.

My AA friends reassured me, but also told me that I am…

  1. Demanding- from my oldest friend and sponsor.
  2. A meany- from a good friend and AA member, said in jest… I think.
  3. Strict- from my own 10th step inventory.
  4. They wouldn’t want me for a sponsor, and they wouldn’t want themselves for a sponsor either. – from a good friend and AA member.

So, back to the books I go. I am following my own directions, word for word, that are posted on this blog. I am doing this for three reasons. Firstly, because I doubt of my ability to sponsor. Secondly, because an alcoholic asked me to sponsor them yesterday. Thirdly, because I need to re-evaluate the words I have posted on this blog, as well as the methods I use to sponsor. I pray I can be of service to that alcoholic.

So, in pursuit of rigorous honesty, I will post a couple of pics. I went to my notebook stash and grabbed a couple of fresh notebooks yesterday. I went to the pen stash and found some of my favorites. I grabbed an old collegiate dictionary, and got to work.

Below you will find my definitions page, as well as the first page of step one questions.

Here you will find my notes on the book based on where I am at right now.
If you have any questions, feel free to email me at

The only meeting you need is the one you missed

Good afternoon,

Just returned home from our morning in town. I dropped Dad off at church, and drove over to AA. It was a great meeting, and I learned so much.

Nothing wrong with that is there?

This morning’s topic was step 10. We covered pages 84 to 85 in the Big Book, starting with ‘This thought’ and ending with ‘spiritual condition’.

As the others were sharing, I realized that being in fit spiritual condition is a huge thing. I listened to the other members share, and thought about my own sobriety and the work that I do. Being in fit spiritual condition means that I am living the program, rather than just working the steps. It means “Practicing these principles in all our affairs.” It means that I have to live each day with God as my Employer, and do what is in front of me to do.

I didn’t expand on this part of the subject in the meeting. I was mostly focused on what others were saying. Another thought occurred to me, as I sat there. Of all the meetings it is possible to be at, how many have I missed? On the days I drive to town, how often do I just drive home, and not grab a cuppa and head to the next meeting? What vital part of my sobriety am I missing out on, due to my own laziness?

I can’t answer that, but I can say that I missed out on being of maximum use to others. I missed out on service work. I missed out on learning something new. I can say that I need the meetings that I have missed.

So, on the days I can, I will go to a meeting. I will work the program. I will do my best to be of service.

That’s all I have for now. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at