Are you? Booming, I mean?

I once told the story of my depression-era parents. My father was born in 1908 and mom in 1913. My father turned 21 the year the stock market crashed; Mom was 16. Both of them were deeply imprinted by the long bread lines and no work of the 1930s. Because of that they feared debt, regularly saved money, were frugal, and only bought what they could pay for in cash. Dad died with his home paid in full, a free-and-clear car, and six figures of cash in the bank.

What about you?

Cash is flowing again; credit has loosened up. The phones are ringing and our backlogs are packed and comfortable. You may even have found the need to take the plunge and hire new help. But remember, businesses fail because of debt. Don’t fall prey to that temptation again. Plan ahead because the pendulum always swings back. That means times are good but they will inevitably turn downward again at some point. It’s just the way it is and has always been. Bank your cash, stuff your reserves. If you can’t pay for it, don’t buy it. Stay as slim as you can, remembering all you have learned. If you made it through this tough recession, then bank on your lessons. Debt is nothing more than sticking your head in the sand.

Now is the time to remember the recession. Just like Mom and Dad -- never forget.

--Kathy Shertzer is the office manager of DuKate Fine Remodeling in Franklin, Ind.