Monday, September 29, 2008

Money Monday

Snaps, A$!!!

If you want to spend less money, make home the main event.

If you are a stay at home mom, and many of you are, you might (as we all do) take trips to get out of the house, to do some retail therapy, to just NOT be at home! You know what I mean.

Hey, I'm all for it, I'm the queen of those trips, but, it's really spectacular to enjoy being out for the being out part- to be at the park, to enjoy the library, or free museums, or to visit friends, or to do something helpful for someone else.

We will do ourselves, our husbands, and our children, and our bank accounts a great blessing if we stop thinking going out has to be about shopping and eating and other forms of expense.

Go out all you want, be involved, have fun! Spend money when it's a good thing! But if those trips out usually add up to extra meals from a restaurant, little coffees you didn't really need and aren't even that special (Like, if you have more than your share in a week and they're more a regular occurrence than a special treat- Only you can decide that limit for yourself...but I think I'm makin' sense here.), or little (and big!) purchases on clothes and other things you didn't plan on or actually need... Not to mention if being out and about too much is taxing your gas budget.

We might make excuses- I know I do!!- that we "had" to eat out, we "had" to get the extra ___. I'll be honest. I've lied to myself about those things many times, and I've also failed to plan. Of course many times random life happens, you run late, whatever. But, many times, we could have planned ahead and brought some PBJs, bananas and a Nalgene bottle. We did not have to eat out. And we still did. And there have been times I've really regretted it.

It's wonderful to enjoy the world outside of the retail walls. And if you build a lifestyle of being out to enjoy what's out there, to be with and bless others, your family will thrive. I want my kids to be adults that have habits that help them thrive! Our children can be saved from building the mentality that spending is the rule when you're out and about.

There are so many ways to have fun for free. And growing a family that lives this and knows it deep down is an incredible thing.

Not to mention, how wonderful home is.

Do little things to make your home special. Think and dream about what you love about your home and what you'd like to see evolve into something better than it's been.

Make a point to make the every day extraordinary.

Love that home, and love that family in it. What blesses them? I bet it's free things anyway- but see how you can make a point to make your home a fun, exciting, life-giving, blessed place to be. And see if you and your kids like being there just a little more. See if you irritate each other a little less.

Make it your haven, your family's place to be fed so the world outside is a place to be enjoyed and to make a difference in- not the place we go to seek out false happiness in things or events or stuff.

Make a point to bring blessed little things into your day, your husband's day, your child's. Little things mean so much, they center us, they give good focus on what's important, and they keep us from wanting to wander elsewhere for things to fill us.

Mama, you are the one that decides your home's atmosphere, and you know the things you can do to make your home an incredible place. You know your family better than anyone! You know what lights their fire.

Make every day at home an event.

So, go make yourself some tea and drink it in a beautiful cup and just enjoy it. Or do whatever you do that you do so well and and enjoy that. Tea is optional. And dream about "home" a bit.

If there's not so much haven at your nest, take heart! Tiny changes, one at a time, are the biggest things we can do.

A night with my husband in our little living room and a book to read is more fulfilling than anything Target has to offer me.

You'd better bet that saves us some money.


Anonymous said...

You are such an inspiration! This is really true and I've lately found myself falling into the retail therapy trap. Your pictures and posts prove that normal people can have a beautiful home in every way!

anne said...

amen Megan!
Something I definately need to practice, and since I haven't had a car for about a month since the accident, it has been easier because I don't have a choice! I think Justin is considering not buying a new car!!!!
The truth is though I absolutely loathe doing errands or even "fun" shop when Justin is home. I just want to be with him. Our first few years of marriage we had it good because we were both in school and even when I was working full time and he was in Grad. school we saw each other a lot more than now (plus we didn't have 2...almost 3) kids.
ANYWAY, good post, so true. THanks!!!
ps- LOVE the mug :)

A Crafty Mom said...

Perfect timing for this post, Megan. I've been in a bit of a rut lately and have fallen back into this habit - getting out and spending money without thinking about it. I think I should print this out and post it on my fridge :-) Thanks for the words of wisdom, so true they are.

Anne Elizabeth said...

Great post and EXACTLY what I needed to read this morning:)

Jenn Boerger said...

Thanks for the reminders! I really needed this - last week Olivia and I ran errands after the kids were picked up, and I shopped and regreted some of my purchases. I couldn't believe what I'd spent, so this weekend I took some things back (the ones I really didn't need), and asked for a price adjustment on my other purchases - turned out they were an extra 10% off during the weekend, so I got a couple dollars back! Looking back, it was all really a waste of time, and I need to remember that for the future!! Thanks for keeping us focused!

Kiki said...

So true. We have a gym membership for part of this reason too. The kids love the child care area and I get to show them that exercise is an important part of life. And we all get a little break from each other and every mom knows that can help us all!

Cora said...

Love this post! Thanks.

The Mrs. said...

mega dittos my friend!

The kids and I go up and walk the paved trails near the river a couple times a week and almost daily we are at the library. Little trips help to break up the day, especially when dad is away, but they most certainly do not have to add up.

kelly said...

This is so what I try to live by. Emphasis on the try. LOL!