Monthly Archives: November 2013

I mentioned last time that I’ve started a second job, and I believe I told you it was the best job in the world.

It is.

I get to spend my mornings hanging out with this little stud, and he’s awesome.

Did you see those dimples? Swoon. It is legitimately difficult to tell him goodbye when he smiles like that.

One thing this job means, though, is that four days a week I am working with that adorable bundle of awesomeness for five hours, then going to my regular job where I hang out with more kids, for a grand total of 15 hours out of the house. Working that much requires a lot of preparation. My off days now HAVE to involve cleaning the house, running any necessary errands, laundry, and all that stuff I would rather pretend didn’t exist. I’ve told you how I don’t buy any fast food (or any food/drinks) out and about. Well, I now pack breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks in advance on Sunday. I also pick out my outfits and have them ready to go for the week. If that’s normal for you, I stand in awe of your amazing organization. It is not normal for me, but I am doing it. Every time I do, I feel like I deserve a gold medal. Seriously, where’s my medal?

Can this schedule be really tiring? Heck yes. However, so is being a mom 24 hours a day, and I like to think of this these few months as my ultra training for motherhood. I should be magnificent by the time I have my own little ones, right? That’s what I tell myself. Don’t correct me.

I have forgotten my Dr.Pepper pick-me-up once though, and that was a loooong day. I’ve also forgotten salad dressing and had a really disappointing dinner of mostly spinach. I’ve left my breakfast sitting on the counter twice. I’m not perfect, but I’m trying!

The hardest part of the Spending Freeze the whole time has been deciding what is a need and what is a want. Sometimes I get it wrong, like when I felt I should buy the $15 bottle of shampoo over the $3 one. Sometimes it’s hard to convince yourself to stick to the principles of not buying drinks at a gas station when you work a 15 hour day and forgot your Dr.Pepper at home. And then sometimes you have the time to drive to Pensacola for an important night in a friend’s life, and you decide to go because it will be relatively cheap, the only “vacation” you’ve had all year, and fun. Maybe it shouldn’t be considered a need, but you do it anyway. You don’t regret it. You have a blast, and you get a picture of your best tourist self:

So that trip ate into my September savings a little, but I do not regret that decision. It was so much fun.

I’ve been asking people for help on how to reign in my spending even more, and my darling sister told me I should limit my shower time. Standing in a hot shower, especially on a cold morning, is one of life’s little luxuries that I do not take for granted. I appreciate it daily by standing in the shower for as long as possible. My cue to get out of the shower is when the hot water starts to run out. I’m only partially exaggerating.

I looked it up, and (according to a site with absolutely no scientific credibility) the average American showers for 7.5 minutes. I started recording my shower times, and my average for the week was 7min 8s. Logan beat me easily with an average of 5min 16s. My goal now is to get my showers down to 5 minutes and beat Logan. Competition makes torturing myself with shorter showers almost worth it. Almost.

I’m also looking into getting one of those blankets for the hot water heater to save on the electric bill. I need to figure out if there’s a way to turn down the temperature on that thing, too. I would be more enthusiastic about these tasks if the laundry room didn’t have a cave cricket infestation. It’s a terrifying place, people. Do you know what cave crickets are? Demon crickets. Jiminy Cricket’s evil twin. I would post a picture here to educate you, but frankly I don’t want to creep myself out by googling their image. I’ll let you do that yourself.

We also need to take the time asap to winterize this ancient house. Have you ever put that cling wrap stuff on windows? I have not, but I’ll be learning soon. Anything else we should be doing to save money?

I’m going to go ahead and make a little holiday announcement: please, please, please, PLEASE, do not get me a birthday/Christmas gift. I would love to hang out with you! I’d love to drink hot chocolate with you in my living room. I’d love to go on a walk with you. We could drive around and look at Christmas lights! If you’re far away, write me a letter! Call me! Can we pretty please make a little quality time our gifts to each other instead? Definitely for this year, and perhaps every year? I assure you, one thing I have learned this year is that I have everything I need.

Now for the savings!
In September, which included a quick trip to Florida, I managed to save: $522
And in October: $838

Even more exciting than the savings, I finally have a plane ticket!
I leave for Kenya on January 20th for six weeks.

Wish me luck!
And if you’re feeling generous, help me get there! That would be way better than any gift.