So yesterday, I don’t remember how the conversation turned to the $5 left in my wallet, but nevertheless it did and my husband turned to me and said, “Are we really that bad off right now?”
I was kind of hoping he’d ask and not the least bit surprised, so I was pleased that it gave me a chance to explain to him that no, it’s not that, I’m just trying to be strict with the money because otherwise a little extra here and a little leeway there turns into this big snowball effect and I end up not managing our money wisely.
We spoke a bit more, about ways to save, his first inkling being to take a part-time job on the weekends, and I tried to reiterate that that isn’t the point — the point is to do better with what we have, to continue spending time together as a family and to communicate more about these issues. I want him to feel included. I appreciate his input. I can’t take all the responsibility by myself sometimes, nor do I want to.
It was refreshing and reassuring, and tomorrow being the start of the month makes the timing all the more essential.
One of the examples I gave him about saving not having to be sacrificing was this want I had for a dry-erase calendar (with room for notes) to hang on the fridge. I have about three calendars going at all times, which may not be very efficient, but I don’t like to mix work and play, and I don’t really think tacking my bills up on the fridge with magnets will do the trick either. So this one had to be for things like errands I need to run when, cleaning chores I need to do by day/week, reminders to hit the ATM on Thursdays for the nanny, etc. There’s one style on there I particularly like, so I printed one out for August and hit the ground running. Change doesn’t have to feel like sacrifice, I told the husband. You can’t get nervous or tense just because we ran out of puffs for the baby and he’s turning his nose up at bananas but we have no strawberries right now. He’s not starving! We’re fine! We just need to stop overspending, and perhaps a little of my enthusiasm can rub off on him so that we’re both enjoying finding creative ways to save AND spend more time together, appreciating what we have instead of feeling the lack of something we don’t.
By the same token, I was determined to show the family that our meager fridge remnants didn’t mean a sad, sorry dinner! With half a dozen eggs, two sweet potatoes and some thyme from my pathetic salmon cakes, I made a delicious frittata, which we enjoyed with some organic local Lacinato kale chips and a glass of red wine. Although for some reason the baby didn’t even want to try the sweet potatoes, we enjoyed it thoroughly and there’s even a quarter left over for lunch today. I have plans for tomorrow already in terms of picking up what I need at a discount (allergy medicine and coffee, for one), and altogether these advances make me feel like things are looking up.
Happy Sunday! Hope your weekend wraps up nicely.