To Be Continued…

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Months and months ago I had read about Kate Spade New York’s new book “Things We Love” in a magazine and put it on my wish list at the Library.  It came in last week and I spent an hour reading the pages and ogling over the amazing pictures and colors.  The spread above was my favorite—it almost seemed to emit real light off the page.  Happiness in 2D!

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I hesitated to even check out the book once I was notified that it had arrived as we were finishing up our spending fast and there’s nothing like hundreds of pages of Kate Spade inspiration to make it hard to leave your credit card stashed away.  Luckily I also had this beauty waiting…..Living More With Less.  Maybe they cancelled each other out?!

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In the 28 days since beginning our spending fast, I have slowly begun to realize a few things.  First, I have found that the spending fast has been more about a change of mind-set rather than a huge savings account boost.  I know we have saved money in comparison to months prior, however, it will take some analysis to figure out just how much.  We saved a lot by not going out to eat, but often counteracted that by splurging on some special treats at Trader Joes.  Second, I think I have baked and cooked my way through our days more than usual.  Food is comforting and I often found that spending time in the kitchen creating baked goods to share allowed us to enjoy meals and coffee with friends and family without spending excess money.  We went to the Oakland Zoo yesterday (using passes we had purchased on Groupon back in January), but it was so much easier to pack food to share for lunch and enjoy a picnic.  Bringing our own food meant no lines and no need to pay “extra” for basics we had purchased previously for much less.  It requires thinking ahead and taking time to plan and pack, but it meant more time to enjoy a “meal” together once we were with our friends.    {sidenote:  enjoying a meal in a relaxed fashion is a bit of a stretch with young kids in tow, but we were as leisurely as “possible”!}.  Finally, I think the spending fast has helped us hunker down and spend more time at home together.  We aren’t jetting off to meals and events out as much, but rather, find ourselves in gargantuan LEGO building sessions, cookie baking marathons or reading library books together.  Maybe the fact that Matt and I were laid up with the worst cold/flu ever for 10+ days kept us home a bit more too!

 

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As the end of February approached, though, I sensed that we were not quite done.  It almost felt like we were pushing a rock up a steep hill and we could see the peak up ahead, knowing smooth rolling was not far off.  “Smooth rolling” meant we could “let out our breath”—buy the shampoo, conditioner, make-up and odds and ends we “needed”.  It meant a no-guilt pedicure, eyebrow wax or new pants purchase for eldest.  The end of the fast signaled that we could splurge on a dinner  at In and Out or buying Easter treats from the dollar bins at Target.  And frankly, it just seemed too easy.  It was like holding your breath through a tunnel and finally gasping after 45 seconds as you emerged on the other side.  We would not buy, not buy, not buy and then….SPLURGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, we are pushing on for another 31 days, through Lent.  We have to make a few concessions, and we won’t be legalistic about the process.  But I love how pushing on again means getting creative.  Digging our my neatly organized, never used samples…..

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It was an excuse to purge and re-organize our hall, medicine cabinet.  I found SO many things I forgot we have and 2 garbage bags full of things we didn’t need or which were outdated/expired.

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The continuation of the fast meant a poorly done pedicure by myself….

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Continuing the fast signaled more free zoo/museum trips with friends {super fun perk!}

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Squeezing out the last remnants of my foundation {and maybe going without for a few weeks….don’t look too close mid-March!} is a more challenging side effect.

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So….more learning to come.  More saying “no” to Drew’s pleas for French Fries.  More of mom’s pizza and dinners that are “NEVER AS GOOD AS ‘Going Out’ PIZZA!!!”  Consuming has its backlash, though.  And even though saying no is hard, I am seeing some of the “pay off” too.

Bear with us as we press on a few more weeks and continue to share our experiences with you.  And luckily, Alex hasn’t quite connected that March arrived and we still are on our fast.  We’ll see if he makes the connection before Easter!

One thought on “To Be Continued…

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