Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Tightening the purse strings.

This has been a big year for me and the Smith family, I'll expound on that in a later post, but one of the biggest occasions has been booking the Smith's 2017 trip to Europe. I was born in Heidelberg, Germany (my parents were stationed there at the time), in 1978, and I have never had the chance to return to my birthplace but that is going to change. We head abroad at the end of May, for a "quick" trip and I am beyond thrilled.
As you can imagine, the trip has been a very frequent topic of discourse in our household. For months now we've been discussing itineraries, flight schedules, passports, & rental cars. I have selected all the cities and sites (Disneyland Paris & the Neuschwanstein Castle made the list, of course) that are mandatory stops on my thirty-eight year old, Trip of a Lifetime; Tarzan is just happy to come along, he makes planning a trip such a breeze. Cheetah has added Rome, Italy, as his must see city on our European trek, and continuously adds new venues to our expedition through Europe.

Due to the hefty price tag that comes along with a trip overseas, we've been tightening the purse strings at the Treehouse. We've instituted meatless meals, elemenated eating out, greatly reduced our outside entertainment budget, and have begun keeping each other in check on our frivolous spending.

I began asking myself, "Do I need/want this? Would I rather _____ while in Germany or France?" - each time I consider purchasing new clothes or shoes. I have also been prompting Tarzan when he is contemplating a purchase and Cheetah when he is requesting a new toy or game, with the same round of questions and have found this practice to be the most helpful; until recently. I believe that I may need to create a different method to remind the family, The Boy especially, as to why we're currently sacrificing our wants for a future time and location:

One day as I reviewed the weekly grocery run with The Boy, we were both adding our lunch & dinner items when I mentioned needing to add tampons to the list. Without skipping a beat, Cheetah demanded, "Do you really need tampons, or can you wait to get tampons in France?"

It took several minutes for me to reign in the snorting and tear shedding laughter but I was able to smile lovingly at him and counter, "Yes my dear, I am sure that I need the tampons now. I may even need tampons while in France, too."

It can be tough on a frugal mom, check out this link for a little comedy relief.

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