Thursday, January 31, 2013

Looking Back at January and Forward to February

Day 28: Blackened Chicken with Cuban Black Beans and Rice, Corn and Bread. I thought it was delicious and Tim just thought it was okay (first time that's ever happened!). His taste buds must be impaired from the sickness. Just kidding... sorta.

I also took the opportunity to clean the fridge while it was low. This was a few days ago; it's even barer now!

We did it. We reached the end of our Four Weeks of Frugality and lived to tell the story. What started as a conversation in December ("Dude, we gotta save money") has been a wonderful success. But I have a confession: I'm not sure how much money we saved. I mean, there is definitely more in our bank account right now than there was at the beginning of the month but we don't have a set budget (yet! Stop yelling at me!) to see exactly how much we didn't spend. But, we did realize some pretty awesome things:

1. You don't need everything you want.

I know, this is a no-brainer. But really, we want so many things in life. I've been amazing by how hard it was to not go to McDonald's and get a Diet Coke or not buy a York mint at the checkout counter.

2. It's okay to deprive yourself now and then. It won't kill you or your family.
In fact, it might even bring you closer together.

The story is often told of Helen Hayes Brown (an American theatre actress) and her husband entitled "I wish they were peanuts". Read the sweet paragraph here. Going without is okay.

3. We are very richly blessed.

Self-explanatory really. We have so much to be thankful for. God has blessed us with jobs, money, food, friends, and love. What more do you need?

4. We can get really creative if we have to.

It was such a fun challenge to make dinner each night using just what we had on hand. I got very resourceful and made some fun (and sometimes interesting) meals. But we never went hungry and we didn't even have to eat the Ramen noodles in the pantry that have rat marks in them (why are we saving those?). We also got very creative on the Sewing Room, determined not to spend a penny. Leftover paint, donated furniture, and some clever decorating is turning into such a cute room! Just a few more finishing touches and we can have a Sewing Room reveal. YAY!

In conclusion, January was awesome. No, we didn't do it perfectly because we bought dog food and had to buy gas. But I'm choosing to remember the bright side. We worked towards a goal to save money and did it. Together. And that's something worth celebrating. 

What's next? Glad you asked!

Faith and Fitness February!

Yup, February is the time to whip out bodies and souls into shape. Rules are as follows:

  1. Attend the gym 5 times a week (or some outdoor activity such as running).
  2. Devotions every night together (28 days).
  3. One "Date Night" each week using the curriculum we got at our Premarital weekend at WinShape. (Yes, we haven't done our "homework" yet that we got 8 months ago. We're just so perfect that we don't need help. HA. Just kidding.)
I'm looking forward to this! (Well, maybe not to going to the gym...)

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