So much with so little…direction that is.

I feel like I have so much to write about and yet I’m struggling to prioritize my thoughts. I’ll begin with a bit of a teaser, I am really taking on the holidays with full-frugality in mind. So much so, that I am actually attending a brown bag work luncheon titled “Spending and Saving This Holiday Season” needless to say, stay tuned. I will be sure to post shortly thereafter. This year is actually the first year I haven’t started holiday shopping. Yikes. I usually start in September/October and tend to be finished by Dec. 1. Not this year though, this year is about creativity and budget, budget, budget. I have some great ideas for gifts that I can’t post just yet, because many of these recipients are my beloved followers; but I am really excited about them and cannot wait to share everything.

In other news, we have put all of our moving costs behind us (knock on wood) and have buckled down for the month of November. It’s always an interesting transition or so we were told, little did we know until we went through it how many little surprises came along with the investment. I digress, although I don’t know what lies ahead I’m pleased to say we were able to pay what needed to be paid and on time. Groceries for this month will be interesting but another reason to stay detail oriented about each purchase.

November Challenge: To not exceed our max grocery budget of $300 this includes a traditional Thanksgiving dinner for 6.

To follow-up on a past post, I have not forgotten about my bucket list. In fact I have been thinking a lot about it. The truth is, I’ve never given as much thought to having one before and am learning quite a bit about myself in the meantime. This is something else I would like to post on as it’s own when it’s complete; but for now I will simply say that the most revealing self-reflection I have had lately is how little some of the more streamlined “big bucket items” mean to me. Seriously, no one reading here is surprised that I’m not going to risk jumping out of an airplane however even I thought I might have a risky bone somewhere but alas not so much. I could careless about even a ferris wheel. Instead so far I have come up with things such as finding a 4 leaf clover, having a bonfire on the beach and getting my doctorate…

And there it is, the next big subject of grown-up conversation at the Fowler Farm these days. Baby or degree, what will it be? We can’t afford either and they both come with a long-term commitment. They both require sacrifice to/for the family; in time, sleep, money, the list goes on; but even superwoman isn’t crazy enough to do both. Brent and I have gone back and forth about it and discussed it at great lengths with no final decision. The timing of the program I’m interested in is perfect but I’m terrified. I haven’t been a student for a long time and I’m beyond intimidated. As for the baby our family is beautiful just as it is. I clearly remember “not ever wanting to do this again.” lol but I also know that pregnancy is familiar territory and when our girls are grown I will have wished we had more- not in the sense to have babies after babies. It’s not about the little life in our house constantly, although this is precious, but rather in the sense that they have each other as they are older. If I have learned anything this year it’s been how much I need my sisters. And I love the idea of big family gatherings with tons of grandchildren (talk about a prime bucket list item). However, the flip side to all of this is our “unit” works really well the way it is; and we love our sleep. We are almost all the way out of diaper duty (no pun intended) and the savings is starting to climb. No more baby food, no more diapers and in less than a year we will save 50% in childcare costs because Madz starts school. If I begin a doctoral program I’m committed, by choice. The university will pay for it but it will take up to 6 years on their dime perhaps longer, talk about daunting. I realize I am young and could always go back and do both but that’s not for me or for our family. I’m a big proponent of timing and I think I know where this whole thing is going but it’s terrifying and exciting all at once and most importantly once the final choice is made we are certain, for us, it’ll be a final one. Oh and did I mention the cloud of conversation hanging over my head? It was the last father’s day I spent with my Dad in 2012, he looked at me and said, “you need to have another, at least try to give Brent a boy.” Thanks, Dad. Talk about pressure. I will say, that while this cloud is there I’m pretty certain Brent was meant to have all girls so it’s almost a moot point. We have our hands full. Regardless we have some tough decisions to make.

At the end of this post I was hoping to have some clarity, no such luck. I still lack direction and feel pretty scattered I can’t imagine trying to follow along lol. If you’re still reading, my apologies for the winding road of thought you just traveled. I promise to close the loop over time.

As always, stay tuned. ox

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