This is the story of days 1 and 2.
My first step on the road to domestic bliss is getting all things financial in order. My initial thought? Anyone out there looking to off load some unused inheritance, I AM HERRRERE!!!! No takers?? None?? Nada?? Ok fine, off we go.
I start by setting a budget for next month. I find this nifty online tool that calculates everything for you, shows what % of your money goes to which category (household, lifestyle, debt), and generally makes things “easy” and “painless.” Easy?? Painless?? I call bullshit!! By the time I’m done plugging in bills, income, and savings (ha!), I am in the floor, lamenting all things budgetary. I mentally run right back to our freewheeling, loosey-goosey lifestyle. I mean, we pay our bills! We eat! What’s the harm in just staying in our structureless nirvana?
I live in my carefree fantasy just long enough to hear an ominous crash from the living room. My bubble is burst, and in floods all the reasons why I’m attempting this (in my mind) crazy change. The kids. The husband. The house of our own to destroy. So I grudgingly go back to the budget, decide that it’s as good as it’s going to get for month 1 ($249 overspent), and tackle my next obstacle: menu planning.
Waking up from my hard-cider-and-Pinterest induced coma, I am greeted by my unfinished menu plan and grocery list taunting me from the coffee table. You see, I am not a list person. And remember that core principle from the backstory? I. Hate. Cooking. So I hesitate to remember why I was writing these things in the first place. Then it all comes crashing back with the force of the destruction from yesterday. The kids. The future. The budgetary despair.
So I spend a few hours tearing out my hair whilst picking dinners for the week and compiling a complementary grocery list. I finish (FINALLY!) and realize not a single dinner is something I have ever made before. But I’m nothing if not ambitious, so I soldier on, figuring “what the hell? Balls to the wall right?!” I scoop up the 3 year old and off we go.
Remember me? Not a cooking person? Not a list person? I am also NOT a grocery store person. I hate buying the food almost as much as I hate cooking it. Nonetheless, I enter the store with my first ever list and a whole lot of apprehension. Shopping takes longer than usual as I’m buying things I never have before (chicken thighs, fresh cilantro, soy sauce) and I’m calculating things as I go (not mentally but constantly unlocking my phone to plug in numbers.) *Here I must pause and remind you that this is a judgement free zone. I will not judge you, so please don’t judge me. 🙂
I imagine how I look as I intensly debate the cost of white onion v. red onion with my rapt 3 year old, my ponytail loose and falling from the sheer stress of it all. Luckily, I have mastered pulling off the IDGAF vibe, so we power on. I blow the budget, but comfort myself with the idea that a lot of the items are new “staples” and won’t have to be purchased again for months. We make it out, and I am EXHAUSTED. My one shining moment from the day: I cross the last item off the list and realize I get to skip all four of the frozen food aisles. I smile for the world to see, knowing I must have done something right in all this business.
And my final thoughts on Day 2?
THANK GOD today is Sunday, which equals family dinner night over at my parents house (and no cooking for me!!!)
In case anyone was wondering, this is what J looks like after mommy takes 15 minutes to post a blog.