… not that anybody missed me. Ha ha. I mostly maintain this blog as a journal rather than a way to connect with the world, but I still appreciate my readers and love your feedback!
So, wow, it’s been 4 months since I wrote on this particular blog. I decided I needed to take a hiautus from my travel blog (TheTravellingTurtle) since our financial situation has changed and our travels will be limited. So that brings up the latest topic I’ve been thinking about – can budget cuts improve our health?
That probably seems a little contradictory since a lot of the poor in our country live on fast food and cheap grocery-store junk, but when faced with a drastic 60% decrease in household income, we had to make some major adjustments. Some of the first things to go were restaurant dinners, take-out lunches, and indulgences from the vending machine or nearby eateries. It is no longer a matter of going out because we don’t feel like preparing food at home – we can’t afford it! We have always been pretty health conscious, are faithful gym-goers, and usually made good choices at the grocery store, but we both have a major sweet tooth and had been struggling with a few pudge pounds since college that just wouldn’t budge. When we started analyzing our budget a few months ago, we had no idea how much money were spending (or calories consuming) on eating out! We immediately started getting creative with food. Preparing enough lunches every Sunday to last the whole week, …, and making breakfast and dinners at home a special time to enjoy our food and talk about our days. I also made room in our small yard for a garden over the summer and planted tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, peppers, spinach, and a few herbs. I had never been more excited to eat vegetables!
We probably over-spent a little bit on Christmas (taking advantage of dual-income for one more month!) but we are both aware of the changes coming in January, and strangely, I’m excited. As we’ve been cutting back more and more, we’ve come to realize that our life is so much most pleasant without being weighed down by the things that money buys – bigger house (more to clean and maintain), nicer clothes (more to dry clean and stress when it gets messed up!), endless entertainment (less relax time), and just more stuff in general (more to clutter up the house). Plus, I’ve come to realize that all the fancy stuff in the world won’t alter my self worth… that must come from within.
Six months ago I was very freaked out about the prospect of going back to one income. I suppose it was my fear of returning to our broke college days and barely making ends meet, but we have come to realize that a lot has changed since then and we’re better prepared now for living life with whatever means we are afforded. I look forward to the next stage!