When a person begins a month-long no shopping challenge, they are full of hope about growing their savings. It was day 1 of this challenge when that bubble popped. We had to take my husband’s work vehicle into the shop because his rather worn tire tread split.
Ok, safety issue: fixing that (they were scheduled to be replaced months ago…but you know how it can go). Oh yeah, and his vehicle also turned out to have an electrical issue with the lights, not just need some bulbs replaced.
When I got home from driving my neighbor to Target, the fire alarm was beeping. The week before I specifically asked if we had enough batteries…but, out of sight out of mind. We had no 9v batteries, so that was a safety issue and while technically I shopped for those and spent a whopping $4, I did not use credit and of course we always make exceptions to any self-imposed challenges for the sake our family’s safety. Anyhow, I bring all this up because I think it can be a valuable example that having some savings set aside for rainy days is definitely a must especially if you have a family.
On Nov. 2 while driving home from my son’s extracurricular activity with our daughter, my husband had to slam on the breaks to avoid hitting a vehicle that had illegally entered the intersection on a red light. Consequently the car behind him could not stop. My #1 praise for Novemeber is that my kids and husband were safe even though the van got rear-ended and isn’t fit for driving. My kids were a bit shaken and we talked about how having seatbelts fastened correctly and following the rules of the road as a driver is obviously really important! While they were waiting for the incident report with the police and witnesses as well as the driver behind them, which took a few hours, lemme tell you I got a whole lot of cleaning done because there was nothing else I could do while I waited for them to get home! (Our other vehicle was still in the shop or I would have swooped up my birdies and brought them home to our nest!).
I noticed with amazement that although this is a lot happening, our family is really not as over-the-top stressed like we would have been last year and previous years. I am thankful God has provided avenues for our family to function better through health and mindset improvements and the kids’ OT, etc. Another small thing to mention that I’m grateful for is that the rental van we were able to get through insurance has heated seats and steering wheel and this morning was frosty! It’s the little things sometimes.
Sometimes when inconvenient things like these happen, it can be easier to say “Let’s go to Starbucks and treat ourselves! We’ve been through a lot!” But nope, sticking to the challenge despite the unexpected things. Meal planning despite the desire to just go out. Restaurants don’t actually soothe like we think they will, and a therapy shopping session really just provides more tension of clutter and eating into savings (or possibly causing debt depending the situation).
Two words I’m going to keep repeating this November no matter the challenges that may keep coming: Thankfulness and Intentionality. (And thank YOU for intentionally spending time reading this!)