Living the Simple Life- Not Starting Out So Simple

     Inspired by several people close to me, I have started a process to make my life more simple and therefore, better.  Living in the busy chaos of life in these times seems to be unfulfilling at times.  So, maybe by going back to the way things used to be before my time- simple and focused- I can become more focused on the things I enjoy and have more time to spend with those I love.

     The first goal I had was to create a better budget system.  I used to do the envelope thing and I lovrd it.  Pretty much, at each payday, money gets put in each envelope which is designated for a certain thing- groceries, gas, entertainment, etc.- and then, when it’s gone for the week, it’s gone.  I loved this system because after the initial planning and aside from the weekly “stuffing the envelopes”, there is no thnking involved.  I know how much was spent or not spent and I know where the money goes each week.  Unfortunately, my dh didn’t really get into this system when I tried it after we got married.  But, thanks to his friends recommending it to him and the book by Dave Ramsey, My Total Money Makeover, we are trying it again.  This is week one.  We started Friday with my paycheck and the begining of the month.  it seemed to be the perfect time.  The only problem was my dh was having pizza cravings and cheap pizza just wouldn’t do.  So, $30 later, he had pizza- from a place he loves and I don’t like- and our envelopes were already off.  Trying to relax and understand this is going to be a hard thing to get used to, I wasn’t very successful at.  But, by later that evening, I had refigured the weekly envelopes to add up.  We’ll see how the rest of the week goes!

I just spent $20 on groceries for the week- $10 less than our budget due to the pizza.  When I make out a menu and really plan the list, I’m amazed that I can have well balanced, good meals every day for very little money.  When I don’t plan ahead, it’s amazing how much I spend on the junk I end up buying!  This week we are having chicken in the crock pot, burritos, spaghetti, pot pies, and taco bake casserole. 

The next project for the day is what I am sitting here writing to procrastinate for.  My cousing had the idea to eliminate so much laundry and clutter by limiting the amount of clothing for everyone in the house.  I am not that brave since I have to go to work every day and need to wear different clothes.  Also, I am not worried about the amount of laundry I contribute.  My son on the other hand has two very bad habits.  The first is that he would rather put clean clothes back in the laundry than folding them and putting them away.  This is one of my biggest pet peaves!  The second is that whenever he gets something out to wear, he gets every single thing out of his drawers!  I mean everything!  And, then it all gets thrown in a pile on the floor where it stays until we have to yell at him to clean his room.  So, by giving him only a fewn options of clothing, there will be a smaller pile on his floor and he will be forced to put it away or else have nothing to wear!  I am hoping this works!

My other project for the day is to update my son’s school work.  Usually this time of year, I am not in charge of his school.  But, due to my dh having heart surgery, he has not been keepng up with it.  So, today I am going to make sure things are on track and plan for this week of school.  It will be a review week- which we have periodically to make sure he is retaining the information.  Also, at the begining of the year I created our book of goals for the year and I really need to start checking them off.  I know some of them have been accomplished and others should have been accomplished and I really need to regain my focus on his studies.  Pretty soon, it will be springtime and school will not be as easy then- too many distractions!

Focusing on taking better care of myself is on the list.  But, as most of you mom’s know, it usually doesn’t ever make it to the top of the list.  I hear people always saying you should take time out for yourself.  But, what do I take that time out of?  I get up and go to work early.  No high maintenance or prep time for me, it’s usually the get up and go look.  So, doing anything in the morning only takes time out of sleeping.  Does that sound like a good idea?  I’m thinking no.  But, then there’s the evening when I get home.  Ok.  I admit it.  I’m lucky to get dinner made before I colapse for the night!  But, I guess that seems to be my only option.  But, it just seems that since I come home so tired, I am setting myself up to fail by planning to excercise then.  But, I’ll keep you posted.   

I had thought several weeks ago about having weekly goals to accomplish.  Two weeks ago, they were to eat at the table more and to play games more as a family- or at least with my son.  I’m making an effort on both of these but fell a little short this week and didn’t make any new ones for last week.  This upcoming week here are my goals.  Although they sound easy, sometimes, they are not easy in my world.

Goal 1- excercise 3 times this week

Goal 2- keep up with schoolwork checking

Goal 3- continue the first goals- dinner time 3 times a week and game time at least once

So, I believe these are all good things- things to make life easier.  But, getting them started- making myself do them- sometimes seems to be a hurdle I’m not too sure about!  

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3 Comments on “Living the Simple Life- Not Starting Out So Simple”

  1. YFS Says:

    You go Girl!

  2. YFS Says:

    Sorry, I just had to get the cheerleading out of the way. Now, here’s a smattering of random comments:
    1. It’s not everyday I get to use the word, “smattering,” thanks for the excuse.
    2. If you have trouble getting DH to go along with the envelopes system, there is an online version- mvelopes- I think it’s called. Maybe adding the “high tech” edge will get him on board, knowing how he loves computer-y things. To me, it kinda defeats the purpose and complicates the beauty of a simple system, but some people just won’t believe that something will work of it’s not complicated.
    3. Please tell me how you get away with only spending $20 on groceries for the week! I know we are a family of 5, but you have a teenage son, so I figure that it more than evens out. How do you do it?
    4. I still want the Taco Bake Casserole recipe. Pleeeaasse…
    5. Good for you for going through and eliminating Ds’s clothes. When my butt is in gear, I do a modified version of that here- only bringing up enough laundry for a few days or the week. It doesn’t really diminish the amount of laundry we do, but it does eliminate the excess amount of clothes in the kids room.
    6. Kudos for getting school stuff back on track. I need to do the same thing in my classroom, but things keep coming up. Now I feel like the hurrieder I go, the behinder I get.
    7. Good for you- making it a goal to take better care of yourself. I agree, it’s hard to find time to fit exercise in and it’s definitely not worth giving up sleep for in my book (or maybe it is, but it’s definitely not going to happen!). The massive quantities of snow have put a damper on my newly developed exercise habit, but I’m determined to start up again as soon as it’s possible to walk in snow that doesn’t reach halfway to my knees.
    8. All of your goals are good, but there’s something about the word “all”. It sounds like a lot. If it’s hard to meet all the goals, start small with adding one thing each week. Than again, you enjoy a challenge.

    Well, I know you like the number 8 and it’s late and I should get to sleep, even though I’m not really tired (thanks to some lunchtime Excedrin). So, I’ll stop for now. Keep writing!
    <3, Your Favorite Sister

  3. Sam Says:

    This was really good.


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