Good morning, you lovely people!
I hope you all slept well. I certainly did, because Lil Spits has finally started sleeping through the night! YAHOO! I'm trying not to get my hopes up that this is permanent, but wow do I feel well rested and like I'll finally be able to punch life in the face!
Speaking of getting punched in the face, my Most Embarrassing Moment Contest is coming up (that was the closest I could get to a good lead in. Let this be known that I have never punched anyone in the face or been punched in the face). You have until THIS THURSDAY AT MIDNIGHT to send in your most embarrassing moments to me!
Official rules and details of the contest found here.
So far, I have five or six entries and they're real zingers, but I want more, please! I'll be posting the winner on Friday morning, along with all of the other embarrassing moments. Get 'em in quick, people!
Last week, I asked one of my best friends, Courtney, to write a guest post for my blog. Fun facts: I met her in Washington, DC when we were juniors in high school. We were Congressional Pages together, and she liked the way I cooked scrambled eggs. Fast forward a few years, we ended up getting married a month apart and had our first babies a week apart. The rest is history! She's an extremely talented writer, she's hilarious, and is a total babe.
|See? Told you she's a babe!|
So, without further ado, here's the main course!
"How to Make Homemaking Work: Living on One Income"
Living on one income can be challenging, but so BEYOND worth it! I get to be the one at home teaching him. I get to be the one to witness all of his “firsts.” I get to be the one whose arms he jumps into three billion times a day. I get to be the first one to hear and laugh at his silly jokes. So….how do we reasonably live on one income?
Being a SAHM is a sensitive decision that requires faith. Some families legitimately can’t survive on one income. Some women are better moms to their children if they work outside the home. There is no one right way to be a mom. If you and your husband feel right about you being a SAHM and have faith, then the Lord will provide. It’s more doable than people think it is.
Living on a budget is crucial! I’m feeling a little bit like a hypocrite because I looked at the budget sheet last night and realized that we overspent in a couple categories for this month already, BUT the point is I’m aware and tracking it so I can get back on track. The fact that there is a “track” to get back on is huge.
When budgeting, be sure to budget for tithing, fun, eating out, and savings. Tithing I’ll cover next. It’s important to budget for fun, because if you only budget for essentials you’ll be miserable and more likely to quit being financially responsible. You should budget for eating out, because not only is it a nice treat every once and a while, but also how realistic is it that you are going to feel like or be able to cook every single day of the year? It’s not realistic for me.
Building savings into a budget is critical. If you build it in as an expense like the electric bill for example, then you’ll tuck it away and save yourself from living paycheck to paycheck. That money will be there when you need it. We’ve definitely needed to rely on our emergency savings many times for surprise medical or car expenses that pop up unexpectedly.
Meal plan, shop sales, and stack coupons my friend. Most grocery stores have apps where you can load coupons onto your store card, which is super easy and convenient. Cooking meals at home is way less expensive than eating out and when you shop sales and use coupons to cut your grocery bill it’s a double win—more savings all around! Yay!
Giving 10% of your income back to God is a Biblical commandment. Living on one income, it might seem impractical to pay tithing, but there are so many blessings that come from giving back. It forces you to be aware of your money, which helps when it comes to budgeting. It helps you let go of material lusts and feel more gratitude for what you do have. If you’re paying tithing you’ll be happy that you have 10 pairs of shoes instead of bitter that you can’t afford the designer boots you’ve been pining for. Plus, if you do end up saving up money a few extra months for those designer boots you’ll appreciate them so much more than you would otherwise.
Commit to your decision! Some months are going to be tight. Some (A LOT of) days are going to be out-of-your-mind stressful. This morning, I sat at the breakfast table for two hours until my son was finally willing to eat his ONE pancake. And that’s pretty mild. Once I fell asleep on the couch and I woke up to find he pulled yogurt out of the trash and flung it every which way all over the kitchen floor, walls, table, and chairs.
If staying home is the right decision for you, then own it. Work to be and stay happy. Feel grateful that you have the opportunity to raise your children instead of jealous of what other people have. We’re human! We’re occasionally going to fall into the envy trap. When I think about what I really want I realize that, I want to be married and I want to have children. How fortunate am I that I have both those things in my life! My husband and my son are my best friends. I am so happy that I get to spend every day with them. I am in awe daily of how blessed I am to be able to live this life and thank my Heavenly Father for it every night before I go to bed.
We can live on one income because it’s our priority and we’re committed. So can you!
There you have it, from the mouth of a pro. I totally look up to her and her husband. They're so fun, adventurous, and wise and I hope to be like them when we finally grow up. Love you, Courtie! If you're interested in reading more of her tips, tricks, and insights, you can find them on her blog, Avonlea Way. It's fabulous!
Also, if you're interested in writing a guest post on my blog, please contact me! If you're thrifty, have some killer recipes, and/or have a great sense of humor, I'd love to have you!
And don't forget about the Most Embarrassing Moment Contest. I want to hear the nitty gritty!
Thanks for reading! See ya on the flip-flop!