Thursday, February 28, 2013

The end of the road

Day 28

Well,  the end of one road anyway.   Today marks the 28th and final day of Free February.  All of a sudden my palms feel itchy ;) 
While I'm glad to have the "restriction" lifted I really don't expect tomorrow to feel that
different, which I guess is a good sign.  How does the saying go, 21 days to make or break a habit.   Certainly it's rediculous to think I could do this forever,  and one lunch out every now and then isn't going to kill anyone but the message has certainly hit home that I had slipped down that slippery slope known as retched excess!
Maybe I'll keep this in my back pocket and pull it out every once and a while, sort of my own version of juicing,  when I need a financial reset.  For now though I'm going to sit back, relax and  stare at my bank balance... while sipping a Starbucks of course ;)

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Devil DOES NOT Wear a Red Dress...

He wears chocolate glaze and rainbow sprinkles...

This was my greeting this morning at work.   Tuesdays we have a weekly breakfast meeting.   My enemy does not appear every week but naturally he shows his soft doughy head at the first meeting since I began my Paleo challenge for lent.  Grrrrr.   I didn't always have this weird affection for donuts.  Perhaps because I grew up in a small town whose closest Krispy Kreme was a half hour away (trust me they just don't have the same effect when you buy them at the grocery).  There is no comparison between a KK when that Hot and Now light is on and nuking one to try and recapture that goodness (but 7 seconds is your number if you'd like to try-trust me on this,  I clearly have donut issues).
Regardless, I managed to stay strong, but it wasn't without a few second thoughts...and a little drool.  I know these first few weeks are the hardest.
Would you look at that.   I just wrote an entire post about donuts.   Oy!  Did I change the world today,  probably not,  but that 7 sec. trick might come close ;)

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Reality Check

We all experience moments when we feel our mortality more acutely than others, today was one of those moments for me. I attended a funeral today. Like most, it was both beautiful and raw, a mix of laughter and tears but unlike every other funeral I have attended in the past decade this was a memorial to a life lived long and a life lived well, as evidenced by the 4 long church pews reserved for and filled by immediate family. In these moments, when you hear the life of another recounted through the love of those they left behind, it’s hard not to ask yourself what your legacy will look like. What will be said about you when you are gone? Are you living a life in the here and now that will tell your story completely when you are gone? I know I yell more than I should, cuss more than I should and fight a temper that sometimes boils over too quickly. I also know that I love as hard as I can, trust more than I probably should and really try hard to put others before myself, but some days are clearly more successful than others. I know I should go to church more and want so badly to make that a part of my family’s life but am not taking the steps to make it happen? I want to give Buster a foundation that teaches tolerance and acceptance of things that are different. That embraces kindness over hatred and that encourages service to others but am I living my life in a way to show him those things? Am I walking the walk? I don’t fear death per say, maybe how it might come to me, but not actual death. I know my Lord and I know that my time in this place is finite but I mean, isn’t that the point? We all, every one of us, has a limited amount of time to make our mark, if we had “forever” would we be as motivated to make the most of the hear and now? Would we be as compelled to strive to be better versions of who we are today? I don’t know. Part of me feels that if there were no beginning and end to this life that it would be far too easy to just let each day slip by and not give any thought to who we are or how we treat others because we would have infinite days ahead of us-why bother now? But we don’t, we don’t have an infinite number of days. We don’t even get to know how many of those days we will be given, sort of lights a fire under you hua? A reason to wake each day and think, if this is my last day what will my gift to the world be today? Will I leave this Earth having done the absolute best I can? I hope so my friend, I certainly hope so.

Friday, February 22, 2013

This is why I'm a Bad Blogger...

Day 22 (And day 10 respectively)
I'm one week away from the end of Free February and one quarter of the way through this Lenten season and, well, I'm not dead.  (As evidenced by this woefully belated blog post)  As I am drawing near to the end of my one month spending freeze I interestingly find that its not such a big deal anymore.  I don't walk by the vending machine and give it that sideways glance you reserve for an old boy friend who has rebuffed you, nope I walk right past that big money taker, processed food dealer and don't even think about it.  I don't even crave the Starbucks runs...OK I'm lying, I miss them like hell and I keep entertaining daydreams of my wonderful husband surprising me with a grande bold cup of love. sugar in the raw and some half and half if your reading this...babe...babe. ..I digress.  In all seriousness, even though it's not complete I can already call this little experiment a success as it has truly reformed my thinking on "need".  I submit for example this striking moment of clarity:  disparate to get out of the house with the baby this past Sunday i decided we would go to the store...not a luxury, not a cheat...or is it?   Disguising a trip to the market as an excuse to leave the house when we didn't really need anything IS luxury spending...even if it's just on a box of raisin bran.. .which it wasn't...cause I can't have that either. ..
On that front I'm happy to report that things have been better than I thought (save for one bad day where my two "projects" collided and my daily intake was all pop chips or trail mix) and restarting my Paleo-ish habits has me feeling better already.
I have been feeling guilty that I haven't made daily contributions to this blog.   I find if I don't have something "interesting" to say (and clearly this is subjective) I don't feel motivated to post.   Beyond that l work full time and by the time I get home and start my real job I really run out motivation but maybe not much longer.  Today's big accomplishment... I downloaded the mobile version of Blogger!  Most of this post has been written on it and so far I really like it  but until I find the spell check feature
I'm up a creek!  Hopefully my latest dance with the technology devil will help me improve this crazy idea of blogging.

Friday, February 15, 2013

No Cash No Cookie…

Day 14

I want a donut.  It’s the two week celebration of my spending hiatus and the second day of Lent and I am hungry.  Yesterday went great and it clearly lulled me into a false sense of security as to how this process would go.  Today I can feel the effects of the “detox” setting in.  I am hungry, I have a headache…did I mention I’m hungry?  I seem to have conveniently forgotten that these first few weeks are…an adjustment…as my body climbs off the carb converted sugar train.  Couple this with the fact Panara stuck a cookie in my lunch order today and it’s just plain hell…goodbye sweet deliciousness, guess I’ll have to settle for picking the chocolate bits out of my trail mix for now.
Evil Temptress

When I mentioned my Lenten endeavor to the Hubs his natural questions was “well haven’t you already given something up?” referencing my Free February project.  Its was a good question, a smart question, a question I should have just answered with "well yes, I guess I am already in compliance"…but no I like to be difficult.  This project ends in February I said, Lent isn’t over until late March, I said…it would be cheating…damn moral fortitude…
On a positive note Free February is progressing quite well.  There have certainly been expenses but they have all been of a medical, grocery or transportation nature.  I have not been to Starbucks (except for this: I have gotten nothing out of the vending machine, no rambling trips to Target and have not had one lunch or dinner eaten out.  While it has required some planning for the most part I am pleased with how well I'm doing.  Don’t get me wrong though, I have a legal pad list going of the things I need to order/buy/do on March 1st including everything from birthday gifts to bridal shower preparations but for now, I’m holding steady.
On another bright note Happy Valentines Day!  I wish you lots of love, hugs and kisses and special times with those you love...all the best things in life really are free!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Another Impending Sacrifice

Day 11

Tomorrow is Fat Tuesday.  A day for many that is a festival of indulgence and indiscretion.  Sadly I have never experienced the real Mardi Gras and even more sadly I doubt I ever will.  I know New Orleans has come a tremendously LONG was since being torn apart by Katrina but I can’t help but feel that some of the original “magic” was washed away with all that water.  Aside from the technicalities I’m also old…with a child…that I breastfed…and let me just tell you those ingredients don’t make for good bead gathering if you know what I mean.  Anyway.  Fat Tuesday for me is the Oh s*#t moment when I realize that the following day is Ash Wednesday and that the time has come for me to once more chose what I will give up for Lent. Lent, for those of you who don’t know, is the period of 40 days beginning with Ash Wednesday (and depending on how you celebrate) culminating on Easter Sunday(Good Friday for some).  Lent is meant to be a time of reflection, and recalls the 40 days of fasting Jesus took on in the desert before he began his public ministry.  To aid in this reflection most select something to sacrifice (usually something they love) although I have seen people also use this as an opportunity to give up a bad habit of some sort as well.  Although most closely associated with the Catholic faith, most all branches of Christianity celebrate in one way or another and I have been doing so for at least the last 10 years.  In the past I have given up sweets, red meat, and pizza…all loves of mine.  Last year however, as I was pregnant, I figured I was practicing more of a 10 month Lenten fast of MANY things I love (Sushi, booze, coffee) and couldn’t bear the thought of letting go of another so I took a break.  This year though it’s time to get back on track.
As I mentioned in one of my first blogs, this little project sparked from another line of thinking related to my physical health more so than my fiscal health.  Although my diet is not crapy by any means there is always room for improvement.  The bottom line is that when I eat a certain way, I just feel better.  This isn’t about diet or weight loss but quality of life.  So now with two days to spare I am contemplating eliminating grains for Lent…and really struggling with the idea.  This struggle is less about difficulty and a lot more about laziness.  Prior to becoming pregnant Mike and I both were pretty much living a Paleo/Primal lifestyle and feeling amazing for it.  But with that baby came carb cravings and hunger that I just could not ignore.  A pregnant body knows what it needs and I tried really hard to listen.  When we originally made the switch it only took a week or two and the cravings for those types of food really faded into the background.  I could walk past a try of bagels or donuts in the break room without even blinking but once I caved to my cravings during my pregnancy I have had a hard time regaining my resolve.
Now a days the issue is less about cravings and way more about convenience.  I have a full time job, I have a very active toddler and most nights I feel like I’ve moved a mountain if I got a real meal on the table (or counter as it were).  Please don’t miss understand, eating Paleo/Primal is not hard but it DOES require planning and preparation…another subject, if you recall, that I’m struggling with currently.  Dinner isn’t that hard at all but breakfast and lunch (mostly breakfast) are so much easier with instant oatmeal and cereal. 
When I commit to my Lenten goal I take it very seriously and as such don’t want to deliberately set myself up for failure.  On the other hand, Lent seems to be the only time of year my resolve is stronger than my “wants”.  Left to my own devices a Monday morning commitment to skip the bread ends with a brownie someone brought in from home but if I give something up in the name of something bigger than myself (IE The Lord or my baby) it’s a breeze…weird I know…So I guess I will spend the next 48hr talking myself into using this as a spring board to wellness…and an opportunity to eat as much pizza and cookies as I can.  Fat Tuesday indeed!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Wholesale Fail...

Day 10

Things got off to a rough start around here this morning.  In my joy and haste to enjoy my free cup of coffee on Thursday somehow it escaped me that by having that empty bag I was now out of coffee...until yesterday morning!  Hello, my name is Lori Ann and I am a coffee addict.  I'd say caffeine addict, which is probably more accurate, but since I don't drink soda and rarely drink tea, coffee is my primary fix and boy do I feel it when I don't get it.  I know its not the best for me, depending on what article you read, but I figure it like this; I don't do drugs, I gave up smoking years ago and my drinking days have been reduced to the occasional glass of wine/beer on a Friday night so if this is my worst be it.  I muddled thorough my morning yesterday by digging out an old Tasters Choice decaf (Blasphemy) single serve left over from my pregnancy days...seriously the day I could begin drinking my beloved again that decaf got shoved to the back...way back and that almost coffee taste held me until I got to work and could get a cup of the real (all though not nearly as delicious as my K-cup) deal. Well fast forward to this morning...SATURDAY morning and there was nothing there to save me, not even crappy office coffee.  Being that I'm on this spending freeze dashing to Starbucks was clearly not an option and loading the baby in the car to go to the grocery just for coffee seemed like a poor secondary option.  Buster has been a big bag of whiny for the past two days.  Judging by the globs of drool falling out of his mouth and the random fever he had this week I blame teeth, probably his 1 yr molars, but Ill keep you posted on that.  Anywho!  The only thing that kept him moderately happy this morning was me sitting in the floor to be at his utmost disposal weather for sitting, climbing, snuggling-my favorite-or being his human I sat there I really though about just how similar we are to Gorillas, the way their babies hang and climb all over them...I digress...This morning was his 9:15 make up class at MyGym.  His regular class is on Thursdays and he normally goes with the Hubs but the weeks where work conflicts I get a chance to take him.  To be honest I spent a few hours this morning (yes you read that correctly, I had a few hours to think about this IE: We've been up since 5:30) trying to talk myself out of it.  He's so whiny, he's tired, he's going to be a mess and we HAVE to go to BJ's today (we need coffee after all)  But by 8:00 when he was still hanging on I decided to stop being selfish and get us dressed and go.  I knew he was tired so I decided to leave at 8:30 thinking I could take the long way and he could sack out for the ride.  Par for the course, that plan was a bust.  He finally falls out a little before 9 and I'm figuring I'll let him sleep in the car until the last possible minute.  We arrive, get parked and all of a sudden it hits me, I'm wearing my Uggs...which means no socks...which means no My Gym...SERIOUSLY!?!?  I blame the coffee deprivation...Soooo after mentally kicking myself A LOT we head for BJ's.
I love club shopping but this trip had me nervous.  Never mind the sleep land mine I was navigating but I knew the items I needed were the big ticket ones; the toilet paper, the paper towels, baby wipes, it was extra awesome when I got to the checkout and found out that our membership had expired!   Ohhhhh Where. Is. That. COFFEE!!??!!!  I don't even want to type the final bill.  I take the tiniest amount of comfort in the fact that I didn't make any "splurge" purchases today.  The bill was big (especially with the instant 50.00 charge to re-up our membership) but everything purchased was something we needed...of wait, I did get sea salt...I guess we didn't need sea salt but my cookies might argue that.  (a big mouthful of kosher salt is not always a good thing!)  So in an effort to mitigate the damage I resolved to hole up here for the rest of the day to remove any spending temptation (infomercials what?)  Thankfully I have wonderful friends and two of them invited me and my whiny little appendage over for a lovely dinner and much need play date.  I think Matthew had a good time too ;)  Thank goodness for the kindness of friends!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Working on my fitness

Day 7

            Today marks the end of my first week of Free February so I decided to reward myself with Starbucks this morning…for FREE of course!  If you have never taken the time to read your packaging…and really why would you, it is fairly small and inconveniently placed for a reason…on every bag of Starbucks Coffee you purchase is a little note notifying you that you can trade in said empty bag for a free tall drip coffee!  Now I will admit, buying bagged Starbucks is not the cheapest coffee route to take without a decent coupon and say a Super Doubles sale at Harris Teeter BUT when you calculate in this little freebie (1.84 value locally) it does quite a bit to lower the overall price for the value, and its damn tasty to boot.  Nice way to start my day.

             Even though its only been one week I'm already seeing a shift in my habits.  I'm actually thinking before I spend! (I know I almost fainted too)  And beyond that I am looking for more economical (read FREE) ways to do things.  Including my exercise routine.  I have admittedly been, for the most part, a total waste of healthy space since this baby was born.  His sleep has been so erratic from day one that there was no real time to "plan" for a work out and if I'm being completely honest even thought I could now work out after he goes to bed at night I don't wanna.  Its already 8-8:30 most nights before I even sit down, exercising at that time of night, for me, just ain't happening, but something has got to give.  I am pretty fortunate that the building I work in provides a few nice amenities one of which is complementary yoga/Pilate's/ab classes on varying days of the week.  I have never really considered these for several reasons; one, my work schedule does not always allow for a "normal" lunch time, meaning making a 12:15 class is not always feasible.  Secondly, I used to work out like a normal person, at a real gym with a real trainer, not in an empty office space, so it just wasn't something I needed.  And finally I am not a tidy exerciser...I don't "perspire" I sweat!  And the thought of having to finish my work day and potentially meet with clients after this type of activity (with no access to a shower) is not the most appealing.  BUT as I mentioned before, something has got to give, and a gym membership isn't in the cards right now.  So I dug my yoga mat out of the closet last night and packed my gym bag to take Abs and more today.  And don't you know the teacher was a no-show!  They say its never happened before...I say it's a sign ;) So since we were already dressed we settled for a brisk walk instead, thank God I packed pants and not shorts!  Not the outcome I expected but I found myself excited about the idea of actually working out (which was the real sign today) so I will be back for more..I just hope the teacher shows up this time!

No hump day

Day 6

            It was a quiet money day around these parts which was a lovely change of pace.  I nabbed a leftover bagel at the office for breakfast (chocolate chip-SCORE) had lunch provided through a work meeting and we used a coupon for a free Papa Johns pizza for dinner last night.  Ahh the sweet sweet taste of redemption.  My poor check card doesn't know whats going on!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Embracing the "F" bomb...

Day 5

I'm not the least bit ashamed to admit that the "F' word is by far my favorite of all the curse words. Perhaps this is a problem in and of itself but that's a post for another day.  I use it far more often than I mean to, certainly more that would lady like, but considering there are scientific studies that show the physical and emotional benefit to using curse words as stress reducers I'm going to continue in the name of self preservation.
Today however the "F" bomb I'm looking to drop is a different one.  Today, my "F" stands for failure...

This is what got me today...only 5 days in.  When I went to pick up Buster from daycare I was told he had woken up with a fever this afternoon.  The good news, as far as I was concerned, was that he was acting pretty normal, fussy maybe, but still running around babbling his little head off.  So I told her we would monitor and keep her posted before we brought him back. As stupid as it may seem, taking this kids temperature stresses me out (and sometimes results in me utilizing my previously mentioned stress reducer).   Trying to get him to hold still while I attempt to press his little arm to his side to hold the thermometer in place for what feels like FOREVER has yet to really work for me.   The Hubs can do this no problem, but mom...not so much.  So ironically just a few days ago I had made the decision to finally get one of these instant read jobbies for both of our sakes but clearly I had planned on waiting until after Free February.  Why?  Because we already have a thermometer.  Rendering this one, albeit so much better...a luxury.  Crash.  Burn.
I spent a fair amount of time beating myself up for this tonight.  Despite the fact I have used it multiple times already with not only success but no incident what so ever makes part of me (the logical side) F'n happy.  But that other half, the half that is trying desperately to reconcile a failure on a 28 day project only 5 days in has struggled.  And then I told myself to get over it.  So what.  One failure does not define the whole experience, unless you let it.  I mean lets face it, without a fair amount of failure how does one learn to really appreciate success?  I might lose of few of you here but I take a pretty hard line on this concept.  I do not subscribe to the notion of "every kid gets a trophy".   I also don't think every kid should make the team/play/band whatever just because they try.  I really feel these things do a terrible disservice to our children because that is JUST NOT how life works.  You don't get a job just because you show up for the interview and you certainly don't get a raise/promotion just because you have good attendance.  As a parent, I get it.  We want to shield our children from pain and upset.  We work so hard to build their self esteem and sense of worth and it is torture to watch your hard work chipped away by someone who doesn't appreciate how fabulous they are.  But guess what not everyone they encounter in their lives is going to find them to be the little gems we know they are.  So yes failure sucks and it hurts but it also teaches.  It teaches us that we aren't invincible and that sometimes our best wont be good enough but that's ok.  The beautiful thing about failure is that it is just a comma not a period.  Its a pause in a path but not the end of a journey.  So you don't make the team the first time you try, you identify your weakness and work to grow stronger and you try again.  So you don't get the part in the school play, you keep honing your work and audition again and again until you find the part you were meant to play.  So you spend unplanned money on a thermometer to take care of your sick kid, you brush it off and give yourself a chance to do better tomorrow.  You embrace the failure because success without failure just isn't as sweet.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Shut the front door...

Day 4

Short and sweet today people.  Not only did I not spend any money…I FOUND MONEY!  Seriously check it out…it helps when you have as many aliases as I do…but whatever don’t judge, I’m getting paid!

Almost Made It...

Day 3 

I thought I might make it through the whole weekend without spending ANY money but of course life had other plans. For one it slipped my mind that we had planned on hitting Babies R Us this weekend to take advantage of their trade-in sale. Buster was using a car seat I got from a friend that really filled a gap for us, but had expired in December. And while many Americans might ignore an expiration date stamped on a car seat, when your Hubs has sat through 40+ hours of car seat training you are not afforded that luxury (and as an added safety commercial-you really shouldn’t ignore it-the plastic can degrade over time due to extreme temp conditions in your vehicle and it can really weaken the safety and effectiveness of your seat. So please, don’t ignore this date, it could save a most important life!). Couple this with the fact that we also reached the 30” mark and we had two car seats that needed to be replaced… OY. Thankfully we had been hording gift cards, some of which we received3 when he was born, that had been earmarked just for this purchase. So I am happy to report that after extensive research we selected our new seat (Times 2) and with the trade-in credit on one, a coupon for the second and a cash in of our gift card stash we only came out of pocket 125 bucks. Still no small day but this was certainly a necessary expense and we managed to do it at a time when we could maximize our savings so I’ll count it as a win.

Speaking of win, quite a game last night! I love football but I’m team agnostic. I have never, for whatever reason, formed a true sports allegiance. I tend to sort of pick and chose based on the game and who happens to be playing. I guess I had sort of aligned myself to the 49’s last night, due to the fan base that surrounded me, but I can enjoy a good play regardless of who makes it and there were lots of good plays last night…some fairly shitty ones too…but for the most part a really exciting game to watch. We ended up deciding, fairly last minute, to have a few friends over to watch the game (those of us with early to bed ankle biters don’t make the best guest for a party that doesn’t even start till 6:18) and I needed lunch supplies for my work week so a trip to the grocery was required yesterday too. This I will claim as my failure for the day. Not only did I not have a list (or any coupons) I had a sleeping baby in the car. So I got dropped at the front door and proceeded to play my own game of Supermarket Sweep. The combo of no list, no coupons and no time did not make for a very responsible grocery run. So naturally I get home to find that I had forgotten things I needed, surprise, surprise and I spent WAY more than I would have if I had planned and prepared properly…What’s that about the 7 P’s: Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance…I got the last three down pat…

Saturday, February 2, 2013

"Free"dom aint always fun...

Day 2:

I had the amazing honor of accompanying my bestie wedding dress shopping this morning.  If you have never shared this experience with someone before add it to your bucket list, really, you must.  (go camp out at David's Bridal if you have to, believe me every woman can use one more cheerleader!)  To see the excitement, joy, hopefulness that a wedding brings is really a beautiful thing.  Its one of the reasons I firmly believe we should all be allowed to remarry at least every 5 years.  Before you go gettin all crazy, you can totally remarry the one who brought you, but to have a chance to revive that spark, to look at that person, your person and remember why you said "I do" is really a gift...and fresh sheets and towels every 5 years seems about right to me too...
After such a successful trip, and lots of hard work, tummies were rumbling so naturally everyone wanted to grab lunch.  But wait...lunch outside of my kitchen falls squarely into the no-no zone....@$*#...So I had to bow out....which really totally blew (but not quite as much as the peanut butter and jelly I ended up having for lunch).  A not so pleasant reminder that often times when we spend those nonessential dollars its really driven by a social need over a material one.  I wanted more than anything to kick back over all you can eat soup, salad and breadsticks and raise a very large, very frosty glass to one of  my most favorite people in the whole world, but I just couldn't bring myself to do it.  Truthfully were I not openly sharing this endeavor I would have said screw it and gone anyway, which is precisely why I AM sharing this endeavor.  Accountability.  Like so much in life if no one knows your doing something then no one has to know if you fail.  Conversely if no one knows what your doing then there is no one to lift you up and offer you a had when you fall...Sigh...
So whether you intended to or not, thanks for the nudge to do the right thing today, consider your good deed done.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Damn you Zulily!

         Day one, 9:20 am and I already have to catch myself when I open my email and see Zulily has a Stride Rite sale today…CURSES!  Ahh the lessons come hard and fast.  I’m already seeing this may be more about recognizing how easy it is to spend money.  I mean the consumerism is everywhere, it’s even attacking me from my own inbox!  I guess crawling in an internet/facebook/email hole for the month fully defeats the purpose of this exercise though so the temptations live on. Here is just a little taste of what was in my mailbox before 9 am this morning:

Restoration Hardware:  Save Up to 25% on Bedroom & Bath Furniture, Linens, Lighting and More
BJ’s: Final Days for Special Offers
LL Bean: Save up to 60% This Weekend + Free Shipping
William Sonoma: Exclusive Online Offer: 10% Off
The Children’s Place: 25% Off Everything in the Store!
Gymboree: Rain, rain, go away…Rain Gear Shop now open! Plus up to 60% off sale ends Sunday!
Zulily: Up to 80% off | Stride Rite sporty kids' shoes, Pretty in Pink Collection girls' apparel & accessories, Petit Ami handcrafted smocking and more

It is defiantly time for an “unsubscribe” campaign.

            I took care of a few last minute “spends” yesterday, much like the junkie that needs one last hit before they leave for rehab, even got gas on my way home rather than on my way to work this morning.  I realize gas isn’t a “luxury” spend but somehow the first day will feel more successful if I don’t have to remove my check card from my wallet at all. :)
            In other news I actually packed my lunch today!  Only to get to work and remember that we have a chili cookoff at the office…oh well, the effort was made at least.

Daily Spending: I did have to send the check for our summer/fall CSA share today. But I hold no guilt as this is a grocery expense that will cover 23 weeks this summer!