Summer Spending Slide

We picked strawberries!

We picked strawberries!

The calendar says summer, though in the midwest it is wet, foggy and cold.  I have polar fleece and wool socks on, for real!  The temperature doesn’t feel like summer but the spending does!  It’s week 2 of being home with my daughter, and things feel a little more financially disorganized than usual.   Exhibit A:  unplanned trip to Michaels Crafts today = 15.00.  Now, on one hand, I am happy to do it as my daughter has been working tirelessly in her room on “world crafts.”  On the other hand, too many days of living it up will show up in the ol’ budget at the end of the week.

Last summer I had the purse-strings cinched a little tighter as we had an expensive vacation to Santa Fe and the need to save for our exterior renovation project.  This year we have many smaller items we are budgeting for, but nothing forcing us to really push hard and save like mad.  Honestly, we have spent so many years pushing hard on big goals, that it feels kind of strange to be without them. So this summer I am trying to find that balance between spending money on worthwhile, fun outings while not getting to the point of ‘I forgot to make a meal plan so we have to go out to eat…’

Last summer I also struggled a bit in the transition to being home full-time.  See ‘Summer Time, Is the Living too Easy?’    Curiously, I wrote that almost a year ago exactly!  This confusing state seems part and parcel of adapting to summer vacation.   For today, I have my crafting kid singing away in her bedroom (with a sack of feathers and beads from Michaels…) and I am off to prepare dinner at home using ingredients on hand.  That’s the balance we strike for today.

Trying to balance spendy days with cheap fun days...

Trying to balance spendy days with cheap fun days…




2 thoughts on “Summer Spending Slide

  1. Lili@creativesavv

    Hi Jen,
    I don’t see anything wrong with spending on craft items for kids, as I’m sure you don’t wastefully spend. Do you have a section in your budget for summer fun for the family, aside from vacations? I homeschooled our kids through 8th grade, so any time I bought craft supplies or educational games, I just took the cost out of our schooling budget. And for fun things, like going to the cheapo movie theater (at the end of my kids’ interest it was $1 per person for matinees once a week), we had an entertainment budget. It wasn’t much, about $20 per month, but that was enough for us. We still have an entertainment budget, but we haven’t been using it much, as everyone is so busy, so we have a large surplus now, which we’ll use for a couple of day trips around our area on Sundays this summer.

    It wasn’t just something that helped the grown-ups stay on budget, but it really taught our kids how to make thoughtful choices. I would routinely ask them how they would like to spend the entertainment budget. It was the one area of the budget that they got to have a lot of input.

    Good luck!
    btw, those strawberries look wonderful!

    1. healthfulsave Post author

      Thank you for the great tips! Hopefully in a week or so we will be more settled into this summer routine. In the meanwhile, there is a lot of crafting still going on so thankful for that.
      We ended up being lucky we picked those strawberries early last week… It has rained every day since then and things must be really waterlogged at the farm by now.


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