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Step 3: Pinching a Penny

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Posted on : 12:28 PM | By : Nic | In : , ,

It's been another wild week of planning and dreaming and holding bowls under the noses of puking children. Autumn got a bug of some kind that caused intense vomiting. Unfortunately that was her only symptom - no fever, no chills, no diarrhea. And it didn't go away for 3 days. On the fourth day we had to go to the ER to get her rehydrated again with an IV, and she and I and Rainn stayed the night in a very nice Pediatric ward on Friday night. We were home the next day with a very weak but much happier child.

So we were going to have a garage sale this weekend but life had other plans and that will have to happen next weekend when John is down in the States retrieving the bus. Because we are shifting our priorities even more dramatically than they've already shifted through the years, the television, stereos and video games all had to go, and we're just clearing out the stuff we don't need. This will have the added bonus of giving us just that much more cash to ensure that if anything goes wrong on his trip, we'll have some emergency money handy. It's so important to over-estimate the cost of everything, and then have even more in your pocket just in case.

It's also amazing how much money the garden saved us. We haven't had to buy any vegetables since the beginning of the season, as something has been ripe all the time. First it was lettuce, then spinach, then snow peas, then beans. Next we'll be getting some carrots and tomatoes, and by then our second batch of lettuce will sprouting. This month I haven't been that willing to cook big meals because of the heat, so we've had lots of chili in the crock pot (which we like to make into burritos), spinach omelettes, sandwiches, and scrambled-egg burritos and stir fries with potstickers. For breakfast its good ol' oatmeal and for snacks we eat apples and snow peas and peanut butter. Surprisingly while I haven't felt like I've scrimped that much, we've only spent $360 all month for a family of 4 and a baby, including things like toothpaste and disposable diapers when I've needed to use them.

In the meantime not having a car has been incredibly good for us. We've saved about $300 a month, and although we've borrowed some vehicles and put gas in them in return, that's still a huge difference. I've also not felt that I couldn't do the things I needed or wanted. I think I've actually gotten out more because it seems much easier to pop them in slings and strollers than to get them all in and out of car seats. They enjoy it more too. We've been to dragonboat races, the library, the grocery store, and the park on foot, and amazingly I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight (although I am not in the shape I was in, lol).

Anyway, that's been the process this week. Just putting together an emergency stash and drawing funny diagrams of buses.

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