Friday, July 16, 2010

Resisting Temptation

Next week is the last week of Upward Bound, so Zaven will be coming home soon. Then in not quite three weeks, school starts. Next summer he'll have his last summer of Upward Bound and then he'll be going to college. So these last few weeks of summer are some of our last few weeks where our whole family will be together and not overwhelmed with school, sports, lessons, etc.

I want to go on vacation. I want it bad. It's been a rough summer.

But we can't afford a vacation.

I try to be a frugal person, save money when I can, coupon shop, etc. So we've tried 'staycations' in the past. Can I just take this opportunity to say how much I hate staycations? They're great if you live in Chicago or New York where there's a ton to do and even the people who live there can't have done everything... or if you live by the beach or the grand canyon where no matter how many times you've been it's still exciting and new. But for those of us who live in a small town, chances are we've been to every interesting place so often they know us by name. 'Real' vacations are a break from your normal life. Plus real vacations involve someone else cleaning up your living quarters while you're out and about, eating out so there aren't dishes, and staying where your kids can't pull out every toy they own because all those toys and books and videos are back at home.

Sure you can eat all your meals out since you're saving all that money by not paying for airfare, gas, and hotels. But that doesn't take into account how cheap I am. On my vacations, we drive rather than fly, stay in priceline hotels (with free continental breakfasts) at bargain prices, and fix sandwiches in the hotel room so we only eat our lunch mean in restaurants. It doesn't feel bad doing this on vacation because we remind ourselves that the money we're saving is paying for all the cool things we're doing during the day. But fixing sandwiches at home for dinner doesn't feel at all like a vacation because the money we're saving is only paying for the trash pickup and the electric bill.

I keep a pretty close eye on our budget and I know how much we can and can't afford. We CAN'T afford a vacation.

Maybe I'll win the lottery.

1 comment:

Azaera said...

I hear you!! I want a vacation too! Our city sucks. There's next to nothing to do here. So boring. And we don't have enough money either. If I had a place to stay once I got to my destination (like spare rooms at a cousin/aunt/uncle/grandparent's house) then we could easily afford to drive somewhere, but the hotel costs is what kills us. Sigh.