I don’t think I’ve ever been busier in my life than I am these days. In some ways it’s good, it’s nice to feel productive and it distracts me from the fact that I’m not making much progress on the debt. In other ways it’s bad, I am experiencing some negative side effects on my health and tend to feel overwhelmed a bit more lately particularly about our tight finances. But there’s not much I can do about it at the moment so I’m just trying to roll with it and hope that someday soon I’ll be able to relax a bit. Here’s what is keeping me busy these days…
Boys: They are 18 months and just a whirlwind of activity. They are truly becoming little independent people and, even though I’ve said this about every stage they’ve gone through, so far this is my favorite stage! Keeping up with them is exhausting and exhilarating all at once.
Family: The move to be closer to my family has been wonderful in most respects but it has added a whole level of demand on my time that I wasn’t considering. Seems like most weekends have some sort of family gathering going on and there’s a level of expectation that we will be attending all of them even though we live an hour and a half away. Lately I’ve been saying “no” more frequently and with a lot less guilt. I figure they were used to only seeing us a couple times a year, they will survive if they only see us a couple times a month!
Work: Business is booming, which is great but also stressful. Work days are flying by lately in a flurry of deadlines and 8 hour days are stretching into 10-12 hour days a little too frequently these days. Thankfully, we’ve brought on another person so once they are up to speed it should help calm the rest of our work loads.
Side work: December is my busiest time of the year for my etsy businesses. I participate in holiday craft fairs and typically see a pretty big increase in online sales both of which add to the strain on my time. I usually close down the shops for a few weeks once the Christmas rush is over and right now I’m just counting down the days until I can shut that part of my life down for a few weeks!
Daily Life: Living on such a tight budget means every dollar has to go as far as possible. Even though I’ve learned a lot in my relatively short quest to pay off my debt, frugal living still doesn’t come naturally. Also, I think frugal living just takes more time, a lot of my money used to go to convenience like prepared food or replacing things instead of fixing. Either way, I spend a considerable amount of time planning, reviewing, and researching ways in which to make my dollar stretch. Hunting down deals, making things myself that I otherwise just would have bought prepared, repairing things that I would have replaced, and all of the other things I have to do now to get more for my dollar keep me busy. Plus all the hustling to sell off stuff we don’t need any more like outgrown clothes or bring in money in some other way adds to the strain.
I’m thinking that I might just reserve the month of January as a “no family events, no side jobs, and no hustling” month.