Friday, November 6, 2015

Gone in 60 Hours

Last week, we received a new installment of Fun Dollars. This pay cycle I only pulled out $80 for myself. The reason for the reduction in my own Fun Dollars amount is simple: I started using the Beach Body program, and their "Shakeology" is $120 for a month's supply. Corey graciously told me to order the program; including Shakeology, the 21 Day Fix as well as streaming Beach Body on Demand (their online workout video collection.) He told me that taking $20 out of my Fun Dollars each pay cycle would be what I would normally spend on things like ice cream and Burger King. Since I was determined not to spend my Fun Dollars on junk food with this new program, I happily agreed. (Plus it is a drop in the bucket towards defraying the cost of the Skakeology each month.)

With this 21 Day Fix set to arrive in the mail any day, I was more determined than ever to be successful with it; and that meant removing ALL temptation. I knew exactly where to start...Skateland!

Skateland is one of the more entertaining family outings we have discovered. Carrick's school hosted a fund-raiser there the week before he left. I had never been to Skateland, but had driven by it on multiple occasions. I was thrilled at the chance to finally have a reason to go. (I spent many a day at Scottie's Skateland in Quincy, IL as a youth.) Mostly I was intimidated by the thought of taking two children to a skating rink. Carrick is/was still new on his skates. I knew I would have to be available for him "just in case". I also wondered whether or not Lily could even participate. But with this school fund raiser, I figured there would be lots of other parents and children there. So, if Lily couldn't skate, maybe she could find someone to play with.

As it turned out, Lily was actually able to rent toddler skates that fit over her shoes. They also had "skate mates", a PVC pipe walker on wheels, basically. She practically ran around the rink armed with her stable skates and her crutch. Carrick on the other hand, refused to use a skate mate, or his mother's helping hand. His friends from school were there, and he insisted on avoiding me. "No, mom, I can do it on my own!" This was essentially my first foray into the world of "geez mom, don't embarrass me in front of my friends." He did crash out, landing on his backside dozens of times, but he always recovered.

The kids had such a blast at the fundraiser that we went back two days later for Customer Appreciation Day, which included free admission! While we were there, I played the game "Red Light/Green Light". I wasn't the only parent playing, either. I had fun chatting with the other parents lined up against the back wall before we started. I ended up winning free admission for me and the kids for the next week on Wednesday.

Wednesday (of last week) was two days in to the new pay cycle, and I had $80.00 in my wallet. It was also Carrick's "visit day" at his new Montessori School. I told him we would go back to Skateland to celebrate him going to a new school (and use our free admission.) As soon as we walked through the door at the skating rink, some kid in a school uniform of khaki shorts and a navy polo said, "Hey, buddy!" to Carrick. I asked him, "do you know that kid?"

"Yeah! He goes to Montessori!" Carrick replied.

Moments later, we saw a little girl. Carrick's face lit up, "Hey, Lily!" He turned to me, "Mom! Her name is Lily, just like my sister! AND she's in my class at the Montessori school!!!!" I recognized the girl from when we were there a week ago, on Thursday. After putting on the kids' skates, and my own, I saw one of the same parents who played Red Light/Green Light last week also. He came up to me and said, "I heard your son is going to the Montessori School." I smiled and said yes. "My wife teaches there, Miss Nicole. She's the aide in your son's classroom. All 4 of my kids go there."

I thought, wow...small world. In 50 days of going to the "other" school, we never ONCE saw someone he knew from school out in public. Here we are, after just one visit day at the new school, and I ran in to 5 kids (Lily was someone else's kid) from Carrick's new school. I took this as a sign that I made the right decision about where he attends class.

As I zoomed around the skating rink, with the wind hitting my face, I knew things were going to get better. All the stress from Carrick's old school would soon diminish. He was making friends, and I was hearing great things about his new school. Lily and Carrick amused themselves with snacks from the concession stand as I skated by myself, letting go of everything, just being one with the movement. It felt so good.

Afterwards, we went out for pizza. The next day I treated them to one last fling of Burger King (for breakfast AND after school, I don't normally do that.) I spent as much of my Fun Dollars as I could. I didn't want anything left over to tempt me in my new endeavor.

On Friday, I went on a Goodwill shopping spree. I bought Carrick "new" polos, pants, belts, shoes, a hoodie, and a hat to wear to his new school. I put them in a gift bag when I got home and wrote him a card, telling him how proud we are of him. I also bought Lily a few new dolls, hats and shoes while Goodwill shopping too. We made it to FOUR different Goodwills last Friday! I used my Fun Dollars for every purchase.

I started this week with $2.00 in my wallet. They stayed there until yesterday when I ate half a slice of cheese pizza at Costco with Lily for lunch. Don't worry, they account for cheese pizza in the eating program that goes along with the Beach Body challenge I am working on. I wasn't cheating. But the good news is, my Fun Dollars are gone for the ice cream splurges here. Then I get a new installment next Monday, just in time for my Sister Visit Trip to Chicago! (So, yes, there may be *some* splurging, but only in moderation...I still want that beach body!)

Admission to Skateland, skate rental, snacks, pizza afterward, Burger King for breakfast and lunch, Goodwill shopping spree, and Costco pizza- $80.00

Balance this pay cycle- $0.00

Happy Spending!