Birthdays on a Budget
This weekend we celebrated our baby's first birthday. With our budget in mind, we planned a simple celebration with a focus on spending quality time with our community and avoiding any unnecessary complications, which brings both stress and extra expenses. For the party, we grilled some brats and burgers at our nearby park and asked guests to bring a dish to pass in lieu of a gift. We also asked everyone to bring a letter or card that we will put into a memory box for our daughter to read when she turns 18, a tradition that we began with our oldest daughter's first birthday and that we plan to continue periodically as they both grow up. The kids played at the playground and the adults were able to relax and talk to each other a bit (because let's be real, a first birthday party is more for the parents than the kid!) and we all ate carrot cake baked by Grandma. Nice, simple, and very budget-friendly!
June is a big birthday month in our family, and we also celebrated Ginger's birthday this week! After thinking it over and looking at our budget, we decided to treat ourselves to a night out at a restaurant. Although we have cut way back on eating out and ordering in, once in a while we still like to splurge. Tracking our expenses more carefully allows us to be in control of knowing when we can chose to indulge without it busting our budget. After all, it's not about cutting out every single extra expense, but about feeling like we are spending our resources in the ways that are important to us and being confident in our decisions.