Black Friday guilt

I have so many good intentions. But here it is, Black Friday, and I’ve spent way, way more money than I should. This is shockingly easy to do, because I should spend zero money. It’s also shockingly easy to do, because capitalism works very hard to make sure that it pushes exactly the right buttons in exactly the right way, and I didn’t know that I needed that stuff that looks like mascara and tames flyaways but guess what? I DO.

I spent a lot of money in the middle of the night on Thanksgiving morning, under the guise of saving a lot of money. I ordered a vacuum cleaner but I also ordered presents for Viv’s birthday, and some stocking stuffers (things like soft gloves and socks). Okay, not so bad. My original cart was over $600, and I whittled it way, way down.

Except here it is, Friday morning, and I just found a sheet in my kids’ backpacks that say that there’s another “spirit week” coming up (I hate them. My kids love them. Shrug). They don’t have to participate, but they also don’t have to enjoy school or have fun. It’s a good day to stock up on things that they need for those days – Christmas sweaters, shirts in specific colors, elf headbands – and when you have three kids this crap adds up so stinking fast.

So for the hundredth time since October, I’m saying “I’m done with Christmas,” and I think I’m done with the kids’ birthday presents. And I’m ashamed of what I’ve put on my credit card(s). In my quest for FI, my weakness (and it’s an enormous one) is my kids. Not just things like dentist bills, but things like “I want them to feel involved and excited about school.” And somehow that always costs money.

At any rate, the good news is that my freelancing has gone gangbusters (doorbusters?) this month. My spreadsheet goal says $3000 from company A and $500 from company B. I’m not done yet (there are still two days left!) but it looks like I’ll have $3800 from company A and over $1000 from company B.

So between Christmas, Black Friday spending on essentials, stocking stuffers, and birthday presents, the surprise $800 on car repairs, and let’s be honest here, I also bought myself a vest for no good reason with the Black Friday stuff, I’m the worst frugal blogger in the history of frugal bloggers. But with the extra freelancing I’ve somehow managed to pull off, I’m actually the best. Even it out, and, as with all things, I’m your basic, average, middle-aged suburban soccer mom somehow making it work.

(Here’s to hoping that I do better than “making it work” in the next couple of months).

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