We ventured out to the library this past Saturday, per usual. It had been snowing for a little while, but we did it anyway because we had to get out. It was a “now or never” situation because we knew we were going to get slammed, and soon. Thankfully it didn’t get nasty, and our little ladies still made it to the Daddy Daughter Dance that night, or we would have had two very sad little girls, and a sad Daddy too.
Our own date didn’t turn out nearly so well. Sunday dawned cold and gray, but with no snow falling. We had tickets to the symphony down in Portland, a good hour and a half away, and so planned to leave well in advance of curtain. It came time for us to get on the road, and without a cancellation notice or a single snowflake, we set off. The highways were dry and clear, and we made great time. Half an hour from the theater, we got the cancellation. And then a call from the restaurant that they were closing early. And so we took our overdressed selves to the bar for adult beverages while we had gramma and grampa to babysit. We chatted with strangers, and made new friends, and headed home just as the storm really got going.
I’d say we got somewhere between two and three feet of snow from Sunday night through Monday. It was pretty hairy at points. J tried to stay ahead of it, clearing paths to the truck and the chickens, but in the end, he had to call out of work because he couldn’t see the end of the driveway in his rearview mirror. It was several days of playing inside, making homecooked meals and homemade valentines (check them out on Instagram!).
We all made it through, and the sunshine yesterday morning…oh! The sunshine! It was so nice to sit at the breakfast table and let it wash over our faces.
So. Frugal February. I didn’t cut our grocery budget last week because the long term weather forecast was so brutal, I wasn’t sure when I’d get out again. We stocked up on things, though I didn’t go too far overboard. We knew this past weekend’s plans would cost us some money, and we were prepared for that – I built that in. J went a little above and beyond for his date with the girls, buying flowers for them and bubbly for mama, but I had tucked away the cash for their dance tickets months ago, so that wasn’t too much of a blow. I did spend $5 and took the girls to a Valentine’s crafting party in town, which was unplanned. No snacks or beverages purchased, no non-essential impulse buys at the grocery store.
And then we bought a snowblower.
My husband is the handy type. He can fix most anything that’s not too far gone, so when he found a snowblower in the garage down in Pennsylvania this fall, he brought it home with us. He tinkered and fiddled, and got it running. And then the damn thing exploded. It is now beyond his abilities to make it operational, though it may still be worth repairing, and so it sits. Worthless in the face of all the snow we were expecting. A quick scouring of the Facebook marketplace led J to a small, well-used machine, and $100 later, he saved himself hours of work and lots of back pain.
What I’m learning through this endeavor is that we actually don’t blow as much cash as I thought maybe we did. We do make unplanned purchases, but they’re not usually frivolous and are often items that have been on the list for some time but suddenly become important. I suppose in the grand scheme of things, that’s not too terrible.