Sunday, August 25, 2013

Month 10: Debt Repayment Update and Back to School

This month marks the end of our extra summer costs for our summer vacation getaway,  my professional fees, and additional childcare expenses for the summer holiday. This month we're down $470 which leaves:


I'm setting high hopes for next month. I want to pay down at least $1000 which is about double what we've been paying down on the principal for the last two months but totally do-able without the added expenses the summer brought. 

I haven't gone crazy back to school shopping for B this year. He still has a backpack, lunch bag, thermos, water bottle, and containers from last year. His existing wardrobe is pretty good and only needs a few things to supplement for the Fall. Up until this point we've always received a bunch of hand me downs from friends with boys a year older than B but two friends who weren't planning on having more kids recently had second baby boys so I'm not expecting the hand me downs to keep flowing. At this point, I have been finding it hard to find the larger sizes in thrift stores. The selection is usually poor and the clothing is well worn. A few things I did buy this year were on sale but I haven't really been finding very many good sales lately. Here is what we got:

- Sonic the Hedgehog Graphic Tee - for wearing under a sweatshirt ($5 - Walmart Clearance)
- Pair of blue jeans ($5 - Walmart Clearance)
- Two long-sleeved tees ($10 - Joe Fresh Sale)
- Package of 2 boxer briefs ($5 - Marshalls)
- Haircut ($10 incl. tip with $2 Off Coupon)

Things he still needs (budgeted amounts):

- Pair of indoor and outdoor shoes ($20 & $35) - I am willing to pay a bit more for the outdoors since B spends a ton of time outside on his bike, scootering, at the playground, and puttering around the backyard. The indoors I usually get from Payless.- Pair of fall pajamas ($10) - waiting on a good deal for these. We are still wearing summer pjs at this point and have two pairs of pjs with pants. 

Looks like I'll be spending about $100 this year on back to school which I don't think is too bad. I've also been reminding myself that he doesn't need EVERYTHING for before he goes back to school. I think as parents we forget this and opt for buying it all at once which is harder on the wallet.  For the first few weeks he will still likely be wearing shorts to school. 

Monday, August 19, 2013

My favourite parts of this summer

At the in-laws cottage in Temagami, Ontario

Summer is rapidly coming to an end so I thought I’d post the highlights of our summer in no particular order:

Purchasing a little piece of heaven up north and being lucky enough to spend nearly all our weekends this summer up there

A big milestone for the 5 year old - Learning to swim in the deep end of the pool with no life jacket or floatation device

Weekend morning canoe rides on the lake and dreaming about living on the lake full-time

Mid-week trip up north with my best friend while she was back from Edmonton and laughing until my stomach hurt

Monday library date nights with my biggest guy

Spending a somewhat surprisingly relaxing long weekend at my in-laws cottage – both boys slept like a charm and were easily entertained all day long

Seeing the littlest beam at the sight of any boat or boat ride

Getting together with friends whether it was hosting dinners, quick coffees, or having visitors up north, friends were never far away this summer

Attending the beautiful wedding of two friends and celebrating and catching up with some old university friends

Having a ton of interesting projects on the go at work and watching the pieces fall into place with my career (still no permanent job yet but working on that!)

At the beginning of the year I had really hoped to take a one-week vacation and spend some much needed family time. We didn’t take that week off this summer but we spent so much more time together, uninterrupted family time, just us - up north on the weekends. We are really so blessed to live in such a beautiful country and province with opportunities for cultural and outdoor experiences at our fingertips that we often take for granted.  A friend, Sarah, recently posted on her 10 year anniversary trip to Niagara Falls . Not Europe but amazing nevertheless and only 2 hours away. Our own backyard has so much to offer.   

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Summer relaxing

I've been a little bit of an infrequent blogger this summer. We've been spending nearly all of our weekends lakeside. Last weekend we were up at my in-law's cottage and we happened upon a well used hammock they had lying around. We brought it back with us for our own summer place. This was the first weekend we put it up and it was used constantly. Yes, there was ample arguing over turns, who is sitting on top of who, etc. but the boys and their friends had such good fun on the hammock all weekend.