April 9, 2011

Dollars and Sense

Hubby and I have financial moodswings. We go from super-saving mode to super-spending mode. We are both culprits for convincing each other that we NEED something, rather than WANT something. These cycles continue for a while, and then we hit a peak where we revert back into savings mode. Hubby's mantra becomes "We have no money".

For example, this is what happens on Thursday nights after flyer day when we're in savings mode:

Me - "Hun, look at this awesome rug. It would look great in our living room AND it's on sale"
Hubby - "We have no money"

Me - "Look hun, that patio set we wanted is on sale"
Hubby - "We have no money"

Me - "Oh good, chicken is on sale"
Hubby - "We have no money"

In contrast, this is what Thursday night sounds like in spending mode:

Me - "Ooh, look at those sheets. They would look great in Cate's room"
Hubby - "Yes, hunny"

Me - "We should pick up another light for the backyard"
Hubby - "Mhmm"

Me - "Oh good, chicken is on sale"
Hubby - "Mhmm"

I guess it seems that I am always in spending mode...

Well, we are currently hitting the peak of spending mode. We recently replaced a bunch of light fixtures, bought a new double stroller, and hubby bought me some beautiful jewellery for Valentine's Day / Maddie's Birth / Making up for not getting me anything for Cate's Birth. Best of all, today we decided to move forward with painting the exterior of our house. This may not seem like a huge deal, but it was one of the first things we wanted to change when we moved in 2.5 years ago. I even got a quote shortly after we moved in, but it just wasn't in the cards at the time. The current colours are VERY dated and frankly, it looks like its never been washed. The exterior of the house just doesn't reflect how much we like our house (does that sound cheesy?).

So, this week I called up the same company and they said they would honour the quote from 2 years ago. Hubby and I "discussed" it and today we picked paint colours! We're hoping to have it done by the end of the month - I can't wait to share the before and after pictures.

With all of that being said, I am sure the end of the spending spree is approaching. It's time to get re-focused on paying off our debt and putting more money in the kids' RESPs. Time to once again go back to being a responsible adult. I am grateful that we both have secure jobs and good salaries to allow us to go through these cycles, but that also makes it difficult to live on a conservative budget and spend within acceptable boundaries. It really is true what they say - the more you make, the more you spend.

So here are my questions for you:

Who makes the financial decisions in your home?

Do you go through these cycles too?

I would love to hear of someone who actually lives on a cash budget - no loans, no credit card debt, no LOCs, just cash. It just sounds unheard of these days...

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