Finance

Why your family should give into your guilty pleasures

This past Mother’s Day, the unthinkable happened.

Our phone rang at 1:30 and it was my mother-in-law. She needed help. At first it sounded as if she may have caught the virus, so we asked her to take her temp and call us back.

She called again a few minutes later and it was clear that was not the case. We hung up and called 911 and my husband rushed to her house.

Two days later, she passed away from a brain hemorrhage. We were devastated and shocked.

Yet my husband felt something else, too. He looked at the loss of his mother in a different light, saying that it was a reminder that life is short and we need to enjoy it.

And you know what, he is right.

Life IS short.

You work hard for every penny you earn. And you are probably saving and trying to do your best to live within your means.

But are you living?

And by that, I mean … are you allowing yourself some guilty pleasures once in a while?

We certainly do!!

Here are some things we do as a family. Are they necessary? Nope!  But they certainly are fun!

We dine out frequently

We love to dine out. It is something we enjoy doing, so it is one of our favorite guilty pleasures. We usually eat dinner out at least once — and oftentimes — twice a week.

It is definitely not necessary or needed, but we enjoy it!!

We eat unhealthy snacks and treats

I am not a baker. I don’t pretend to be one. I cook just so my family does not starve — that’s how much time I want to spend in the kitchen.

But, we also love snacks and desserts!

Do we need them?  Nope. But we still buy them. And, as long as the cost fits into our weekly budget, we don’t worry about it.

Of course, we consume in moderation … but with a family of five, those snacks do not last long! 😉

We take days off

Every once in a while, we call a day off.  We don’t do our chores. We stay in our PJs all day. We order pizza. We watch movies.

It is a fun way for us to spend time together and not have any cares in the world. We can escape the news and the outside world and focus on ourselves.

We buy things we don’t need

A couple of times a year, I take my kids to the store and give them each $20 – $25 to get what they want.

These are not things they need. It is simply a trip to the store to get something fun!

Our kids get a gift on their birthday and then some at Christmas. Otherwise, they get only what they need.

Spending that $60 – $75 as a family is a lot of fun and they look forward to it nearly as much as I do.

We watch reality shows

Some reality TV is pretty awful, but things such as America’s Got Talent and The Masked Singer are two shows we love!

We set the timer and when the show comes on, we all gather to watch. We will often have popcorn or a snack.

Something as simple as a TV program is a fun way for our family to spend an evening at home together.

Life is more than (saving) money

Life is short. You need to enjoy it.

By indulging in some guilty pleasures, our kids get the chance to see that we can have fun with our money – once our needs are met. It also shows them how to take advantage of all that life has to offer.

— By Tracie Fobes

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