Vacation VS Home Office

on January 5, 2014 in Musings

That’s me in the middle of the backseat!

A few years ago, I left my husband at home with the kids for three days while I went to Disneyland with my best girlfriend.  It was one of the most wonderful vacations I have ever treated myself to.

Money was tight but I picked up some extra work proofreading and editing papers for my friends and co-workers.  In the six months we had to prepare for our trip, we each put away $500.  We flew into California on an early morning business class flight.  We stayed at a cheap motel that included a buffet breakfast in the room rate.  At Disneyland, we ate cheap, shared everything, and had a terrific time.

I’m ready to do it again.  I’m craving a vacation where I can run and scream and laugh and dance in the street with a pirate again.  Tim doesn’t love Disneyland as much as I do, but I’m hoping I can persuade him to go with me the next time.

However, our financial situation is even tighter than ever before.  Can I justify  a vacation when there’s so many other places we could use the money?  There are repairs to be made around the house.  The dogs need their shots.  And I’ll soon have a room I can remodel into a home office.

I dream of a place to write with a door that closes.  I need a place to spread out my notes without fearing that the cats will rearrange them or the dogs will use them for chew toys.  I may want to type without a cat on my lap, or I may just want to allow the cats to take turns invading my sanctuary.  My collection of books should be on shelves, not in boxes.

The good news is that I don’t have to justify anything.  I deserve a vacation and a home office.  Just as I deserve love simply because I exist, I deserve a vacation and a home office simply because I work hard.  The necessities will be taken care off and I can save money too.

What I need is a plan.

A PLAN plus A GOAL equal SUCCESS.  I can say that I’m going to put $10 into savings every Friday, but without a checklist to remind me and a goal to work toward, I probably won’t do it.

This year, one of my friends sent me a simple plan that would be a relatively painless way to save.  The 52 week Saving Plan will put $1,378 away in a single year and I never have to save more than $52 in a single week.

Each week, you put the number of that week of the year into a jar or savings account. For example, the first week of 2014, you deposit $1.  The second week, you deposit $2.  The last week of the year, you deposit $52.

Here is a printable spreadsheet with a running total.  52 weeks of Savings

I am using a Savings Account for my plan, so I can earn interest on my money.  And I know that December is the most expensive month of the year, so I’m planning to put away those higher amounts in March instead.  I printed out the spreadsheet  and hung it on my bulletin board.  I cross off the individual deposits as I make them.

Since it’s still the first week of the year, I may start a second savings account, and go backward (saving $52 in week one, and $1 in week fifty-two).  Hmmm… then I could have my office and my vacation too.  YES!  That’s what I’ll do.

I’ll be running amok in the happiest place on Earth AND coming home to my very own home office.

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