Summertime is full of trips, picnics, outdoor exploration, and sometimes family reunions. Each provides a special experience for you and your family. Whether it is going somewhere you have never been, seeing the beauty of nature around you, or fraternizing with family not seen for a while, your opportunities for wonderful experiences abound.
These experiences are so tempting that we want to make every effort to ensure we get to do them. What this sometimes means is the fun is financed on a credit card, loaned from a friend or family member, or even through a payday lender. Each of these options is going to cost you. It may cost you more money. You may pay a higher emotional price than you thought. Sometimes it is both!
It is a difficult thing to face your limitations, physically or financially. What if you did things differently to take your limitations and work around them?
For instance, if you know a trip is coming up for several months, you can prepare for it by stashing away money using your budget. You can set up a category for summer fun activities. If you can afford to put say $200 a month away, in just six months you can have $1200 worth of fun guilt free! The experience can be bigger if you are able to put more away and/or put it away consistently for longer. If you put the same $200 away consistently for an entire year, you can have $2400 saved.
Imagine what peace you could have if you could say "yes" to taking your family to an amusement park for the day with no worries. What would it mean to you if every time you were asked "can we," you could respond with "yes." No qualms, worries, arguments, or deals. Just "yes."
If you have a family trip planned, big or small, I challenge you to plan for it now. Set aside as much money as you can for the sole purpose of having an amazing time.
Perhaps it's time to own the fun instead of it owning you.