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Blog: If Your Money Ain't Happy, Ain't Nobody Happy
If Your Money Ain't Happy, Ain't Nobody Happy…Are you feeling the "Grinch Pinch?"



Take a sip of your coffee and take a break from the demands of the season for just a few moments. The holidays can make one wore out faster than any other time of the year.  Not to mention the thought of money can make one feel stressed too.  It seems as though most people I've talked to lately feel pushed to the max financially right now.  I feel your pain.  Just last week we had $2700.00 worth of unexpected expenditures we needed to pay…no I'm not kidding.  The fortunate thing is we were able to pay them and hope that we won't be having more of those types of things pop up anytime soon.  Right now probably the smallest things are making you feel stretched.  After all, the dog needs to be groomed because she's getting stinky and you can't have that around the holidays.  The bug's going around and there's an extra doctor bill.  At the worst time the car needs some repairs when you only budget an oil change.  If you are feeling what I call the "grinch pinch" on your money this season please know you're not alone and as you read on take a few more sips of coffee as we try to get through the ups and downs of this together. 
 
The best thing to do during the "grinch pinch" is evaluate what really needs to be paid and what can wait until after the holidays even though it seems urgent.  Maybe you could give the dog a bath and wait for a good grooming till after the holidays.  Don't sweat stuff that is out of your control like going to the doctor or car repairs.  Instead take a mental note that it will be a must for you this next year to have an emergency fund.  If you are single you should have a minimum of $500 in the bank as an emergency fund.  If you are married you should have a minimum of $1000 and if you are married with children you really need to think about having around $1500.  This may seem like a lot but if you think about how much unexpected bills usually are these amounts are substantiated.  Like I mentioned earlier I know what unexpected bills feel like right now and it has made me really have to evaluate what our money needs to be spent on. 
 
It seems like when it rains it pours though.  I need a haircut, my husband and I both have worn out our tennis shoes and need new ones, the baby needs a winter coat, our dog really does need a bath not to mention I still have Christmas shopping to finish.  I have gone looking around at all the Christmas decorations, having a new house makes me want to decorate to the hilt, but I am choosing to say "no" and use what I have and look for some great bargains after the holidays.  In this immediate gratification society it is hard to "wait" for things.  But at times such as these I can either go into great debt to satisfy my urge to splurge or patiently get through this demanding time of year.  I'm there with you and want to try to encourage you that you are not the only one feeling those demands on so many facets including financially.   
 
So enjoy your cup of coffee and try to focus on the things that won't focus you on the "grinch pinch".  If there are things financially that are out of your control, ride the wave for the moment and stay on top of what you can financially control during this time.  It will eliminate the after holiday blues that many experience because of so many urges to splurge.  The best thing I did recently was share with some of my close friends that we were maxed out right now and it was so comforting to know that their families were feeling the same way.  It helped us decide even when we had our Christmas "girls night" to keep our costs to a minimum and are all sticking this thing out together.  We also had supper together this past Friday with our three families to help save the money of going out.  We all contributed to the dinner, let the kids all play and had a great time realizing that we are all going through the financial strain together BUT we can still have fun nonetheless.  I encourage you to do the same.  Don't focus on what you can't do or buy, focus on what you can do or have already to use and focus on getting through without all the financial "scratches".  You deserve the mental break.  Merry Christmas and please try to make sure you have happy holidays.

posted on: 12/5/2007 11:30:00 AM by Triste Horrell
category: Finances


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If Your Money Ain't Happy, Ain't Nobody Happy


by Triste Horrell

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About Triste:

Being an organizing expert makes one want to be a "showroom" in all areas of life. However reality can hit hard when you're a mother of small children and a military wife and own an organzing business. Of course Triste would like to have a picture perfect Better Home and an even Better Garden. Throw a Pottery Barn in the backyard for exceptional creative time to become the wiz-woman for all the ideas and inventions that the world could not live without. But Triste has settled on the fact of telling herself "I can be perfect in my mind and no one can mess up my space there!" In reality Triste is very self-motivated and has true business accomplishments like having SYSTEMIZE since 1997, the first home and business organizing firm in the state of South Carolina. She has been repeatedly recognized in her Greenville, SC area for her organizing expertise and makeovers on local NBC and FOX news, Greenville News, local magazines such as Greenville Magazine and Upstate Parent and NPR radio. She has turned people's lives around by focusing on what she calls the "four building blocks of being organized" consisting of space, time, financial and personal. This is even represented in her business logo. "That's what I'm in business for, turning people's lives around!" Also applying her popular 3 Steps to Systemize have not only organized her clients but KEPT them organized for years.

Triste's Website:

www.systemize4u.com


Downtime Activities

  • Reading Magazines
  • Spending time at our cottage
  • Keeping our Westie pretty
  • Putting tealights around after the kids are in bed
  • Adventures with my awesome hubby
  • Making microwave smores...just for me
    1 graham cracker, broken in half 1 small piece of chocolate 1 big marshmellow On one side of cracker put piece of chocolate and marshmellow on top. Place in microwave and heat for approx. 17 seconds (while cooking replace marshmellow on top of chocolate if needed). Put other half of cracker on top, eat and enjoy and watch out for oozing chocolate!

My Organizing Tool-Box

  • Time - Outlook
    This is a great way to keep papers off the desk and track where you need to go, task list, jot down quick notes on the virtual "post-its, keep up with contacts in the virtual Rolodex
  • Personal Finances - Quicken
    This simple yet practical program keeps your bank accounts in tact...did I mention simple?!
  • Business Finances - QuickBooks
    I have used this program for years and have set many clients up on it. It is a must for keeping track of business transactions and keeping tax time easy...push a few buttons and out come the reports, your done and your tax preparer loves you.
  • Space - turntables
    I love these things! You can put them in cabinets, the fridge, garage, and closets. They are inexpensive, easy to find and available at any discount store and you can even find fancier ones. If you are not sure what they are, they are the white (or other fancier kinds) and spin around like a lazy susan, you can have a single or double-tier one for spices.
  • Personal - Magazines and Internet
    I love to look at magazines and the internet for good articles on personal development, pictures for decorating inspiration and fun projects to do with my family. I keep my magazine subscriptions to a minimum (3) so I can read them and enjoy each one. I look for things on some of my favorite websites for whatever fancies me at that time.
  • Online Recipe Boxes
    Use these on some of your favorite websites, bring the laptop into the kitchen while the recipe is up and you never have to have the paper clutter. One of my and my husbands favorites is Williams-Sonoma.


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