Whatcha got, 35?

My birthday was last week. While I welcomed it, and enjoyed it, I have yet to embrace the 35ness that is now me. While I’m not necessarily fighting getting older, I am definitely not acknowledging it outright.

The other 364 days of the year find me like most of the rest of you: dealing w/a family and work, school, bills, tiredness, seasonal depression. I, unfortunately, seem to be plagued as well by shoe stores that speak to me telepathically. They channel their best ESP-having, shoe buying demon and have him or her whisper my name over and over about new boots until I respond by showing up at Macy’s unsure of how I got there.

Isn’t age supposed to enhance one’s frugality? Shouldn’t I be smarter now, better at sidestepping the gimmicks? I think “shouldn’t I” for a lot of things, though. “Shouldn’t I” be done with school by now? “Shouldn’t I” be making more money? “Shouldn’t I” have traveled to Africa already? I’m not the if I coulda woulda shoulda type (too often). But when it comes to saving, I can do it…as long as I can spend at the same time.

I am, though, starting to realize I have more ability to be selective. I can remember a not so distant time when I would buy just to buy. I’d still have clothes at the end of summer that had tags on them going into fall. Now, I am more careful. That doesn’t mean I don’t still get close to falling off the saving wagon. And with our economy right now, who wants to buy shoes when the gas bill’s due (ok, admittedly, I do still want to buy shoes, I just don’t).

Hopefully, I will be able to get it together before my girls come of age. The oldest is already a shopaholic (which she quickly learns is not fun with no money). I want them to recognize necessity purchases (one should never find oneself debating between the new shirt and, say, groceries). But, how can I do that for them when I’m still struggling to maintain healthy spending habits myself? Life is haaaaaaaaaard, man! And 35…you’re not making it any easier.

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