If you have kids, you are in for it now. March Break. Either they are at some type of camp, an extra expense, or you are scrambling to find cheap things to entertain them. While you enjoy spending time with the kids, it can also be stressful if you don’t have the money to fund it.
Next year, it will be different, you promise yourself. And you could be right if you set aside a little fund for next year. Face it, March Break happens every year, at just about the same time. Even $5 a paycheck is $60, $120 or $130 a year, depending on how often you are paid. And $60 can pay for a lot of fun, especially compared with what you have now, which is $0.
Of course the Library has free events, and the Town probably has free events. And if you have gas in the car, you can always do a drive to the Past, preferably their Past. Visit their old school, your old house, things like that. Stop for a chocolate bar on the way there, or home. Amazing how popular this sort of thing is.
But, if you are just too tired to sort through the good and the bad, further sifted by age group, you’re probably reaching for your credit card for movies, meals out, or ski lessons. Stop! This is short-term ease for long-term pain. Think it through to the end: the credit card bill comes in a few days. A higher balance at that awful interest rate. Less money for everything else down the road. More stress, and questionable role modelling for the kids.
So what do you do if you haven’t been able to save a March Break fund, though you plan to in the future? First, say a prayer. You will need all the Help you can get. Then ask the kids what they’d like to do during the week. One of my buddies asked his kids. The older girl wanted to play a board game with the whole family. The younger boy wanted to walk outside at night with everyone. See? Who knows what they’re thinking.
If you don’t have kids, how are you going to entertain yourself if you have this time off? If you don’t have a Fund, and so can’t head off to Florida, or a winter getaway, here is how you can have an enjoyable break and not break the bank: make one plan for one event with a friend, or even by yourself, preferably late in the week. A meal , or a movie can be low-cost, and the anticipation of the fun event will carry you while you are doing chores. Next paycheck, put a looney or a twooney or $5 in an envelope marked March Break. You’ll smile every time you do this. And next year, you’ll have a juicy fund ready for a financially stress-free, good-time March Break.
Get compatible with your income.