My unbreakable vow.

So my husband and I have made a vow.  A quite serious vow.  So serious, that our son offered to use a limp straw and his deep knowledge of all things Harry Potter to make it an unbreakable vow.

So what exactly are we promising?  Prepare yourself and shield any young children who might be near the computer screen, it’s quite shocking.

We are not going to eat out for a month.

Indecent, isn’t it?  And we call ourselves good consumers, I mean Americans too.

Here’s the thing.  We need to save more money than what we have been saving.  My entire family is planning a special fun filled vacation in a year or so, my husband has a decent chance of being laid off in the next eighteen months, and one day we actually want to do this thing called retirement.  I hear it’s a blast.

There’s not a lot of things we can cut out of our anorexic budget.  We don’t have cable (HGTV and Bravo, Mommy misses you!), we don’t drink overly priced coffee in swanky shops (plumbers aren’t allowed in swanky shops), and we can’t find a better cell phone contract (as we’re  the only people in the Midwest above the age of 13 that do not have cell phones AT ALL.)

So the only thing we can realistically cut is our dining out portion of the budget.  <Sob, sniffle.>  Which, granted, isn’t a lot, but even a paltry sum is something.

What this means is that I can’t turn to my husband, after a long hard day of canning tomato sauce, teaching multiplication, and cleaning up the toxic mess in the children’s bathroom and say, “Call Pizza Hut, STAT.”  It means I am going to have to be organized,  prepared in advance, and work harder.  It means I’m going to do this whole grown-up parenting stuff without the safety net of McDonald’s.

And it might mean that occasionally I am tempted to call a divorce lawyer.

Tonight would have been a perfect night to order something in.  The children were cranky, the husband was grumpy, the kitchen was messy, and Mommy was lethargic with a capital L.  I so badly wanted to turn to my husband and say, “Please, just go get something.  We can start this insanity tomorrow.”  From the look I saw in his eye, he wanted me to say it too.

But I didn’t.  Instead I made Asian Coleslaw with Seasoned Chicken.  And it was tasty.

But it sure as hell wasn’t convenient.  And the kitchen is even messier now.  Vows suck.

(Incidentally, I have made no such vows about OTHER people taking me out to eat, so if any of you kind, compassionate readers out there want to take me out?  Let me just get my keys.)

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11 Responses to My unbreakable vow.

  1. Amy Pollak says:

    ummm…can your husband maybe cook one meal a week or something? I know that doesn’t work around here either, but I thought I’d throw it out there – you deserve a break! He should at least do the dishes if you cook. Just sayin. 🙂

    • bunkersdown says:

      If I can time it right so the dishwasher is full and clean in the morning, he always empties it for me before he goes to work. Which makes my day start easier and reminds me that he is pretty awesome all said and done. But he may have to start grilling something once a week to preserve my sanity!

  2. Michele says:

    cock pot baby, crock pot! Even though I HATE cleaning it out after the fact! Maybe I will get you guys some of those dollar mcdonalds books that they have around Halloween! I love those things ice cream and french fries my treat!

  3. Time for your kids to learn how to cook. When I swore off buying pizza, my oldest son learned how to make pizza dough so that we could make homemade pizza on a regular basis. The awesomest part is that I don’t have to be the one to do it!

    We had a crazy day, too and I had to remind myself of the same thing. We’re trying to SAVE money, not spend it. So we had canned chicken in chicken salad sandwiches for dinner. It worked and amazingly enough, nobody went away starving to death because I didn’t have time to cook something amazing! Miracles never cease.

    Be strong! You can do it!
    Christy Barnson

  4. Oh man…you are my hero!! I cannot and will not make such a now just 12 days before having a baby!! Maybe someday I will be as brave as you and give it a whirl…..GOOD LUCK!

  5. Nancy says:

    We recently actually had to make a vow to go out to eat on Friday night, and seldom keep it.
    (We were both teachers and raised six kids, all now grown with children of their own.)
    One of us cooks, and the other cleans the kitchen.
    We switch off.
    Let me just say that you AND your children are going to be exponentially healthier.
    Often we make huge salads with very creative ingredients, and crock pots and the freezer are my best friends. When you make soup, just double it, and put it in the freezer. Bake extra potatotoes for potato salad, etc. You will grow to be very creative. Congratulations on your vow.

  6. Amber says:

    I feel your pain. We tried the same thing but eating out is my favorite thing to do. We have cut back but we still go out about once a week.

  7. Sarah says:

    You make me laugh and smile. Good luck. I was in the same boat this week and thankfully Grandpa swooped in and took us out for Chinese.
    I thanked him profusely.

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