I live in Canada. Black Friday was not always something that happened here. We used to only have the Boxing Day sales every year. But, with the world being more socially connected, Canadians decided to try this Black Friday thing. We have sales. The purpose in starting it here was to help the Canadian economy by giving shoppers the opportunity to find deals and sales here at home, and in theory it makes sense.
The timing is good. If you are able to get your Christmas shopping and major household purchases done on Black Friday, you stand to save a good amount of money. There is a lot of hype about Black Friday. Now it is going through right until Tuesday. Sure, I like a good sale as much as the next person , but when you live on a budget, it is hard to plan for such things.
There are times I think about shopping. I have already written that I can be an impulse shopper. These days it applies mostly to food. I have been following a plan, and making my own meals to eat healthier. When I make food for the week it is called prep cooking. In a household of 2 with only me on plan, I do the prep cooking on a much smaller scale than I would like to. One or two recipes a week gets my breakfasts and lunches ready so I am able to stay on track and have a quicker exit to go to work in the mornings. When I work hard at it, it works. I have seen the results from the changes I have been making. It is encouraging to see it work, and frustrating when it gets stalled or goes in reverse. I have been stuck in a rut this past month. It is that time of year, when the undiagnosed seasonal depression kicks in.
I could have seasonal depression. I do get gloomy in the winter. I still go through the motions, go to work, eat, sleep, repeat, but I don’t have a lot of energy in the winter. I am also terrified of falling on ice outside. I have a lot of padding built in right now to break the fall if it happens, but it is not something I have had good experiences with. So if I could hibernate, wake up for Christmas and New Years, and them resume hibernation until the spring comes, that would be OK with me. Maybe stretch my legs and get a box of chocolates in February, you get the idea.
Did I do any Black Friday shopping today? I worked for most of those shopping hours. After work, I came home and made supper. There are leftovers, and I am trying a new recipe this weekend. There was a bit of planning in supper, because the spaghetti sauce will be an ingredient in the casserole I am making tomorrow. Right after supper we did go down the road to the grocery store. When I climbed in the car this morning, I was told by my husband to be ready to go get groceries when he got home from work. He heard a Black Friday ad on the radio while he was warming up the car, for the grocery store. There is a sale on cheese and chicken. So we got our groceries tonight. Sans list, free style. Which means there will be this or that needed between now and next payday. But the groceries are done, and a sale on chicken and cheese makes us both happy.
We keep telling ourselves, if we work real hard, and keep paying down our bills, maybe next year we can get to experience The Black Friday shopping in Canada (or get in on the Boxing Day sales). I don’t know if there will ever be a time that we will be able to do it. But we keep working hard anyway, because we have to keep paying the bills. They don’t pay themselves, and they won’t just go away.
What would I buy if I had the money? A new car, it is hard to manage with one car and two people. A new fridge and stove. A new bedroom set, we haven’t got that grown up purchase done yet. Cell phones, yes, you read that right, we do not have cell phones because it is an expense we cannot afford. Peppermint plants for every room ( I read they keep spiders, mice and bugs away). Clothes are a given. Sneakers for sure. A new purse and some new shoes. Make up. But something I really want is more of those glass containers that I could store my prep cooking in. We have some, but I was thinking today that if we could Black Friday some more of those, it would be beneficial for the days that I FEEL like prep cooking, I could do more and have some food frozen for the weeks I don’t feel like it.
At least the cheese and chicken freeze well. Would I buy more of both tomorrow? In a heartbeat. I go through a fair bit of cheese and chicken with this plan, and I have to have the ingredients on hand for when I want to cook. At least when we took the groceries in there seemed to be a decent amount. It is expensive to eat healthy, and I am trying really hard to improve my whole life. It is not easy, but it has to be done, and I am the only one that can do it. I hate coming home from the grocery store and having a fairly large amount of money spent and only 2 bags of food to show for it. It irritates the Scottish half of me. If I am going to spend money, I want to feel I got my money’s worth. Today that worked out OK. Maybe next year we can start working on the want list instead of scrambling to cover the needs list. Maybe next year.
I hope if you are reading this you were able to enjoy The Black Friday events on either side of the Canada US border that you got some deals that will make you happy because it was something practical that you really needed, or will use. The cheese and chicken were very practical for us, and will be put to good use. It will help me get back on track, and that is more important to me than any sale, because it is going to help me achieve my healthy lifestyle goals. There is no price tag on my health.
I do not agree it is expensive to eat healthily…Yes, if you are buying a lot of cheese or other expensive foods but cheese isn’t neccessary to tasty, healthy eating. Healthy eating also isn’t boring without cheese there are so many other ingredients that can be used to add flavour. ☺
When it costs less to buy fast food than a salad, I have a point. I do not know about the prices of food in your neck of the woods, but when I go to the Diabetes clinic they ask if I need assistance to buy healthy food. You can spend time going through the grocery flyers and buying things that are frozen or canned when they are not in season. Part of the reason it is so expensive for us is because it does take time to find the sale prices, make a list, go to 3 or 4 locations, adding to the gas used in the car, and then preparing the meals also takes time. I know it is worth it, but even a loaf of bread has me paying $4 a loaf (it lives in my freezer) and regular white bread is on sale if it is under $3 here. Meat is expensive. Setting up for THM cooking was a bit out of the ordinary to get going. Now we have staples and it isn’t so bad. (Except that he isn’t eating the same things I am making) But the prices of food at the grocery store are continually climbing in Canada. I do go to the Farmers Market year round, and try to save while buying locally. In terms of what I am learning about becoming an entrepreneur time and energy count in this equation. The prices at the grocery stores are outrageous. At least here in Canada they are.
Are not salaries commensurate with prices though? which as a general rule they are. I also know what it’s like when you have someone who doesn’t eat what you do..It can be a bit of a nightmare and time can’t it? I have learnt though that driving round to save money actually doesn’t and do one shop one time and another the next but of course there is always something you can’t get in both isn’t there.?I grow what I can and swop between neighbours which works quite well and have started to make my own bread and it is much easier than I thought it would be and I use instant yeast which again saves time and effort. It helps when you can if you can build up a little store cupboard but not always easy I know and it takes time ….. It does sound like you are up against it with high prices….but you seem to be going in the right direction.
I am in the 99% as the world says nowadays, so no, my salary is not enough. Combined with my husband’s salary, it is still not enough. When you live from paycheque to paycheque, there is never enough money to cover all of your needs, and the wants stay out of reach.
I am sorry to hear that 🙂
It is what it is. We are working hard to make things better.