Thursday, May 30, 2013

For Vacation

It was time to empty the Lucky Cat over the weekend. This is the change I was carrying around in the wallet. The quarters never go into the Lucky Cat because they can't get out the other end without major help. (Yes, I'm aware of the image I have just implanted in your mind. *snicker*) When the nickles, dimes and pennies one is trying to stick into the bank fall back out due to lack of space, it's time to empty the bank.

I last emptied the cat a little over a year ago. I don't carry much in the way of cash. Most every place takes debit cards now so it's easier to whip out the debit than to carry cash. This is particularly true when expense checks and my salary are automatically deposited into my account. I remember the days when dad would cash his check and bring home a wad of bills for mom. In fact, I can remember when dad would simply endorse the back of the check and mom would take it to the bank. Everyone knows everyone else in a small town so her depositing his check and getting cash back was nothing out of the ordinary. I wonder if you can still do that in a small town.

Mom would take the cash and pull out a bunch of envelopes. On these envelopes were written all of the items for which we would need money during the course of a month. She put a set amount into each envelope and that envelope went into a box. Then, when it came time for lunch money for school, for instance, she'd pull out the appropriate envelope and send the amount with us to school. If there was an emergency, she'd do some math and pull money out across the board, making notes on the front of the envelope. Once the envelope front was covered with notes, dates and amounts, a new envelope was procured and the old one was saved until taxes had been done. Perhaps there were easier ways of budgeting but this worked for mom.

I shook out all the change inside the Lucky Cat and dropped it into the larger bank where I save my coins.

A year ago, I mentioned how I was within an inch of the top and would, possibly, need to take this in for counting. I think this added another half inch of coinage to the bank. It's getting heavy. I'm tempted to see just how much I've managed to save. When you don't walk around with bills in your wallet, accumulating change is much harder to do.

I thought about mom's budget system. There's probably close to $100 in change here. I could use that to start my own envelope system. A bit here for the gas bill. A bit here for groceries. A bit in this envelope for gas. A year ago, I contemplated using the debit card just for gas and groceries. I don't remember how I did. Did I actually follow through with that?

I'm going to keep dropping change into the Lucky Cat and use all of this for a vacation to see Carole this year. Circumstances prevented me from going anywhere last year. I miss my daughter and I want to see how she's doing. I think this is a good use of a long saved amount.

Beverage:  English Breakfast tea


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