The Balancing Act


Budgets.  We all have them (right?), and some of us even stick to them (I can’t relate).  Luckily for me, I married a ‘saver.’  Each month I get an email from my husband.  Attached to the email is an Excel spreadsheet (snore), which I usually avoid opening if possible. I’ve heard that the spreadsheet shows how much we budget for certain spending categories vs. how much we actually spend.  You may have guessed that I’m rarely successful at staying ‘on budget,’ but I am trying to improve.  I’d really hate to get to the point of purchasing gift cards to Nordstrom at the grocery store to disguise the actual clothing expense from my husband (apparently that’s a thing in certain circles – you didn’t hear it from me).

Spending categories potentially on the chopping block (not making any promises):

  • Baby Gap – If I could only put Annabel to work as a Gap model, surely we’d get a discount on clothing?


  • Lush Cosmetics – Just can’t get enough of those bath bombs! I’ve seen recipes online for making your own bath bombs, but we know how I feel about DIY…


  • Home Goods – I could potentially open my own retail store with the amount of stuff I have stored up from this place (decorative pillows are my kryptonite).  Note to self: consider having  a garage sale to support my habit.
  • Amazon – I can have diapers periodically shipped to my door?  Can’t think of a reason not to!
  • Target – This category can’t go away completely, obviously – maybe just scaled back a little bit.

It’s going to be tough, but I guess anything is possible.  Good luck to you, Jeff. XO

The Balancing Act

Clean House / Sanity / Kids

If you’re a friend or family member of mine, you’ve probably been annoyed at one time or another by my urge to keep things clean.  After a good day of house cleaning, I turn into a monster who follows my husband around with the vacuum and gets annoyed when he goes to the kitchen to make himself a sandwich…because I know he’s getting crumbs on the counter.  I’ve changed the password on our laptop to ‘cleanhands?’ so that Jeff can’t claim he forgot to wash up before surfing the web (which usually results in his brown fingerprints all over the pretty white keys).

Now, I’m not sure if  spotting stray drips of water on the floor from across the room is a trait I was born with, or if it is a learned skill, but I’m mature enough to admit that I’ve taken the act of maintaining a clean home to the next level.  At one point I’ve threatened to buy Jeff a pair of Crocs to wear as ‘house shoes,’ on account of the fact that his overly sweaty bare feet leave footprints on our shiny laminate flooring — we’re kind of getting to be like kids who pretend that the floor is hot lava and we’ll get burned if we step on it.

I was sure that once our daughter was born, I’d get over the compulsion to clean my house.  Wrong!  If anything, I’ve gotten a little bit worse.  I’ve recently started hanging plants around the house…to clean the air.   We can’t be breathing dirty air!  You get the picture.

In a recent conversation I had with a friend, she expressed the same frustration over keeping her house clean.  She also has a little one to run around after, and can certainly do without the stress that goes along with constant housekeeping.  She filled me in on a concept I’ve been thinking about a lot lately.

Here it is:

Clean houseSanityKids

Now, you can only have 2!  

Forget about trying to keep your home clean, while also spending meaningful time with your children and still having time to invest on any sort of personal development — whether you’re into yoga, book club, or Bravo TV : ).

As it stands, I’m still wrestling between keeping a clean house and hanging onto my sanity.  Maybe when Annabel learns how to walk I’ll look into a pair of Crocs for her, too…