Being Grateful - Journey to Saving

Being Grateful: Thirty-Eighth Edition

I hope you’re all enjoying the weekend so far! This week went by so fast, but I think being on vacation makes the days go by quicker. It feels like we just got here! It doesn’t help that we’ve all been confused with what day it is, since we normally visit my parents on Friday. At least it does feel like the weekend today.

It seems like a decent amount of people took vacation around the same time as we did, so if you did, I hope you enjoyed it!

being grateful

We have a winner…

R told me a week or so ago that prizes are raffled off at this particular company outing. I didn’t really think much of it; neither of us knew how many people would be there, or the prizes offered.

But I ended up getting a text from R: Holy sh!t, I just won a 40″ TV!!!

I went through a lot of reactions here. At first, I was thinking no way!, then I squealed, I turned around and told my parents, and then texted him back: !!!!!! (Great text, right? I thought it appropriately conveyed my excitement.)

A part of me is conflicted and thinks we don’t need another TV. We’re two people. One TV is enough – we’re lucky that we enjoy the same shows. This also goes against my less is more mentality. But at the end of the day, it was free, R was happy, and we have space for it in the guest room.

The outing – free food!

Being Grateful: Vacation!I actually got to go to part of the company outing! I hadn’t been planning on going since it was an exclusive company outing (and involved golfing), but news came the day before that it was fine to bring me to the “socializing” part, which involved going to a restaurant and getting free food.

The entire time, I couldn’t help but think how cool it was that the company had organized this. Really, they had gotten sponsors to pay for it, but still. I think that when company outings are done correctly, they can provide a huge boost to morale and a much needed break from the norm.

Everyone was really laid back and I enjoyed putting faces to the names of R’s coworkers. It was clear that they were all thrilled to be there as opposed to at work! Hard not to be, when they basically enjoyed free beer all day.

Free haircut

This was pretty amusing to me. I’ve been asking R to try and cut my hair for a few weeks, but he keeps saying he’s too afraid of messing something up.

Being Grateful: Happy CatI was going to ask my dad, as he actually has prior experience cutting hair, but due to an incident back in 6th grade where he gave me a haircut I didn’t like, he refused. (In his defense, he gave me the cut I asked for, I just didn’t like how it looked!)

So my mom stepped in without hesitation. Go figure. She’s cut my dad’s hair before, and at this point, I didn’t really care all too much how it turned out. I just wanted a trim! And that’s what she did. I had to fix it up a little, but overall, it came out well enough to hold off on getting it styled differently. A less expensive month, perhaps?

I’ll also be cutting R’s hair either today or tomorrow. I’m seriously jealous of the rate at which his hair grows. He needs it cut at least once a month. It grows at least 2″ in-between cuts.

Being here

There’s a few parts to this. First, I’m being grateful that I’m even able to do this right now. If I was working at a traditional job, chances are I wouldn’t have been able to take three days off after just starting. Having this kind of flexibility is really nice right now.

Second, in a way, I’m grateful my parents chose such a good spot to retire in! While it’s heavily populated by tourists in the summer, their community is private and on a secluded road, so it’s very peaceful here. But if you want a taste of the beach, it’s 15 minutes away. Best of both worlds.

Being Grateful: Cat in the KitchenThird, I know R is grateful for the time off and break from work. He hasn’t taken a day off in a little over a year, since he started working with his current company. He still has a few more days to use, so we’ll probably be making a few extended weekend getaways.

Lastly, I was really nervous about bringing the cats back here, but I’m so glad they pretty much adjusted and are enjoying it! Our orange one is “back home,” loving the outdoors in her little basket. The kitten, not so much, but she has a special perch here, which cracks me up (yes, she’s on top of the cabinets in the kitchen).

They did resist getting into their carriers at first, and the kitten was quite noisy throughout the first hour of the trip, but thankfully she settled down after that. So if we ever have to go away for more than a weekend, we know we can bring them along, which is a relief.

Our plans for the rest of the weekend include relaxing, hoping that it doesn’t rain too much, and possibly baking some yummy cookies.

What are you being grateful for this week? Have you ever been to a company sponsored event? Have you received a frugal haircut recently? Do you bring your pets on trips when possible?

Erin M.

Erin is a personal finance writer and virtual assistant who loves talking about money and how to use it as a tool to get what you want out of life. When she's not obsessing over numbers or working (which is rare), she can be found messing around in Photoshop, laughing at her cat, watching YouTube videos, playing video games, chair dancing, or any random combination of the above.

44 thoughts on “Being Grateful: Thirty-Eighth Edition

  1. Love the kitty in a basket! And the one on the kitchen cabinets! We are the beneficiaries of several company-sponsored events through Mr. FW’s work every year and I agree, they’re amazing. They always include free food and some sort of activity (like bowling or a baseball game), which we really enjoy since we never pay for that type of stuff on our own.

    I need a haircut so badly right now–it’s neglectfully long and shaggy. I want Mr. FW to cut it, but he’s nervous. I buzz his hair, but I know mine is a little more complicated. Did your mom use any special techniques?
    Mrs. Frugalwoods recently posted: Weekly Woot & Grumble: Take a Walk & Stay HomeMy Profile

    1. That’s awesome! It’s definitely a great perk to have. I used to work as support in a sales environment, so whenever the sales guys had a great month, we would all get taken out to go bowling. It was fun!

      That’s exactly the situation I was in. I’m pretty sure it was about a year since my last cut. I don’t think she did anything special – she just combed it normally, brought it all to the back, and cut in a straight line. After, I brought my hair to the front to make sure the lengths were even on both sides. I know that Ashley made a good video about it here – I might try her technique next time.

  2. Awww, I love the kitty picture! It is so nice your parents live so close to the beach, too! What a bonus!

    I really wish my company did socializing events like R’s! Ours used to, apparently before I started, but they cut them out due to ‘the budget’, and now the only events we have are cookies and water during the work day a few days before Christmas. You’re not even encouraged to bring your spouse (because, you know, it’s at like 2 p.m….) :-/ I’m not bitter… haha :)

    Congrats on the free TV! That is definitely something to be grateful for!
    Melissa recently posted: Networking for IntrovertsMy Profile

    1. It is quite the bonus, even if we don’t always take advantage of it! I’m hoping to more in the fall when there’s less people there. The water is like a sauna so hopefully it’ll still be warm.

      Aw, that stinks! One company I worked for did have a really nice Christmas party where we could invite our significant others, which was nice. It’s just a good way of showing that the company cares! Not making room for it in the budget is doing the opposite.


    1. Don’t be too jealous; I’m lazy and keep my hair wavy, so I have a very basic cut right now. No layers or angles like I’m used to =). Thanks!

  3. Loving the kitty pictures. Our cats used to go up on top of the kitchen cabinets too. It’s nearly impossible to get them down from it, so I just went with it. The kitten has beautiful markings (I think that’s the closest up I’ve seen them that I can remember).

    Congrats on the tv, and a nice break from everything :)
    Alicia recently posted: Credit Card 2 is GONE!My Profile

    1. Thanks! She can’t get up to our cabinets at the apartment, and I think it’s kind of funny that she acts like an overlord while up there, so we let it go, too. Plus she’s out of everyone’s way. I definitely fell in love with her markings, especially when she was a little furball.

    1. Thanks! It was pretty crazy; I wasn’t expecting him to win anything at all. Apparently they had at least 10-15 prizes for around 45 people.

  4. I am happy that your cats are good travelers! The orange one seems to be in pure bliss in the basket :)
    With a company I am contracted with (I used to be a former employee), they go out of their way to really spoil their employees through a variety of events. I am very fortunate to still benefit from these perks whenever I’m back in Mtl. Free T.V. whohoo! Good idea to put it in the guest room.
    Kassandra recently posted: Investing In YourselfMy Profile

    1. She was in the basket all day yesterday, even through the rain!

      That’s awesome. I think more companies need to see the value in offering fun perks like events to look forward to. What’s better than having motivated employees?

  5. Wow congrats on the new TV!!! That is super exciting. My last job used to have awesome Christmas parties. The alcohol and food were endless and it was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone. My new company is not nearly as generous in this respect but I guess you win some and loose some.

    This week I am thankful for my family. We’ve been hanging out a lot recently and just enjoying each other’s company. It’s been a nice summer that way.
    Liz recently posted: Our Student Loan StoryMy Profile

    1. Thanks! Christmas parties seem to be pretty popular. I think my office offset costs by going to a “joint” party held by one hall, but for any offices that wanted to sign up. We were on the smaller side, so it worked out.

      That’s great! I’ve definitely been grateful that we’ve been able to see my parents this summer now that we’re down here.

  6. Congrats on the win!! Maybe you can sell your old one? Or hey, keep it! I do think it’s worth it for companies to put some effort into a year outing or holiday party. I really do think it can boost morale. I’ve been pretty lucky with companies I used to work for. They had some great holiday parties. Right now I’m grateful to be felling better and getting back to workouts, also for the free Jimmy Buffet concert on the beach last night which turned into an impromptu dance party after.

    1. I agree – it’s definitely worth spending a little money to treat your employees once in a while and show them that they’re appreciated.

      I’m so glad to hear you’re feeling well again!!

    1. Aw, that’s great! One of R’s coworkers actually just moved into our apartment complex, and offered to watch them if we go away again, so I’m thankful to have that option now.

      That’s great! I’m sure she’ll have fun there. I still remember my kindergarten class!

    1. Haha, there were SO many times my boyfriend came back from the barber with a bad haircut. I figured I could at least try to do better. I definitely wouldn’t let him shave his head, either. You should find some tutorials; I followed one and it made everything a lot easier.

    1. That was going to be my next step, as there’s a few beauty schools around here. If it were completely up to me, I probably would sell it, but since R won it, he gets the final say.

    1. Thanks! Hair is such a delicate topic, isn’t it? My hair was so long I figured if anything, I could rush to get it fixed if need be. Even after so many times of cutting R’s hair, I’m still pretty nervous about how it will turn out.

  7. In one of my previous jobs, we had corporate sponsored vacations for top sales people once a year. I remember the first time I qualified for one and it was to the Four Seasons at Nevis. I was so excited that I could bring hubby and we had the best time. We went to a number of others after that, and it was always a great opportunity to both travel but have to only pay for one airfare. I miss those trips, but I don’t miss that company. Now I guess I just have to grow my own company to the point of success that I create my own corporate trips. :-)
    Shannon @ Financially Blonde recently posted: Music Mondays – Least ComplicatedMy Profile

    1. That sounds pretty awesome, and a great incentive for employees! I wouldn’t mind paying for one airfare in that situation, either. I’m sure you’ll be able to grow your company to that point – or at the very least, travel around for speaking gigs.

  8. I hope you guys had a great weekend :)

    I usually cut my own hair, opting to pay someone to do it about once a year, either before a vacation or a job interview. But I’ve never been on a company outing, save for a departmental lunch or something. And I’ve definitely never won a 40″ TV! That’s pretty awesome!
    Ryan @ Impersonal Finance recently posted: new blogs and some motivation.My Profile

    1. Thanks Ryan, I hope you did, too!

      I think that’s what I might do – get it professionally cut once or twice a year and DIY trims in-between.

      We definitely weren’t expecting anything to come of the raffle; to be honest, I had forgotten about it until my boyfriend texted me!

    1. Maybe we should start a club? Ha. I did have a hand-me-down TV previously, but it was a monstrosity that wasn’t worth the hassle of moving.

  9. Maybe after the novelty wears off you can sell one of the TV’s and put the money towards your debt. Wait and see how much it is worth to you. Can I ask you a question about R’s vacation? You said he hasn’t had time off for over a year, but didn’t he just start a new job when you guys moved? Did he have unused vacation at his old job that he was just paid out for?

    Love your kitties. My sister just got two eight week old kittens, one orange and one calico (mostly white with patches of grey and orange).
    debt debs recently posted: Sticky Business: A busy bee ‘s work is never doneMy Profile

    1. I wouldn’t be opposed to it, but R seems to like the idea of having 2 TV’s for some reason. I’ve had my TV for a little over 3 years now, and it’s still going strong!

      I love your questions Debs :P. R started working with his current company in April of last year, and when we moved, it was because he received a promotion. He’s in a completely different department now (one that doesn’t exist back home), but still with the same company.

      Thanks! Aww, I used to have two calicos. They’re so cute!

    1. Awesome things to be grateful for, especially the last one =). I’m sure only positive things will come of it (and it looks like they already have)!

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