Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Planning For A Rainy Day

Dave Ramsey teaches to plan for a rainy day in the form of an emergency fund. An emergency fund begins as $1,000 set aside for the day when the car won’t start, your little one needs stitches and insurance won’t cover it, etc. I was thinking about this today as I was cleaning up our lunch mess and I began to think of other ways I could be preparing for the rainy days that are sure to come: days when I am sick and can barely get out of bed, those early days of pregnancy when I feel like the rug has gotten jerked out from under me, the days of winter when I have multiple kids sick and all I do is rock babies and clean up throw up all day. Gross, but reality.

A side note: last Saturday my van wouldn’t start. We got all ready to go to Dallas for the Asian festival downtown. We are beginning a study of Japan and dh thought it would be neat to go to this festival. So, we got the entire family ready and got into the van. Dh started the van and it died. This happened again, and again, and again. Dh would not give up. We did this for about 20 minutes, sitting in the garage. By that time, a few kids were whining and starting to bicker amongst themselves. DD13 was cracking up and I was beginning to get impatient. To make a LONG story short, thankfully I had that emergency fund in place because yesterday I paid a bill of $436.58 for a new fuel pump. If we didn’t have the money set aside, we would have been up a creek.

Also, I was in bed yesterday afternoon and evening with some kind of yucky stomach virus and I was wishing I had done some “rainy day/sick day” planning to make things easier on my family.

Okay, back to my rainy day planning.

The areas that go to the wayside when rainy days hit are

1) Laundry

2) Meals

3) Meal cleanup

One thing I can think of to make meals less of a problem is having meals in the freezer so dh or dd13 can pop one of those in the oven, make a salad and a pitcher of tea and voila! Dinner is ready!

Meal cleanup and laundry are very challenging, especially if we’re talking about an extended amount of rainy day time, like 2 weeks of the flu, or 12 weeks of morning sickness. : ) One idea is to put 2 children in charge of meal cleanup and rotate it weekly during these times. I can do the same with laundry. That sounds like it will work. I will have to make charts to tell them exactly what to do so that it will get clean up well. I don’t know about your kids but mine DO NOT clean the way I want them to unless I am standing over them and then they still don’t act like they know what to do even when I am telling them what to do.

Doesn’t it sound like a fun home we live in? It actually is fun most of the time. Chore time is not fun for them or for me. But the results are very fun for me. Sanity is fun!!

I am going to try to take some time to make charts for them so that I can pull them out when I need to. Also, I am going to try to make double meals a couple of times a week and stick one in the freezer. I am going to take out the extra meal and freeze it before we eat or else it will get eaten, too. If my kids and hubby see extra food sitting on the counter or stove, they will eat it!! I am also going to pack dh’s lunch for the next day before we eat. That way, he will be sure to have a nice meals to take with him instead of having to eat pb and honey. Lately there have been no leftovers at all. Last night dd13 cooked dinner. She grilled 5 chicken breasts, made brown rice, and backed broccoli (drizzle broccoli with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes~ thanks Annie for the idea!). After dinner all that was left was a little bit of brown rice! My kids are beginning to eat like people have always told me they would as they grew. It’s true! Bigger kids eat more food. Wow, what a concept!

I am going to stop rambling now. Hopefully this little post will help me get some planning done so that next time we have a rainy or sick day, we will be prepared!

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