The cookies are gone.
The Creche is tucked away.
Christmas decorations are down.
Santa's still hanging around, though. Is he looking over my shoulder to see my frugality fall apart? BLAST! I must confess, I was backsliding through the holiday season with the rush-rush to everywhere.
But wait. What did I backslide on? I used plastic wrap for my yule logs. No, nothing I purchased, just what I still have after years of trying to use it up. OK, should I chuck into the trash unused?
What about the plastic spork I took because I had failed to bring my own utensil to a work party? That is in my drawer, being reused and rewashed until it breaks.
Well, I did purchase fast food the other day for the kids as we dashed to the theme park (where everything is too expensive to buy). It was all wrapped in paper and the cups were waxed....only one took a lid and straw. Though with my kiddie meal I asked not to receive the toy, six miles down the road when I could reach in for the tepid fries I discovered they had NOT honored my request. The toy remains on the front passenger floor: a reminder of why I should never order fast food again.
There will always be times when it is much more challenging to remain frugal. My rule of thumb is to always think of the repercussions of my decisions: Those immediate and those longer-term. The plastic wrap was already produced long ago and was something I took responsibility for after helping clean out a friend's kitchen. She had 4 open rolls of the stuff and never cooks. I try to use it respective of health and simply wrap cookie dough in it to hand out as gifts (the yule logs) or freeze. The plastic utensil, well, that is a bad choice all around, so I'll just carry the guilt for that one.
Fast food. Having not purchased any for years it served as a poignant reminder of why I should never purchase it again. It also served to fill the bellies of 4 hungry people before we entered a theme park at which we would NOT purchase any food.
I can always come up with excuses for this and that, but the point is to keep analyzing: What can I fix? What shouldn't I beat myself up for? It's a never-ending game, in which there will always be more obstacles, but we can only improve.