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Is it just me or was Winter totally killing us only a few weeks ago and now we’re baking in spring almost summertime heat?! That happened fast.
Summers are tough on finances around here, like really tough. There’s a ton of different reasons: kids home from school bring extra daycare costs, more activities that cost money, and then there’s all the extra food…
Did you know that kids eat five times as much over summer vacation as they do during the school year? Trust me, it’s true. Science told me so.
Apparently, while they’re eating they’re also going in and out of the house because why not AIR CONDITION THE WHOLE OUTDOORS?!
All my working parents, can we talk about that extra summer daycare bill OR the cost of signing your dumplings up for a million camps?
Let’s all collectively hug our wallets and cry… and then read the rest of this post so I can give you some ideas to help you save some cash.
Get a Summer Sinking Fund
This is kind of a proactive tip so you might not have time to really reap the benefits this summer, however, there’s always next year!
I personally set a sinking fund every year for our summer daycare because now that all three kids are in school full time this is our big ticket item. It will be a few more years before our hooligans are old enough to be home on their own, so daycare in some form is here to stay.
Daycare isn’t the only expense your sinking fund can cover. Maybe it’s time to take a look at what all your family spent money on last year and take those numbers to help you determine what you’ll need for this summer. Sometimes budgets aren’t about restricting what you spend but more about realistically planning for what you know darn well you’re going to end up buying.
Make a Summer Bucket List
We try to create a summer bucket list every year and take all our grand plans and put them on a giant poster. I bring home a poster board and the whole family writes ideas, draws pictures, sets goals… it’s awesome.
We hang it up in our dining room and get to cross things off as we complete them. Honestly, it looks like a very random hodge podge of children’s art and poor handwriting but WE FREAKING LOVE IT!!!
My kids talk about this list all year long. We think of things all winter that we plan to stick on there when warm weather rolls around. There are free ideas, expensive ideas, ideas we have random gift cards for. It’s our collective brain in one place and it works for us.
This bucket list also helps me budget both our money and our time. I like to search our weeks and weekends and pull out time slots where we can fit a fun thing in and then start saving for it. If you make one, please tag me!! If you need ideas on fun things to add check out my list of spring break activities, they’re fun for summer too.
Set a Savings Goal
So, here’s where the free printables come in, I know you’ve been dying to see what I’ve been working on.
Setting a small savings goal can be all around motivating for the whole family. Maybe you’re committing to moving a certain amount per day or week to savings or maybe you are earning a little extra each day. Either way, I have something cute for you to get saving and start tracking!
Hamburger Savings Tracker
Here’s a hamburger themed savings tracker. Because who doesn’t LOVE grilling in the summer?! Burgers just scream summertime eating to me, and you can color in the 24 condiments bottles as you hit your mini goals.
Popsicle Savings Tracker
There’s also a popsicle themed savings tracker because popsicles = life when it’s a million degrees out. Not only are they cold, fresh, and great dipped in a glass of wine, they’re also here to save your budget. So please, do not try and tell me popsicles aren’t the best thing EVER.
That’s a wrap on my ideas for how to survive the summer without completely annihilating your wallet. The hot days are here (for most of us) so I wish you good luck on the next few months. Fingers crossed your kids eat moderately, keep the AC inside the house, whining is at a minimum, and your wine stash never runs dry.
Tag me on Instagram with your savings tracker progress, I can’t wait to cheer you on!