Monday was our first day back to work/homeschool after our five day break for the Thanksgiving holiday. Since the husband and I both have a weekday off in addition to the weekends, we had Wednesday off in trade of our normal days off, which were holiday days. Something I hadn’t considered about 4 day weeks (instead of 5 shorter days) is the “extra” time off that comes with holidays, but I love it.

The kiddo seriously struggled getting back into the swing of things with school after those five days off, so Monday was a bit (okay, a lot) of a struggle. After we got back that first day, it was definitely better and more “normal,” but Monday was tough. I mentioned to my mom that the day was hard for the kiddo, and she responded that the last nine months had been. Touché, Mom, you’re absolutely right. That’s true for all of us.

But the weather WAS gorgeous

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Friday’s Frugal Five

1. We’re into the month of December now, so I’m now less than three months away from four years of this clothes buying ban experiment. I suppose I *should* right a post about it once I hit that mark, and I probably will, but it’s become less interesting for me to talk about and more just life. Which perhaps may exactly be the post.

COVID and working from home and rarely seeing anyone definitely helps with not needing new clothing, and I’m hoping we hold on some of these more “comfort” trends when it comes to clothes. We shall see, but I won’t be buying new clothes regardless. Plus, the more Zero Waste Cutie shares about the fast fashion industry on Instagram, the less I want to buy new clothes ever, at least from the cheap, big name brands.

The parts of us most people see these days anyway

2. We made tacos (again) during the week, and I made cilantro lime rice to go with the meal. The kiddo and I headed out to the front yard after I started cooking the rice to pick the cilantro that went in the rice.

There’s something extra special about harvesting food in December. While the quantity might not be the same as late summer, the appreciation of the fresh leafy greens are particularly poignant.

3. The weather has been pretty good this week; cold, but good and dry, so we’ve been taking evening walks to look at the holiday lights up in our neighborhood. Even before Thanksgiving, there were a lot of decorations up, and now there are even more. I would guess there are more lights up in our greater neighborhood than I’ve seen in the ten winters we’ve lived in our home.

When we visited Iceland in January, many of their Christmas lights were still up. The days are even shorter there than here, though not by so much when you consider their long dusk hours, but they do the light up the night right. Hopefully this year isn’t the only one that has outside lights on early and in a big way. With these dark, heavy months, we all need a little more light in our lives.

And our tree is up now!

4. I ordered our Christmas cards from Minted this week, and they should arrive any day now. I like using Minted because they pay individual artists to design the cards, and this year one of the first example cards I saw featured a lesbian couple. My loyalty is now set with that company, and I will happily order from them in future years.

I was able to order on the tail end of Cyber Monday, so I was able to input the code for 20% off my total order. On top of that, I clicked the link through Rakuten initially, which had an additional 10% cash back. While the order wasn’t particularly cheap because I ordered 100 cards, it was definitely a lot cheaper thanks to the discount and the cash back.

*Apparently Minted also has a referral program, so if you’re interested in ordering cards or other items through them, here’s a link for $25 off your first order of $100 or more.

5. Jessica from The Fioneers and I had our first ever SlowFI Coffee Date yesterday afternoon via Zoom, and it was so much fun. Instead of a more formal podcast set up, we decided to chat life and the slow route to financial independence via a “coffee shop date.” While we couldn’t actually meet up in person, this was absolutely the next best thing, down to a fake coffee shop Zoom background.

We had a great time catching up with each other and answer questions from the people who watched the live event. If you missed it, here’s a link to watch as well as a transcript of the audio. If you listened – or are interested in listening – let me know! We really enjoyed ourselves and think we want to do more of these.

Exercise Update

I may have overdid the running a little bit on Thanksgiving and babied my hamstrings a little bit this week. Note to self: I am now at the age I need to do a better job warming up before going for a run. I took a break after Thursday and didn’t run again until Sunday, and I kept it easy then. I ran then on Monday, but my hamstrings were still feeling it, so I decided to take a short break to make sure I didn’t actually hurt myself and set back from my new running gains.

The rest of the week was filled with long runs, so I still got my steps in, but otherwise I kept it lower key and did some stretching. As of writing this (Thursday night), my hamstrings feel almost 100% again, so I’d say it was the right decision. I’ll go for a run again this weekend, but with some warming up first, especially in the cold weather.

How was your Thanksgiving break? Did you get some time to relax? Yes, I know, with the background doom music while the pandemic treks on.

6 thoughts on “Friday’s Frugal Five (COVID-19 Week 40)

  1. i have to take more of an interest in our herbs and up our cilantro game. it has to be indoors in winter around here but i love the stuff. i’ll finish up the t’giving stuffing tonight as mrs. me can’t take any more of that. we got a tree this year for the 1st time in awhile.

    1. Yeah, I want to get more indoor herbs going, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised how well the cilantro and parsley continue to do.

      1. I used to sell on Amazon, and my mother took an interest in a returned Aerogarden (the buyer/returner swiped the 6 pods, grr). She bought an herb pack and it very quickly became a forest of awesome smells! Now we’re trying cherry tomatoes 🤞

  2. That is a great looking tree–not an inch to spare! The one nice thing about the pandemic is they’ve introduced an extra warm weather accessory in the face mask, but I’m going to go out on a limb and still say that this time period has been, on the whole, very much a negative! Welcome to the age of warming up before a workout–not that I do a very good job of it myself!

    1. Yeah – we nailed it on tree size this year for sure haha. And yes – masks on extra cold days at least mean my nose is now warm.

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