It’s been another week since I wrote about my thoughts after the events of January 6th when a deadly breach of the US Capitol building occurred, and days since President Trump was impeached for the second time – a first for a United States President.
The Senate is currently not planning to reconvene until after the presidential term concludes, so it is yet to be seen whether Congress will convict. All in all, it’s been one heck of a week and a half.
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Friday’s Frugal Five
1. We set up a dinner and drive in movie night on Saturday evening as a pilot to test out the event in hopes to have more of them in the future. Especially during the winter, it’s difficult to find fun, COVID safe events, but drive in movies are definitely that. We worked with two local restaurants to create dinner boxes to be purchased along with the movie, and we sold out of the twenty five vehicle spots for the event and sold more than double that of restaurant meals.
Since this was a test event, we made it happen very frugally. It costs $400+ to screen a big name movie, so my sister, who is a movie director and producer down in Los Angeles, graciously allowed us to screen her film Painting Anna for no charge. I then borrowed a projector and screen from a friend, as rentals start at $1,200, though they are much larger.
The event itself was allowed to happen in a local church parking lot, and we are so appreciative of their support. Thanks to those savings, we were able to test out the concept and have the only costs be meals paid to the restaurants (and the small fees to Eventbrite).
It was a great night, and it felt so good to have “a thing” to do on a Saturday night, as we heard from attendees. We had a few bumps (mostly parking that many cars), but overall we all had a good time and we will be doing more in the future.
2. I ran a doughnut challenge in my restaurant support group at the end of December and held voting soon after. Multiple doughnut shops shared with me – and other members of the group – that they had seen a real uptick in business through the challenge. One shop even sold out multiple days unexpectedly – talk about best case scenario during this pandemic.
Part of the challenge included prizes for the shops that won each of the categories (Best of, Best Variety, Most Creative, and Best Coffee to drink with doughnuts). Monday night, I picked up 4 dozen doughnuts from Legendary Doughnuts, the winner of the Most Creative category, and delivered to Swedish Hospital in Issaquah.
It was an odd experience dropping food off very quickly to limit inside time at the hospital, but it felt really good to purchase food from a local business and deliver to one of our local hospitals that are working so hard for us all right now.
3. My mother in law dropped off three pairs of colorful leggings that she had but didn’t fit her well. They are so soft and comfy, and considering I mostly wear leggings these days, very welcome. I wouldn’t normally pick out such brightly colored (okay, soft muted pastels) for leggings, but I’m enjoying wearing them with dresses. I suppose we all need more brightness in our lives right now.
I’m a month and a half out from four years of my clothes buying ban, which feels like no time at all. One of the best parts of getting hand me down clothing from others is getting to love styles and colors that I would never have considered to pick out myself.
4. A neighbor of ours runs a food bank, so she will sometimes come home with excess food from that work that would otherwise get thrown away. This week, she offered us a couple of pre chopped stir fry bowls from Trader Joe’s that were about to expire.
It came at a perfect time as I was trying to decide what to cook for dinner along with some ribs my husband had barbequed, and it was quick and easy. Even better, we were able to help make sure that food didn’t get wasted.
5. After last Wednesday’s events, I felt the need to do something good and positive, and decided on a whim to hold a giveaway in Women’s Personal Finance and offer us $50 cash in direct giving to a woman in the group who needed it – no strings. In the day the giveaway was open, 171 women entered, and dozens of other women in the group offered to match that $50.
When I realized it was possible that we might actually have enough gifters step up to send every woman who entered $50, I took to Twitter with the ask, and my community stepped up and filled in the gap. Now that, my friends, is the good news I needed this week.
I went into the office on Friday (in a separate glassed office by myself) and decided to go for a run downtown before heading home that afternoon. Saturday was a day of more than 16,000 steps, in large part to the set up and take down of the movie night, plus a walk in the morning.
Sunday was another new to us hike – this time at the Narbeck Wetland Sanctuary in Everett (really more just a pretty walk in the woods). Before heading to deliver doughnuts on Monday evening, I stopped partway and went for a run by myself – this one an extremely soggy one, but it still happened.
Thursday was another run, this time with the kiddo. He wasn’t really feeling it until we pretended to beat a “boss” like in a video game, and then he enjoyed himself. When you’re running with a five year old, you do what works.
I wanted a bigger workout than the run though, so I went to the 240 step staircase at a park nearby and spent a half an hour walking stairs until my legs got shaky. I would have stopped sooner, but I refused to stop until a couple other folks finished, thanks to my competitive streak.
How are you holding up right now? What’s the good you’ve held onto these past days?