So this is the post my mom has been waiting for. Growing up, we had a lot of standing jokes about my mom’s frugality. If there was a name brand food in the house, we knew there had been a coupon. If there was a garage sale nearby, she could certainly sniff it out. But Mom probably heard the most jokes about her attempt at family togetherness that we called Quality Time.
My mom thought that it would be nice to spend a Sunday evening every once in a while doing something together as a family. But to make that happen, something was required: a coupon or a sale. Of course, my brother and I knew that my parents did not have a large income. Believe it or not, lumberjacks and Avon ladies don’t typically bring in six-figure incomes. My mom became the queen of bargain shopping, doing her best to live within a budget, while still finding ways to work in special treats. Of course we didn’t see it that way at the time. To us, Quality Time was a forced exercise in coupon clipping. But now I get it.
On Sunday, we told the kids that if they helped us clean the house, we would do something special that evening. They rolled up their sleeves, grabbed some sponges and wiped down walls, put away toys and helped with laundry. So that evening we went out to eat and then took them miniature golfing for the first time. As we were getting ready to leave, I recalled that I had a voucher for a few rounds of golf. I dug around and lo-and-behold, I found it. And so with a coupon in my hand, my family and I headed out the door for some Quality Time.
I realize that a much younger version of myself is probably rolling her eyes right about now, but if she’ll stop for a moment she may learn a lesson on frugality, living within her means and the importance of family togetherness. Thanks for the lesson, Mom. And sorry for the eye rolling.