Enjoying The Summer While Spending Less Money!

I will be real and wholeheartedly admit there was a time in my life that I worked WAY too much. I was unsatisfied with my current job as a Director in Fitness. My first born was 18 months and I wanted to spend more day time hours with her and I just knew I needed an out.  Not just for myself as a mom, but professionally. I love my family to the end of this earth but I can also admit that having a career is fulfilling to me. I also recognized what made me happy was working more one-on-one with people. I knew I had the knowledge and skills to help people work towards their goals and I LOVE working with others to educate them and help them get to a place that would make them comfortable in their bodies. I knew I wanted to start working for myself and have more flexibility especially during the day.

It was time to do something different so I started working my full time job as well as part-time teaching my own classes and personal training. It was amazing how one opportunity led to the next. I was thankful and honored, to say the least, at how much support I was given. However, when opportunity knocked on the door it also required more time.

It’s almost embarrassing to admit that it wasn’t uncommon for me to leave my house at 4:30 or 5am and not return home until after 8pm or even 9pm on some evenings. I was on a mission and motivated to get to a place where I could leave my full time job to work for myself. I got there! But it did come with a price. The habit of working so much stuck for a little too long and my family life was becoming less happy

Once I stopped trying to make money my family and I became happier. I wanted to become rich in time and not in money. 

When did it become “cool” and popular to get as little sleep possible and work as much many hours as we can? When did we start accepting that we couldn’t make time to take days off and not have time to take vacations? And when we do take time for vacations why did we start taking such elaborate and expensive ones?

We do everything FAST and try to CRAM as much as we can into our days. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes fast is good and efficient.  Medium speed can be fitting, but for me and my family I needed to balance that with more slow moments that mater the most.

I promised myself that I would slow down in moments and experience things for a awhile before I snapped a picture. I don’t want to miss out while I am behind the camera.

Here is my list I am lovingly calling “SLOW DOWN AND SMELL THE ROSES”. Low key and inexpensive things to do with my children and husband this summer.

  1. Walking to a new park with a blanket in hand, find a cozy place to lie to look for shapes, animals, and people in clouds.
  2. Make a trip to a local pet store. – Now this can get dangerous for some as I know some kids may sweet talk you into walking out with a pet. With a conversation beforehand this can typically be avoided and most pet stores are great at letting your kids pet the animals.
  3. Take a trip to the library. I tend to forget about this hidden gem. We could spend hours there between playing on the computer, playing with educational toys, reading books while there, finding books to check out, or joining a story time group.
  4. Local Events! My memory is not the greatest so I made it a point the first time I saw a flier with local events during the summer to put these in my calendar asap.
  5. Swimming at a local pool. Up until a certain age young kids don’t realize if they are swimming at a local pool or an expensive water park thousands of miles away. They just want to swim!
  6. Yoga at a park . When my daughter was around three years old I took her to a park and brought yoga mats so we could do some yoga poses together. Nothing fancy and it was followed by some doll playing but she LOVED it and still mentions it to this day.i and b yoga use
  7. Neighborhood Water Fight and Movie. We did this last summer and it’s on this list to do again this summer.
    We had the neighbor kids bring their own water guns over, filled up a few buckets of water and let them go crazy. After awhile they went home to change and came back to watch a movie together.
  8. Plant Flowers and Vegetables. It sounds so simple but its the little things that kids love. Getting their hands dirty and using a shovel to plant is a huge hit. We don’t have a garden so we plant a few plants in planters and watch them grow!
  9. Look at the stars. My husband is much better at this than I am. We will be sitting on our porch at night around the fire pit and my husband will point out stars and constellations. Our daughter is instantly intrigued.
  10. Dancing in the rain! How many times do we as adults complain about the weather and rain? Let kids appreciate it and suggest they go out and run around and play in the puddles. Our daughter was shocked the first time my husband told her to go outside and run around during a warm day with a light rain fall. We all shared some laughs as she giggled and hopped through the yard.


  • Keep it simple, your undivided attention is one of the greatest gifts you can give.