So...after church on Sunday, Trent really, really, really wanted fried chicken. He didn't care where, but the fried chicken part was non-negotiable. After getting ourselves said chicken...this happened....
No, not the fancy truck with the flat tire and AAA service dude. Scooch over to the little red car in the middle of the truck sandwich. I got in, turned the key and...nothing. No sign of life in my car whatsoever. Apparently Raising Cane's was the place to have car trouble on Sunday!
My battery was a goner. Trent looked at the date on it and discovered it was five years old, which I then learned was a life well lived for a car battery. Two rescue friends, two and a half hours and $180 later, I had myself a new 7 year life battery and a running car.
And I was juuuust fiiiine about all of it.
You see folks, there was a time not that long ago when having to suddenly drop $180 on anything would have ruined my weekend. It would have stressed me out, freaked me out and bummed me out. But now, we have this thing called a healthy savings account balance.
Oh, we need four new tires all at the same time? Happy trails.
Car battery totally dies and have to get a new one? Start your engines.
Husband gets really sick with sinus junk and has to pay three digits for doctor and lots of medicine? Get well soon babe.
No sweat. No biggee. We've got the money stashed away for these very purposes and it's readily available when we need it. I cannot tell you what a relief this is. And I cannot stress enough the importance of keeping a savings account. When things are tight, this is hard. But here is what I recommend: try. Even if it is $10 per paycheck that can go to a savings account, do it. Even if in a few months you have to buy a new tire or a bunch of medicine, that's at least $40 or so less than you would have had to spend.
Which brings me to an important point: If you work hard to put money into savings and then end up having to actually use it for a legitimate purpose, don't let it bother you that you had to take some out. That is what it is for! I struggled with this for a while. We worked hard to gradually build up a nice balance in the account and then the four new tires at once scenario happened. $400 of our hard earned and diligently saved money, gone. I kept telling myself "This is what this money is for Anna. No reason to stress about it because it was there when we needed it and this expense did not throw off our regular cash flow, end up on a credit card or make us eat beans for two weeks. It's oookaaaay." And now? Yeah it stinks to have to deplete savings, but life costs money and since we've got some money stashed away, I don't sweat it when we have to use it.
So, do you have a savings account? Do you pout when you have to actually use money from it, like I used to? Have you ever gone to eat fried chicken and ended up spending almost $200?