It’s Black Friday, Thanksgving is over, and I’m trying to resist going shopping today. I’m not going to get all judge-y on anyone with a plan to go out and shop today. I have been there before, and I’m not ruling out buying a few items online for my Zumba instructor wardrobe at deep discount. (Some of my workout clothes are getting super threadbare.) But overall I’m trying to avoid shopping temptation, because aside from the aforementioned fitness clothes, I don’t need anything. So, what are some good strategies for how to resist Black Friday?
- Celebrate leftovers and the idea that you don’t have to cook today. If you cooked, you’ve got a whole fridge full of food, so why not take it easy and celebrate the fact that you pulled off a major feast? We can sit around the table and force everyone to say what they’re thankful for, for a second day in a row, even if the kids scowl and can only think of their toys. If you didn’t cook, then practice gratitude for the fact that you didn’t have to deal with eviscerating a ginormous turkey carcass like I did. Eew.
- Relive past Black Fridays by remembering past deals or appreciating things you bought that you really love. Although I’m mostly trying to opt out, I can think of some amazing Black Friday deals we’ve picked up in the past. Once we found an entire set of six really nice dining chairs for less than $200, for example, and another time we got a great TV when ours was broken. Guess what? We still have them all and they still work. I think I’ll go sit in one of those chairs now.
- Get off the Internet and do something for your body. Go outside and take a walk, or go to the gym. I subbed a Zumba class this morning and although the gym wasn’t packed, there were about ten people who showed up for the class. It felt great to move. Yesterday after Thanksgiving dinner in the late afternoon, the kids played in the park nearby and we took a long walk around the lake near our house. The eleven-year-old didn’t complain, which was a first, and my three-year-old rode her Dora hot wheels bike almost the entire way, which is over two miles. This was definitely something to be thankful for. (Even if the eleven-year-old talks incessantly about the iPhone she doesn’t have money for).
- Think about how bringing stuff home can make us feel stressed about adding more junk to the house. Does this happen to you? I try to Marie Kondo my life but then find more things entering my house. I don’t want any new additions until I can manage what I already have. And while you’re picturing the stress of bringing more shiny new things into your house that take up space, picture yourself spending nothing and watching the dollars pile up in the bank account, investing in your financially free future. Holler, holler.
- Do some decluttering and find things to give to charity. My big awakening on discovering the financial independence movement was working to get myself out of the “buy, get a high” culture, where purchasing things creates a rush of endorphins. It’s a high you can never achieve because it always demands more stuff in order to stay fulfilled. Instead, I am aspiring more to this (from a chart I found on Facebook, hopefully not the product of Russian Internet trolls):
So instead of researching the deals and discovering wants I didn’t know I had, I’m going to try to continue the Thanksgiving vibe of gratitude for having so much stuff already by working on gathering what I’m planning to give to a local charity that helps people get restarted after catastrophic life events.
I’m also feeling grateful for a Friday off from work. I need to decompress from a big trip to Vancouver last week with the family, and from cooking 85% of the Thanksgiving dinner yesterday. I love cooking, but moving around the kitchen for several hours trying to time everything when only a giant turkey fits in the oven is challenging. My parents came over and my mom brought a salad, pecan pie, and her delicious stuffing. I made turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce (Trader Joe’s), all the traditional stuff, but then I was super excited to try a new pie recipe from a pie cookbook I got recently.
The cookbook is Sister Pie, from a sustainable bakery in Detroit. The cookbook won a bunch of awards and judging from the first recipe, those awards are well deserved. This chocolate coconut pie was AMAZING. I blind baked the crust, and it ended up cooking a little too long, but the filling, which was like a coconut chocolate fudge-y brownie with a dark chocolate ganache topping, was out of this world. I’m determined to master pie crusts and work through a whole bunch of recipes in this book. (Ok, so I didn’t resist Black Friday when I bought this cookbook just before Thanksgiving, but it was on sale for $1.99 as a Kindle!)
It’s almost 4 pm and so far I’ve resisted Black Friday and am still feeling grateful. How are you spending this glorious post-Thanksgiving day?