Thursday, June 4, 2009

A list of 10 for Young Marrieds (without Children)

  1. Travel. It doesn’t matter if you like day trips, long weekends away, or months abroad. If you have the travel bug, indulge in it now when you can pack light and get a running start. Yes, Europe/ South America/ Alaska will still be there after you have kids and they are old enough to travel far. But it’s not going to be any cheaper or easier than right now. And PS - Disney World/ Disneyland DOES NOT count as “travel” when you are a young married. You are not 12 anymore.

  2. Get Cable. I know, there’s 600 channels and nothing on, but the channel surfing is so much more fun when you have more than six choices. Your budget may be tight, but it’s cheaper than going to the movies every weekend.

  3. Expand your Horizons. Take a class, join a book club, begin a hobby. Your SO may be your “whole world” but the world - and you - become a lot more interesting when you open your eyes a bit and take a look around.

  4. Get to Know Where You Live. You may be homesick, lonely, or shy, but getting to know your (new) hometown can be fun! Explore the parks, check out the Farmer’s Market, drive the freeways and travel down the back roads, and see what you find. Grab a travel book or do an online search – you might be surprised by the cool stuff that surrounds you.

  5. Be Impulsive. Book a weekend in a hotel and order every dessert on the menu from room service. Go out for a midnight supper. Buy that amazing dress you saw in the window. Skinny dip. Watch the sun rise from the top of Mt. Haleakala. Take the left fork instead of the right.

  6. Learn to Cook. No, you don’t need to attend Le Cordon Bleu, but you DO need to be able to whip together a decent meal once in a while. Ramen noodles do not count. One easy menu: Roasted chicken, creamy mashed potatoes, and steamed broccoli. For dessert, make some brownies (from a box) & top them with vanilla ice cream. So easy – and good - even your mother-in-law might be impressed.

  7. Find Your Style. Personal style doesn’t have to be expensive or time consuming. Whether you like to decorate your house, paint, or adorn yourself in denim and diamonds, style is personal and speaks volumes about you. Take the time to be introspective and be brutally honest about what does and doesn’t work for you. Magazines and the internet are two quick and easy ways to start getting a sense of your likes & dislikes. Once you get a feeling for your style, look around at how to make it work for you. IKEA, Target, Old Navy, H & M, TJ Maxx, Marshall’s and the sale rack at your favorite store are all great places to find style and value. One caveat: Just because it is a “good deal” doesn’t make it right for you.

  8. Invest in your 401K. Retirement seems like a million years away, but putting your money to work now is the smartest thing you can do for yourself. You may think that you have no room in your budget, but start with just $5 a check. You – and your retirement villa in Italy - will appreciate it later.

  9. Take Care of Yourself. Floss. Take a walk once in a while. And wear sunscreen! You will thank me in about 15 years.

  10. Be Happy Right Where You Are. “Happiness is a journey, not a destination. For a long time it seemed to me that life was about to begin – real life. But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life. This perspective has helped me to see there is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way. So treasure every moment you have and remember that time waits for no one.” ~Souza


Matt and Erin Pitcher said...

I love that quote by Souza! It's one of my favorite. Great suggestions! There's one thing I'd add (not that I'm an expert or anything. Four years isn't much.) Don't sacrifice your happiness or you free time together just for a little money/don't obsess about money or the lack thereof.

The first summer we were married Matt and I worked several evenings a week cleaning office buildings--it totally cut into our social lives and made it so we couldn't do a lot of the things we wanted to. At the end of summer we'd made a pidily $1000. As poor students that seemed okay, but now that's what I make in a week! LAME-O!

Kelly said...

I love your list and agree with so many of them. Of course I think some of them are still great to do even if you have some kids. I agree, travel, travel, travel. We had kids pretty fast, not that I regret having them, but there is so much I wanted to do before that just aren't possible now. I have to admit I wish I would have found my style. I'm still trying to figure that one out.