What Do You Do When Dreams Don’t Come True?

When is everything going to seem real? I’ve dreamt about getting married and starting a family of my own for as long as I can remember but it hasn’t happened to me yet. Everyone around me, old classmates, extended family, ect. – They are making and starting their own personal, self-contained lives. Starting futures with each other, raising babies, graduating with their masters degrees. But not me.

It’s funny because even though I “want” it so bad it seems like there’s a reason that my turn per se, hasn’t come around on the merry go round of life. It’s weird. I want to be a wife but what does a wife do that I don’t already do? I want to be a mom but I can’t picture a baby in my tummy or arms yet. I want to own a beautiful house with a giant yard and a big shaggy dog but I don’t see that dream as a reality financially. It’s like my dream life is just that; a dream. As if there’s no possibility of it being real because I can’t “feel” it happening.

When everyone else around me is planning their weddings, bachelorette parties, baby showers, and Caribbean cruises; I wonder what they are feeling. Do they feel like it isn’t real? Or was it just on their docket of life goals and they are checking them off?

In turn, I’ve also heard my whole life that..as much as you absolutely “want” something, it’ll never happen until you stop focusing on it. A woman wanting a baby, doesn’t get pregnant. It causes martial problems or divorce. She starts a new fresh life in a new city. She focuses on herself. She’s happy with the cards that she was dealt but then gets knocked up after a one night stand. And that once desired life dream is now an “oopsie.”

Obviously, that’s a drastic example but that’s how it feels to me. The people that I used to know or have many memories with lead totally different lives today. And although I have a wonderful job, loving boyfriend, and a semi-decent bank account – it still feels like I’m living the same life I was 10 years ago.

I’m nowhere near owning a house, let alone knowing which area I want to raise my future family in. The marriage wheel has been on a plateau for years and even though I want to go back to school, what the hell would I go for so that it financially pays off? That white-picket fence and children laughing while running through the sprinkler truly does feel like a dream. Just a dream.

So let me ask you, life-livers: When the big life moments do happen, does it feel real? Was your wedding the most special day of your life pre-children? Do you second guess the money it is going to cost you when you vacation out of country? Have you ever felt truly stuck or does life just magically happen to you?

Or am I the ugly duckling here? It’s as if I’m standing still, I’m the core. While the rest of the world is moving and evolving around me a million miles a minute.

$1378.

Before I begin, I’d like to address the 20-something (I’m assuming college) kids in our apartment building. I hope for your sake that you don’t die of hypothermia tonight and rather get a harsh reality check of frost bite. Running outside practically naked in near 50 below zero weather isn’t only immature but pure idiotic. Get a life.

End rant. Begin post.

We all wish that we had a fool proof way to save our precious copper pennies. Sure, we have many different means to do so but I will be the first to admit that it’s easier said than done. Savings accounts, piggy banks, hidden safes, the list goes on but it’s pretty rare when one of those are full enough to turn in for some crisp dollar bills. At least in my household it always has been, I don’t know about yours.

So even though this is a shot in the dark, my mom saw something on the internet (Pinterest, I believe) that sounded like a great and hopefully fool proof way to save money. Our initial plan replicated the photo she had seen. A glass mason jar, 52 weeks of the year, and all we do is contribute the dollar amount corresponding with that specific week. For example, on week 1 we put in $1. Week two, $2, week three, $3, and so on.

I was totally game for this. I mean, not only did it sound like a pretty slick plan but it was something fun to do. Each week, given that you contribute the required amount, you’d be able to see your total contributions. We’d cash out at the end of the year with a mean green handful of cash!

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I first made the spreadsheets noting each of the 52 weeks, the contribution amount, and the grand total. I bought a couple jars and some super glue to get started. Please note that the super glue is to prevent both ourselves and anyone around us from tampering with the goods. This all was looking promising until I was ready to assemble. Turns out my spreadsheet was too big for the jars.

IMG_4232 I fully intended on buying bigger jars but my mom and I made a pit stop at Target because they had their annual 70% clearance on Christmas going on. Something that a person JUST CANNOT pass up. Along the way we found two red and polka dot boxes. Perfect!

These were way more fun than a jar and to be honest a lot more safe. The original plan was to break open the jars at the end of the year because we had superglued them but I guess that wasn’t such a bright idea. Someone might get cut and who wants to clean up glass? No one. To sum up this unusually long story, we bought the boxes, I updated the spreadsheets to correspond with the box color, (Of course, I had to do this!) and I got started.

If you’d like to make one of your own, it’s really simple. All you’ll need are a few quick things, some of which you might have in your house:

  1. A Container. (Box or Jar)
  2. A List Of The Weeks/Contributions/Totals. (I used Microsoft Excel to create this but if you’re handier than me, you can definitely write it on paper and cut it out)
  3. Superglue. (To prevent greedy lil’ fingers from getting in)
  4. Scissors/Knife. (To cut your papers and if needed, make a slot for your money)
  5. The only other thing that I added aside from this was some ribbon but you can make it your own with puff paint, stickers, or even yarn!

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The best thing about this project was that there is no right way or wrong way to assemble it given that you know the general function of a piggy bank, homemade style! Go ahead, have some fun. I made these for my mom and I because like I said; in the beginning it’s nice to think that we can save money but it’s way harder than either of us could even imagine.

I expect that this won’t start getting difficult until we get to about the 20th week because parting with a $20 dollar bill is unthinkable! But even so, just imagine the reward we will have when we get to the end of the year. I guarantee you that we’ll have the most hard earned, thoughtful gifts under the tree in 20-14! The best part? They’ll be gifts to ourselves, the best kind.

So go ahead, try it! Join us in the 52 week money box (or jar) challenge! Lets see how many of us will be opening gifts worth $1378 come December 31st!

Peace, love, harmony, and good fortune to one, to all!