I love Japanese steakhouses. Like so much that I swear I would have thousands in my pocket had I not given them so much of my money between 2005 (when I discovered their existence) til 2011. My parents have always said that I have expensive taste, which I do but not to the extent they exaggerate it to. So last year when I hit a swag in life, ergo finances, we decided that we would stop eating out so much. And boy did we! Until yesterday, we hadn't been out since September 2011. But it was a special occasion. My sweetie's birthday was on Saturday and because we have been in such a financial bind, I wasn't able to get him anything significant for his birthday. So tonight I checked my email and had an abundance of birthday gifts from restaurants in the area. (My birthday is next Monday). Low and behold there was a gift from Kanki (A Japanese Steakhouse). My sweetie also had one for his birthday. They gave us 6 days to redeem our free hibachi steak, chicken, or shrimp meals and well, who are we to turn down a free meal?! So after doing some plotting, we decided to go ahead and make the trip to eat. And it was worth it! We were among many celebrating birthdays but among FEW who knew about the free birthday meal. But since we did, I got my beloved steak while he had chicken, again, for free. We paid a total of 13 dollars for our meal because we got an appetizer and drinks but for the food we got, it was well worth it!
I shared this for inspiration...for myself. For a while I was missing the lifestyle where I knew that a substantial amount of money would surface and I could just spend as I pleased because I knew I would be ok. I realized how grateful I was for that free (expensive) meal and how much of a non-essential it actually was in my life at this point. I will now continue taking advantage of coupons, discounts, and freebies as I move forward into my adulthood. I find that we are actually able to stretch money by doing that...Who would have thought? So the first lesson I've learned from this year is that I can still live my fancy little lifestyle but modestly. Saving for outings is so much better than splurging and wishing for that money back. No longer will I be dealing with that issue because I am staying in my financial lane which includes saving money, just because. It's the smart thing to do!