Now that I work from home, I have a little more time to prepare healthy meals.  I’ve even been known to bust out a new recipe on Pinterest on occasion, or try a new creation of my own.  On days like those, I feel particularly accomplished- like I’m Wonder Woman- and like I can do it all.

But it isn’t always that way, especially when I’m really busy.  There are days that I literally work online from 7:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. without realizing how late it is.  And on those days, I panic.  Sometimes I even make Worst Mom Ever meals like packets of oatmeal with a banana on top (last week), boxed mac-n-cheese (the week before), and Red Baron pizza (I can’t believe my kids will eat that).  Other days, I get super stressed when I realize that we are running low on groceries and have to fight off the temptation to take everyone out to eat.  And it works…most the time.tofu


Fighting the Urge to Splurge

I have to be honest.  We’re having a much more difficult time eating at home since we moved to a new area at the beginning of the year.  Why?  Because there are much better food options here.  For example, we live near one of the main retail drags where you can find all the basic stuff like Qdoba, Chick-Fil-A, O’Charley’s, Chilli’s, Wendy’s, Subway, and more.  In addition, just five minutes down the road is my favorite restaurant of all time- Asian Grill– where they let you substitute tofu in any entrée.  Hell, I even had a fancy Ethiopian dinner with my brother the other night.  It was absolutely yummy and they have all sorts of vegetarian options, but it wasn’t cheap!

Look at me, going on and on about food when this post is supposed to be about fighting the urge to splurge I can’t help it!  There’s just something so luxurious about letting someone else cook your family’s meal and do the dishes, am I right?  On the other hand, we are doing pretty good about staying on track with our food spending goals, despite the fact that there are now so many delicious options in our area.  Here’s how we’ve been silencing our inner-fatties:

We are sticking to our budget

We still have the same food budget as we always have, and that means that there isn’t much room for dining out.  Fortunately, we’ve made our budget stretch by having cheaper meals several days a week.  That way, we can afford to go out for a nice meal a couple of times a month.

We are watching our waistlines

It’s getting nice out, folks.  Know what that means?  It’s almost bathing suit season and I would prefer not to look awful.  I started watching my waistline about a month ago (about the time that I quit drinking diet coke) and I’ve already lost 3 or 4 pounds.  The fact that we’re trying not to overeat makes it easier to resist the temptation to go out.

We are prioritizing

If I were creating my dream world, I would never cook.  I would go out to breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day, and eat delicious delicacies from all over the world.

I would also be 500 pounds and broke. 

It’s all about priorities, folks, and unfortunately dining out just isn’t that much of a priority.  Whenever I spend $50 on a dinner out, I can’t help but think that that same $50 could have paid for several days of groceries!

Maybe one day I’ll learn to cook all of my favorite meals.  In the meantime, we’ll just keep focusing on staying within our food budget and only dining out a couple of times a month.  I know, I know.  I’ve got first world problems.  On the other hand, overindulgence is rarely a good thing, do you agree?

Do you have problems fighting the urge to splurge on dinners out?  How do you talk yourself off of the ledge?