How I’m Using My Stimulus Check + Ideas For Yours.

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     I had to wait a couple weeks longer then some of my friends did for theirs, but my stimulus check finally arrived last Thursday. In today's blog post, I thought I'd share what I'm using my check for, and a few extra ideas for other things you can do with them. And I'm also sharing a fun and preppy spring outfit! 

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Top // Skirt // Shoes // Necklace // Purse (old, very similar from same retailer here} // Watch c/o // 

      To be honest, when I first heard about the fact that most Americans would be receiving these checks I wasn't on board with it. Should people who are unexpectedly laid off or furloughed due to COVID-19 be receiving some sort of assistance? ABSOLUTELY! These are such unprecedented times, and a lot of people are dealing with unexpected financial hardship. So many industries are deemed non-essential by the government right now... and if the government is legally preventing you from going to work and getting a paycheck, the least they could do is send checks to those who can't work. The part of the stimulus checks I initially disagreed with was that they were being sent to most American adults, including those of us still employed. All I kept thinking was that I'm blessed enough to still be working during this time, what right do I have to receive this money that should only be going to people who can't currently work at their jobs?!

     Anyways, over the past few weeks my thoughts have shifted a bit. Bottom line was that I was going to be getting a check (even though I didn't think I deserved one initially), and I wanted to view it as an unexpected blessing, and something to treat with care and thoughtfulness. This might be the only time in our lifetimes that the government just sends us money... for free, no strings attached! So I didn't want to be frivolous and irresponsible with it. As a Christian, I believe that God calls us to be good stewards of their financial resources, and this circumstance is especially unique. My check ending up arriving a bit later then the first round, but it gave me extra time to think and pray on how I wanted to use it. Here's what it'll be used for:

     First and foremost, I knew I wanted to tithe a portion of it! I wanted it to be a special gift (different from the organizations that I normally support), and I prayed and thought about where I should gift part of it. God made the answer apparently clear to me... I ended up tithing a portion to the church I attended when I lived in Vermont. 😊The church community I found during my time there was one of the biggest bright spots in a really difficult year of my life, and I was never able to tithe very much to the church at the time I was attending. That church still means a lot to me and always will, so that was where I tithed part of my check!

    The rest of the check will be going into my savings account until further notice. Even though I have been lucky enough to still have my job throughout all of this so far, a lot is still changing and shifting economically. Things could still get worse before they get better. While I'm hoping to still stay employed during all of this, if the pandemic has taught us anything it's that we can't predict what's to come. I keep hearing more and more stories of people in industries that they didn't think would be super affected, and now they're dealing with furloughs or layoffs. I want to save the majority of this check until I feel that it's safe enough not to (which I'm thinking will be a few months out?).

     If things have improved greatly both health-wise and economically in the country by my birthday (first week of September), I'm hoping to withdraw a portion of the check and spend it on a big splurge purchase. I've had my eye on this bracelet for years now. I have two different dupe versions of it that I wear all the time, so I know that I would definitely use and get my money's worth out of the real deal. It's an investment jewelry piece and something I would probably have for the rest of my life! If I do end up spending any of my check, I want it to be on a thoughtful and meaningful purchase, not just something random like clothing or makeup. They also sell this jewelry designer at a local jewelry store right here in Charlottesville, so I love knowing that I'll be supporting a local business! My hope is to be buying the bracelet around my birthday! But obviously if things aren't great yet pandemic-wise, I'll probably keep all the money in savings a bit longer (aside from what I already tithed). If I do make the purchase, the remainder of the check will just continue to stay in savings!

     So that's what I'll plan to be using mine for! If you're unsure of what to use your check for (and if you're in a healthy place with your savings accounts and still fully employed during this time), here are a few additional ideas I thought of:

Put the whole check towards a debt- school or car loans, mortgage, credit card debt, etc. 
Plan to spend $120 of it per month (so it'll last a year!) at local businesses in your community.
Challenge yourself to plan a trip for the future that costs right around $1200 with travel, lodging, food and excursions all factored in! (Just make sure if you book it now that it is 100% refundable if you will have to cancel.)
Or try to plan a few different weekend trips for the rest of the year or 2021 using it- put a few hundred towards each! 
Pamper yourself by trying some new beauty or wellness treatments - great way to support local salons once they re-open.
Invest it- add it to investments that you already have or start new ones.
Save it to get the latest phone, computer, or other cool tech gadget. 
If you're engaged, put it towards your wedding dress or another fun wedding expense that you might've cut the budget on. 

     If you feel comfortable sharing, I'd love to hear how you're using your stimulus check! And if yours hasn't arrived yet and you are expecting one, remember you can check the status of it on the IRS website. 

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     God Bless,

     xoxo Annaliese 
#SpringFashion #Skirts #Tops #Fashion #MyStyle
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