This weekend I took a picture of my kids in the snow holding their brand new swimsuits that we just bought at Target. I thought that it would be a funny picture showing the juxtaposition of the weather and what we were shopping for. The more I thought about it, it was actually a snapshot of how you deal with a lack of planning and what the costs might be.
We’re heading to Florida for part of winter break. In Indiana, it’s REALLY cold right now and actually snowing more than usual. My tween/teen daughters all of a sudden told me that their bathing suits from last summer do not fit anymore. But we leave in less than a week!! Where were we going to find swim suits in the middle of the winter in Indiana?
I tried shopping online but that was a bust. The girls are at ages where their sizes are in limbo between kids and adults. Anywhere that shopped online that could get it to me quickly might not even have the right size when it arrived and then we would be stuck.
We tried local places we thought might have them. The lady at JCPenney looked at us like we were crazy. Dick’s Sporting Goods had a selection of about 4 different “Sporty” suits that my girls refused to wear and I refused to pay a fortune for.
I ended up going back online and searching for places that might have local pickup. I got lucky that it looked like Target had a good selection. I was able to narrow down the selection online to try on in-store plus use my new Target REDCard to save a little on the purchase. The kids didn’t LOVE them and I didn’t get a huge deal, but they like them enough to wear them and my husband didn’t choke when we bought them.
Because I didn’t plan ahead at the end of the summer season (knowing that we were going to need summer clothes in December this year), I ended up spending a lot of time and extra money on something in a week where both time and money are precious commodities.
It’s a good lesson about running a business as well. When you plan ahead for what you know is coming down the road, you will save yourself both time and money. Whether that is pre-writing blog posts and emails, paying annually for services rather than monthly, or not letting little tasks pile up, one of the best things that we can do for our future business is to plan better today.
And what about those times that you do not plan ahead? You do the best that you can to work smart. You do a little research but might have to cut your losses when you come to the understanding that you just have to get it done. You pick an option that may not be the best you could have come up with if you had started earlier, but still one that you can live with. Then, you don’t look back! You are okay with the fact that not everything in life can be planned perfectly.
As for us, fortunately all the shorts still fit and there is plenty of sunscreen in the closet. All I need to find are some sunglasses and flip flops and we will be on our way!