By Diane Ako
Claus took Olivia skiing in December. I chose to stay home.
The night they were leaving, he put her booster cat seat in the middle of the stairs. I almost tripped on it. "What's this for?" I asked.
"I want to remember to take it," he said. "The rental company wants $40 a day to rent this!"
I knew this. He should know this; we've traveled with her before. If memory serves, he didn't care last time, and said we should just pay the $40 a day rather than struggle with a huge, bulky toddler car seat (as opposed to a small, lightweight booster.) It was ever-practical I who insisted we bring it with us.
I'd learned from my cousin Val - thank you, Val - some of the tricks of traveling with kids, and I knew the airlines did not charge for this item. He just thought it was extra hassle to carry all that luggage, a two year old, and child equipment.
On this trip, Olivia is five and much easier to handle, but he is a single parent for the week, so I figured the level of hassle would be just as unappealing.
"You? Care about saving $40 a day? Who are you? Do I even know you?" I joked.
I should insert here that while Claus is more free with his spending than I am, he's fiscally responsible. I totally trust him with our money and his management skills. He just values convenience and comfort and is willing to pay for it much quicker than I am, a topic which we've always teased each other about. He's too spendy, and I'm too practical.
I shared this story with my parents at lunch the next day. My dad laughed, "He's been married to you too long. You're rubbing off on him."
It probably resonated with my dad since that is exactly the dynamic of their marriage, except their fiscal habits are severely opposite, and I think Claus and my habits are just slightly different.
To which my mother added in empathy, "Your father can't save a penny."
What are you and your spouse's spending habits?