Friday, April 22, 2011

No Spending Progress, Week 3!

Day 16: Saturday!  It was cold & rainy again, so we had a slow morning & then went to the Y to swim for a bit.  We didn’t know they were also having an Open House, but it was a bonus for us, because we left with balloon animals & mini smoothies!  After we cleaned up, I made a Target run to buy Easter Goodies.  I know – this was a test of want vs. need, but I think I did OK.  I bought easter grass & eggs, plus sidewalk chalk and bubble gum at the Dollar Tree, then walked to Target and bought jelly beans & chocolate eggs, a $3 movie, and a few other surprises.  Our Easter baskets are never huge, but it was really hard to search out inexpensive items that I knew they would be excited about vs. buying a bunch of ‘stuff” to just fill up the baskets. Easter was part of our plan, so I don’t consider this Unplanned Spending.  I also used a gift card, so it didn’t even come out of our regular budget.  Total spent: $0

Day 17: Great day.  After church Big Sis had to clean her room.  It took her 2 hours, but she did a decent job.  Then we made her watch an episode of Hoarders to help her understand why it wasn’t critical to keep every scrap of paper or bit of ribbon that comes her way.  Total spent: $0

Day 18: MONDAY! Grocery shopping again.  No spending means our grocery bill has gotten far steeper.  Big Daddy is also on a new rotation where he is able to eat breakfast at home, and I pack a lunch for him each day.  I’m buying twice as much milk each week & am making twice as much bread.  Still, FAR less expensive than eating out!  Total spent: $0

Day 19:  I stopped by the thrift store to look for 2 small jars for the jellybean guess at Saturday’s Easter Activity (this was OK, as I will be reimbursed for the purchase).  And then, I caved.  I found a box of All-Clad cookware for $24.95, and it was too good to pass up.  $800+ in cookware for less than the cost of a family meal at a restaurant?  Yes, please.   After another Costco run (I forgot to buy a ham for Easter dinner), I spent the afternoon cleaning up my new pots & pans.  The day got even better when a friend stopped by with a Cherry Limeade and Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs (2 of my favorite things in the world).  It was so unexpected and so thoughtful!  I think I teared up a little bit because I was so tickled.  Total spent: $26.45 (includes tax)

Day 20: One of the unexpected benefits of this experiment has been a huge reduction in the “I Wants” coupled with an increased satisfaction with what I have.   I never reflected on how much ‘window shopping’ contributes to the “Keeping Up with the Jones’” syndrome.  I know I can’t spend, so I don’t even bother killing time by browsing in TJ Maxx/ Target/ the mall/ online.  Not having all that ‘Stuff’ dangling in front of me is making me appreciate how blessed I am and refocus on incomplete projects and prepping for our move.  Total spent: $0

Day 21: I was a slow starter this morning, so I used a coupon for a free hot chocolate to kick start my morning.  Spent lots of time on etsy bookmarking items to decorate a home we don’t have yet.  Not terribly constructive, but highly entertaining.  Total spent: $0

Day 22: Earth Day brought me another free hot chocolate this morning.  Thank goodness because the cold, grey morning brought a big frown to my day.  So ready for windows open weather.  Both kids were off school, so we hit the library for Playgroup.  I really enjoyed talking with the other Moms - it is like free therapy!  Not spending is starting to feel normal.  I still 'want', but it's more like wishful thinking than anything else.  Total spent: $0

Week 1: $0
Week 2: $8.09
Week 3: $26.45


Matt and Erin Pitcher said...

you are an inspiration, amy!

Ashley said...

Your little journal comments daily on TOP of the spending tracking makes this idea THAT much more fabulous!!! I love free coupons and things. I just wish i felt more okay with our income level- but that's why I'm going to reread the part of this post that mentioned being happy with what you have- because I am/need to be/should be!!! :) (though wouldn't our range rover dream car be nice SOME day??? :) I swear you love that car too... And sooo nice of your thoughtful friend!!!! Keep her around!! :)