Monday, August 24, 2009

Money (That's What I Want)

While I had a brief respite from school, I got a little out of hand.

Okay, a LOT out of hand.

My spending habits have been pretty under control for the last few years. Well, for most of my life, if I’m being honest. I don’t spend a lot of money on a lot of silly things. But when I have an event or a friend’s birthday coming up, I splurge. And I really get myself in trouble.

Over the last week, between a charity gala and a trip to Oklahoma City to spend time helping my best friend plan her wedding, I am in shock at how much money has disappeared from my hands. It’s overwhelmingly awful. Most of it was well-spent, mind you. I bought a new pair of boots, which I plan on getting a lot of use out of. And I bought a birthday/wedding present for my friend, which she really loved and will be using during her wedding. (When she said she wanted silver goblets for their toast, I immediately thought of these pewter flutes
and knew it would be the perfect gift.) But there was a lot of money that just…slipped away.

As a result, my bank account is looking kind of scarce, I haven’t saved any money in a while, and I’m starting to feel a little nervous about this. The biggest eye-opener, though? The $400 balance on my credit card, which had been paid off monthly for nearly two years until this very month. Appalling.

So, with today being the first day of the new school year (for me), I figure it’s high time I did something about all this. Today marks my very own spending hiatus, a la Simply Lovely
. For the next two weeks, I will be shaving my “entertainment” budget down to nil. No clothes. No crafting supplies. No dinners out “just because.” (In fact, I’ll even be bringing my lunch to work to cut out unnecessary expense there, too.) This is a relatively short amount of time, but I want to start small. If these first two weeks go well, I will plan on extending the hiatus to my one-year anniversary celebration with the Mister. It will be a perfect way to celebrate my savings.

The internet is full of fun ideas of things you can do with the supplies I already have at home. Baking is such fun for me, and I have all the supplies I need to do that, too. And, with school back in full swing, I really won’t have time to be out gallivanting at the mall or other places. Over the next couple of weeks, I’m going to hide my credit card from myself, put my check card in a hard-to-retrieve place in my wallet, and remind myself at every turn that I’m not buying things I need, but things that I want.

Wish me luck.

2 comments:

New Beginings said...

I feel you! Try Daveramsey.com he is a guru at trying to do just what you want. And it does! Honest Im not one of those people trying to sell you something. I just saw your blog and it reminded me of him. Someone turned me and my wife on to him and it has saved us tons of headaches! Good luck!

Robyn said...

Hey Jennifer! Robyn here. What I do to save money is have this conversation with myself.
Robyn sees a shirt at the Gap.
Robyn: "I like this shirt!"
Robyn thinks about how much she would pay for said shirt.
Robyn: "I'd pay $20 for this."
Robyn looks at price tag.
Robyn" "$39.99! No way! I'll wait for it to go on sale."
This method has really helped me stop spending so much money.