Dec 19, 2012

Our no-spend tryout

This past month has brought some changes in our financial habits, some of necessity and some circumstantial.

Over the summer and fall we put quite a lot of money into renovations on our home (a much needed new roof and windows) and then last month we had several unexpected expenses (car repairs being one) that ate up most of our savings. 

And added to that was the realization that my husband's work might be laying people off quite soon, so we can't count on the income we thought would be a permanent thing.

So we decided - for a time - to just stop spending other than the essentials - mortgage, utilities, gas, groceries, etc. 

One thing that has helped me is staying at home with our newborn - it's easier to resist temptation when I'm not in the stores eying things I don't need but want once I see them!

It's been interesting to cut out extra expenses this time of year in particular - advertising for holiday sales and shopping is everywhere, even finding its way to my largely housebound self through flyers and emails. I've been noticing my craving to spend, to shop, to buy things I honestly don't need. 

There really is no better way to evaluate your spending habits then to just stop spending for a time. I'm realizing how all the little purchases really add up over the course of a month - a coffee or drive through run here and there, a few little things for the home, new makeup or books or a shirt I saw and just wanted. 

I'm not against buying things or treating yourself once in a while, but I'm definitely seeing the value in being aware and in control of our purchases and expenses.

4 comments:

  1. Oh my goodness, I was JUST about to do a blog post on this. LOL. We have two children's birthday's too!I realllllly want to start building my house plus we need a roof or our FL house that's 4k more than expected!

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  2. Oh I hear you! I have learned so many finacial lessons the hard way! :P Let me tell you! ;) I too was thinking of posting on this subject - hmmm great minds think alike?!? But with everything make sure your motive is a Godly one - directed by Him - obviously being a 'good stewart' with money is biblical but our motives are not always His. I hope to do better in the new year - so I'd be happy to get together to talk about good ideas, smart choices and to be accountable! Will you help me and in turn I help you?! :D (See already your little one is training you! ;) I told you God would use Him to do that! lol!! Can't go anywhere - and don't want to stay long when you do! ;) hahah!)

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  3. PS> I think I may give this idea a try too - I'll run it by Dave...somehow though I think this would be MUCH harder for us! :( I hate learning lessons, over, and over, and over and over! :P ;) lol!!

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  4. I've been thinking about this TOO. :) When we realized how much we (AKA my husband) were going to be earning this year, we thought...uh oh, time to get frugal. Staying home definitely takes away the temptation for me to spend money. We can't really escape spending money on transportation (for my husband), utilities, etc. But the groceries really break the bank. My in-laws bring us food a lot but sometimes we need to supplement, and just a few things really add up. If food is on "sale" here it tends to be close to expiring, so it's pretty hard to reduce the grocery bills and still eat well.

    We are in a new home as well and I often drool over the IKEA catalog or long for a sewing machine to make some decorations. But it is also fun to make do with what we have.

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