Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Weddings, Saving and all that other jazz

So I was discussing wedding costs with this guy I was dating (we'll call him the boo that got away) and he was saying how he has a maximum cost for a wedding ring no matter how much money he makes. I swear I didn't bring the subject up. He's long gone... maybe... hopefully not. I digress.

He left me with an interesting way of thinking about money though. I could subscribe to the school of thought "It's mine, I spend it." OR I could determine how much I have to spend for a particular item and do everything in my power to only spend that much.

I thought about this because for the past couple of years for Christmas I've really cut back, but no one has noticed. Because I still give thoughtful gifts and I'm still giving gifts period. Some folks have just given up on gifts all together and bring fruitcake. LOL! But I struggle to be in the mindset that even if I do have it, I shouldn't be spending it.

Between ex-boo and the thrill of watching Extreme Couponing, I feel like I should be spending less money and still getting the same stuff.

This post is random as ever, but some ways I thought about being frugal are shopping at discount grocery stores, thrifting, borrowing costly items (like ski gear), donating things instead of throwing them away for that good tax deduction, doing all the free surveys to get free gift cards, donuts, opportunities to win cash, etc.

Is frugality a habit for you or are you only frugal when you have to be?

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I don't consider myself frugal but I *do* watch my money. My biggest expenses are travel and live music, and the former hasn't been done in a year because I couldn't afford it (without massive CC debt, that is).

I was underemployed until 2009, and it has taken me until this year to get on (what *I* feel is) solid ground. When I was underemployed, I subsidized my lifestyle with credit cards. I went on trips I shouldn't have...bought things I shouldn't have and looking back I think it was because my paltry wages made me feel as though I was lacking something. I used the CC to fill that void. As soon as I got a good full-time job that excess stopped. Weird, because you'd assume more money = more spending (this has been the case with me at some point in life). It took me about a year to pay off that CC debt, and now I don't charge up anything I can't afford to pay in full (even if I choose not to pay in full). I am pretty disciplined when it comes to money but there's always room for improvement. After all, this year is the first year I've gotten an apartment by myself. I should have way more money socked away in savings than I do...but some is better than none. I didn't know how I'd fare being completely on my own for the first time but I'm doing well. Not having anyone else to depend on will do that, I suppose. One of my checks is able to cover rent & bills and the other can be used for play...so IMO that's good. At this rate, when I get another raise I will be in VERY good shape.

I don't believe in hoarding money. A little safety net and then have fun. I'm lucky in that I don't have an shopping addictions. Never been one to keep up with the Joneses or buy things to impress people.