Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Untitled- For now.

Like going to rite aid? Look who shops there...

Spending Triggers.. changepot update etc.

April 11th, 2006
The past couple of days have been absolutely wonderful! Spring is finally here- my flowers survived the freak april snowstorm and all is well in this little corner of Staten Island!

After reading some self-help/ motivational books over winter break, I've decided to pay more attention to HOW I spend money- what triggers me, etc. I know now that 99% of my impulsive spending happens because I want to buy things for my kids- things I secretly wanted but couldn't have when I was young. I decided to make it a complete experiment (notebook et al!)
here is what I did for two weeks:

-Created a shopping chart/log for two weeks (March 25-April 8)

- Checked off when I made purchases that
weren't on the budget and wrote down the amount (pretax) on a separate column. Wrote down who it was for and why I thought it was "justified".

After the two weeks were up, I tallied the amount spent and the results were shocking. While I exercised some restraint because of the physical hassle of whipping out my chart in public every time I bought something, I managed to spend $317 on my family (dog included). Some of that hard earned dough bought PSP video games, wicker style purses, bratz accessories, and enough jellybeans to feed the state of Vermont! The oddest purchase was two packs of cherry air freshener for $1.39 each at 2:10am at the local gas station and the reason: "Hubby's boots.". Well, at least it wasn't cigarettes!

So..the lesson I learned here is that despite my frugal attempts to save save save (envelope systems, conserve energy etc), old habits are hard to break. I hadn't set up a "spending account" prior to my little investigation and the truth is sometimes you just WANT to spend on something trivial (the American marketing industry wouldn't survive if we wouldn't shop impulsively!). Since I spent over 300 bucks in two weeks, I have now added this new category to my monthly budgeting cycle.

So ask yourself this... when you went shopping last time, how many items did YOU buy that were absolutely unneccesary (price has nothing to do with it! It would be an interesting thing to tally up, wouldn't it?


Today we found a total of 69cents (544pm)-1 quarter, 3 dimes and 14 pennies. We found 14 cents (1 dime, 4 pennies) of today's total on the way to pick up DD (walking 4.4 miles!) When we got back we decided to walk to the nearby pizza parlor and found more money. Hubby found a shiny new quarter and the pennies we found were largely unrecognizable due to the amount of corrosive materials caked on the surface. Later in the afternoon, we walked to a nearby supermarket and found 26 cents (2 dimes and six pennies). I stuck the gross ones in a container and cleaned them up. Wow.. these few days have yielded high returns.. i'm shocked.


Today we bought 4 indoor plants. Each family member has named them accordingly
Hubby has named his Spike.
Bee named hers Lilian.
Kit named hers Flower.
and mine is Suegra (spanish for "mother in law").

I will take pics and post em' later.

Total today: $0.69

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