Money Matters

A confession

It’s been a year since I started blogging about thrift. During this time, I’ve been eating in instead of dining out, choosing home cinema over Hoyts Cinema, and borrowing books instead of buying them. The change in habits have allowed me to clear my credit card debt and inject more than the minimum fortnightly repayment into the home loan.

But lately I’ve been restless: Maltesers and the latest Super Food Ideas are sneaking into the green bag, walking past JB HiFi has become a liability, and whenever I spot the pair of $200 boots that I bought on impulse, still in their box on the bedroom floor, I wonder if Wittner do ‘change of mind’ refunds. All are signs that I’m losing control.

It’s impossible to completely abstain from spending for the sake of spending. Like ex-smokers, we reformed spendaholics simultaneously abhor and crave the hit that accompanies a purchase. When we do give in, there’s the momentary high of splashing out hundreds of dollars at Flower Drum followed by something akin to the Great Depression: a need to punish ourselves with tinned food for the rest of the month.

The regret that follows is worse for a mustbethrifty blogger such as myself, since it’s accompanied with the sense of ‘losing face’. On one hand, I’m writing about avoiding unnecessary expenditure (here and here); on the other hand, I’m secretly purchasing the latest Muppets movie, which upon watching it, I realise I could really do without.

So, inspired by We Can Have Everything!’s post on going ‘off the frugal rails’, I thought I’d ‘fess up and share with you all the things I should have not bought but did anyway:

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Altogether, I think I spent $646.95, money that my offset account and I will never see again.

Have I managed to shame myself back into thriftiness? Only time and the next few credit card statements will tell. 😦

6 thoughts on “A confession

  1. I don’t think you can really begrudge yourself a $2 bag of Maltesers!! Or a $3 copy of Super Food Ideas. Or that doorbell, because it’s seriously adorable. The boots and the DVDs, however…

    Speaking of DVDs, I’m going to sound like a sales pitch for a minute. It’s amazing how few DVDs I’ve bought since I got Quickflix. I think it’s the joy of getting new and exciting things to watch in the post ALL THE TIME. It takes the edge off somehow. And sure, it costs me $30 a month. But considering I was spending at least $50-$60 a month on DVDs that I would watch once and then forget I owned, I suspect it’s worth it. (Although I’m currently rotting my brain rewatching The X-Files. So…there’s that)

    A family friend told me recently that her daughter spends $400 a month – her full income (aah, undergrad…) – on clothes and entertainment. I don’t think I’ve spent that much on clothes and entertainment ALL YEAR. Aaaah, youth! (Which is code for “In the grand scheme of things, maybe your spending isn’t so bad!”)

    1. I think the occasional splurge is okay, but when it becomes habitual over a 30-year period then it’s fail. If I bought a packet of Maltesers with every weekly grocery shop over 30 years, that would equate to $3120-worth of Maltesers (plus compounding interest). Eek.

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