To Buy or Not To Buy

I find inaction frustrating. I am a do-er, not a sit stiller.  NOT eating food to lose weight or NOT spending money to build up my savings account just annoys me to no end, but lately the budget has gone off the rails around here.  Drawers are bursting with clothes and I have a terrible case of the gimmes, when in reality there’s lots of things we need to save money for, and another small pink cardigan isn’t one of those things.   And somehow every weekend and every outing has become about buying things, and errands to go get things, and I just really need to spend less time in Target.  I am going down some weird shopping addiction route and I’d like to nip that in the bud right now.   And let’s be honest – $12 spent on clothes on clearance that we don’t need is still $12 I could have put towards something we do need.  (Man, do I have a hard time resisting a good deal.  The 75% stickers at Target CALL TO ME.)

So I am going on a buying things moratorium.  Until the end of April, I’m not buying anything but groceries and diapers and stuff like that.  Even extras like coffee have to come from the grocery store, not the fancy coffee store.

I am definitely going to  have to post some of the things I’m not buying, just to make myself feel better about all of the great deals I’m missing out on.  Maybe I can con someone else into buying a five pound bag of gummi bears on sale.

Oh, and there are four exceptions.  (Of course). I am allowed to buy:

1.  a birthday present for my brother

2. a circle cutter for my waxed paper chandelier project

3. a radio for my kitchen because being in my kitchen without NPR makes me sad


4. stuff for the garden, because it’s going in April 1st and we’re going to need to buy some things for that.

When my experiment is over if I have been successful, I get to buy:

silverware, new sheets, and an overpriced double stroller.

Wish me luck!   I am going to keep a list of stuff that I really really wish I was buying.  Maybe in a month or two that stuff will seem less important, and if not, then hopefully I will have saved up the money to buy it.

Might be time to sell your stock in


12 Responses

  1. I know many people with unfortunate Target addictions. I am glad that there isn’t one in my local zone.

  2. I so identify with being a do-er (though not to the extent of refinishing wood floors, as per my previous comment.) There is always a list of projects and wants and needs on our refrigerator. Projects like just NOT SPENDING ANYTHING for a while drive me crazy. Shopping around for great deals? Fantastic. I don’t need to shop at Gucci- a garage sale find will thrill me! I just need to be thrilled by SOMETHING. Looking at a slowly, slowly growing savings account just doesn’t do it for me, though I truly admire those for whom it does… do it.
    But the “let’s just not buy ANYTHING if we don’t need it” mantra is kind of a standing order around here right now. Food and cleaning products are the only “cheats” I can justify, so I have to get my thrills out of finding a really good price on a STICK VAC and organic blueberries. Better than nothing, I guess.

  3. Good luck! I am usually pretty good at resisting, except when it comes to books. And really that makes no sense because I can check books out for FREE at the library to read and see if I, you know, actually like them before I go spending money on them. But still, Borders is closing here and those sales prices are calling my name!

  4. I needed to read this. Our budget is bursting too and it shouldn’t be. I’ve pulling WAY back and I sure hope it helps.

  5. I have a closet full of 75% off stuff that I don’t need. I need professional help.

    I am in awe of your resolve.

    Freckles in April | a modest fashion and lifestyle blog

  6. I must know what this waxed paper chandelier project is…sounds intriguing!

    I’ve had to unsubscribe from a lot of email lists I was on (Pottery Barn, Williams-Sonoma) so that I wouldn’t be tempted to “just look”, since I don’t EVER just look. I almost ALWAYS buy. But sometimes, it’s either that or eat a tub of ice cream and I’m already having trouble fitting into my pants, so…there you go.

  7. We’re doing the same thing for April, but with limited exceptions (we get a few treats to break things up, but they must be purchased with gift cards). I think it will be really good for our free-wheeling spending habits & will hopefully break me of the see it, want it, buy it habit. Good luck to you!

  8. You’re crazy and that waxed paper chandelier will give you carpal tunnel. 😉 But I still love mine and it was totally worth it. Get the Martha Stewart one with the disk that you insert the dowel-knife thing into. Don’t get the hole punch one.
    Making a wax paper chandelier IS a good way to loose all your spare time and therefore not spend money, though! 🙂

  9. Ugh – I hate that feeling of just buying buying buying. Good for you for breaking the cycle! Good luck!

  10. I can’t walk out of Target without dropping $50. I know how you feel. Perhaps I should follow your lead.

    Good luck!

  11. I need a moratorium on Target, too. And Amazon. :/

  12. I finished a quarter long “no shopping” moratorium on March 21st (started December 21st in an attempt not to go crazy that last week before Christmas).

    The first month was really hard, and then it got a lot easier. And I have noticed a huge change in how I look at shopping and entertainment. I think it might become a yearly moratorium, because I learned a lot.

    On the other hand, I gave up meat for Lent and that has been kicking my butt for almost 45 days now. Giving up meat has been harder than giving up shopping. Truly.

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