It’s been a little over a week since I last blogged about my minimal spending. I can honestly say that I am learning a lot about how I spend money and how I rationalize everything.
Last Monday, I walked into a furniture store and bought a new bed. Now most people would say “that’s a luxury”, and my response is, “tell my back that”. While I didn’t go to an expensive furniture store, I did buy a decent queen size bed. I went to Kmart to try to find sheets, but nothing clicked. I remembered that I had a gift card and went to Macy’s on a whim. Found a sheet set I liked that was on sale, used a gift card my mom gave me, and all together I ended up only spending a third of what the sheets normally sell for.
On that same day, I went out and had dinner with a friend who was celebrating her birthday.
On Wednesday, a day before my bed would be delivered, I realized that the layout I envisioned wasn’t going to work, and I had to get rid of my dresser ASAP. For most people, that would be an agonizing decision. When my family moved into our current space, the movers told me that the dresser’s back was falling apart and it wouldn’t survive another move. They had to put my stuff in boxes in order to keep everything from spilling out. I threw out the mirror that detached itself from the dresser years ago. I knew this day was coming so I rushed to have someone haul the dresser out of my room. I made sure to hire someone local and check out reviews to see if others said they were cheaper than the national franchise. They were. Compared to what my family paid to have a TV and refrigerator hauled off $110 seemed reasonable. I did feel sorry that the guy had to break up the dresser with his bare hands and haul the pieces down three flights of stairs by himself. It was well worth the price.
I thought I received a quote at $185 for delivery before leaving the furniture store. I knew that I had to pay cash for it and that was a separate charge from the furniture itself. I would pay the delivery person after service was rendered. Thursday I spent the day waiting. I asked for an evening delivery time and I got 4 PM with a four hour window. Fine by me. I had a ton of things to do around the house. I saw the guy pull up at 7 PM with my bed. He was also by himself. He hauled up a queen size bed frame, matress and box spring. He hauled away my old twin mattress and box spring. Unlike the dresser hauler, this guy and I actually had a decent conversation. Told me that he is a contractor for the delivery service company and that he prefers to work by himself. Says he gets the job done faster. He even was nice enough to move my nightstand to another part of my room when yet another layout didn’t work. After he showed me my paperwork the whole job ended up costing $180. Since all the money was going to corporate, I just gave him the difference. Not much but it was something.
About two hours later, my friend called me and told me to drive her to the ER because she fell and twisted her ankle badly. I went to her house and asked her if she had food. Nope. Neither had I so that was a trip to Jack and the Box. I paid for both of us.
Friday night I ate dinner with friends and Saturday I went out with those same friends and ate lunch.
Today, I bought groceries.
So through all of this, I learned that I usually spend money when I hang out with friends. While I didn’t like ordering all the food that I did Friday and Saturday, I ate all of it so my stomach was bigger than my eyes this time. The time that I spent with friends, supporting them and celebrating their presence in my life really makes dropping $16 per meal worth it.
I also spend money when I feel like the convenience of having someone else do something for me would save me more time than money. I also like to reward people who are trying to make an honest living. I know when my body is telling me that something old will no longer be acceptable. That getting rid of the old to make room for the new is a constant theme in life that the person we were yesterday isn’t the same person as today. We must look at the signs that this thing can no longer do it’s basic job function and decide to get rid of it. We must discard things that no longer work for us and expand ourselves to make room for the new and improved.
And, we must also have groceries while doing so.