Get me in front of Amazon.com and I can add about a billion things to my cart. I love Amazon. I love staying on financial track a lot more though.
There are things I really want, that I have added to my cart a few times. A hair curling iron that sucks your hair into a spiral and curls it automatically. YES! I must have added that to the cart about four times now, knowing how infinitely better my life will be, with that $150 curling iron. But then it dawns on me that it is a $150 curling iron, and I work hard for $150, the same amount of money it would cost to take my husband and children to Main Event in Frisco, Texas for some wicked cool bowling, laser tag and games of pool. Inevitably, I choose something other than the curling iron.
There are these designer jeans I want to buy. I’ve noticed some of the cool chicks wearing them here, and they have some kind of butt lifting technology. Now, I carry my weight in my tummy and chest, my hips and butt (and legs) are kind of small actually. Nonetheless, how fabulous would my butt look? Ah-mazing! I want them. At least twice a week they find their way into my Amazon cart, only to be deleted.
I am the kind of shopper that my digital marketing colleagues hate. The ones that try to crack the “cart abandonment” code of serial digital window shoppers like me.
Our house is small (but it is ours). Our mortgage is equivalent to 65% of our annual gross earnings. That’s a freaking great ratio. It needs a deck out back, and some dead trees cut down, and we have a thick forest that I am sure hides a werewolf or two (or in the very least a few copperhead snakes and a family of tarantulas). But it’s ours. This cheap little place to live is comfortable, almost new on the inside, cottage like and cute as a button from the outside. And we still had room for the extra beer fridge in the garage. #Victory!
I scored an amazing desk (used but virtually new) from a ‘princess” out toward Sanger. She drove a $60k big new truck, and her husband told her that he wasn’t paying for their storage unit anymore, so she had to purge some of the high-ticket things she had no room for in her home. For $150 I scored a World Market solid Acacia wood desk and chair. Kevin grumbled a bit as it was a drive to pick it up, but you know “happy wife happy life”.
I like garage sales and thrift shops, particularly for finding cool fishing lures (retro ones) and art supplies. Old frames that I might paint something beautiful on. I am currently hunting for a full-size metal art easel for outside. While dogs “do their business” I can “do some painting”. When you have dogs that are on the low end of the food chain, it’s best to supervise them outdoors.
In 2013, someone didn’t keep her word to me. Today I found out that something I was still “paying off” from Canada (which really shouldn’t have been mine to pay off at all) was taken care of. What a lovely surprise! The details don’t matter, and it happened as a result of legalities, not out of a sense of “what is right” or “regret” or other emotion that I am owed I think by this person. Imagine calling to pay a bill, to find out it’s your last payment? I was elated! Almost $100 per month just found it’s way back into my budget.
Which means technically, I could buy that curling iron. But I won’t. Not yet. Maybe in the Fall. Or I’ll ask for it for Christmas? No… I wouldn’t expect an expensive gift like that from anyone. Why am I hung up on the price?
Maybe because in many times of my life, $150 was my grocery budget for the entire month. Including Diet Pepsi and Vodka (back in my angry days).
I mean the curling iron probably doesn’t even work that well, although it worked very well for this lovely girl I worked with at IDLife. Her hair was always beautiful. I haz hair envy. Damned health conditions… I’m three steps from Sinead, yanno?
Frugal is good. Some people spend their entire lives trying to avoid it, like it is the most terrifying thing in the world to not have money to blow. Every time that has been my reality, I reinvented my definition of fun. I found free stuff to do. I would invite one of my male friends to a $5 slurpee date (which really was a walk, photo shoot in the cemetery of statuary, and two jumbo Diet Pepsi drinks). I didn’t feel deprived. I felt… alive.
Okay, so I added the curling iron to my “favorites” on my Amazon profile. Maybe it can be an award for a new financial benchmark. Then I’ll have earned it right?
Thank you for the kiss on the cheek this afternoon, Karma. I do keep score in my head, but I am always grateful for a reward from you, no matter how overdue. Scratch another thing off the “paid off” list, and full-steam ahead to the land of zero debt, a home with an inground pool, a tree house office (what???), solar panels, garden, fruit trees … [insert happy sigh]. Consider my eye on the ball.
But my eye is on other things too. Like a fun, hot, sunny summer with my Texas family and an impending visit (the first face-to-face one in six years) from Aunt Kimmy. And the twins were excited to learn that we are going to buy her ticket, because they really wanted to. Even (apparently) if they had to do extra chores to contribute. 😉
Practical, un-baller, rational living and achieving our goals suits me just fine. I know where to buy cheap tomatoes. And my husband is an even better and more frugal grocery shopper than I am.
Seriously, that’s hot.
Oh, they also make the curling iron in red.