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Subject: Will you take the Spend Free Challenge with me? rss

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Mike Bourgeois
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I've been challenged by friends to take the Spend Free Challenge and I'm looking for other folks who'd like to give it a try as well. I don't have any back info on it so I can't direct you to a spot that might be more informative than what I know.

Spend Free Challenge: challenge yourself to go on a total spending freeze for the period of 1 month.

You may spend money on food, rent/mortgage or sundries related to business, health or family matters. I.E. gas to keep the car running, ink cartridge if your home business computer runs out or such neccessities.

I'll be beginning the challenge on Monday July 20th and running it till Thursday August 20th. I'm to keep a running total of what I spend for neccessities... that I'll be listing in my Geek So Good So Far journal.

If you'd like to join me then please feel free... if not then please offer encouragement. At the end I'll figure out if it stressed me out enough to stop or if I'll keep this up.

Thanks for reading.
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If Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Then Actions x2 Speak Louder Than Actions
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So what am I not spending? I think I'm already doing this.
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J
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I think it means no entertainment budget, no meals out, and NO GAMES!
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Mike Bourgeois
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joebelanger wrote:
So what am I not spending? I think I'm already doing this.


Jarred is right... sorry Joe... no spending of cash, credit, bottle returns.

For the period of 1 month it's necessities only.
 
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Josh
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Beer's a food, right?
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Mystery McMysteryface
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mbourgeois wrote:
joebelanger wrote:
So what am I not spending? I think I'm already doing this.


Jarred is right... sorry Joe... no spending of cash, credit, bottle returns.

For the period of 1 month it's necessities only.


OK, you just described my life!!!

Honestly, I've bought only 6 new games in one year--3 separate purchases (I've thrifted another five and traded one for two more). Everything else has been essentials. We rarely eat out and took our first vacation, if you can call it that, at the beginning of the year to take our daughter 1 day to Disney. We just had lots of unforeseen emergency expenses this summer and are definitely NOT spending on anything that is not a necessity.

//pity party oversoblue

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Mike Bourgeois
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Mark, take your gripes to RSP. Open a thread and give it a go. Otherwise I don't want you here derailing my thread. Thanks.
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Mike Bourgeois
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EgorjLileli wrote:
mbourgeois wrote:
joebelanger wrote:
So what am I not spending? I think I'm already doing this.


Jarred is right... sorry Joe... no spending of cash, credit, bottle returns.

For the period of 1 month it's necessities only.


OK, you just described my life!!!

Honestly, I've bought only 6 new games in one year--3 separate purchases (I've thrifted another five and traded one for two more). Everything else has been essentials. We rarely eat out and took our first vacation, if you can call it that, at the beginning of the year to take our daughter 1 day to Disney. We just had lots of unforeseen emergency expenses this summer and are definitely NOT spending on anything that is not a necessity.

//pity party oversoblue



Mrs. Bob... if you're living it then you know how important it is to watch what you spend so that when emergencies do come up you have the wherewithal to deal with it. Well I've been through some very expensive emergencies in the past little bit... and we weathered them... but I did realize that where we made it through by scraping... we could have done better even if just I stopped doing some of my impulse spends. So I'm trying to learn to not give into the random impulse of thoughtless buying. If I can do it for a month then it should be easier to continue living responsibly and when the next emergency comes... we won't be counting dollars. We'll just deal with it and go on.
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Mystery McMysteryface
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mbourgeois wrote:
EgorjLileli wrote:
mbourgeois wrote:
joebelanger wrote:
So what am I not spending? I think I'm already doing this.


Jarred is right... sorry Joe... no spending of cash, credit, bottle returns.

For the period of 1 month it's necessities only.


OK, you just described my life!!!

Honestly, I've bought only 6 new games in one year--3 separate purchases (I've thrifted another five and traded one for two more). Everything else has been essentials. We rarely eat out and took our first vacation, if you can call it that, at the beginning of the year to take our daughter 1 day to Disney. We just had lots of unforeseen emergency expenses this summer and are definitely NOT spending on anything that is not a necessity.

//pity party over:soblue:



Mrs. Bob... if you're living it then you know how important it is to watch what you spend so that when emergencies do come up you have the wherewithal to deal with it. Well I've been through some very expensive emergencies in the past little bit... and we weathered them... but I did realize that where we made it through by scraping... we could have done better even if just I stopped doing some of my impulse spends. So I'm trying to learn to not give into the random impulse of thoughtless buying. If I can do it for a month then it should be easier to continue living responsibly and when the next emergency comes... we won't be counting dollars. We'll just deal with it and go on.


Well, luckily, we made some significant changes and did some debt-reduction and started saving last year. So, we are not facing these emergency expenses with large debts and zero savings--like in the past. We will weather it, but need to keep our belts tightened. It's hard as everything goes up significantly except our salaries. We stopped both cell phones, increased our energy efficiency, and are more prudent at the grocery store.

I have always been a thrifty shopper opting for quality items that are reduced or on clearance. I have never bought full-price retail for anything and never will. We both brown bag and don't spend on vending machines or gas station goodies.

My only luxury is the thrift stores which I visit during lunch, and I've stopped it for a few months as well.
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Mystery McMysteryface
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chiddler wrote:
mbourgeois wrote:
Mark, take your gripes to RSP. Open a thread and give it a go. Otherwise I don't want you here derailing my thread. Thanks.


If you post anything in a public forum you have to accept comments. I want to discourage others from following your example, so I responded in that vein. I don't consider it derailing to address the specific point of the thread - albeit in a way that doesn't please the person who started the thread.

I have nothing further to add on the subject, but I hope nobody actually signs on.


Well, if others were like me...........lots of businesses would close: Fast Food, movie theaters, junk food, soft drinks, illegal drugs, cigarettes, and porn. Then maybe there would be more and new businesses for healthy food, restaurants, activities and nature/arts entertainment. It would probably see a lot of health care facilities and drug makers lose business as the general population would be healthier and need less medical care and medications. Hey!! Maybe our health care costs would go down!! Wow!!!

shake I am terrible and may start a BIG problem.


Cool it Mark, we're not aiming to take over the world anytime soon.
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Amy Wiles
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At the beginning of June, we gave ourselves sort of an allowance of $30 of free spending money/month and one free eating out. Whatever we don't spend, we can carry over month-to-month. If we can save up enough money, we can get a boardgame or something.

it's working pretty well. I think, at least for us, cutting all excess spending wouldn't have worked because it was would have been too strict. Now we just see how much we can not spend on extraneous stuff, but still have a little "fun money."

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Mike Bourgeois
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amwiles wrote:

At the beginning of June, we gave ourselves sort of an allowance of $30 of free spending money/month and one free eating out. Whatever we don't spend, we can carry over month-to-month. If we can save up enough money, we can get a boardgame or something.

it's working pretty well. I think, at least for us, cutting all excess spending wouldn't have worked because it was would have been too strict. Now we just see how much we can not spend on extraneous stuff, but still have a little "fun money."



It's a good idea. But before I could start back with a limited spending fund I'd really want to see if I could be truely responsible to myself and the household in a financial way. Perhaps after the month I'll look at setting up a limited spending pool for myself. But first things first.
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Mystery McMysteryface
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mbourgeois wrote:
amwiles wrote:

At the beginning of June, we gave ourselves sort of an allowance of $30 of free spending money/month and one free eating out. Whatever we don't spend, we can carry over month-to-month. If we can save up enough money, we can get a boardgame or something.

it's working pretty well. I think, at least for us, cutting all excess spending wouldn't have worked because it was would have been too strict. Now we just see how much we can not spend on extraneous stuff, but still have a little "fun money."



It's a good idea. But before I could start back with a limited spending fund I'd really want to see if I could be truely responsible to myself and the household in a financial way. Perhaps after the month I'll look at setting up a limited spending pool for myself. But first things first.


That sounds good, but we basically try not to spend at all. Our only entertainment is the Internet--which is bundled in with our land line and long distance, and Netflix.

I forgot to mention we've been 3 years without network TV or cable and have NOT really missed it (or the expense) at all!!

Oh no!! More businesses that will fold if everyone was like me!!: Cable companies, network TV programming, everything sold/pushed at us in commercials during cable/TV programs, merchandising junk from popular TV shows (especially the ones for kids), sports teams merchandising, Home Shopping Channels, and anxiety medication from watching the news!!!wowsurprise
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J
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you may find this of interest:

http://blog.wesabe.com/2008/12/08/7-tips-to-a-successful-no-...
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Amy Wiles
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EgorjLileli wrote:
That sounds good, but we basically try not to spend at all. Our only entertainment is the Internet--which is bundled in with our land line and long distance, and Netflix.

I forgot to mention we've been 3 years without network TV or cable and have NOT really missed it (or the expense) at all!!

Oh no!! More businesses that will fold if everyone was like me!!: Cable companies, network TV programming, everything sold/pushed at us in commercials during cable/TV programs, merchandising junk from popular TV shows (especially the ones for kids), sports teams merchandising, Home Shopping Channels, and anxiety medication from watching the news!!!wowsurprise


We don't have entertainment expenses, either. Cable internet (I work from home often and Netflix. We haven't had cable TV for about 6 years -- it's too expensive! When we canceled, we started up the Netflix account and were saving at least half the monthly fee.

Most of what we were spending on were small things -- a coffee here, a lunch there. We'd stop by the books store to browse and buy something we really didn't need, or hadn't even intended on purchasing when we walked in the door. So far, we're doing well and have cut back our spending!

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J
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I spend tons of money all the time, but that's because I have no responsibilities beyond myself and my own bills. I think your plan is a good exercise for people to practice spending responsibly, or to prepare for a longer term lifestyle change. I, however, get forced to do this for much longer than a month when I deploy, so I'm not particularly inclined to participate in this coordinated effort. Good luck though.
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Mike Bourgeois
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jarredscott78 wrote:
I spend tons of money all the time, but that's because I have no responsibilities beyond myself and my own bills. I think your plan is a good exercise for people to practice spending responsibly, or to prepare for a longer term lifestyle change. I, however, get forced to do this for much longer than a month when I deploy, so I'm not particularly inclined to participate in this coordinated effort. Good luck though.


Thanks for the well wishes.

Stupid question... do you have to do the majority of your shopping for personal items online or at what do they call it... the PX? (on base store) Do they have local markets where you can shop for items or is it frowned up for safety reasons?

Sorry, I really don't have the slightest idea and so I figured I'd ask... can't hurt right?
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I used to be really really good at this game. I was poor.
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mbourgeois wrote:


Stupid question... do you have to do the majority of your shopping for personal items online or at what do they call it... the PX? (on base store) Do they have local markets where you can shop for items or is it frowned up for safety reasons?

Sorry, I really don't have the slightest idea and so I figured I'd ask... can't hurt right?


Deployment spending 101:

There is one tiny store (PX) that will sell us toiletries, candy, etc. I almost never go there.

I place orders at drugstore.com whenever I need to replenish. It takes three weeks to arrive.

Haircuts are five bucks and I get one every three weeks or so.

Food is free but sometimes I get a pizza at the Italian Pizzeria, six bucks.

Um, yeah. I think that's all I've spend in the past nine months, about $50 a month. I have my mortgages and a few bills back home but out here I spend almost nothing.
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Mystery McMysteryface
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jarredscott78 wrote:
mbourgeois wrote:


Stupid question... do you have to do the majority of your shopping for personal items online or at what do they call it... the PX? (on base store) Do they have local markets where you can shop for items or is it frowned up for safety reasons?

Sorry, I really don't have the slightest idea and so I figured I'd ask... can't hurt right?


Deployment spending 101:

There is one tiny store (PX) that will sell us toiletries, candy, etc. I almost never go there.

I place orders at drugstore.com whenever I need to replenish. It takes three weeks to arrive.

Haircuts are five bucks and I get one every three weeks or so.

Food is free but sometimes I get a pizza at the Italian Pizzeria, six bucks.

Um, yeah. I think that's all I've spend in the past nine months, about $50 a month. I have my mortgages and a few bills back home but out here I spend almost nothing.


Where do you buy your espresso? Or do you brew it yourself?
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EgorjLileli wrote:


Where do you buy your espresso? Or do you brew it yourself?

Italian Pizzeria (60 cents) or I make strong black coffee for myself.
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I think one good outcome of this exercise would be the awareness of all the unconscious things we spend money on.

We can get into habits of spending money thoughtlessly and I think this is ONE way that you can start to see where the money goes.
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i use wesabe to manage my finances. it makes it very easy to track spending and manage my monthly budget. and it's free



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Jarred, I'm surprised that haircuts cost $$. I would have thought they'd be "on tap."
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Good on ye for trying to make a dent, Mike, and good luck!
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