Thursday, February 26, 2009

How much it all costs

Oh Martha, oh Christmas... oh wait, that is from the Grinch movie!  But still... how i love the Martha Stewart Magazines!  With each magazine costing 4.99 per month.  On average i spent 9.98 a month on Martha Stewart Magazines. ($119.76)

Print Magazine *drool* I can't believe i gave up this magazine.  Oh the things we do for the better life! This is my all time favorite magazine, all time favorite!  Anyone in the graphic world or even if you just enjoy getting inspiration from art, this magazine is awesome!  This magazine was $10 a month for me.  And twice a year there was a very special issue that was 39.00 for just the one magazine.  Yes, i know... all for paper! ($198.00)
Oh ok, you can stop the hating people for loving Starbucks.  You have to give credit to this company for packaging their drinks in their wonderful traveling cups and pretty things.  They knew what they were doing, and now other places are jumping on board. McDonalds, Duncan Doughnuts, etc.  They know that the coffee industry is HUGE, we're all addicted.  Now here is my spending.  On average 3 times a week. My Tall ice tea (sweetened) is 1.71.  And that worked out to be 20.52 per month.  If you add on the Starbucks trips that i took Claire with me, which is once a week you would have to add on 19.20 per month for her tall hot chocolate and her treat food of a cookie or other item. (246.24 + 230.40 =$476.64)

These are me...these are things that i have gotten use to being my normal spending each month.  No more.  January changed everything.  It changed the way i look at every purchase i make.  I use to consider my magazines to be like books.  I read them, i reread them, and i shelved them in nice containers.  I would get pissy if someone bent the corners of my pages at all.  If you tossed my magazines around like they were just disposable, i wasn't a happy camper.  But i had to weed out my favorite magazines to move with me.  And most of them were donated to people i know, but i also know that they will read them and toss them and eventually they will end up in a landfill.  So i have quit. Cold turkey (OH MY HOW HARD IT HAS BEEN!).  And i have not purchased a magazine for 2 solid months.  

I got a gift card for $50 on Christmas day for Starbucks.  It still has 28.00 on it.  Wow, 28 whole dollars!  It seems like nothing, but for me... it is the world of tea at my finger tips, but only when i am really in a pure desire of needing a tea.  I had to cut out taking Claire to get her 2.85 tall Hot Chocolate, and Target gives you a cookie for free.... for FREE! if you ask at the pastry counter.  We have learned to just do without a lot these days.

A lesson in spending, sure.  A lesson in life, sure.  A lesson in being humble, for sure.  I feel silly even typing up this blog because it is silly to feel deprived of a magazine or a Starbucks drink.  People are doing without clean water on this planet, and i'm sitting here complaining that i had to cut back on my Starbucks spending!  How dare i!  

The hard truth is to realize that this spending is on WANTS and not NEEDS.  I could add so much more into this posting, but i picked the top 3 things that i miss the most in our cut backs.  If you were to add up all of the numbers in () you would get a total of...$794.40.  That is almost a thousand dollars on things that i do not need at all.  

I really desire a macro lens for my camera, a tele lens for my camera... these are not needs, but if i had these lenses i could take my photography to another level and i could perhaps actually learn more, and even start selling images?  It is a dream to one day purchase a better camera with better lenses, but i never have the money to invest.  The one lens is $500.00.  All i have to do is put the unspent money for Starbucks and magazines in a jar and i would have that money in less than 1 year!  Something i never stopped to think about.

We all do it. We all spend a little here and a little there on things that are disposable and not NEEDS.

So today, i challenge you to do the same.  Take an item that you love, but that you do not need to survive.  Give it up.    Let me know how that goes for you too :o)

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