Two rebate checks came yesterday, which brought my monthly spending down $8.50. Then, we stopped at the grocery store for a few things, and I used up the end of my gift card and had to spend 50 cents out of pocket because I didn’t have another one with me.
So overall, I spent -$8 yesterday, which brings my monthly total spending down to $688.
I’ve learned a lot from tracking my spending the past 2 months. Firstly, I think my spending is actually right around where I thought it was, so I’m going to stop keeping track.
In January and February, I spent an average of $815 a month, which is about $28/day. I feel like we did everything we wanted to do, and I didn’t exactly skimp on the treats in those months. I bought clothes, presents, dinners out, way too much nail polish, and basically whatever I wanted.
I think I could still comfortably live on $500/month, but living on $800 is way more comfortable and easier. And worth it. That extra $10/day adds a lot of wiggle room that I’m glad to have. There’s saving and being frugal, and then there’s missing out on life. At this season in my life, saving that extra $10/day is unnecessary.
I think one of the big lessons here is to realize that money can be “unspent”. Rebates can be filed. Items can be returned. Credit card rewards and other incentives can be redeemed. By looking at spending as a two-way street, I’ve been able to lower my spending each month in ways that don’t really impact my life or have me give up anything I want.
At this point, based on the last two months, I estimate that my annual spending in 2014 will be approximately $6,000. If I add a month-long trip to Europe in there, which I’m hoping to do, the spending will probably increase to $8,000. Feeling pretty good about that!
Tomorrow’s the last day this blog will be available, so if there’s anything you want to know, now would be the time to ask!