That's kinda pathetic.
In my defense, two of those trips don't really count. I went on Monday, but forgot to bring an item I needed to return. So when I was in the area on Wednesday I just went to make the return and left as soon as I did. Then I went again on Saturday because Giada's cookware was 40% off on cartwheel (still is if you're interested) and they had an additional 25% off with their mobile coupons. We needed a new wok so I wanted to snag up this good deal. I also bought her cast iron dutch oven for $35 - score! But I realized the 25% off only came off the dutch oven and not the wok (which was the point of Saturday's trip in the first place) and since I had another 25% off coupon I got with my receipt, I took the wok back on Sunday to get it at the super discounted price.
Anyway, all this to say that I got a heck of a deal - but when I brag about these things to Miles all he hears is "I bought more crap at Target."
So it's really good that today I started a financial fast. I got the idea from Brooke who recently blogged about it and shared this NPR podcast about a 21 day financial fast. The idea being that for three weeks you can't buy anything that is not essential (groceries, medicine, etc) and you can't use your credit and debit card - you must pay in cash for any essential purchases.
I wanted to give this a shot as it will be interesting (potentially depressing) to see just where I am spending money that I really don't need to be. We are pretty good about tracking our finances closely anyway, but I think this will give me an even clearer picture of what is truly necessary. It also is good because it requires that I really plan things out. For example, I can buy groceries, but I need to go with a more detailed list which will mean that I will need to do a better job meal planning so as to avoid buying food that we don't eat, or that's not essential (like ice cream - though the necessity of ice cream is probably debatable).
I know right now there will be times I will cheat. But I plan to track all those cheats/justified purchases so that I can tally up how much they cost during the three week period. Tomorrow I am mailing out a gift to a baby shower I'm unable to attend. I made the gift so it didn't cost me anything, but the postage to mail it will and that isn't essential. So little things like that will be little cheats I'll have to track and try to limit.
I'm also cheating by not letting this impact Finn. We go to open gym once or twice a week and it only costs $5 for an hour and a half. Sure it's not essential, but I'd say that getting out of the house and letting him burn off some energy is essential to my sanity and you can't put a price on that!
I'm interested to see if we have a little extra money this month when the three weeks are up, but mostly curious how this will impact my future spending habits.
So for the next three weeks - please don't talk to me about any good deals or cute finds at Target, or anywhere else for that matter.
Also, I went ahead and bought ice cream yesterday before the fast started. Just thinking ahead.