Remember how I did NoSpend November last year? Well this year I decided to try it in December. There are a couple of reasons for this shift. First of all I had a vacation planned already for November so I didn't want to skimp on it since vacations for me are so rare. The other reason is that while last November was difficult (primarily because of football season) it wasn't as big a stretch to pull off. Christmas is a big spending time and I found that instead of really saving on holiday spending, it could have been differed. So is it really no spend? Tough call. So in that spirit I modified one rule from 09. No Christmas stockpiling.
No Change November sprung as a result of things being moved to December. I can now compare it to December as well as last November. I also get a chance to see if I am able to track spending when it is happening all the time. Lets see how it all goes! Also of note, I am changing how I list acquired and consumed. If I acquired a cookie and ate it all in the same day, it will only be listed in consumed. Acquired will only be present for things that make it to the end of the day. The exception to this is cashflow.
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Cash: $101.03 (+$84.12)
Day 31: Done-zo
I hate coming home to a messy house but here I am again. I spend a good chunk of time cleaning and putting things away. Even did some laundry last night and more today. One thing I knew I had to do today was get to the post office. If you recall, I made a rule that I can't spend any Christmas money from anyone unless I sent them a thankyou card or gave them a gift. Check, cash or gift card, the rules are the same. I was able to find some thank you cards that survived the flood so I wrote out a couple and trotted off to the post office. When I got there I picked up my mail too. In the mail I had a few more goodies. $40 back from medical reimbursement, two movies passes and a gift card to the theater (thanks to Discover points), and lots of fun Christmas cards! I ordered the tickets a while back on the 16th along with a Gap gift card. The Gap credit came as a digital reward thing, but the tickets were paper. I forgot to put the Gap thing in my journal here though.
Christmas makes this month a little tricky to get a handle on. It could be argued that it is somewhat like a focused bartering event. Even all the food that was provided for me falls in line with the same rules I had away from home. I shared my own food, made desserts, did lots of chores around the house. It's important to note too that I would have done these things on a regular spending month too. Sure there's things that I wouldn't have gotten if it weren't for the holiday but it would also not be a time where I had to give of myself either. Every month has it's reasons for why money goes in and out. What I've really learned by doing this, whatever month, is that it's always going to be difficult. There's always an acceptable exception that comes up. So be smart about what you buy, don't waste what you have and remember that sometimes it's ok if you buy things that you don't NEED as long as you still use it.
So what do I have in my 'pocket' now? I won't go into specifics about my gifts for the most part but this is the list of spendable/transferable items from the month:
- $25 Gap gift card
- $25 Lowe's gift card
- $25 Home Depot gift card
- Approx $13 in Home Depot store credit
- $25 BP gift card
- $25 United Airlines Credit
- Free United flight upgrade
- $5 movie gift card
- 2 movie passes
The rest of the day was watching hulu and Netflix. I had a hard time coming up with something to do for lunch. I had strong cravings for pizza but I knew there had to be something good in the house. After much fridge digging I found some linguica. It was a little freezer burned but it was still delicious! For dinner Melissa invited me to a friends house where we ate venison stew and I brought some Jalapeno Jam. Since Sarah couldn't make it to dinner she came over to play wii afterward. We played some new games and then Mario Kart online with Anna and Todd to ring in the new year. All in all a relatively calm day to end up the year. I'm very excited by all that I've accomplished this month. Well over $250 acquired 'spendables' covering all the gifts I could ever hope to give out. An amazing contrast to last month's $1600 in spending and even better than last November's income. This year ought to be fun. I definitely think I started it off right and look forward to a new year of new challenges. I hope you enjoyed following along with me!
InventoryAcquired: $85, 2 movie tickets, $5 movie gift card, United credit(s), Christmas cards
Consumed: .88, thank you cards, linguica, chips, stew, jalapeno jam, present
Daily cash values: