What we did and What we Spent

9:09 PM

One might be curious about what there is to DO on a spending freeze.

It's something Tory and I like to call, “living off the fat”. Which means that we are so surrounded by (and usually contributing to) surplus, waste, and abundance, that it’s easy to still live a luxurious life simply by living off the excess. I think I would have a hard time mentally if we tried to continuously take and not give, particularly if it burdened friends or family. But there is so much excess that I don’t see changing anytime soon, so I am impressed by others who make this a lifestyle. 

Also, we used Groupons we had already bought and allowed tipping so we ended up going out to eat a fair amount still between deal vouchers and work perks. 

We also took advantage of the Spyhouse pop-up coffee shop on the northside that happened to be giving out free latte’s and other coffee drinks Monday-Saturday mornings during the entire month! 

Clothing swap! What a great invention, and great way to purge and get a few new lovely things. It felt like thrift shopping - one of my favorite pastimes. 

The MIA hosted a preview party for designers and fashion people and I got to see the Italian fashion exhibit. it will be free to the public on the third Thursday of November, and I highly recommend it!

Instead of going out for tea, which is my default, I met Brooke for a walk in the park when she was in town and brought my homemade chai. We got to spend time outside in the leaves and sunshine. We hosted potlucks with friends and family, which is my preferred way to hang out anyways (rather than dining out).

I was in charge of an appetizer for a work halloween party at the end of the month and I brought a cantaloupe that I grew myself this summer, cut to look like smiling teeth. 

I walked a lot more in search of free parking. I often do this anyways, but the freeze helped make this a general policy of mine, where I'll build in an extra 10 or 15 mins in order to be able to park farther away in places I know are free and walk. One particularly beautiful day instead of driving downtown for a work errand, I walked the mile and a half and took the bus back. I'm pretty sure I saved time not having to wait in traffic and worry about parking. I also really enjoyed biking to work and activities… the leaves are so crunchy and pretty!

We ended up doing a lot more church-related activities. We went to our first community dinner and loved it. Went to a “no kids allowed” house party, which very appropriately was in honor of the hosts having paid of their debt and was also a riot. We went to the Porch gallery’s art opening as well. 

Here's a graph of our spending for the month of October (green) vs. September (yellow). Funny to have a list of spending during the spending freeze, but this was a very lax spending freeze with loopholes like gas purchases, and of course the bills still went out. Have I mentioned how great mint is?

The food and dining category is always where we make up the most savings-wise. That yellow line is out of control! Some of this was in preparation for stocking up for October (and November!) at Costco, but we go out to restaurants way more than what I think would be ideal. We actually broke the spending freeze twice in the last two days of October - once for a business purchase and second for flights to see my family for Christmas. Both were deals that presented themselves to us and we decided to break the freeze rather than end up paying a lot more a few days later. Overall though, the month was definitely more of a reflection of my ideal spending plan and another good experience. 

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