Confession: Planned May (and August/September) Splurges

Since the beginning of 2013, I’ve managed to pay down more than $1k a month on my debt repayment.  And while I enjoy these chunks of repayment as much as getting the corner piece of a cake with all the delicious frosting, I’ve decided something that might not go over well with my PF friends.  I’ve decided that for May and August/September, though I’m going to use 50% of that amount to pay down my debt, I’m also going to allocate the remaining half for “fun” money.

I’ll wait until people stop shaking their heads in disappointment.

I have to confess – I’m a complete pansy.  And this whole spending deprivation – I’m getting kind of burnt out.  I’m still sticking to my no shopping for clothes, shoes, and race fees – save for races, I actually don’t miss any of it.  But I am using the money in May for some justifiable needs, but also some luxury items.  I’m going to use it for contacts and possibly a new retainer (I’m Type A in wearing it every night, my grill cost me a bundle to fix so these suckers are staying straight), but also “frou-frou” skincare products, shampoo, conditioner, and some make-up.  Things I use on a daily basis and will last for quite some time, but still add up to a pretty penny.

In August/September, as well, I’m going to give myself a break since some really important birthdays are around that time.  B’s (so I might actually use July for this 50% break if we end up going on a trip), my mom’s 60th (don’t tell her I told you), my bro’s and sis-in-law’s birthdays (usually a nice dinner), my bff’s and her son’s (usually a dinner and a learning toy, respectively), and my grandma’s (usually a “date day” with her).  This might actually end up being more than 50%, if visits to B’s fam in Washington and my mom in Arizona occur, but family’s not something I will sacrifice since I barely see them enough as it is.

I’m not changing my retirement/savings/investment allocations, but I am aware that this will probably set me back until the end of 2013 from my debt elimination goal.  There is a part of me that thinks “Man, it’s only a year, suck it up, yo!”, but I am kinda vain, and my close relationships are important to me, so I’m going to budget these breaks in (and I won’t even try to justify them as non-quantifiable investments).

I was more afraid to post it than guilty of planning it, to be quite honest.  But I’m okay with it.

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34 thoughts on “Confession: Planned May (and August/September) Splurges

  1. Good plan, but consider this please: Instead of just admitting right now that you’re going to blow half of your debt repayment money on stuff or gifts, try to find a way to raise that money instead so you can continue to contribute to your repayment without a hiccup. Everyone needs a break every so often when they’ve been working so hard at chipping away their mountain of debt, but why slow down the process?

    If you are serious about your debt you would consider your alternatives. Donate blood plasma, sell some stuff from around the house, babysit somebody’s kids, housesit, get a second small part-time job for “blow money”.

    The feeling of being out of debt is way better than the feeling of the occasional splurge when you’re still in debt. Check this out if you get the chance: http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/04/18/news-flash-your-debt-is-an-emergency/

    • You’re right, JM – I think I should have put a caveat that this is “worse case scenario.” I’m currently selling stuff, baby-sitting, etc., which brings in some extra funds, but maybe I can look into additional side income. I already donate platelets for a friend, though, so not sure if I can have more needles for plasma donation. 🙂 Thanks for the suggestions!

  2. I didn’t know you wore braces as an adult lady! I did too and still wear my retainer but I’m not Type A, Maybe Type E because I’m lucky if I remember to wear it weekly. 😛
    I completely understand about the debt repayment burnout because since Jan 2013, I have paid over 1k each month as well with each month, paying a bit more than the last. April will be the first month that I pay less than the previous month because I took a budgeted shopping trip with my siblings and I had to buy new contacts. At first I felt so guilty when I realized I couldn’t beat March’s repayment number and then after a few minutes I was OK with it. Be OK with your spending/repayment choices Anna because I think you are doing great! 😀

    • Aww, thanks GMD, I knew out of everyone you would understand. I think how you processed the guilt is a lot like how I’m processing it now… I was raised Catholic, so I think it’s ingrained in me. 🙂 Yup, I wore braces in my mid-20’s – I used a health flex spending account that was pre-tax, so I was able to save a bit on them, but they were still pricey! Doesn’t the retainer hurt if you only wear them weekly? I forgot my retainer once during a weekend getaway and when I wore it, it felt as tight as having braces. It’s amazing how teeth move so quickly, but maybe it’s because I had some jacked-up teeth lol

  3. It’s been said many times over, but personal finance is personal. No one can tell you what is right or wrong, but I did just read Johnny’s comment, and I do think he had a great suggestion in trying to find a way to earn a little extra at the same time? Dog walking? Task rabbit? Something to give you a little boost? In any case, you need to follow YOUR OWN path! Guilt is a wasted emotion (I need to remind myself of that!) 🙂

    • I loved the last line and couldn’t agree more – man, those Catholic teachings get really ingrained in a person! 😉 I actually looked up Task Rabbit after reading your blog, but they don’t have it in SD yet. But you’re right, I do some little extra stuff here and there, but maybe I just need to try harder to absorb the cost. As silly as it sounds, even if it’s my own path, I still feel like I’m letting PF peeps down in the event I don’t, but I just gotta get over that, I suppose!

  4. I agree with JM about trying to pick up some spare cash, if possible. But hey, it’s your money so you do you! My eloquent words for the morning.There is nothing wrong with spending a little and treating yourself. I think some people just have trouble turning the impulse off. Sounds like you know how best to budget your money though and that’s what’s important!! 🙂 Enjoy your trips and shopping without any guilt.

    • I definitely agree with JM, as well – I do some of that (which actually helped with Mother’s Day and wedding gifts), but maybe I’m not trying hard enough. Thanks for your kindness – eloquent indeed. 🙂

  5. You have a lot of birthdays coming up all crammed in couple of months time. I know what you mean about burning out. I’m not paying down as much as you do, but this following a budget thing is rewarding and tiring at the same time. A break is a good thing to keep this going in the long run. So don’t feel guilty~^^

    • Yeah, August and September are the busiest birthday months for sure. I agree that budgeting is a double-edged sword…. I’m definitely trying to let go of the guilt! Have a great weekend 🙂

  6. I think you’ve been doing an awesome job so far and deserve a bit of a break. But I can see the point of losing a bit of momentum (its happened to me) so if you can make a bit extra to help fund the fun and keep up your debt repayment, its a win-win. I think the best thing you’ve done is anticipating this upcoming expenditures and can re-evalute your budget ahead of time.

    I tend to be more reactionary in my budgeting (which I need to work on) and don’t think ahead to months where I know I’m going to spend more money (like May, which has Mother’s Day and my hubby’s bday). I’m going to try this year to keep my debt repayment the same but take money away from eating out and entertainment to make up for extra gift spending. I’m still working a tonne of OT as well so I can save up some of that as well 🙂

    I think you’ve done the hardest part, which was admitting/confessing. Now its time to make the plan 🙂

    • I agree, that’s my biggest concern is losing momentum. I suppose I’m not really okay with building this in budget since I still get anxious about it, but you’re right, I just need to look into other ways to either earn more or re-allocate. That’s great that you’re able to have OT to help with savings! You’re such great motivation with your remaining debt balance. 🙂

  7. I’m not shaking my head with disappointment. I think it’s good that you recognize what you are doing and if you can make extra money before hand to offset some of those costs great. If you can’t well, don’t sweat it. As long as you get back on the wagon all will be good.

  8. Hey, at least you’re being upfront. Do what you gotta do, but I think you just still try to spend as little extra as possible to continue knocking out the debt. Maybe you can find a side hustle or just spend less on the luxury items with proper research? Either way, I’m still rooting for you…

    • Your last sentence is so kind, thank you, Jacob! I agree about my May plans – I don’t think I *really* need some of the items just yet, so perhaps a bit can wait until after my debt is gone. Thanks for the support 🙂

    • Hee hee, I don’t know about it being fun, but hopefully I will think so ex post facto. 🙂 Thank you for your kindness and for stopping by!

  9. Oh, Anna — we have been in a similar frame of mind. How funny! I think you’ve been doing amazingly well on your debt repayment, so putting aside some “fun” (love that this is in quotes, by the way — my “fun” these days consists of computer parts and microwave popcorn) money is not only something you SHOULDN’T feel guilty about, but also probably necessary to preserve your sanity through this process. I like the idea of trying to make extra money to cover it, but if you can’t, no feeling guilty! PS I also had adult braces and haven’t worn my retainer in at least a month. Don’t tell my orthodontist. 🙂

    • Hi Carly – I know, when I read your post I thought it was funny how it was similar to my thoughts (except I had a “carry on” motivation from yours). I’m definitely going to look for ways to make extra money to help absorb the costs, but seeing my loved ones is pretty important so I don’t want to let that go just yet. I do suppose I can cut down May expenses, though. Haha, I won’t tell him/her 😉

  10. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with allotting money (even a considerable amount) to “fun”. I’ve been very responsible with money my whole life, and still continue to be, but nothing will stop me from taking a trip with my boyfriend or visiting a place I’ve never been before because I want to experience life. It’s more important to make memories!

    • I loved your last sentence – that’s why I value trips over possessions, because I love the experiences from them. That’s great that you’re responsible with money – something I aspire to be! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  11. I saw there were online kits that you could buy to get your teeth’ print and then mail it and get a retainer. It was pretty cheap. The last time I got one I asked the dentist to leave me the mold so I could order one easily, I lose them all the time.

  12. Your spending seems pretty tame. If you had said that you were planning on buying a new Ford Expedition or a $1000 purse, I may have had some choice words for you!

    I think we have all have stuff we spend a little more on than others. Within reason, I think its OK.

    • Thanks for the kind assessment, Mr. 1500. I do have some designer likes that I… like… but within reason in my perspective, and I make sure to get great use out of them.

    • Haha, indeed… I know, with my people pleaser tendencies I get too preoccupied on what others will think or I don’t want to disappoint, even at my age. lol Thanks so much for your support and for stopping by 🙂

  13. Pingback: April results/ May plans | Are Ya Gonna Eat That?

  14. Pingback: Car Repairs, You’re Not the Boss of Me! | Are Ya Gonna Eat That?

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