stripping.

19 04 2010

so i read this really excellent article the other day about how to be a better photographer, which is weird because i don’t have any particular aspiration to be a photographer. yeah, i know that my blurry and poorly lit iphone photos totally blow, and i’m at peace with that. but what was great about the article was that it actually wasn’t about photography at all. it was about simplifying. the basic message being that all the high-tech gear in the world won’t make you a better photographer. her advice was to put everything away except your most basic camera, and just take as many pictures as you possibly can. strip away the distractions and reconnect with your craft.

well, i think it’s finally time for me to reconnect with my financial crap, i mean craft. lately i’ve been doing nothing. actually wait, i’ve been spending like a crazy person (i went to swap out a pair of shoes in the wrong size this weekend and accidentally ended up with yet another new pair. that’s 5 in the last 2 weeks for those of you who haven’t been paying attention), have more than an entire month of unclipped coupons,  skipped the last two baking days, and haven’t balanced my checkbook since 2009. SERIOUSLY NOT GOOD.

but before that, i was attempting to pull off every deal in town much to the detriment of both my wallet and my cabinet space.  i got burnt out and gave up. i got spring fever and i wanted new toys. at some point, i lost sight of the reason why i started this whole blog situation in the first place.

a quick assessment of the last 2 weeks of my checking account- i’ve spent $342.40 on eating and drinking out (oops), and i’m $413 in the hole for next month.  shit. shit. shit.

time to do the financial strip tease:

forget the pointless deals and baking days and hours spent on intricate schemes resulting in a freezer full of hotpockets (still fat FYI). remember the debt, the nest egg, and the new roof. it’s time to get back down to basics. i spent my hungover sweatpants sunday clipping and sorting my long neglected coupon stash (shamefully, many had already expired), and formulating an actual grocery list.  i decided to lay off hot pursuit of the uberdeal, and do something i haven’t done in a long time- just buy what i need. i planned five simple dinners, and some work food designed to prevent me from heading off to the coffee by design every day (after the last few weeks, my mayorship should be pretty much sealed). i used the coupons that i had, and even found an abandoned $10/$100 catalina at the register. $69 even (heh) split with the boyfriend, is only $4.50 over my weekly $30 budget, with no immediate reason to freak out and buy the whole world.

deep breath. keep going.

some pretty sweet shaw’s deals that i noticed while i was there:

pretty much all of the near east couscous & rice pilaf is $.99 right now.

tribe hummus is $1.99, and there’s (at least in falmouth) a $1/1 coupon blinker hanging out right there. i got 3 because apparently hummus lasts until july, and HELLO, $.99 hummus.

most of the kashi cereal is on sale for $2.49 this week, and if you still have any of the $1.50/1 from the vocalpoint healthy heart bonanza, $.99 fancy-pants cereal could be in your future.

mojo bars are on sale @ $.99 each, and there’s a recent mambo sprouts $1/3 coupon floating around there making them $.66 each. also, they’re fucking delicious.

there’s a tearpad (again, in falmouth) for free tomatoes when you buy 2 fresh express salad blends.

p.s. don’t look at that bag of doritos.

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6 responses

19 04 2010
blackgirlinmaine

Sigh…I need to get back on track as well. In the fall and early part of winter, I was doing good managing my money, clipping coupons and all that basic thrifty stuff. But in December, we had a lot of expenses, I got a huge bonus, we bought a new car and then I just fell off the wagon. I can’t even remember the last time I clipped coupons. Your post just inspired me to look at the Shaw’s sales paper and maybe think about making an actual shopping list.

I am like an addict when it comes to money, even when I am in frugal mode I have to pay attention because if it involves spending its like I get a high from it..which is probably why I have a zillion boxes of those pretzel crackers in the cabinet despite the fact I barely eat them.

Hopefully reading about your struggles will inspire me to get off my ass since I have multiple trips coming up and unless I want to be in my hometown broke, I need to clamp down now.

PS: You only have 1 bag of Doritos, you are totally good. I tend to buy multiple bags of chips when I buy them which is why I need to avoid them in the first place.

20 04 2010
bessmarvin

as it turns out, we have some pretty similar financial habits. maybe we can inspire each other to get our shit together! i have to say that making a grocery list was kind of cathartic. plus, it’s nice to come home every night knowing what’s for dinner.

19 04 2010
chris

ha! i bought 8 bags of doritos! hey they were $1 bag with coupons, and will last my husband and kids for a long time. i don’t know what shit they put in those, but they’re good ’til july. the bad part; i passed a woman in shaw’s who i sweat my ass off next to mon-sat at various torture classes at the gym with those 8 bags of doritos sticking out of my cart. why do i feel the need to say “hey, i’m hardly gonna eat any of them myself”

thank god i love dressing like a homeless person and work out of my house.

20 04 2010
bessmarvin

i LOVE that you bought 8 bags of doritos and then ran into someone from your gym. i won’t lie, i totally judge people based on what’s in their grocery carts. the reality is that i wish i was a person who could buy delicious snack food and then go home and eat it all with a clear conscience. unfortunately my hippie parents and my fat pants have riddled me with guilt and shame. nice move with the hobo disguise. i should try that one next time i’m thinking about binging on little debbie.

19 04 2010
m

I looked at nothing BUT the Doritos and CHEESEBURGER WAT. Please explain.

19 04 2010
bessmarvin

fuck. i ate the cheeseburger doritos at a party, where someone read the ingredients and PROMISED that there was no meat in them. brief googling says otherwise. *shame* i was so excited to eat something that tasted like trashy hamburgers but wasn’t. 😦

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