i hate dave ramsey.

6 07 2010

which i’m pretty sure qualifies me for first class tickets to financial hell… but i don’t care. i find him intensely irritating, and also that his financial advice is in many ways oversimplified and somewhat patronizing. first and foremost:

“live like no one else so that you can live like no one else.”

i get that it makes sense to live leanly in the now so that you can have a better debt free life later on… but he makes it seem like you’re going to be able to winter in morocco or send your kids to boarding school if you can just pay off your debt. yes, i will be able to afford more once my bills are paid, but not that much more. doesn’t good ole dave realize that most people don’t make that much money?  a debt free life is absolutely better, but it isn’t necessarily the path to the upper middle classhood that seems so enticing. sorry dave, some people can only tighten their belts so much before things start to get RIDICULOUS.  i recently read a “we did it” account where the person was so excited to be out of debt because now she could feed her child hot dogs ON BUNS (just like on tv!) instead of naked hot dogs. um… lady, if you’re feeding your toddler on a steady diet of hot dogs in order to save cash- you’ve got some bigger problems.

I also have a really hard time with the overt religious overtones. basically, i don’t give a shit how much the snowball method could change my life, if all of your converts are praising the lord in tandem with praising you. it’s alienating for those of us who don’t put the “kingdom first”. basically, as soon as somebody drops the J-bomb, i’m outta there. (sorry jesus, nothing personal!).

but then there were puppies. yes, puppies (see adorableness above). the boyfriend and i have decided to invite a dog into the relationship, and are realizing that it’s gonna be stupid expensive. shots! crates! puppy playgroups! fancy kibble! and a bunch more stuff we don’t even know about yet. plus, the cost of the dog itself. but we don’t care because hello- PUPPIES!! (are you looking at these guys?). but, we have to care because it’s money. thus, i’ve decided to put my irritation aside (although i’ll still be trying to sidestep the jesusy bits), and give the ole dave ramsey patented rice and beans financial diet a try in attempt to save some extra cash this month for the impending puppiness. here are the rules:

1. $80 will be withdrawn on each sunday morning. $30 will be for groceries, $50 will be for spending money/incidentals during the week.

2. all cash remaining at the end of the week will be placed into a repository (TBD) to be evaluated at the conclusion of the month.

3. bills will be paid as usual, but the debit card will only be carried on sundays at the time of the withdrawal.

4. a several times weekly journal will chronicle my financial misadventures trying to live low on the hog.

maybe this doesn’t seem crazy or “beans & rice” level at all, but being a girl that goes out to eat at least half of her meals per week (and has been known to drop upwards of $60 on a single meal), and spends at least $30 a week on flea market bargains and target endcaps… it’s a sacrifice- i promise. will i be able to keep up my current lifestyle under the financial tyranny of dave ramsey? probably not, but you can enjoy watching me struggle! it’s time for me to remember how it really is to be broke. how little could you live on?





spending too little on too much.

14 06 2010

it was a spendy-ass sunday. took a little jaunt back to my hometown of augusta for brunch at the senator inn (a childhood fav that still holds up!), and a little light antiquing that turned into an entire day of shopping the town inside out. i got some pretty good deals that seemed necessary at the time… but seeing it all lined up at the end of the day (and added up), i start to wonder how much of my bargain shopping is really a bargain. i’m paying less for everything, but i’m buying more than ever.

shaw’s: 4 big G cereals @ $12.86 with $6 off when you buy 4 plus $4.40 worth of coupons ($.55/1 doubled from coupons.com) final cost= $2.46 for 4 boxes.

target: the liberty of london collection is on super sale at the augusta target and i snagged an adorable nightie for $8.98. there’s also a ton of zac posen stuff, but it’s not marked down enough for me to bother. give it another few weeks… i might have to go back to augusta and snag me a cocktail dress. i also found a mysteriously unblemished pair of striped espadrilles for $4.26 marked “AS IS”. their identical counterparts were just feet away in the full retail section for $16.99… maybe they’re going to explode in low speed collisions? i’ll keep you apprised if any defects should arise. lastly, i found a few boxes of puffs tissues with vicks vapo-rub in them (which i love but haven’t been able to find ANYWHERE- discontinued?) for $1.38 a box, and sacrificed 2 of my $.50/1 vocalpoint coupons. target total= an eerie $15.00 even.

big lots: to my credit, i did put back one movie and a $6 box of diet granola bars. but a $3 copy of funny face?! i have a list of movies on my iphone that i’m looking to buy. the problem being, that my price point for DVD buying is $5 of less, usually less. today i encountered 3 of those titles in the $3 bin. is there really anything else at big lots that’s even worth looking at? funny face, art school confidential, & confetti= $9.00.

goodwill: i used to own and love this jacket in another size that i am not officially too fat to wear. lo and behold, here it is at goodwill in brunswick for $4.99! oh wait, is that a yellow barb? make that $2.49!

cvs: i had $14 worth of extrabucks expiring tomorrow, and this evening was my only chance to cash in.  with the gillette proglide razors already sold out, i had to improvise a bit and use a few more extrabucks than i otherwise would have preferred. i ended up with a bunch or random crap (most of which will get donated), but it felt like a good haul considering the circumstances:

2 john frieda root awakening shampoos @$5 each with $3 ECB back when you buy $10 + $5/2 coupon= $2
2 right guard total defense deodorants $4.49/ea. on BOGO + $3/2 coupon from coupons.com= $1.50
1 covergirl wetslicks amaze-mint @ $4.99 with $3 ECB back, and $1/1 coupon= $.99
1 colgate proclinical toothpaste @ $3.99 with $2 back in ECB, and a $1/1 coupon= $.99
2 gillette bodywash @ $8 with $8 back in ECB and a $4/2 coupon= +$4 ECBs (the flier said limit 1, but it turned out to be limit 2!)
total OOP= $17.47 (paid $17 in ECBs + .$.47 in cash plus tax), received $16 ECBs

total spent this weekend (for all above pictured goods, not actually counting meals, groceries for the week, and a ridiculous failed dinner party that will never speak of again)= $29.42 of stuff that i didn’t actually need. on one hand, i could have spent a whole lot more on a multi-store shopping binge, and gotten a whole lot less. on the other hand, is spending $30 on anything that i don’t need really a bargain? it might be time to put the debit card away for a while and think about what i’ve done.