First things first: Guilty as charged.
In December, we followed a well-controlled budget for buying gifts for family and friends. I didn’t deviate (much) and we emerged from that month with a credit card bill that was similar to other months. We felt good about ourselves.
By contrast, in January we’ve gone a little nuts! Following the holidays, we had a some gift money to spend on ourselves and we spent that and then some. Our “seed money” from relatives grew into several major purchases.
While we get a tiny little high five for getting a good deal on a used HDTV via Craig’s List, the TV spawned several related and unrelated splurges:
- HD Tivo and rabbit ear antenna (because our direcTV doesn’t work with this new thing)
- New camera (because “wah wah,” I cry, “that TV is just for you, I don’t care what we watch”)
- Fancy shampoo and conditioner (probably allowable expense, but getting the frou frou stuff feels like something I should cut out)
- New Joe’s Jeans (one or two pairs of seriously expensive jeans depending on how you count it, cuz new clothes are totally outlawed)
I have been doing some crazy shopping-feasting before my shopping-famine. I have that anxious feeling I sometimes get before a big trip where I want to make sure I pack everything I could possibly need for the week even though I know they sell necessities like baby food and diapers in Ohio. It seems like my need to Be Prepared for my shopping freeze is starting to defeat the purpose.