I had two successful no-spend days this week. By “successful” I don’t just mean that I managed to do them. I mean that I did them without simply delaying purchases. These were just days where I didn’t have any expenses.
Unfortunately, this comes on the tails of a short financial week. Thanks to some Black Friday shopping (and ordering a pricey but delicious pizza), I had to end the “week” of spending a full two days early.
I’m hoping to make up for that by making this current week last an extra long time. This means being careful about any unnecessary expenses. Including avoiding the alluring white pizza from a local chain. Damn you, Barro’s, and your siren song of deliciousness!
So what did I get on Black Friday?
I did find the $150 replacement TV for the bedroom. I had already snagged the $70 comforter set ($75 after taxes, but who’s counting? Oh, me!). Then my other super exciting buys were… toilet paper and sheets.
The sheets were from Target, and I got a good price of just over $23 for a nice-looking, moisture-wicking set. I needed a new set for the new guest bed. Yep, there’s a new guest bed. It’s something I’ve been meaning to do for about three years, but I never got around to it. It was time.
The problem is that the new bed is a full rather than a queen, and we had no sheets of that size. (For reasons too long to get into now, the queen sheets weren’t an option.) We don’t have guests that often — or for more than a week usually — so one set should suffice.
As for the toilet paper… Well, I’m an avid stockpiler of the stuff, and the supply had dwindled down to two packages. Meanwhile, Walgreens was having its 30% off sale. So I loaded up on two orders of 6 packages each (the maximum I could order in a single purchase). I rounded out the purchases with really sexy buys like sunscreen, shaving cream and Easy Off.
Oh but I am forgetting an actual sexy buy: bras. I decided it’s time to have something other than the utilitarian ones I use now. So I hit Victoria’s Secret’s Black Friday sale when all bras were 40% off.
Now, I wanted the bras, but I didn’t want to deal with the throngs of people. So I ordered online. And hoo boy did I order!
I bought 10 bras total — because I can always return the ones I don’t like. It also meant that I got to use the $50 off $150+ coupon they were offering, bringing the average cost down to $23 each.
They actually arrived yesterday, and all but two are going back. On the one hand, I’m thrilled that I ended up liking two of the cheaper ones (just under $20 each). But I’m a little sad that I didn’t like more of them. Still, at least it means I won’t have a huge bill next month.
And speaking of big bills… This month’s credit card bill is a nightmare. Of note on the bill was:
- $210 for eye topography for my now-delayed cataract surgery
- $163 for the TV
- $634 for Medicare (including three months of Part B premiums)
- $249 for an electrician (some plugs died in the guest house)
- $380 at Home Depot for a project I’ll discuss next week
- $504 related to the endeavor
- $132 at JCPenney for 6 thermal-blocking curtains (and 3 decent-sized curtain rods to support them) for the guest house
- $532 for the new guest bed
- $319 for our yearly termite protection plan
- $110 for water/sewer/garbage (I missed last month’s, causing a higher bill this month)
All of that, plus several smaller expenses that added up quickly, meant a bill of just over $3,750. Problem: I don’t have $3,750 left over after my expenses next month.
Normally, I’d just take the money out of savings (while cursing a little), but the funds are currently tied up with the Ally bonus. I need to keep them in there until 1/15/18.
Luckily, Mom is willing to float me a short-term loan for the amount that I need. She knows I’m good for it, of course, but I still feel weird about having to borrow money.
The good news is that everything but the TV came out of (or in the case of the bras will come out of) everyday funds.
In the past, most of it would have had to go on the card, but spending has been way down lately. So things that used to get paid at the end of the month are now being dealt with as they come. (Or a few days after they come, since we put everything on the card and make weekly payments.)
So at least one thing is looking up. That, and I’m utterly in love with my new comforter set.
How is your budget going? Did you fit Black Friday shopping into your normal spending?