It's been nearly six months since my money saving adventures began in mid-July. If you've been following this blog for a while, though, you know that my enthusiasm for deal hunting and coupon clipping has been dwindling for some time now.
When I first began this "project," deal seeking was a bit of a rush. My brain would number crunch and scenario build, mapping out ways to get the most product for the least amount of money. When I set out to money save, I told myself that I would not buy things I did not need or would not use. As I accumulated "stuff" and built a modest supply of things like toothpaste and contact solution, there came a point when I simply didn't need to buy anything more. Deal seeking began to lose its appeal.
As I told you a few weeks ago, I can't turn my back on money saving, though. Looking at our budget over the past six months, and taking out fixed expenses like rent and insurance premiums, I've calculated that I've cut our flexible spending by about 35%, while buying more products than I ever did before. So as 2012 begins, I'm setting out with a few money saving ground rules and goals, some new, some carried over from the guidelines I set for myself months ago. With these new goals in mind, I hope to regain enthusiasm for deal hunting.
2012 Money Saving Ground Rules
- I will purchase only items that I will need and use (unless it's free and can be donated).
- I will focus on healthy eating. I will not buy unhealthy grocery items just because they are free or inexpensive.
- I will not sacrifice time with my family to deal seek or blog (you may see a decline in posts - Nolan is definitely not napping like he used to).
2012 Money Saving Goals
- I will save enough money and be far enough under budget to make a contribution to our retirement account before the tax deadline in April.
- I will build a stockpile of diapers and wipes by purchasing during sales and promos (no more buying at the last minute).
- I will create and use a database/document of budget friendly recipes.
- I will keep a small stockpile (buy low) of ingredients (canned tomatoes, beans, lentils, broth, pasta, grains, etc.) I commonly use in my cooking, including the budget friendly recipes mentioned above.
- I will use my money saving skills to help out family, friends, and organizations through our church.
- I will cut our flexible spending by at least 40% (not totally necessary, but more of a challenge).
Reader Response: As you begin a new year, are there money saving goals you hope to achieve? Please share in the comments section!