Author Topic: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)  (Read 6099 times)

horsepoor

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Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« on: February 27, 2014, 08:39:14 AM »
Someone asked on the February thread if there was going to be a March challenge, so here it is.  I'd throw the gauntlet, but I don't want to go out and buy one.

Outside of consumables, there are a few things I'm likely to buy in March:

A horse blanket
Possible a saddle, still scouring Ebay for the right deal
Landscaping supplies (topsoil, rock, maybe plants)

AlanStache

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2014, 08:56:27 AM »
Ok I will say it, "you are proposing a 'no buy month' but are going to buy rocks?"  I get landscaping can add value to a property but the juxtaposition is to much.

horsepoor

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2014, 08:58:35 AM »
Landscaping gravel/mulch.  Not like rocks we could go out and pick up somewhere.  Mustachian because they will reduce water use over the long-haul (we are xeriscaping), and don't need to be freshened up each year like organic mulch.

shusherstache

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2014, 12:01:42 PM »
Any chance you could pick some up on Craigslist instead? People in my area love shovel-and-takers - saves lots of time for them and money for you.

Elaine

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2014, 12:05:41 PM »
I'm in. We had a rough month of tuition bills so I could use the total shopping diet.

My only exceptions will be groceries!

horsepoor

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2014, 12:49:32 PM »
Any chance you could pick some up on Craigslist instead? People in my area love shovel-and-takers - saves lots of time for them and money for you.

I can keep an eye out, but it's not likely that we'll find the volume we need.  Since I can haul 1 yard at a time in my pickup, it's nice to be able to purchase all matching, weed-free gravel and spread it one load at a time.  Not the place I want to try to save $200 when trying to up the curb appeal.  We already have one of the uglier houses in a nicer neighborhood.

MinimalistMoustache

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2014, 08:21:27 PM »
Thanks for getting this going HP! I am definitely ready to put away the wallet for a bit. Only planning on food purchases and (perhaps) gas. Then again, I may keep walking and hop the bus :-)

horsepoor

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2014, 07:54:24 PM »
Drat, screwed up the first day, and it had nothing to do with buying rocks.

Went to order the horse blanket, which was cheaper than expected, and added on a replacement battery for my cordless horse clippers since it put me over the threshold for free shipping.  Total spend only a couple bucks over what I'd planned to spend for the blanket, but still an unnecessary purchase and hard to call it a consumable since the old battery is about 10 years old and still works.

Today is over and I've got 29 days to go.  I will commit to getting the fence built with the materials I bought in February before I buy any rocks, so there's a good chance they won't be purchased until April.

Melody

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2014, 07:06:36 AM »
I'll make a modified challenge for myself - because I'm already doing no clothes shopping 2014 buying "stuff" isn't really a problem for me but going out is...As such I propose a no overpriced drinks month. I'm allowed to drink booze already in the house (some vodka) and buy 1x carton of basic beer ($30), but drinking at pubs and restaurants is out.

That being said I will also join you in not buying stuff and propose to delay the planned purchasing car seat covers and a replacement ipod  as well as anything else "material" this month. If I end up going to the dentist this month (I am pretty sure I am due to go back again, and it's paid for by my health insurance) I will be getting a custom sports mouthguard (if I get it done at the same time as my check up the cost is minimal and will be largely reimbursed by my health insurer), but that's it. Out of pocket is likely to be similar to the cost of replacing my fancy off the shelf one and for saftey's sake it will need to be done soon.

TheRedHead

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2014, 03:28:14 PM »
I'm in - with an unexpected dog surgery to pay for out of the monthly budget we could use this challenge this month. I'd love to not dip into savings at all this month for anything.

I can't think of anything outside of consumables that we need to buy. It's just keeping those consumables to a reasonable level.

EK

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2014, 05:02:45 PM »
I'm in!

Excluded will be the usual consumables.  As well as some supplies I need to get my house to stop letting in all the cold air and driving up my heating bill.

I'm going to also try to go the month without eating out except for one weekend that I will be out of town.

MinimalistMoustache

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2014, 07:34:30 PM »
Only because I consider coffee as one my basic food groups did my treasured French Press carafe decide to fall over and shatter ;-0   After I recovered, my next thought was this challenge - LOL! Next, rigging the coffee mug with a filter held by a rubber band and doing a very, very s-l-o-w pour -- a sort of "drip" brew.

It worked! I'm good to go for at least the next 28 days.
:-)

Melody

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2014, 04:58:29 PM »
Doing good so far :)
I've already got my next three weekends planned and they all don't involve the pub :) I did get roped into a dinner out tonight, my offers to cook for us were dismissed, but I won't be drinking (as is usual for a Monday).

horsepoor

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2014, 09:59:57 PM »
Also still doing well except for the little hiccup I posted about earlier.  I made pretty good progress on the fence today though so I might be in the market for rocks before April.  I'm even putting off buying the new Beck album, which, in a past life, I would have purchased immediately upon learning of its existence.

EK

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2014, 06:13:26 AM »
I'm still on track!  The only thing I've bought this month was weather stripping to seal up some air leaks around the doors and windows of the house.  Spent about $30 and I'm hoping it will soon save me $30 in heating and cooling costs.

We're unexpectedly hosting some out of town guests for a few days this week, but I've decided that I'm going to plan some really good dinners at home because I'm trying not to go out to eat this week and our guests might be wanting to.  But if I already have yummy meals planned then they will be forced to accept eating in so they won't hurt the feelings of their host ;)

4alpacas

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #15 on: March 11, 2014, 11:59:28 AM »
I'm out.  I caved and bought lotion.  My skin was too dry...and I can't use olive oil on my face (but I have been using it on my body).

horsepoor

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #16 on: March 11, 2014, 08:57:12 PM »
Hmm, I think lotion qualifies as a consumable, and if you're out, I don't see buying more as a problem, unless you bought a diamond-encrusted dispenser for said lotion.  Plus, you can keep on going even if you make a slip that you feel wasn't within your rules for yourself.  20 days left in March!

Melody

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #17 on: March 12, 2014, 02:45:14 AM »
Urgh, I had to cave and buy shoes.
I haven't worn my suit since last winter, but I had a very important presentation that warranted wearing the suit... shoes that went with the suit had already been thrown away as they were too broken to be repaired. (I'm not a crazy "shoe person" I only had two pairs of work shoes and both were too casual/wrong colour to wear with the suit).
Other than that going strong :)

windawake

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #18 on: March 12, 2014, 01:02:27 PM »
Hey I just realized I've pretty much done this already this month without even trying! I bought some things at the pet store (treats, chews, and toys; all of which my dog consumes in one way or another) and a light bulb for one of my headlights that went out ($11, plus free installation from Dad).

I can't say I'm going to completely jump on board since I've been putting off some purchases I really should make (salt and pepper shakers since old ones got rusted and we now use a jar for salt, also the sole is coming off of my one pair of work appropriate shoes). But this is definitely on my mind, I was hoping to make it a very low consumption month!

4alpacas

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #19 on: March 12, 2014, 01:24:42 PM »
Hey I just realized I've pretty much done this already this month without even trying! I bought some things at the pet store (treats, chews, and toys; all of which my dog consumes in one way or another) and a light bulb for one of my headlights that went out ($11, plus free installation from Dad).

I can't say I'm going to completely jump on board since I've been putting off some purchases I really should make (salt and pepper shakers since old ones got rusted and we now use a jar for salt, also the sole is coming off of my one pair of work appropriate shoes). But this is definitely on my mind, I was hoping to make it a very low consumption month!

Nice!

golfer44

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #20 on: March 12, 2014, 01:32:05 PM »
I have nothing to add, but horses sound expensive.

horsepoor

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #21 on: March 12, 2014, 09:28:37 PM »
I have nothing to add, but horses sound expensive.

Cheaper than kids/therapy/hard drugs.

Maybe.





Windawake, that jar is just a badass salt pig.

Badass shaker = jar with holes poked through the lid with a nail.  I think that was our salt shaker for years when I was a kid.  With an ancient Saltine cracker in there to prevent it from clumping.

horsepoor

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #22 on: March 23, 2014, 09:17:36 AM »
I am really sucking at this.  The fence project actually came together really quickly, so then it was on to the landscaping.  However, I'm still DIY'ing all the landscaping since the people I've called for estimates have all been flakes.  So in the last few days, I've purchased about $200 worth of rock mulch, and will be getting cobbles delivered for another $150ish.  It's looking like this landscaping project will end up clocking in around $1,000 and I'd estimate that it will not only pay for itself on the water bill within a few years, but will also add at least $5K to our property value, reduce maintenance time, and just plain be nice to come home to.

However, I have not bought any *stuff* this month, such as books, clothing, house stuff/whatever.

MinimalistMoustache

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #23 on: March 23, 2014, 05:16:22 PM »
If I can continue through next week, this challenge has been succeeding! Truth: I am eager for April to purchase a replacement beaker for my coffee press --- which conveniently broke down first day of this challenge. ;-(  Then again, I may give up coffee for April :-)

My groceries were over budget by about $23, but all in all this is turning out to provide me some good insight on where I "usually" throw my money.

Melody

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #24 on: March 23, 2014, 05:22:22 PM »
Urgh, I was travelling for work and bought a cider at the airport - surprisingly this is something I never do (not able to expense claim it and drinking while travelling tends to just make jetlag worse) but I was pretty exhausted thanks to the timezones and just wanted to chill, bought it and went "ohoh... challenge!" On the upside I resisted going to the pub with friends yesterday and got on with studying, so it was a win win choice. I'd normally spend at least $100-$200/month on drinks going out (FYI: beer =$10 here in Perth) so I'm still pretty stoked about this. I think I might extend this challenge out til 30 April :)

EK

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Re: Challenge: Miserly March (don't buy anything)
« Reply #25 on: March 23, 2014, 05:43:46 PM »
Succeeded on the not going out to eat, but not quite on the not buying anything.

I wound up buying yarn to finish an old knitting project I found when I was sorting through some old junk.