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I run into acquaintances all the time at Walmart or other stores and I can tell right away whether or not they read my blog. How?
Those that have start making excuses for what they feel I would view as a “non-thrifty” purchase that is sitting in their cart. Truth is, they don’t have to explain to me that they only bought the Fruit Loops because it was Junior’s birthday and they got it on sale and are using a coupon and plan to upload the receipt to Receipt Hog the minute they get home.
Because I truly don’t care if they buy Fruit Loops. If it fits in their budget, they are reaching their financial goals at the rate they desire, and their daily bowl of fruit loops brings them daily joy then let them have fruit loops and let me have my bar of organic mint dark chocolate.
Gasp…Victoria…organic mint dark chocolate! That is much too expensive. Eh. Whatever. I have the cash to pay for it, I am taking active steps to reach my financial goals, and to me a bar of expensive chocolate is 100% worth every penny I pay for it.
Do you see the common denominators in the above scenarios?
1. Your splurge fits in your cash only budget.
2. Your splurge doesn’t prevent you from reaching your financial goals at the rate you desire.
3. Your splurge brings you joy either short term or long term (although for these examples both offer short term joy)
Those are the three elements of a good thrifty splurge. What the splurge items are in each family are unique to that family. Some thrifty families might splurge on just short term splurges like favorite foods, others might splurge only on long term items like vacations, others–like our thrifty family–might do a mix of both.
5 Things Our Thrifty Family Splurges On
1. A backyard that is probably more fun than most city parks (for the kids)
My husband loves making the backyard a place where our kids and their friends want to hang out–no matter what their age. A few years back we gave it a teen makeover and added an above ground pool, a trampoline, a fire pit, and most recently an outdoor movie screening area.
These are not inexpensive items but we invest in them because seeing our children building friendships and memories right in their own backyard means a lot to us.
2. Good Running Shoes (for me)
I spend right around $500 a year in good, high quality,running and walking shoes. Yep! you read that right half a grand on just running shoes each and every year –and honestly that is a conservative number; it is probably more.
For me running is my stress relief, my creative juice, my friendship building time, and truly my go to source for energy to refuel my tanks.
That $500 is worth every single penny.
3. eBooks that are not free (for him)
Although I rarely buy a book beyond one found for a $1 at a yard sale, my husband buys several a month in Kindle format. The books he likes don’t ever show up on Free Kindle listings and often our library is slow to obtain them, so he gets his bookworm fix using my point earned Amazon gift cards from places like Swagbucks and InstGC to buy a few new books each month.
Reading is to him what running is to me so I think this splurge is worth every penny.
4. Store bought natural cleaners
At one time I did make my own cleaners and they really are super inexpensive and work well, but I just couldn’t convert my husband over to them. My husband actually likes to clean so I don’t want to do anything that would stop him from doing it. So we compromised on all natural cleaners.
I also gave up making my own laundry soap and started buying a natural brand.
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5. Paper Towels
It might seem strange, but to me this is the hardest splurge to admit to publicly because I am afraid I will get blacklisted from thrifty blogging. I notice that big name thrifty bloggers pretty much all see paper towels as a pure waste of money, which might be true in their homes but isn’t in ours.
If you read about our families number 4 splurge you would see that I said my husband likes to clean, however he is particular about what he will and won’t use to clean. If I stopped buying paper towels his particular self would stop cleaning areas of the home where he uses paper towel to clean and then…well…I would have to clean and that would mean less time blogging, which would decrease my income potential, so to me paper towels are less expensive than hours of work missed.
Other Articles Where Thrifty Bloggers Admit To Their Splurges
This article has been brewing in my mind for quite some time thanks to the inspiration of other bloggers:
Crystal Paine’s 6 Thing Our Family Has Chosen To Splurge On
Andrea Dekker’s How I Decide When To Save Or Splurge
For a list of 52 different websites, apps, and stores our thrifty family uses to help us keep our expenses low, click here to visit our Thrifty Tools Resource Page.