Friday, January 3, 2014


I purchased some groceries on the way out of work today. I'm a bit under my $15 a day goal so far for the year (I know we're only 3 days in). So far so good. I should have a NO SPEND tomorrow and Sunday. That'll put me at 3 in the first week.

I am tracking my "stuff" purchases again this year (I did that in 2011 and 2010). It's a very simple procedure yet kind of difficult to explain. I think the best way to describe my definition of "stuff" is something that won't get used up. Things you buy on a regular basis: gasoline, food, toilet paper, soap; these things aren't included in a "stuff" purchase. Shoes, pants, a photograph, a toy; these are "stuff." Can someone think of a better way for me to explain this? In the past three days I have not purchased "stuff." I'm giggling now. There has to be a better way to explain this. In truth I like keeping track because I generally purchase very few new things. It's neat at the end of the year to see that I only made 57 purchases or however many. Especially when at least 15 of those things were gifts, 2 were new articles of clothing for work, and so forth. Yes, I'm strange. It's the little things that keep me going.

Average daily spending this year: $14.31

Today's lovely: There was a ferocious sunset this evening. As I was leaving work a very small portion of the sky where the sun was dipping into Lake Michigan was a strong warm solid magenta. It was almost too strong and too solid to even look real. It quickly faded into the violent grey clouds around it. They were those mean looking dark grey cotton ball storm clouds. So much intense beauty, like the most lovely dark pink rose sitting right there in the middle of all that anger. It was a wonderful moment for me because I didn't long to capture it. I didn't wish my camera were near by. Rather that moment captured me/ moved me. I was happy right then and there. I noticed the miracle of the sky right then and there. I was thankful to be alive right then and there.


  1. I like to call "stuff", "non-consumables". Consumables of course would be food/toiletries/HBA/paper goods/experiences/meals out/etc.

    Back in 2007 I joined THE COMPACT Group and went a solid year without buying non-consumables in my personal life....well, except for 1 photo album to finish up the project to get ALL the family photos organized into books and then Xmas gifts for my kids that year. (I did continue to buy products to resell for my business-my exemption- but cut way down there the end of the year I stopped buying for the business.)
    I also had a brother become critically ill and discovered the extent of his hoarding that year.

    Between those experiences, they changed my life.

    Instead of personal shopping that year I spent it releasing "stuff" from my life. That was the year I stopped going to malls(unless I had a specific need and I now find I need very little of what they sell there).

    I like your "don't purchase stuff" thing. 8-)

    1. "non-consumable" yes, that's it exactly.

      Stuff wise I think my 2010 may have been similar to your 2007. After the first time I went to Guatemala I realized that I thought I needed so much when in fact I already had far more than I could ever need. In 2010 when I tried to stop buying non-consumables I learned that it's really not that difficult to stop purchasing stuff when you just stop to think about it.

      I'm curious what's THE COMPACT group (I guess I can google it) and AWESOME that you were able to go a whole year with only one purchase (plus Christmas). That is really so cool. I rarely hear about people who try such a thing. It's admirable and inspiring.

    2. How about 'non groceries'! Best of luck for 2014 and your quest for financial freedom! :-) Ireland

    3. That might work too. Next time I'm going to purchase "stuff" I'll have to ask, "would this be considered groceries?" I think that works. Non-consumables/ non-groceries/ stuff :)


      I joined once the group hit Yahoo, about 1 yr in and there were about 100 members at that time. Now there are thousands. I am still a member of the list but rarely post and don't adhere to the strictness of it. One year of being hardcore was enough for me. Linda over at the Practical Parsimony blog was also a member back then....

  2. The description of the sunset is wow... A rose amidst anger, that's very beautiful.

    1. thanks. That's exactly what it looked like to me. There was this intense unreal beauty in a fairly small part of the sky and then just fierce fierce clouds all around it. It was my lovely moment yesterday for sure.