Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Spring Cleaning and my No-Buy Month

I had originally thought that I would be moving in with S this month, but due to some faulty (or rather a lack of) calculations on my part it turns out that I wound up signing into a 20 month lease instead of the 18 month one I had thought I had agreed to.  Not a huge deal.  We pretty much spend most of our time together anyway, but I was looking forward to not having to clean 2 places when guests come into town or having to worry about leaving the kitties alone so much.  We've decided to make the most of our extra two unanticipated months of having a place in town in the meantime and we're working on crossing as many restaurants/bars/events that are in, north, or west of the city off of our lists as possible while we have the easy access.  I'm also taking this extra time to do some MAJOR spring cleaning.
It's really more of a purge.  I have so many random bins sitting around my apartment that I had just thrown together haphazardly during my last move and then haven't opened at all since.  That's a year and a half of not even knowing I had something or where it was.  Obviously these are not things I need.  For example, those back three bags in the picutre above?  Filled with old magazines.  They've already been read.  I used to save pages of outfits or recipes that I liked but now with the advent of Pinterest, I haven't looked at them once.  I had old VHS and cassette tapes.  I don't even have devices to play those anymore.  Etcetera.  It's all getting trashed.
I also have some random things lying around that are still in good condition but I just don't use them anymore.  And for those (hello 2 bags of paperback novels, school binders, and college apartment decorations), I am starting a sell/donate pile.  S and I plan to have a HUGE garage sale after I move in to get rid of extra furniture and doubles of kitchen/bathroom/bedroom supplies.  We don't even use 1 blender most of the time so 2 of them is definitely unnecessary.  And did you know that between the two of us we have a total of 5 crockpots.  Yeah.  So tack these 3 boxes of random things to the "sell" list.  We hope to use the money to buy new furniture that is "ours" instead of mine or his.  Like a king size bed so we don't have to keep waking up to mouthfuls of cat fur from the overly-snuggly kitties.

In the meantime, I'm also trying out a No-Buy Month.  I read this article earlier this week about spending money on experiences rather than things and it really struck a chord.   While some things do make me giddy, they don't necessarily make me happy.  But a great day out with friends or a really amazing dinner out with S, those are more meaningful.  So for at least the month of May, and maybe longer if it goes well, I am cutting myself off from buying things and am only allowed to spend money on experiences.  There are two additional upsides to this: 1) I am not accumulating anything else while I am in the process of purging.  It kind of defeats the purpose if you restock at the same rate at which you reduce.  And 2) I'm hoping to pad my savings account a bit more.  My tenants moved out of my Florida townhouse and so I'm stuck paying the mortgage in addition to my rent here in Houston for a few months.  I'm not hurting for money, it just sucks to see your balance drop that much in such a short period of time.  It's not easy, I've already been VERY tempted to buy this, one of these, and these.  But I'm being strong!!!! I'll keep everyone updated on how it goes!

(top picture from here)

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