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Economic choices: How should I spend my money?

June 24th, 2014 at 07:01 am


Here is the first time I asked myself the question "How would you like to spend your money?" It is a very interesting question, especially when one has $20 for "frivolity". (New game rules: DH and I each get $20 every pay period for whatever we want: lotto ticket, bottle of premium beer, treating the kids to $.49 cones at McD's, etc).

My best friend had surgery last Thursday to repair a labral tear (?) in her hip. I've been part-time Clara Barton/Florence Nightingale, popping over to help out randomly. Her live in caretaker came into town to help and is leaving today. I was invited to join them for breakfast at Egg Harbor. Been in constant phone and FB contact with bff, listening to her complain about quality (or lack of) care other friend is giving.

Do I spend my $20 on a breakfast out (at a restaurant I like) with marginal company (love bff, not so sure about her other friend). Or do I spend the $20 on the shower curtain I found and fell in love with at Target (which cost $24.99, but I have a Red Debit to save 5% and random change in the piggy bank).

So I skipped breakfast and will be heading over to Target for my shower curtain. The kids' main bath is in need of an overhaul. We hope to do this in August. Biggest expenses will be towels, paint and primer. But I think I am happiest using my funds for the re-do.

13 Responses to “Economic choices: How should I spend my money?”

  1. snafu Says:

    Disappointed in your spending choice as I see new shower curtain for DKs bathrm as a home maintenance expense . I see something you personally consume [hair cut, lipstick, manicure, etc.] more within the parameter especially if this is a new category to get used to. Please don't take this the wrong way but a 10 y/o commonly gets a similar amount for their allowance.

  2. laura Says:


    Yeah, I know that my funds probably could have been cross-referenced budget-line wise. I am a relatively low maintenance kind of gal (color my own hair, do my own nails, most clothes come from Goodwill, etc). I struggled with spending my money on an experience that I knew I probably wouldn't really enjoy vs. something tangible to spruce up the home. Honestly, in our new money mode, there isn't a lot of funding for things like home upgrades. And the amount is nominal mostly to do away with small debit card purchases that drive me nuts (the $2.14 coffee at DH's work, etc). And I take no offense at pointing out the amount is commensurate with a youngster. It is just all that we can afford right now. Smile

  3. CB in the City Says:

    I hear you. I consider sprucing up the house with things I love a happy indulgence as well!

  4. snafu Says:

    ok, you hit a sensitive topic for me... hair colour product, manicure stuff, anything for your personal use. There are terrific buys at GW, I'm not a store snob, love renew, re-purpose, recycle creativity. I was trying to link the two themes of spending small sums on you, just you, not ice cream for kiddos, or whatever...

  5. laura Says:


    Oh, I don't feel deprived by any stretch, and like I said, I am pretty low maintenance. We all are as a whole. I just date the dumb little piddly charges of under $4 or so. I do pick up things that I want during larger shopping trips to Target, etc. My spending isn't limited to the $20. Smile It's all good! And I did spend $47.50 from the Extraneous fund for the bedding found on Craigslist. I couldn't be happier. Color and quality is perfect. Brand new, never opened, still in original box shipped. Our Extraneous fund is getting smaller, too. Definitely embracing the challenge of making every buck count. Not exactly fun, but asking the "What should I spend my $ on?" does make it a conscious choice.

  6. BuckyBadger Says:

    I'm with snafu. I was also a little sad that your "fun money" was earmarked for things like buying ice cream for the kids, or a shower curtain for their bathroom. If it's intended to do away with small debit card purchases, than that's fine, but if it's really intended for a splurge, then I think you should use it for that!

    If you feel like it's not enough to do anything substantial, what about saving it toward a more expensive tangible goal? Like the luggage that you wanted in a previous post. Not everything you spend money on has to be "worthwhile" if it's money outside the necessities budget - sometimes it's MEANT to be frittered away on something that you just *want.*

    If we're too strict with ourselves sometimes you just burst and do something really damaging. Better to just let off a little steam every once in a while ;-)

  7. My English Castle Says:

    Ha, these comments are making me laugh. I say if the shower curtain makes you happier, go for it. Not a need? Charge half to the fun money and half to the house? I think we all (well, most of us!) struggle with spending guilt sometimes, and often our comments, like snafu said, are from our own place.

    But my question is, did you really get out of Target just spending on the shower curtain? That would be hard for me! I need to go there tonight after my class for a price adjustment, and I'm almost hesitating to go because target has a way of sucking money from me.

  8. laura Says:


    @ MEC, I am laughing right along with you! I did actually spend cash for the shower curtain, skipped using the debit card for my purchase. And it was the only item. Cash is king when it comes to shopping with a purpose. Smile

  9. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    Considering the fact I am struggling to buy a vacuum cleaner. And I do all the vacuuming in the house and I am using found money instead of pulling from our budget. I get that splurging for the curtain is exactly what I would do too. Although my want is $500 instead of $20. Sigh

  10. rob62521 Says:

    After reading the above comments, I still agree...I would have bought the shower curtain. Sometimes spending money just because it seems right, and then kicking yourself afterwards, which is what I bet you would have done if you had eaten out...I get it.

  11. MonkeyMama Says:

    I would have made the same choice. Buying stuff/spending money just isn't in general what floats my boat. Buying something to beautify the home and that will make me happy for a long time (like a pretty shower curtain) is great though. Or buying the kids an unexpected treat - stuff like that is priceless. I think it just speaks to different places in life or different priorities than others. I do have a similar allowance and regularly make the same kind of choices. I certainly have no complaints. Life is good!!

  12. littlegopher Says:

    Another "me too" in buying the shower curtain (and the other things you and others mention!) We may be quirky to some, but we know what we like...Enjoy!!

  13. Kiki Says:

    I think you made a great choice. Itnis something you can see and feel and if it makes you happy, wel that's all that matters! Who cares which "account" it comes from?

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