Thursday, August 23, 2012

Spend Nothing Month

I was hesitant to post about this earlier, because honestly I didn't know how successful I'd be and I didn't want to embarrass myself.  Anyway, sometime in July I decided that I would try to do a "spend nothing month" in August.  I figured since it'd be my last month with a paycheque for a while, it'd be good way to start being more mindful of my purchases. 

That said, I do not consider myself a big spender.  I don't buy many new clothes for myself, my haircuts are few and far between, I'll occassionally indulge in a tea or treat when out but rarely eat meals out.  The Bean (and now Sprout) are my biggest weaknessess.

I should note that it's these "extras" which I've been trying to not spend on.  Obviously bills still need to be paid, groceries need to be bought, and the car needs to be filled up.  We also had to pull a significant amount from our savings this month to pay for the cat's medical treatment. 

I haven't been entirely successful, but I think I've done okay.  There have definitely been times when I've not spent on something that I normally would have. 

Here is where I've been unsuccessful so far:
-$10 on dinner out when we were just too tired to cook
-$10 donation for a friend's bike ride
-$4 on poutine and a drink while we were on our trip
-$2.50 on Google storage for blog photos

I also cheated a little by using some giftcards to purchase a pair of rainboots ($10) for The Bean, as well as a potty seat ($6) and some wool to make a fellow blogger who is sending some stuff for Sprout a few hats for her little girl. 

I'm hoping that even with a reduced income we'll be able to keep putting a little into savings every month and I that I'm able to finish off this month without spending anything else... and maybe more importanly not indulge too much once the month is over! 


  1. Not bad! An admirable task. I've been having to cut back a little lately, too. I rely heavily on to help me with that.

    1. I'll have to check that website out. Thanks for the suggestion!

  2. Great job! We are also trying very hard not to spend money on extras. We actually take all our spending money out of the bank when I get paid and try not to use our debit cards at all. Some months we're more successful than others... :)

  3. Awesome! I think we need to try this at our house .

  4. I've been meaning to tell you that you've inspired us! I read this when you posted it, and we've decided to do a version of it in September (so: starting Saturday!). We'd actually like to make this a regular (2-3 months out of the year) kind of thing, if it works. We're not being as strict as you, but we are lowering our allotment for groceries to $100 a week (we spend a ton on food), $60 for gas for the whole month, and $150 each for anything else we want all month (including grocery splurges like meat, cheese, wine, or snacks). I'm really excited to see how this works, and I'm especially hopeful that it will teach us to be more careful with our money. Thank you for the example!

    1. I think doing it every few months would be a good practice to get into too. I'd probably pick strategically (December would just NOT be practical) but after this month I think it would be possible to do again.

      We also spend a fortune (~$150/week) on groceries (and toiletries/household items) but I think that it makes it a lot easier to not eat out. Buying good, healthy food is also very important to us. Organic meats, eggs, milk, yogurt, many of our fruits and vegetables, etc. It's not an area that we want to cut back on too much.