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Can't Stop Spending

December 15th, 2016 at 04:40 pm

I just hate December. I hate the draining cost of Christmas, the way it just dribbles, dribbles, dribbles; you never feel done. Yesterday I spent another $20 on gifts, having learned that I will be going to my niece's house for a dinner/gift-opening before Christmas. I still should get a gift card for that event. I've also spent $11 on packing tape, $5 on hot chocolate and a candy bar, $9 on kitty litter, $20 on gas and $27 on groceries. Yeah, the hot chocolate and the candy bar were not only unnecessary but I shouldn't even have them. I didn't care; I just needed the comfort.

It was bitterly cold this morning, and I was halfway afraid to drive to work. It was a grueling trip, too -- slow, crawling traffic almost the whole way. I wonder if more people drive when it's cold because it's too miserable to wait for the trains. When I got home again I filled the tank, even though it was only a little under half-full. I don't take chances in weather like this.

I got my tree up and decorated yesterday. I still have to bring up another container of Christmas decorations for the house -- I'll probably do that this weekend. Most things I don't really care about, but I do want to get my Santa collection out. I look forward to seeing those little fellows every year.

Variables spending is at 91%. For the year, it's 104%.

7 Responses to “Can't Stop Spending”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    Darn on the extra spending! I've found it helps to be very clear in what my plan is and not to feel ANY guilt about what I do or do not give to someone. Someone gave me an ornament for a tree this week. I didn't get that person anything, and I feel no need to rush out to make it even. Be strong, and stay out of the stores if you can!

  2. ThriftoRama Says:

    I feel the same way. I feel like the spending gets out of control no matter how I try to reign it in. There's always another charity drive, another party, another this or that for so and so. It never ends!

  3. patientsaver Says:

    But it's completely within your control to rein it in isn't it? You are the one telling yourself you have to get a gift card or whatever. No one is telling you that this is what you need to do. If it's gotten to the point where you "hate December," I would definitely make some changes...maybe too late for this year, but then for next year.

    I am sure your family would understand if you changed your buying habits around the holidays.

  4. CB in the City Says:

    I feel terrible if I don't reciprocate a gift. Maybe it's the shame of having been poor all my life. I also never feel like my gifts are good enough! Probably the psychotherapy would be more expensive than the gift-giving, LOL.

    I will have to make changes, though, when I no longer have extra income like I have had this year.

  5. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    Why do you have to give a gift back? If the person is giving you a gift because they WANT to, it shouldn't obligate anything more than a genuine thank you from you. If the person was giving you a gift out of obligation ... well then, you not reciprocating will give them the chance to take you off their list next time.

    Kids are a different story of course (when they're related), but really, why give adults gifts unless you *really* want to?

  6. patientsaver Says:

    I understand, but if you give yourself plenty of time to let people know next year that for various reasons, you're reining in your spending, they will still love you. Remember it's the time you spend with people, not the money you spend on people, that counts.

    I'm not sure what the definition of "poor" is. Is there some magic cut-off that makes one person poor and another one not? It really comes down to a perception more than anything, and even if you were "poor" in terms of money, were you also poor in terms of family relationships, friendship, support, love, compassion, kindness? That's the stuff that counts.

    Many of us have parents who grew up during the Depression. It left lasting impressions on both my parents. My mother hoarded things and wouldn't throw out anything she thought she might have a use for later. My dad is a pack rat too.

    I certainly remember being raised by a single parent. We got those govt rations, like the hard block cheese and I don't know what else. I remember my mother talking to us if we went through a gallon of milk too quickly; same thing with a roll of toilet paper!

    But I was conditioned by my loving grandparents to expect lots of wonderful presents at Christmas, and we continued that "tradition" long after my grandparents died. Maybe it was really a method of comforting ourselves, becus to be honest, my family was dysfunctional, particularly my sister.

    But there came a point, as adults, when we realized it had gotten out of hand and it wasn't really necessary to do anymore; during the year, if we saw something we wanted, well, we would just buy it. I will always treasure memories of my childhood Christmases, thanks largely to the generosity of grandma and grandpa, but that was then, this is now. If you are feeling mentally stressed or financially strained, that's your Self telling you to Stop. Take heed!

  7. My English Castle Says:

    I'm with you, CB. Drip, drip, drip.

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