In January, our family did our first “No Spending Month“, and it was fantastic – really made me step back and think about our money spending habits. I committed to doing it again. I decided July was a good month - but I couldn’t actually do a “No Spending Month” – we had a vacation planned and Peter’s Baptism (while not a huge shindig, we normally don’t account for food and drinks for a party in our normal monthly budget). But I really needed to reel in my spending. So I took a long look at the last couple months and realized I needed to do a No Shopping Month instead of a No Spending Month. I’d just bought all three children new summer wardrobes, and on the tails of my Whole30 success, I did a wee bit of new wardrobe shopping for myself. And that was warranted, but I needed to check my online shopping habits before they got out of control. And No Shopping July was a success. Here’s why: We really don’t go overboard in the eating out or grocery shopping department. I don’t buy a lot of prepackaged snacks that generally send a grocery budget out of control – I mostly shop the perimeter of the grocery store and buy only what’s on the list for meals for the week. When we do eat out, it’s a celebration, not a daily occurrence, so it’s not like that was out of control. But a quick $50 online Gap purchase adds up when you’re making three a week.
So, with the kids’ Fall and winter wardrobes pretty well setup, my own wardrobe feeling meh but workable for Fall (not to mention three “killing time before we pick T up at school” Target trips a week over the last two weeks…that I honestly can’t tell you what I bought during) I figured it was now or never on my next No Shopping Month. Specifically, this means no impulse buying for myself or for Nell. Boy clothes, while adorable, just don’t have the same “BUY IT NOW” effect on me as toddler girl clothes do. I need to buy two black sweat suits and some felt for Tom and Nell’s Halloween costumes (because homemade sweatsuit costumes are my jam), but the weekly budget can absorb those costs.
So, that’s my October Challenge: No [Unnecessary] Shopping. I will buy Peter and Nell diapers this month because they’re both almost out. I will buy those two $10 sweatsuits for Halloween. And we’ll buy groceries and household items that we run out of. But otherwise, no shopping. No recreational Target trips, no wardrobe additions, no Pumpkin Spice Lattes (they’re not Whole30 anyway). And hopefully we’ll end October with a little extra in our savings account. How are your budgets going? Anyone want to join me in my No Shopping (except for Halloween costumes) challenge?