I woke up at 4:45 am and was unable to go back to sleep so I have been wandering around blog world and rediscovered an old favorite - Tasmanian Minimalist - and she has kicked off 365 days of not buying any clothing except for needed replacements. I don't have her wardrobe to fall back on but certainly don't need anything and have to keep reminding myself of that as I do tire of what is in my small wardrobe.
That led me to thinking about where I do splurge. Eating out is one of our pleasures and an area where I am the one to initiate spending. Yesterday at the start of week 3 of Hubby's furlough we tried a new restaurant for lunch. It was a lot of fun and got us exploring a different part of town than we usually go to. I am thinking that going out to lunch needs to be our habit as it is less expensive than dinner. As a bonus, we are looking at different types of housing and neighborhoods with an eye to how we would like to live in the future. I think we would both move right now and experience a different lifestyle for the next 4 years (until retirement) if it wouldn't make Hubby's commute a pain. Guess we will have to start exploring new neighborhoods nearer to his office rather than the direction we tend to orient towards.
I also booked a massage as I have pain in my upper back/shoulders. I could probably work it out with Ibuprofen, stretching and time but am impatient with these things. Again, spending that only I initiate.
We both want to spend on travel but find ourselves gulping over the costs at times. Right now we are considering a trip to Cuba vs. Key West while we are living so close to both. Once the government shutdown is over we can plan dates with a bit more confidence and make a decision as well as when to head out to see our kids again.
I did manage to reduce a bit the amount our car insurance increased. Now that I am retired one car can be reclassified for leisure use with a small corresponding decrease in cost. We are also both going to complete AARP's safe driver course since the resulting discount gets applied for 3 years. This 6 month bill however will hardly be affected as the discount is only a bit more than the course cost.
I also cleaned out and washed my car as the full service car wash I have used has gone out of business and I couldn't think of another one nearby. After I finished I did think of one LOL. My car has never been so clean however and that paid for a bit of our lunch out.
So much of our spending is necessary but not pleasurable. In those areas I really try to find out how we can reduce our costs (e.g. car insurance). I want to make sure we can still spend some on the fun things for the rest of our lives!