My mom bought a new couch for her office recently. The day her couch came, her house was hit by lightning, frying most of her electronic equipment. I joked that the gods of finance sent that lightning bolt for buying something so expensive. She was not amused. I was.
But she said something I think we all can dig: We save in some areas so we can splurge in others. I like that, I really do. I think her 42 million Tiffany lamps are ridiculous, she thinks it’s ridiculous that I must hie myself to a beach at least twice a year so I can bury my feet in the sand and really feel alive. Unless you’re ridiculously wealthy, you can’t have everything you want. But you can save for what you need- even if your need seems dumb to someone else.
I know a guy who eats out for every single meal, yet slept on a futon mattress for 2 years until he could save enough for a nice mattress. In my mind, he could have eaten at home for 2 months and saved that money, but see, that’s the thing. He really enjoys going out to eat. Sleeping on a futon mattress was for him, less of a big deal than giving up going out to eat.
I see an awful lot of judgment on this here internets about what people choose to spend their money on. Awhile back I saw a post on a frugality community I read where someone was having (or trying to have, I don’t remember the exacts) a baby and wanted frugal baby tips. One of the commenters said something like, “Yeah, to save lots of money on having kids, DON’T HAVE THEM. Kids are expensive.” That led to a big argument on whether kids are worth the cost, etc. But the point is, who were they to judge?
That’s why I’m here asking you guys what your “stupid” splurge is. Maybe if we admit what our splurges are in a non-judgmental space, we can stop feeling guilty about our splurges and move on. And next time you’re getting some harassment about what your splurge is, direct them to this post.
I’ll start. I have a few splurges. I have the good cable. I have HBO and Starz and I have a DVR. That’s practically tightwad sacrilege, but I’ll qualify that with the fact that I own almost no DVDs and haven’t been to the movie theater in forever. Sure, I could watch most of this stuff online, but I like my cable.
And like I said up top, I have to get out to the beach at least twice a year. This wouldn’t be much of a splurge if I happened to live near the ocean, but I’m in Tennessee. I save money on that by having friends I can stay with for free, (Do you live near the ocean? Want to be my friend?) and I try to cut down on costs in several other ways. Look for a post on saving money while vacationing here soon.
Finally, I like to go out to eat. If having the good cable is tightwad sacrilege, then this is downright tightwad blasphemy. I’m surprised the financial gods didn’t hit my house while they were at it. Now, we don’t eat out nearly as much as my pal up there who slept on a futon mattress, but we do like to hit the ol’ Blue Coast Burrito every now and again.
Let me admit- when money gets tight, these splurges do stop, so don’t lay awake at night worrying if I’m able to eat because I have the good cable, okay? But I do budget for these luxuries, and I feel blessed that we are able to have them.
So, don’t let me hang out there in the wind, Home Eccers. What are your splurges?