So I think the challenge is almost up, yes? I think March 1.
Here's the deal. I sort of wandered from the initial intention, which was to not shop. At all. We've been doing great with a budget. Even went to using cash for variable expenses and are using an envelope system. It has made us stick to a budget and has cut spending tremendously.
But there was Valentine's Day. We get the kids a little something and a card to celebrate a day about love. And a little token from Hubs and I to each other. We sent cards to family with a picture of the kids. Such things were probably way off the shopping embargo's path. I just have to mark a special day with a little special-ness. In the dead of winter we all need a little lift. I'm talking $5 toys for the kids and a $.99 card. Just a little token.
Also, gifts. We've had some family members' birthdays come up and no shopping embargo could stop me from sending them a little gift.
What this challenge has taught me is something that I'll continue with for the rest of the year. It has put a stop to impulse purchases and to emotional spending. Throwing stuff in the cart just for fun. I'm keeping "stuff" to a minimum. I'm not using my credit card. I'm planning purchases and budgeting for it. If we have something to buy, it has to come out of our budget. It has put the brakes on retail therapy.
It is a great exercise, I highly recommend. It's not over for me on March 1st, I'll be using my new habits from now on.