When I started this blog five months ago, I did not expect to be writing so much about money! As I dip a toe into the personal finance waters, I often worry about not being perfect. Our budget isn’t perfect. Our journey to get out of debt isn’t perfect.
There are some things we spend money on that would probably surprise people. We choose to spend money on fitness (gym memberships and supplements for my husband), and our only real source of entertainment – cable and internet. These splurges are necessary to both our mental and physical well-being as we endure an otherwise strict budget in an attempt to improve our finances.
But I know I’m not alone! I have been listening to a new podcast – the SO Money Podcast with Farnoosh Torabi. She ends each thirty minute interview by doing a lightening round of questions with her guest. One of the questions she almost always asks is “What is one thing you spend money on that makes your life better or easier?”
The answers are always fascinating. Tony Robbins? Private jets for his frequent travel (and don’t roll your eyes, go listen to episode #1 for his explanation). David Bach? Babysitters (very expensive in his area of New York) so he can have regular date nights with his wife!
Of course, most of Farnoosh’s podcast guests are wildly successful authors, speakers, entrepreneurs and financial experts and they might have a little more “splurge” money than me. I started to wonder – what about everyone else? What splurges are worth it? What do we spend on that truly makes our lives better and easier?
So I asked “What is one thing you spend on that makes life easier and better?” and got tons of great answers! I hope you’ll enjoy reading them! 🙂
Splurging on Food & Drink
For me, it’d be my Keurig. It saves me time and money! -Heather of Simply Save
Frozen/pre-packaged/pre-cut foods. I used to buy the cheapest version of every food: dried beans instead of canned, whole fruits and vegetables instead of pre-cut. Since both my kids are tiny and easily meltdown around dinner time, it’s easier right now to save the time for dinner prep. I hate spending the extra money but know I’ll get back to my frugal ways once they get to be more independent. -Hannah of Eat, Drink and Save Money
Amazon Prime! With three young kids, I try to avoid going to torture chambers like the grocery store more than once a week, but it never fails that I’ll forget something! So being able to order something – often at a better price than stores offer anyway – and have it at my doorstep in one or two days is priceless. -Candis of Candis Lynn
Coffee!! Hehe. But I’d say Amazon Prime is way up there. -Amber of Thrifty Guardian
With three growing, always hungry boys, I love my Plan to Eat menu planning tool. I can plan out my menus, organize my recipes and print out my shopping lists easily. It helps us save a small fortune from going out to eat with a family of five. -Tanya of Mom’s Small Victories
Amazon Prime and pre-cut veggies from the grocery store! Beck of Becklist
We really focus on frugal living, but I am willing to spend a bit more on healthier snack choices for the family. In particular, for the kids: rice chips rather than potato chips, whole food nutrition bars rather than regular granola bars, etc. -Gina of Money Savvy Living
Shopping at Aldi’s! I save so much money on just about everything! -Sara of Cook With 5 Kids
Grocery shopping delivered! Shop online – takes a sec because I’ve saved my “staples” list – and delivered to my door! -Melissa of Picasso Jasper
Splurging as Parents
My big splurge was buying a double stroller so I could easily walk to the beach and park with the kids. Family thought I was crazy but it really saved my life last summer! -Tori of The Mama Nurse
Amazon Prime Membership – we use subscribe and save to buy all of our baby stuff: diapers, wipes, formula, tylenol, baby wash, whatever. It all just comes to the door once a month so I never have to think about it! -Jessica of About a Boy
An investment I was very happy to have made was on our baby camera. We have one in the living room (the nanny cam) and one in the baby’s room (that we just call the baby cam). I have an app on my phone so I can check in on my sweet little man anytime I need to. This was particularly helpful when I first returned to work and was still breastfeeding and pumping. I always had the cam app up while I was pumping. When we moved the baby to his crib in his own room, having a camera meant I didn’t have to go up the stairs to check on him all the time. I just pull up the app on my phone, see that he is OK, and go back to sleep. -Julie of Fab Working Mom Life
I think it was preschool or child care. We didn’t have family nearby and even at the start, I did it only a day or two a week, but it really helps. I was always freelancing, but it’s nice to have my own time too. I didn’t realize that preschool was a luxury at first. -Lana of Kid Can Doodle
Splurging on Ourselves
We have a house cleaner who comes every other week and she has given us our time back! No more hours of deep cleaning for us – we find that the small amount we pay makes it beyond worth it when we are able to spend that time with our sons. -Katie of Love My Messy Messy Mess
Biggest one for me would be Hulu. $11.99/month instead of almost $200 for satellite. More family time and more money in our pockets. -Jennifer of The Search for Imperfection
Manicure and pedicure. The downtime and pampering is priceless. -Nancy of Nancy Andres Writer
I definitely believe in investing money into things that you will use for a long time. For example – I don’t buy cheap jeans. I buy $40-50 jeans. The last time I bought jeans was 2 years ago, and that’s just because I wanted a new style. I take care of my more expensive purchases, like blue jeans, electronics, and cookware, and they last years. This saves money in the long run and makes my life easier because I’m not always replacing stuff. -Brittany of Champagne and Cheerios
Is internet service too obvious? Most people consider that a need these days, but at our most basic level, it really isn’t. -Jamie of Medium Sized Family
My monthly membership to Massage Envy makes life better. And I am seriously considering a virtual assistant for my VA/Tech Support business. -Merri of Merri Dennis
The first thing I thought of was Photoshop and Lightroom, which I get for $10/month with Adobe Creative Cloud. I use Lightroom for organizing all my photos and I don’t know if I could ever do without it! Of course Photoshop is the industry standard for photo editing. -Christina of Martha Martha
Travel … a way to escape routine and expand your horizons. -Tanya of Motherly Adventures
Splurging in Business
A virtual assistant! -Laura of Momstyle Your Business!
To make my blogging life easier, I invest in Tailwind. I spend twenty minutes a week setting up my pins and I’m done! For my mommy life, I splurge on baby carriers. My Ergo and Tula and wraps are essential to raising babies and blogs. -Suzi of Start a Mom Blog
My virtual assistant makes things easier for me because it allows me to focus on making-making opportunities, event management, and more quality time to assemble our goody bags. -Marilyn of Social PR Goody Bags
(Stay at home yogi is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com)