With my huge goals for getting financially fit in 2016, I’m trying to save (and earn) money in every possible way. I’m doing pretty well so far! But nobody is perfect (especially not me!) and mistakes are already being made on my financial journey. Mistakes in the form of wasted money! Here are 5 (dumb) ways I wasted money last month, and a special treat at the end of the post!
1 & 2: Not Being the “Pocket Police”
If you’re in charge of laundry in your household, you’re going to see where this one is going real fast! As a stay at home mom to two boys under three and the wife of a husband who works out 5-6 days per week, I am constantly doing laundry. To keep things manageable, I do a load a day, at least 6 days a week. I try to start a load in the morning, even if I don’t get it completely put away by the end of the day. Most of the time I am hyper-aware of which clothing needs a little extra attention (stain removal, etc), and I check all pockets. Some days are more hectic than others and I just toss everything in the machine!
In January I wasted money by not checking pockets and washing a Chapstick.
Not only is this annoying because now I’m down one Chapstick, but can also wreak havoc if the melted Chapstick leaks out of the container (will leave a grease stain on clothes). Luckily, I didn’t ruin any clothes this time around.
Money Wasted: $3
But then I left something MUCH pricier than lip balm in a sweatshirt pocket one day. My wireless, bluetooth-enabled, Beats headphones! I absolutely loved these headphones and used them for listening to podcasts at home and while working out at the gym. They sadly did not survive their journey in the washing machine. These count as a “luxury item” and will not be replaced any time soon! 🙁 *moment of silence for my headphones*
Wasted Money: $100+ Ouch! That one hurts!
3 & 4: Blizzard Brain
Jonas, the big Blizzard of 2016, paid a visit to our part of Virginia in January. We got over 2 feet at our house! In anticipation of the storm, I lost my mind a little. Did I stock up on water, de-icing salt, flashlights, batteries, and non-perishable foods like a responsible person? Um, no.
I love a good snow day and apparently use them as an excuse to stock up on junk food! If we were going to be snowed in, I wanted everyone to have “treats!” I purchased frozen pizzas, mac n cheese for my husband, pancake mix for breakfast, and special juices for my toddler. I treated myself to a package of “snow cookies” that were eaten before the first snowflake even fell! Whoops! 😉 (I’ll write more about my cookie problem later this month). I totally disregarded my price book and didn’t pay attention at all to prices for these fun food purchases! Snowflakes clouded my judgement, but luckily we still stayed within our overall January grocery budget.
Wasted Money: approximately $20
I was also very excited to play in the snow with my toddler, and ran out at the last minute to buy snow gloves. The only pair left in town 2 days before the blizzard hit was at least 7 sizes too big for my little guy, but I bought them anyways! They were hilariously big, and there was no way he could have made a snowball without serious help.
Wasted Money: $5
5: One Word: Babies.
My baby and toddler are not following my plan to get financially fit in 2016. If they were on board, they wouldn’t want to waste any food right? Cheerios, a food they both claim to love, are being chucked from highchairs, sprinkled in my car, and shoved between couch cushions. I think about my grocery budget every time I sweep handfuls of Cheerios up in the kitchen at the end of the day. I have even found Cheerios being hauled by Thomas the Tank Engine. I’m not even going to add up all of the half eaten apples or bananas that were thrown away because they ‘looked funny.’
Money Wasted: At least $2.50 (1/2 a box of Cheerios).
Let’s assess the damage for the entire month…
Total Money Wasted in January : over $130.50!
Yikes! $130.50 is a big deal when your budget is tight and you have a heavy load of debt. Please try not to repeat my silly money mistakes!
Want Money Saving Ideas?
This was meant to be a lighthearted post, and I hope you took it that way. Joking aside, I do know a lot of people out there (myself included) need to be really careful not to waste any money. If you’re more interested in ways to SAVE money, instead of wasting it like me, you should check out my friend Jamie’s blog Medium Sized Family. Jamie is a mom of 5 kids, so she’s basically a superhero. Like me, she has also set some big financial goals for 2016.
She has an awesome series called “5 Ways We’ve Saved” that has been running for over 20 weeks now! That’s over 100 ways to save money, so if you’re looking for creative tips she’s definitely got you covered! Her series inspired this post, and I hope you find some great ideas on her blog.
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