July 16, 2010

Financial Friday -

I've whined mentioned a couple of times how I want a computer with Internet access at home, but its just not in the budget right now.  More so for the monthly Internet fee than the couple hundred dollars that it would cost to buy a computer.  Jay uses a Verizon card, so sharing isn't an option.  If I'm unwilling to waste $60 a month on cable, why should I be willing to spend a similar amount to get on the Internet every now and then?

Dave Ramsey, on his radio show a few weeks ago quoted David Campbell, who put it all as concise as possible: "Discipline is remembering what you want."

What is it that I really want?  A shower that I can comfortably shave my legs in.  (The current shower is a tiny 2 foot by 2 foot stall).

 I want a tub that I can fill will hot water and soak in after a hard day/training session.  (Current tub is jetted, but too large to realistically fill with water & enjoy.  Seriously - you could fit 3 of me in there!)

Jay said after his next commission check that we'd start seriously looking at a new bathroom remodel.  That was 2 months ago.  He went through a dry spell for over a month and it went on so long he forgot about his comment.

The Bible says "Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12 The bottom line is I'm heart-sick and having trouble remembering what I want because it seems so far away.

So while a new fancy gadgets might be nice - a beautiful claw foot tub with shower adapter and a double bowl vanity in my master bath would be nicer.

I just need reassurance that my frugalness, couponing, and careful attention to budgeting is going to pay off.  Sooner rather than later.  I don't want to pass on movie invites, skimp on vacations, or deny myself cable & Internet for the rest of my life just for the sake of being a cheapskate.

The good news? After a couple of months of no closings, July seems to be Jay's month.  We're going to start getting quotes from contractors at the end of the month (once we've got our checks in hand...erm...in the bank).

I want to enjoy my money, I suppose my wants in life are just a little too grand. I'm willing to give up the little things for my dreams.  I'm just not willing to give up the little things AND the big things.

Which is it for you?  Would you rather have a luxury home but no cable or an apartment filled with gadgets and such?  I find it interesting to see what people think brings them most happiness  (when it comes to material things). No right or wrong answers here.  Well except "the free wildflowers that grow in my back yard make me happy." 

While that may be true, that's not what we're talking about here.  I know we're all living in a material world.  So material girl - talk to me!


  1. I can go without the ipod, cable, big tv...but I don't think I could go without internet! Good for you though!

  2. Great post. Great rationalization on your part! We talk like we want things in that order then we lose control or discipline & go get the little things that end up putting the bigs off a bit longer. for now we are paying what we have now, off to get a newer truck in April. I need your discipline!!!

  3. Hmm....I have cable AND internet. If I had to cut one out, I'd axe the internet. Husband would never ever let me cancel cable (his other wife, ESPN, also lives here). Given the choice of lots of fun technology stuff or big lovely house projects, I'd take the house stuff anyday!

    Although, we've sacrificed saving money for home improvements for the travel fund. So I guess it's clear where our priorities are :)

  4. For me, internet is important. More important than a bigger bathroom. That is what is nice bout humanity though. We are all different.

    To me, it is very important to spend money now and not always say 'let's wait.' Life is short. I don't know how long I have and I want to relish every moment. I decided I don't NEED to save 40 percent if it means we miss out on special things we can be doing right now in our every days : ) So we don't. God has provided for us and our needs are met and we are HAPPY as can be!

  5. We actually gave up DVR...for a day. Then, turns out, Kyle found out we were actually overpaying by about $40 anyway, and he was able to get the DVR back in a bundle package (don't ask; I hate Suddenlink; they've been killing us on bills) for just $10 extra. We're still saving $30/month. Have I mentioned I HATE Suddenlink???

    Claw-foot bathtub, ahhh....I actually have my dream bath designed with the tub in the middle. I want a HUGE bathroom, a HUGE closet, and a HUGE kitchen. Everything else can be whatever size, lol!!

  6. You are smart with your money. I think life's too short. I'm sure you have saved more than your fair share for that rainy day. I would love a macbook...and you know I've been wanting that for a long time. :)

  7. When Chris and I first got married and lived in an apartment we didn’t have cable or internet. We also only had old school flip phones. The only splurging we would do is to buy a new $5.00 movie out of the bin every time we went shopping. That is how we entertained ourselves. Because we did that we have over 300 movies on DVD. Now that we have a house we have both cable and internet. Since we aren’t saving for the house any more (it’s only 9 years old and doesn’t need updates) we splurge on other things. I think your thought process is completely reasonable.

  8. Hate to say I don't think I could live with out the internet or cable. And to be honest, when we bought our house 9yrs ago we had the bathrooms redone before we moved in and Hurricane Ike had us remodel the rest. Good for you on staying focused. I have a hard time when it comes to long term. I want to see results now, kinda like mowing the grass. You can see it immediately.

  9. My mister likes gadgets, but he's fairly reasonable, too. He is also a web designer, so the internet is a necessity. We splurge some, like we have cable (70 channel family package), but we watch it on a 13-year-old 25" TV! We had a budget for a few decorative things when we bought the new house ~ but when that $ was gone, I was done decorating (for now)! My backyard & patio are full of 70% off plants, clearance items & hand-me-downs! I'm tempted to splurge more often instead of putting more toward our debt ~ thank you for the reminder to think about what it is that I really want! I want to be debt free for starters!

  10. great question!!! ummmm i dont know.
    i kind of think I would take a smaller place and have all the gadgets!!

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  12. I could go on & on about this, and I consider myself fairly non-materialistic! ;-)

    We tend to splurge on travel, technology, and food. Some of that is "have to"; technology is both of our field, and we have distant family to visit. We've gotten better about the food in some ways (not so much eating out), but not in others (some health food stuff is expensive).

    You've heard me whine about home improvement stuff, but I think it's because we're overwhelmed by where to start. Most of it is cosmetic, neglected-on-purpose while dog was still alive and yakking on the carpet and kids spilling stuff on it. I think it may be time to paint and carpet, but practical stuff like insulation and windows may trump that for awhile. I really like the furniture we've gradually bought to replace our Early Collegiate pieces.

    Biggest non-practical wish list items? Tri gear. I'd love a wetsuit and a proper road bike.

  13. Just like with anything, you definitely want to strive for balance! I admire that you save especially because I am not the best at it BUT, don't do it to the point where you'll go crazy! You deserve treats now and then. Love the discipline quote and excited to read about your remodel! Glad it's your hubby's month!! Now go enjoy your weekend Brooke!

  14. Gadgets all the way. Except I hate gadgets. So I guess things like internet and cute pillows and my crackberry and a vacation fund. I could care less about living in a house I own or can remodel. Seriously. I mean, I know it's "the thing" that everybody wants, but I don't. I'm happy to rent for the rest of my life. I'll pick the places that look how I want them to look, and pay someone else to deal with the problems and then pick up and move whenever I want. Clearly, I moved a lot as a child :)

    I start to have palpitations at the thought of owning a home or doing any kind of remodeling. It's just not my thing!

  15. Let's see. I have cable, internet, laptop, Blackberry, ipod. My 6 yo has my old laptop and my husband has his own desktop. We like our stuff. But we also live in a fairly nice house. No new cars for us - ours work just fine. And I do want to do some remodeling in the new home which will require cutbacks in other areas. Material girl? Mmm, yeah. But money/stuff definitely doesn't buy happiness. Personally, I admire your discipline and ability to know what you really need. I think it's awesome.

  16. It is definitely a hard choice for a lot of us.

  17. I don't know if I could survive without the internet...sometimes it's my only connection with the outside world!

    But I do know what you mean about having to sacrifice so you can have the things your heart longs for.

  18. Hmmmmm It is actually funny to think about. We have to have the whole fast internet cable thing at home because my husband works at home so it is just part of his job. So it is something I have just never thought about whether I wanted it or not because it is just here.
    BUT if you were going to take it away from me after all these years I might have a little problem with that! ha ha You get used to stuff.
    I've never been too materialistic. When we make the choice to buy something we then, literally, keep it till it falls apart!
    But I do understand what you are saying about picking and choosing. You are thinking smart!!

    Good job :D

  19. gadgets, I can take or leave - with the exception of a pc and internet access, everything else is expendable.

    But books to read, and bookshelves to hold them, and a comfy sofa to curl up on and read them, and a nice bed to snuggle in with my hubby, and a maybe a little bit of green or a playground for my girls to play in... that's much more important to me.


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