Friday, March 2, 2012

spending freeze

Oh my word, if you read my post from Feb 6 about living in excess then you will know what I am coming through.  The Lord has been rocking me to the core when it comes to how much we have and spending.  Not to mention I read the book called 7 by Jen Hatmaker which shook me all up.  So I have now just completed 30 days of a somewhat spending freeze.  No clothes for me, no clothes for the kids or John, no toys for the kids, no random target pick up as I'm on my way to checkout.  Nothing. (wait, i take that back, ok small confession, I did buy the kids new crocs because we are headed to brazil in a few days and the ones from last summer are not fitting...)
I thought this would be DRUDGERY, TREACHEROUS, FULL OF TEMPTATION for me... but surprisingly... it was actually the opposite.

First I started by unsubscribing from all advertising emails. Goodbye loft, zappos, j.crew, and yes even you my sweet mini boden.  Do not flood my inbox each day with little tempting "I can't pass that deal up" feelings. Then I proceeded to stop by the trash after I got the mail and didn't even flip through any catalogs, they went straight to the trash. Next, I canceled all credit cards, we don't really use them, some I just had to get points or whatever else, but it was the principal of the matter.  I stayed out of the malls, I only stayed in the grocery side of target, etc.  I took 70 items to platos closet and deposited the money straight into my account for Uganda.

It was surprisingly not that painful.  It was actually freeing. It didn't take up any of my mental capacity this month wanting for myself or my kids who have so much. I think it was not coincidental that we had such a better month in our house.  John and I's conversations were sweeter, the kids and I had a lot more fun and a lot less just trying to pass by the hours. "Wanting" and "stuff" was taking up way too much space in my heart.

This month I am taking it a step further.  I will only spend in 7 places (one of those being online bill pay, otherwise power, gas, cell phone bill, house payment, etc would eat up all my 7!). This will be a challenge for me because basically it is knocking out eating out.  This has been a big one for us.  This will take some extra planning. But it is so worth it. Plus, maybe it helps I'm easing into it since we will be gone for 10 days of the month ;)

This post is definitely not a "look at me, I am doing all the right things" post.  But more so of how I have missed the mark and wasted time, energy and money on the wrong things.  I have set the wrong example for our kids as far as stuff has gone.  God is changing my heart.  So I hope you hear that in my post, and an encouragement to start putting it on the altar if that is you. It hurts at first, it makes you realize how it is just habit sometimes.  But oh the sweet freedom that comes with less.

And I am not regretting the however many 100's of dollars I would have spent that will now go to a sweet Ugandan daughter and make her feel beautiful, loved, valued, special and worth of a gift just for her.
 (picture courtesy of about a similar trip and giving out headbands)

1 comment:

  1. While not quite so extreme, I did something similar for a year when I gave up clothes buying. Totally changed the way I viewed my purchasing! Thanks so much for sharing.