It’s Canada Day long weekend so I hope my fellow Canadians are taking some time for themselves and I hope the weather is cooperative. I also hope that those affected by flooding are receiving the assistance they need at a time like this.
As far as my spending diet goes… I’m on week 2 and while there have been no major revelations or hiccups, I found that having these spending guidelines in addition to using my financial tracker app have made me aware of a few things:
On my road to embracing a more simple, minimalist lifestyle in the things I own and that are in my house I’ve found it easier not bringing more stuff into my home. I feel if I need to bring something in then it makes some sense that something should go out. While I’m in the process of scaling back on what I have I found I’m really just surrounded by what I need and not so much what I want which is good.
However, the focus has kind of shifted to food and not enough on exercise. Confession time: I haven’t been running in over a month. I know. Shocker. I couldn’t run a 10k right now even if I wanted to. I would have to start again and work up to that distance probably starting with a 5k, then 7 then probably a 10. I feel the need to get back to that but I haven’t quite convinced myself to get going quite yet.
My weight, which normally would reflect my non-running and inflate, has been maintained and it’s probably due to my cycling! I commute to work by bike so at the very least I’m biking 40km/week. I try and bike slowly sometimes so I’m not a sweaty mess by the time I reach the office (this hair is like a greenhouse under a helmet) but I keep a good speed and it usually only takes me 11 minutes to get there. And my legs feel stronger so I’m kind of happy that I have another method of keeping myself active even when I’m not running.
Plus, now that I have bike panniers my life has been made infinitely easier. Although the trick is not to fill it just because you have space. And it’s also tricky, sometimes I’ll take only pannier but then realize I need to take my work laptop home and then I have to stuff everything into one and then I feel lopsided… Anyway! It’s great having these. I recommend them.
Now, on to money. I realize, more than I need to do a spending diet, is that I need to budget. I recently purchased a ticket to visit a friend in Alberta at the end of July. This has been long overdue and I’m excited to finally go so on Thursday I purchased a ticket. I did use Airmiles so I only paid the taxes and fees but those were still $173 (boo). But! I’m going on a plane that is taking me somewhere other than to visit my parents for the first time… ever actually… It’s going to be fun!
I realized I was spending too much on groceries. I found since I didn’t give myself a budget, and that groceries were a ‘necessary’ item, I would go to the store more often than needed and spend a little too much. To remedy this I’m going to create meal plans, two weeks at a time, and a budget.
I don’t know that I will continue the spending diet which kind of sounds like a cop-out, but I’ve recognized my shortfalls, what works for me and what I need to work on (less chips being one thing).
Plus! I opened a savings account specifically for putting away money for my 2014 Angola trip! Yay me!