Monday, May 31, 2010

No Spend Month Day 31: The Wrap Up

I've learned a lot of things this Month, but one thing struck me most of all. I have wonderful family and friends. They have been so overwhelmingly supportive and generous that a couple of times I felt like I was cheating. They've been there for me with constant encouragement and have treated me to lunches and even a movie. Above all I have to take a moment to thank my wonderful Boyfriend, without whom I surely would have cracked. It was very hard to leave a job I loved, even though I believe I'll be back, and he got me through that. That day I thought I just couldn't make it, he took me out for pizza and beer. He brought bottles of wine and a tub of decadent ice cream. These were just the physical tokens of his emotional support, which was constant and unfailing.

Anyways, that's enough mushy stuff, time to get to brass tacks: What did I spend?

I spent $99.32. Considering I spent more than that on each of my trips to Sephora last month, I'm pretty impressed with that.

I bought:
Milk, butter, eggs, honey, peanut butter sugar, green peppers, red peppers, corn on the cob, bananas, a candy bar and bag of chips, cheese, beans, peas, lettuce, rubber gloves, 4 cups of coffee (2 for Boyfriend, as small tokens of gratitude) 6 packets of vegetable seeds, and my last loonie went to an adorable little girl selling Kool-Aid to benefit the Janeway Children's Hospital.

The thing about this budget, is that it's unsustainable. I didn't buy any personal hygiene products, no clothing, no books, no gifts, less than $10 on entertainment. Also, I had a freezer stocked with chicken, salmon, ground beef and lamb stew. I had a pantry full of flours, pasta, lentils, rice, almond milk, chocolate chips, canned tomatoes, yeast, oils, vinegars and seasonings. I had large bags of apples, potatoes, carrots, onions and big head of celery. I even had a half bottle of wine for cooking.

This post is getting long enough, so I'll talk a bit more about lessons learned sometime this week. What I'm immediately taking away is this:

I set myself a goal and I achieved it. I lived on a very restricted budget for 1 month. I did it with help. I used what I had, I accepted the generosity of others, and I did without. I definitely think I'll do this again next year, and in the meantime I'll resolve to take my new habits forward. Here's to waste-less summer!

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