Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats: Could You Not Spend a DIME for 30 Days?

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Could You Not Spend a DIME for 30 Days?


Timeout!

I'll be back to regular recipe programming in a couple of days {think....turkey sloppy joes...killer!}.  But until then we are going to talk about money.  Please don't sign off now that you heard we are talking about money, stay with me on this one, you might learn a thing or two.

Here is the back story.

A few months back, my friend Kelli from The Sustainable Couple was chatting about this book, The Spending Strike.  A few days later I asked my library to order it {they'll do that you know}.  When it came in I read it in a day.  It's not deep, it's pretty short, it really is just a book about a mom {from Iowa!} who was a bit fed up with their spending habits so she called a strike.

For the month of January they would not spend ANY money.  Nothing.  Zilch.  Zip.  A day before the strike started they made a large grocery run, took cash out for two tanks of gas and paid all their bills for the month.

Some days were easy peasy.  Like the days when Iowa winters hit them hard and were snowed in and couldn't get out of the house if they tried.  But other days proved much harder.  Like the day when her parents called spur-of-the-moment and offered to babysit the kids so they could have a dinner/date night out.  Since they weren't keen on telling her parents about the strike they spent all day trying to figure out how they could go out and find a way to pay for dinner.  One HUGE bag of pop cans later {found in their garage}, they had enough cash to buy dinner out.

Shortly after reading this book, Kelli announced on her blog, along with my friend Michelle at Simplify, Live, Love that they were both going to tackle a Spending Strike for the month of January.



And then they asked if I wanted to join.

{Enter thumping heartbeat HERE.}

I thought about it  I really did.  I asked the husband {with a thumping heartbeat}.  He looked at me and said, "don't we pretty much do that anyway?"

He was right, we pretty much do a strike every month.  So I told Kelli and Michelle that we would not be participating....BUT....I would be happy to share OUR story.  Next week on both of their blogs I will be telling our story.  I'm not going to give away the details here, but I dive into the past 4 years of our life.  It's gets a little personal, I am a little nervous in sharing it, but I wanted my readers to know that money shouldn't be scary.

We are no longer scared of money, because now we control it.  We choose a program to follow that was right for US and in the past 13 months have paid off over $12,000 in debt. We now live on a cash system and hope to someday be completely debt free.

Yes, I said completely debt free.  It can be done.  Don't laugh!

So.  Here are my questions to you.

Could you not spend a dime for 30 days?

Could you do at least 2 weeks?

Could you plan your meals and eat out of the freezer to use up all those "items" taking up space?

Could you find free, exciting, fun things for the family to do?

Could you not drive your partner nuts?

I'm interested in hearing your thoughts.  Could you do it?  Want to read the book first?  Do you want control of your money?

Leave me a comment and lets get this discussion rolling.

And don't forget to tune in next week for MY STORY.

12 comments:

  1. Steph@Been There Baked ThatJanuary 2, 2014 at 8:42 PM

    Ally- I'm really excited to hear more of your story! We really don't spend a lot either and when we do our strike next month I think it should be pretty easy. I mainly wanted to focus on eating from our pantry and freezer and make sure all of that food gets used up and not wasted. You should be so proud of yourselves, that's a huge accomplishment!

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  2. Thanks Steph! I'm excited to share our story and how we did it....mainly just for those that are struggling and think it can't be done, because it can! Will you be blogging about your strike in February? I'd love to follow it!

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  3. Melissa Paul CrawfordJanuary 2, 2014 at 9:41 PM

    I am excited to hear your story. Funny you are talking about this subject because I decided this morning that we would be going on our own spending makeover. I have to get hubs on board still but since I run the money ship I am making some changes and actually you inspired me :)

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  4. How fantastic that you paid off $12K in debt in 13 months!!! Can't wait to share Part 2 on SimplifyLiveLove next week! :-)

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  5. We were just discussing whether to do this. It's nice to be at a point in life where I don't have to worry about money every day, which I know used to be one of my top stressors. A spending freeze isn't very realistic because I don't keep a well-stocked pantry, but the idea behind it interests me. We'll probably start some modified version this weekend. Can't wait to hear your story, Ally!

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  6. A modified version is better than nothing Danielle! Good luck!

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  7. Happy to inspire you Melissa:) Getting the hubs on board might be the hardest part....BUT...once you get rolling it gets easier. I'm not going to lie though, it is tough! P.S. we need a playdate soon, but it is just too COLD to leave the house!

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  8. Steph@Been There Baked ThatJanuary 3, 2014 at 6:40 PM

    I will! Although I'm sure not an everyday update because I do want to make sure I'm posting new recipes as well. Maybe a weekly update? We'll see :)

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  9. Autumn @ Good Eats GirlJanuary 4, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    Can't wait to read the rest of your story, Ally! That is a massive amount of debt that you paid off last year...I'm excited to hear the details! I've been thinking about doing this in February...I think I need to read the book and go from there!

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  10. I love this topic, but first I have to say "hello" to Autumn at Good Eats Girl - miss her posts! My story is that my Dad was an artist growing up - he had successful years and not so successful years - so it was basically feast or famine. I only have one credit card that has $1000 limit in case of emergencies. I only use it for $20 a month and then pay it off immediately to keep it active. My husband and I haven't had "BIG" credit cards since we got married - and living a life debt free (well, we have two car payments and our mortgage) but that's it.


    So excited to hear your story! Hugs!

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  11. Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca)January 6, 2014 at 9:17 PM

    Hmmm, I think I would have a really hard time with that ... I feel like something would come up ... but it might be interesting to try.

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  12. About 7 years ago we drank the Dave Ramsey kool-aid and got our finances in gear. We had been completely debt free 3 years before that after paying off student loans and a car loan, but we bought a house and with it came a few unexpected little debts. So, we paid off all those little debts. Right now we have about 9-12 months of living expenses in the bank, our only debt is our mortgage, and we're saving for a larger house (5 kids and 1100 sq feet get really cramped in the winter).

    I can't wait to read your story! I love hearing how people turned their finances around. Thanks for sharing via Life: Simplified Project!

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