Thursday, August 11, 2016

Spending update

Well, my official "mindful spending" has begun and it is a lot harder than I expected. In order to prepare, I did what I have put off for months. I went through each and everyone of my debit card purchases for the month of July. You know what I saw? A lot of money spent on useless purchases.

I realized that A pattern of boredom. Boredom was driving me to the stores. And not just nice stores like J. Crew and Nordstrom. I spend $136.72 AT CVS. I honestly don't even remember what I was buying. I'm sure it was for sunscreen or bug spray and next thing I know is new make up brush, a gift, things for the pool....

Doing a check on my entire month of spending was really eye opening and gave me the motivational to stop small spending. It's amazing how each day I can spend a good amount of money on nothing substantial. Figuring out that boredom was my reason for mindless spending, I tried to really fill my days with more productive activities (at least I tried week 1) and it worked! 

I stopped by my parent's house more frequently, stepped up my yoga game, and went for a walk in the neighborhood leading to less time at the mall/cvs/farmer's market. By filling my time with rewarding activities I wasn't tempted to buy, except for when my best friend invited to shop for her birthday outfit. I did find a gorgeous pair of jeans at the Nordstrom sale and bought them. Feeling guilty, I did return that Nordstrom top I bought earlier in the month and considered it a fair trade. Not ideal, but at least I didn't keep both items which is a win for me!

Check-in since August week 1:
1. Carried a water bottle each day to work, so no buying any bottles
2. Only got coffee at Starbucks one time for a coffee meeting at work 
3. Bought my lunch for the whole week, but left it at home (once) so I bought Jimmy Johns 
4. New jeans (but I returned a shirt of the same price I bought in June)

Not bad, but I can definitely improve. Lunch is a big money pit for me so I need to remember to bring it in each day.

Now for week 2 of August:

Week 2:
1. I bought coffee FOUR TIMES. Granted from McDonalds so I saved $1.05 but this is bad
2. I bought a necklace while I went on vacation in Naples for $53. I've been eyeing it an entire year, but still not an excuse.

In Week 2, I saw a new pattern emerge. When I "fall off the wagon" and buy one thing, I justify all my other purchases because I have the attitude of "well I already spent money...." So I wrote down all my purchases, came up with a new weekly budget to meet my needs, and lets say as a result of impromptu purchases I am now in survival mode. Not ideal, but I really need to break these spending habits and I really need to be more conscience of what I'm buying. 

The real test will be the weekend. Hopefully I can stay strong! 

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Being Mindful

Hello there!

It has been quite a while since I've visited this blog. Life took over, first with a three week jury duty trial, Junior League end of the year planning, transitioning into a new role and then finally finishing the apartment! With all of these new wonderful changes in my life, one thing was definitely hurting. My bank accounts have taken a major hit.

My relationship was money has always been a good one. I've always saved my money, budgeted my monthly income, and prioritized spending. Ever since moving out on my own a few years ago, slowly but surely I've been getting less conscious about my spending. I got sloppy, spending more and saving less each month. Telling myself "I'm living in the moment!" Well, that high that comes with the swipe of the credit card, the new package in the mail, only lasts so long.

I started to realized my triggers. When I had a bad day at work I would stop at the mall, go to the happy hour (even though I have tons of wine at home), and shop the sales online. I would buy a new pair of jeans even though I had two unworn jeans sitting in my closet. I knew I needed to cut that habit and start practicing mindful spending.

While I know that I can't change habits that have formed over the years overnight, I can make a plan and try to be mindful. It will be hard because even this morning I stopped by Nordstrom to look at the sale currently going on this month. Yesterday, I stopped at the grocery store for a bottle of wine even though I have 3 perfectly good bottles at home. I buy a water bottle at yoga every single class. I pick up coffee on the way to work every morning, sometimes even two when I'm anticipating a long day. All these purchases add up quickly. Taking a hard look at my bank account showed how many dumb purchases I make daily. I decided it was time to change, but I need to do it slowly.

I noticed I was spending over $25 dollars a week on buying water bottles and extra coffee a day. Only because I was running late and couldn't refill my water bottle. Or I would leave my travel mug at work for a week so I would justify my extra coffee purchase. $25=$100 a month I could be saving by taking just a few extra minutes a day. That is $1200 dollars a year! When I spell it out it makes a HUGE difference. I think of all the things I could do with that money: add to my wedding fund, the extra trip we have always wanted to take, building our dream house fund....all that could be a reality if I just practice mindful spending.

So I'm starting this journey into mindful spending slow. I will break my coffee and bottled water habit and move the money saved each month into a savings account. I'm going to use this blog to try to be accountable in my new journey throughout the next year. Hopefully this small change can propel bigger changes!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

New beginnings: tackling a huge project

Wow- it has been quite some time since I've been on this blog. A lot has happened over the years, but one big change has been moving to another part of Miami (Coconut Grove area)! While I was so sad to move from my tiny apartment, this place is SO MUCH bigger! It is a complete blank slate (we don't even have countertops) so I am very excited to start from scratch.

I'm going to use this blog to document my decorating journey. I have a few new, completely unlike me, ideas for the new place so it should be fun. The only things we took with us were our couch, tv stand, and bed (without headboard), which is basically everything. Should be a fun challenge, especially with wedding planning, so we really are up for the challenge of chic on a budget.

Our new area is in the true Miami area, mostly laid-back, simple, and earthy. It is old Miami so it will be exciting to incorporate these details into our ultimate design.

Here are a few before pictures (including hospital lighting, no countertops, and no working outlets):

1. Kitchen- we will be getting new dark countertops to compliment the wood cabinets. We are also getting the outlets changed from white to black to blend in. So hard to try to cook in this kitchen. I tried to make a New Years resolution about healthy eating, but who am I kidding? It is so hard to have the coffee maker, crock pot, and toaster on the floor. I've been guilty of ordering way too much food.

Living room- we are changing the light fixtures to add a softer light. We get plenty of natural light from the balcony door and large window. 

Bedroom- a little dark but hopefully our light furniture will brighten the room until we choose a color. I would love a light grey with white trimming. I've always been drawn to neutral rooms, with mostly beige, white, and grey colors. I feel like it makes it relaxing and peaceful. 

Bathrooms- we finally have a guest bathroom! This is a game changer. I could not be happier! The guest bathroom is a little small and dark but a nice light color and bright accents could do the trick. 

Our bathroom needs work. It is  decent size but a little outdated. I would love to change the mirrors over the sink to one large one with a modern border. I would also like to change the fixtures on the drawers to spice it up. It has potential to be dull, so I want to add bright and functional accents and paint a wall a darker color. 

Overall, I'm so excited to start working on this! Right now everything is plain white so it is a blank canvas waiting to be decorated! We will be making a lot of progress this week with our countertops and some paint. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Jack Rogers vs Stephen Bonanno

The other day I was wearing my silver Jack Rogers sandals to work and my friend from West Palm Beach asked me about them. I told her I bought them online and she told me about a long time battle between Jack Rogers and Stephen Bonanno. Being a Florida girl, I am very surprised I have never heard this!

I'm sure you all have heard how Jackie O wore her Jack Rogers sandals all the time, but according to Palm Beach shoe designer, Stephen Bonnano, she was actually wearing his shoes! I had to look into this story and found so many sources reporting that to be true, which really was surprising to me! Apparently, Stephen Bonanno, is the true designer of these sandals and everything else is a knockoff!

I've had Jack Rogers sandals for as long as I can remember and to me they are the comfiest pair of sandals ever! I have worn my pairs until they break. Now that I fould out about this feud, I want to check out the Stephen Bonnano sandals to see how different they really are! They are certainly in the same price range and I just read that you can custom make the sandals however you like! Any color combination or even leather that you bring in yourself can be used! Also- Lilly Pulitzer's grand daughters are frequent visitors of the factory in West Palm beach as well. Seems like it is worth a day trip to WPB especially since my Jack Rogers sandals has seen way better days. Can also be a birthday gift to myself ;)

Have you ever worn Stephen Bonnano sandals or do you swear by Jack Rogers?

Thursday, November 29, 2012

New life

Finally started this blog! I've been meaning to do this for months! I'm going to use this little blog as my creative outlet. Can't wait to start updating regularly!