Yesterday I shared a post on things we spend money on, and today I’m sharing things we don’t (generally) spend money on. I’m not rigid about these “rules” though and view it more as a guide.
Don’t get me wrong. I love books and I’m an avid reader. I used to buy books at thrift stores or book sales and pretty soon I had a collection of books that I never read. I just kept collecting.
I’ve since stopped buying physical books to curb that behavior. Instead, I use the library, or borrow/buy digital books to read on my Kindle. I guess I’m more likely to read a book if I paid for it digitally than a physical book?! 😉
Which leads me to…
I love technology. But I don’t generally buy apps. I really have to consider if I’ll use it consistently or enough to make it worthwhile. Every app I buy I have to factor in my device’s storage space, how much time I’ll mindlessly “waste” by playing on it or using the screen.
We don’t buy our kids toys. I think we’ve built up their playroom enough that they are generally content. They’ll get toys from their grandparents for holidays and then they get other “treats” through activities we do, like going to The Home Deport workshops, or programs through the library and community to supplement!
As they get older, we’ll reevaluate the toy situation (like switching out Duplos for Legos) and go from there. When we’re out shopping we let them look in the toy section, and sometimes they’ll hold it, but when we tell them it’s time to put it back, they’re usually pretty good about it.
IP (Intellectual Property) Products
I didn’t realize I did this subconsciously until recently! I thought I just had a general dislike of cartoons and products as ads on clothes, toys, etc., but it’s also because these items cost more! If I compare a t-shirt that has a certain female character that has ice powers versus just a regular blue shirt, there is a price difference! Sometimes it’s a few dollars, but other times it’s more.
So again, the exception is that I’ll buy it if it’s on sale/clearance, or with my children, usually grandparents will supplement for those items!
I love movies but I’ve found that I don’t like being in a movie theater. People put their feet up on seats in front of them, phones beep or ding, you can’t press “pause” to use the restroom, etc. I’m much happier at home, with our own big screen, on our comfy sofa with handwork or other craft project to for me to work on. So, when my kids are older, then I would love to take them to a discounted kids summer showing, or a drive-through, just so they can have the experience too. Otherwise, I’m happy to wait for the DVD to come out!
When we lived in Virginia, we used to go out to eat with my family a couple times a week! Once we moved to Texas though, our behavior changed. Not only were we in the middle of “nowhere” but also it just wasn’t worth the headache of taking two young children out. They weren’t at the age to really sit through an entire meal and I would constantly worry and nag if they were getting enough food.
Now they’re older and we’ve moved to a more central location, we go out to eat maybe once a month. But that only happens if we have visitors! If we go out to eat, it’s usually international foods like sushi or Chinese dim sum.
There are so many other options available. Since it keeps in line with our family goals of keeping the kids mostly screen-free, it’s nice to not mindlessly watch television or have it on for “background noise.”
The latest and greatest
So, this is kind of a big general category. We’re not one to be the “early adapters.” At least, I don’t think we are! We don’t trade in our phones as soon as the next model is available. We’re still using a desktop and haven’t made the jump into buying a laptop/tablet. I think generally we’re content with waiting to see if it’s something we need or want, and then evaluating from there.
Of course there are exceptions to my categories, and it’ll depend on the situation. How about you? What do you not spend your money on?