Monday, May 25, 2009

Thrift Store Nirvana

I have been saving all my receipts in an envelope for the last two weeks so that I can start to get an idea of what we actually spend and where. This is not the first time I have attempted to do this, however, it is the first time I actually have a plan (sort of) of what to do with the information. For the last few months we have been scheduling Money Mondays once a month so we can talk about where we are going and what we might like to do with our money. This has not been a simple process and I'll admit one or both of us has been guilty of postponing Money Monday to Tuesday, or maybe Wednesday or Thursday.... (Aw, can't we do it next week?) Anyhow, it's a process, and I am trying to take small steps. My teensy tiny step this month is to set some reasonable financial goals, five of them to be precise (besides vacation money, yep, got it we want a vacation, no, not just to see my Mum, or yours. Yes, we could have gone to the Dominican for that, I know...) agree upon them,(ha!) and remove the fear.(double ha!) That's all I have to say about that, for now... *sigh*.

Time to send my boy out to face the big wide world. Well, twice a week, anyhow. This will mean creativity in the packaged lunch department, as well as organizing the sock and underwear situation. "Go look in the dryer," is probably no longer going to cut it. He already has a cooler bag and a reusable drink box. I am going to have to get some cool kid cook books or something. The other thing we did was to buy pretty much all of our family's summer wardrobe. This is a good thing because it gets very hot here in the summer and one must have cool clothing. We had a few things, now we should be set.

Fortunately, my favourite clothing store, Value Village, had a huge 50% off sale! I went early in the day to scope it out. I hadn't stopped by the ATM yet, so all I had was a pittance of change in my pocket. I'm trying to use cash, it's a little more concrete for me. I'm cheap, so actually prying the dollars from my fist is a little more difficult than imaginary numbers on a screen. Those imaginary numbers are the tricky ones. I still managed to score two cute T-shirts for my boy, one red with sharks, one yellow with a cool antique car motif, for $2.63. The store was packed with bargain hunters, and we were hungry for lunch, so I vowed to return later with renewed vigor. I did my best Arnie impression and we went home. We did go back once the man got off work. I can pick out clothes for him and he is usually satisfied with my choices, but for once he felt the urge to look for himself. Actually, he wasn't sure I had scoured the boy's shorts thoroughly enough, and by golly he was right; he managed to find things I hadn't noticed. The racks were continually restocked during the day, so yay for going back twice. Our total for the three of us, including my earlier foray, was $43.58. Not bad for seven shirts, six pairs of shorts and a vest. I thought about posting a photo of the clothes, but just look at any photo of us. For example, in the picture above the shirts we are wearing came off the clearance rack at Walmart. I think I paid $4 each, NWT. The other cool thing was the coupon booklet given out with each purchase. We ended up with two booklets, which I am certain to put to good use, so double yay. (What's with the double 'ha's and 'yay's in this post?)

Sunday was spent at the beach. We packed a cooler and drove to the provincial park which is less that ten minutes from our home. I know, I am lucky. We spent $11 on picnic snacks and the rest we brought from home. We played frisbee and laid on the beach for hours. SO relaxing :) Yes, those are our feet. No, we are not photographers.

My question to other thrift store shoppers is : Does it matter to you what cause the thrift store supports, or do you strictly thrift for the deal/thrill of the hunt/money saving? Most of the places that I go have what I consider to be fairly noble causes, but there is one I don't agree with. Trouble is, I know they have fantastic deals in there, they advertise them all the time and I am dying to go in and browse. I won't state what the cause is here, I don't care to start a controversy today about who believes what, what is and is not right, blah blah nauseum. It's one of those one side-or-the-other type of issues.
Ask me tomorrow, I may surprise you with a fresh controversy, but for today, I will stick to the mundane subject at hand. Should I go in and have a peek at their wares? So far I haven't been able to do it, something is holding me back...what if I want to buy something? Surely my frugal nature would override my haughty ideals. Does my fifty cents matter towards supporting their cause? If I were in a state of need, would I have the luxury of a lofty moral position? How far do you go to be frugal, yet maintain your morals?


Listen to Lena! said...

Sigh... unfortunately for me, my frugal nature always tends to override my haughty ideals :( I say stay away and resist the temptation!

hiptobeme said...

You are right. I think I will make sure my money goes elsewhere, deal or no deal! Frugality and social conciousness sometimes overlap though, I find...