A Few More Things I’m Willing to Splurge On

posted by Andrea | 03/15/2012

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Over a year ago, I wrote about the 10 Things We Don’t Spend Money On and then followed it up with 10 Things I’m Willing to Splurge On. They are two of my more popular posts to date… and I LOVE reading the comments to learn what you are and are not willing to spend money on.

Well, over the past year, I’ve come up with a handful of other things I am most definitely willing to splurge on. Some are bigger splurges than others, but they are all completely worth it for me!!

1. Snow Plow Service

Dave and I decided to splurge on snowplow service this winter… and those of you living in West Michigan are probably laughing right now because we hardly got any snow!!

Since Dave already gets up at 5:30am to be to school on time, and since we knew our quality and quantity of sleep would be jeopardized this year, we figured it was worth the cost.

Well, it worked! Dave didn’t have to wake up… and neither did the snow plow company!

{it was fun for a year, but we’ve since sold this tractor}

2. Baby Carrots {and other fresh produce}

I know this is crazy, but I just hate peeling and cutting carrots… and since we eat a ton of carrots, I’ve decided that it’s worth the extra money to buy bags of pre-washed baby carrots :)

I’m sure many of you have also noticed the increasing price of groceries at your local stores. Produce seems to be extremely high lately — sometimes making up half our grocery bill! And while I’m always tempted to cut back on our fresh produce, I figure this is probably one thing I should be willing to splurge on.

3. iPhone

I’ve already professed my love for my newest electronic toy… and while I definitely don’t think iPhones or smart phones are for everyone; this little device has saved me so much time and helped me be so much more productive. It’s worth every penny!

 

4. Room Darkening Shades

During our home renovations this past summer, we gutted our master bedroom and the nursery {among other rooms}. Both rooms have 2 big windows that let in lots of light — which is great, except when we’re trying to sleep!

Since I absolutely LOVE the trim around our windows, I didn’t want to cover it up with curtains, however we still needed to block out the light. So we opted for cordless, cellular, room-darkening shades. They cost about $75 per window, but are custom cut to fit perfectly in each window and they block out every last ray of sunlight… which means we can sleep in on the weekends! And since sleep is at a premium now days, these shades are worth the splurge!

{you can hardly even see the shades when they’re all the way open!}

5. Frozen Pizza

We almost always have pizza on Sunday nights — it’s just “our thing”. We eat our big meal at lunch, and then have pizza and a salad or veggies for supper.

I used to make homemade pizza a lot; but then I Nora came along and I started buying frozen. I can usually get the really good self-rising supreme pizzas for about $3.00 — which is much cheaper than delivery pizza — and it’s worth the splurge since I now have at least one meal each week that I don’t need to think about. As a bonus, Dave has taken over the preparation and clean up of this meal!

6. Diapers/Wipes

I try to get good deals on everything I buy… especially baby things. And while I know cloth diapers would probably save us money in the long run, I just can’t imagine spending the time and energy to wash all those diapers every week.

Plus, due to coupons, rebates, and special sales, my mom and I can usually find baby wipes for free, and diapers for less than $4.00 per jumbo pack — which, in my opinion, is most definitely money well spent!

7. Date Nights

I’ll be honest, these don’t happen very often, but if Dave and I do get a chance to do something together, we take it. And while we most definitely don’t spend crazy amounts of money, we are more willing to spend money on date nights now than before Nora arrived.

Of course, I still use coupons though…

8. Education

I had a professor in college who always said, “If you stop learning, you stop living” and I honestly feel like that saying is true. Thankfully, both Dave and I like learning… and although Dave does most of his learning in a classroom {he just finished his Master’s Degree last summer}, I also like to “continue my education”.

I’ve taken a few online workshops for blogging and business, I’ve taken community ed classes for gardening and landscape design, we took baby/parenting classes this fall, and I’m always learning new tips and techniques for blogging, HTML coding, etc.

9. A New Mac

We’ve been talking about getting a new computer since October — and we really wanted a Mac. So this past weekend, when the screen went totally black on my 4-year-old laptop, we stopped by the Apple store and bought a Macbook Pro!

Since we had already done our research, we knew exactly which computer we wanted to buy… but parting with the money was still difficult. However, I feel I can justify spending money on a new computer since it’s one of the few business expenses I have.

{future blogger in training!}

10. A New Kitchen

As I mentioned a couple weeks ago, Dave and I are hoping to renovate our kitchen this summer. Originally we were planning to wait about 5 years, but since our refrigerator is barely hanging on and some of our other appliances are also “on the fritz”, we decided the renovation should probably happen sooner than later.

We will pay cash for the renovations… but believe me, it’s still a pretty big splurge!

UPDATE: the new kitchen is finished — go take a look :)

Kind of a crazy list — and it’s interesting how our priorities have shifted since I wrote my first post about splurging. Sometimes I feel bad splurging on things we don’t necessarily NEED, but then I remind myself that occasional splurges are one of my perks for all the scrimping and saving I do!

What are you willing to splurge on?

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22 comments

  1. Christine

    03/15/2012

    My husband and I have always had Macs since high school, so I don’t even think of it as a splurge any more. It’s just how we roll :)

    I do splurge on getting good shoes since I have back problems. I did find that you can get name brand shoes for waaaay cheaper at 6pm.com, so I get a good deal but it’s still a splurge for sure.

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  2. Tracy

    03/15/2012

    We just bought a house that has beautiful wood floors under the ugly shag carpet. We are capable of refinishing them ourselves but with 3 little kids it would be a faster process and a lot less stressful if we hire it done. So we are saving the cash to pay the professional!

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  3. Chris

    03/15/2012

    I am a huge cheapskate but I splurge on car washes (the kind you drive through and do your own vacuuming). I did change to regular carrots but I have found that I actually like the way they taste now better than the baby carrots.

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  4. Tammy Skipper (@Tammy_Skipper)

    03/15/2012

    I love to see how the list has changed and it made me aware of one important fact: our splurge list changes with the seasons of our lives. Right now I feel like we are spending a lot on education. We are buying books for my husband’s Master’s degree, paying for AP and co-credit classes for our high schoolers, paying for ebooks for me to learn more about blogging skills. When they were little, I would have eaten baked potatoes for a week if it meant one dinner out with my husband.

    I would love to know more about how you get diapers so inexpensively. While we are well beyond this stage, I have lots of friends here in that stage of life so getting them as gifts would be great. Thanks!

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  5. Kirsten

    03/15/2012

    I definitely splurge on my iPhone too! I absolutely love it and don’t know what I would do without it!

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  6. Kelekona

    03/15/2012

    We splurged on a second vehicle. Two adults could juggle around with one, but it’s harder on an unpredictable schedule. Since it is a motorized scooter, I can take off for stupid reasons on not burn gas so quickly.

    I also don’t buy very cheap shoes. I would rather be comfortable in sturdy and practical footwear that lasts several years, even shoes that need repairs every year, than have to shell out $20 every few months for shoes that don’t treat my feet well.

    Red meat is also a splurge. Chickens are cheap, but it’s possible to get sick of them.

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  7. Melissa Medendorp

    03/15/2012

    I think our best splurge was our new kitchen as well. We gutted our kitchen when my first daughter was only 7 months old. It was a 1970′s kitchen that was original to the house, so it definitely needed updated and we needed storage. We actually paid for the entire redo in cash and it was by far the best thing we ever did. Now that we had baby #2 10 months ago, can I say how much easier things were with her then they were with Melia. The renovation was hard to go through with no kitchen and a crawling baby, but it took 10 days because we hired it out. Again worth EVERY penny, so I agree fully with #10!

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  8. Beth

    03/15/2012

    Our splurges: iphone and internet from home (my husband and I both have access at work) has saved my sanity and productivity and getting rid of TV other than antenna has also helped productivity, hormone free animal products and organic fruits/veggies from the dirty dozen list, the occasional car wash for time saving, good shoes (I’m a physical therapist and I go to courses about footwear and associated physical pain/breakdown and the number of patients I see in a month where shoes are at least part of their physical pain – in the long run, your co-pays are more expensive!), good air filters for our heating/cooling system and the very occasional date night! :0.

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  9. Tshanina

    03/15/2012

    I splurge on a massage every few months! It’s a small piece of Heaven!

    You’re going to love your Mac. I got mine about a year ago and I won’t ever go back to a PC!

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  10. Raquel

    03/15/2012

    The Macbook Pro is awesome! Cute picture of your daughter by the way….

    I splurge for soft kleenix, house cleaning and butter ! When my kids were young, I also used disposable diapers…I tried cloth but gave in to convenience. Still feel a little guilty about it.

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  11. Jen

    03/15/2012

    I splurge for Tide and Downy!! I’ve tried EVERY other possible brand, made my own, tried to go all natural, etc. None of them work as well as good old Tide and Downy! Tide gets the dirt out and Downy makes them smell good! And I get LOTS of compliments on how good my clothes smell so it must work! ;-) Thankfully, I get both at our local warehouse store with coupons so that helps a lot!!

    I also splurge on Yankee Candles! The cheaper ones just don’t smell good! Noticing a pattern here! HAHA

    We are Mac people all the way! You will LOVE LOVE LOVE your new Mac! My husband always says “Once you go Mac, you never go back!’ Enjoy! :-)

    P.S. I just love your blog. We lived in GR for 10 of the happiest years of my life. I miss it terribly and would come back in less than a heartbeat if given the chance! (I’m coming for a quick visit in April!) Our first daughter was born at St. Mary’s even! And I love reading about familiar places! Keep up the great work!

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  12. Thrifty Military Mommy

    03/15/2012

    Yep, I’d say these are all good things to splurge on. I’m with you on the pealing of carrots thing too. I hate doing it.

    I’m so glad we buy our produce locally. It’s better for the environment, it’s healthier for us, and it saves us from the prices rising so we can afford to buy the organic stuff.

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  13. Roxanne

    03/15/2012

    I love your comment at the end where you re-iterate that all the scrimping and saving we do is what justifies the occasional splurge. It’s good to be frugal, but not so much a miser!

    I devote most of my grocery budget (and sometimes a little extra) to fresh produce, humane beef and poultry and quality baking supplies. I figure the meals I make for myself in turn save me money I would otherwise be spending on meals out and about.

    Also- maybe if you deduct the new Mac purchase as a “business expense” the next time you file taxes, you’ll get the money back that you paid for it this year :-)

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  14. Emily

    03/15/2012

    We just splurged and purchased 1/2 a cow (grass fed, hormone free)! Even though it was a lot of money up front, it will save us in the long run and so important to have quality meat available in our deep freezer. :) I also agree with the other commenters about shoes. I recently splurged on some new, supportivr sandals (orthaheel, recommended by my father in law who is a podiatrist in GR) and boy do my feet, knees and back feel so much better! We also spend money on snow removal as my husband travels a ton and isn’t always home to plow. Gotta love those west michigan winters! :)

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  15. Molly

    03/15/2012

    We splurge on quality dog food! We have two large dogs and they eat way less of the good quality dog food, than the cheap stuff. They also go to the bathroom less, are less hungry between meals, have super shiny coats and teeth, and they never need to go to the vet (except for check-ups!) I think it’s definitely worth the price in the long run.

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  16. Laurel

    03/15/2012

    I splurge on good shoes, professional haircoloring, as much insurance (life and liability) as is possible and practical (if you can call that splurging!), professional haircuts for my kids, good quality coffee to brew at home, football tickets to Michigan football games to see our kids in the marching band. I, like someone else said, spend TONS of money on college for our kids (2 at Michigan right now with 2 more still in school at home) as well as lots of money on orthodontics for 4 kids so they can all have beautiful smiles :) Lastly, we splurged last year and had pretty much the whole house painted inside and out as well as a fence that is quite large. My husband and I could have spent the entire summer doing it all, but it was far more important for us to have time with our kids at this point so it was money well spent. We have the very best and most reasonable painter if anyone near Lansing needs one-he’s worth his weight in gold. I think something equally interesting would be to find out how everyone has cut back in the past couple of years. There are so many things we used to pay someone to do that we now do ourselves to save money. That’s another story, however :)

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  17. Tara

    03/15/2012

    We don’t do snowplow service or have a new kitchen, but we splurge on most of the same things that you do.

    I didn’t think we could find the money for monthly date nights, but we’ve started going out with a couple (our best friends, really), and I wouldn’t give up that time for anything. Between getting a sitter and paying for a dinner out, it gets pricey, but it’s good for our marriage and for us as individual people. It’s definitely, definitely money well spent.

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  18. Deana

    03/15/2012

    Although it was a very hard sell for my husband, my splurge is a house cleaner every two weeks. We both work full-time plus and the family time gained is 100 times more valuable than the cost of the cleaning. We also buy name brand diapers. Tried the generic brands and they are horrible.

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  19. Madelyn

    03/15/2012

    Recently I went to a lecture at my church on Marriage/Family and the presenter said he and his wife spend a couple hundred dollars a month on dates. He said they could not think of anything better to spend money on than something to strengthen their relationship. They also “do without” many things like a fancy home/new car to save for family vacations instead. We can’t take those worldly things with us after we pass on, but we do take our family/relationships/memories so they choose to “invest” in those. Interesting….eh?

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  20. Ashli

    03/18/2012

    We splurge on natural and organic food. Our kids are learning to eat healthier and we feel better about what they eat. In the long run, while it is a little more expensive, it isn’t unmanageable, and our health is worth every penny!

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  21. Lisa

    03/21/2012

    Our splurges: anything to make my homeschool run more smoothly. The occasional pedicure, dates with hubby (but paid for out of items I sell on ebay, so it doesn’t come out of our regular budget) very good kitchen tools (Bosch mixer, etc…since feeding a family of 7 efficiently is top priority)

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  22. Jenny C.

    09/20/2012

    Hi Andrea. My hubby & I are looking into replacing the 20 year old windows in our townhouse with vinyl replacement windows. Do you have any knowledge/experince with windows that you’d be willing to share? So far the prices have been crazy high (for a townhouse that’s on the inside of a row of homes so we don’t even have any “sides” to our home just the front & back), plus the pushy not-so-nice salesmen have put a damper on things! Just thought in your home improvements you might have dealt with windows at some point. I always appreciate & respect all the info. you share on your blog. Thanks so much, Jenny C.

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