Vanquishing My Debt

I'm 29 and trying to get a handle on my finances so that, one day, I can buy a home of my own. I've been reading personal finance blogs recently and decided to start one chronicling my own struggles and success (hopefully). I am lucky, considering the amounts of debt and tales of tragedy I've read about... but I am making some positive changes and moving in the right direction.

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Location: Los Angeles, CA

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Spending money to save money?

I was reading recently (and I think it's mostly common sense, too) that spending money to save yourself money in the long run is a smart thing to do. I.e., buying a lawnmower so you don't pay someone else to do it, or buying craft supplies to make Christmas gifts. One of my favourite blogs, Make Love Not Debt, even talked about ponying up for a gym membership to save on medical and health costs in the future. A few weeks ago, I bought a used bread machine at the thrift store for $9.99... but it'll save me money once I start using it and making products we usually purchase. I think we all probably agree that this kind of spending makes sense.

I just realized last week that I've spending money to save money... and not in the smart way. In one of my previous posts, I talked about how we go to a lot of free movie screenings. One of the benefits of living in L.A. is that you have the opportunity to attend events and happenings that don't occur in smaller, less metropolitan cities across the country. We love free movies because we're both movie buffs and this is a great way to see 1) films we would otherwise pay to see and 2) films we'd never pay to see, but we'll go because, hey, it's free, so why not?

The spending money issue lies in the fact that we usually go to these screenings right after work... no time to go home and eat dinner. So we usually end up spending the money we'd have paid to see the film on dinner, which I can mostly stomach. Dinner and a movie for 2 people for $10-20 isn't bad, comparatively. But it adds up fast... especially weeks when we see several movies. Last week we saw two films, which means we spent about $30-40 on dining out. That's basically been my weekly grocery budget lately!

And it took me, like 2 years to realize this?!

All you money-savvy people are rubbing off on me! Thank goodness! :)


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