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Never At The Expense of Others

January 10th, 2007 at 04:33 am

My Guy hasnít tried to subvert my Challenge, but he isnít into it. Heís naturally very frugal; frugal enough to be able to work part time by choice. But he does kind of see My Challenge as a bit dorky.

Tomorrow is his birthday. I told him Iíd take him out to dinner anywhere he wanted to go, and he picked sushi (which I expected). It was surprising to hear him say today, after getting a (very sweet) gift of cash from his step-dad, that he could use the money for dinner tomorrow. I replied, ďNope, you get to treat yourself with that money. Iím taking you out to dinner tomorrow.Ē His response: ďWhat about the Challenge?Ē Jaw dropping.

I explained, ďNo, no, Iím taking you out. Iíve made room in my budget.Ē We always take each other out to dinner on our birthdays. And we pretty much always choose sushi, because we love it. Sushi is not the cheapest. But I have organized my budget so that I can fit it in.

Oddly enough, I think what got him thinking positively about My Challenge, in Month Eleven, is how nice his Christmas and (early) birthday presents were. On the frugal side, I got him many, many books using trade credit at the bookstore. I got him a Chť Guevara shirt in Croatia; he has a thing for them. I got an oval shaped desk tray thing, so that he could use the laptop in bed, and that was $1.99 at the thrift store and has been a big hit. I also gave him a 1 gig jump drive, using part money and part gift cards I cashed in survey points for. And I got him a gift certificate at The Gap, also by cashing out survey site points. For the birthday, I got him an MP3 player, an iRiver Clix, which is nicer than he expected. I explained that My Challenge didnít mean no spending, it meant conscious spending, and that I felt the mp3 player was a good value for a great reason and I fit it in my budget.

So I think he is looking upon My Challenge with a new respect, perhaps. In the past months I've sometimes declined to go out to eat or get fast food or take out, and I think that mildly irritated him. Now he might realize more that I wasnít enjoying getting fast food almost alway. I have migraines, Iím chubby, I have issues with large chains; it was easy for me to want to cut out fast food or going out to eat from laziness as opposed to true desire. So he did experience a small amount of deprivation, I suppose, because I wouldnít join in some meals. So the true beauty of My Challenge was unable to shine through and impress him with the fantastic geekness of it all. But the mp3 player has spoken.

(I still say heck, he should go out to eat with the guys, or his sister, or himself if he wants it-Iím not preventing him! Come March 1st I am not going to be interested in a lot of eating out. Iím trying to eat right and work out, and I have to do that way past February! Thank goodness splurging on sushi is relatively healthy.)

The morals of the story: Remain generous while being frugal, and, be patient with men.

There may be more morals here. Feel free to be my Aesop.

In other news, I got a couple pairs of pants as hand-me-downs today. I would almost totally love them, except they are from a person who used to be a few sizes larger than me, and these are now too big for her. Great for her, and a reminder to me to keep focused on getting healthier. Iíve walked to work once and used my exercise bike 3 times this week, starting Sunday. Iíve eaten breakfast everyday, and packed good lunches, and for the most part eaten right for dinner. Working on developing healthy habits just as Iíve developed good frugal habits.


7 Responses to “Never At The Expense of Others”

  1. LdyFaile Says:

    Yay that is soo awesome! Mmm sushi, I'm going out tonight for a friend's birthday to her favorite sushi place and on Wednesdays most plates of sushi are $1.25 each. I can't wait!

  2. fern Says:

    Moral: A frugal Xmas can seem just as bountiful as a non-frual Xmas if you know what you're doing.

    Very resourceful on the gift giving.

  3. threebeansalad Says:

    My original comment was deleted during the tech problems, but the the gist was that you exemplify that frugal does not equal cheap!

  4. Broken Arrow Says:

    Hehe. I love sushi. It's such a terrible affliction, to love something that costs SO MUCH!

    Although I am not on the same type of challenge, in the end, we may be on the same path so to speak, since my own life is about creating a simple, fulfilling life without relying on too much meaningless material excess. That also means to live on as little as is comfortably possible.

    I think you summed it up quite well with the words, "Conscious spending".

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