Wednesday, March 27, 2013

fun money

Finances have been a mixed bag lately. Bunny and I have been working hard on getting on the same page and there have been a lot of very positive improvements to out budget. I'm loosening up a little to allow some extra expenses and he's tightening up his non-allowance expenses. We're getting on the same page, even with the frustrations and the setbacks and it feels good. It's a work in progress, and there are constantly new balls to juggle.

Watching Bunny figure out his allowance money is exciting. It's opened a lot of doors for him in some ways, but at the same time keeps our budget on an even keel with expenses. He's taken off on a run with his model cars and motorcycle hobby and a lot of the money is being socked away towards that lately. He's also talking about spending some on things for his bike (which is currently more toy than transportation). Even his annual men's camping weekend will be coming out of this portion of the budget.

My fun money is a little more in flux right now. It's kind of been piling up and I don't necessarily have anything I want to spend it on. Oh, I buy quilt supplies and fabrics from it when the need arises, and I buy a book every couple of weeks. There's also my fancy coffee habit, and I buy a fancy coffee at least once a week. (It's a terrible, luxurious indulgence and I love it and feel absolutely no guilt about it.) I've got a lot of fun money left over at the end of each pay period though, and I'm at a loss as to what to do with it.

I don't want to blow it all on a fancy purse or shoes (maybe because there's nothing that excites me there?) and all the practical things I could spend it on have been very clearly pointed out to me as budget expenses, not fun money. But why would I spend money from the rest of our budget on a haircut when I have spending money?

In Toronto it would have been a lot easier to make up my mind, but I don't want to be making excuses. I need to figure this out. Is there a class I want to take? Do I want to pay for a joint vacation on my own? Go to some shows in the city? Do I want to invest in some dividend paying stocks? (That idea really interests me, to be honest. The money is just sitting there and I could use it to make more money.) It's at the point where it's a large amount of money but not a huge amount of money. It's not quite enough for any of the big ideas but it's still big enough to need some thought.

What are your favourite splurges? What special expenses do you save your pennies for?


  1. What you could do is open a deposito account, a fixed account where you can put your money in for a year. This is very boring, but it doesn't have to be. I did the same thing but at a special bank, I don't know how to put it I'm sorry. I got a fixed intrestrate which was alright (not exeptional) But the money was used to support a project in africa, women starting small businesses there. So I got the safety from a bank account and well the feeling I did something great :)
    Ow and my splurges, I have a huge amount of clothing and shoes..


    1. That's a brilliant idea. I do try to do charitable giving throughout the year but it's really very jumbled and doesn't always go forward in reflecting my values as well as I'd like. I've heard about micro-loans like that before and will have to do some more research. :)

  2. All our savings tend to go to travel (so I would second the idea of paying joint vacation).
    Other than that the occasional film (we went yesterday to watch a documentary as part of the Films that matter festival) but we hadn't gone to the movies for ages (mostly we just download).
    I also spend fun money on books and baking supplies.
    And I totally get you on the fancy coffee, such a luxury. Specially as I have been trying to limit caffeine (so no more coffee / black tea at home, at least not everyday), those times when I do get a coffee when we are walking in the city or with a friend really feel like something special.
    It is difficult to balance the fun stuff... since like you have mentioned before it is all little quantities that add up. Even if I enjoy fashion and I tend to like expensive dresses (etc) I feel very guilty of actually buying the stuff so I just *look* at it and I almost never buy new clothes (when I do, it is after reflecting a lot and making sure I got a good deal.

    1. Joint vacation is pretty high on my list, but I know I need a little bit of an attitude check before I'm going to be comfortable paying for that. I still struggle a little bit with the money being "ours" at times and I don't want paying for vacation to turn into an issue. Luckily I still have some savings to do before I'm at the point of being able to pay for that which means time to work on my insides.

      The other splurge I'm considering is a new digital camera. I know I have an old one, somewhere, but it's not a great one and it's big and bulky and really, really old. It would be nice to not have to borrow when I finally get the quilt done, and maybe to share some cooking pictures as well.

    2. Oh yes camera is a great splurge. It was our main ( joint) christmas present and we are enjoying it so much. So much to learn.