What Was The Last “Substantial” Thing You Talked Yourself Out Of Buying?


Got a reader request asking if we can talk about “substantial things” we’ve talked ourselves out of buying recently, and in an effort to not disappoint I thought we’d make her wish come true today :)

Anything come to mind over there at first thought?

I got something for ya, but first – let’s see what she wrote:

Hey J$$$$,

Here’s a topic suggestion. “What is the last “substantial” thing you talked yourself out of buying?”…..

So we went shopping this weekend. Our favorite kind: antiquing. We moved a few months ago, so it’s time to check out our new digs. The first shop on our list ended up being an open field. Either they moved, never existed or I wrote down the wrong address (or the $20 GPS my husband bought from a co-worker is a total dud! GRRRRR), but up the road we stumbled upon another shop.

Lordy lordy a huge shop chock full of goodies & best of all, NO JUNK! Decent prices. No bargains but mostly fair prices. We spent 2 hours marveling at all the unique items.

My husband spent 99% of the time deciding what old train stuff to buy. Me? I made a list & measured numerous items. Oh my, wouldn’t that $600 entertainment cabinet looked fabulous in the corner of our living room? $800 for 2 antique silk embroideries would fill up that big empty wall in the dining room. That $125 lantern would be a nice addition to the other 2 sitting on top of a built in by the fireplace & it lights up too! The one of a kind $150 South American stitchery would make a great conversation piece in our foyer. Those 2 1955 $80 lithographs would add a great punch of color to that hallway wall. $200 for an oil painting of a little girl golfing (we live in big golf community). Now wouldn’t that make the powder room come alive? Perfect small size too.

Okay, so I can’t afford to buy them all but perhaps I can squeeze just one of these treasures into our budget? Oh but, which one will it be? Decisions, decisions, decisions!

I couldn’t think straight. Too many wonderful beauties to choose from but hubby quickly bought 3 old train items in their original 1950’s boxes. They were overpriced but he made an acceptable $135 offer.

I decided to fight the urge & spent $4 on 5 huge super juicy tomatoes! BLT’s on the menu tomorrow!

We shopped all day & I finally succumbed to spending $8 on 4 large cotton boll stems (the cheapest I’ve seen them in the past is $9 per stem) because my mother commented that the 2 empty vases on our mantle would look better with something in them.

So we got home & after thinking about it, I am SO glad & proud of myself for talking myself out of buying anything “substantial”. I didn’t cave into my human emotions to buy stuff we really don’t need!

Hubby was happy buying old train stuff. He’s not treated himself to anything in ages. Imagine my surprise when he resold ALL the train stuff the next day to 2 local guys for a profit! His profit paid for the entire day including what I bought, our lunch & gas!

Hubby said we need to do this more often. Hmmm as long as we can remind ourselves of “wants” vs “needs”.

Thanx again to you for your great blog! I really enjoy reading it & it’s always very inspiring,


Well done, Margaret! As a reformed antique’er myself (except in the department of coins – nom nom nom), I can attest to how hard it is to say NO to those things. Especially right there in the moment!

I racked my brain to see what things I’ve recently turned down despite my initial eagerness, and while at first nothing came to mind, I was soon slapped in the face by a stack of private school pamphlets staring back at me for our soon-to-be kindergartener.

That’s right – I said private school for kindergarteners.

I have never (EVER) even once fathomed the idea of sending my kids to a private school (no less one at 5 years old), however, a funny thing happens when everyone around you starts doing something – you think it’s normal and wonder if you should do it too!

(Remember how we moved to a more upper class community last Summer? Turns out the pressures are real!)

At first we brushed it off, but then one thing led to another and before we knew it we were taking a tour and imagining “what if.” The gawking at the $8,000 year tuition soon turned into gawking at all the perks you get for this $8,000 (clean rooms, state of the art technology, the safety and security of Fort Knox!), and an hour later we were back at home crunching the numbers and considering it.

Now, a few weeks later we were over it and touring the local – highly rated – public school where we eventually enrolled him in (still just as nice and clean and safe!), but for a hot minute there I began wondering how I was going to explain all this on my blog ;) Not that it’s necessarily bad or wrong or anything – I obviously get the appeal! – but when we revisited the basics again I knew deep down it just wasn’t for us. And my son couldn’t tell the difference between them.

Though I’m not gonna lie – if we were set for life? This post may have had a different ending, haha… Particularly as all my kids’ friends are going there which is like The Joneses on top of The Joneses trying to reel you in! How do you tell your kids they have to be separated from their best friends??

But that’s a post for the daddy bloggers out there ;)

Getting back to the point, do know you are very much not alone in this, Margaret. For you guys it’s antiques and trains, and for us it’s currently school and kid stuff. And I imagine for everyone reading this it’s 1,001 other things that equally seems exciting in the moment.

The takeaway is that you realized where your priorities landed in the end, and you were able to find a way to treat yourself without going overboard. A feat not always easily done.

So for that, I salute you dear friend.

Now, I turn the mic over to my other dear friends! What was the last significant thing that YOU turned down in exchange for keeping your cold hard cash? What finally got you to walk away from them in the end?

Share below and let’s show Margaret a grand ol’ time today… And if someone can please paint her a nice picture of a girl playing golf too, I think we’ll call it a win ;)

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  1. FullTimeFinance May 10, 2017 at 5:23 AM

    Good job on resisting private school JMoney. We just enrolled our to be kindergartener ina top ranked Charter school, also avoiding private school.

    That is not our most recent avoidance though. The big one for us was summer camps for this year. We got very close to spending quite a bit of money on summer campers for our oldest. Ultimately he is only going to two, one of which is free and one is 200 dollars. But some of the ones we looked at were like 500 a week.

    1. Jodi Renaud May 10, 2017 at 1:27 PM

      Well, everything is relative I guess… The only thing that comes to mind is a sweatshirt by esprit/opening ceremony that cost $110. Heck, I already have two esprit sweatshirts that I just got in Paris and believe me, I did not pay $110. $40 maybe..still want it though…that French allure…

    2. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:08 AM

      Summer camps – yes!! So fun for them but so expensive! Interestingly enough we only booked two for our eldest this Summer too, $150/week and free :)

  2. Mustard Seed Money May 10, 2017 at 6:12 AM

    My wife and I walked through a house last weekend that would have required that we take on a mortgage. Since we have been mortgage free since 2012 it’s been really nice not making that monthly payment. However, we were prepared to take on another mortgage if the house was right. Well it definitely wasn’t right and I’m really happy that we’re not taking on debt :)

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:09 AM

      Good for you all! I literally don’t know *anyone* who’s mortgage free in the real world – only my smart friends online :)

  3. The Tepid Tamale May 10, 2017 at 6:29 AM

    Braces! I did it! At first I could find no alternative to the $5,000+ cost of braces for my daughter. But after a bunch of research, and then a bunch of waiting, about 2.5 years, she is accepted into a program for full braces for $600!

    Now … to repeat that 4 more times. Then I’ll take a week off and figure out weddings …..

    It’s always good to have a challenge!
    – The Tepid Tamale

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:11 AM

      Wowwww nicely done.

  4. Band of Savers May 10, 2017 at 7:12 AM

    My wife has been trying to talk me into sending our 5 year old to private school for a year now. Blows my mind why we would ever spend $10k a year on kindergarten. That’s half of what I spent on my undergraduate degree! We paid a premium on our house because of the good school district we would be in and it blows my mind that I have to convince her that we can’t afford private school for the boys.

    The biggest thing I’ve had to talk myself out of recently is a pretty awesome lightweight, waterproof, backpacking hammock for $225.

  5. Chelsea @ Mama Fish Saves May 10, 2017 at 7:30 AM

    A new car! That would have been hard to explain… I’ll give it a go though.

    My husband used to drive our small, entry level SUV while I got to drive my dream car (a Subaru Outback! Haha). But when our son was born, he took over the Outback because it was much better in the snow and felt safer as he stays home with the little dude. Come bonus season this year, he was looking at a Honda Pilot and some other 3 row SUVs, and we were talking about needing 3 rows with kids and dogs down the line. We even talked to some salesmen! Luckily, we came to our senses, bought a Thule case for the Subaru’s roof for longer trips, and I’m just fine driving our less fancy SUV for now.

  6. Apathy Ends May 10, 2017 at 7:40 AM

    we don’t end up in situations where we talk ourselves out of purchases very often, usually stay out of stores (Amazon :) )

    The last thing was opting for a cheaper fishing rod than the one I really wanted. Couldn’t justify the extra $100 (still bought high quality, but not the top-of-the-line)

  7. MK May 10, 2017 at 7:50 AM

    I like to sew. My mom started teaching me when I was eight years old. I’m not a professional by any means but I do ok. I wanted to improve my skills & found a 4-day class. The class was $750. I needed a hotel since it was too far away to drive every morning & night. At 3 nights, it would be ~$450. Then came the supply list – very specific – of what you needed to bring. Since I don’t have those “specifics”, I figured at least $100 to get them. Don’t forget about gas & food! Wow, all of a sudden, I’m looking at over $1,300 for this class. It didn’t look attractive anymore so I passed.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:16 AM

      Oh man, was hoping you found some sneaky way to still attend! Paying for skills is much better than for junk, haha…

  8. Dave May 10, 2017 at 7:56 AM

    I enjoy kayak fishing. I have a nice kayak that I paid $900 for. It was worth it because I use it most weekends and it will last a long time. I was in a sporting good store and was looking at a $3500 fishing kayak with a pedal drive system. I thought about it for a few minutes. My frugal side won out. I even stopped reading about it online :).

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:16 AM

      That last part, haha…

  9. The Luxe Strategist May 10, 2017 at 8:03 AM

    Engagement ring. Total non-emotional purchase for me. Fiancé and I looked together because I’m choosy af. No matter which ring I tried on, nothing seemed worth the asking price. Absolutely no regrets.

    1. Chelsea @ Mama Fish Saves May 10, 2017 at 3:15 PM

      I wish we had done this. My husband bought me a very nice ring. My friend’s family is in the diamond business and she helped him pick out the stone, setting and everything (luckily talked him down from a larger stone, blegh!). It was very sweet when he proposed, but even my mom said, “You don’t wear rings. Are you even going to wear it?” Long story short, I wore it for about a year, then got a $65 band from Etsy and my engagement and wedding rings sit in the safe. SUCH A WASTE.

      1. The Luxe Strategist May 12, 2017 at 2:16 PM

        Thanks for relating! Sometimes I feel like a total weirdo walking around engaged with no ring. But yeah, this is basically it: “You don’t wear rings. Are you even going to wear it?” I don’t wear jewelry hardly ever so it wasn’t practical for me personally. Maybe you can sell yours?

        1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:22 AM

          Ooooh yeah – sell it and then take a NICE trip around the world or something :) Unless you’re going to save for your daughter if you have one? I only wear my wedding ring maybe once every two weeks… For some reason it bothers me when I type? (which is all we do w/ blogging, haha…)

  10. Lisa May 10, 2017 at 8:04 AM

    My weakness is Disney wallets and purses. I saw a super cute Dooney & Burke wallet on Sunday that I “needed”. It was $175 and I told myself it would be an early birthday present so totally justified. But I knew there was no money for it in my budget and any birthday money I will get was already earmarked for my real birthday present – Tokyo Disney in November! So I walked away from it. It was close though. I have to remind myself sometimes – experiences, not things.

    1. Tracyl5 May 10, 2017 at 9:30 PM

      Tokyo Disney is awesome!!! Way better birthday present to yourself and you’ll want spending money for all the souvenirs they have! I went last year, and really want to go back again. Disney Sea is the most amazing theme park I’ve ever seen, literally jaw-dropping.

      1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:23 AM

        FUN!!!! Had no idea there was one in Tokyo??

  11. budgetOnaStick May 10, 2017 at 8:07 AM

    i had the keys in my hand to drive to the Tesla store to pre-order a model 3 last year. $35k base price. I had been bouncy back and forth in my mind to do it or not for over a month. I finally decided that it wasn’t worth putting my family back into debt for a stupid car. Funny part is I actually have a post i plan for next week on this exact story!

    1. Lily @ The Frugal Gene May 10, 2017 at 11:12 AM

      Ooh, I was sitting on the bus just the other day, staring out the window wondering who were the people lining up outside Tesla to pre order a 100K S or X or something like that.

      I would like to read that when it’s posted.

      1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:24 AM

        I have a feeling you’ll get it, just later when cheaper and/or used :) Carl from 1500 Days is out picking up his NSX finally after yearrrrrrs of wanting and thinking about it! Don’t talk to him if you’re trying to stay convinced not to get it, haha…

  12. Kris May 10, 2017 at 8:18 AM

    Well, I’ve been house hunting and a house came up literally a 3 minute walk from my new job. It was in my price range and I went with my realtor to look at it. We walked through, and I was internally squealing, “It’s perfect’, then my agent asked the owners, “What’s up with the cracks?” turns out it has foundation issues. Ugh. $5000-10000 worth of repairs, which they knew about but never had done. Not worth it for me b/c VA would never okay the loan. I walked away.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:26 AM


  13. SL May 10, 2017 at 8:37 AM

    I just bought a house (no, no that is not the substantial I turned down – I downsized for 6BR, 3BA to 3BR, 2BA, and from 2 story to 1 story – yay knees!) and it was a completely non-updated 1968, mid century house, so I am doing some cosmetic changes, including new appliances. I have to tell you, going through the ovens, cooktops and microwaves — even the hoods! was an amazing waffle in “ooo I want!” I have been pretty set on a five-burner cooktop, that was upper middle range, and when I was looking at ovens, a suggested cooktop pair came up (4 burner) I hadn’t considered. there were two models of the four burner… That one extra burner I would probably never use? $800, and the difference in the two burner models is a power burner with 18K btu and 15K btu respectively for another $120 difference. All three well-rated, all three very nice looking. I went the the lowest of the three once I pulled myself out of “It’s my money I can play if I want” to “I am playing but is something I won’t use worth the pretty?” I went through the other items and did the same thing. I knocked down the price of the total kitchen appliances by almost $2,000.

    That is money that can be better spent elsewhere.


    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:28 AM

      Even more impressive is downsizing from 6 bedrooms like that!! Well done!

  14. Chris @ Flipping A Dollar May 10, 2017 at 9:12 AM

    Oh man. We’re doing a kitchen remodel.

    It started as “lets get new appliances, put in a new set of cabinets on the half wall, and get quartz countertops”, but when we started to put in the appliances there were other issues. There was rot underneath the sink and next to the dishwasher, the cabinet above the fridge was going to have to be cut down, and then there was the installation/matching of the new cabinets.

    in the end, we decided to go and do new cabinets. But then the thought was – can we remove the pantry to open up the room even more? Can we get rid of the bulkhead?

    So after all that, we’re not going to do the pantry. We’re going to try to get the bulkhead removed (it’s oppressively large).

    So we’re in some middle ground now – none of this is cheap, but on top of it all, we decided not to move a few months ago. Instead, we’re using the down payment money to upgrade where we live, and we’re not going to a complete overhaul, just about 2/3’s of one.

    Whew! That was a lot and in the end we’re still spending a lot of money. But it’s less than it could have been.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:30 AM

      I was about to say – i’m glad you decided to stay put before doing those renos! So many people (like me!) upgrade stuff right before they put it on the market and don’t even get to enjoy it :(

  15. Mrs. Groovy May 10, 2017 at 9:16 AM

    New TVs. Since prices on smart TVs came down so much I was on the verge of buying a new Vizio for around $200 at Walmart. Then I thought really? We’re two people with 4 flat screen TVs that all work perfectly fine. We don’t even have cable anymore. Plus a new smart TV would give me incentive to join Amazon Prime – which might not be a bad thing. But it hasn’t really crossed my mind to join so why start this all up.

    1. Mike B. May 10, 2017 at 11:44 AM

      Nice one; we bought our 42″ flat-screen from some couple off craigslist for $200. Works perfectly great, and this was 4+ years ago. Probably one of the best craigslist finds that I’ve had. Anything “new” should be resisted, which includes “new-to-you” things too, as in the antiques above.

  16. Bailey @ Becoming Bailey May 10, 2017 at 9:23 AM

    Like Chelsea from Mama Fish Saves, mine is also a new car! My car has been having lots of trouble lately, and the last time it ended up in the shop (I had to get towed!) I started pricing new cars online. I feel like I’ve been putting so much money into the car for it to keep messing up! I even went so far as to call a dealership for quotes and get pre-approval from my credit union for a loan. Thankfully, my husband’s employer just switched him to a work position that will require him to drive a company car, so hubby kindly pointed out we can make our current vehicles work for a while longer (especially with his truck not being driven so much!) Sheesh, how crazy I was for a hot minute there!

  17. Dads Dollars Debts May 10, 2017 at 9:51 AM

    There were 2 Nintendo Switch’s (the new console) at Target yesterday when I went to return something. Now these things have been sold out everywhere and I wanted to buy one to play Zelda….I stared and stared. Then I walked away. No Nintendo for me currently. I probably would only play it a few times and that is $300 bucks!

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:34 AM

      Zelda!!! One of my favorites back in the day!

  18. Becky May 10, 2017 at 10:00 AM

    I am moving to a new apartment soon, so the temptation to buy all sorts of stuff (adding up to “substantial”) is real! The complex is putting in new carpet that my cats are sure to ruin in no time, so I’ve been considering investing in some natural fiber indoor/outdoor area rugs… So I went to Target and found some that I like. But at this point in my financial life, I should probably just stick to paying down/off my credit card before I go spending a few hundred dollars on floor coverings. And bookshelves (and books to fill them), and new lamps, and and and… You get the picture. Since it’s an apartment, which is temporary, I’ve decided to just stick with what I’ve got while paying off the credit card debt, then funneling that money into a down payment & my own home decorating fund. I figure, when I finally have a place that is actually mine, I can spend the money to paint and cover the floors however I like, but while I’m still renting, the money is probably better spent (or saved) elsewhere.
    Good call on the private school! For kindergarten it seems so frivolous. Maybe for high school, to get them into some really great colleges, might be worth it. But I went to public school for all of my K-12 education, and ended up with a Bachelor’s and JD. So while not at some fancy Ivies, I still got a damn good education.
    Stay strong everyone, we’ve got this!

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:36 AM

      Target is the devil for your wallet, haha…

  19. Ms. Montana May 10, 2017 at 10:15 AM

    I almost helped buy my little sister a motorcycle last summer. Now, for the life of me, can’t remember any good reason for it. Except that she is adorable, and awesome and my little sister, and has the biggest grin. And I’m a softy for people I love. I think she needed $1500? Maybe $2000? I was very close to writing that check!

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:37 AM

      I wish my heart was as big as yours :) You’re always going OUT OF YOUR WAY to want to help people! I feel like I have to be slapped in my face a few times to finally realize there’s an opportunity staring right at me to do Good, haha…

  20. Owen @ PlanEasy May 10, 2017 at 10:20 AM

    When you said “clean rooms” for some reason I thought of the clean rooms used for building microchips and I thought “That’s was pretty advanced for a 5 year old kindergarten class, but cool!!!” but then quickly realized you meant cleanliness. Duh.

    Your comment about being in a more upper-class neighborhood is really interesting. We just moved and our new home is in an established neighborhood with smaller post war homes (~1000sg ft). One of the surprising perks was the complete lack of peer-pressure that you get in new subdivisions.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:38 AM

      Not sure about the microchips, but my son was sold on the school once he learned of a Computer Lab :) “I want to type all day long like dad does!!” haha…

  21. A Blinkin May 10, 2017 at 10:21 AM

    Watches are my guilty pleasure. I have 11 in my collection, yet I still have to talk myself out of buying a new one for $3-8k every month. Instead, I pay down the principal on our mortgage and remind myself I don’t need it.

  22. Mrs. BITA May 10, 2017 at 10:28 AM

    A house. A friend is moving to CO and selling is house. His house is only about 6 miles from the town that houses both my company and Mr. BITA’s (our current place is 15ish miles away. In Bay Area traffic that makes for a very significant difference in commute time) right next to a park. The house is $300k more expensive than ours and 400 sq feet smaller. Yes, you read that right. Luckily after sleeping on it we came to our senses.

  23. The Savvy Couple May 10, 2017 at 10:30 AM

    A car we did not need. I was looking for cars on craigslist for my wife, her van started to go downhill. I found a car I have been looking for for a while now a Hyundai Sonata in Black. Granted my 2005 Toyota Camry was working just fine.

    The person selling the car had it for WAY under KBB value. I was thinking I could buy it and resell it and make a quick $1,500-$2,000.

    We went and looked at the car twice. Thankfully the second time with Brittany there we found some stuff on the car that we did not like. (Oil was very low, stains in the seats, beat up exterior).

    Glad we talked ourselves out of that mess. Would not have been worth the headache.

    Continuing on the story. We actually ended up buying my sisters Sante Fee and sold our van. Including all fee’s and taxes in NYS we made $50 on the deal! Nothing like upgrading your car and making money.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:41 AM


  24. Miss Mazuma May 10, 2017 at 10:47 AM

    Well, I’m famous for going “shopping”, filling my cart, trying on clothes, and leaving the cart in a random aisle before walking out of the store. Yes, I know this is cruel to the kind workers in Target (if I’m still in the clothes section I put them back) but I can’t help myself!! I have a rule that if I didn’t know that it existed and was needed 5 minutes before I picked it up then why do I feel I need it now?? It takes about 30 minutes to talk myself off the ledge and when I do I hightail it out of there so the clothes don’t chase me down.

    My other guilty pleasure is real estate which is so much easier to talk myself out of now that I have been broken by the ordeal. 7 years ago, if I could get a loan I got the property. Bad habit! Now I pretend I bought it and think of all the things I need to do to fix it (I only go for fixer uppers) and so far that has helped to keep me away from the closing table. :)

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:42 AM

      Haha….. can’t say I’ve heard of that shopping cart trick, but I can surely understand it! :)

  25. Brian May 10, 2017 at 11:39 AM

    $8,000 for private kindergarten would still be cheaper than what I pay for daycare for one kid. That being said, I am glad I live in one of the top school districts in my state.

    I talked myself out of getting a new to me car. Almost every year around this time I get the itch for a new to me car. I even went a test drove the one I wanted, but I was able to walk away and if I can make it out of May, I’ll be good for another year with the car I have.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:45 AM

      Oh, yes, we’ve spent THOUSANDS on daycare over the years… Enough to buy a couple of luxury cars probably. But that also helped us with our decision to not choose the private school too – FINALLY BABYSITTERS FOR FREE!! Haha…

  26. Mrs. Picky Pincher May 10, 2017 at 11:43 AM

    Oooh, this is a tough one. For me, I think it would be going to grad school. I had the chance to do a program abroad for marketing, but I turned it down, and I’m glad I did. I was able to earn more money in the real world and realized a Master’s isn’t even necessary for my field!

  27. Ms. Frugal Asian Finance May 10, 2017 at 11:45 AM

    I talked myself out of buying an expensive dress (~200) just to look fancy. I feel guilty even thinking about it @_@.

  28. Joe May 10, 2017 at 12:11 PM

    Our kid is in a public school and we are mostly happy. There were some challenges, but you might as well learn to face them early.
    As for the last substantial thing I talked myself out of buying? Probably a new laptop. A new computer would be nice because the one I use is getting old. It slows down sometime, but it still works so I’m living with it for now. Maybe next Black Friday…

  29. Richard May 10, 2017 at 12:19 PM

    A new Truck.

    I go through this at least once a year. Old truck is showing its age.There is an electrical issue somewhere, but it runs. We don’t depend on it for long trips. Its a second vehicle for weeks when I am away for work using the newer Jeep, or for Home Depot trips, dump runs etc. But end of year sales always get me looking. I known the best 3 dealers for pricing with nin 250 miles of my house. This year it was a truck with a MSRP of $54 k listed for $38 K what a bargain! Crunched the numbers and it still adds two years to the estimated debt free date. That’s the final review for any major purchase. Will it cause a delay in paying off the house? If yes then its walk away, or drag the spouse away if needed. :-)

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:46 AM

      Haha…. smart man.

  30. Jax May 10, 2017 at 12:24 PM

    Mr Beach Life and I realized that we had a ton of Southwest points burning a whole in our pockets. We looked at the flight map and got excited about half a dozen locations to visit for a long weekend. It seemed like we were heavily leaning toward New Orleans and then I looked up what hotels/Airbnbs would cost. $500-$700 (obviously we can do better, but that was the initial look.) Suddenly our “free” trip was costing a ton. Then we thought about visiting locales where we could maybe stay with friends. In the end we decided to hold onto the miles and start saving for an international trip next summer, instead of a fall weekend get away.

  31. Brian May 10, 2017 at 12:55 PM

    We just turned down comic con tickets. It’s something we’ve done the last few years in in New York, but have other priorities this fall. Between tickets, parking, food etc for the days saved around $500. There’s a show every year so we’ll catch one another time.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:47 AM

      For a second there I thought you said FinCon! ;)

  32. Martinus May 10, 2017 at 1:06 PM

    Hey J Money:

    You resisting the private school pitch was a story right out of The Millionaire Next Door. The story about Mary and Lamar.

    I recently talked myself out of buying a £230,000 share in a portfolio of apartments in London, UK. They would have entitled me to a month’s usage each year, and a full equity interest upon sale, but ……

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:48 AM

      Oooh interesting! Just all me Lamar $$$ going forward! ;)

  33. Mr. SSC May 10, 2017 at 2:15 PM

    We chose our neighborhood based on the fact that we wouldn’t ahve to send our kid to private school. I have to say, $8k/yr is cheap even for all the competition in Houston. Our friends are paying close to $1k/mo per kid for grade school/elementary. No thanks! It will be nice when our youngest hits kindergarten in another year and we can say goodbye to daycare/preschool payments for good!

    I’m a sucker for musical instruments and the last substantial purchase(s) I talked myself out of was actually two. First, I once again convinced myself it wouldn’t be easy to buy a sitar and make anything but noise with it, even with my knowledge and abilities at playing the banjo. So that saved me ~$500, although i may get one in the future, because you never know…

    The second came within a week or so of that and it was a tenor guitar. Before 3 weeks ago, I didn’t even know they existed. Someone mentioned I should look into them because they’re for banjo players to be able to transition to guitar easier. A few youtube videos later and I loved the sound and melodies you could play on them. Then I was shopping online before I realized, “I didn’t even know these existed 3 weeks ago. Why do I need one?! I barely have tme to play banjo and I already know how to play it well!” so I saved myself another $300 by resisting that urge.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 6:55 AM

      Oh man, now i wanna hear you play it! ;)

  34. Michelle Schroeder-Gardner May 10, 2017 at 2:16 PM

    For me, the last biggest thing is a nice mountain bike. I’m sure I’ll make the splurge some day soon, but for right now I’m fine with just using my current bike on the easy trails. I just need to find the right bike – stores just don’t cater to women and I can’t wait for them to ship it since I live in an RV.

  35. WannabeRetiree May 10, 2017 at 4:02 PM

    Nice topic J. This is a good way to pat ourselves on the back every once in a while. Here is my most recent story of can remember. When we went on a family vacation to Europe in March, we went to the island of murano in italy, which is famous for glasswork. I geek out on original art and like the idea of collecting it but most things are out of my frugal budget. Anyway, I see a piece of blown glass made in the shape of an octopus and aquarium setting. I loved it, my wife loved it, and my kids thought it was cool but of course don’t have a vested interest. We stared at it, contemplated owning it, got the car salesman treatment, promising an absolutely rock bottom price of $2000. I told the guy I need to think about it. That if I felt like I needed it, or would be back. He grabs my arm and says, this is not a piece that is bought because you need it. It was art. I tried explaining what I meant, but it didn’t matter, I had already made up my mind. I was in Europe for the memories with my family not to accumulate more stuff. As the day went on, my wife and I knew we could afford it but that it was not going to help with our ultimate goal and we felt at peace with not owning it.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 7:02 AM

      “this is not a piece that is bought because you need it. It was art. ” – hah! smooth!

      If it were $200 I feel like it would have been yours in a heart beat – but $2,000?? that’s a spicy meatball! (said in an Italian voice)

  36. Tonya May 10, 2017 at 9:20 PM

    Good choice on forgoing private school. The number one indicator of your child’s academic success is not the school they attend. The number indicator of academic success for a kid is parent involvement. I also don’t care about Ivy League schools. When my attorney was writing my will and trust and my accountant was doing my taxes, I never once asked them where they went to college. If I ever required surgery, it would not occur to me to ask where they went to medical school. The point is they went and they are certified or licensed to do what they are doing.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 7:03 AM

      Well I’ll definitely be involved! Perhaps *too much* as I’m sure I’ll get grief for as they get older – hah.

  37. Tracyl5 May 10, 2017 at 9:43 PM

    I had looked and researched and finally settled on a $120 daypack with a hydration reservoir, even put it in my cart… Ugh, I want to hike more, but I almost never go! I thought maybe having this really cool backpack would make me go. But I’ve decided that if I start hiking more, then I can buy it for my birthday or Christmas at the end of the year. We’ll see!

  38. Catseye May 10, 2017 at 11:35 PM

    I found a small recliner on sale a couple of years ago, was going to put it on a credit card. When they told me the delivery charge was $89, I almost choked! Tried to talk myself into it, but I was having none of it. Found a really cool occasional chair at the store I was working at last year and bought it at clearance price while stacking my employee discount on it. I am soooo glad I waited.

  39. Melanie May 11, 2017 at 1:38 AM

    Kitchen remodel. My kitchen was created circa 1975, with cabinets that are particle board and plastic drawers. The floor is brick vinyl that has lost all its finish. It’s awful. I got a Heloc to remodel… And my 22 year old son wouldn’t tolerate the idea. I couldn’t talk to him about it, so it ruined the excitement. This isn’t right, he kept saying. I couldn’t imagine saving enough ever to do it. Then you can’t do it, he said. Dumb kids.

    So I worked hard at the budget with the plan to eventually save all the money I earn renting his old bedroom on Airbnb :)… A little debt should be paid off soon and then I’ll be saving for the kitchen. And it’ll be awesome. So I guess this is really my kid’s victory.

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 7:06 AM

      Oh $hit – yeah it is!! You raised a fine one right there – where’s his $$ blog?? :)

  40. Mike Collins May 11, 2017 at 11:27 AM

    A beer fridge. I’m a big craft beer guy and I saw a really nice beer fridge that would look great in our kitchen, but it was $400 so I decided to pass. Maybe someday.

  41. Ashley D May 11, 2017 at 1:19 PM

    I can’t think of anything recently, but the biggest one ever was a townhouse about a year ago!

    I had toured many with a realtor, put in an offer, offer accepted, then once I started getting all of the financing papers showing real numbers and how little I’d have in my bank account afterwards,I backed out. (Fortunately it all happened so fast I hadn’t put down any earnest money yet! haha)

    This would have been my first home purchase (first debt ever). I still look regularly because HGTV teaches me homeownership is fun, but I’m much more realistic in my emotional readiness for buying a house now.

  42. Paul May 11, 2017 at 3:31 PM

    Yeah Dude I looked into it once, but the place near me is $22K for kindergarten and progressively up to $30K through high school……..once I saw that I vomited a little then decided that public school in the #1 state and #1 county for public schools is more than good enough. Multiple that times 4 kids and that private school can kiss my ass, I have goals for my life that would be crushed. I didn’t even pay $22k for the entirety of my college… much less just for one year.

  43. Duncan's Dividends May 11, 2017 at 4:44 PM

    A couple years ago I talked myself out of buying a new vehicle. I drove an 04 Maxima and I was moving to Phoenix so I thought about selling it and getting a new one down here. No rust belt rust damage. I decided against it and got it down to Phoenix only to have the ECM go out, replaced it and then it never accelerated right again. Finally there were so many other little things that started to pop up I had to break down and get a new vehicle. Ironically if I had sold it and then bought a new to me car I would have actually spent about $3000 less. Sometimes talking oneself out of something ends poorly. Usually well though :)

  44. Revanche @ A Gai Shan Life May 12, 2017 at 5:30 PM

    We got our stack of private school pamphlets for kindergarten in the mail when JuggerBaby was born! $26,000 a year. PER YEAR, J!

    We considered a $1.2M house because It Was Amazing. We even put in an offer on it but I think we both knew that was bananapants because we didn’t offer nearly enough to accidentally get it. There were a few reasons that it would have been a horrible idea other than the price tag but that mortgage and insurance alone was pretty bad. It’s just … it was so well done and you should have seen their amazing garage. I’d have taken up working on cars to work in that garage. :D

    1. J. Money May 15, 2017 at 7:08 AM

      Haha…. okay, all of this makes me feel much better about stuff, thank you :) For YOU to get so tempted like that is something!

  45. Clint Burgess June 1, 2017 at 8:53 PM

    It was my birthday last week, so buying something worth a few hundred bucks was justifiable. I just signed up to run a marathon with my in-laws, and an Apple Watch sounded pretty good. I did need something to track my running distance and not carry a giant iPhone while I run.

    In the end, I settled on an old Garmin 15 Forerunner for $85. Pretty popular in 2014, so it’s old, but it fit all my needs. I would never wear it in public (it looks like it’s from the 90’s), but I don’t need to look good running and I really don’t need my text messages being sent to my wrist.

    So, a substantial purchase ($400) avoided in favor of a more reasonable birthday gift for $85.

    1. J. Money June 6, 2017 at 6:41 PM

      HAH! Well done.