most new years i get in a "let's get rid of this, we don't use it enough" sort of mood--usually as a result of getting lots of new stuff for christmas and wanting to start the new year... FRESH! not to mention, its also after our busiest time of year at work (which means the house stays a little messier) and i tend to have a little more time and want to get everything in order and back to "normal"...and the need to put away all the christmas decorations
i love it! its such a great feeling to get in this "mood" and to look for projects to organize and rearrange* and start out the year on a GREAT note!
*lee doesn't like the rearranging as much...
well, this year it seems to be a little more extreme...
i've sold things on craigslist
i've stayed on top of my cleaning that usually piles up (dishes and clothes)
i've donated things to goodwill
cleaned nershi's stuff
made lists for things that i can't seem to stop thinking about or ideas that i have for the house
organized the areas of the house where things get "tossed" or set down or left there because there's no good place for it to go
cleaned out the pantry of food we'll never eat (or things where there's one left in the box, etc...
sorted out my plastic storage containers and tupperware
cleaned out the freezer & fridge
given new "purpose" to the office upstairs (and cleaned out the junk that was piled up there)
trimmed some of the shrubs outside (yea, it was bit chilly)
...i could go on for days... but i'll spare you! :)
...and when i sit down for 5 minutes? i get bored and find something else to clean. or organize. or sell. or cook... and lee mumbles "oh me, oh my, here she goes again"...i'm borderline ADDICTED! haha
heck, i even try to "clean up" the bills... every year, lee and i evaluate what we're paying for certain services (cable, phone, etc...) and call to see if they're running promotions or if we can upgrade for the same thing we're already paying... or lower the bill for what we already have...
...if you don't do this, START NOW! you would be AMAZED at what sort of offers you'll get, just because you called!
don't believe me? let me give you an example... lee and i have our cable/phone/internet bundled... and yes, that one bill looks expensive, but its all in one... so, i decided to call them and see what promotions were running... welp, simply because i called, they've reduced my bill by $40 a month... yes, that's $480 a year. WOW. i was hoping for 10-15 bucks... or free HBO or something...
we're also doing the same thing at our bank... and have applied to save some on our mortgage... amounting to $600 a year...
...so, if you're counting, that's $1080 a year... that we wouldn't have because we simply didn't ask.
i mean really, what's the WORST that could happen for a few wasted minutes of "holding" on the computer... you hang up paying the same amount you're already paying, right? why not give 'em a call... you. never. know.
without going into a whole lot of detail, lee and i had set some financial goals for the year, and its been amazing how making a few phone calls and selling some useless junk (well, it was to us, anyway!) on craigslist what we've been able to do in just a few weeks!! its VERY exciting... if you thought retail therapy was fun... you should try SAVING THERAPY! its EVEN BETTER and WAY more rewarding! taking a few minutes every-so-often to really look at how you spend your money will really shock you (good or bad)... lee and i took it a step further this year with the goals we established (since eden's on her way, ya know!).
its been a blessing, an education, and a reminder when we pick up that dvd or new candle or see new shoes/clothes on clearance...whatever it is and ask "do we really need this?"
now, don't get me wrong, we still have fun and have money budgeted for things we enjoy but don't NEED... eating out on occasion, vacation, lee's races, concerts, etc... but it makes you think twice before buying so impulsively... lee and i have really challenged each other to make smarter decisions about our money... and its been great!
i'd say we've started out this year with a bang! and i love it!!