FIRE.168 “Christmas Card”

I’m not a “real” spender.  I’m not really any kind of “shopper”…well except deal of the day sites.  

I am mostly frugal but will buy some things I want from time to time.  It just usually takes me time to think of/realize what I want.  Then I figure out the best model/features that fit my needs and try and find or wait for a good price.

Xmas List

A few years ago we decided not to limit the things we want to just xmas gifts.  Instead, we decided to keep an “xmas list” that we could purchase and enjoy throughout the year.  I love buying when things are off-peak or on sale.  E.g.  Exercise equipment in summer rather than in January.

Anything List

Just in the past week, I decided to create an “Anything/Everything List.”  It’s my dream list of anything/everything.  During covid lockdowns, I made a list of things to do post-covid.  Surprisingly, I even did some of those activities after covid calmed down, hopefully, more to follow.

I had created the item list on my computer and visited the list multiple times throughout the past week to add my purchasing dreams.  ANYTHING I could think of.  Get this, the only item I could think to add was a self-driving car (3rd generation) maybe a Rav4 type.  (I want lots of bugs worked out in gen 1 &2.)

It’s been days and I still have not added any other purchases.  Not a single one.  However, I did copy some of my post-covid/travel locations onto the Anything List so it wouldn’t look so empty.

I need to dream more, or bigger, or better…

Mall Outing

Today I decided I would get my MoJo on and go to the mall.  I had a starting item to pursue and thought it would be nice to go at off-peak hours at 11am on a Wednesday.

I thought I’d look for some new jeans since I assumed the selection should be overwhelming in a full mall as compared to what just happens to be available at some random thrift store on the day I visit.

As part of my attempt at MoJo, I told my wife that I was taking the “christmas card” with me to the mall.  She gave me her normal, what-are-you-talking-about-now-crazy-man look. 

I explained that in that our Visa card is now being called our Christmas card.  A Visa card to use for our xmas list year-round.

Mall Results

I’m proud(?) to say that I went to the mall for almost 2 hours 11a-1p today (We-Day).  I went solo because Kathy didn’t want to go with me since I’m not good at shopping.  I tend to cruise right through the mall.  There’s no doodling at all.

I left the mall after looking at hundreds of items with a total outflow of only $10.80, tax included.  It was actually a nice and quiet experience with 2000+ steps but it was just too much of a consumering environment.

I did buy some jeans (seriously, stretch jeans for men was a great share from women’s clothing design!).  I could not find anything else that I was willing to purchase.  I must have entered 12 stores and stood in the doorway of 20 others without entering.

Lessons Learned

If you want to do something or enjoy an item, and have saved enough money over time, then reward yourself.  You will never be younger or healthier (possibly) than you are today.  Seize the day.

*** Nothing in this article is to be construed as financial advice.  I am not a financial planner, nor do I pretend to be.  You should always consult your own professional when seeking advice. This post is not a piece of literary mastery, just a random thought I had.

4 thoughts on “FIRE.168 “Christmas Card”

  1. Dan Diego

    You’re calling your Visa card your year-round Christmas card?! I love it!
    I might do something like that. I’ll see which cards can be customized to look like shiny gift wrap.

    Last year I tried a similar experiment. I didn’t last two hours in the mall, though. I felt overwhelmed! It’s the same for me on Amazon – it just doesn’t work for me. Mostly, there isn’t anything that looks interesting.

    And coincidentally, I also ended up buying jeans. But, I took a step-by-step approach. I got burned a couple of years ago. I tried buying some online from Levi’s and learned the hard way that they don’t take returns. (How is anyone supposed to know the right size for unwashed jeans unless you wash and wear them!?) Recently, I attempted this again and this time managed to find the exact style and material that worked for me. (No stretch jeans for me – and by the way it’s important to look carefully on the Levi’s site to know ones are stretch and which aren’t).

    Once I confirmed the size and style I wanted, I bought a dozen pairs in assorted colors. Yay!

    So, that’s my big splurge for now.

    Well, okay, there was something else. I got myself a new triathlon wetsuit…

    Next on my radar: socks 😉

    1. Kevin Post author

      Only very conscious spenders can relate to our thoughts, right? It’s funny, I went to the Levi’s store and they had 50% off the second pair…$80 for the first $40 for the second. I kind of walked out that store backwards.

      I also was looking at socks, but didn’t think I needed any right now and couldn’t bring myself to spend the $6-10 at Marshalls. It’s funny how spending-brain functionality works.

    1. Kevin Post author

      I’m glad you found some happiness and humor in this thought. Sometimes, usually, I just think I’m strange. That just may be a fact, but life is great.


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