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8/25/08

Free Money!

Bear with me, this will have a bigger point...
: )
I finally have the mod geometric hair cut I want. And we had the best time. The owner, Mary Lou, and stylist, Corrinne, hovered over my bangs, getting rid of fringe to form them into a blunt look. (Ok in this picture I had played with my hair so it's all messed up. In real life it looks cool.)

I go to Mary Lou's for many reasons:
They give fantastic cuts at a great price (my hair cut today plus trimming my daughter's bangs was... $27!), I like supporting another small business owner, they're super nice, work hard, and they're right down the street.

As Mary Lou guided the angle, we spoke about her trips to London to study at Vidal Sassoon. She finished her tale with, "And then we'd return, it was such a great experience, and we'd start saving for the next year's trip!"

Exactly! Her trip was *paid for* by the time it arrived, and she then pursued her next year's goal throughout the year by careful saving- what a reward at the end of a year!

We spoke about coffee, which she had recently cut back on:
"I stopped when it started costing more than $3- when it was $2 and change, I'd go in twice a day, spending $5 daily. But once it went over $5, I realized what a waste it was!"

She took it a step further. Now, when she doesn't have coffee, she pays herself. So every day she puts $5 in a pot. And suddenly, when it comes time to visit a relative in North Carolina, that gas is paid for. When she wants to purchase an unexpected item, that money is there.

Is there something we all can cut back on?
I immediately think of easy things from the grocery store or home that are regular "treats"- what if, every time I skipped over that bottle of wine, that gourmet cheese, that coffee, I threw it into a jar, used later for something bigger?
And paid for?

As we journey through our own house kit process, I take similar steps. Over the past year each time I had a bonus, I put that money directly towards the house.

Ironically, while achieving our goal of less debt, it made us much more frugal as that money did not enter our household. So, while working diligently to reduce costs we will incur as we build, we have never been more "poor", but oh, so rich in determinedly moving towards fiscally responsible, debt-free freedom.

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