budget shaming: things i bought instead of a bike

INDIANAPOLIS — We downsized from two cars to one in February. It saves us roughly $300 a month, and we plan to put that toward various financial goals, but for March, we decided to put it toward a commuter bike for me.

That, unfortunately, is not what happened. And it’s entirely my fault.

Well, there were a few other things that contributed to some budget rearranging. A few unexpected vet trips for Marvin, a slew of annual expenses, as well. That was a lot of extra money.

Alas, I spent money on some frivolous things instead of saving money for my bike, even though almost everything on this list was on a phenomenal sale. Regardless, I’ve decided to embarrass myself into preventing the same mistakes in the future.

Things I Bought Instead of a Bike

crappy shoes {$39.95}

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In short (because the story isn’t worth telling): I missed an email, ended up prepaying for shoes and had to use the credit. So I got these. I haven’t worn them yet, but they seem somewhat comfy.

a shirt with an elephant made of elephants {$12}

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I mean, it’s pretty cool. And it was 12 bucks. But I didn’t really need it.

a shirt about a bike {$12}

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Also awesome. Also cheap. Also not necessary.

a shirt about the Internet {$12}

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Because I truly love it. (And I’m happy I got it before it went out of stock. Still.)

nice shoes {$59.90}

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Coincidentally, these destroyed my feet after I walked 0.6 miles in them. Sigh. I’ve taken to the Internet to find tricks for breaking them in, because these little jerks better end up being awesome shoes.

honeycrisp apples {$4/lb = ~$16}

Unnecessary. Delicious. Their tastiness makes them the most expensive apples out there, and I buy apples organic, so…

NatureBox {$10}

Potentially a very good decision. We’ve always struggled to have good snacks to pack for work lunches, and these have really helped that situation. I’m glad we tried it (for a discount), but did we have to try it this month? Nope.

cycling jacket {$30}

I didn’t have one, partially because they’re very expensive. It’s spring. There was a sale. I had 15% off — I bought.

race fuel {$15}

Gotta get my electrolytes replaced, duh.

necklace {$24}

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Asymmetrical necklaces. So pretty. So impractical. This was not on sale, but it was part of an order of necessary stuff, and the necklace allowed us to get free shipping. That’s never really a good argument — paying more to get something for free — but I did it anyway. Dumb.

GRAND TOTAL:  about $230

Considering I wasn’t planning on spending much on a bike — I was thinking of browsing Craigslist for a used one with a bit of character — that’s pretty significant. I didn’t need any of these things. Sure, they fit in the budget, but I let my priorities slip away over some great sales (and they really were great sales, for the record). The good news: Since I thought to put this post together two weeks ago, I’ve thought twice and decided not to make frivolous purchases. Maybe I’ll get that bike in April.

[screenshots from Fab.com, JustFab.com, RueLaLa.com]

Indiana resident. Illinois native. DePauw University alumna. Reader, writer, craft addict, wannabe world traveler and ever-improving triathlete.

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