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Sunday, 12 August 2012

De-clutter: Material & Financial

For a few months now I have been de-cluttering our house of material items that we either don't use or just don't need anymore.  I felt I was on such a roll and feeling great about it all but then I realised an area that needed SERIOUS de-cluttering had been overlooked!  Our finances! We have just been living, very freely actually way too freely!  A very easy trap to get into if one is not careful! So began the de-cluttering of finances- changing insurance companies, cancelling memberships that weren't necessary anymore and just generally clearing out items we really don't need.

I have always just spent money without really looking at the big picture.  What was the problem, kids were happy, we were doing things we enjoyed so what is the harm?  The harm was that we were living in the moment not reality!  We have a beautiful home, new car, clean and nice clothes and food this is all we need to be happy. I was so consumed by material and "doing" things that I lost focus on what was really important.  This isn't a post about never buying anything nice because some people have no food!  Just because you go on holiday or buy something nice isn't bad or wrong but doing this all the time can lead to problems!  I would rather be able to live with what we have and not stress about money than live with all these "things" but stress every night about money!

You know what we did this weekend?  We cleaned out our garage of all the things we no longer need, use or want!  Oh my gosh you should see how much we have to sell.  I will be on eBay all morning.  But it is the same feeling you get when you de-clutter your office or room, being able to breathe again!  I am yet to go through the inside of the house and find the items we no longer need or use but once that is done I will feel much more content.  Miss P's birthday is coming up and I have 4 lay-bys on with presents- RIDICULOUS!  I love buying things for the kids but honestly they do not need that many presents at a birthday or Christmas!  So I cancelled them too, we will be giving her 3 presents (3 things she has been asking for constantly and really wants) and a birthday party, so i think she is still a very lucky girl!  The choices we make about money and material things really does influence our children- the other morning I said to Miss P "we won't be having a jumping castle at your party, I am sorry but it is just too much money".  Do you know what her response was?  "That's OK mum, can we play other games?"  Honestly, this coming from an almost 4 year old!  

We now have a budget printed, with absolutely everything written down on it showing us everything we have to pay monthly.  We are going to stick to this and every cent earn over budget will be going straight onto the debts we have.  Normally we just spend it on something meaningless but we need to start thinking smart and putting it all away.  The extra $5 here and there may seem like nothing at the time but added up can pay something off quicker which will leave you debt free sooner.  So I was very quiet on the blog last week as I was struggling to deal with the stress and also spending all my time finding ways to cut back and also stay on track. I came to terms with something last week, I realised that if we lost everything material tomorrow (not that its even close to that but my mind wandered that way) it wouldn't bother me, OK I would be sad and feel bad but having our clothes, possessions, each other we would just dust off get up and start again. My husband, my kids, my family would all still be there no one can break us.  That may sound cliche but its the truth and it took this slump for me to finally realise that.  It doesn't stop me stressing about money or stop me trying to find ways to cut back it just puts things into perspective for me.

So now that you know why I was quiet!  I am back and hope to bring you lots of things that are helping us with finances and with a party only weeks away there will be lots of party posts I am sure.

Kate xxx


  1. Hi Kate, this is all so true. Going through this tough little time with Mr B's health at the moment (still no answers) makes you realise that family and friends are the only thing that really matter and that we can all make do with less of the 'material' stuff. Some times it is hard to put in to perspective, I think that we are all guilty of that xx

  2. Love this post Hun :) I am all for budgets and decluttering so a post about both of them? Awesome! Chrissie xx

  3. Sounds like you're making some wise choices, good for you! :) We are working on the money thing, and let me say I was shocked just how much money we spend $1 here, $3 there, it's insane :(