Shopping Ban: November Financial Round-up

Photo by Fabian Blank

Well, November was.....challenging.

I'm learning that old habits die hard and that I really do need to figure out how to pay off my debt without putting myself in the financial dog house. I'm noticing I have a pattern of tossing a large sum of money at my debt but then not having enough leftover to purchase things that I need...or want if I'm being honest.

December will definitely be a time of focusing on being mindful of my purchases, finding ways to celebrate the holidays, treat the people I love and invest in my self-care without blowing away my savings. December might be the month of getting creative. But for now, here is the recap of November.


$100 - Consignment equestrian items that sold


$30 - Secret Santa gift for family Christmas
$45 - Zach's Christmas gift
$70 - Debt repayment




Percent of income saved: 0.5%
Percent of possessions purged: 0%
Percent of credit card debt paid off: 5%
Percent of confidence I can complete this challenge: 2%


As I mentioned in the intro of this blog, my habits are proving more difficult to change than I thought they would be (when will I learn my lesson?). More specifically, my habits of spending money on fast, convenient food rather than groceries and using my VISA on small purchases that I don't have the cash for but figure "ah, what harm can it do". As it turns out, $5 here or $3.50 there adds up.

I've also been struggling with purchasing things that aren't (or even are) on my approved shopping list because if I want something and I can afford it, I want to buy it immediately. On the flip side, I have a hard time prioritizing things that I need and then end up not being able to afford, like something as simple as refilling my laundry detergent at a bulk store instead of picking up a new one and having to throw away the plastic container.

The money I have leftover, or my "spending" money, doesn't seem to be enough to purchase the things I need to purchase which tells me that my financial priorities aren't in order—which also probably means that my life priorities aren't in order either.

Coming across extra cash flow this month has been tough. My go-to's like selling off horse blankets and riding equipment and clothing I don't use hasn't gotten me any bites, so I feel like my ability to minimize and my ability to bring in extra money has kind of ground to a halt. I also got some bad news about Christmas bonuses this year so the extra money I was counting on to help pay off debt and purchase Christmas gifts won't be available, which puts some extra strain on my wallet this season.

That said, however, I know that I haven't put as much effort into actually going through things and minimizing as I wanted to. November was busy for me and the next few months aren't going to be any slower so I need to figure out a better system for going through things.

On top of all that, Rozee's vet invoice came in and it was nearly $1000, so a large chunk of my emergency savings will be going to that.

Oh...and I also bought a trip to Thailand...and no, I didn't have the cash.

Yeesh, I've really let things slide this month. I think I've been stressing so much about my finances that it comes to a point where I say "screw it", which usually leads to me overspending. It's like a binge-purge cycle with my finances.

At the end of the day, I have to remember that these struggles are where the lessons are and at the very least, this experience is highlighting some changes that I need to make.

You can follow along with my shopping ban journey by clicking here to read more articles