Credit Card Habit

I have gone eight days without using my credit card. I’ve blogged about being clueless over family finances. On a regular basis I commit myself to getting over my disinterest in the financial state of the union.

This week I paid cash for all lunches and dinners out. I bought all groceries with cash.

The hardest part was when I stopped at Apthorp Pharmacy to restock my dwindling supply of the usual sunscreen/moisturizer/tint stuff that comes in a small tube. “$38!”

Paying with credit card, I would’ve whipped it out and thought nothing of it, but with cash, hmmmmmm? I hesitated to part with my two twenties. I didn’t buy it. “I’m sure you can find some old sunscreen/moisturizer around the apartment,” I told myself.

Monet's water lilies at the MoMA are so amazing! This image has nothing to do with this post, except that it makes me exceedingly happy to look at Monet's paintings. I took this pic the other night.

It’s always possible to find cheap alternatives.

Coming home from the East Village the other night at 10:30, I would’ve hopped in a cab. I have an unwritten rule not to take the subway after 10 pm. But the $2.25 subway fare seemed much more sensible than a $22.50 cab. And without kids at home (they’re still at camp), why rush?

Watching people on the subway late at night is an entertaining and cheap thrill! The subway ride takes longer. But hey, lose time, save money.

I decided to try  22 days without a credit card because I bought a journal/financial book that promises in 22 days you can change your financial habit. I thought you needed 66 days to change a habit. Whatever.

I had a huge credit card statement the other day — upwards of $5,000 — and there was not much of substance on it — a few orthodontia charges, automatic payments for cable and phone, trip to Chicago, my writer’s class – but no real big ticket items.

Partly I blog to hold myself responsible. So by admitting I have a problem with my cash flow and then blogging about it, I figure I can change it.

Just like when I admitted I wanted to lose 5 to 10 pounds? The pounds didn’t just drop off. Um, still waiting.

Blogging helps me turn my attention to ways I can do better and areas where I need to focus.

Money and weight. I know I’m not wildly out of control, I’m just not where I want to be.

6 thoughts on “Credit Card Habit

  1. Hmmm…good thoughts….both areas I’m not where I want to be either..not a writer or blogger..but I could journal my way thru this maybe…thanks…

    1. Thank YOU, Peggy. Plus I enjoyed chatting with you while making sandwiches! You’re awesome! And even though we’re not where we want to be, I’m happy where we are!

  2. Read this because of the Water Lilies! Have you been to the Orangerie since they reopened it? Absolutely breathtaking…
    Thanks for a glimpse…

  3. Also.. If you want to start getting your money issues together I recommend very highly the book “I Will Teach You To Be Rich” by Ramit Sethi I read it about this time last year and it was one of the most understandable ways to look at money. I actually bought my brother a copy for his high school graduation. Fixing things doesnt happen overnight however if you have a better understanding of how things work it is much easier. Just in one year I have been able to save a decent amount of money, while enjoying the job I do working freelance as a composer. Give it a read. Its not like reading some dry Suzy Orman book.

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