I've stopped shopping.
This is huge. I am a shopper. I love to shop. LOVE IT. I even worked for several years as a mystery shopper, being paid to shop, and it was the greatest job ever. My absolute favorite present is a gift card because it's two gifts in one--the gift of whatever I buy with it, and the gift of shopping. The thrill of the hunt, finding a bargain, the rush of bringing home something new and pretty--it's pretty much my favorite hobby.
But after Christmas and my birthday, after I actually had difficulty spending the money and gift cards I got as gifts, after we ran out of hangers in our closet, I realized that . . . I'm done. I just cannot justify buying one more thing, not clothes or purses or shoes or tights or workout gear . . . I don't need any more. So I've sworn off shopping for 2011.
(Okay, so I haven't STOPPED shopping; I've just hung it up for a year. But H&M's online store goes live in 2012 and let's face it: there is no way on earth I can say no to that.)
The first month was pretty easy. I unsubscribed from all the store email lists so I wouldn't be tempted by daily announcements of Big Sales. When I went to Target I avoided the women's clothing section altogether. I enjoyed wearing my new things from the big shopping spree I'd had right after Christmas. I shopped my own closet, putting together new combinations from things I hadn't worn in a while. But now, spring is on the way and I can't avoid seeing articles about Christian Siriano's new line at Target, or how flared jeans are in for spring, or that Nordstrom Rack just opened an online store. I do have three gift cards from my birthday that I'm saving for a rainy day, but let's face it: those won't last long in my hot little hands. Certainly not until December!
So I'm taking it one day at a time. Instead of taking advantage of The Limited's 40% off sale (they have a circle skirt like I've been wanting for months! on sale!) I'm posting here. Instead of cruising Old Navy's website to see if I can pick up some t-shirts for summer (great for layering!) I'm reading blogs about how to combine necklaces and bracelets to make new, chunky pieces. It'll get more difficult as the year goes on--turns out, it's a hard habit to break--but I've got to stop buying. It's no good for my budget, for my overstuffed closet, or for the example that I'm trying to set for my daughters.
Although, Number One is only half a shoe size away from mine. If she grows just a tiny bit, that would justify more shoes that we can SHARE! That would be a real bargain . . . right?