I think we can all agree that a splurge every now and then is really nice. What I find interesting is that my idea of a splurge has really, really changed over time.
Just a few years ago, I had the opportunity to live in the Caribbean on the island of Grenada for 3 years while my husband was in medical school down there. Living there taught me a lot about minimalism, being at peace without a lot of stuff, and being happy with the beauty and experiences around me.
However, I am human and a girly girl. I love a beautiful Kate Spade bag and a mani/pedi. I love to travel. I love sparkly, pretty things. However, I’ve learned over time that I have to choose my splurges in life. Like my friend Paula says, you can afford anything, just not everything.
Choose Your Splurges
These days, an amazing splurge is buying a bottle of $4 wine and having peace and quiet late at night to sit in the tub, read a magazine, and drink a glass of said bottle of wine.
I also love to travel or plan little side trips. This past weekend, my husband and I went to visit the oldest winery in America. It was a 50 minute drive, and it was so, so beautiful. The dinner was a little expensive, and we had to pay a babysitter to watch our twins, but it was very worth it to splurge and have a little time together.
Then, the next day, we drove the kids to NYC, found free street parking since it was a Sunday, and we walked around Central Park. The most expensive part of that trip was paying for the toll to drive over the bridge and of course buying a little fruit cup for the twins to split. Next time, I will bring more snacks for them and for us!
It’s All About Balance
Before I had kids, back when my husband and I were both working (and he was not a student) we had far more splurges than we do now. We’d go out to dinner several times a week, walk around the mall just for fun and buy clothes, and as someone who loves design and decor, I was always buying little things to decorate our house.
We went on more trips than we do now and my husband had a much nicer, newer car than he has now. However, I look back at that time with a bit more wisdom and wish we had chosen our splurges a bit more wisely. If we had, we’d surely have more in savings now and we wouldn’t have gotten into credit card debt and then back out of it.
There’s Nothing Wrong With a Splurge
That said, there’s nothing wrong with a splurge here or there as long as you can afford it. I think many times, personal finance bloggers give a vibe that if you like nice things, designer duds, or expensive experiences, there’s something wrong with you. I don’t think that way at all. In fact, I look forward to being able to afford more nice things and experiences in the future.
It’s just that right now my “big splurges” are really small bits of happiness like a piece of chocolate, a bottle of wine, and a dinner out. Maybe one day when we have paid off our student loan debt and are making far more money than we do now, we can travel more, give more, and choose splurges that we could only dream of now.
What do you splurge on?