Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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unclescrooge
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by unclescrooge » Sat May 23, 2020 3:36 pm

jebmke wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:27 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:03 pm
Kids are 3 and 5.
Surprised they like ghost pepper chips.
LOL, no those are for me. I figured if I was going to eat chips I might as well eat the ones I like.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Sandtrap » Sat May 23, 2020 3:40 pm

I am going to blame 15 pounds of weight gain on the Covid-19 issue.

And the ongoing forum thread: “What have you baked lately”😳

Either spend on new clothes or lose weight😬

So there.😉

j🌺
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Sandtrap
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Sandtrap » Sat May 23, 2020 3:44 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:36 pm
jebmke wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:27 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:03 pm
Kids are 3 and 5.
Surprised they like ghost pepper chips.
LOL, no those are for me. I figured if I was going to eat chips I might as well eat the ones I like.
The trick is to find foods and goodies that the kids don’t like. Otherwise, you’ll never get so much as a bite of it.

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anakinskywalker
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by anakinskywalker » Sat May 23, 2020 3:45 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 2:36 pm
anakinskywalker wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 11:21 am
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
Did you see any ghosts or start listening to religious music?

Anakin
Thankfully not. However, I did get Disney plus and just finished all 9 start wars movies.
:-)

Sorry couldn't help it. The idea of Uncle "Scrooge" talking about "out of control spending" is just too funny :-)

Anakin

anakinskywalker
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by anakinskywalker » Sat May 23, 2020 3:47 pm

And this was right after I saw "Wolfgang Pauli" in another thread postulating what I think can only be called the "Muni Exclusion Principle" :-)

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alpenglow
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by alpenglow » Sat May 23, 2020 3:50 pm

We were in a bit of a wine rut so we decided to explore/return to other styles/regions of wine just before Covid-19 started. There are a lot of wineries offering deals and we've been "taking advantage" of the opportunity. Probably just random timing because normally we don't spend money on much of anything. Of course, then we need to try the new wine. Between the baking and the beverages, there has been some weight gain. Whatever the case (pun?), the wine rack is full so no more wine ordering. For now. :beer

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unclescrooge
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by unclescrooge » Sat May 23, 2020 3:51 pm

FeesR-BullNotBullish wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:30 pm
We are putting off some home improvements due to the uncertainty of our employment situation. We've been spending more on groceries and less on eating out. I enjoy being outside, so I am spending more on gardening. I'm indulging baking. Overall I let my diet slip. I'm trying to combat that by buying a bounty of veggies and challenging myself to eat them before they go bad. Boundaries also help. I only eat in the kitchen and the dining room. Oh and in front of the pantry :oops: But never on the couch or in bed.

I'll take a devil's advocate view regarding your post. Are you being too hard on yourself? How does your normal level of self discipline compare to others? Sometimes we hold ourselves to unrealistically high standards that only make stress worse in a time like this. It's ok to give yourself permission to be less than perfect yet it's paramount to be aware of your behaviors so you can take note of what you'd like to change.

Sometimes it's nice to spend on things like landscaping, furniture, and art. These kind of expenditures can be immensely enjoyable as long as you're financially ok. As far as the drinking, it's not the point of the forum to tell you if this is bad or terrible. But quantities matter. Going from three drinks on the weekend to seven drinks through the week is different than throwing back a case of beer each week.
Being an optimizer by nature, I'm very critical of many things I do. If something is worth doing, it's worth doing well. Luckily, this doesn't extend to every aspect of my life, but as I grow older it definitely seems to be expanding in scope. However

Financially, these one time expenditures aren't going to hurt our long term plans. Maybe the overwhelming sense of boredom was driving some of these purchases. I definitely was not planning on spending five thousand dollars to replace a tree this year.

And the painting was an indulgence but it looks phenomenal in our living room and makes both the wife and myself happy.

Regarding the drinking, it has indeed gone from 3 drinks on the weekend to 1 or 2 drinks every night. However, 2 drinks a night is the official guideline for alcoholism. A fact that most of my friends and co-workers were surprised to learn, and a few suggested that it doesn't apply to the current environment.
:mrgreen:

Regardless, just trying to get a handle on things before they spin out of control.

Elysium
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Elysium » Sat May 23, 2020 3:51 pm

Spending is down. Health is normal. Kids are enjoying snacks, and they keep tabs on it, so no sneaking in the night to eat from the cookie jar. Home food is coming along good. Everyone is more relaxed and happier. Not what I expected in the beginning.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by unclescrooge » Sat May 23, 2020 3:57 pm

anakinskywalker wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:45 pm

Sorry couldn't help it. The idea of Uncle "Scrooge" talking about "out of control spending" is just too funny :-)

Anakin
I abandoned my frugal ways when I decided to have kids. Those two ideas are incompatible.

The amount I spend on daycare for each kid is more than my first mortgage.

From there, it's a slippery slope.

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alpenglow
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by alpenglow » Sat May 23, 2020 3:59 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:51 pm
Regarding the drinking, it has indeed gone from 3 drinks on the weekend to 1 or 2 drinks every night. However, 2 drinks a night is the official guideline for alcoholism. A fact that most of my friends and co-workers were surprised to learn, and a few suggested that it doesn't apply to the current environment.
:mrgreen:
It can build up quickly. My wife and I were going through a number of wine bottles per week before we had to tamp it down. Awareness is the first step. You said you are an optimizer (I am too). If you are aware you'll likely build new systems and habits to keep it under control.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by midareff » Sat May 23, 2020 4:00 pm

Opposite here... spending is way down. Primary cc is down from $2K a month to a couple hundred. The card we use for eating out is maybe $75 for pickup orders last 2 weeks. Drinking a bit more... Oh well, it's good Bourbon. Way to much TV... Cruise lines owe us maybe $30K in refunds, we will see what they and the insurance do. Did a thorough portfolio review... changed very little other than changing my RMD to a rollover transfer to my Roth and stopping scheduled withdrawals from taxable as there are no cruises to pay for.

We are retired and live in South Florida, it's T shirts and shorts and we live well within our means, probably too modestly. .. we don't have a list of wants.

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StevieG72
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by StevieG72 » Sat May 23, 2020 4:04 pm

I am actually spending less. Not eating out, not shopping much at all, home improvement stores are crazy busy so I stay away.
Fools think their own way is right, but the wise listen to others.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by reln » Sat May 23, 2020 4:08 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
My non charity spending is way down, making it up with higher charity.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by boglethat » Sat May 23, 2020 4:12 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
Hey me too and I suspect many other people with the drinking more and spending more shopping online. OK, I buy cheap stuff and you buy expensive stuff. You probably drink better wine than I do too. So the answer is yes I have seen my health habits slip and I am spending more online but less overall because two international trips I had planned got cancelled.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by unclescrooge » Sat May 23, 2020 4:25 pm

boglethat wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:12 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
Hey me too and I suspect many other people with the drinking more and spending more shopping online. OK, I buy cheap stuff and you buy expensive stuff. You probably drink better wine than I do too. So the answer is yes I have seen my health habits slip and I am spending more online but less overall because two international trips I had planned got cancelled.
I seriously doubt I drink better wine than you.

Maybe we buy a case of $35/bottle each year, but we split that with another couple. Most of our consumption is California red's, priced between $5 and $6 dollars. Although, last year we found a Motto priced at $2.99 and bought 6 cases.

boglethat
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by boglethat » Sat May 23, 2020 4:44 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:25 pm
boglethat wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:12 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
Hey me too and I suspect many other people with the drinking more and spending more shopping online. OK, I buy cheap stuff and you buy expensive stuff. You probably drink better wine than I do too. So the answer is yes I have seen my health habits slip and I am spending more online but less overall because two international trips I had planned got cancelled.
I seriously doubt I drink better wine than you.

Maybe we buy a case of $35/bottle each year, but we split that with another couple. Most of our consumption is California red's, priced between $5 and $6 dollars. Although, last year we found a Motto priced at $2.99 and bought 6 cases.
Although American, I live in Germany and wine is extremely cheap here although $2.99 is a great deal and I probably would have bought 10 cases. Good job!! ;-) Now just don't drink a bottle alone every night. Although for French men (at least some I know) a bottle a day is considered o.k. but more a no no.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Dr. Long » Sat May 23, 2020 4:47 pm

InMyDreams wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:48 am
I'm buying a few things for myself, and my diet is straying a bit (but not yet going to the "Covid-15").

But I've been giving money. I've given away all the stimulus money (my income level hasn't changed). Some more to other charities. Bought sandwiches in the grocery store for the man and child at the edge of the parking lot. And last night I gave cash to a family on the edge of another parking lot. I never give cash. I'm contemplating setting up grocery bags of non-perishables in my trunk so that I have a non-cash choice in these situations. Crazy times - and crazy-making times.
That is really kind of you InMy - good to see the positive side of humanity shining once in a while
"(It's) the economy, stupid," - James Carville

lostcoast
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by lostcoast » Sat May 23, 2020 5:06 pm

I have been spending about the same as we don't eat out much.
However I did up my one beer a day to two and started to get headaches.
So I just returned from shopping and I decided to try something new to beat back some of the boredom.
I bought a small bottle of CBD/THC tincture, perfectly legal here in CA.
I don't smoke, can't stand it, so I thought 'what the heck', try this.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by whodidntante » Sat May 23, 2020 5:26 pm

You don't need to spend a lot to drink good stuff. I find Wild Turkey 101 to be a value bourbon. I don't bring it out for the company, but it's what I reach for most of the time. And for mixed drinks, I prefer Everclear over clear rum or especially vodka. It's basically 2.5x alcohol for the same money, and is even cheaper in the 1.75l bottle. It doesn't need to be specifically that brand. Just buy whatever the cheapest 190 proof beverage in your area is.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by unclescrooge » Sat May 23, 2020 5:37 pm

boglethat wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:44 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:25 pm
boglethat wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:12 pm
Hey me too and I suspect many other people with the drinking more and spending more shopping online. OK, I buy cheap stuff and you buy expensive stuff. You probably drink better wine than I do too. So the answer is yes I have seen my health habits slip and I am spending more online but less overall because two international trips I had planned got cancelled.
I seriously doubt I drink better wine than you.

Maybe we buy a case of $35/bottle each year, but we split that with another couple. Most of our consumption is California red's, priced between $5 and $6 dollars. Although, last year we found a Motto priced at $2.99 and bought 6 cases.
Although American, I live in Germany and wine is extremely cheap here although $2.99 is a great deal and I probably would have bought 10 cases. Good job!! ;-) Now just don't drink a bottle alone every night. Although for French men (at least some I know) a bottle a day is considered o.k. but more a no no.
I would've too, but it was impossible to find.

We had to drive to 6 different locations to snag the 6 cases. One store we called ahead and reserved 4 cases but they accidentally gave it to the wrong person before we got there. It was quite the adventure. I think it's normally priced at $12.99 bottle.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by unclescrooge » Sat May 23, 2020 5:40 pm

whodidntante wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 5:26 pm
You don't need to spend a lot to drink good stuff. I find Wild Turkey 101 to be a value bourbon. I don't bring it out for the company, but it's what I reach for most of the time. And for mixed drinks, I prefer Everclear over clear rum or especially vodka. It's basically 2.5x alcohol for the same money, and is even cheaper in the 1.75l bottle. It doesn't need to be specifically that brand. Just buy whatever the cheapest 190 proof beverage in your area is.
I'll try that next time. I usually drink Jameson caskmates stout. It's usually on sale a few times a year so I can it for about $25.

kjvmartin
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by kjvmartin » Sat May 23, 2020 5:41 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 2:35 pm
kjvmartin wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 11:18 am
I was on my way to the "Quarantine 15". I'm not a runner (knees) and don't have room for an indoor bike/elliptical. Gym remains closed and probably won't go back after they open. I decided to re-calibrate my Apple Watch fitness goals and I'm somewhere between sedentary and active by taking a 30 minute walk each day to close my rings.

I can't stress how much of a difference the goal of closing your rings can have. It forces you to get up and move at least once an hour, exercise at least 30 minutes, and burn a certain number of calories each day. I find that once I've completed those goals, I'm less likely to "throw all the work away" by snacking heavily/bad choices in the evening. I've been making coconut oil popcorn on the stove and snacking on that lately along with some Kirkland frozen blueberries.
Can you explain closing rings please?

I've maintained my weight, probably due to eating only within an 8 hour window, and my breakfast shake that consists of 40 grams of low carb protein powder, 4oz spinach, 1 oz blue berries and 1 tablespoon of peanut butter.

I will try snacking of frozen blue berries instead of chips.
I'm not familiar with other ecosystems, but an Apple Watch could be a good health investment. Every day it gives you 3 rings to close, there are rewards and encouragements along the way.... You can compete with your contacts as well..

One ring is 30 minutes of exercise. One is a numeric calorie burn goal (usually accomplished during the exercise. The third tracks that you are up and moving at least once every hour for 12 total hours each day.

Helps me immensely. I used to play video games, now my I fill my circles with real life activity!

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celia
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by celia » Sat May 23, 2020 6:01 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work,...
This is about as far as I got. How could the kids be "home alone" if you are there? Were you hiding out in a different room?

It sounds like you missed out on great opportunities to do things with the kids: make a surprise for mom (food, art), read books (and have them "read" to you), decorate a temporary "playhouse" (hang a sheet up, find a big box), make chalk drawings in the driveway, look for bugs outdoors, ...

When I interact with kids, I have no time to use my computer or phone. Besides, the kids are more fun.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Doom&Gloom » Sat May 23, 2020 6:06 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:36 pm
jebmke wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:27 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:03 pm
Kids are 3 and 5.
Surprised they like ghost pepper chips.
LOL, no those are for me. I figured if I was going to eat chips I might as well eat the ones I like.
Only buy cheap chips that you don't like. The worst possible outcome will be that you save money. With any luck you won't be tempted to snack on them.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by sd323232 » Sat May 23, 2020 6:09 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
dang, i actually saved money during pandemic, i work from home, so no more gas expenses, and im saving on food too since i cook at home now

mouses
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by mouses » Sat May 23, 2020 6:16 pm

I find myself spending more because I feel I have to stock up for potential shortages. This is even though things are coming back into stock. It's not a rational decision, more like some background brain activity thinks this is necessary. I've reached the point that when I make up a shopping list for peapod, I realize I hardly need to buy anything.

I did shell out about $2000 on some deck work and staining without a qualm, and usually I agonize over spending that much money.

jello_nailer
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by jello_nailer » Sat May 23, 2020 6:21 pm

I spent tons less. Like someone else mentioned CC bills, my CC bill has been minuscule lately.

I don't know where I saw this, maybe on Bogleheads, but this sums it up for me:

"My biggest problem is trying to figure out whether I contact the producers of My 600 LB Life, or do I wait for them to find me?"

boglethat
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by boglethat » Sat May 23, 2020 6:31 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 5:37 pm
boglethat wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:44 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:25 pm
boglethat wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 4:12 pm
Hey me too and I suspect many other people with the drinking more and spending more shopping online. OK, I buy cheap stuff and you buy expensive stuff. You probably drink better wine than I do too. So the answer is yes I have seen my health habits slip and I am spending more online but less overall because two international trips I had planned got cancelled.
I seriously doubt I drink better wine than you.

Maybe we buy a case of $35/bottle each year, but we split that with another couple. Most of our consumption is California red's, priced between $5 and $6 dollars. Although, last year we found a Motto priced at $2.99 and bought 6 cases.
Although American, I live in Germany and wine is extremely cheap here although $2.99 is a great deal and I probably would have bought 10 cases. Good job!! ;-) Now just don't drink a bottle alone every night. Although for French men (at least some I know) a bottle a day is considered o.k. but more a no no.
I would've too, but it was impossible to find.

We had to drive to 6 different locations to snag the 6 cases. One store we called ahead and reserved 4 cases but they accidentally gave it to the wrong person before we got there. It was quite the adventure. I think it's normally priced at $12.99 bottle.
Wow! What a deal!! And you not only got the wine but a story to go with it.

Even thought your wife is a great cook if she is working out-of-the house and you are at home maybe you should learn to cook something special. It can be fun.

blackwhisker
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by blackwhisker » Sat May 23, 2020 6:34 pm

Staying home with little kids 24X7 can be exhausting and isolating. I feel your pain! I find it's easier to maintain good health habits when I can carve out some time for myself to exercise, talk to friends and re-charge. (Of course, it is easier said than done.)

It is a difficult time for many of us with schools and daycares closed. Take good care of yourself. Wish you and your family the best.

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by BogleFanGal » Sat May 23, 2020 7:19 pm

I have seen the fill line sneakily creeping up on my wine glass, despite my best willpower. It's still about a glass to 1.5 glasses tops a night - so I'm winning the battle so far. Unfortunately, as much as those bigger bordeaux glasses are beautiful and enjoyable to use...it's virtually impossible to limit a pour to 5 ounces....it looks pitifully small in that roomy bowl. (Especially when free refills are on the house.)

I think I had more willpower when I used smaller, cheaper wineglasses - or was paying $10/glass dining out. lol
"Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of eighty and gradually approach eighteen." Mark Twain

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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by ResearchMed » Sat May 23, 2020 7:26 pm

Doom&Gloom wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 6:06 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:36 pm
jebmke wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:27 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:03 pm
Kids are 3 and 5.
Surprised they like ghost pepper chips.
LOL, no those are for me. I figured if I was going to eat chips I might as well eat the ones I like.
Only buy cheap chips that you don't like. The worst possible outcome will be that you save money. With any luck you won't be tempted to snack on them.
Nope, the "worst possible outcome" would be to get those horrible cheap chips that you don't like AND then you do eat them.
Lousy taste, little or no satisfaction, you spent the money anyway, AND... you get those unhealthy calories as well.
:(
That would really be a waste in several ways.

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.

TN_Boy
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by TN_Boy » Sat May 23, 2020 7:30 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
Not for us. We have no kids at home right now to manage, which would probably drive me to drink and eat to excess ...

Our expenses are down. We usually spend a decent amount yearly on travel, and well, no money is being spent on travel right now.

The weather in our part of the country has been splendid -- probably the nicest spring I can remember -- and we are outdoors quite a bit. We walk a lot, golf courses are open in our area, etc. We can't go to the gym, but we have managed to get some strength workouts in at home. We eat "out" about the same amount we used to, except that it is now takeout, not dine-in.

And we have some free hobbies (I wander about taking pictures, which is free for example. I can spend two hours trying to get bird pictures without any trouble at all).

I do miss going to the gym. Even when they open up, not clear when I'll feel comfortable going back.

We have thus far managed to avoid retail therapy, but I can't say I haven't been tempted.

apex84
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by apex84 » Sat May 23, 2020 8:02 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 2:35 pm
Can you explain closing rings please?
https://www.apple.com/watch/close-your-rings/

Ron Ronnerson
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Ron Ronnerson » Sat May 23, 2020 8:34 pm

I have had the opposite experience. I used to drink wine a few times a week and haven’t had any alcohol at all since the beginning of March. Instead, I’m using the time that I would normally spend commuting to exercise each day. I’ve got an elliptical machines and exercise bike at home that I’ve been using every single day and live near hills with lots of hiking trails that we’ve started making us of also. I figured that I’d take the opportunities this pandemic is providing to become healthier and wealthier. I’m exercising daily, getting more rest, have stopped drinking alcohol, am no longer stressed by having to commute or feeling that I don’t have enough time in the day, have cut down on expenses, am refinancing my home, and spending lots of quality time with my wife and daughter.

I’ll focus on this last area. Each evening, my almost-six-year-old and I dance in the living room and play games that we’ve made up. We got a couple of swimming noodles and the kid likes to pretend they’re lasers and it’s her job to avoid them by jumping, ducking, or moving out of the way as I move the noodles in random directions. She used to take gymnastics before things shut down so often incorporates cartwheels and other fancy moves. Once in a while, we’ll put on 80s rock music and battle each other with the noodles. She is sort of merciless but the smile on her face as she whacks me is priceless.

We also have a very soft ball that’s about the size of a volleyball. We play a version of dodge-ball with it. We take our cat’s bed and put it on top of something and shoot baskets into it using the ball. We also play soccer with it. We use the noodles to play hockey with the ball. We’ve got a couple of balloons around here as well and sometimes will play a game where the goal is to not let them touch the ground.

We walk around the neighborhood on scavenger hunts (like look for blue things or animals). We go up the hills near our house when the weather is nice. Today, we got Chinese takeout and had a picnic at a park/skate park. The kiddo rode her scooter at the skate park while my wife and I hung out under the shade of a nice tree on a lovely California day. These amazing experiences, which cost little to nothing, are the silver-linings provided by a terrible pandemic.

I guess the point I’m trying to make is that you can do what you want with the situation at hand. Be careful about how much you drink and what you eat. We could be living in this strange new world for a while longer (this is only a couple of months in) and developing good, healthy ways will likely not only lead to greater happiness, but a strong immune system could even help you fend off a virus if you happen to catch something going around.

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LilyFleur
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by LilyFleur » Sat May 23, 2020 8:37 pm

celia wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 6:01 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work,...
This is about as far as I got. How could the kids be "home alone" if you are there? Were you hiding out in a different room?

It sounds like you missed out on great opportunities to do things with the kids: make a surprise for mom (food, art), read books (and have them "read" to you), decorate a temporary "playhouse" (hang a sheet up, find a big box), make chalk drawings in the driveway, look for bugs outdoors, ...

When I interact with kids, I have no time to use my computer or phone. Besides, the kids are more fun.
My kids loved it when I would set up a card table and cover it with a sheet. It was a fort, it was a cave. They sat in there and played for hours. Everything they would play with outside the fort became more fun inside the fort. My sister and I had hours of fun in a refrigerator box under the mimosa tree. Sometimes the free "toys" develop their creativity the most.

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Elsebet
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Elsebet » Sat May 23, 2020 8:52 pm

Hubby and I both gained weight. I have been working from home since Mar 3 and still am. I took a new job and we moved across the country during the lockdown. What's funny is I started my new job a month ago and haven't yet been to the office, don't even have a badge to get in. I was so stressed out from my previous job and adding the moving/house selling/COVID-19 stress made me stop my bodyweight fitness regimen until we settled down in our new location. I just started it up again and have to work back up to my previous benchmarks, luckily I'm finding it going quicker/easier than I anticipated. We are finding some good hiking trails in our new area, just did a few miles on one today.

Definitely are still eating a lot of comfort foods like bagged snacks that we didn't eat much of before. Come the fall (maybe earlier) I will put myself back on the calorie counting app but I'm allowing ice cream for the summer.
"...the man who adapts himself to his slender means and makes himself wealthy on a little sum, is the truly rich man..." ~Seneca

oldfort
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by oldfort » Sat May 23, 2020 9:05 pm

Judging from your earlier posts, your problem isn't financial. You need mental health support. Bogleheads isn't the best place for advice on this, but talk to a psychologist or psychiatrist. If this continues, think about AA. Have a serious conversation with your family on how they can help you with your problem.
As it is, I'm technically an alcoholic now. (As defined by having more than 14 drinks a week).

crinkles2
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by crinkles2 » Sat May 23, 2020 9:15 pm

I haven't been personally as affected by lockdown as most. I've been able to continue to go to work as construction kept going as per normal.

I am craving some smooth, thin cut, ocean salt chips right now. I've put my order in with the grocery shop...

Drink wise, I have been enjoying some port every night in the last few months, only ~2 ounces a night.

slick_dealer_05
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by slick_dealer_05 » Sat May 23, 2020 9:22 pm

You sound depressed and really need therapy. Spending $3000 on a painting is just ridiculous....buying crap won't make you happy

MathIsMyWayr
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by MathIsMyWayr » Sat May 23, 2020 11:45 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 3:09 pm
Angst wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 1:35 pm
livesoft wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:35 am
Going to a Crepe Myrtle is an interesting choice as that tree is super super super messy.
Sorry, but this doesn't bode well. :shock:
Crape Myrtle Characteristics wrote:Be prepared for plenty of raking and clean-up.
I have two jacarandas in the front yard and I'm okay with that level of mess. If you think a crepe myrtle is messy, you've never dealt with a Chinese camphor tree. :mrgreen:
Why so much hate of crepe myrtle? Crepe myrtle is the most beautiful tree. Its flowers are amazing and trunks are interesting.

The crepe myrtles are among the most satisfactory of plants for the South: showy summer flowers, attractive bark, and (in many cases) brilliant fall color make them year-round garden performers.
https://www.southernliving.com/home-gar ... rtle-trees

Katietsu
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Katietsu » Sun May 24, 2020 2:30 am

Less junk food, fast food, sweets and alcohol here. Since I am not out and about, I am not tempted to stop at fast food or grab a poor choice on a gas fill up stop. Since I am ordering most groceries online with pickup, there is not the temptation to grab less healthy choice they intentionally display prominently in the store. And our at home food choices are mostly lower calorie than a typical restaurant meal. Am a bit disappointed I have only lost a small amount of weight. Anyway, for me, I do not have the willpower to avoid eating junk if it is in front of me. Much easier to keep it out of the house and keep myself out of the chip and cookie aisle. However, I can not say that I have given up eating ice cream on a semi regular basis now or at anytime in my life!

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beyou
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by beyou » Sun May 24, 2020 7:00 am

down:
Commuting (save $400/mo)

dry cleaners (maybe 50-100/mo)

gym (50/mo)

lunches out (200/mo)

cable - can’t watch more covid news and without sports,
dropped all live tv for now, saving maybe $50/mo

haircuts ($20/mo)

vacations/weekend trips (variable)

up:
groceries (cooking more at home maybe $200-400/mo higher)

consumables (tp, napkins, things experiencing shortages, inflated costs, and using more since not at office).

misc household repair previously ignored (non recurring)

misc cooking supplies (non recurring)


Hard to quantify, given mixture of recurring and non recurring changes, but overall saving money if I focus on recurring, and I think the non recurring are not frivolous, and needed to be done anyway). No change to suddenly impulse buy.

Health wise, miss the gym, but forced myself to bike in the cold back 2 months ago, now really enjoying it. Hard not to eat more when my “office” is feet away from my well stocked kitchen.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by unclescrooge » Sun May 24, 2020 12:14 pm

Katietsu wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 2:30 am
Less junk food, fast food, sweets and alcohol here. Since I am not out and about, I am not tempted to stop at fast food or grab a poor choice on a gas fill up stop. Since I am ordering most groceries online with pickup, there is not the temptation to grab less healthy choice they intentionally display prominently in the store. And our at home food choices are mostly lower calorie than a typical restaurant meal. Am a bit disappointed I have only lost a small amount of weight. Anyway, for me, I do not have the willpower to avoid eating junk if it is in front of me. Much easier to keep it out of the house and keep myself out of the chip and cookie aisle. However, I can not say that I have given up eating ice cream on a semi regular basis now or at anytime in my life!
I've been pretty good about avoiding junk food until we had kids. Much easier when there is no junk in the house. Even then, I been successful at avoiding French fries. In fact, I've never ordered French fries as an adult.

cs412a
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by cs412a » Sun May 24, 2020 12:32 pm

OP, from what you've said, it seems that spending on a new tree, sofa and artwork is something you could afford and but were putting off before. I'd look at that money as an investment in your home that you'll be able to enjoy over the next few years. So I don't see any need to beat yourself up for that.

As for me, I plan to have some cordless blinds installed in my bedroom, and have a picture my grandmother gave me reframed. These are things I've wanted to do for a while, and now is a good time to do them. Plus, I'm employing local businesses. :D

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BogleFanGal
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by BogleFanGal » Sun May 24, 2020 12:36 pm

Ron Ronnerson wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 8:34 pm
I have had the opposite experience. I used to drink wine a few times a week and haven’t had any alcohol at all since the beginning of March. Instead, I’m using the time that I would normally spend commuting to exercise each day. I’ve got an elliptical machines and exercise bike at home that I’ve been using every single day and live near hills with lots of hiking trails that we’ve started making us of also. I figured that I’d take the opportunities this pandemic is providing to become healthier and wealthier. I’m exercising daily, getting more rest, have stopped drinking alcohol, am no longer stressed by having to commute or feeling that I don’t have enough time in the day, have cut down on expenses, am refinancing my home, and spending lots of quality time with my wife and daughter.
I hate posts like this. (Just kidding - good for you.)
"Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of eighty and gradually approach eighteen." Mark Twain

holycow007
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by holycow007 » Sun May 24, 2020 12:55 pm

Ours is pretty much the same.it went down in some areas (school, eating out) and went up elsewhere (got my decks done, spent on gardening)
Started on a weight loss pre-covid early in the year (one of those new year resolutions) with a goal of 185 (phase 2 is 175) from 205.
So far barely under 190. Mostly food but adding walking and tennis now.
Drinking wine went up slightly
DW is inspired by me, taking it more seriously and religiously exercising (definitely better than me)
Last time we did something like this was 5 years ago..I went from 225 to 175 in a year and during that time she went from 180 to 135. Since then both of us went 10-15% up. Hope to get there again this year.

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JonnyDVM
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by JonnyDVM » Sun May 24, 2020 1:15 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:27 am
Since the pandemic erupted, and the kids have been home alone with me while my wife goes off to work, I find I'm drinking more and spending more time shopping online.

In the past month, I've spent a ridiculous amount of money replacing a tree that had been bothering me since we moved into the house. It was a Chinese camphor that was planted 10 ft from the house. Provided great shade in the patio but super messy and needs to be trimmed every other year to keep it under 30 ft tall. We mulched it and replaced it with a 12ft Crepe Myrtle. The expense to do this was shocking.

We also spent $3k on a painting that I saw 2 years ago on vacation, and a similar amount on a new leather sectional from Costco.

Plus I find myself eating chips and ice cream on a regular basis, something I haven't done in 35 years.

This lack of self control is bothersome.

Has anyone else seen their personal expenses go up and their health habits slip?
I’ve read enough of your posts to know you can afford these indulgences. If a tree was bothering you for years, it’s good that you had it removed. Why have something you hate keep mocking you for years whenever you go out on your patio?

Every friend I know has had the following issues- Weight gain and increased alcohol consumption. EVERYONE. You are not alone. As far as sweets. I can’t help myself. If they are in the house I will eat them. So I try not to buy them. That’s the only way to be successful with eating better

There are a few pieces of art work over the years we have eyeballed and not purchased because it was expensive for us at the time. If I could go back in time and write that couple a check to buy the piece of art they really wanted I would. Life is short. If you can afford something and it will make you happier, just buy it.

You should consider walking or jogging more. It helps get the restless energy out. And cheer up. Things are starting to open back up. Our state was at the forefront of reopening and so far it’s been going fairly well.
I’d trade it all for a little more | -C Montgomery Burns

tibbitts
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by tibbitts » Sun May 24, 2020 1:33 pm

Things like a couch aren't frequently recurring so I don't see that as an issue. The tree - I would have just removed it, you've just exchanged one problem for another. I had two tree - one blew over so now just one, which almost blew over. I might just get rid of it, but not during the summer.

H-Town
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by H-Town » Sun May 24, 2020 1:51 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 12:14 pm
Katietsu wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 2:30 am
Less junk food, fast food, sweets and alcohol here. Since I am not out and about, I am not tempted to stop at fast food or grab a poor choice on a gas fill up stop. Since I am ordering most groceries online with pickup, there is not the temptation to grab less healthy choice they intentionally display prominently in the store. And our at home food choices are mostly lower calorie than a typical restaurant meal. Am a bit disappointed I have only lost a small amount of weight. Anyway, for me, I do not have the willpower to avoid eating junk if it is in front of me. Much easier to keep it out of the house and keep myself out of the chip and cookie aisle. However, I can not say that I have given up eating ice cream on a semi regular basis now or at anytime in my life!
I've been pretty good about avoiding junk food until we had kids. Much easier when there is no junk in the house. Even then, I been successful at avoiding French fries. In fact, I've never ordered French fries as an adult.
Would it better to teach your kids to eat healthy food at young age? You make the call, not the kids. Unfortunately, I’m hearing a lot of excuses.

Katietsu
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Re: Personal spending out of control after Covid-19

Post by Katietsu » Sun May 24, 2020 1:51 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 12:14 pm
Katietsu wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 2:30 am
Less junk food, fast food, sweets and alcohol here. Since I am not out and about, I am not tempted to stop at fast food or grab a poor choice on a gas fill up stop. Since I am ordering most groceries online with pickup, there is not the temptation to grab less healthy choice they intentionally display prominently in the store. And our at home food choices are mostly lower calorie than a typical restaurant meal. Am a bit disappointed I have only lost a small amount of weight. Anyway, for me, I do not have the willpower to avoid eating junk if it is in front of me. Much easier to keep it out of the house and keep myself out of the chip and cookie aisle. However, I can not say that I have given up eating ice cream on a semi regular basis now or at anytime in my life!
I've been pretty good about avoiding junk food until we had kids. Much easier when there is no junk in the house. Even then, I been successful at avoiding French fries. In fact, I've never ordered French fries as an adult.
Maybe you are being too hard on yourself then and you are doing OK.

I do not understand the kid thing though. I would hope you were not giving junk food to a toddler!

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