In my mind, being frugal, is less about not spending and more about intentional spending. For example, I may have (mostly) stopped my mindless shopping habit thanks to a No Spend Challenge I did several years ago, but I am not afraid to spend money on things that I feel add value to my life.
After all, frugality is not just about a house full of containers waiting to be reused, or having a pile of cheap clothes waiting to be mended. Sometimes, it’s about using your time and money intentionally to do more of what you love.
Here are seven things that I never regret spending money on:
For me, good food is one of the best things in life. Especially delicious, satisfying meals where I’m gathered around a table with family or friends. It’s about quality. Quality food, quality company and quality conversation. Tasty, well made food and slow eaten dinners whether you’re eating out or cooking at home just can’t be beat. Sometimes being frugal means purchasing some grocery items of lesser quality so that you can splurge on the things that really matter to your family’s good food philosophy. (Grass fed beef, organic fruits & vegetables, for example.)
Travel or Fun Experiences
Nothing quite brings a smile to my face like the opportunity to travel to new places or enjoy fun experiences. We recently took our daughters to a local annual fair that was quite costly. (Admission, food, rides…it all adds up!) But we save our hard earned money for times like this. I loved seeing the smile on our oldest daughter’s face after she experienced her very first fair ride. Or hearing her squeal when she saw the tiny baby pigs. It was worth it!
My husband and I also have dreams to travel abroad one day. I have done some traveling in Australia and Africa before I was married, but my husband hasn’t done much. I can’t wait to see the day when we can make his dream of travelling to Europe and other countries a reality.
A hobby that makes you happy
I consider Simply Frugal a money making business, but it’s also my hobby. I spend time researching, writing and even spend a decent amount of money to keep it running. But it’s fun! I enjoy learning all aspects of running an online business and I love seeing what I do help others. As with any hobby, (sewing, jewelry making, or even a tropical fish hobbyist) you have to spend money to do your thing. And if it brings you joy, then by all means go with it and make room in your budget.
Learning new things
I love learning new things. I’ve done online courses (where I learned a lot about various aspects of blogging) and in-person conferences. I’ve also spent money on books and travel; all experiences that have helped expand my mind. Learning makes me feel more confident and proud of myself.
Comfortable, sturdy shoes that I wear season after season. A high quality set of cooking pots made to last. A brand name backpack that I have been using for every trip I have taken since I went to Australia 15 years ago.
I’m talking about well made, quality items that serve a specific purpose in your life. It’s incredibly satisfying to actually wear something out and then replace them with something just as good. In today’s disposable society, there is something so satisfying about knowing you’ve made a good, quality purchase!
Services that improve your quality of life
There is no rule in the frugal lifestyle that says you must DIY everything. If you really hate housework, hire a cleaner. If you desperately need some time to yourself, hire a babysitter. Or even if you think you can fix the toilet, sometimes hiring a professional can save you money in the long run if something goes wrong if you try to DIY.
I know that services are sometimes expensive, but it’s about looking at your values and prioritizing your spending. You might be surprised at what you can afford!
A cause you believe in
Lastly, I never regret being generous. I believe that giving to charity is important. Whether that be a local charity or a charity in a third world country. Imagine what would happen if everyone gave, even in a small way? Money donated to charity always feels like money well spent if you’re donating to what speaks to you.
I also love to surprise friends and family with little meaningful gifts, especially when they are not expecting anything. I believe in cheering up those that are “in the trenches” of daily life.
What are your thoughts? What do you never regret spending money on? Let me know in the comments!