Budgeting, Consumer products

Do you treat yourself?

I thought that the timing of this post was quite relevant, as I sit here at my kitchen table, typing away and eating Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ice cream  🙂  I can feel the beginnings of a chest cough creeping up on me, so in addition to cough medicine, I thought that some gourmet goodness would help banish the yuckies. Of course, this decision was cemented by the $2.99 price tag on the ice cream; the regular price is $6.99. For a piddly 500 ml (about 17 oz; wow, that does not sound like a lot)!!! Of course, across the border in Calais, Maine, the same container of ice cream retails at about half of the Canadian price (however, that is a whole separate post!).

My definition of “treating” myself is a) buying myself some thing that I usually wouldn’t; or b) paying a price that I never usually would for a certain item. You see, I grew up in a family with an accountant as a father, and a stay-at-home mother who could have been the nutritional and financial coordinator for a large city. She was, and still is, extremely good at both stretching a dollar, making healthy, nutritious, delicious meals with what she does have, and, best of all, very rarely paying full price for name-brand items. Don’t get me wrong; we had PLENTY of treats, but they were not all manifested as food; very often, buying name-brand clothing and food coincided with a family vacation to Maine or New Hampshire, when we would stop at Marden’s.I learned my lesson when I paid nearly $100 for a pair of Adidas sneakers at a store here in Canada; 6 months later, I saw the EXACT same shoes in an outlet store in the States for $19.99!

Taking all that into account, I firmly believe in buying yourself something to cheer yourself up when you’re not quite feeling yourself, or when you need a pick-me-up. We all have those days, and if you’re a sufferer of depression like myself, there can sometimes be more bad ones than good. I’ve found that if I go online and chat to friends, Tweet, or read some of my favorite blogs, that often helps. However, if you REALLY want that full-price Ben & Jerry’s, go ahead; you have my permission!

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