December 20, 2018

2018 New Years Resolution End of Year Check In and Results

If you'll remember, I set one goal for myself for 2018: spend less on non-essential horse supplies.

My intent was two-fold: admit to myself that I already owned everything I needed to keep Connor healthy and happy, and also admit to myself that my spending in that category was out of control in 2017. Oh and #3: Pay off some debt.

How did I end up doing?

2018 is green, 2017 is yellow.

Turns out, if you give a girl some metrics, she nails it.  I spent almost precisely one tenth of what I did the year before.  And of what I did spend, 3/4 of it was on the KPG clinic.  Cause, you know, if you're going to be videoed by a Dressage magazine and ride for an Olympian, the right outfit is borderline essential spending, c'mon.

Looking the part!  PC: Leah

Adding the "necessary" and "unnecessary" tags in Mint helped me realize most of my spending wasn't on big purchases, but was on $20-$50 purchases here and there.  In fact, if you take out my top 5 non-essential horse transactions in 2017, the average price of the remaining 24 purchases was only $44!  It's amazing how those little "just one more saddle pad" purchases add up over the year.


Using the "necessary" and "unncessary" tags didn't feel burdensome.  I'd log into Mint once a week and spend a minute or two tagging the week's purchases.  And it ended up helping me rein in my spending in other areas of my life too.  Turns out it wasn't just horse stuff that was making my money disappear a little at a time!



The best part of all of this?  We paid off both the kitchen and his student loans this year!  The kitchen was a certainty but the student loans were a definite stretch goal, so that feels especially good.

Noooooo regrets


In 2019, I'll be increasing my horse show spending again, but the year of cutting back on my non-essential horse purchases has permanently changed my relationship with spending money on "stuff".  I learned to be content with what I have, to unsubscribe from all the "SALE!" mailing lists, and how easy it is to let your hard-earned money slip away one $44 purchase at a time.  I'm not saying I'll never buy a pair of breeches again, but it probably won't be until my current pairs get holes in them!

21 comments:

  1. This is so amazing and is inspiring me to do something similar this year!

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    1. Nice! Let me know if you need motivation or accountability! Happy to help.

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  2. I cut way down on this category this year too. Not $44 cut down, but it still felt good! Those $30-40 purchases here and there really add up quickly if you're not watching them.

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    1. Isn't it a good feeling? It's hard to see it unless you're looking for how those purchases add up, but they really do.

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  3. this is a boring goal and not worthy of tack ho-ery. do better in 2019

    (jk, this is a great goal and well done)

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    1. Haha, right?! Makes for boring blogging. I've never had fewer product review posts in a year ever.

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  4. I love a good budgeting goal! This year the wheels fell off the bus for me as far as totally unnecessary spending goes and I’ve just been full on ignoring mint. I’m totally going to implement this starting 2019!

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    1. Haha, I do that too when my spending is going off the rails (ahem, Christmas presents this year....)

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  5. Congrats on achieving your spending (or not spending) goals! This is an inspiring post for me - just finished building my house finally, and absolutely must rein in spending next year. I didn't blow much on the pone in 2018, but it's amazing how many extras there were outside of the construction contract itself. I may hit you up for some advice by email if that's okay. xianleigh (@) earthlink (dot) net

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  6. You go girl! Yeah it seriously pisses me off how many "sales" there are. I need to go on a CC diet for 2019 (though that's hard when I'm putting my wedding on the cc) but yeah the other day I had a moment of "I need new clothes" and then I realized as I did laundry tht I have plenty of clothes.

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    1. Clothes are so hard! I realized pretty recently that since I only WFH and travel, I only rotate through a few outfits - things that go well with each other that minimize what I need to pack when I fly. So...I want new clothes, but I don't really need them...?

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  7. nice work!! i started using mint this past summer and it's been a game changer. like you say - it's never the "big" expenses that seem to blow the budget, but the insidious creeping little things here and there....

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    1. Yes! It's amazing how just shining a little light on your finances totally changes your perception of them.

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  8. Your kitchen is gorgeous! Way to rock this goal. My goal for next year is to not buy anything unnecessary, except horse stuff lol.

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    1. Thank you! I mean, trying to decide what is necessary and unnecessary horse stuff is REALLY hard, haha.

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  9. Nice work! I don't spend a lot on ponies anymore, but my hubby and I are notorious for those $15-30 Costco finds. Just one workout shirt, or one new pj for the kids, extra snack... I found most of our issues is nickel and dimed out of the bank account.

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