Jeff and I have decided to seriously focus on saving money and paying off debt (school loans that equal a mortgage). Dave Ramsey is a Christian financial 'guru' that we are currently following. He is really good at telling it like it is and helping you to realize where your money is really going. Since Jeff and I are finally out of school (kind of), we can focus on paying off debt instead of accruing it. Ramsey says that student loans are basically used for helping the student look good while going to school. I think that is a bit far, but it does have some truth to it.
I don't advocate going to Wal-Mart on principle. I don't agree with a lot of things about the corporation. I wish I could stop shopping there all together, but when you are trying to save money, it is almost unavoidable. So, I was at Wal-Mart yesterday (yes, I am a hypocrite) and I was very hungry. I was at a dental appointment/cleaning/new patient thingy that went from 11:30am to 1pm...prime lunch hours. I thought about waiting until I got home to eat, which is what Dave recommends. He always says "beans and rice, rice and beans" and "you shouldn't see the inside of a restaurant until all your debt is paid off"...but Wal-Mart deli is technically not a restaurant. I got a sandwich and a drink for a little over $4. I thought that was pretty good. The thing is, the drink was over a dollar. For some reason, when you are really thirsty, those drinks at the cash register look very appealing. I guess I could've waited and gotten a "Sam's Choice" soda for a quarter or even a 2 liter for 58 cents, but I didn't...partially because they disgust me and partially because I was in a hurry and it wasn't as convenient as the expensive drinks lined up next to the sandwiches. (Smart marketing move on their part). So, I'm walking over to another aisle to pick up the one thing I came for. Who really gets ONE thing at Wal-Mart? I passed a bin of DVDs marked for a dollar. (These items near the register are dubbed "impulse items" for a reason) I looked over them, most of them really lame, and decided that I shouldn't spend an extra dollar on a DVD. What a waste, I thought.
Isn't it interesting how the mind works? A DVD that Maya could watch over and over seems frivolous while the drink, which will be gone in 5 minutes, is a good buy.