Our first year of marriage has been one of excesses. Not that we lived excessively, per se, but our lifestyle was definitely a step up from what we were used to, and wasn’t necessarily one that we can sustain (at least for now). As we move on to our second year together, we plan to liver a bit leaner, both financially and physically. Let us explain:
The first excesses started before we even got married, as we moved in together as we began receiving house-warming and wedding gifts, which only continued to pile up after we got back from our honeymoon. Who knew two people could accumulate so much STUFF in so short a time?! In addition, after we moved in together we had the obligatory trips to Target and IKEA to stock our home with things we didn’t already have (i.e. furniture).
Here is a list of some of the one-time purchases we’ve made in the last year:
- New couch
- Dining room chairs
- Bar cart
- Wedding attendant gifts
- other random (like new party dresses & shoes for events like rehearsal dinner)
- Monthly eating out @ nice restaurant x 1 year (A gift we gave ourselves was that we were going to treat ourselves to one nice meal per month. We wanted to experience the local restaurant scene, and to celebrate.)
- Travel expenses (friends' weddings, graduations, holidays & other trips etc.)
- We went to 8 weddings and got invites to 5 additional ones
- We traveled out of town to most of them and of course bought gifts
- Our parents & siblings all live out of state and we like to spend some holidays together ie. flights & road trips.
- Two cars!
- Going public: We’ve all seen the studies that say if you advertise your weigh loss goals/efforts, then you are more likely to succeed. This means posting on facebook, twitter, telling friends and family, with the idea that they can help coach you (or chastise you if you cheat!)
- Moving to a neighborhood that has easy access to running trails/sidewalks with new & interesting routes. This is a big priority! More hopefully updated soon!
- Mutual support: Even though at the time it can get annoying, we will rely on each other for motivation, encouragement, working out together, and coaching. “Can we have dessert? Nope!” “I’m just going to sleep in” “No, you’re going for a run.”
- Eating dinner earlier
- Continue to eat vegetarian in our house, sticking to the mantra “Eat food, mostly plants, not too much.”
- Cutting out desserts (not entirely, but smaller portions and less often)
- And perhaps what will be most difficult will be no longer dining out fancily (especially since we’re moving to a new city!), but this will be much easier on our waists & our wallet (we were averaging $100/meal with drinks and tips)
- No more cable; just netflix on our roku
- No more magazine subscriptions
- Checking car & renters insurances
- No more buying cars/furniture/vacations
- Selling our stuff (See this post and this one)
- Cooking at home (which we already do)
We have absolutely no regrets on how we spent our first year of marriage. We wouldn't change a thing. It was a beautiful year while it lasted and we know with our changing lifestyles thing will have to change. We really enjoyed being able to go out to dinner every month, go on many small and even 1 large vacation, buy new 'us' things and overall have a great time with no guilt. I won't say we're being more responsible from now on since we're were always conscious and responsible about purchases and how we budgeted our money. We both worked and made enough to have a semi indulgent first year of marriage. It gave us a great foundation. Now we have a lean year ahead.