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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Really, Really, Really, Really, Really Stupid Things I Have Done with Money

The currThe Really, Really, Really, Really, Really Stupid Things I Have Done with Moneyent financial situation of my family -- me, my wife and our two young boys -- is so tight that stupid decisions we make about money really cost us. It wasn't always the case. Back when we could still use our credit cards and my wife was working for a nice paying corporation that would eventually lay her off about a month before our second son was born, we had enough financial wriggle room to be boneheads. Which we were. Repeatedly. I have kept a mental list of some of the most egregious of our mistakes.

-- My family kept one of those grocery store carpet machines out for a about a week and half. We used the machine for maybe two hours and then didn't return it due to sheer laziness. That Hall of Shame moment cost us $325 dollars.

-- We've racked up $50 in Blockbuster late fees. Maybe more. I joke to my wife that one day they're going to put us in Blockbuster jail. We're a funny family, but we're also idiots.

-- Sorry, this one is directly on my wife. It's late at night, the kids are finally in bed and she picks out a movie that she'd like to watch on Pay Per View. I order it, see how much we're going to pay, the credits roll and the next sound I hear is her snoring.

-- We've paid for swimming lessons we've given up on. Gym memberships that went moldering. Fat and broke, that's how we roll.

-- I've agreed to those extended car warranties even when I knew I they were a rip off.

-- We bought a sandbox for our two boys. Two bags of play sand costs about $8 at Home Depot. In the world of expenses for kids, that is nothing. But when you keep leaving the top of the sand box off and it rains and ruins the sand and then you GO BACK to Home Depot again and again to fill up the sandbox, well, you're entering some higher plain of stupidity.

-- Back then, every once in a while, we'd make these grand shows of getting serious about our finances. We'd go to great lengths combing through the paper and cutting out grocery store coupons -- which, of course, we would leave at home each and every time.

I'd like to say that making this list makes me feel better. But really the only thing that would do that is if we start saving money. And we aren't there yet, but our circumstances are forcing us to try harder and hopefully one day be smarter.

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