Country Living Series

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Take the challenge: ONE WEEK without spending!!!

Here's an interesting query that came across my computer this morning:

Yahoo! Finance and Shine for Women on Yahoo! would like to find a volunteer to take part in a segment about "Financial Detox" -- we need a woman to spend ONE WEEK without spending ANY money -- they must buy all of their groceries ahead of time, restrict their gas consumption, and do other things to prepare for a week of no spending! We are looking for someone who is already super thrifty and can feels confident they can take on the challenge!

Requirements: Must live within 45mins drive from Manhattan and be willing to spend ONE WEEK without spending any money. If you are a thrifty person who feels like you can take on the challenge, let us know! This will shoot on or around June 8th (you will take the challenge and document it the week prior).

Please tell me about yourself -- where do you live, what do you do for a living, for fun? Who do you live with and why are you up for this challenge? If you can take a guess at what you spend in cash on necessities each week, I'd love to know!


I confess I burst out laughing upon reading this. One week? Are they kidding? As I told my kids, “That’s a blog post. That’s just gotta be a blog post.”

Is this true? Is it really that hard to go a week without spending any money, espeically if you're allowed to stock up on groceries ahead of time? I mean, it's not like they're seeking shopoholics. They're seeking frugal people.

So how many of YOU go a week without spending? LOL -- maybe some of you should apply for this show, as I suspect I have a plethora of frugal readers.

32 comments:

  1. I am so glad I am not the only one that finds this type of "challenge" ridiculous! I find the "No Spending For a Month" stupid, too. Try no spending for a year and you can't stock up beforehand...now that's a Challenge!

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  2. Seriously? I had to laugh as well. I do this on a regular basis living out here in the sticks. It's pretty sad to think that there really are those who would struggle with this challenge. (Especially being able to prepare ahead of time) I regularly go a month at a time without shopping. I have to admit though that I've known people who can't go two days without a trip to the store.

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  3. Hah! One week without spending money?! That's nothing. I already do that now. Going 1 year or more without spending money, now that's a little more impressive.

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  4. Me, Me! Then again I don't live anywhere near Manhattan (Thank Goodness)

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  5. I am in the middle of a one week fiscal fast and do at least once a year a no spend month. I don't stock up ahead of time on anything. It helps me keep things in perspective of how much money we waste on needless things. I think we are pretty frugal but get sloppy many times, stepping back with a no spend week or month helps us. We are not poor and can afford what we do with no debt but we want to be better stewards of our money.

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    1. I think that's a great idea, not for the challenge or a tv show but like you say to put things back in to perspective.

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  6. I might have a problem with that, because when I use something it goes on my list x2 for replacement. I get itchy when I use something today because I want it on the shelf for the day I actually need it. But the answer is yes I can.

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  7. Ouch! My sides are still splitting! (My wife in the other room wants to know what's so funny.) We often go a week without spending any money. That's because we have none to spend. We live on a very tight budget. Our computer is the only "gadget" we own, and it's almost 5 years old. No TV satellite or cable, no HBO (do they still have that?), no iPods, qPods or bluepods! Like you, Patrice, we live a ways from the nearest town, about 25 miles, which means we rarely ever eat out or go to a movie, etc. It's amazing when you don't get all involved in the material world with its myriad of gadgets and doohickeys, how much time you have to admire God's beautiful world and enjoy LIFE, rather than THINGS. --Fred & Deb in AZ

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  8. Are range fees and ammo excluded?

    Terry
    Florida

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  9. Phyllis (N/W Jersey)April 25, 2012 at 3:38 PM

    Ha! Too easy .... could do that with my left hand tied behind my back and my right foot in chicken poop!

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  10. This may be the snark in me, but they want someone like that within shouting distance of NYC? Seriously?
    I mean, I know a few frugal people in that area from various forums, but they still hit the markets 2-3 times a week for fresh fruit/veggies because they don't have a ton of extra space in the tiny domiciles to sock it away, not to mention the COL over there.... *shudder*

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  11. I do go shopping every week, sometimes more than once, because the supermarket is so close. Although I have quite a few vegies/herbs growing in large pots, they don't supply anywhere near the amount or variety of fresh fruit/veg that we like to eat. So, I buy these regularly and every week look for excellent sales which is when I also stock up on those foods/products.

    If, however, the shops for whatever reason are inaccessible, we would be just fine because I have a great store of food - dehydrated/canned/tin etc which we would live off. When we had floods earlier this year (Australia) I couldn't believe the worried comments from people about running out of nappies for an infant or only having a couple of days supply of food in the house. That's not going to happen to me if I can help it.

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  12. LOL I do it twice a month. It's called the second week after payday :-p

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  13. I go shopping once a month and rarely go anywhere else except church the rest of the time. Hubby will occasionally pick up something from the store if he happens to be out. Yea, I can easy go a week!

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  14. My husband and I routinely do unemployment drills, and I can usually go a month or more without shopping. We do however buy gas, milk and fresh fruit, and we still pay our regular bills. It is amazing how much you can spend on fancy coffees and stupid impulse purchases.
    ~geezermom

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  15. golly gee, must be a bunch of sissies living near manhattan if that is all one can expect is one week of no spending money...i live way out in the sticks and i normally spend no money for six weeks to months at a time...with gas prices the way they are i can eek out enough gas fumes to keep me going for two months now...and if it is a really short trip like to a neighboring farm or the church down the road i walk or ride a bike. i fill the deep freezer once a year (did this just yesterday) and have enough shelf stored stuff to last me a year...and will be canning more stuff at harvest... i make all my own clothing or most of it anyway...went fifteen yrs before buying new underwear...some would think that is shameful...it has been longer since i bought a new pair of jeans and i just replaced my ten yr. old shoes. thing is...i am not a cheapskate..when i buy, i buy the best quality i can get and i just take care of it, make it last, repair it if needed, and so on. i am not a wealthy person, but neither am i in poverty. it is a lifestyle that i like.

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  16. It scares me that anyone would think that is a challenge.

    Xa Lynn

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  17. Perhaps we could teach them about a bi-monthly list or a once a month. But the do have standards to maintain and all so our "flyover country" help would not be appreciated. We all know all those city folk are much smater than us country bumpkins. Heck you did notice she wanted folks within the NY city concept and Going a week without spending cash for most preppers is a joke and we do it every damn nomth if not more.
    Hell we share shopping lists and coupons for a a week. I'm trying to be nice but it's a freeking joke. You are worried that folks are paying inflationary prices built by your Fed. Reserve and Bloombergs attack on actual fresh food. Hey I think bloomberg is an idiot but a majority of you gave him power. You win! now will you go away!

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  18. Milk would kill the deal for me (AND being a man) since my six daughters go through close to two gallons a day. I'll admit to helping with that consumption. Even with stocking up ahead, if I shoved 14 gallons of milk in my fridge (doubt it would fit), I certainly wouldn't have room for any other groceries.

    A more difficult challenge at my place would be going a week without milk.

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  19. Milk would kill the deal for me (AND being a man) since my six daughters go through close to two gallons a day. I'll admit to helping with that consumption. Even with stocking up ahead, if I shoved 14 gallons of milk in my fridge (doubt it would fit), I certainly wouldn't have room for any other groceries.

    A more difficult challenge at my place would be going a week without milk.

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  20. I couldn't do it, but only because we have children with special needs so I have to drive an hour each way, twice a week, to therapy which requires gas and copays. But, other than that, really? A week? Whooooo, so not hard.

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  21. Heck, its easy if you're broke, been there done that and would have the T shirt if I'd a had the 10 bucks...

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  22. The fact that I could easily go a week without spending money is more because I have 4 children under 5 than my frugal nature. Someone can be frugal but when its easy to pop into a store to get that one thing, they may do it. I've heard of frugalness really working like that when you are disciplined. Only buy what you need WHEN you need it. Me, on the other hand, it takes an act of congress to get my brood through a store. I grocery shop once a month. When I garden my kids can act like hooligans and no one cares. We don't live in the sticks. We homestead a single acre immediately outside of city limits and can ride our bikes on sidewalks from our house to a library and a whole variety of stores. My guess is many of your readers would shop more regularly if it were as convenient to. We live very simply and I can honestly say that if I had my choice and could pop into a store easily, I would do so weekly and only buy exactly what I needed just for that week (aside from basic neccessities for preparedness and such). Its that its such an ordeal to do so if you live in the sticks or, like me, have a gaggle of young children, that I'd rather minimize my misery and plan for an entire month.

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  23. One week only? I plan my winter trips, so I can go 3 weeks without leaving the house, and have gone 4, easily. I don't need "salad" every day, it's nice, but we have an assortment of vegetables that keep us healthy, and I try to keep them in forms that will "keep".

    Not leaving the house in a vehicle is easy, when you like taking care of your home and have more fun being wife, mother, teacher, homemaker than shoppping. I HATE shopping, always have.

    sidetracksusie

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  24. Yeah, in Manhattan this is a challenge; not because of the ability to do so, but because of the lifestyle most people lead. The average day here is something like: go to work, get breakfast on the way, buy lunch out, go out after work with friends to a bar or for dinner, then go home and sleep.
    I don't ascribe to that lifestyle, but even for me it's very difficult. Just to get to work costs 2.50 (a little less if you buy your subway pass monthly) so spending nothing in a day is just a lie any way you slice it.
    I'd venture to say that spending nothing in a day is impossible... unless you play around with accounting. Heck, even taxes can be calculated down to the day.

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  25. I find it stupid for a different reason from the rest of you.

    Because if you're not completely off grid, you spend money nearly every minute. You're turning on the lights, you're running the water, your phone is hooked up, your Internet account is active. You are spending money constantly.

    Dumb, meaningless challenge.

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  26. It made me laugh hysterically! My husbands retired the first of February so he would be free for spring gardening chores and chicks even tho he doesn't start receiving benefits til Aug. - that will be no spending (with the exception of property taxes and phone bill) for 6 months. We live off grid and have plenty of firewood and a large pantry so call me naive but I'm not really anticipating a huge problem. It helps that we live 45 miles from a tiny store and 140 miles from a city with a mall or walmart. No income = no spending!

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  27. i think family size and available storage make a huge difference in how long a family can go without shopping.

    in our current circumstances, we could go for a week, but not longer than that. when we lived in a big country house with room for two fridges, a chest freezer, and tons of storage, we could go for a month. but now our family of nine is living in a small trailer with hardly any storage and just one average-sized fridge. hubby gets paid every two weeks, so i shop for canned/dry goods twice a month. i do a big shop for meat, bread, dairy and produce once a week, and then another smaller trip later in the week to re-stock on milk and fruit. it's a headache, and costs us more in gas, but it's where we are now. :)

    Birdy

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  28. Keep us posted on who they choose and how they do!

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  29. A week? Is that a joke? Who can't seriously go a week without spending money? Let's make it interesting and try a whole month. We live in the middle of nowhere and we quite often don't get to the store for more than a week.

    What is wrong with these people to offer such a dumb challenge?

    How about we challenge them to work on a farm for a month. Maybe then spending money won't be such a major part of their lives.

    Jim The Clown

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  30. Wow, you Idaho people are so much better than all of us poor city folk with our shopping every day for fresh vegetables - seeing as anything you buy in my area will spoil in a day and I can plant my own stuff but it only grows three months a year.

    The judgement that is on this blog and the comments is astounding. Not everyone lives the same and we shouldn't be judgmental of other people's lives. I have NO desire to ever live in the country and be more than 10 minutes from a hospital. Would I like to be more self-sufficient? Probably. But I really like being a part of a community that helps each other out. If I don't have time to plow my driveway after a snowstorm, my neighbor does it for me. If she is out of town, I pick up her mail. If I get into a car wreck, I like knowing that I can bike or take the bus to my job.

    I Know i would have trouble with that challenge. I'm single and I only make enough food for a few days as I like my food fresh and healthy. I also don't have that much space to store massive amounts of food.

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