I was always a really good saver…or maybe I just wasn’t a big spender. I remember working part time at the grocery store during high school. I had money for lunch at school, the movies, ice-skating and gas for my car. I was so self-sufficient. I even had a savings account…a growing one at that. Every week, I would deposit my check minus my “spending money.” That, in itself, is no big deal; commendable maybe, but no big deal.
The point is I had “extra money”…money I didn’t even need! I kept five dollars in the glove compartment of my car for emergency money. The ashtray in my car accumulated with the change from purchases. I had a basket on my bureau filled with coins. It seemed about every few months I would gather the coins, roll them and deposit them into my savings account. Today however, I’m scrambling to find two quarters for the kids milk money every morning. When did this happen? Why don’t I ever seem to have spare change (let alone extra money)?
I started pondering this because last week my oldest son left for the Air Force and I was left with the chore of cleaning his room. After the initial clean up of unmatched socks, old school papers, and guitar picks etc., I came across a small cloth bag. I thought it was filled with marbles from when he was a little boy. It was filled with coins. Then I found another one also filled with coins. On his shelf was a container overflowing with coins. They were everywhere! When all was said and done, I deposited $164 in his savings account. All from extra change. I, on the other hand, never have extra change to save.
Participating in the Savings Challenge has made me aware of where our money goes. We have an allowance. We set aside a certain amount of money each week for upcoming bills. I think twice before I make a purchase and now I have my own spare change basket. After a purchase, I take the change and put it in the basket. It’s amazing how quickly my collection is growing. Every little bit does make a difference!
How do you save your spare change? What is the most you ever saved?
This is an entry from the 2009 Connex Savings Challenge Blog, a place where you can keep up with the Savings Challenge families and they can share great financial tips, ways they are saving and budgeting and much more! For more blog entries and information on the Connex Savings Challenge, visit www.connexcu.org.