I've been starting to pay more attention to how much money I spend regularly on "unnecessities." I know that's not a word, but I don't know what to call it. What I mean are things that I don't need but have come to spend money on as a matter of course--things that I used to consider luxuries, back when I had less money and more sense.
For example: it hit me this week that every morning I spend around $3 (maybe a little more) on a latte I buy in my workplace's basement cafe. That's at least $15 a week, $60 a month, just on coffee. A lot of the time (but not always) I buy myself a pastry as well. That's another $2. Not sure how much that is a week, since I don't do that everyday, every week, but it adds up. So today as they were making my latte I said to myself that this is the last one. The Farewell Latte.
This isn't the last one I'll ever have, mind you. I may upon occasion decide to go out for coffee. But I'm relegating them (elevating them?) to the status of Treat, the way I did when I just got out of college and didn't have much money. My roommate and I would occasionally go out after work for "yuppie coffee," as we called it, and wind up at a local cafe with big cups of coffee, pieces of biscotti, jazz music, and conversation. It was an event, because neither of us could afford to do it more than once a month.
I'm going to learn how to make them at home. Maybe I'll switch to cafe au lait, since that doesn't require espresso or a thing to make the milk all foamy. We'll see. Maybe I can find a cheap espresso machine somewhere.
I just took a sip of my Farewell Latte, and you know what? Knowing that it was the last one I'll have for a while has made it taste better somehow.