Giving Up Shopping for Lent | Final Update

Happy Easter (a little late)! Lent is over! I saw this through to the end but then forgot to update. When I was asked by the 5th person how things went I figured it was probably best to write a final post.

So did I make it? The strictest answer is no but I still think I did a pretty darn good job of it. I did buy a few things. I kept to things that were either a) absolutely necessary (medicine for when I came down with the flu, shoes for a certain son of mine who grew a size during Lent.) b) a deal on something I needed in the future that was too good to pass up (school uniforms) and c) a few basic food essentials- namely bread and eggs. And I was doing so so well but then I went a bit astray. You see I saw bunny ears for cars, you know like the reindeer antlers you see around Christmas? Well I made a stupid whim purchase– $9.99 on Amazon and a day and a half later I was the proud owner of a very dignified and grown up adult like costume for my already mom-i-fied minivan. Yup, that’s where I fell off the wagon. It happened with only a week to go too.

All things considered, I think this was appropriately challenging and an effective sacrifice for the spirit of Lent. It was hard and it led to a lot of self-reflection. It made me realize how often I browse and it was freeing not to be tempted by wanting stuff. It was also time saving to skip the grocery routine. I’m happy to say that while we ran out of many things we did not run out of food. In fact I was a little disappointed that we didn’t clear out more so I bagged up a bunch of things and donated them instead. I saw the bottom of the deep freezer for the first time in many months and we ate a lot of things that would have otherwise continued sitting on the shelf of the pantry indefinitely.

What things did I miss most?

I missed sweets. There were no cookies or fun snack foods for the last month or so (with a couple exceptions of other people bringing us stuff because they are super nice like that.) That’s a very decent diet plan actually. If it’s not there you can’t eat it and feel guilty about it. We ran out of chips, crackers, goldfish, and pretzels too.

What things did we truly need to replenish?

Running out of bread was a no go. I didn’t realize how often my dear oldest son eats a PB&J before bed. Since overall, he doesn’t eat enough I didn’t want to discourage that. Plus, when you run out of other lunch type foods, sandwiches are really the only option. So we got fresh bread a few times. We also ran out of eggs which we eat a lot. Could we have done without? Yes, but it may have prevented the kids from eating as much as they should. We ended up fine on milk. I’m sure they wouldn’t have minded more bananas and apples but they also ate ALL of the fresh ones I bought after this whole thing was over and none went to waste so maybe that was a good lesson? Time will tell.

Did the kids get annoyed about not having things?

Not really, no. I had given them a lot of warning about this so when things ran out they ran out. There was some fighting over the lasts of things but they were fine. Actually it really limited the asking for things because they knew I wasn’t setting foot in a store or ordering anything.

Finally, where was the first place I shopped?

We went to Lowes on Good Friday to purchase some basic home repair items and then we went to Target and loaded up on fresh fruits, vegetables, yogurt, cheese, eggs, bread, meat, and other things like cat litter. I definitely didn’t go crazy or anything. I find that while I still love shopping, I didn’t miss the list making and meal planning at all.

Overall, I hope to do this again next year and this time not slip up but try to make it the whole time without any unnecessary spending at all!

Thanks for following J

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