Throughout my blogging "career," I have shared my New Year's Resolutions. You can read all about 2015's resolutions if you want, but today I just want to focus on one: Stay out of Target in 2015. Very simple. I decided I was not going to go into Target and buy things there.
Readers, I've done it (so far) and, readers, it's easy. No big deal.
Those I have talked with about this resolution have had various reactions ranging from supportive to amused to annoyed to, I suspect, eye-rolling me in their heads. I'm not trying to start a movement -- just trying to spend less money and to be less indiscriminate about all the stuff rolling into my life.
Here's what I used to buy at Target and my coping mechanisms for 2015.
1. Beautifully-labeled and great-smelling cleaning products from Mrs. Meyers, Method, and J.R. Watkins. I signed up for epantry.com and receive every-other-month shipments of Mrs. Meyers and Method products for minimal shipping costs. Have I missed out on some Target-exclusive scents? Yes, and I feel sad/anxious thinking about it but not anxious enough to break my resolution. Bonus: the Method Wood for Good spray that I adore and use a ton is much cheaper at epantry.
2. C9 workout clothes. I have coped with not purchasing C9 workout clothes from Target by wearing the C9 workout clothes that I already purchased from Target in years past.
3. Laundry detergent and fabric softener. Two different people have asked, "If you're not shopping at Target, where do you buy your laundry stuff and cleaning products?" I buy these items at the grocery store in the long aisle where they sell laundry stuff and cleaning products and sometimes at Costco.
4. Stationary, party favors, and other assorted novelty items with orange clearance stickers. I haven't evolved into that ideal person who writes lots of notes and hosts lots of parties so I am still sitting pretty without need of further spending on these items.
5. Kids' essentials like white undershirts, socks, jeans, and girls' leggings that will get a hole in them between the seventh and tenth time they are worn. I used to buy some of these items at Kohl's and some at Target and now I buy them all at Kohl's, usually with multiple discounts.
6. Fancy pens and sharpies. It's not a problem yet, but I have been rediscovering OfficeMax.
7. Random grocery items. The random food items I purchased at Target are purchased at Jewel, Costco, and Sam's Club, just as they've always been. I never did do my "full grocery shop" at Target.
8. Toys and birthday gifts. Plenty of other options: local toy store, Amazon, movie theater for gift cards. Plus, I have been buying more clothes as birthday gifts, especially for boys. I have found performance tees and athletic shorts at Kohl's, Costco, and Sam's that I think make good birthday gifts for boys. Who can't use more comfortable play clothes? Plus, Kohl's has lots of choices for local team gear like Blackhawks or White Sox stuff.
9. The DVDs you see near the store entrance at the Villa Park Target. I think I bought one DVD at Costco earlier this year. Mostly, I am not buying DVDs. No one has cried and said, "But, mom, where are those new DVDs you used to buy us? We'd like to fight about who wants to watch it, lose the case, drop it on the floor of the van, and complain on a road trip that it is too scratched to watch."
10. KIND bars. My go-to spots for Kind Bars are Mariano's (12-pack for $14), Amazon.com (12-pack for $14.68), or Costco (18-pack for about $18, but half of them are Vanilla Bourbon Madgascar which are edible but so lame compared to the Chocolate Sea Salt).
11. Lamp shades. There is not an un-shaded lamp in this entire house and there are several lampshades on reserve.
12. Melamine plates that are on clearance. We continue to eat many meals and snacks upon melamine plates purchased on clearance at Target in years past.
13. Holiday decor. I don't need any more Christmas decor. I really don't give two figs about decorating for Halloween or Harvest time or Easter, and I'm not pretending otherwise.
14. Beauty products and hair stuff. Jewel and Walgreens are my spots.
15. Fountain Diet Coke and possibly an ICEE for any kid who had to come along. Minus the ICEES, these needs are being met.
I can't say that my days of impulse purchases are over. I have probably channeled some of my spendthrift energies into Kohl's, OfficeMax, and Costco. However, these stores have far fewer temptations than Target so I think I am still winning at this resolution.
Will I return in 2016? I think so. Sometimes it is convenient to stop in Target to buy things I need. My plan is to put some parameters on my return: once a month, with a list, and with an awareness that I can live without many of the things within the Target box.
What do my kids think? They miss Target. They went with my husband a couple of months ago, and my older son came home and said, "It was great to smell that Target air." That line convinced me that I was doing the right thing by staying away for a year.
Will I crack in December in the holiday rush? I told myself when I made the resolution that it would be okay to use target.com if necessary. So far, I have not done so, but I guess I might if a much-desired Christmas item needs to be secured there.
What's your Target Practice? Any insights?