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Hey everyone! It’s Stacey writing today’s post. Today was payday for my restaurant job — woohoo! I deposited 75% of my check into savings, kept back a little over 10% for tithe and offering, and the rest went into my pocket for a little “fun money” — which to me, equates to “coffee.” You have to understand how important the concept of “mad money” is to me. My husband could cash an entire check and put it in the bank without missing a cent of it. Not me. It’s just the way God wired me, and my own money personality. “Mad money” is SUPER important to me. Seriously. When I don’t have a little fun money in my pocket — even if it’s a couple dollars — I feel frustrated and somewhat powerless over my financial situation.

It’s not like I go overboard when it comes to fun money. I just need a little…even if it’s as pathetic as checking the couch for spare change and finding enough to get a dollar brew of coffee at Mickey D’s. As we’ve tightened our collective financial belts, I have found some creative and less expensive alternatives to the “evil S,” as my husband calls Starbucks, for my caffeine fix.  For example, I can go to Big Y and stock up on Frappucinos, which cost me a little over $1.50 a piece, versus the $2+ you’ll pay at Starbucks. I’ve also found that I really enjoy a pumpkin coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts, which is in season at this time of the year, and costs about $1.58. I’ve also learned to taper off the sugar in my brews. Not only is not sugaring down my coffee better for my waistline, it costs me much less when I order a plain coffee “black,” as opposed to a “grande skinny white mocha, extra hot, no whip” at the Evil S.

I say all that to say this: if you are the kind of person who is like my husband and can squirrel away money like nobody’s business, count yourself blessed. If, however, you find yourself saying, “I really want to pay off my debts, but I need a little flexibility in my budget for some mad money,” don’t feel as though you have to beat yourself up for your personality makeup. Just make sure you and your spouse communicate about money and what spending or saving means to each of you personally. For example: to my husband, his way of showing me he loves me is by saving me money on a purchase, or by purchasing something that will save me money in the long run. But for me, there is no better way to show me that you love me than to purchase me something on the fly just because you were thinking of me, even if it is somewhat trivial or seemingly useless. It makes me feel loved.

God designed us all with different money personalities, and what makes the difference as we journey toward debt freedom is not whether we’re a spender or a saver, but rather whether we are working together with our spouse, being honest, and always using money to show that we love them — whether it’s spontaneously buying a Starbucks drink for them or stopping by the bank to deposit their check as a whole.

Here’s to one day closer to debt freedom! *sips Dunkin’ Donuts coffee*