Frugal Fail: A Fast Food Confession

Now that the Thanksgiving holiday weekend is over and we’re heading back to work today, WE HAVE A CONFESSION.  As you all know, Mr. MMM and I have dedicated ourselves to analyzing every. single. purchase.  BUT, (that’s the eraser word.  it erases everything you said before it.  try it) we are not perfect, and we have sinned…

Forgive Us Frugal Friends For We Have Sinned

xmas greens

You can’t blame me for wanting to celebrate the death of this hideous color

Remember last week when I repainted our entire kitchen on Saturday, on a whim?  Well, after my magnificent accomplishment, I wanted a reward!  Mr. MMM was away working for most of the day and when he came home he was quite impressed with my handy work.  He mentioned cooking, and I suggested going out for a bite to celebrate!  After all, I LOVE eating out, and I deserved it after this feat.

Minimizing Expense

fast food 2

Mini Monster eating at McD’s over the summer…before we turned frugal

Since I didn’t completely lose my frugal antennas, I suggested we go cheap and just do a fast food run.  This inevitably meant McDonald’s, since I used to be an addict.  Don’t judge.  It also wasn’t a hard sell since we had Mini Monster’s belly to appease, too.

Even though it isn’t in our non-existent budget, we all agreed, hopped in our little car, and headed over to The Golden Arches.  I was so excited.  My taste buds were hopping before setting one foot inside.  I was determined to only spend a couple of bucks.  I tried to go cheap.  I really did.  But, Mini Monster wanted a happy meal and Mr. MMM has a B.I.G. appetite.  Ugh!  If it were just me, I could’ve gotten out of there with only a few dollars spent.  This was NOT that kind of night.  After ordering, our total was $19.05.  Oh. My. God.  What did we do?!  $19.05?  I could’ve used that money for Christmas!  I could’ve used it towards debt repayment or towards investments!  I could’ve flushed it down the toilet and it would’ve been a better use for it, arguably, especially with the health kick that most of the country is on.

I was so distraught over the $19.05 that I couldn’t even enjoy my chicken McNuggets 🙁  It also could have been attributed to me losing my taste for the place and just not enjoying it as much as I did when I was an addict.  I’m only half kidding, by the way 🙂  Either way, I was a mess that we fell off our frugal wagon.

Don’t Beat Yourself Up

The moral of the story is…drum roll…Don’t Beat Yourself Up.  We all make mistakes along our frugal journey.  Most of us made plenty of mistakes that have led us to this path in the first place.  That’s probably why my reaction to this one fast food run was not proportional to the mistake at hand.  The point is, get back on the frugal horse and don’t look back.

Newsflash:  We (and probably you, too) will most likely make more stupid “fast food” mistakes in the future.  That doesn’t mean we still won’t hit our FIRE goal or that we should just give up altogether and buy into the American consumerism dream.  We are human.  Humans aren’t perfect.  Own it.  Enjoy the crappy cheeseburger and move on. 

Have you ever fallen off the frugal wagon?  Please tell us we’re not alone. 

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Mad Money Cat NOT loving his photo opp

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Lisa is the creator and resident writer at Mad Money Monster. She's a mother, scientist, and financial guru on a mission to save Generation X from working until they die!

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8 comments… add one
  • katrun27 Dec 4, 2015, 12:15 pm

    Kudos for your open “confession”! Of course there are worse slip-ups than one fast-food meal, but it’s funny how much our perspective can change when aiming for FIRE. A healthy response is to not berate ourselves when we fail, but own it and move on. And on a side note, isn’t it ridiculous how pricey McDonald’s can be?

    • Mad Money Monster Dec 4, 2015, 1:54 pm

      Yes, McDonald’s is quite pricey, especially when you have a grown man in the mix. 🙂

  • Claudia @ Two Cup House Nov 30, 2015, 4:35 pm

    When we’re in uber-frugal mode, I know exactly how you feel. I’m trying very hard not to be so hard on myself! 🙂

    • Mad Money Monster Dec 1, 2015, 12:36 pm

      Yeah, it’s tough to give yourself a breather every now and then…especially when you’re a part of frugal communities. 🙂

  • Howto$tuffYourPig Nov 30, 2015, 3:41 pm

    I think it’s okay once in a while! ☺

  • Matt @ The Resume Gap Nov 30, 2015, 1:54 pm

    Hey, if your financial blunder of the season is a meal for three for $19, I think you’re doing ok! Granted, I’m not sure I could enjoy those floppy chicken McNuggets at any price. Not my favorite!

    • Mad Money Monster Dec 1, 2015, 12:34 pm

      Ha! Thanks for the positive words. Yeah, I’m not enjoying like I used to. I suppose I’m finally growing up.

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