Hattie Garlick, writing in yesterdays Telegraph, has vowed that she will not be spending a single penny on her two year old son in 2013. Interestingly she made this decision prior to being made redundant and finances I imagine becoming more tightly stretched.
My initial incredulousness reduced slightly as she laid out her plan:
- Clothes will come only from swaps with friends or bundles from free-cycle.
- Toys the same.
- Little Garlick will be getting no rice cakes this year and apparently will only be consuming portions of the three meals eaten by his parents.
- Haircuts will be done at home, as will all activities. Soft-play centres are no longer on the menu this year.
Actually, she might just manage it.
I absolutely could not. I know this to my bones. I could manage with the food and haircut plan but would fail miserably with the rest. I do however know that there is a huge amount of unnecessary waste in my own house and a bit of belt-tightening would not go amiss. This article has certainly got me thinking.
I don’t necessarily think that what she is doing is wrong, and for many families this may seem an entirely sensible approach.
But will you be denying yourself the same pleasures all year Ms Garlick? Really?
Before you buy that next Vanilla Latte remember you could probably have bought a jumper for your son from any major supermarket. Or, heaven forbid, a toy.
And a little bit of joy may be lurking in the nearest packet of rice-cakes.
So, what do you think? Could you go a whole year and spend nothing on your child?