no giftcards, please. (or: how i started cleaning and found $252.50 of forgotten money.)

i set a new year’s – not resolution, but – challenge for myself: to see how long i could go without buying anything new.

(and i might have already completely failed. but more on that in my next post. mainly because i’m too embarrassed to own up to it yet.)

as part of my effort during the first couple weeks of 2018, i quickly realized that the first step to not buying anything is to use what i already have. and the best way to use what i already have is to know my options. so i started to get organized and put everything in its rightful place.

in case you want to join along, i present to you (drum roll please):

shawna’s 7 step process to getting your shit organized

  1. empty out all of your shit (pockets and bags, boxes and catch alls)
  2. sort all of your shit by category (i.e. clothing from shoes from makeup)
  3. sort your shit again to create subcategories (i.e. separate your lip shit from you eye shit)
  4. realize how much shit you have
  5. rediscover shit you forgot you owned
  6. celebrate and be thankful for alll of your shit
  7. but, mostly, realize how much time and money you waste collecting shit

tl;dr – i have far too much shit.

i found three sticks of deodorant. one in the bathroom. one in a purse (for that b.o. on the go). one in a box of junk. (and i’m convinced i have at least one more in my car. four sticks of deodorant, y’all. at least i smell good.)

i also found a stack of old cards. business cards. customer punch cards. hotel key cards. things once valuable, now destined for the trash.

until i saw the gift cards.

at first, i figured they were all balance-free junk that was never tossed. but on a hunch, i called to check the balances.

here’s what i found:

  • trader joe’s – $10
  • chipotle – $.39 (not even enough for a side of guac – heartbroken)
  • peet’s – $20
  • in’n’out – $1.73
  • jamba juice – $5
  • bevmo – $10
  • nordstrom – $49.13
  • macy’s – $100
  • macy’s – $31.25
  • itunes – $25

$252.50 in forgotten money! imagine!

it’s one more indication of just how unintentionally i had been living my life. to have that amount of value just sitting around like trash in a forgotten bag in a forgotten corner of my room. what a shame.

it’s nice to be rewarded with treasure as i start down this path of intentional living. but there’s definitely some guilt attached.

while my new year’s challenge was a big fat fail, i’m still going to keep trying to use what i have before i buy anything new… after i redeem these gift cards. they’ve waited long enough for their chance to shine, don’t you think?



intentionally shawna

p.s. shoutout to all my exes’ parents for the gifts that keep on giving. (my family doesn’t shop at macy’s, and they definitely don’t do gift cards.)

where to begin.

as i mentioned in my first post, this space was created to document my journey (read: keep me honest) as i attempt to live intentionally.

that’s a pretty big, not to mention pretty immeasurable, undertaking.

where to begin – and how? it’s helpful to have a strategy, but how much planning is too much planning? knowing myself, this always seems to be my first challenge – not to procrastinate under the guise of preparation.

so, to avoid falling into analysis paralysis, i started right away.

and, to avoid psyching myself out, i started small.

i identified the first two themes i want to tackle: food and fashion. and i identified my first two goals for each.

for food:

  • to eat what is right, not what is convenient
  • to eat when i am hungry, not out of boredom

(translation: fine, mom!! i’ll stop spending all my money on postmates and empty calories.)

for fashion:

  • to purchase with intent, not with impulse
  • to wear with joy, eliminating anything that is “less than”

(translation: gurlll, stop shopping when you have plenty and get rid of that dress from high school already. it doesn’t fit half of your left ass cheek.)

and little by little, i’ve started to pay attention.

what is an area of your life that could use some more attention and intent? what is a small goal you can set for yourself this week?

how do you think we’ll do?

stay tuned.


intentionally shawna