I always think, "This month I'm not going to spend a lot of money, because the world is in turmoil and no purchase could possibly seem important," and then I spend a lot of money.
Misc Office Stuff - $40
Toward the beginning of the year, I decided to spiff up my work space a little. I have a metal wall, so I got some magnets to put on it, including rainbow-colored glass magnets, magnetic hooks, and dry-erase magnets. They didn't cost a lot, but I like them a lot; they make things more colorful and useful.
2 Fashion Scarves - $21
I wear these at work. They're inexpensive, but cute. I keep them at work and therefore end up wearing them more often than the ones I keep at home.
5 Scoop Neck Cotton T-shirts - $75
I decided I was going to do a new thing where I'd wear scoop neck T-shirts as undershirts underneath my work sweaters, instead of spaghetti-strap tank tops. It's a little harder to make the necklines look good together, but I was hoping the existence of sleeves in the underarm area would absorb more sweat and protect my wool sweaters so I can wear them more than once between washes. I think they do! It's going pretty well. I don't know if this will help me get more than $75 worth of wear out of my sweaters, though. It would probably be a better deal if I hadn't already bought a bunch of tank tops, which are now mostly obsolete under The New System.
Canvas Bird Tote - $22
An impulse purchase from the online Audubon Society web store after I found out my membership gives me 10% off. It's nice to have a big tote that I like (it's teal! with a bird on it!) but yeah, probably not needed.
Merino Hoody - $80
I gave my wife my blessing to wear my merino hoody as much as she wanted, and she wears it a lot. I wore it a lot over the summer, not so much in the winter, so I don't mind… but when I saw the same model in one of My Colors on sale at Sierra Trading Post, I got another one IN CASE WE BOTH WANT TO WEAR IT AT THE SAME TIME. This is a classic Not Urgent & Probably Not Necessary Purchase. But I know I like this hoody.
Down Coat - $172
Another Probably Not Urgent purchase, but again: sale. And this time, the purchase was more arguably needed as my current coat is slowly falling apart. I could probably have gotten another few months out of it, though.
Nylon Shorts - $49
What a lot of money for shorts! And it's a weird purchase for January, too. I actually bought these after resolving to only buy things I'm going to use right away, but I promoted these from the "For Summer" wishlist to the "Right Now" wishlist after I found myself searching for a pair of exercise shorts I could wear for indoor workouts. These are relaxed fit but stretchy nylon shorts and I think they are going to be really good for a ton of use cases: workouts, running, summer hiking, going to the beach, and so on. But we will see in my One Year Purchase Review how often I ended up using them.
Wool Lounge Pants - $60
I was hoping to find pants that would bridge the gap between around-the-house pants and could-wear-out casual pants. When I got these, the cut definitely looked way more sweatpantsy than I expected, with the odd twist that they were made of a woven wool material that reminded me a bit of unlined suit pants. They should be the worst of both worlds, but I loved them and didn't want to take them off. My wife says she wouldn't be ashamed to be seen with me in person when I'm wearing them, and I think she might be lying but I don't care. I'm probably wearing them as you read this.
Ebooks - $40
I keep buying baby-sitters club books help
Botany Books - $40
Some physical books! I signed up to volunteer as a rare plant finder, and while I still don't know if they will select me -- prooobably not given my lack of experience or knowledge -- I figured I'd brush up on my plant-finding. This hobby will definitely get more play in spring and beyond, but I can use winter months to read.
Total Spend - $609
Another stay-under-$500 fail!