Let’s discuss my new boots

bootsblogOK, those of you who follow me on twitter or who read my January net worth update have heard that at some point in there I spent a “godawful amount of money on boots.” However, accounting for that was mysteriously missing from the January update! I promised that I’d explain myself “sometime next month” and wouldn’t you know it, next month is practically over (one thing you can say for February is that it moves fast, especially when you spend a quarter of it traveling.) I figured I’d better get down to it if I wanted to beat my deadline.

Check out my net worth graph. January looks awfully fishy for a month in which I reported no debt and a net worth gain of $1500, doesn’t it?

Screen Shot 2015-02-21 at 10.11.28 AM(February looks great, on the other hand! Despite the car repair, it’s gone quite well and I still have another paycheck coming in. Hoping to end the month well above an $18K net worth.)

So, here’s what happened. I reported back in December, when I became debt-free, that I was reacting to being debt-free mostly by wanting to buy things 🙂 Specifically, I had some tall black boots in mind. I was feeling like I should probably push back against that…but then I remembered that I had a birthday coming up. And then I realized I was getting a nice tax refund. And rewarding myself for reaching the end of my debt payoff didn’t seem so bad. And the kind of boot I had in mind seemed like it would be pretty darn great to have.

I decided, then, that I would get boots for my birthday/debt-free combo. My parents gave me a contribution towards them, as my present, and I also took $200 of my tax refund, and the combination of all that money bought the boots, some wax/cream to help care for them, and a six-pack of socks. I don’t really want to reveal exactly how much I paid since that would tell you how much my parents sent me and for some reason that just seems weird, even though I am totally open about income I make myself; however, let’s just say I didn’t pay full price, but I also didn’t find some crazy half-off sale.

I ordered four pairs of boots off the internet and they got to my house the day after my birthday. In the end it was really no contest; I’d ordered one much cheaper pair of Borns that were sort of ok, but not nearly as nice as the ones I ended up keeping, and three different styles of Frye boots, one of which didn’t fit (tight in the calf and loose in the ankle), and one of which fit beautifully but had a big chunky zipper that I thought took the boot too far towards the “casual” side of the casual/dressy sweet spot I was aiming for, where I could wear them both for work and for tooling around town. Also, those were $100 more than the ones I ended up keeping, so that was nice 🙂

Drumroll, please:

bootsI really like them. They fit quite well, they’re comfortable to walk in, and even though there’s no zipper (which I thought was going to be mandatory for a better fit at the ankle and for ease of getting on and off) they come off pretty easily and don’t make my ankle feel like it’s rolling around in nothing. And they are beautiful.

Anyway, it took a while for all of that to get processed through the financial system. At the end of January, there was still like $1000 of boots hanging out on my credit card waiting for the return to be logged in, which is why my net worth chart looks so messy. Also I was waiting for my tax refund to come in so I could pay off my portion of the purchase (I’d deposited my parents’ check and paid that part down already.)

So, there is the story of my boots! They are not going to appear on my February balance sheet either (since everything was managed through windfall money and not out of a budget category) so this will be it for them in terms of appearances on the blog. In real life, I expect them to make many, many, many appearances.

27 thoughts on “Let’s discuss my new boots

  1. I think once I hit “debt free” I’ll want to reward myself with something big, too! While clothing and shoes aren’t really my thing, I always have a list of places I want to visit, and shows I’d love to see, so I totally understand. No judgement here! And happy belated birthday! 🙂

    1. thesingledollar says:

      A trip would be a wonderful way to reward yourself! And thanks, it was a good birthday 🙂

  2. Jenna says:

    Absolutely beautiful! I’m sure you’ll get a ton of use out of them as well. I think it’s a great debt-free/birthday present.

    1. thesingledollar says:

      That’s my hope! I’m glad I figured out how to do it in a way that made sense 🙂

  3. Alicia says:

    Of course it’s Frye for the win! They’re my dream boots, and maybe one day I’ll get a pair as well. Except the $500 price tag makes me hyperventilate at this point 🙂

    1. thesingledollar says:

      I spent less than $500 🙂 But yes, they were definitely on the pricey end. They’d better last for a long time! 🙂

  4. Good quality boots are definitely worth the price tag – you can wear them with almost anything/everything! Definitely a great investment for a celebration. Congrats, and happy belated birthday!

    1. thesingledollar says:

      Thanks! I love them. I’ve never had anything like them before 🙂

  5. Christine says:

    Frye boots last forever! It’s a lot of money to put upfront but it’s a great investment. I bought another pair of boots last season for $150 and they’re already in bad shape. I’ll probably donate them come spring. Happy belated!

    1. thesingledollar says:

      I’m hoping the cost is going to significantly amortize over time! I intend to wear them basically every other day all year round except when it’s snowing 🙂

  6. Uh, those are gorgeous! Great choice!

    1. thesingledollar says:

      Aren’t they great? I’m super into them 🙂

  7. This post makes me chuckle. You are clearly so delighted with your new boots, and I’m happy for you! But I think you feel a little bit scandalous – or at least like you’re having your cake and eating it too – dealing with a slight guilt but knowing it’s too good to pass on. Am I right? The timing is wonderful. Getting out of debt is definitely something to celebrate! And happy birthday! AND happy tax return : ) Now you just go and start making those appearances. Enjoy your boots thoroughly!

    1. thesingledollar says:

      Hee, I am delighted. It’s not much guilt, really 🙂 I was feeling kind of grumpy and deprived about putting my entire tax return into retirment and as soon as I decided to spend some of it on these boots I got all happy again. I think I needed to do something cool to celebrate. They’re fun.

  8. Okay, maybe it’s a little weird being the first guy commenting on boots, but I do come from the land of Nordstrom and we, uh, have a bit of a boot problem in the house. Anyway, I’d imagine you’d get a lot of use out of a pair of Frye’s, since they’re nigh indestructible. Paying for quality should pay off in the long run, though — I finally gave in and bought a spendier pair of quality dress shoes some years ago and no longer had to buy a cheap new pair annually. And yes, I do feel pretty when I wear them. Also, you can’t argue with nice boots.

    Also, happy belated birthday!

    1. thesingledollar says:

      Thank you! And I always think my guy friends should comment on my boots 🙂 I hope I will get a lot of use out of them — not just because the construction is high-quality, but because they make me feel good when I wear them; I like the richness of the leather. I think it was worth the investment, and have never minded paying more for good quality. Yay on the dress shoes — I hear they make the man, or something?

  9. I have never owned a pair of Frye’s boots before but they sure do look nice. Happy belated birthday and you better sport those boots like a true runway model. I love clothes, shoes, and bags and a part of my motivation to become debt free is one day to be able to skip the sale rack and buy what I want. Of course in moderation. Once in a while its cool to treat yourself so you keep those boots a walking…

    1. thesingledollar says:

      It’s really nice to have the option of buying something good quality every now and then! I will be wearing them allllllllll the time. 🙂

  10. Make sure to break them in!

    As someone who spent many years in boots, there is nothing better than a nice, high quality, comfortable pair of boots…its like pillows for your feet.

    There is nothing wrong with buying quality, allowing yourself something nice is OK – especially when you are saving everywhere else.

    1. thesingledollar says:

      Yup, I’m going slow with them — got any boot-breaking-in tips, as an expert? I’ve never done this properly before; the way I usually break shoes in is just to walk in them for short periods at first, gradually ramping up to wearing them around all day.

  11. My birthday’s coming soon, and now I want boots! I think your blog may be influencing me thus-wise! 🙂

    Happy Birthday to you! Sounds like you had a great one! 😀

    1. thesingledollar says:

      I did have a good one! I’m not a big birthday person usually so it was nice to celebrate a little. I’m not sure whether to apologize for being a bad influence or egg you on 🙂

  12. I love me a good pair of boots. Just be sure not to get too “reward” happy, it’s a slippery slope 🙂

    1. thesingledollar says:

      I know, right? I settled on ONE reward and figure I can keep it to that 🙂

  13. Michelle says:

    Considering how much use you’ll get out of them, there’s no judgement on my end! Quality before quantity. Now, you can continue to focus on the big picture 🙂

    1. thesingledollar says:

      Of all people, I’m glad you approve! You have great taste 🙂

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