Welcome, friends, to another look at my wildly mis-spent finances (or perhaps my wildly misplaced values). Like last year, I started at the beginning of the year and kept track of everything by day. Why? Just for your entertainment, really - as well as my own embarrassment.
As predicted, I seem to have gotten less stuff this year. Rising prices, dwindling selection, all that. But enough preamble! Let's get to it:
Well, there it is. If that's not everything, then it's darn close. There were 122 days in 2009 where I bought something, and the majority of those trips involved multiple purchases at multiple stores - that works out to be a purchase every three days. However, I did a much better job of sticking to my budget: in other words, I was still way over, but I wasn't way way over. Obviously the effort I put into staying on-target helped.
Last year, Toys Я Us was the #1 spot where I bought toys - this year, Wal*Mart pulled alongside, creating a tie. Looking at the breakdown, it was TRU's decision to start carrying "collector" lines (like Minimates and NECA) that kept them in contention, which really says that choice was a smart one.
The biggest surprise for me this year was that I bought nothing at Suncoast or Hot Topic. Both of those used to be pretty reliable outlets for toys, but this year? Not so much. That may also be related to TRU's wider range of products: they start pulling business from "market six" stores like those, and those stores stop ordering, falling back on their main revenue streams. Only one figure from Spencer's? I got more toys mailed to me from Ireland than I bought in a mall this year!
A few notes: a five-figure box set counts as one purchase, but as five figures. Build-A-Figures are not counted in the totals, even if I buy all the pieces to assemble them. Things that I bought for trades aren't included on the list, but the things that I got from trades are. I get a 10% discount from my regular comicshop, which is included. Any coupons or sales have been subtracted before the items go on the list.
Here are some numbers:
Total number of purchases: 352
Total number of figures: 568
Total money spent: $3,345
Average spent per purchase: $9.50
Average spent per figure: $5.89
Average per month: $278.75; 29.33 purchases; 47.33 figures
Average per week: $64.33; 6.77 purchases; 10.92 figures
Average per day: $9.16; .96 purchases; 1.56 figures
TRU: 78 purchases
Wal*Mart: 78 purchases
Target: 58 purchases
Comicshops: 51 purchases
Kmart: 14 purchases
FYE: 13 purchases
Five Below: 9 purchases
Spencer's: 1 purchase
Longest gap between purchases: 10 days (Jan. 31 - Feb. 9)
Most days in a row with purchases: 4 (Oct. 17-20)
Most expensive day: July 1 ($291.34)
There were still quite a few things I wanted to get and never did, but I do enjoy everything I got. With any luck, 2010 will be even closer to staying on-budget.