Being a blogger and living as if I were on the Truman show means I open myself to criticism. It goes with the territory. Some people ask: how do you do it? Or, why do you do it? Or ask whether it’s all worth it or how can you live like that? The way we live isn’t for everybody. You see, we live on a tight budget. We choose to do that. We are not hard up, low paid, scrimping because there’s no choice but because we want to live that way.
Living on a budget means we don’t spend without planning and we plan, each day, each week, each month, each year and the next few years of our finances. That means we don’t just up and go on mini-breaks, city breaks or cheap deals on Groupon, not because we don’t want to travel but because they are not part of the immediate plans. We don’t ever just think, ‘I’d like that’ and up and off and buy it. We never hear of a new restaurant locally and think, ‘let’s go off and try that place’. We live, what might seems as a very austere life but it’s purposeful and keeping us on track to have a mortgage free life, with a comfortable retirement and adequate savings to buffer any possible difficulties.
So, what does our budgeting by choice mean day by day? We are, to be honest, complete tightwads and proud of it. We get what we can for free, secondhand or at the lowest available prices. We home cook every day with the exception of twice last year in France. We don’t eat takeaways or ready meals and cook from scratch. We believe that a baked potato and beans is a fantastic meal. Our house isn’t cold but don’t think of sitting around without thick jumpers and some woolly socks. We’re clean and tidy but that’s thank to quick timed showers to save on gas and water. I smell nice when I can get perfume at the giveaway price of free and we stay fresh with toiletries, at low cost, from a budget supermarket. As I said, tightwads and proud of it.
Budgeting in the immediate doesn’t look a lot of fun does it? Budgets are not for the here and now, they are for the long term. We’re in this for the long haul and have make the best of our day to day life in all its simplicity. A home cooked meal, the warmth of our wood stove, a walk in the forest or a snooze in the garden in the summer. Budgeting in the long term means, for us, a house as an investment to rent out to supplement two pensions, a house to live in and in comparison to many, an early retirement. You can have comfort when you’re young or when you’re retired and you’d have had a very blessed life if you could have comfort for both. We’ll take the penny pinching now rather when I’m older thank you very much.
So, in answer to the question, does budgeting make life better, we believe it does. It might look a bit dusty round the edges to some people but we’re perfectly happy to play the long game.
Over to you, do you get questions asked of your thrifty life?
Love Froogs xxxxx