Friday Flashback

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Tonight I want to share this post from 2011.  It is rather timely as I have noticed that one of the consistently highest categories of our spending is ‘house and garden’.  There is always something that needs doing.

This morning I went to Maleny.  I had several things to do and they all cost money.  I began to think about this and realised that we would have none of these expenses if we lived in the city.  Mind you there would be other costs, and wild horses would not drag me back to suburbia.

I picked up our 4 new point of lay pullets, otherwise known as the new chickens.  Here they are.

2011-12-12 01Then I paid for the repairs to the ride-on mower.

2011-12-12 02The Duke had managed to break a link in the steering when he last used it.  We have sloping land which is scattered with volcanic rocks (boulders, actually) which are mostly submerged and other obstacles such as large tree roots.  We need this mower as there is a lot of grass to keep mowed.  Here is part of the backyard.

2011-12-12 03I took Psycho Dog to the vet as I had found another 2 paralysis ticks on him this morning.  He had one a couple of months ago which made him quite sick but luckily this time he is not too bad.  It will still cost me quite a bit for the antidote.

I have bought a new tick collar (due for one) today, also.

My final purchase for the day will be online.  I am going to buy a set of dog clippers so that I can keep his coat really short as that is the only feasible way to be able to find the ticks. The cost of the set of clippers is less than one dose of tick antidote so a cost-effective purchase.  Previously, a friend would clip him about every 4-5 months but because of the extreme tick season this year he needs clipping about every 3 weeks.  She is no longer doing it so I have decided to do the clipping myself.  He is a border collie with a thick, double-coat which makes it almost impossible to locate the ticks.  We live in a tick-prone area but the ticks are particularly bad this year.  Perhaps it is because of the wet summer we had last year?

This is what Psycho Dog looks like when he is clipped.  I think he is quite handsome.

2011-12-12 04

Making Ends Meet


The Duke and I have begun planning and booking for an overseas trip in August 2014.  It has been a considered financial decision for which we have budgeted.  This is in addition to our day-to-day household budget, debt repayments (mortgage and personal loan) and savings (superannuation).

On the face of it, everything looks pretty rosy financially at the moment which is in stark contrast to some other stages of our lives.  But everything could change in a blink if one or both of us were to be made redundant from our jobs.  We do not really expect that to happen but nothing is 100% certain.  We just have to make the best of what we have at the moment.

making ends meet

As I mentioned earlier, there have been times when making ends meet has seemed almost impossible.  Unfortunately, there are many people in this situation.  I read their stories every day in newspapers, online and in magazines. I see it being played out in cities and small communities all over the world.  Sometimes it can be a problem of long-standing (spanning generations) or may be a small blip on the radar due to a temporary change in circumstance.

Whatever the reason, there is a problem when expenses exceed income.

I deliberately left that line by itself because that is the crux of the matter.  Read it again.  When expenses exceed income.  It does not matter what way you dress it up, if you spend more than you earn you will have a problem.  One day the credit card  will reach its limit, you will not be able to get more credit and the house of cards will come tumbling down.

Enough of  the problem.  We are looking for solutions.  There is no magic bullet and this is going to be hard work.  I plan to write a series of posts over the coming days to focus on each of the following points in more detail.  If you have personal experience, suggestions or comments please leave them here or you can email me directly at the email address in the ‘About Me’ tab at the top of the page.

1  Be honest

2  Create a list of expenses

3  Sort essentials from non-essentials

4  Make a plan

5  Accommodation

6  Food

7  Utilities

There will be other topics and the structure may change as the comments unfold.  However, the purpose of this will remain.  It is designed to share collective wisdom from all sources in order to help and support each other.

I look forward to hearing your stories and tips, no matter how small or insignificant they may seem.  What are the little things you do every day that save you money?  Remember, this may make the difference to someone else’s  life.

Until tomorrow.