Cutting back

My heart has been sick within me lately.  We have lived in Australia for nearly 4 years, and I have only been back to the States one time since then.  Now that Cody is here, visiting family is a major priority.  The problem is, traveling back is incredibly expensive.  Between plane tickets, hotels, food, and rental cars, we are looking at upwards of $10,000 per trip.  Sheesh.  And so, my heart has been sick within me…

Thank God I have the understanding husband I do.  Together we have come up with a plan to cut back on a few things and slowly save so that we can go back every two years.  This will mean less luxury from day to day so that our trips back will be possible and a bit more enjoyable.  Here’s our plan:

  • Downsize.  Sell furniture and miscellaneous things we can live with out and move into a smaller (i.e. cheaper) place.
  • Sell the piano and get a nice weighted keyboard.  This will cut down on tuning expenses ($150 per tune) and moving expenses ($300-$500 just across town and more depending on the number of steps you have).
  • Shop for groceries online.  iherb.com and groceryrun.com.au have some great deals.  Coupons are not yet a thing in Australia (although I have hope that they will be one day), so I have to cut corners in smaller ways.
  • Tithe.  Believe it or not, I believe tithing will set our priorities straight and that God will bless our efforts through it.
  • Eat out less.  Eating out in Australia costs around $20 per person no matter where you go (even Mcdonalds).  We probably eat out once a week, sometimes more.  We’re going to try to cut back on this quite a bit.  This will take a bit more preparation on my part (which will be good for me), because often our eat out nights are when I remembered we had to eat dinner last minute only to realise we had nothing in the house to prepare.
  • Cut back on frivolous spending.

There are still many obstacles standing in our way for a trip this year, but I am still praying that God will work these out and make this trip possible.  

Do you have any tips on how to cut back or live frugally?  I would love to hear them!  Leave a comment below.  🙂

 

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11 thoughts on “Cutting back

  1. Tithing is a great suggestion. It is so hard to write that check sometimes, but I do believe God honors His promises to provide if we are faithful. My in-laws have an amazing testimony about tithing and I keep hoping we will too someday.

  2. Completely empathize with you… Being far away from family is hard! I can’t believe how expensive is to travel from Australia. Your plan sounds great! I hope that it works so you can visit your family more often, once in the past four years is not enough, how did you manage?

    • I hope it works, too! I have managed only because my mom has visited twice and my older brother once, so I have had small pockets of time with family. Also, my husband’s family lives nearby and are my “home away from home.” It’s still not the same, though, especially on my birthday or Christmas. Hopefully this will be just what we need to get there.

  3. Those sound like good ideas to me! We started doing a cash envelope budget system and that has helped a lot 🙂 Budgeting is tough at first but so freeing in the end!

  4. Hi, how about cutting your landline phone at home and rely on mobiles, Skype etc.
    Sell stuff on gumtree.com.au, it’s so easy and it’s free. Eat more vegetarian meals using legumes, it’s cheaper than meat. If I need something I will always check my local Op shops first. I also agree with tithing….
    Row

  5. Pingback: Security | laughingpromises

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