Archives for posts with tag: planning

Guys. Ireland was amazing. Seriously, everyone is so nice, funny, and helpful, the scenery is breathtaking, and the food is to die for. What’s not to like? I experienced wonderful things every day while I was there so it was bittersweet to come home. I’m glad I did, though–it would be tough for anyone to live out of a suitcase for that long!

We drove all around the country (literally), starting and ending in Dublin. We went south the coast (beneath Cork), then to various points on the west coast, then up to Donegal, and we ended with a night in Derry/Londonderry (which was incredible; I highly recommend spending some time in that city) before driving back down to Dublin.

Rock of CashelRock of Cashel

I learned a lot about myself, like that I can drive on the wrong side of the road with almost no problems at all! It was very empowering since I was in charge of all of the driving :).

DingleThe adorable street we stayed on in Dingle

I went with my grandmother because she’s been to Ireland several times with my grandfather (who passed away in 2005) and his family is still there. We were able to meet with some on the east coast and some on the west coast! My grandfather’s father was one of 12, so there are plenty of cousins to meet.

Blarney CastleThe view from Blarney Castle

I also was able to come back to work with very little trouble. I can’t rave enough about preparing extensively before a vacation and making sure that everything is in order, especially if someone is covering for you. I made sure to get my coverage partners treats while I was away to show them how much I appreciate their work!

Peace BridgeThe Peace Bridge in Derry

Overall, I’m so happy I went and I can’t wait to get back. This trip gave me many ideas for future trips to Ireland!

How about you, readers; have you ever traveled to Ireland?

I know I’ve written about money several times before on this blog (see here, for example), but it is so important to have your money issues under control that I feel compelled to write more about it! I thought I’d give some examples of how I save money on a day to day basis, especially when it comes to doing things I enjoy or buying necessities (and not-so-necessities…).

  1. I love to read. I always have a book with me (and sometimes even my Kindle, too!) but they are expensive to buy. So, now, I almost never purchase hardcopies of books unless I absolutely loved the novel and cannot exist without it (which is rare). So, in my case, I use my library constantly. I’m lucky enough to work within walking distance to a gigantic library that has an excellent selection. Also, since inter-library loan became a thing, I never have to worry about my specific library not carrying a book I want. Sometimes the wait for a book can be long, but it is so worth it in the end to not shell out cash for books. I can check out some pretty great novels on my Kindle through my library as well!
  2. I hate shopping. Hate it. This goes for clothes as well as food–I hate having to battle my way through stores, trying things on (in the case of clothes), and figuring out which item to buy for my dinner this week (in the case of food). Whenever I can, I try to shop online for clothes, food, toiletries and other items. Usually, this means that I get discounts (especially on sites like Amazon) and I also get peace of mind :). For clothes, I’ve been shopping more recently at thrift shops (so amazing!). The clothes are beautiful and so very affordable–it’s a dream.
  3. Eat at home as much as possible. I can’t stress this one enough. I enjoy eating out very much, but now I save that for special occasions or a night out with friends. My waistline and my budget have thanked me profusely for this. I once heard someone say, “The quickest way to get rid of your money is to eat out.” Or something to that effect, but you get my drift.
  4. Put away whatever you can from each check and don’t even think about it again. I have a 401k through work but I also have a savings account of my own. Whenever I get paid, I pay my bills and set aside spending money for myself, then whatever I have left that I think I can spare I put into that account. Sometimes it’s $100, sometimes $20 (or even less…), but I do this for every single check and I can’t describe that feeling of security. It is so comforting to have an account set aside for emergencies, such as car repairs.

Okay, I’m done lecturing, I promise :). Honestly, though, I just want to share some friendly information about what I do to put a little money away each month.

What about you? What do you do to save each month?

saving

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