- I'm currently recuperating from being sick. It wasn't as severe as the flu but I did feel pretty crappy for the past few days. I am sure I picked it up from the nieces we are taking care of. I love carrying around cute little toddlers. I forgot, however, that whenever I am in the same zip code as a toddler I get sick. Guess my immune system isn't up to par. A cheap, quick cure for this: lots of water/tea/soup, lots of vitamin C, and a bit of Thera Flu.
- Right this very minute I am watching the new show "Extreme Couponing" on TLC. I am super inspired by the people's stories (most note that they are debt free too!)--they are literally getting hundreds of dollars of food and toiletries for a few dollars...AMAZING! I use coupons occasionally but not like they do on this show. On the one hand, it does seem to take a lot of time and preparation to do what these extreme couponers do and since we are living so minimally, we don't have the need/storage space for all of the stuff that they can buy for literally pennies. On the other hand, if I can spend a few dollars and get lots and lots of stuff, maybe I should and just give it away to people who need it. Stay tuned for a post on couponing!
- I am using my free time to brush up on both my Japanese and Spanish language skills with my new books. I am also using a site called Quizlet to test myself on these languages for free (check this site out for all sorts of free study help with everything from languages and math to history and the MCAT/LSAT/GRE).
- We have been getting creative in the food department. The hubby and I do all of the cooking for everyone and while my SIL provides a lot of food (her hobby is shopping at Costco) we like to contribute as well. We have found a huge Asian grocery store where prices are pretty good. At most grocery stores I am absolutely stunned by how high prices have gone on many basic food items. So mainly our meals consist of soups, stews, casseroles, lots of stuff baked from scratch, and lots of ethnic meals (Mexican, Indian, Asian) which really helps to stretch our food dollars while at the same time adding lots of variety to our meals. Note: the SIL and her SO have repeatedly said they have never eaten so much at home and they have also repeatedly said they actually like eating at home now.
- A real time update....a guy on the Extreme Couponing show just bought $5743 worth of groceries and sundries for around $250 and an armload of coupons. Holy Cow! The good part is he is giving away most of the stuff he got to the food bank. Very cool! I predict that tomorrow the grocery stores will see a decided uptick in people using coupons!
- We may be starting a trend. The SIL and her SO (sister in law and her significant other) have asked us quite a few questions about how we got to the point we are at now (no home, no need to work, very few bills and expenses, and unlimited time to travel and do what we want to do). They would both like to retire soon but said that they need to bring in a minimum of $10,000 a month in retirement income in order to do so. I was flabbergasted. For most people, if your lifestyle is costing you $10,000 a month, you will NEVER be able to retire. So over many dinners we have discussed how we decided that freedom was much more important to us than material goods, how we paid off our debts, how we sold nearly everything we owned, and how we are experimenting with a mobile lifestyle, at least for the time being. We also told them that the two of us can easily live on $2000 per month (currently we are only spending about $1000 per month since we are getting free room and board). Hearing those numbers, they were flabbergasted! Now they are seriously talking about selling their huge house, talking about ways to decrease their debt, and they now think that retirement may actually be possible.
- It takes four adults to take care of two small children (and we are still tired at the end of the day!). How women in their 40s have babies is beyond me--the energy required to keep up with the (extremely energetic) kids we are taking care of now is beyond what I could ever do by myself. But it is fun, the kids are very nice and sweet, as well mannered as can be expected for a two and four year old, and we feel like we are positively impacting both the SIL (she has built in babysitters any time she needs them) and the kids (they get to have fun with their aunt and uncle plus we like to spoil them a bit).
I should get back to regular blogging soon, now that I am not coughing like a maniac. I will now go finish watching the couponing show!