Thursday, September 25, 2014

We Choose Freedom

I've blogged about being debt free, how we travel, and Steve's nursing career in depth. 
I've shared most of our adventures from this past year, where we lived, what we ate,
what we traded our safe life for, and some of the things we chose to live without and how...
We don't own a house. We don't have 2 cars.
We don't have debt. We don't have much "stuff".
And most of the time we go without our many creature security for instance, lol
We choose to live like this...
And it's ok.
We're ok!
I'm ok!

We choose living over existing, We buy memories over material things.
We are not "celebrating" a special moment every day because every day is a celebration in itself.
We made these choices so we could live in freedom every single day.
We did not win the lottery and we are not blowing through our life's savings.
We are not on permanent vacation.
So then how do we reach a financial compromise when there are so many choices?
 We tackle this issue by making decisions together and agreeing on our budget.
That's it and when the monthly funds are gone... the activities are over.
Sometimes I do roll money over from a previous month and we decide together how to use it.
We then determine excursions that are worthy of our time and money.
Is this activity unique to the area? because if it isn't...
we are usually not interested in it.
Can we plan it into the work schedule?
Are there any discount coupons? lol
I love the way!
Often it seems that by our standards we are living like rock stars,
but I think we have just now joined mainstream society.
Through the years I was so conditioned to save and not spend. 
Now I have a spending budget... so weird, lol.
There have been many times that I cringed while releasing our cash just 
 to purchase gas, food, hotels, or tickets...and there were more times than I can count 
that I just said...
I'm not paying for that. 
We don't need that.
I'm not interested in doing that.
and more often than not...I really don't want to eat that, lol.
But on many occasions we did say yes!
We did step outside our comfort zone and 
experience some new things this year!
And guess what? 
We enjoyed it and it has lit a fire of adventure in us like we never imagined.
This year was so good for us and worth every penny we spent!
So here's the bottom line ...
I am still me!
 and I still use coupons, pack picnic lunches 
and go sightseeing on the free or reduced days...
And I'm good at it...
good at planning a tight low budget itinerary that packs a Big Bang!
Most of the excursions we have gone on have occurred during the week at a reduced rate.
Spencer is still in the 12 and under category and that helps some.
He still orders a child's plate sometimes and Steve and I still split a meal when we can.
We have enjoyed so many simple moments of just breathing it all in and saying,
Wow! We have arrived at "wherever we are..."
We are here! 
Let's just slow down and enjoy the moment...
Breathing in the air together...taking pictures...lots of pictures!
Just like we always did at the Houston zoo and museums when we picnicked with our kids.
Like we did at local parks with our babies.
Like we did at Disney World when we ate peanut butter sandwiches gazing at the castle.
Like we did when we went camping so many years ago with nothing.
Like when we had season passes at Astroworld and we left the park to eat our picnic at the car.
Like we did at the beach playing in the sand year after year...
So, our approach to sightseeing has not changed.
In fact this last year has confirmed everything I thought about travel.
Sure we have visited many bucket list worthy places...
 but this is not the time to make bad decisions by jeopardizing our funds 
and compromising everything we believe.
Now is the time to be clear minded and prepared so that we can continue our life of freedom.
It's the time to explore our determine when to save and splurge...
as we decide where we live and work and how we spend our days.
Trusting God's plan and purpose for our lives as this journey comes to an end 
and another begins in Texas.
That's freedom.

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