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Pits and Peaks This Week

Another week of Pits and Peaks! This week was a bit of a doozy, my friends.

Not only did we have friends in town visiting over the weekend (meals in restaurants! oh my!) but we also planned and purchased plane tickets and accommodation for our annual vacation. Eek! So without further ado:

Pits

We went out to eat not once, not twice, but several times this weekend. I know, I know. Cardinal sin. The first time, it was the birthday party of a friend. She chose the restaurant and invited a group of people, so there wasn’t much getting out of that one. Plus, it was a restaurant that both Anna and I enjoy, pricey though it may be. Birthday dinner set us back a whopping $100, though. Rough, but the birthday girl was happy and that’s what counts 😉

With friends at the local coffee shop.

Throw us right in the sin bin, because we also went out to eat a couple of times with our friends who came to visit. It was raining and our plan to take them for a hike was foiled. It’s tough to avoid going out when you have friends visiting from other cities who want to play tourist in your city.

In hindsight, if we had been more prepared I think we could have cooked something up at least the first night they were here. But, since I had been so so sick at the end of last week, our kitchen was all but empty and we were ill-prepared.

Finally, we committed another frugal living atrocity which was purchasing a vacation. Don’t worry, though, folks. We did our research and found great deals. We are debt free, have a healthy savings stash, and I feel like a little vacation once a year never hurt anyone’s savings rate that much.

So, we are going to Mexico in April and the entire trip set us back about $1500, including airfare and our place to stay. Not bad, I’d say. But, still, an extravagance.

Peaks

On the flip side, hey, we were able to book a whole vacation for only $1500! I’m especially proud of the airfare deal I found. Since we are flying out on a Tuesday and back on a Monday, we were able to get tickets roughly $300 cheaper than if we had flown on a Friday or on the weekend.

Anna scoping out super luxurious dream properties we could never afford.

Another peak was having our guests stay in our extra bedroom! This isn’t financial per se, but the reason we are able to have an extra bedroom in the first place is because of all the hard work we put into this place. This weekend was the first time we were able to have people stay. It was so nice to wake up in the morning and not have to worry about waking up a guest on the couch!

Another small victory of the week was that despite my sickness, we got out on Monday night and, in a half-sick daze, grabbed all the groceries we would need for the week. We’ve been able to avoid any lunches or dinners out this week, saving us some $$$.

Finally, I got my younger sister into Mr. Money Mustache! I consider this a huge win. She was asking me about how she should start saving (she was offered a new job – yay!) and if she should get a car, etc. I pointed her in the direction of his blog, and now two days later she is an absolute convert! It’s great to see her so stoked about saving her money and living well, especially since she is so young.

So, that was our week – more money spent than average, that’s for sure. I’m not terribly worried about the vacation, but I’d really like to find more ways to cut back on restaurant spending, since that is our #1 weakness. Do you have any tips for how to stay away from restaurants when friends’ birthdays and out of town visitors roll around?

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2 Comments

  1. That sounds like a whole bunch of peaks to me 🙂

    My parents usually want to eat out when they visit, but they insist on paying, so it’s my stomach that protests rather than my wallet.

    I’ve had varying success myself with eating prior to going out to eat…. then ordering just an appetizer or just a drink depending on the group focus. It did help to frame it for myself as “Oh I’m leaving from work and will be too hungry so I’d better eat now just in case”or similar – because often I *would* be super hungry and would order more than I should anyway, regardless of my spending.

    There were a couple of times I used that within the group, too, to answer why I wasn’t ordering more “Oh I was running a few errands and got hungry so ate a bit before I arrived.”

    It’s so much easier in the summer when picnics and outings are the norm, because nobody wants to miss a day outside in the three months of Not Winter 🙂

    • Flo Flo

      Eating out with the parents is always a win! Also, pre-eating is a great strategy, I need to remember to do that more. Not only will it hopefully convince me I won’t die if I just eat an appetizer, but also as you mentioned it provides a legit explanation in case anyone asks.

      Luckily here in SoCal, it’s picnic weather *nearly* all year round! We’ve had a lot of rain lately, but in general it’s not hard to convince friends that an outdoor excursion is the way to go 🙂

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