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Old 12-22-2012, 09:58 AM   #161
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That's a good suggestion.

I need to get her to go with me to Alaska first, and that leg could be a month or two. It could very well be that at the end of the trip, I have the wilderness out of my ears, and want to be back home too.

I know full-well that I am susceptible to fantasies that once realized may not be up to expectation. But when a guy's sitting at home and cannot travel because his wife has family obligation, he thinks the grass is greener "up north".
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:44 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by Mulligan View Post
I'm still waiting as our wealthier brethren are way too modest here to write about it.
Well, I won't do it, even though I don't consider myself/DW "wealthy", at all. I was zapped on another thread a few weeks ago, concerning the amout of money we spend on travel, and I don't need to go through that situation again.

If I tell the truth, I'm bragging according to some folks (even though that's not my intention, at all).

If I say I/DW are spending less, I'm lying.

So I just keep my mouth (e.g. fingers) "closed" and read (with interest) the posts of others...
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Old 12-22-2012, 11:17 AM   #163
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Originally Posted by rescueme View Post
Well, I won't do it, even though I don't consider myself/DW "wealthy", at all. I was zapped on another thread a few weeks ago, concerning the amout of money we spend on travel, and I don't need to go through that situation again.

If I tell the truth, I'm bragging according to some folks (even though that's not my intention, at all).

If I say I/DW are spending less, I'm lying.

So I just keep my mouth (e.g. fingers) "closed" and read (with interest) the posts of others...
I understand your feeling as none of us wants to be tagged as one of those rich bastards. It takes very little to make some other people envious.

You could just talk in percentage terms though that doesn't pack the punch of $$$$. Fictional example,
1) We spent 1% on travel this year. Last trip was to Tahiti.
2) We spent $60000 on travel this year. Last trip was to Tahiti.
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Old 12-22-2012, 11:51 AM   #164
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Originally Posted by rescueme
Well, I won't do it, even though I don't consider myself/DW "wealthy", at all. I was zapped on another thread a few weeks ago, concerning the amout of money we spend on travel, and I don't need to go through that situation again.

If I tell the truth, I'm bragging according to some folks (even though that's not my intention, at all).

If I say I/DW are spending less, I'm lying.

So I just keep my mouth (e.g. fingers) "closed" and read (with interest) the posts of others...
That's a shame because I like reading such posts and adventures about nice trips and such. This is an ER forum not ER Frugality only forum, though there certainly isn't anything wrong with frugality. Maybe sometimes amazement gets lost in translation when posted to be interpreted as jealous. If you got a good story, rescue, I will be glad to read it!
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Old 12-22-2012, 11:57 AM   #165
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Originally Posted by rescueme View Post
Well, I won't do it, even though I don't consider myself/DW "wealthy", at all. I was zapped on another thread a few weeks ago, concerning the amout of money we spend on travel, and I don't need to go through that situation again.

If I tell the truth, I'm bragging according to some folks (even though that's not my intention, at all).

If I say I/DW are spending less, I'm lying.

So I just keep my mouth (e.g. fingers) "closed" and read (with interest) the posts of others...
I didn't see that thread, but I'm sorry to hear it. I don't think any of us should have to justify how much or how little we spend. We may break down our expenses and explain them, but we should never have to defend the fact that we spend "a lot" or "not very much".
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Old 12-22-2012, 05:32 PM   #166
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I know most people say money doesn't buy happiness but I promise i'd be happier with more money.
I think all people can be happier with more money, if not for spending then for the pleasure of counting. Else, why do frugal billionaires like Buffett still work to get more?

For the average Joes like ourselves, there's plenty of worldly leisure to buy with additional money. However, any purchase can be made wisely or foolishly. Most of us with less than unlimited means must make compromise, or shop to get the most bang per buck. And one can get to the diminishing return point pretty fast.

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I don't think any of us should have to justify how much or how little we spend. We may break down our expenses and explain them, but we should never have to defend the fact that we spend "a lot" or "not very much".
Yes.

It's just that when people with more means than me tell how they spend their money, it's just not as interesting as the story from someone with the same means or less. It's so that I can easily duplicate their experience if it appears exciting.

Another important point is that people who travel on more limited means can have a much more interesting experience to tell. I have told how I like to read blogs of RV'ers, some of them do not have a lot of money. Yet, their travels are a lot more adventurous than that of someone who simply books a big balcony fancy suite on a cruise ship.

PS. I found the blog of an RV'er pair in their late 50s who shipped their RV to Europe (no, not the better known Milavsky couple). They appeared to be not that rich, as the husband had to go back to work after their trek. Then, shortly after he went back to work, they deleted their blog before I had a chance to read all of it. Theirs is among the intriguing stories that I like to read.
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Old 12-23-2012, 06:21 AM   #167
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The total spends for us (my wife and I plus 3 children) is about $105k.

The 2 biggest items are holidays (we took a total of 10 trips this year) and prepayment for a new car. These 2 items account for 30% of the total.
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Old 12-23-2012, 07:40 AM   #168
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I see the purpose of threads like this to educate all of us on a topic that we find endlessly interesting...how do others live, in comparison to me? Some people will always poke at others' lifestyles. I don't remember any really mean pokes at you, but I don't always get to read all of every thread. Also, criticism feels different when you're on the receiving end, instead of in the audience.

Envious people might say envious things, and whether in a real-life or Internet forum, all can see the envy for what it is. Many others say thoughtless things sometimes (guilty as charged, though not in your case since I didn't post ). Don't let any of it stop you from posting things that feel good to talk about, such as travel, etc. How is it unacceptable to talk about spending money on travel for fear of provoking envy, when some people post about their wonderful families, and for all they know, some forum members may be all alone in the world? The only risk-free alternative is to say nothing, and there goes the forum.

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Originally Posted by rescueme View Post
Well, I won't do it, even though I don't consider myself/DW "wealthy", at all. I was zapped on another thread a few weeks ago, concerning the amout of money we spend on travel, and I don't need to go through that situation again.

If I tell the truth, I'm bragging according to some folks (even though that's not my intention, at all).

If I say I/DW are spending less, I'm lying.

So I just keep my mouth (e.g. fingers) "closed" and read (with interest) the posts of others...
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Old 12-23-2012, 11:03 AM   #169
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I now see that my reply earlier could have been miscontrued, so let me do it again.

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Originally Posted by Major Tom View Post
I didn't see that thread, but I'm sorry to hear it. I don't think any of us should have to justify how much or how little we spend. We may break down our expenses and explain them, but we should never have to defend the fact that we spend "a lot" or "not very much".
+1

I am not sure what post was talked about, but IIRC, rescueme spent something like $30K/yr on travel. I do not think that is even at the opulent level, but simply reflects the desire of someone who likes to travel, period.

My sister and her husband have been spending a lot of money on travel recently, after her recovery from a mild cancer. I just drove them off to the airport, for them to catch a 2-week cruise.

Earlier this year, they took an Alaskan cruise, and also paid for their offsprings to accompany them. They have had 2 or 3 European trips this year, and also the same number of domestic trips. Would that not add up to $30K or more? We do not ask, but are glad that they are out enjoying themselves while they still can. I myself do not think I can travel that much, but hey, everybody is different. A few years earlier, we were the frequent travelers in the family, but now hold a distant 2nd place.
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:29 PM   #170
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About $65,000 for DH and I. Wish the nearly $12,000 we spent on health insurance coverage was for something fun like a European vacation. Even so, we consider ourselves fortunate to have retired early.

We expect this to drop to about $55,000 next year. We had a lot of expenses related to fixing up our old house for sale.

We live in a very high cost of living area (DC suburbs) but don't think we'd save a lot by moving. Our very modest home is paid for and the taxes and other expenses are not too bad.

Plus we like it here. Everyone we love and everything we love to do is close by.
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:45 PM   #171
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Y'all must not have enough friends, LOL--my "beer budget" also includes entertaining and going out with friends. And I also include in that guess the really fun stuff, like DH's 50th birthday party last weekend. We rented a place at the beach, cooked a bunch of oysters and barbecue, and inaugurated the shot-ski drinking device. A very memorable (for the ones who could remember) night! And well worth the expense in booze. Here's the birthday boy in his splendid gift shirt with his best buddies.
You know how to live Sarah Lots of friends, lots of pets, lots of joy in your life.
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:49 PM   #172
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They are my pride and joy - both of which were adopted this year. Common wisdom says that you shouldn't expect an older shy cat to get along with a kitten but after a few bathroom incidents on the sofa, my older cat has accepted the kitten and they get along just fine. In fact, I think that the outgoing little girl has helped the shy older lady come out of her shell.

I LOVE these 2 babies very much indeed!

Beautiful kitties! DH and I love hanging around the place with our cats too.

I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul. Jean Cocteau
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:59 PM   #173
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If I were not married, nor had the "stuff" that I had, I would take off in my little 25' motorhome and wander around the country. I'll bet I can live on a lot less than I spend now, and not unhappy about it at all. That is as long as I get Internet access every few days to see that my stash is still there. Heh heh heh...

For me, having money can be just as good as spending it. Some scroogy types here know what I am talking about. Heh heh heh... Wife will not understand it though.
Well, if you want to follow the lifestyle of Sr. Rico McPato in your RV, how are you going to fit that swimming pool full of gold coins in there? Sorry for the delay on posting the question but we have been snowed in and without power water and communications for a couple of days here at the SW Oregon branch of paradise.
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:15 PM   #174
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That would be a NICE problem to have. It's perhaps most easily solved by abandoning the small class C RV and reluctantly moving up to an opulent class A that I really do not care for.

Alas, at this point, my figurative little pile of gold coins weights less than the two deep cycle RV batteries in my RV. I still have a long long way to go to exceed the 2600-lb cargo carrying capacity of this puny RV. I remember that even my most optimistic FIRECalc 30-yr run still ends up far below that CC, at the current Au price.
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:51 PM   #175
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Out of curiosity, I looked up the densities of gold and lead. Turned out that gold is even denser than lead. So, I could get two dead lead-acid batteries, hollow them out and hide my gold in there, and still have room for growth. Heh heh heh...
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Old 12-24-2012, 05:20 PM   #176
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We spent $14,000 on health insurance alone. I don't even want to mention what I spent on golf and the airplane. But if I don't spend my money, someone else will eventually.
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Old 12-24-2012, 05:47 PM   #177
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We spent $14,000 on health insurance alone. I don't even want to mention what I spent on golf and the airplane. But if I don't spend my money, someone else will eventually.
Golf and airplane? Can't relate. $14,000 for health insurance? Can relate.

Those of you who have employer sponsored cheap health insurance for life sure have it made.
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Old 12-25-2012, 09:11 AM   #178
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In this, my second retirement year, we spent $43,827.99. $11,942.78 was medical expenses (without over-the-counter drugs), $4475.56 was house upkeep/repairs, and $3,682.30 was property tax and insurance (house, car, umbrella and earthquake). (Note these numbers are really 1 Jan 2012 through 21 Dec 2012.)
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Old 12-25-2012, 06:08 PM   #179
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All the posts are amazing to me because they remind me of days gone by when we had to budget every dollar in order to get through the year. I am so glad not to have to worry about that any more. On the other hand, I am ashamed to even think what we spend every year on junk. A while back my wife wanted to know what our income was per year and I didn't even know without sitting down with pen and paper. It came out to about $70K and we spend every bit of it. No mortgage. We are through saving money and just want to make sure our savings doesn't evaporate and that we have enough to get us to about 90 years of age. We have to get through the next 15 years without running out. By that time we probably won't even know what is going on so it won't make any difference.
We grade ourselves by how well we spend our money - not how little we spend. And I can honestly say, we do not spend our money on junk. I have absolutely no problem shelling out $$ for the good stuff when it's a priority to us and well within our means.
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Old 12-25-2012, 06:40 PM   #180
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We grade ourselves by how well we spend our money - not how little we spend. And I can honestly say, we do not spend our money on junk. I have absolutely no problem shelling out $$ for the good stuff when it's a priority to us and well within our means.
That is what we need on this forum, a valuation ratio. Perhaps it should be:
S/V = (spent dollars)/(good stuff spent dollars)

So an S/V = 1 is perfection in ER.
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