Do I have a life outside blogging?

Blog Or DieYes, but I’m starting to question myself. I wake up – think about blogging. During work – I think about blogging I blog. When I get home, I tweet/email/do blog stuff. For someone who naturally doesn’t like to write, it’s all very strange to me. (although my wife would say this is more like “talking” and networking than “writing,” and I think it’s true.)

I liken it to my early years when all I thought about was women ;) But now that I’m married, it’s more like having a mistress instead – a mistress that goes by the name of Budgets Are Sexy! Ow ow! At first I thought it was just a phase, but here we are 2 years later and my passion is only growing for her. It’s just so damn exciting! The question though, is whether I’m addicted. And I just may be.

Which brings me to my point today – I think I need a vacation. More specifically, I think I need to join all our friends on a 10-day Eurotrip this Spring! (didn’t see that one coming, huh?). The more I learn about money, the more I realize the importance of spending it on things you truly value – and not to hoard it. I always TRY to keep this in mind, but the reality is I don’t. I save and save and save, and then I get addicted and never want to spend any of it! Haha…I’m not saying it’s totally bad, but it’s def. not the most healthy.

If there’s one thing I have never regretted in life it’s traveling. And even more so with my crazy friends and all their crazy significant others. It may slow down my millionaire plan for a bit, but traveling always repays you back in “life experiences.” And in all honesty that’s a lot more important to me than more money in the bank.

So instead of making up excuses and worrying about missing all my money AND my blog stuff, I’m gonna say F it and just do it! Yes, I WILL go on that trip with all you, friends :) This blog will be fine without me for a little while, right? And doesn’t the iPhone work in Europe anyways? haha… it will surely be expensive, and you know I’ll blog about it later, but I think it would be stupid of me to pass on such a once-in-a-lifetime adventure like this. As the saying goes, you can always find ways to get more money, but you can never get your youth back!

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  1. Anonymous February 7, 2010 at 7:37 AM

    I thought it was funny that people are telling you to travel because the experience is worth more than money. I think many people use that as an excuse to live beyond their means, like they are entitled. I feel traveling is only worth it if you have a substantial emergency fund and enough to be able to pay for it without financing. Anyhow, I know you can afford it so have a blast :)

    -StackingCash (When I travel I make sure I have a 10k budget above the cost of airfare and hotel room. Even if I don't use it all, it makes for a GREAT experience)

  2. FinEngr February 7, 2010 at 6:11 PM

    J. Money:

    Having the same problems and I just started! I'm only engaged and already am catching heat for my "other lover". Like the "think about blogging" strike through, that gave me a laugh.

    Let me suggest an incredible deal site:

    Let me also suggest going beyond the std. "Euro-trip".

    I'd recommend Istanbul. After I went there, I've had 3 other friends go. Everyone had an amazing time. Benefits: you're not on the euro – still exchange bonus.

  3. sahmcfo February 7, 2010 at 9:27 PM

    Much of our previous debt came from traveling and we are paying for it now. One of the main reasons I've committed to get out of this financial see-saw is so we can "get back out there". We are going to do it right this time and travel only when it's fully paid for. It's the motivation I need to really stick to the budget. I'm so jealous of you!

  4. Mrs. Micah February 8, 2010 at 3:37 AM

    Do it!! When I was 15 I spent 3 weeks in Europe with my family. When I was 17, I went for a summer with my aunt & uncle who lived in Denmark at the time and we traveled all over. Glorious. Unplug. Don't visit internet cafes more than once or twice a week.

    Blogging is an engrossing mistress and sometimes a harsh one (maybe she could put out more often–just sayin'). While "balance" may be overrated, sanity isn't, nor is getting out and doing stuff. I will want to see pictures. :)

  5. Finance February 8, 2010 at 8:12 AM

    Yes, I agree with everybody: Do it! Blogging and the Internet makes us all a slave to what we call "Laziness". Turn off that button and go enjoy life! :-)

  6. youngandthrifty February 9, 2010 at 2:50 AM

    Dude! That's only 10 days! that's nothing! =) I'm planning to do for 5 weeks!

    I completely understand what you mean by when you wake up you think about blogging. I think that's all I do now. I THINK in blog speak… (e.g. when I think of something, i think it might be a good post). I'm just a newbie, but have caught the blogging bug bad!

  7. J. Money February 9, 2010 at 6:15 PM

    haha, yeah i literally just "thought in blog speak" myself right now! it helps writing the ideas down before we lose them ;)

    i don't think i could go away for 5 weeks yet, but i support you all the way baby!

  8. J. Money February 9, 2010 at 6:23 PM

    @DD – Good idea! we're def. still planning on the baby making, but I can only imagine how harder it would be once they're out and alive ;)
    @donkee – thanks my friend :)
    @Ryan @ Planting Dollars – That was me the other night! I need to take your advice and just shut down the laptop every now and then…it'll drive you crazy.
    @StackingCash – You bring up a good point – I bet people DO use traveling as an excuse to spend money! Although at least it's better than brand new junk that they really don't need all that much.
    @FinEngr – hey thanks, i'll check 'em out! would love to go to Istanbul whether this trip, or the next.
    @sahmcfo – wonderful!!! keep up the motivation, it'll feel so much BETTER when you get onto that next trip :) and don't be jealous of me, i've been sitting tight for forever here! haha…
    @MrsMicah – I'm going to do my BEST to not visit internet cafes all the time, but i know i'll have to at least a few. it's easier for me to have a good time knowing i can "check in" and make sure nothing crazy is happening. and you better believe i'll have pictures!!! i'm gonna try and get into some trouble over there ;)

  9. conqueringpersonalfinance February 16, 2010 at 6:49 PM

    J. Money, have you thought about doing guest posts while you are away. I for one would like to guest post on your site. Maybe a post about the art of spending as a reward for winning financially. Let me know your thoughts.

  10. J. Money February 18, 2010 at 4:10 PM

    Oh yeah, you better believe I'll be popping in some guest posts for y'all to read ;) If you have a good one, email it over and I'll consider it thanks! j at budgetsaresexy dot com.

  11. JMK March 3, 2010 at 5:07 AM

    We're a few weeks away from having the last few miles we need for 4 free flights to Europe. Woo Hoo! When you can get there free it sure keeps the costs down.

    Last trip was August 2008 when we took the kids (14 & 7 then) for a month. Yes it was expensive – I figure nearly $13k for the 30 day trip for 4. Ouch, I know. It works out to just over $100/person/day, so maybe not all that bad for everything. It was only that high because we paid for 3 flights (hubby's work paid his as he had to work for 3 days in Munich which is what started the whole trip). This time the flights will be free so we should be well under $10k for a month. Last time we did 3 days in Rome, 12 day cruise (Pisa, Monte Carlo, Naples, Santorini, Ephysus, Mykonos, Athens, Olympia, Corfu, ending in Venice); 3 nights in Venice, train through the Alps to Munich for 5 nights; 6 days driving through southern and western Germany to Frankfurt for the flight home.

    Still trying to figure out the route for this summer's trip. Plan A is Spain and northern Italy (Barcelona, Milan, Florence, Lake Como area, Cinque Terre region). Plan B is Paris for a week,then a ~10 day Baltic cruise (Copenhagen, Oslo, St Petersburg, Amsterdam etc) followed by a week in London.

    Yes travelling like this now delays our early retirement my a few years, but it's a choice we're consciously making so that we can travel while our kids are still at home. We've cut our basic expenses down to 55% of our take home pay so that we can boost our retirement savings and make extra mortgage payments with the plan of retiring in our early/mid 50s. Yes we could retire a little earlier if we waited to travel in our retirement but we've decided having these memories with our kids it more important. My daughter still talks about the gondola ride in Venice and the donkey ride up the cliff on Santorini. My son went for a ride in a Ferrari around the streets that form the Formula 1 route in Monte Carlo. The picture of him grinning from the passenger seat still sits his night stand.

    The kids are reading travel books and I've asked them to pick three cities or sites they's like to see. In addition to contributing to planning this trip they are already thinking down the road and have suggested Australia, Africa and Peru for future trips. Getting them involved in the planning seems to make the connection for them when we choose not to spend on a giant TV, the latest gaming system, or go to restaurants for anything other than a very special occassion. They are very clear that the trips are instead of other things and are fine with it. Hopefully we're instilling in them that we can't do everything so we'll do the things that are most important to us, which isn't necessarily what their friend's families are doing.

  12. J. Money March 5, 2010 at 5:20 PM

    Woahhhhh you guys are such COOL parents!!! haha…Talk about "life experiences" – that is incredible :) Guess you can always earn money but you can't get back your time, eh? I'm sure you get $hit for spending so much on these vacations but I back you 100%. You are consciously making these decisions and broadening the minds of your children and family, that is wonderful. thanks so much for sharing! was fun to read this morning :)