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We have been sold a bill of goods. In order to be happy, we need to be rich. For the majority of us, that is not in the cards. There is hope, here are 10 ways to live rich and live happy without breaking the bank:
1 – Pick One Special Event Annually
As a parent, all of those events that come to town have such appeal. Then, you look at the price tag and you realize that this trip to your home town event center has the potential of draining your account in just a few hours.
Recently, our home town had the equivalent of Jurassic Park come alive. Tickets were $30 per child and $15 for parents. Then, you, of course, have concessions, souvenirs and some attractions were not included. I encouraged parents to drive by and see the dinosaurs before the event started. Yes, I know, kind of cheating, but if this is not the top on your list of must see’s then give yourself permission to cheat.
2 – Staycations Are Just As Fun As Vacations
Take time off from work, plan for a lot of home fun instead of a costly vacation.
Staycations can be a lot of different things. You can get creative and make it a theme staycation. Take a day trip to a surrounding community one day for a little variety. Go to the library and check out your favorite movies. Tent in your living room and pretend you are camping. If you have outdoor space and the weather is nice, take it outside. Visit your local museum, bowling alley or other recreational fun center near you.
It will save you money and the money you do spend goes back into your local economy. Truly a win win situation.
3 – Head To The Library
You are missing out on a lot if you do not have a family library card. Books, movies and even children’s programs. Sometimes, they even have things for the adults as well. Check it out, it is magical!
4 – Check Out Your Local Parks
We are fortunate as we have a variety of parks that include splash pads and nature walks. If you live in a big city and there are none in your neighborhood, do some researching and find one that you want to explore.
5 – Buy Some Items Second Hand
In the new world of internet, check your local pages for exchange groups. We even have a dollar auction that is full of wonderful items that you begin bidding at a $1. I have found some really great items for great prices on this site.
The key is to school your kids that they do not need to tell their friends that things are used. No one needs to know your secret. Thrift stores and yard sales are also good sources to find treasures.
6 – Make The Most Of The Deals
Check your local stores for advertised specials and combine with coupons. This is especially helpful in the area of food.
7 – Make Culinary Delights At Home Instead Of Eating Out
For special occasions, we have been purchasing nice cuts of steak at our local meat counter and then adding other things such as baked potatoes and our favorite vegetable. The meal costs at least 50% less than eating out and there are usually leftovers for the next day. The money saved can help in other areas of my basic needs budget.
8 – Visit Family And Friends
Not everything needs to be red carpet worthy. Do you have a sweet elderly family member who needs company? This fills time for them and the memories last a life time. It also reinforces the importance of family and friends with your children and will hopefully be passed on to the next generation.
9 – Instil The Value Of Taking Care Of Things
This encompasses a lot. Early training of picking up after themselves, of course within reason. Treating things in your home with care. I remember that we had friends when I was growing up and they always had new furniture because the boys were allowed to destroy the furniture. This is unacceptable. It is very simple to have house rules that include no jumping on furniture, no eating or drinking etc.
10 – Pay Yourself First
There will be a time that you want a fabulous vacation or something really nice for your home. The way to reach that goal is to plan and the way to plan is to save. Make a realistic goal of how much each time you are paid to set aside for savings and faithfully do it.
We have always had a few days away for a vacation. Sometimes, the destination is a few hours a way, other times, it has been a fabulous trip to California. We accomplished these goals by setting aside money each and every time we got paid.
While rich may refer to money it is also the way in which we live. The richness of one’s soul is perhaps more vital than how much money we have in the bank. As a family, get on the same page as to how you want your family to journey through life and make it happen!