Wednesday, 11 May 2016

5 Tips To Help You Save For That Family Holiday

Last year our finances we really a mess so I started to blog about things like BudgetingSystems to help manage your money, even Ways to deal with financial stresses.

By focusing on our financial situation and by writing about it and reaching out to others I was able to make the decision to do things to gain control of our finances and this then led to me being able to save enough money to take my family on a one week holiday for hubby's 50th birthday this can read about part 1 of that trip here and part 2 here.

So today I am going to share with you 5 tips to help you save for a great family holiday!

1.  Reduce Weekly Spending

Sometimes this is easier said than done but if you really commit to it you will find some areas where you can reduce spending.
For me I focused on cutting back some grocery expenditure, planning meals in advance to avoid overspending at the supermarket and to avoid last minute takeaway.
Think about what you are buying.  I would buy some things out of habit, for example a bottle of coke, but I didn't NEED it, it was just habit.  Try to break some of these habits.

2.  Review Your Other Expenses

By this I mean review things such as health insurance, vehicle insurance, electricity providers etc..  There may be savings to be had by changing to another company where you can still get the same or very similar policies.

3. Start Saving

Okay so you've reduced spending but now we need to make sure that you are saving that extra money!
My recommendation is to put that money somewhere where you can't touch it easily, such as a bank account with no cards attached etc..
That way you won't be tempted to just take out $20 for this or $50 for that.
Don't forget that small change can add up too so keep a jar handy for all of your coins

4.  Set Yourself a Goal

I find it more motivating to keep saving if there is a goal to work towards.  Our family holiday was my goal and it kept me going.
Sometimes when you want to buy something you will need to weigh up whether or not your money would be better off put into your savings account and towards your goal.

5. Shop Around For Holiday Deals

This is really important.
Shop around for the best airfares, check that you are not flying in a peak time if possible.
Some accommodation places will offer stay 2 nights get the 3rd for free, use this to your advantage!
Vehicle hire is sometimes cheaper early in the week so check and see and if so then factor that in as well.

There are many online websites, blogs and resources to help you with your savings journey. One such resource is Credit Card Insider which is very useful if you have a credit card. This site tells you all about how paying a credit card works, debit cards vs credit cards etc...
So there you have five tips to help you get on track to save for a family holiday too!

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

10 on 10 Photography Circle - May

For this months 10 on 10 photography circle project I am posting a few quick snaps from Mother's Day!

So Mother's Day didn't start with a sleep in or breakfast in bed....oh no it started with a 9am soccer game instead which meant grabbing breakfast on the run....

That 9am soccer game was followed by a 10.40am soccer game so lunch was grabbed from the canteen....

It's sounding pretty special so far right!!

We rushed home from soccer, the girls had quick showers and we set off to see Miss 16's drawings that were on display at the Art Exhibition in Camden....

Miss 16 was commended for this piece of artwork which was a great achievement....

After the art exhibition the troops were getting hungry so we went for a walk down the main street and came across this fantastic cafe called Split Diner.  I am a huge lover of all things 50's and 60's so it was the perfect stop for Mother's Day.....

And the food was amazing....

Camden has some quite amazing buildings and some lovely scenery, especially in autumn.

Then it was home for pressies....and the usual Sunday night prep for the week ahead.
Hubby is working away this week so this is the survival hamper that he and the girls put together for me.....haha he knows me well...copious amounts of chocolate and snacks with a can or two of coke thrown in!

I know I have a bit of a random number of photos there...but hey!!

I hope you all had a special Mother's Day too!

Please check out the other blogs in this photography circle....there's a lot to love in our 
wonderful group....  
I am linking to Jen over at  Pierced Wonderings   
Be sure to check out her great photos for this month
by clicking here .  Jen always..ALWAYS...takes amazing photos!!

Linking up with Essentially Jess for #IBOT

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Family Holiday Part 2 - Mornington Peninsula

Last week you read about Part 1 of our family holiday here.....3 nights in Melbourne seeing the sights and shopping up a storm!

Then we packed up and moved on to Part 2 of our family holiday...

The plans for Part 2 were started the day that I read a blog post by Fleur from Our Urban Box titled 4 Family Weekend Away Ideas..... pop over to Our Urban Box and read it for'll be glad you did.

I fell head over heels in love with Happy Glamper, their bell tents and that airstream...oooh the airstream!!

Many hours were spent drooling over the Happy Glamper website and Instagram account. And then I discovered that the airstream, known as Peggy Sue, was a 1966 Airstream TradeWind....1966....she was turning 50 and so was was meant to be!

Emails were exchanged and tentative plans were made.

Happy Glamper is located on the Mornington Peninsula and it soon became apparent that a vehicle would be very useful to get us and our luggage from Melbourne to the camping site chosen which was Point Leo Foreshore.

Hours of internet trawling led me to Hire A Kombi and again it was love at first sight.

Again emails were exchanged and tentative plans were made.

Months passed and keeping this trip a secret was almost killing me...but it was so worth it in the end!!
The day came to start the Part 2 adventure so we headed off laden with extra luggage from all that shopping!!

We caught a train to Geelong...I'm pretty sure by now everyone was getting a bit worried about our new destination!

At the train station we were picked up by Alyce from Hire A Kombi in Harriett...everyone's faces...OMG they were excited!!  Within about 6 seconds Harriett was probably featuring on at least 5 instagram accounts lol !!  

Then it was off to get the ferry across to the Mornington Peninsula.  We were even welcomed to the peninsula by dolphins....yes seriously dolphins!!

We drove and drove and eventually reached our destination...pretty sure Siri took us the long way coz on the way back at the end of the holiday is was much quicker!!  But with the amazing views of the peninsula we loved every minute.

When Siri announced that we had a camping ground....there may have been a few concerned faces.

But then we drove up to this....

And WOW!! This was the moment that I had been waiting for since I first started planning this trip.

Sadly for the girls though Peggy Sue could only sleep a maximum of 4 so I had arranged alternate accommodation for them....and this may well have been part of the reason that I kept the details of this holiday a secret!

Arriving to all of this set up for you in a perfect location was just amazing!  

I think they were happy with their accommodation when they first laid eyes on it....wouldn't you agree...

Four nights definitely was not long enough at Point Leo Foreshore and we were already making plans to go back before our time was up....well hubby and I were, the girls hmmm maybe.

Sadly our family holiday for hubby's 50th came to an end and hubby bid farewell to Peggy Sue...until next time!  And the girls bid farewell to the tent that they had now come to love!

Hubby and Peggy Sue both turn 50 this who do you think did it better??

The holiday fund jar has been reinstated and we are starting to save for hopefully another trip to the Mornington Peninsula....fingers crossed.  But for now it is back to work!!

Have you ever been to the Mornington Peninsula?  I'd love to hear about it if you have!

Linking up with Essentially Jess for #IBOT