‘budget for everything’_ basing life on what you can afford – the new york times

In a recent article, “ Basing Life on What You Can Afford,” a dozen freelance writers from around the country gathered stories from people in their communities about the financial trade-offs they make nearly every day.

The article struck a chord with readers, who responded with the money trade-offs they make to afford the things they really want: a family vacation, a debt-free retirement, a trip to see polar bears.

Below is a selection of the comments received on the Facebook page of The New York Times. Best cocktails to order at a bar Combining Work and Travel Photo

From left: Gabriel Guzman, Kayla Guzman, Mark Mason and Fabian Guzman

I’ve been doing travel nursing for several months now and I finally have extra money to play with.


Best cocktails 2016 We don’t have very many possessions at this point since we move every couple of months. Best cocktails with vodka We are staying in a small one-bedroom apartment since it’s just my husband and 4-year-old.

We spend our extra money attacking our debt while also nurturing the hobbies that we finally have time for. Best cocktails san francisco For me that’s books, music, hiking and traveling. Best cocktails in las vegas Plus, my job is kind of like a working vacation sometimes! I don’t want to work just to survive. Best cocktails chicago That’s not life. Best cocktails Continue reading the main story

We will continue to live below our means when it comes to our “set costs” like housing and transportation. Easy cocktails for a crowd We don’t spend much on material goods. Easy cocktails with vodka Our disposable income will go toward enjoying life and doing what we love.

I drive an older car, have a roommate, rarely eat (or drink) out in order to save money to fund trips, buy hobby-related toys, and build a runway to allow pickiness in the future job market. Top cocktails with vodka I also prioritize living in a cool place with lots of hiking opportunities over income, relative to most people.

Also having a blast in grad school, when I (presumably) could be making more going into some more lucrative field. Best cocktails made with vodka Ditto for choosing majors in undergrad (though I’d have done that differently, in retrospect).

— Nikolai Gates Vetr, 24, Davis, Calif. Top cocktails for women Saving for a Mortgage-Free Retirement Photo

Buying our ranch-style house newly-built in an older, established neighborhood saved us a lot of money in the home-buying process. Good cocktails with vodka We don’t have the biggest house in the neighborhood, but it is comfortable, modern and adequate for our needs. Classic 101 radio The best thing we’ve done financially is refinance our mortgage few years ago.

We are not taking a big vacation for the next four years until our oldest child graduates from college debt-free thanks to a fully-funded scholarship for grad school and attending a service academy for her undergraduate degree. Classic 101 burgers & shakes Part-time work throughout the year allows us to increase our savings. Classic 101 burgers & shakes belmont ca These savings allow us to add additional money to our principal and pay our house off even quicker.

My husband and I are in our early 40s and our house will be paid off when we turn 50. Classic 101 burgers Saving money and trading off now so we can enjoy the value of not having to pay a mortgage is what I am most looking forward to.

My husband, daughter, two cats and I live in a travel trailer in a campground — $600/month covers rent, utilities, water, sewer, trash, and cable. Classic 101 burgers menu Plus there is a year-round pool and hot tub! While we work on downsizing more, our other possessions are stored.

My husband and I live in the Bay Area and just bought a condo. Best cocktails for a crowd That was a trade-off. Easy holiday cocktails for a crowd We wanted a single family home. Easy summer cocktails for a crowd We planned to have two kids, but with the cost of day care here at $1,800 to $2,000 a month for infant care we don’t plan on expanding our family for quite awhile.

Every time I spent hundreds of dollars on classroom supplies, that was money I could have put toward saving for my own family, which stings now that we’re ready to start one. Best cocktails in san francisco My husband, also a teacher, and I have actually talked at length about how to get by in our classrooms while refusing to spend any more of our own money on supplies. Simple cocktails with gin My classes have been pretty bare bones lately.

I’m a solo mom, so it’s just my income and no child support. Simple cocktails to make at home I meal-plan for the week, so I only buy what I need at the grocery store. Best summer cocktails for a crowd I cook 3-4 days out of the week, and then we do leftovers the other nights. Great cocktails with vodka My daughter packs all of her lunches on Sunday so that we don’t need school lunch. Classic 1920 cars I bring my drinks, breakfast bars and lunch to work.

We have no TV/internet because we are rarely home, and I like for us to be outdoors, or my daughter is constantly reading. Classic 1920s cocktails I skip a lot of invitations because it costs too much to go out to eat.

I do all of this because my daughter chose to swim competitively. Top 10 cocktails for women So, between paying for before/after school care and her swimming, there isn’t much left (after rent, utilities, etc.). Cheap cocktails for a crowd We do live in a nice house, and I love to provide that for her. Classic radio flyer wagon I’m very fortunate that I have family that will watch her for free and shuttle her from school to practice, as needed.

My daughter has been in love with polar bears her whole life, and she even collected donations in lieu of gifts one year for Polar Bears International. Classic radio fm I want to save money so she can see them in the wild before it’s too late.

— Katie Irvin, 41, Winston-Salem, N.C. Classic radio shows ‘I’m One of the Lucky Ones’ Photo

I’m retired and single, so I have to be careful with my money. Classic radio repair Instead of paying for cable TV, I watch DVDs from the library, stream stuff over the internet or read a book. Classic radio I make coffee at home instead of going to Starbucks, and I shop at the thrift store.

My car, bought in 2001, was paid for long ago, and I plan to keep driving it until it drops. Classic radio commercials I save enough each month to visit my granddaughter once in a while. Easy cocktails to make at home I have a pension, Social Security and retirement savings. Easy cocktails with malibu rum I also have health insurance through Medicare and my former employer. Classic bathroom I’m one of the lucky ones.

My trade-off is living abroad. Classic bathroom vanity I would be living paycheck to paycheck in the same position in the U.S. Classic bathroom tile I am able to save money, travel, and do so many things I enjoy because I work in Beijing.

— Kirsten Lindholm, 29, Beijing Continue reading the main story

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