A beautiful start to our last morning at Cabri Regional Park, Saskatchewan, Canada! Photo taken today.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Cabri Regional Park, Saskatchewan, Canada.

Where are they going next? Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan on September 25th. Ottawa, Ontario on September 27th. Barbados on October 25th!

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year! And, expense report...

A new year is like a blank book, and the pen is in your hands. It is your chance to write a beautiful story for yourself. 

Happy New Year to all of our readers! We certainly plan on writing a beautiful story for ourselves this year, and it starts today, because we get on a plane to Barcelona, Spain this evening! What a great way to start the new year!

We hope you follow along with us every day. It's going to be exciting as we start our two month European motorhome adventure on January 6th!

Christmas in Ottawa was just okay. On the one hand, we really enjoyed spending the time with family and friends, and of course that's the reason we came here. But on the other hand, two weeks of cold and snow was about 10 days too many! Also, we have once again proven that we spend more money staying in one spot in Canada than we do when we're traveling to somewhere warm.

So it's not likely to happen again for a long time, if ever. Seems much more logical for everyone involved to come visit us for Christmas where ever we happen to be!

Happy New Year!

The photo above was taken two nights ago at the pub where our daughter works. Last night, we were asleep by 10:00pm!

Here's our expense report for December 2016. Keep in mind that we spent the first two weeks in Moldova, and that it includes our airfare back to Canada.

In total, we spent $2,773 in the month of December. (Note: these are Canadian dollars. For U.S. dollar equivalent, you can subtract about 25%). Here's how it all broke down...

Gasoline: Higher than expected, at $234. We spent $94 on our car rental in Moldova, and another $140 in various borrowed vehicles during our time here in Ottawa.

Grocery: We were doing fine for the first half of the month. We spent $321 in total...$91 for the first two weeks in Moldova, and $230 for the next two weeks in Ottawa. Welcome back to Canada!

Alcohol: A total of only $113...lower than normal, but only because our October booze was higher than normal. We had bought a couple of boxes of "brew it yourself" wine and we had enough left over for our time in Ottawa.

Miscellaneous: Not bad, at $218. Most of it was because of Christmas presents.

Entertainment: Far higher than normal, at $493. We spent $221 while in Moldova, and another $272 here in Ottawa.

Overnight: $320. All of it during the first two weeks while in Moldova and Transnistria. Approximately $23 a night, so we're happy with that. Thanks to Ruth's dad, daughter Lindsey and husband Justin, and our son Alex for supplying our accommodation while in Ottawa!

Travel: $1,074 in total. This includes a minibus from Romania to Moldova, our car rental in Moldova, and a train ride from Chisinau to Bucharest...and then our flight back to Canada for $337 each.

So, a bit of a pricey month again...but we're going to put the brakes on a bit for the next two months. It will be interesting to see how things work out living in a European motorhome exploring Spain and Portugal for the next two months.

Looking back on the year 2016, we spent a total of $22,000 living. Our most expensive year since we started out on this alternative lifestyle ten years ago this coming October.

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New Year's resolution? Amazon has a fantastic price on their deal of the day today...

Schwinn 430 Elliptical Machine





25 comments:

  1. It may have been too long a stay, but think of all the memories you made.
    Happy New Year. Safe travels.

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    1. It was only the weather that made the stay seem too long, every other bit of the time was wonderful. Really enjoyed spending Christmas with our families, especially the grandchildren. :-)

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  2. You are inspiring me to do more traveling. Guess it doesn't have to be as expensive as I imagined. I do see though that it takes a lot of work to have a good plan for keeping costs low and a lot or research involved.
    I am looking for to your adventures in Spain

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    Replies
    1. Glad that we are inspiring you! Most people tend to think travel is expensive and that is why we are trying to show people that it doesn't have to be but you also have to be adaptable and not want 4 or 5 star accommodation along with meals out all the time. Yes, it does take lots of good planning and we are lucky that Kevin is very good at that. He definitely does his research. :-)

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  3. Beach and I wish you two a happy and healthy 2017 New Year. We are leaving for balmy weather in the Caribbean in two weeks, even though we feel like pansies compared to what you and your families are going through with all the snow and ice during the holidays. However, as Tioga George says, we are looking for t-shirts and shorts weather (at least for three weeks) before coming back and getting ready for the camping season. We will continue to follow your adventures in Europe while in the islands.

    Dee
    Summerville, SC



    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Dee and we wish you and Beach a very Happy New Year as well.

      Nice to see that you will be enjoying some nice Caribbean weather for the few weeks, nothing beat getting away from cold and the snow. Have fun!

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  4. I look forward to traveling along with you. We will be spending our winter in Maui.

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    1. Dewit, you lucky dog! How many flying hours do you have to travel? In our younger days, we would fly through Atlanta, LA, and into Honolulu, then the next morning fly into Lahaina, Maui. Our first flight there was in 1988 when a small plane had to land on an old World War II landing strip. Maui has certainly changed a lot since then, but I still love the place; just don't love the long flying hours much anymore. Hope you get to drive up to the dormant volcano, Haleakala, but dress warm.

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    2. Hawaii is definitely on our list of places to visit and one day we will make it there. Enjoy you winter there.

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  5. Happy New Year.
    Your expenses for lat month are about our average year round, well within our budget.
    Safe travels,

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    1. Thanks George and we wish you and Suzie a Happy New Year as well.

      We feel pretty good about our expenses for the year. We have definitely had a few higher months but overall it has evened out nicely and we are proud to say we did a lot on that small amount of money over the full year.

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  6. Great meeting you both! All the best in 2017!!!

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    Replies
    1. It was wonderful meeting both you and Paula. Can't wait to see how your plans have progressed when we get back there in April.

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  7. Looking forward to your new Motorhome travels in Europe! We may take some tips from you should we like to do this some day soon! Travel safe and enjoy! Happy 2017!

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    1. We are really looking forward to those new adventures too Brigette. It will definitely be different for us.

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  8. Happy new year from cold and snowy Vancouver. Safe travels and we will enjoy reading about your next adventure.

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    1. Happy New Year to both you and to Shelagh! Stay warm. ;-)

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  9. Happy New Year, Kevin & Ruth! I'm definitely looking forward to following along with your travels in 2017 as well as doing our own travels, once we finish enjoying our winter in Florida. I'm with you on the cold weather!

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    1. And Happy New Year to you too, Emily! Looking forward to seeing where you travel to this year as well.

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  10. Look forward to reading your MH trip. We are from Edmonton and bought a MH in Amsterdam in Sept. Travelled all the western countries for 3 months and have just finished our first month in Morocco. We have another 60 days to spend here before we are allowed back into Europe to travel another 3 months to see the eastern countries of the EU. Will be interesting to see how you'll like Spain and Portugal. We loved both of course but the weather was very rainy. We travelled mostly the coastlines of both countries. Our biggest problem was refilling our propane tank �� since we didnt have exchangeable tanks. And every country has a different filling nozzel! Enjoy and Happy New Year

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    Replies
    1. Wow, sounds like you are having a great adventure! Do you have a blog? We would love to read it if you do so that we can get some insight into the travels that you have done so far, especially in Morocco.

      We have been to the Algarve in Portugal before but it was back in 2007 and it wasn't in a motorhome but we loved our 2 weeks there.

      We won't have any problem with our propane because we do have exchangeable tanks with this motorhome so that will make things a little easier.

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    2. Hi this is Lyd (I couldnt post a reply with my google info so used Dwayne's :). Anyways I keep a blog at travelpod.com/members/lydanddwayne. We also FT in Canada in our 5th wheel. Having a great adventure. Oh and dont forget to buy rubber gloves for dumping the "cassette" :). Very different in Europe! No full hooks here :)

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    3. Thank you for getting back to us with your blog address. Once I have a new charging cord for my computer, I will take some time to look at it. It would be nice if we could get a chance to get together this winter but it sounds like we may miss each other with our timing.

      We are quite aware that Europe does not have very many full hook up sites and we have no problem with that because we rarely use full hookups back home. We have already been given instructions and a video demonstration on how the cassette works and I think we will be just fine with it. Thanks for the warning. :-)

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