Our Frugal Lifestyle

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Passionate about eco-frugality. I used to party hard, clubbing my way from pay-packet to pay-packet. Never getting ahead, just getting by. Then came our much wanted baby with no savings in the bank - only an old car. Changes were made to our lifestyle and we didn't turn back. In the past 6yrs we purchased a flat, found employment, lived below our means, built an emergency fund, purchased a reliable car and saw the financial benefits of our frugal lifestyle. Our only debt is our mortgage. Our aim is to manage our cash flow wisely, pay off our home quickly and eventually work for pleasure, not necessity. Join us on our journey, share insights, tips and tricks to help us and others to get ahead while having a good time.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

10 Days Off - Day 7 Thursday 28/4

The Rambling Expat had his Quality Day with Dolly. He spent the morning at her school and the afternoon at home doing arts and crafts leaving me free to do laundry, reading blogs and pottering about until mid afternoon. At which time we headed to her dance/singing class as we never get to see it now that it's during our work hours.

After watching her in dance/singing class and making sure she wants to keep at it, we went out to purchase her new dance uniform. The uniform has been a new compulsory addition this year - so there were not outgrown ones to purchase from older dance students. I hate buying new - it's not green or frugal enough for me. I had her in black leggings and a purple singlet for her first 3 weeks in the bigger girls class and now it was time to bite the bullet as she showed no signs of quitting, even though she was saddened by the girls whispering how small she is (she's the youngest in the class).

The uniform (top, leggings and headband) cost us a whopping $78.60. We hope it will fit her for the next 2 years as it's for 4 to 6 years old. I aim to care for the garments gently and not let her play in it at the playground. If I can keep it well looked after I might be able to sell it on, to recoup some of the money.
Dance Uniform.
Dolly's dance/singing classes cost $85 a term (that's $340 a year). She loves the classes so it's well spent money. However I'm looking into weekend group music classes for her too and that's another $108.90 a term (435.60 a year). Both classes combined is $775.60 per year. Ouch!

The 3 of us went out for Pizza for dinner. It was time we shouted ourselves something nice especially since we were having our mini holiday at home and not in Bali as originally wanted.

Are You or your children enrolled in extra activities? How do you manage the costs of classes and uniforms?


  1. Both boys play football they get a uniform and kit bag all I have to buy are the boots

  2. I can understand Dolly loving her dance class. I took dance lessons for 7 years as a child---gymnastics, ballet, and tap---and loved it!

    My son started guitar lessons in August, which is $60 a month for 10 months. We'll have a break for two months this summer, but I've got to remember to set the money aside anyway for when we've got to start paying again. I managed the costs this year by NOT taking some online classes I had been planning for myself. Also, we started him out with a cheapo guitar to make sure he liked it and would stick with it. He loves it so we are buying him a new guitar for his birthday next month.

    Kids activities are expensive, but it is worth it when they are really passionate about something!

  3. My daughter was enrolled in Ballet but was way too expensive with annual fees, weekly fees which you had to pay for even if you didnt go, uniform and stockings and ballet shoes! It ended up a lot although i did make the leotard and tutu! Still a very expensive activity!

  4. Sounds like football is the most frugal option - I don't think Dolly will agree thought :-)

  5. Classes are good for kids, money permitting of course. My daughter is a only child so for her she has not only been learning a new skill but it is also a lesson in social skills. I have always sent her to places where she does'nt know anyone. Sounds mean but she has never had any problem making new friends. Other children we know would only go if their 'friend' went with them, they stayed together and wouldnt soclaise with the other kids.

  6. My daughter does karate once a week at the local Boys club, which is a bit like a PCYC. I pay an annual fee of $20 and weekly $5. You don't pay if your not there and it doesn't go during school holiday. I can concur about the ballet classes, that was very exspensive and we had to buy all the uniform from the dance school!

  7. Hi Miss Piggy,
    I agree classes are good for kids. It gives Dolly an opportunity to see if she has a passion in something other than just public school offered classes. She's very social too, but hurts easily when other kids don't want her to join in if they are already buddied up.
    Hi Lisa,
    The Rambling Expat would like Dolly to do karate, as he believes it's a good self defence skill.

  8. My daughter started Karate last year and she really enjoys it. The instructor says she is a natural and he wants to enter her for tournaments when she is a bit older. It must be all the practice she does on my husband !

  9. My husband is a black belt so she gets a lot of practice inbetween classes!

    I think it is a fantastic skill for girls to have. The youngest in the class is about 4/5 I think and they all seem to have a lot of fun.


Thanks for commenting - I love getting feedback, sharing experiences and learning from you.