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Over the last few years, Holly has really gotten into travel writing. Personally, I think it’s great! We love to travel, so it gives us an excuse to visit several places every year. It also helps to keep us from going back to the same places over and over again. I mean, it’s a really tough job, but somebody has to do it, right?!? *cue the violins*
You may have read her work either here or around the web at other travel sites, like Frugal Travel Guy or U.S. News & World Report Travel. Well, now that she has hit the big time, she receives the occasional invite to press tours at certain resorts and attractions. That’s great for her, but unfortunately spouses are rarely invited. So, while she is jetsetting around the world on solo holidays, I’m stuck tending to the homestead…alone.
Seriously, I’m totally travel deprived. I mean, it’s not like I just got back from Italy…or London…or Las Vegas…or Jamaica…or St. Maarten or anything. Sheesh, talk about getting the short end of the stick!
But alas, as the husband of a “D-List” internet celebrity, I’m forced to stand in the shadows and watch. Worse yet, I actually have to keep everything running smoothly back home! Of course, when you’re alone, it’s easy to take the easy route and blow the entire budget. But, I’m getting pretty good at preparing for her solo travels. Here are a few things I do before she leaves which make it easier for me to stick to the financial plan, therefore saving money.
Double Check the Budget
Now that Holly is traveling alone more, we need to be very careful with our budget back home. Even though these solo holidays are typically paid for, there are plenty of expenses that she can incur on the road…and expensive shortcuts I’m tempted to take at home. However, if we want to continue getting ahead, we’ve got to stick to our monthly plan even when she is gone. That’s why I always check in with the budget before she goes. I need to make sure I’m not missing anything. I don’t want any extra expenditures popping up that we haven’t planned for. I also check in with our expense tracking software to make sure I stay “on budget” all month long. Just because Mama is traveling solo doesn’t mean that I can let it all go at home!
Stock Up on Groceries
Holly would have you believe that I don’t have the first clue about cooking. I’ve pretty much got her fooled on that one. It isn’t that I don’t know how to cook. It’s that I don’t like it. Frankly, I’m not a very patient cook nor am I very creative. That makes it especially tempting to eat out the entire time she is gone. If there isn’t anything to eat in the house, it’s soooooo easy to take the easy route and head to Little Caesar’s. But, those extra expenses can add up quickly. That’s why I’ve learned that it’s important for me to stock up on groceries before she takes off. Since I’m already flying solo, I know I’m not going to want to take the kids to the store with me. But, if I have enough to eat stockpiled in the pantry, I can easily whip up some dinner without too much stress or busting the budget.
Make Sure the Bills are Paid
In addition to checking the budget, I always want to make sure that all of our bills are paid before she leaves. When you’re married, communicating about money is key. We don’t want to miss any payments or incur any late fees because we failed to communicate. So, before she takes off on her solo holidays, we always go over the bill situation to make sure everything has been covered.
Get Ahead on Work
If I know that Holly is going to be heading out of town, I always try to get a little bit ahead on my work before she goes. When one parent is gone, that means all the responsibility falls to the other parent. If you have kids, you know how much time and energy they can require. Don’t get me wrong, it is great to have a lot of alone time with the girls, but it can also be draining. So, if I can get ahead on my work, that’s just one less thing I have to worry about it while she is gone.
Holding Down the Fort
So, Holly is in Puerto Rico right now, and I am missing her a lot. But, if you’re reading this babe, everything is covered. I got this. Have a great time, and we can’t wait for you to get home!