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The best secret ever that will help you leave your life

by Penina

I’m freezing

Winter weather, especially in Melbourne, is a test. Us mums have been battling the fierce winds of the school run with brellies, hats and puffer jackets on. I’ve been standing at the preppie line shivering with the rest of them. I’ve been giving my daughter extra hugs for warmth and popping my hand out of its pocket into a shivering goodbye semi-wave.
Female hands holding knitted winter mug close up. Woman hands in white and blue mittens holding a cozy knitted cup with hot cocoa, tea or coffee. Winter and Christmas time concept.
I do confess I’ve been using other mums as human windshields in the schoolyard. We chatter on about the price of heating and electricity (always too high), what’s for dinner (can’t be stuffed) and who’s doing what in the school performance (and where is it and when?). We’re chuffed any of us even made it to school in this arctic cold. Trees have actually fallen in the winds this year. Most days, I walk away from that scene feeling like my ears will snap off and craving coffee. Job done.
She did look so damn cute in that line, and I’m so glad I’ll at least remember it 🙂

Domestic not-bliss

Now I am a typical time-poor working mum. In my case, you can put that idea on steroids. I’m in the fourth year of a mammoth home renovation, which hubby and I are now calling ‘a development.’ This week is ‘bathroom and build three walls week.” In between I work on several businesses in the dust and grime that is my nearly done half house. I do it all while ‘on a budget’ scrimping and saving on just about everything along the way.
The school pick-ups, drop-offs, family admin, groceries, laundry, kids parties and the ‘all-fathom-of-things’ fill the peripheral of my day and weekends. After I’ve cooked dinner, washed the children and dishes, done reading, debriefed with my hubby and crammed in some more work, only then do I crawl into bed (most mornings around 1am) in a heavy mummy heap.
Here’s my silver lining:
I sleep like a polar bear.
Source: 1000funnypictures.com

My little post drop-off detour

During a Melbourne winter, I occasionally get out of my environment (sanity does prevail sometimes) and find myself a super warm hole to soak in. This is usually the spa pool at my local recreation centre, which costs me little for the luxury I’m about to explain ($7 to be exact).
I broke out of my comfort zone this morning (the car I live in with the kids) – and detoured to my local recreation centre for some well-earned mummy time after the weekend.
This is not actually me – but the happiness in her face does describe the joy I felt on my little ‘detour from life.’ Oh and I was a whole lot colder than this woman…

jill111 / Pixabay

This is a luxury – trust me, which I never do – and I’ll probably pay more than $7 for for it shortly in lost business time.
Care factor: zero. I needed a break.

What happened to me this morning

After I got past myself in a swimsuit (scared me) the hot bubbles did their magic. I was officially defrosted and the core that is me – stopped shivering, I started to see my life differently.
Perspective really is a grand thing. 
Mostly, I try not to look around spa pools much. If I get thinking too much about what could possibly be floating in the water – I start to implode and wish to bound of that place faster than I got myself in there.

Dreams are free

Whilst in a spa pool, I close my eyes and imagine I’m somewhere else. That place I imagine (and take myself to regularly) has always been:


Yes, this gorgeous lovely place…

In fact – I imagine this place more than in a spa pool on a freezing weekday morning. Read my ‘super housewife’ story for more examples of where I imagine FIJI.

This is the vision I have of myself in Fiji

This is what I plan to do in Fiji while the kids are in kids club. I also plan to sleep but not like a polar bear.
OK – not quite ready for the swimsuit but you get my drift. I’ll get working on my Fiji body soon and shortly I show you why I have the time to prepare.

And this is the nice man serving me my drink. I’m planning on indulging in plenty ‘Penina Coladas.’

My spa pool epiphany

Anyway, while I was dreaming about ‘FIJI’ in the spa pool this morning – I had an epiphany.
This happened shortly after I opened my eyes momentarily and realised I wasn’t actually in FIJI but in a yikky pool with a bunch of strangers.
Drum roll…
I should go to FIJI. I should simply pack up the hubby and kids and myself and GO there.

Note: I am an eternally positive and self-motivated person – but there’s always a ‘BUT’ with us mums.

So then on the drive back home – I got thinking…

What’s been stopping me?

Here’s what I figured out in my freshly defrosted head.
This is what has stopped me from booking my family and I a trip to FIJI. All in dot points for your reading pleasure:

  1. I don’t have the cash right now due to that awful money-sapping life-sucking renovation I’m in
  2. I’m not putting it on a credit card. I don’t believe in credit cards – Haven’t had one since 2008 and never will (Note: See below for a note on that)
  3. I’ve got so many other things I need to spend the $3000 or so on right now – Dentist visits, a new fridge (mine died), a new phone (that’s dying), car registration (received in the mail – not fun to pay) and the list goes on (Yep – that’s about $3k)
  4. Every time we go on holiday is to visit family (mine in NZ) as that’s usually a priority and the only break we can afford and will fork out for

I like to think of the following as more like ‘not yet a millionaire.’
Kinda softens the blow…

Then – as I’m rummaging around in my handbag for the keys to get back into my grimy dusty house I’m pondering:

Why are my friends not going on holiday either?

And here’s a list of just some of them:

  1. In the middle of a divorce – busy clutching to money, the kids and life
  2. Building a townhouse in their backyard and working two jobs
  3. Driving a 3-hour round trip to work and just trying to get through traffic
  4. Working full-time and part-time just to pay the bills
  5. Running businesses and putting all their money and time into start-up ventures
  6. So busy with little kids the day is a blur (is hard to think a straight thought)

On behalf of them, I say:

Stuff this…

Kids need a holiday too

From their parents!

My one friend who can afford a holiday is sitting on a $400k inheritance, but is a homebody and hates to leave the house.
Go figure – I guess we always want what we can’t have…

So now I’m making coffee (and behind in my day because I took some ‘me-time’ in a spa pool) and I’m thinking this:

So how have we all funded any of the holidays we’ve been on?

Here are two historical examples:

  • My family: A trip in December last year to my brother’s wedding in NZ that took us three months to financially recover from – after we got home (We spent savings we needed for the New Year. (Great wedding – sad wallet)
  • One of my friends: A trip to the U.S on the credit card, then consolidated into the mortgage that they’re still paying off with huge interest

So now I’m at my desk drinking coffee and I’m researching this stuff…

Travelling on a credit card

Here’s something to ponder:
If you are a credit card lover here are some facts about travel you might want to know:

  • Nearly 60%* of Australians don’t pay their credit card in full each month
  • Many pay anywhere from 13.5 to 20.5% + interest on their trips
  • 20% gets wiped out any perceived ‘special deal’
  • A $5000 trip becomes $6000
  • Many people are encouraged to ‘consolidate’ their credit card debt into their mortgages
  • Many holiday-goers end up spending more than the original ticket price and pay their trip off for a much longer period compounding the problem

This begs the question:

What’s it all for – this treadmill of work and no fun?

  1. Surely there’s an answer to this.
  2. Surely I can turn my FIJI dream (I’ve had this dream a long time) into reality.

Here are a few reasons why I need to get to FIJI

  • Because life is for living
  • Tired people need a rest
  • Everyone needs to recharge
  • Life is short
  • The kids need a break – renovations are hard on them
  • I work like a dog and I’m tired
  • I need me, me, me time and more me time
  • Family time
  • I want to lie on a real beach NOT in a spa pool dreaming of one
  • I like the idea of a family friendly holiday
  • I need to go somewhere there’s a kids club

I like people who can turn my dreams into reality

My mother said to me once:
“We always get what we want.”
I love this expression and I find this is true over time. Eventually I believe you can make anything happen.
So another drum roll…
I was absolutely, overwhelmingly chuffed to discover this fantastic concept, idea and website where I can do this:

LAYBY MY HOLIDAY – YEY!!!!!!!!!!!!

Seriously – I felt as happy as these people:

I wasn’t even aware this was possible and in fact, I discovered it’s a brand new new concept in Australia.
In brief – I can Layby my next holiday for as little as $2.14 per person!!!

Yippeee – we’re off to FIJI!!!!!

Here’s the visual of me in FIJI in 12 months time (my kids are at kids club and hubby is out on a boat).

Here’s how this works at Layaway Travel and it’s so simple:

  1. Choose your destination – View the packages or design your own. Travel alone or take a group. It’s up to you.
  2. Select your options – Extra days or extra people? Choose your layby payment period from 3 to 24 months.
  3. Start your payment plan – Daily, weekly or monthly layby schedule. You choose. You focus on the fun stuff.
  4. Time to get packing! They send your tickets and documents and you get on your way.

Important discount for Savings Room subscribers

I was so excited about this site that I got in touch with Layaway Travel and asked them for a discount for my subscribers. So if you submit this code: Savings100Room when booking with them you’ll receive $100 off your booking or credit to go towards a meal, Champagne, facial, jet ski hire or whatever you like. 

Here are the current destinations they have on offer:

Screen Shot 2016-08-08 at 9.38.18 am

Stay tuned for my next exciting post where I’ll be:

  1. Reviewing best time to go to FIJI (I’m thinking August 2017)
  2. What options we’ll be selecting

I’ll also be posting more about our impending trip on social media – so stay tuned for that too.

We’re all so excited!!!!

Goodbye Melbourne arctic weather – hello sunshine!!!!!

Until then – no more spa pools for me. I’m putting that $7 towards my trip!
Follow my trip on Facebook and Twitter.

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