Happy New Year

Wow, I can’t believe it’s 2016 already. Between Mrs. T’s family visiting from Denmark, getting ready for Christmas, celebrating Christmas, being the self-proclaimed Vancouver tour guide, attending good friends’ wedding, and taking care of a sick toddler, the last two weeks just flew by. I meant to write a 2015 reflection post before the end of year but I didn’t quite get around to it. Maybe that will come later. 🙂

It was an interesting experience hosting 5 family members as this marked the largest amount of people we’ve ever had at our place for an extended period of time. Because Scandinavians celebrate Christmas on the 24th, we had Christmas dinner and opened our gifts on the night of the 24th. (Side note: I guess Scandinavians kids don’t believe in Santa Claus?). Thanks to the “early” Christmas celebration, we were able to spend the entire day skiing at a somewhat deserted local ski resort on the 25th. It had been over 2.5 years since I strapped on my telemark skis, so it was great being back on the slopes. Boy did my quads ever burn. 🙂

While I knew Mrs. T’s family drink A LOT of coffee, I was shocked to see that they drank through about 5 months worth of our Nespresso coffee capsule supply. Mrs. T and I usually drink one cup of coffee per person each day, but her family drank around 5 or 6 cups a day per person!!! Being budget conscious, I was feeling slightly annoyed because that meant we had to spend extra money to restock our coffee supply. After a couple of days of slight annoyance, I realized that I was being very selfish and I should stop sweating the small stuff. Mrs. T’s family traveled all the way from Denmark to celebrate Christmas with us, we were the ones that invited them, and I should be a good host and enjoy their company. Who cares if we had to spend another $100 to restock our coffee supply? In the long run, what are we going to remember? The great time we had over Christmas in 2015? Or that extra $50, $100, $150, or whatever amount that we had to spend on coffee? Being someone who’s so focused on becoming financially independent, sometimes I’m guilty on analyzing numbers too closely. While reducing expenses is extremely important, I need to constantly remind myself that there are other important things in life. It’s important to find the balance between reducing expenses and enjoying life.

On another personally related note, it was great to see good friends’ of mine finally tied the knot after dating for 10 years. I’ve known the groom for about 14 years and the bride for 10 years. It’s amazing how time flew by so fast. It also reminds me that today is the second best time to start investing for the future and taking another step toward financial independence. If we just keep telling ourselves that we can save for retirement later, pretty soon we’ll be in our 60’s with very little saved up. Time is something that nobody can buy, we must remember that time is precious and we only have limited amount to use. Make the best of our time.

Ok, enough blabbing, we’ll get back to a regular blogging schedule next week. For now, in case you haven’t fallen asleep yet, please check out the great interview I did with Mr. 1500 at 1500 Days to Freedom.

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26 Comments

  • Reply
    Financial Underdog
    January 2, 2016 at 12:05 am

    Happy New Year to you to, brother. Sometimes you have to stop thinking about numbers and just smell the roses 😀

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:51 am

      Happy new year to you too Financial Underdog. Yes to smell the roses more.

  • Reply
    DivHut
    January 2, 2016 at 12:52 am

    Sounds like an amazing holiday time spent with family. It’s always fun when several family members come in for a visit. After all, it’s usually a rare occurrence when family members live far from you. So enjoy that coffee 🙂 drink up, and relish these experiences. That’s what life is all about. Have a great 2016. Look forward to reading about your dividends, life and more.

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:51 am

      Yup definitely need to sit back and enjoy the coffee and family time. Happy 2016.

  • Reply
    Team CF
    January 2, 2016 at 6:34 am

    “Being someone who’s so focused on becoming financially independent, sometimes I’m guilty on analyzing numbers too closely. While reducing expenses is extremely important, I need to constantly remind myself that there are other important things in life. It’s important to find the balance between reducing expenses and enjoying life.”

    Oh, boy, that sounds awfully familiar!

    Happy new year to guys too!

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:52 am

      Haha I guess we’re all guilty for doing that. Happy new year to you and your family Team CF.

  • Reply
    weenie
    January 2, 2016 at 6:53 am

    Happy New Year, Tawcan.

    I know exactly how you felt with the coffee situation. When I had my folks coming over to stay with me a couple of years ago, all my utility bills went up and it did make me annoyed, until I realised how unimportant it was compared to the fact that I was spending time with my family when they are usually on the other side of the world.

    They’re planning another trip later this year, so I’ll be thinking of the important stuff and not sweating the small stuff.

    All the best for 2016!

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:53 am

      Yeah our utility bills went up too. They were complaining that the indoor temperature was too cold. 🙂

      You’re right, it’s more important to spend time with the family and enjoy the time rather than getting annoyed with the temporary expenses. Happy 2016 to you too weenie.

  • Reply
    mraitn
    January 2, 2016 at 7:21 am

    We sure do like our coffee. Here, I am not considered a heavy consumer even though I drink 3-4 cups/day. I even know people who brings their own coffee when traveling abroad, I can totally see why outside people would think that is crazy even though it is not a big deal here. Scandinavia is generally not very religious country but most kids here do believe in Jultomten 🙂

    Happy new year to you!
    – mraitn

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:54 am

      Hi mraitn,

      3-4 cups a day is way more than I drink. 🙂 Good to know that most Scandinavian kids believe in Jultomten.

  • Reply
    Roadmap2Retire
    January 2, 2016 at 8:37 am

    Happy New Year Tawcan. I concur with your assessment. I usually try and avoid paying close attention to the food and grocery bills when we have visitors as that just ruins the experience esp when I was the one who invited them over.

    Glad you had a great Xmas break and hope Baby T got better soon to enjoy the time with you guys.

    Best
    R2R

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:54 am

      Hi R2R,

      Thanks, happy new year to you too.

  • Reply
    Mr. SSC
    January 2, 2016 at 9:51 am

    I ran into the same situation with the inlaws when they switched to keurig exclusively. Even though we’d bring K cups with us, I’d drink 5-8 a day and that gets expensive for us and them. So, we bought a $10 coffee pot that I use when we visit so I can drink as much coffee as I want guilt free, lol. Those things do add up but it’s good to keep perspective.
    We keep a coffee pot in the pantry for when they visit here. He’s not a fan of the French press, and we thought traveling with their keurig was excessive, so that was our compromise.
    Happy new year!

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:55 am

      Holy cow, 5-8 cups a day? Wow that’s a lot. Funny that you bought your own coffee when you visit. Happy new year to you & your family too.

  • Reply
    talesfromthetape
    January 2, 2016 at 10:26 am

    Sounded like a great xmas! Hit the slopes myself for the first time in 3 years, could hardly walk for the next 2 days lol…i think the days of me getting air again are long gone 🙂 My big pain point is buying coffee when i should just buy the beans. So much cheaper, it is just utter laziness why i don’t do it so we’ll see if i can improve this year. It doesn’t help that there is a coffee shop or 3 every other block in downtown Vancouver on the way to work. Looking forward to 2016. Best, T

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:57 am

      Haha I know that feeling of not able to walk for the next 2 days. The other day when we went for a walk, we brought our own late in our coffee cups instead of buying from a cafe. Saving for the win. 🙂

  • Reply
    Dividend Diplomats
    January 2, 2016 at 11:04 am

    Well Tawcan, it sounds like you had an amazing Christmas vacation and you were a great host/tour guide of your wonderful city. Bottom Line. Spending time with your family during the holiday seasons is what it is all about, especially if you get the chance to have an extended stay with those who typically are not nearby. Hosting is just expensive and it can be hard to get around that fact. Similar to you, I used to get upset at the extra $$ it would cost to have people over and provide them with food/coffee/beer etc. However, I have just learned to tolerate it and we usually mitigate the cost by making a ton of food that results in amazing leftovers or spacing out the times we host. I don’t mind spending a lot if it only happens periodically. Glad to hear that you didn’t let the small things get in the way of a great time and it is a great example for me to follow in the future.

    Also, congrats on the wonderful news about your friend. Sounds like you will have a very fun wedding to be a part of in 2016. Take care!

    Bert

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:58 am

      Hi Bert,

      Yup, enjoying the experience and time with family is more important than the temporary expenses increase. Happy 2016 and can’t wait to hear more about your upcoming wedding.

  • Reply
    Geblin
    January 2, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    Sounds like a great Chrismas!

    Have a good 2016!

    Cheers,
    Geblin

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:58 am

      Hi Geblin,

      Thanks happy new year to you too. Here’s to a great 2016.

  • Reply
    allaboutinterest
    January 2, 2016 at 2:57 pm

    Happy New Year! It sounds like you had a busy Christmas. I run through a LOT of Nespresso capsules myself. I wish you could buy them cheaper somewhere besides from their website. I suppose I could buy enough Nestle to provide the dividend income to pay for them and I wouldn’t feel so bad about it lol.

    I hope you have a good 2016!

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 4, 2016 at 11:59 am

      I’d love it if we can buy the capsules on a discount. Good call on buying Nestle.

  • Reply
    our next life
    January 5, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    Happy new year! I’m glad you had a nice time over the holidays, and even more glad you got your skis back on! The west should actually get some snow this year, so I hope that wasn’t a one-time occurrence. 🙂 I can definitely relate to the feeling of being frustrated by guests’ use of your resources, but I love where you ended up with it: it was a wonderful visit, they came a long way (and spent a lot of money) to see you, and it’s not a big deal to spend a little to replenish your supply. Hope your 2016 is off to a great start!

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 6, 2016 at 2:57 pm

      Happy new year to you Our Next Life! It would be nice to get some decent amount of snow this year since we had a terrible snow season in 2014-2015.

  • Reply
    divorcedff
    January 12, 2016 at 12:17 pm

    Tawcan

    Happy new year to you and your family.

    Sharon – Divorcedff

    • Reply
      Tawcan
      January 12, 2016 at 12:52 pm

      Thanks Sharon, happy 2016 to you too.

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