When you walk into our house, you’ll surely be underwhelmed with our decor, or lack there of. We’ve been in our house for three years now, and our walls are still bare but for a few pictures.
It isn’t because I don’t WANT my house to look nice. Sure, I’d love to have the Pinterest perfect house – with neutral colored walls and cute shelves adorned with little copper trinkets, and potted succulents.
But, I don’t.
Instead, our living room consists of a hand-me down couch, hand-me down end tables – complete with peeling finish, and some IKEA storage. Fancy, huh?
Brian and I don’t do presents for each other, either. If it’s a birthday, anniversary, or even Christmas, we’ll do something simple. I might buy him a DVD, or he’ll bring me flowers. Never anything over-the-top. We’ve even started doing this with Emmy too. We didn’t get her anything for Christmas.
Are you gasping in horror yet? A CHRISTMAS WITH NO PRESENTS!?
(Don’t worry, our parents bought enough for Emmy to last her until she is 14)
We actively chose to live more simply. Instead of blowing hundreds of dollars on each other on gifts throughout the year, we save. We save so that we have money to do things together. We have been doing this since we were dating, because we have believe in prioritizing experiences over things. I know, how cliche, right? But it is something we feel really strongly about though.
Our first few holidays together, we quickly figured out that we had the things we needed, and most of the gifts we got ended up in a closet collecting dust. So, we tried something new. We saved that money that we would have spent and went on a cruise together. There were so many memories made on that first trip together.
We still laugh about that cruise – even the things that were scary at the time. Like the time when the old captain of our tour boat got impaled by a sting ray on an excursion, and then continued to drive the boat back to shore. Or the time we shared a cab with a Canadian couple who told our taxi driver that they didn’t like Bob Marley…to a Jamaican…in Jamaica. We thought the cab driver was going to wreck because of how distraught she was.
Since then, our love for travel has grown. We have seen parts of the world that we never thought we would, and experienced cultures much different than our own. Each trip with it’s own set of stories. Those experiences are more treasured to me than any knick-knack I could buy to decorate my house and those memories won’t go out of style in a year.
So when people ask us how we afford to travel together, the answer is simple. We make it a priority and we make sacrifices. We don’t buy extravagant gifts, so that we can instead have lasting memories of our experiences adventuring together. Experiences over things is important to us!
To see pictures from our trip to Asia, click here!