The last year has been somewhat of a tough one for the ROB household. As many readers know, Mrs. ROB and I are actively trying to have a family. Our initial IVF treatment was successful, but Mrs. ROB unfortunately miscarried so you can imagine what Mother’s Day was like for her. Our 2nd round didn’t go as well. So we are starting another round and it was recommended that Mrs. ROB/we join a group where couples/particularly women can go, talk about their IVF experiences, infertility, learn meditation, etc.
So far it seems to be a success. Last weekend we had an all-day event for couples and one of the activities we did was to generate a life map. Each person got to do their own. Since I am not the most artistic in the world my map was primarily text and stick figures. One of the things that I put on that map were some future goals/aspirations. And it got me to thinking about what are your financial dreams? Maybe a better question is what are your financial goals because those are more attainable, but it is nice to dream as well. So today I thought I would share a few financial dreams of mine.
My Financial Dreams
I feel like I should be belting out the lyrics to the Moody Blues’ hit “Wildest Dreams” but I digress.
First, living abroad for at least a year. I would love to have the ability and enough money where I/we could live abroad for a year or more. Ideally that would be in a place that we could afford. Certainly places like Mexico, Panama, Ecuador, Thailand are the cheapest (see these awesome articles on retiring abroad here and here). However, ideally I would love for it to be in Europe somewhere because there is so much there I would love to explore, particularly the history. That would be fantastic.
Second, buy a house in Iceland. Ever since my wife and I went to Iceland for the first time in 2010 we fell in love with it. The people are friendly, the climate was fine with us (I don’t mind the cold and it isn’t as cold as you think it is compared to say living in Minnesota where we are both from). We just absolutely loved it. Now the language would be a bit of a barrier, but everyone speaks English and the like. We would love to buy a flat and I have even looked online to see what it would cost, but Iceland is expensive to live and retire. We just don’t have enough money to do so (not yet at least).
Third, live/buy a house on the water. One of the great things I love about living in New England is that we are so close to the water. I love the smell of the sea. I am also from Minnesota where we have 10,000 (over that by the way) lakes where you can be on a boat within a matter of minutes in many places. For me, there is something really calming about watching a thunderstorm roll in as it cascades and rains over the water. I dream about sitting on my deck and watching the tides roll in or lap around the lake rocks. I mean I wouldn’t be a fan of the mosquitoes (particularly near a lake) but owning a home on the water (ocean or lake cabin) is something I have wanted for a very long time.
Fourth, I would like to just take a couple months and travel. I admit that I am just slightly envious of some personal finance bloggers who have sold everything and just live in different places abroad. They will spend a month here or a few weeks here, etc. In many respects, it sounds ideal to me (check out Millennial Revolution and Go Curry Cracker for two of my favorites). I mean it would be great to stay in luxury hotels and/or other living accommodations but I don’t even need that. I would be fine with just hanging out in Air BnB places and doing that for a while or doing a short-term rental apartment. However, trying to have a kid and having a dog does impede that dream somewhat.
Fifth, go on a golf vacation. I love to play golf. Yes, that doesn’t make me the most frugal personal finance blogger out there, but I admit it I love to play golf. I would love to take some friends and just for a long weekend go to Hilton Head or some other golf paradise and just play for a week. Primarily, I like the camaraderie of golf (the drinking afterwards doesn’t hurt). I am not very good, but I just like the serenity of the golf course and knowing that it is me against myself, but going beyond my local public golf course would be nice.
Finally, be a guest lecturer at a variety of universities. A few years ago, we welcomed a guest scholar into one of my academic groups. He was a famous scholar who had retired (somewhat early) and now was making the rounds at different appointments at schools. That semester he was teaching at Harvard. I thought what a great experience and how much I would love to do that. Spending a semester or two at some of prestigious universities where you get to just teach and soak in the atmosphere. That is a geek’s DREAM!!! Now this isn’t necessarily a financial dream I would have to be at a certain level in my career to do this, but it would be really cool to spend a couple of years post-retirement being a visiting professor for a semester or two at some prestigious schools across the United States or world.
Notice that most of my dreams involve travel of some kind. I have no desire to buy a fancy car (goes down in value too much) or to have a huge mansion (too big to clean). I just want to see the world, soak up knowledge, and convey it to others. If I could fulfill a couple of these dreams then that would make life so much sweeter than it already has been. And as much as I complain, worry, get angry about my financial situation. I know that I am a lot luckier and better off than others. I give thanks for that all of the time, but that still doesn’t mean I can’t dream.
What are your financial dreams? Put them in the comments below.