When it comes to reading books, I prefer reading in English, rather than Norwegian. I`ve been reading English books since I was about 11 years old, but I think a more conscious choice began when I had read the first four Harry Potter books in Norwegian. I was of course a big fan from day one, but when I realized that I had to wait nearly a year or so for book nr 5 to be published in Norwegian, the solution was easypeasy. I chose the English version that had just been published.
From that day on, I learned that since all of my favourite authors were English/American, I could get a hold of their books easier if I read them in English, rather than waiting for the Norwegian version. It later turned out to be more economical as well, since in Norwegian bookstores, the English versions are often cheaper than the norwegian ones. However, a couple of years ago I also discovered the magic world of ordering books online from England.
As I`m currently studying English literature and linguistics, I can usually order about 90 per cent of the books on the syllabus online, which saves me a lot of money! I`m talking 40 – 50 % of what I would have had to pay in the bookstore on campus.
I know that a lot of people are afraid of ordering online from other countries, but if you keep to the well-known sites, like amazon.co.uk, which is the one I frequently use, everything should run smoothly. It usually takes longer for Norwegian bookstores to process my orders and for me to receive them, than from overseas. Besides, ordering books to Norway is both tax and duty-free!!
So for now, I’ll be keeping my amazon-attachment close at heart because I love saving money on books!
– Blonde on Budget
When it comes to coffee I`ve got a real weak spot for it. Particularly cozy coffeeshops selling delicious french pastries. I can literally feel an ache in my soul for a freshly baked croissant and a latte just now. Probably because I haven`t had a real latte for several weeks. I guess its the withdrawal symptoms. Nevertheless, I have to keep in mind that in just a couple of weeks I`ll be back in the big city.. Oh how it feels like forever!
However, my point with this latte-mindwandering text is to look at the economic downside of lattes. Oh yes, they really do exist. The average cost of a latte in O-town is probably about 35 kr. Now then, 35 kr doesn`t sound much, but let`s say you buy one about 5 times a week. In one year, that amounts to 9100 kr! I don`t know about you, but I would rather spend those x-thousands on something else than coffee and hot milk.
Therefore, my goal so far in 2012 have been to limit my latte-drinking to once a week, preferably on saturdays, which moneywise would amount to 1820 kr. This way, visiting coffeeshops turns into something more special, and I`ll save a load of money on it!
And honestly, it´s not exactly superhealthy drinking latte`s all week long either when you got a sweettooth like me, and just have to add some delicious demerera sugar into the mix…
– Blonde on Budget
“I love books. I like that the moment you open one and sink into it you can escape from the world, into a story that`s way more interesting than yours will ever be”
– Elizabeth Scott
As long as I can remember I`ve had a love for the written word. My mother always read to me when I was a little child, and as I grew older and started reading by myself, I discovered a whole new world. Countless of books have been read ever since I deciphered the code of reading.
At home, reading all the time was considered normal, so when I visited my friends` families where books were no where near as important as in our home, that`s when I realized how lucky I was.
I guess I always found the support and escape I needed when I dived into a new story, as I never really was a supersocial kid. I had my friends of course, but I was with them all day at school, so when I came home I really enjoyed that quiet me-time reading books could give me.
As an adult I`ve kept my fondness for a good book, though I rarely have as much time as I would like. still, I reckon myself to be a real booknerd, as it takes a lot of will power not to stop and enter any bookstore I may encounter, and I suppose the fact that I study English literature at University, might also be a part of it.
– Blonde on Budget
A couple of years ago my parents decided to move back to Norway for a while and decided to drive from south of Spain to north of Norway, which is a pretty long way to drive, so they decided to make it into a fun roadtrip, and this is where I come into the picture. the moment I heard they wanted to drive through France I was all like,”hey, I have some time off school, want to spend some quality time with your precious daughter??” as I`ve always had this dream of experiencing France by car. I guess you`ve already figured out the result of my subtle begging; of course they wanted me to join them!
I hopped on a plane to Barcelona and joined them there. as I arrived late at night and we had a tight schedule to stick to, unfortunately I didn`t get a chance to experience Barcelona as the next morning we were on the road. Because I had this crazy idea of visiting as many countries as possible I persuaded my parents to drive over the Pyrenees in order to make a lunch stop in Andorra. oh yes, I had this fancy idea of posting the following words on facebook: “breakfast in Barcelona, lunch in Andorra and dinner in Toulouse”. sounds nice, right?
The result however, was exhausting. driving over a mountainchain in one day wasn`t really that fun. and andorra? well, that was a fiasco. we arrived there on a sunday and late in the afternoon, so everything was closed except some coffeeshops, where they didn`t even get my order right. I mean, how difficult can it really be to make a cafe con leche y leche? and frankly, a small, overcrowded city between some really high mountains wasn`t all that impressive. and to make matters worse, the GPS started acting real funny and told us to drive in the opposite direction than all the road signs.
But we did end up in the right direction in the end though, a road that seriously must have been the most frightful road ever. we were driving higher and higher and higher(!!!) and the fog was getting heavier and heavier, and to top it all off, cars were driving in 80-90 km/h in this horrible place, which felt terribly fast when it was impossible to see anything… however, we did survive this excruciating journey to France, and boy was I happy when we were closing in on Toulouse, and my first goal in france, a medieval town called Carcassonne. but more on that later!
After a lot of time considering whether or not if I should start blogging, I finally came to the decision that, yes, I would give it a try. I have a lot of free time this summer which I presume is one of the reasons why I`ve created this blog. I`ve had all these ideas about what I would blog about if I ever had one, so hopefully I`ll be able to take those ideas out of my head and write them down and share them with all of you!
Now then, I guess I should start saying something about what I`m all about and what this blog hopefully will contain. I`d like to think that the name Blonde on Budget should really say it all– i.e. I`m a blonde who is trying to live more carefully financially speaking, as I`m a fulltime student and simply don`t have that much money to spend. which is why I want to share my thoughts, ideas and experiences on life without a million dollars in the bank.
See you soon!
– The Blonde on Budget