I’m down in Phoenix for the inaugural Women’s Personal Finance Long Weekend, so I’m going to keep this short. Yes, I realize I could have just skipped writing today, but since I skipped last week, I wanted to put down at least a few words today.

For those of you who aren’t bloggers, it’s a common thing for those with blogs to start of writing a lot, then slow down to a lesser publishing schedule, until they stop writing altogether.

While Women’s Personal Finance is clearly where most of my online energy goes these days, I’m quite attached to this space here at Tread Lightly, Retire Early, and have no plans on quitting completely anytime soon. After all, I’m about to hit my five year anniversary here in July.

Friday’s Frugal Five

1. My flight down here was early Wednesday morning, but when I looked up the cost for a Lyft, I just about fell over. I sent a picture to my neighbor to commiserate about the price, and when her mouth finally stopped hanging open, she told me she would absolutely drive me, even at o’dark thirty.

I pushed back initially because it was so early, but then I relented and gratefully accepted. Once again, we have some absolutely wonderful neighbors, and I am doing my best to say yes more often when people offer help. Always I want to be the helper, but allowing yourself to be the one who’s helped is just as important.

I got to meet Kristin IRL for the very first time when our planes arrived at the same time on Wednesday!

2. Since my flight came in on Wednesday morning and our event didn’t start until Thursday afternoon, I had the day available to visit a friend who moved from Seattle to Phoenix a few years ago. They’re someone I’ve known since elementary school, and it was so good to spend the day together.

With the event coming up and knowing I’d be in a house full of women for the weekend, I asked to wear masks in their house as an extra precaution for the bit of time we spent inside. They readily agreed, as did their partner and (grudgingly) their teenage son.

What they said surprised me though – after living in a place where no one has cared at all about COVID precautions, it was actually enjoyable for them to wear masks at the behest of someone else, because it was clear I gave a damn.

Short hike near their house – accessible trail so their kiddo could join us

3. Regina and I then were able to stay with another friend who was coming to the event on Wednesday night who had hotel points to cover the stay. It was wonderful to have a low key evening with the three of us before the wonderful madness of fifteen women together for the weekend, and the fact that it was free was that much better.

4. Thankfully I did also have enough Alaska points to cover the flight, so that was another cost. We had planned this event almost a year ago, and it was originally scheduled for January, but we pushed it when it was clear we were beginning another surge and a lot of the attendees had small, unvaccinated children.

Costs have gone up so much in that year, and it’s been good to have some free covered parts of the trip to balance out a bit the increase.

Setup before everyone arrived

5. Unrelated to this trip, bird flu has finally officially made it to Washington state. I’d been watching the news carefully, with the caveat that I would be locking up our chickens as soon as it was for sure local.

We built a very large covered run attached to the chicken coop, so the girls do have enough space inside. They love foraging and their dust baths though, so I let them free range the side yard as long as possible. Bird flu is no joke though, so until the situation changes, they are no longer outside to have any contact with wild birds that might be carrying disease.

With how many large commercial flocks that have already been euthanized across the country and in Europe, having our own eggs feels pretty good. Both to hedge against even higher prices, and just knowing that we have a regular supply right here at home.

5 thoughts on “Friday’s Frugal Five (COVID-19 Week 115)

  1. Long time reader, first time commenter. Thanks for what you do. I always enjoy reading your post on Fridays! Wondering how you like that particular N95. We bought some KN95’s recently and they definitely don’t feel as secure/fitted which has me nervous, so I’d love to hear if those are comfortable and feel protective. Thanks!

    1. The N95 I wore for the trip was excellent!! It felt so much safer for the plane trips. I’ll ask my friend for the link and will report back 🙂

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