We’re Getting A Lil’ StiR CRazY – Date Nights On A Budget

Although we have this fantastic adventure ahead of us, I have been feeling a little out of sorts lately. These last few weeks have been really difficult for me. I think it’s a mixture of feeling restless and a little stressed.

It doesn’t help that this never ending Chicago winter has kept us indoors. We haven’t had many  opportunities for hiking, sunshine, and fresh air. In the spirit of diligent saving, we have given up dinners & drinks out to unwind after a long week at work. (I’m soooo sick of cooking every meal!)  It’s also been stressful to adhere to our strict budget while trying to fulfill my duty as matron of honor in my sister’s upcoming wedding.

All I know is that we’re starting to get a little StiR CRazy! So what’s a budget savvy traveler to do? I have been scouring the internet looking for some ways to decompress and to relieve some of this cabin fever.

The good news is that living in a big city, there are lots of great things to do on a limited budget. In fact, I have found some great events for Harry and I that are absolutely FREE!!!

Yesterday we attended an illustrated talk at the Ernest Hemingway Museum in Oak Park, Illinois. The topic was “Hemingway the Hunter: On Safari,” which we learned about the writer’s East African safari experience and how these adventures influenced his writing. We toured the museum, enjoyed free appetizers & wine, and mingled with others who have also enjoyed Tanzania. It was a brilliant, much-needed date night out.

If you’re savvy enough, you can find great, inexpensive events to attend! We scored a brilliant seminar at the Ernest Hemingway Museum….FOR FREE!

I also tapped into our local library’s events. I couldn’t believe how many great seminars that they have available to the community at no cost! For example, there is a talk on Georgia O’Keefe’s art. The library is bringing in an Astronomer who discusses his greatest observations with the Hubble Space Telescope. There are travel related talks too, including reflections from a man who climbed Denali and author meet and greet with Pulitzer Prize winner Phillip Caputo who wrote The Longest Road.  I signed us up for a few of these events.

Harry schmoozing with the Hemingway speaker, John Barr.
Harry schmoozing with the Hemingway speaker, John Barr.

The fact is, if you look hard enough, you can still enjoy some great date nights without feeling guilty about spending your RTW savings. I suggest to check out your local libraries and see what they have to offer.

So what do you think? Have you ever found a great event for free while saving for a big trip? How about while on a big trip? If so, what was it? Please share!

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