Hi! I'm Tansy.
I'm 26, studying computer science (for free, online from home, with the aid of my software engineer boyfriend), working part time in a cafe. The boyfriend pays 75% of the rent and all of the groceries and utilities. I do the cooking/cleaning/clothing repairs/bed warming. As his income is approximately 8x mine, and he had previously survived on take out for lunch and ordering in for dinner this arrangement works out as a net savings for both of us.
We live in Hoboken NJ where we pay a ridiculous amount for a 650sq ft one bedroom apartment (though still 1600/mo less than a similar space in Manhattan cost us, not to mention a $300/mo tax cut for him. NYC income tax is a bitch.) he commutes to work via a combination of foot and commuter train travel (except when it's raining, or he doesn't feel like going in, when he works from home. Seriously, who wouldn't want a job this flexible??) and I study at home, and work a 5 min walk away. We own neither cars nor bicycles.
My goal is to "retire" as early as possible, and live a homesteading type existence in my home country of New Zealand. His goal is to make enormous quantities of money writing software for boot strapping asteroid mining robots and eventually live on an interstellar spacecraft/asteroid/some planet more interesting than Mars. I am resigning myself to the possibility of homesteading in a zero g environment and adding a study of aquaponics (a closed system involving the production of fruit/veg and fish- we're setting up a mini system in our living room now.), plumbing, welding, and electrical systems to my existing base of construction, equine massage, farming and computer science.
In the mean time, He has nearly finished paying off his student loans and is interviewing at Google next week. I am studying and using part time income to pay off existing debt- Student loans of about 10k, nothing else. Yes, I studied music, international business, equine management/massage, environmental economics, and hospitality before deciding the best thing to do now is to learn to successfully make money and then go do more interesting things. On the bright side: I can climb trees and wield chain saws, maintain large machinery, weld, drive stick, ride horseback, provide soft tissue massage, do simple plumbing, plaster interior walls, build simple structures, make repairs, build a methane digester, knit and sew, mix cocktails, find my way around with a topographical map and a compass, make fantastic espresso, cook seriously tasty food for cheap, talk to strangers, build a solar oven/dehydrator, butcher a sheep/deer/cow/rabbit/pig, hit a target with a rifle ( I admit to still missing every time when that target is still alive. Perversely, I can hit a dead rabbit in the head 5 times out of 5 from the same distance I missed it at twice while it was still alive.), preserve meat and veg and fruit in a variety of ways, and reason moderately well. I figure most of those will come in handy eventually.
Since reading this blog (I just finished all of the posts) I finally applied for my first ever credit card ( I have NO credit history in this country. Not bad, just none and I need to fix that) Paid an extra grand off my debt last month. Doing no spending for the rest of this month in order to pull that off again this month, and have upped the time I spend studying so as to at least double my income some time this year. I've also recently gotten access to my parents costco membership and they will drive me to costco and home again in their brand new Prius for the price of a home cooked meal and a bottle of wine. This is excellent as we currently (don't hurt me) order in overpriced groceries from Fresh Direct. The boy doesn't mind because it's still under half what he used to spend on sushi in a month, but a $600/mo grocery bill for two people and 3 cats is ridiculous.
Anyhow, enough waffling. I have a lot to thank this blog for already, and much, much more in the future, I have no doubt.