Things Money Can’t Buy

Things Money Can’t Buy

I’ve mentioned before that I love to travel. I love seeing new places, hanging out with locals, and eating at restaurants you can’t find locally. The way I am able to do this is by budgeting and of course, my favorite, using credit card reward points. There was one trip a few years ago that I used absolutely no points for, and even though it was a trip we paid a little extra for, I realized that there are memories that are worth it. There are things that might throw your budget a little off, but they are things money can’t buy.

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Things Money Can Buy

In summer of 2015, we decided to take our first vacation as a family ever since my brothers and I were kids. Our parents were on board, all the brothers and wives or girlfriends were on board and although it took a while to plan, we finally managed it. We decided on Toronto, Canada. We rented a hotel in downtown Toronto and rented a car so that we could go check out Niagara Falls while we were there. It was all beautiful. The city itself, the Falls, the people, the food, it was all amazing to take that in.

Things Money Can’t Buy

After leaving Niagara Falls, we went to eat at a local restaurant and as we sat, our dad just sat back for a minute and said he had to take it all in. I asked him if the waterfall impressed him, but he said he wasn’t talking about that.

You see my dad is a first-generation immigrant in the United States. He left Cuba during the Mariel Boatlift in 1980. We lived in Puerto Rico for years and throughout that time we never had much. We were happy kids, we were never hungry or anything like that. My city isn’t exactly known for money so we didn’t see ourselves any different than anyone else. For a few years, it was 6 of us living in a two bedroom, where we took turns sleeping in the one open bedroom (the other one was my parents), or the living room couch. Like I mentioned though, we grew up happy. These things didn’t bother us, they were just the facts of life.

What my dad was taken aback with was the fact that we could all do this. He had no idea that when he moved us here from Puerto Rico in 1993 that it would be the best choice he ever made. That his 4 kids would be homeowners, and besides homeowners, have the means to travel to another country. He had never seen anything like Niagara Falls and he admired its beauty, but what he would never have dreamed about was us having dinner in another country.

The Point Is…

My dad is usually very serious and a closed up guy. To hear him talk like this made me realize that it isn’t all black and white. Yeah, I adjusted the budget when I got back home. I had to make up for this trip. But I don’t regret it for a moment. I realized that these moments are just some of the things money can’t buy.

We all want to keep moving forward. I track my net worth to one day reach financial freedom like the rest of us. But sometimes its ok to make a memory with the ones we love. Remember, none of us are going to make it out alive in the end. My goal to retire well before the age of 65 is still the same. I just don’t want to lose any of the precious time I could be having today.

Have you spent Money on Something You Definitely Don’t Regret? Id Love To Hear It.

Published by Gabe A

Gabe A. is the creator of The Shiny Dollar. Besides writing and helping others with their finances, he loves to travel and spend time with his family.


Wow your dad must be so proud! I would love to travel more but I think it will wait since we have other expenses to take care of. I also don’t want to dip into emergency savings AND rely on tax returns. We just have to survive until our son starts kindergarten then hopefully we don’t have to be so uptight with our money lol. Just two years to go lol.
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These next few years will be challenging. This coming year we are going to be right on the edge with money. We have to be extremely strict. If we do have our next baby in 2019 like we planning, the time when they are both in daycare is gonna be when we cut from all these spending accounts. But we might as well enjoy until then right ??


Great article. ­ I find experiences are never a waste of money. Buying stuff I usually regret.


I agree! There is something about experiences that make it worthwhile. I don’t buy a lot of things and try to save up to see things instead!

Thanks for your comment Steve!


What a great reminder. I am big on experiencing life, and not worrying too much about the future. It’s good to be prepared but, there is a point where it becomes overkill. I’m excited to be able to travel with my kids one day!


Yeah there is only so much we can control right? I just try to make good decisions from now!

And we love traveling, but there a ton of ways to create memories. Theres something about the nostalgia from thinking back on past trips though that gets me…

Thanks for your comment Allie!


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