Our Bulk Buy Lifestyle

I know I’ve written a little bit about the process of moving to Grenada, especially in this recent guest post I wrote called Expat 101: How To Move To A Foreign Country. However, one of the things that I haven’t mentioned is just how many items we bring down here every year.

Essentially, imagine going to your local big box store. You’ll probably grab your favorite brand of coffee, those razors that are on sale, and your go-to cereal. But here in Grenada, we can’t do that. Sure, they have a grocery store, but the items are by and large inconsistent from one week to the next.

So, in order to have everything we want here, we spend a good $500 – $1000 every time we go home on shampoo, deodorant, pens, pencils, folders, coffee, school books, power cords, etc. etc. etc. We literally look like pack rats with 20 lbs. of coffee and 4 bottles of my favorite lotion and seconds and thirds of a dozen of other items just stuffed into 4 bags.

Here’s a quick snapshot of one of our bags from our most recent trip:

Travelling to Grenada

You can see that we also have to buy all our vitamins, laundry detergent, and yes, even dog toys ahead of time. I actually buy Julep, our pup, 3-4 Nyla bones every year. I just keep them in a drawer and give them to her sporadically. We also have to buy her heartworm and tick medication one year in advance. That alone is $200.

It takes some planning, but it’s also just a unique part of this experience. We keep a running list throughout the year of everything we need or are missing. So far, we’ve managed to live without most things, but it sure is nice to have a little something from home when you need it! Still, I have a heart attack every time I look at the total in the checkout line at Target, but I just remind myself that I just bought toothpaste for the whole year!

Do you buy anything in bulk? Even though it’s a good deal, does it make you queasy in the checkout line?

Good Insurance is the Great Stress Reducer

PhysicianRemember when I had the most expensive day ever? It included car trouble and a scary medical issue that landed me in the ER for five hours. Then there were the CT scans and the multiple doctors appointments, etc. Thank goodness for insurance. It only set my family back $600 or so. I am so grateful to have it.

Then, I started to think about the other types of insurance we have, and it really is the ultimate stress reducer. One that was integral for us to get was med evac insurance. Essentially, if we have a serious medical issue here in Grenada, this insurance allows us to immediately be evacuated to Miami.

To take it a step further, when the hubs got into medical school, one of the first things we did was shop for life insurance for him. After all, if my worst nightmare happens and he gets into a terrible accident, what would I do? I’d have $300,000+ in medical school loans to pay without the medical school degree or the physician’s income.

Most people don’t realize how affordable some types of insurance can be. We only pay $22 a month for his life insurance, and in a worst case scenario, it will be there if I need it.

I’m sure that in the future, we will be purchasing many other types of insurance. You can bet that we’ll be heavily researching any company to make sure it has a solid history, like Lloyds of London, which has been around for 300+ years.

Essentially, insurance is one of those things that you hope you never have to use, but you’re so very glad when it’s there.

How many different types of insurance do you have? Has it ever come seriously in handy?

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons