We've spent a bomb.

Far more than we anticipated or planned for. Cars cost a mint for anything comparable to a cheap car in the UK. By that I mean that our 95 rav 4 cost 10K and my 2003 maxima cost 22K.

All the little things add together very quickly, we have been trying to set ourselves up for a long term stay from day one and have bought new bikes and boards and wetsuits (beds, electric blankets, bbq's, lawnmower, the list goes on) etc and also spent 1800 on phonecalls alone!

since we arrived weve spent 75K (all dollars) and it doesn't seem to have gone anywhere but there are so many hidden costs and treats, and little breaks away etc that all add up.

Good job that I've been earning since the first month otherwise we would have been stuffed (granted it's obvious we wouldnt have been spending anywhere near as much naturally).

Routine bills also add up alot, our gas and electric bill combined has been 170 per month so far which I believe is typical and we haven't had any cold weather.

Sky is an expense but also a waste of time unless you want all the sports.

I'm working for Shell and getting more than I was in the UK but it's still very tight. Little things like child support used to add in and other tax things and also Linda is not working at the mo.

People are starting to come and see us, first one next month and were having to carefully plan what we are going to do to watch the budget.

Give yourself as much leeway as possible, only spend what you need for the start and then maybe afterwards commit to some more stuff. We did it the other way round to allow us to settle in better and be set for the future, but boy does it cost.

Hope this helps a little.

paul