Yoga loving hippotherapist on $85k

Money Diary: A Hippotherapist on $85K

Wondering how others spend their money? Read the money diary of a 32-year-old mother and Hippotherapist from Sydney on a $85K salary. 

Everyone spends their money differently, that’s just one of the many things that make us all unique. Some of us can’t say no to a mega sale on The Iconic, some spend most of our hard-earned dosh on amazing experiences and holidays, and some (who have mastered the art of restraint,) are great at saving for the big picture stuff without blowing the budget. There’s no wrong answer, as long as how you spend your money brings you and those you love, real joy — it’s all part of being you.

Regardless of your spending habits, there are ways to get the most bang for your buck and earn a little bit back as you click the ‘buy now’ button for those gig tickets or make your way through the grocery checkout…

Honestly though, when was the last time you were rewarded for a naughty (possibly overpriced) splurge on yourself? Or, you received a welcome surprise after hosting your fifty-four-person family for (seemingly) every birthday on the yearly calendar?

However you spend your money, with the Virgin Australia Velocity credit card, you’re in luck. Your spending, for yourself or otherwise, could have you drinking beer in Amsterdam, skiing in Switzerland or visiting historical Japanese bathhouses. And, if you were thinking you have to spend big to get big, you’d be mistaken. We ask one of our hard-working Flyers how they spend their money in a typical week
 

Hi, I'm Jen

  • Occupation: Hippotherapist (essentially occupational therapy using horses!)
  • Industry: Health
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Sydney
  • My Salary: $85,000
  • Husband’s Salary: $180,000 (Business Executive)
  • My pay (Monthly): $4,938 (after taxes and superannuation)
  • Husband’s pay (Monthly): $9,007 (after taxes, superannuation, health insurance and parking)

Monthly Expenses

(excluding mortgage which my husband pays for, my husband and I split expenses in half, so the below are my share)

  • Mortgage: $0 (My husband and I have a beautiful little house, pokey but lovely, in Marrickville)
  • Preschool: $1,500
  • Utilities and Groceries: $1,000
  • Internet: $30
  • Netflix: $5
  • Gym Membership: $54
  • Car Insurance: $33
  • Phones: $70
  • Donations: $50 (Heart Foundation)

Day One

6:00 a.m. – I wake up, get the kettle on and make my oats. Nothing’s better than starting off my day with a relaxing cup of Chai and some berry-brimming porridge.

8:00 a.m. – Arrive at work, which if I do say so myself, is pretty spectacular. My office is a paddock and my colleagues are beautiful horses.  

1:00 p.m. – I enjoy the delish lamb korma leftovers I made for my husband Mark and our three year-old Sorren, I also get to feed the six horses we have at the stables – carrots on carrots.

3:00 p.m – Head off to pick up Sorren from pre-school and blitz through the grocery aisles ($160 for meat, veg and some toiletries I’ve been needing) and we make our way to see Julia at the bakery ($3.50 for a 6 pack of rolls). $163.50

7:00 p.m – Chimichurri chicken salad and leftover wine for dinner. Lights out at 10:30pm.

Daily Total: $163.50

Day Two

6:00 a.m. – Alarm goes off – I’m wrecked. I head to my favourite local for a coffee. $4.50

8:00 a.m. – I arrive at work and get started on appointments.  

1:00 p.m. – Hello Lorna Jane sale! After twenty minutes I settle on a pair of emerald green yoga leggings that are down to $40 and will arrive tomorrow before 5p.m! $40.00

5:00 p.m. – I finish work and hop in the car hoping to beat the peak hour traffic. I stop to fill up the petrol tank ($82.40) and head home to be greeted by a huge bear hug from a tired Sorren in his favourite pyjamas. $82.40

7:00 p.m. – I take my time to put Sorren down. I read to him, sing him a lullaby, read to him again and finally he falls to sleep. Straight to sleep at 10:30pm.

Daily Total: $126.90

Day Three

6:00 a.m. – I hit snooze.

6:15 a.m. – I wake up suddenly and check my phone (Insert expletive here). I quickly do my morning routine, put on my gym gear and rush to yoga.

8:00 a.m. – I have brekkie with my friend Kath (smashed avo on toast with a side of bacon and cherry tomatoes, plus a flat white). $22.00

9:00 a.m. – I groom and exercise the horses at work all morning.

1:00 p.m. – I head to the health food store to grab a few bits and pieces - wrap bread, chicken, hummus and salad, oh and we’re out of milk. $21.60

5:00 p.m. – I whip up Mark’s favourite, homemade hamburgers – which I’m not complaining about because it’s super easy. We can all eat together and then I give Sorren a good soak in the bath and put him to bed. 

8:00 p.m. – My sister calls from overseas. Before I know it, it’s been two hours so I say goodbye and have a shower, before falling asleep at 11:00pm.

Daily Total: $43.60

Day Four

5:50 a.m – Sorren’s woken up early and attacked us in bed. He’s at such an adorable age; it’s so hard to get angry with him when he’s being loud.

8:00 a.m. – Yoga’s finished, I shower for the second time. I grab a coffee at the gym because I probably won’t have time today and head to work. $4.70

12:30 p.m. – Ah finally a break, I sit down to leftovers and realize I never had breakfast. I have three more appointments this afternoon so I eat quickly and make sure the horses are prepped and ready.

5:30 p.m. – Mark calls and asks what I want for dinner. Although I feel slightly guilty, I tell him I’m craving that Napolitana from the little Italian restaurant around the corner.

7:00 p.m. – Mark and I watch an episode of SVU in bed. I fall asleep at 10pm.

Daily Total: $4.70

Day Five

6:00 a.m. – I get up a little earlier than my alarm today and check on Sorren. He’s just woken up in bed and won’t let me go. We eat brekkie together, play outside, and then get ready for the day.

8:00 a.m. – I get to work quickly because Fridays always mean less traffic. It’s my birthday next week and one of my clients Ash and his mum bring me some choccies to celebrate. So sweet!

1:00 p.m. – Finally, I sit down for left over pasta. Suddenly I’m online shopping… this new Bec & Bridge dress would be so perfect for my birthday dinner. Before I know it, I’m confirming! $180.00

5:00 p.m. – The babysitter arrives and Mark and I head off for a night of possibly too many drinks at a friends’ birthday. We return home in the early hours of the morning and hit the pillows. Mark generously pays for the babysitter and dinner.

Daily Total: $180.00

Day Six

7:00 a.m. - Mark and Sorren wake me up from downstairs. I join them and whip up our Saturday fave – pancakes. I then head off to my trapeze session which I’ve been doing since I was young. $60.00

12:00 p.m. - Sorren and Mark meet me at trapeze and we all go to the hardware store together. We’ve wanted to landscape our garden for about a year now and Mark’s brother is a landscaper who gave us advice on what we need to get started. Mark purchases all the hardware and I pay for the sausage sandwiches. $8.00

3:00 p.m. - We head home and give Sorren a snack before I drop him over to a friend’s place. I go home to vacuum and clean the bathrooms – it’s become like therapy.  

6:00 p.m. – Mark takes me out for date night. We get an Uber into the city for a steak dinner and to see stand up from the Sydney Comedy Festival; returning home to bed at around 12:00am.

Daily Total: $68.00

Day Seven

8:00 a.m. – Lazy Sundays! Thank goodness Sorren has actually slept in this morning too so I got to snooze for a little longer.

10:00 a.m. – It’s such a beautiful day so Mum and Dad come over and we all head down to the water for a relaxed day on their most prized possession – their boat, Suzie. We spend the whole day swimming, eating sandwiches and taking too many photos of Sorren.

4:00 p.m. – Sorren’s fast asleep in the car as we head home. We stop to grab a chicken and salad for a lazy dinner (Mark’s shout), which we eat while watching Sorren’s favourite movie, Up.

Daily Total: $0.00

Breaking it down

Jen’s weekly total spend comes to $586.70, on top of her monthly expenses, which equal $2,742. With her monthly total spend of roughly $5,088.80, Jen can take advantage of the Ongoing Annual Fee Offer1, earning her 3 additional bonus Velocity Posts per $1 on her everyday spend in the first 3 months6, (capped at 10,000 Points per month2.) This means that she’s already earned 10,000 points for this month.

Plus, on Eligible Transactions, Jen can earn 0.66 Velocity Points per $1 for her first $1,500 and 0.5 Velocity Points per $1 thereafter3. So, based on this month alone, Jen could be earning 2,784 Velocity Points4 on her every day spend; coming to a total of 12,784 Velocity Points.

If you thought Jen’s week was busy, don’t worry, if she collected 38,352 Velocity Points over three months, she could enjoy some well-deserved “me time” with a return trip to Byron Bay in an Economy Velocity Reward Seat (plus taxes, fees & carrier charges5.) Before you know it, she’ll be working those yoga pants on a beautiful Byron beach with the family in total bliss-mode.

Whether you want to fly to Byron or to the Swiss Alps – the sky’s the limit and the choice is completely yours. You do you. See the kind of Points you’ll be making and the places you’ll be going with our Flyer Credit Card.

Keep in mind; the Ongoing Annual Fee Offer is only available until the 31st of August, 2019.

Check it out!

  • Things you need to know

    1. 20,000 bonus Velocity Points offer is available to new approved Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card (“VAVFC”) account holders who apply by 31 August 2019. 20,000 bonus Velocity Points will be awarded after $3,000 or more is spent on Eligible Transactions within the first 3 months from card approval. Eligible Transaction means any purchase excluding (but not limited to) Cash Advances, Balance Transfers, Special Promotions, BPAY payments, purchases of foreign currency and travellers cheques, transactions made in operating a business, bank fees and charges such as interest and ATM charges and government related transactions. Government related transactions include transactions with government or semi-government entities, or relating to services provided by or in connection with government (for example but not limited to transactions made at Australia Post, payments to the Australian Taxation Office, council rates, motor registries, tolls, parking stations and meters, fares on public transport, fines and court related costs). See Rewards Program for High Flyer and Flyer Cardholders Terms and Conditions for full details and definition. Please note that if you have a balance transfer, you will be charged interest on any spend you make. Points will be credited to the Primary Cardholders Velocity Account up to 60 days after the qualifying purchases. To earn and redeem Velocity Points, there must be an active Velocity Frequent Flyer Membership linked to the VAVFC account. Velocity membership and Points earn and redemption are subject to the Member Terms and Conditions, as amended from time to time. This offer can’t be used in conjunction with other VAVFC promotions or offers. Offer is not available to existing Virgin Money Credit Card holders (including upgrades).

    2. $50 ongoing Annual Fee offer is available for new approved Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card account holders who apply by 31 August 2019. This offer is subject to change at the discretion of Virgin Money, is non transferrable and can’t be used in conjunction with other Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card promotions or offers. Offer is not available to existing Virgin Credit Card holders (including upgrades).

    3. Standard Velocity Point earn rate on the Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card is 0.66 Points per dollar spent on Eligible Transactions on your first $1,500 spend per statement period, then 0.5 Points per dollar spent on Eligible Transactions per statement period thereafter. To earn and redeem Velocity Points, you must be a Velocity Frequent Flyer member. Velocity membership and Points earn and redemption are subject to the Member Terms and Conditions, as amended from time to time. Velocity Points are earned on Eligible Transactions only. Eligible Transaction means any purchase excluding (but not limited to) Cash Advances, Balance Transfers, Special Promotions, BPAY payments, purchases of foreign currency and travellers cheques, transactions made in operating a business, bank fees and charges such as interest and ATM charges and government related transactions. Government related transactions include transactions with government or semi-government entities or relating to services provided by or in connection with government (for example but not limited to transactions made at Australia Post, payments to the Australian Taxation Office, council rates, motor registries, tolls, parking stations and meters, fares on public transport, fines and court related costs). See Rewards Program for High Flyer and Flyer Cardholders Terms and Conditions  for full details and definition.

    4. To earn and redeem Velocity Points, you must be a Velocity Frequent Flyer member. Velocity membership and Points earn and redemption are subject to the Member Terms and Conditions, as amended from time to time. Velocity Points are earned on Eligible Transactions only. Eligible Transaction means any purchase excluding (but not limited to) Cash Advances, Balance Transfers, Special Promotions, BPAY payments, purchases of foreign currency and travellers cheques, transactions made in operating a business, bank fees and charges such as interest and ATM charges and government related transactions. Government related transactions include transactions with government or semi-government entities, or relating to services provided by or in connection with government (for example but not limited to transactions made at Australia Post, payments to the Australian Taxation Office, council rates, motor registries, tolls, parking stations and meters, fares on public transport,  fines and court related costs). See Rewards Program for High Flyer and Flyer Cardholders Terms and Conditions for full details and definition.

    5. The quoted redemption fares are correct as at 19 March 2019 and are subject to change. Fares are subject to availability, and seats are limited and may not be available at peak times or on all flights. Price is based on a one way or return economy Reward Seat fare or business Reward Seat fare as specified, and must be booked on the Velocity website. Taxes, fees and carrier charges are payable in addition to Velocity Points redeemed and are not eligible for Points earn. Price may vary until ticketed. All payments made by debit/credit card are subject to a payment surcharge. For Rewards Seat bookings on: (i) Virgin Australia operated flights; (ii) Delta Air Lines operated and marketed flights between Sydney and Los Angeles; or, (iii) Etihad Airways operated flights, a carrier charge will apply, view more information here. Add $40 or 5,200 Points for international short haul bookings or $70 or 8,800 Points for international long haul booking per person for bookings made on the phone. A checked baggage allowance is included in your fare, view Reward Seat Baggage Allowances for details. Name changes are not permitted. Other changes, refunds and cancellation are permitted prior to travel and may incur a fee and any applicable fare difference. You may also be entitled to a refund under the Australian Consumer Law in certain circumstances. View the Velocity Rewards Seat fare rules for more information. Some flights may be operated by a partner airline. Different baggage allowances and conditions may apply to these flights. Full terms and conditions at Velocity Frequent Flyer.

    6. Offer applies to new approved Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card customers who apply by 31 August 2019. Earn 3 bonus Velocity Points on top of your standard earn rate for each eligible $1 spent per month in the first 3 months from card approval. Points earn capped at 10,000 per month for the first 3 months, after which time standard earn rates apply for remainder of the month. Standard earn rate applies after promotional period. This offer can’t be used in conjunction with other Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card Point promotions or offers. To earn and redeem Velocity Points, you must be a Velocity Frequent Flyer member. Velocity membership and Points earn and redemption are subject to the member Terms and Conditions, available at Velocity Frequent Flyer, as amended from time to time.