I quit my job to move into a tent with my teenage son even though I’d never even been camping – I saved nearly $50,000 and it was so peaceful
- Christine from New York is building a mini cabin to live in the wilderness full time
- READ MORE: We sold our home and took out three children out of school
A savvy woman has managed to save $48,000 over two years by packing up her home comforts, ditching the nine-to-five and pitching up a tent.
In June 2021, Christine Blue, 41, and her son Britton, 14, from New York, packed up their bags and gathered their dogs to embark on an adventure of nomadic living.
Christine first made the move as a fun 90-day camping challenge to spend time with her son over the summer holidays.
She ditched her job as an Uber driver, bought a tent from Walmart and pitched up in the back garden.
But a couple of weeks into the challenge, the 41-year-old mother realized how much money she could save by living in the wilderness, which convinced her to take the new lifestyle on full time. Now, after living in a tent, she is building a mini cabin to make the move permanent.
Christine Blue (pictured), 41, from New York, managed to save $48,000 over two years by packing up her home comforts, ditching the nine-to-five and pitching up a tent
Back in New York City, Christine was racking up bills of $2,500 a month on rent, water, electric, gas, and trash removal in her home.
But after a few weeks in the tent, the mother-of-one decided to change that.
She said: ‘One or two weeks in, it was a lightbulb moment about how much I could save doing this. I even quit my job and focused on a crochet business from the tent instead because I didn’t need the money anymore.’
As Chritine and her son made the change more permanent, they expanded their space by moving into a bell tent at the cost of $1,800 with a solar generator for their power costing $1,500.
Inside the tent there is a wood stove for cooking, cozy blankets and a bed, and the solar generator means Christine has been able to set up her laptop and run her crochet business.
It’s also kitted out with rugs and soft furnishings from Christine’s house, to help make it more homely.
Britton moved between his parents’ homes throughout the week, spending time both in the tent and in his father’s house.
The small investment into a bigger space meant Christine has been able to save $2000 a month she would’ve been spending living in a house.
Inside the tent (pictured), Christine added a wood stove for cooking, cozy blankets, and a comfy bed
The mother-of-one added soft blankets and pillows to make the ball tent a home away from home
Inside the tent there was an impressive wood stove for cooking (pictured), powered by a solar generator
After Christine enjoyed a 90-day camping challenge with her son Britton, she decided to purchase a higher quality tent costing $1800
Christine’s costs of living in a tent
One off cost of the ball tent- $1800
One off cost of the solar generator- $1500
Monthly land lease- $180
Monthly water delivery- $55
Monthly firewood delivery- $75
Supplemental propane during cold weather- $30
Christine’s monthly costs were cut to approximately $340 a month.
The monthly sum included the land lease at $180, water delivery at $55 for 275 gallons for drinking, showers, and cooking, firewood delivery at $75, propane as supplemental heat on colder nights at $30 – with solar power being free.
For Christine, showering was a new experience, using a tank rather than running water – and extreme weather also posed challenges during the winter months.
She said: ‘The biggest difficulty for us was the weather – when the fire would go out at night and the tent walls would get cold again, snow would pile up and I’d have to get up in the middle of the night and get rid of it to stop the tent falling in.
‘Britton was such a trooper; he’d be there in the middle of the night helping me shovel the snow. It was always a team effort with us.
‘We were always close but living like this really gave us a bond that we wouldn’t have without it.
Christine said it was a ‘lightbulb moment’ when she realized how much money she could save by living in the wilderness
Since making the change, Christine ditched her job as an Uber driver and is pursuing an online crotchet business
The mother-of-one is able to cook on her wooden stove- which is powered by sustainable solar energy
Christine now focuses on her crotchet business, as she requires much less money to survive after cutting her bills down
‘Being in the outdoors like that was like a breath of fresh air, I went from being tied down to four walls, not being able to keep up with life and bills to being completely free and at peace.
‘When it came to going to the bathroom, I went outside just like everybody did for thousands of years. We used a bucket and biodegradable bags.’
Christine has now moved into a temporary home in upstate New York while she works on building her new mini cabin in the place she chose to settle in her tent.
She added: ‘I loved living outside and hearing the sounds of nature around me, things like that really helped aid my mental health.
‘Of course, it’s hard, I had to haul the water myself, chop the firewood, make sure everything’s safe – you have no one to rely on but yourself.
Christine has said that since she moved into the wilderness, she has built a strong bond with her son Britton (pictured)
Christine said that the biggest difficulty was the weather – because if the fire went out at night the tent walls would get cold, but her son Britton has been a major help
Christine now gets a monthly water delivery at $55 for 275 gallons for drinking, showers, and cooking
Christine found peace living in a tent, and now she is building a mini cabin to live in the wilderness permanently
The 41-year-old cut her bills down massively from $2,500 to $340 a month, including the heating for her ball tent
‘We started the journey in Illinois, but we were only there for the first three months and then we moved near my parents over winter, just for some peace of mind in case anything ever went wrong.
‘But once the snow cleared, we found a beautiful place to settle in upstate New York – I fell in love with the area.
‘I am not an outdoorsy person; I’ve never gone camping really so this was a huge jump to make.
‘I had zero experience going into this, obviously I did research into what I needed but this was new to me.
‘I decided if I’m going to live with minimal expenses, then I’m going to take advantage of that and focus on growing my online business.
‘I really loved living alone in the woods, I’m an introvert by nature so it never felt lonely, I was just completely peaceful.’
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