At the beginning of 2018, we set ourselves a goal of contributing funds to plant 1,000 trees through the Showcase Forest Releaf Fund.

By November, we’d reached 845 trees, leaving us a little short of our annual goal - rats!

I decided to take a hat around the office - both literally and figuratively - to see if we could scrape together another $1,395 to pay for 155 more trees and meet our 2018 target.

  • Our resident coffee fiend Stefanie offered to cut back by one Nespresso pod a day, for two days of the week. At $0.90 unit over 48 weeks that got the ball rolling with $86.40!
  • Being the diligent funds manager that she is, Rhiana revealed a surplus of $363.68 from our Christmas party budget. Party change straight into the fund!
  • Recently our bank accidentally put $73.33 of Adrian's personal moolah into the Showcase bank account. Sorting that out was going to cost us more money in time and effort than it was worth, I said "Adrian, that sound like a banking error in our favour!".
  • Paul piped up to say he'd recently changed our plan with a log monitoring service saving us $20.21 a month. I said "First gas prices, and now software subscriptions! It's a Christmas miracle!". We added the annual $242.52 saving to the talley.

    Paul also added: "I saved $4.20 by drinking old expired gumboot tea instead of buying new gumboot tea." #savebigtuckey  
  • Our Advisory Board Chairman Mike (with a side-hustle as CEO of an oil company) overheard me publicly espousing the fact that fuel prices are dropping and decided to chip in for five trees ($45) in acknowledgement of my good work.
  • Advisory Board member Jack felt that really he'd done enough for Showcase this year but not wanting to be outdone by Mike he added five trees too. I may have neglected to mention to Jack that the trees are priced in NZD so his $45USD added $64.93.
  • Jessica (just quietly everyone) is pregnant and has had to give up soft cheeses and wine. Not being a company expense and feeling that she'll probably need that cheese and wine budget in about 16 weeks time I felt that I couldn't possibly accept her offer. About this time I also started to think maybe raising $1,395 would be harder than I anticipated...
  • Then Nicky arrived with a kicker: "Let's flog off some of our old testing devices on the black market". Boom! An old Macbook Pro and a cracked Android phone netted us a sweet contribution of $500.

    New Total: $1380.06

As I announced how close we were to hitting our $1395 target Rhiana pointed out that so far, I had made no personal sacrifices to the cause. I put my finger on my chin, muttered hmmmm and looked into the distance thoughtfully.

When I glanced out the corner of my eye to see if she was still waiting I was met with a look of "your legendary frugality won't get past me this time Millie!". I'm sure I heard a mwahahaha. But I digress.

Saving the day, I pulled the last $15 from the depths of my purse and secured our 1000th tree for 2018.

Our friends at Trees that Count have a Christmas campaign to encourage everyone to grow our land, not our landfill and we encourage you to make donations for native trees in the name of your staff, customers, friends and family this Christmas.