Saturday, September 21, 2013

Saturday Mornings...

Photo Credit: Melissa Dunlap from 

Ah, my favorite time. Usually, if I'm not working, you'll find me having brunch with a friend and then heading out to the farmer's market. These early hours are a great time to just relax with a great cup of tea or coffee!

  • Fall is a great time to declutter your home and make it a warm and inviting space not only for the holidays but also the cold weather that will keep you indoors. On Becoming Minimalist, Vincent writes a great post on why people tend to delay this process. 

  • Budgets are Sexy writes about the kitten they found! The bf and I love our pets, but they sure eat up our monthly budget! Giving a home to a stray is wonderful and hopefully he is taken in soon!

  • Mo' Money did a really great article on the Gen Y article that's been going around. If you haven't read it, you really should considering that everyone is affected by the Gen Y's issues. I could probably (and maybe will) write a whole article on how I feel about expectations and realities. 

And a great thanks to 1500 days for the mention!

Have a great rest of your weekend!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Understanding Yourself...

Yesterday, my bf and I had a very interesting discussion in the car. We are both introverts, and readily admit it, and have been discussing ways we can become more extroverted. But the issue we found, is with whome do we wish to spend our time with? We recently joined a club that makes us feel super welcome and is helping to develop both of our speaking and leadership skills.

We had just gone out out to a dinner with various friends and coworkers, and found ourselves chit-chatting about various things in life that had come up. Or, we can say that other couples started sharing stories about their kids...

It's not that we don't fit in, they are his co-workers, so they share a work environment and skills. However, we don't have kids, which means we are out of that loop. One couple had just bought a timeshare for the whole family, which is something we would never do. Another lady enjoyed being decked out in designer duds and driving the latest 4-wheel that can fit everyone including the family dog. They really enjoyed discussing their latest purchases or their future vacations.

The issue is, that's not us. And we discussed deeply the values that we both have and wish to bring and continue in the household. Being that we are minimalists (not extreme) by nature, and enjoy the simple pleasures in life, stuff really isn't a big part of it. Even though we could probably afford some of the things they define as needs, they just aren't anywhere on our radar. By a long shot. It's not that we wouldn't enjoy going out to a monthly dinner with them, it's just that we know the more time we spend with them, the more we might drift into their way of living.

It was definitely an important topic that brought us closer together and gave us a better understanding of ourselves as units and as a couple.We ended up deciding to continue developing the friendships within this club of ours along with finding a club that we have a specific interest in and bringing home that new experience.

Interesting enough, when it came time to pay, we were the only ones with cash. As I had stated previously, I use the envelope system because it works super well with the way I'm paid in my current job, by tips. Everyone else was rifling through their arsenal of credit cards, which made me wonder if they really could afford everything or were they relying on all this stuff to define who they were.

How important is it that you hang around people who are just as thrifty as you are? Do you think people hide behind their stuff more often than not? 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

End of the Year Goals...

As the fall starts to roll in and the last quarter of the year begins to unfurl, I wonder what goals are important to keep in mind these next few months. Especially during the holiday season, it's so important to maintain focus, when the world around us could be falling apart due to all of the "necessary" obligations. Remember, it's not all necessary!

So, I sat down and thought about a few things that I want accomplish these next few months:

BUYING A CAR! So, this is something I've really considered. With this winter predicted to be the worst in years and my lack of ability to generate any body heat, it's almost imperative that I buy a car to get me to and from work on the worst of days. It's a move I'm making after lots of thinking about the positives and negatives (mainly the money drain it will be) but will be beneficial towards keeping me safe and providing me more time to focus on other things in my life. If you remember, my bus trip is about 1 to 1.5 hours on a normal day when by car I could be there in 20 to 30 minutes. It'll cut into some of my reading time, but hopefully it'll open up time for side hustles and sanity.

Continue making extra payments: I've been focusing on making an extra $200 payment each month to help speed up my student loan debt payoff. However, after the back to school blitz, the restaurant is back into dead zone mode. That means I'll definitely have to make sure I'm paying all my important bills first and really setting aside this extra payment. Maybe even scrounging around for loose coins...

Not feel so guilty about everything: It's been a habit of mine to feel guilty about purchasing anything now in days. Take for example before or after work, I'd usually get a snack at the restaurant I work, which after discount, would be under $3. I'd be thinking the whole time, these 3 whole dollars could be going towards my student loans or be a billion dollars after 40 years in a high interest account (not really... but you get the idea) instead of actually enjoying the food. My bf finally forced me to think about how what I was doing to myself wasn't healthy at all and that it's best if I think of it as an investment in my day. After a long shift and at least an hour commute ahead of me, the least I can do is make sure I don't pass out on the bus ride home and have my money stolen. He was right, and even though I have tried packing snacks in my bag, it doesn't do the trick like an actual meal. And that's okay, sometimes your body is worth that small amount. And that's why I have a large snack budget, for these extra snacks that I know I need to have.

What are some of your goals you have for the end of 2013 besides keeping your sanity through the holiday season?

P.S. Sorry for the lack of posts for awhile. I had been working quite a few days in a row, and had been feeling under the weather, but like always, pushed myself to keep going. Found out I had an infection and took some time away to get better! Now that I'm all better, I can focus on the things I enjoy doing!