How my budget failed me big time

I remember when I was a kid, maybe 15 or 16 years old, I wanted a small telescope to play with because I had an interest in astrophotography.  This telescope was relatively modest, and I spent several weeks saving up my money to buy it.  After all, my parents forced me to have a budget, so I knew exactly how much money I could spend.

Month after month, I continually added money into my budget until, finally, I was in the home stretch.  I was $20 or $30 short, and I happened to mention to my dad my plans for my purchase.

In my head, things were going along as planned.  I wanted to buy something, so I saved until I had the money to buy it.  I worked within the confines of my budget and followed all the rules of proper money management.  At 15, I felt proud of myself for doing so.

I was shocked when I heard my dad’s response. Continue reading “How my budget failed me big time”

The Friday Feast ~ the 26th of June

I love learning. Always have. So when I find a blog or writer that interests me I devour everything I can find. Every day I move countless amazing articles from an array of  frugal, simple living, FI-minded writers into my Amazing Reads folder to be read at my leisure. These articles inspire me and the Mr. to think about things in different ways, to keep open minds and to constantly keep learning so we can be the best possible us.

In this episode of Friday Feast: Retirement Savvy, The Art of Simple, Dividend Mantra, Financial Samurai, and Messy Money.

readingHere are my picks for this week’s Feast. I hope they inspire you to set financial goals and take control over your heart, mind and – yes, your pocketbook.  There is a fire lit within each and every one of us, and the sooner we find that flame, the quicker we can use it for the energy we need to master our own happiness. Continue reading “The Friday Feast ~ the 26th of June”

What version of the “truth” do you believe?

Religion, cars, politics, attitudes and philosophies – from a very early age, I have found myself fascinated by what people believe.  Our world offers many different things to believe in, thought processes, perspectives and rationalizations, and naturally, people presume that the collection of their beliefs can loosely be considered “the truth”.

Question markAs a child, I questioned this apparent madness.  My parents took me to church as a kid – a presbyterian church with a certain interpretation of the Bible and all that comes with the whole idea of Christianity and a belief in God.

I knew others who attended a more strict Baptist church with their own unique interpretation of this religion.  And then, there were Lutherans.  And Protestant Catholics.  Jews.  Arabs.  Buddhists.  Atheists.  The list goes on and on.

Warning, kid logic: If our presbyterian church offered “THE” religion, why are people choosing other options?  Wait…there are options? Continue reading “What version of the “truth” do you believe?”

The Friday Feast ~ the 19th of June

The personal finance community is filled with so many talented writers and truly inspiring people and families who want something much different in life than the traditional plan of buying lots of stuff and retiring in their 60s.  Here is a look at the best of this week’s personal finance blogs.

In this episode of Friday Feast: RetireBy35, Go Curry Cracker, Our Next Life, Reaching Our Balance, Money Mozart, Saimaalife, and FI35. Continue reading “The Friday Feast ~ the 19th of June”

The Friday Feast ~ the 12th of June

I love learning. Always have. So when I find a blog or writer that interests me I devour everything I can find. Every day I move countless amazing articles from an array of  frugal, simple living, FI-minded writers into my Amazing Reads folder to be read at my leisure. These articles inspire me and the Mr. to think about things in different ways, to keep open minds and to constantly keep learning so we can be the best possible us.

In this episode of Friday Feast: Even Steven Money, Enemy of Debt, Reaching Our Balance, Retire by 40, Root of Good, Choosing Voluntary Simplicity, NW Edible, and Money Mozart.

readingHere are my picks for this week’s Feast. I hope they inspire you to set financial goals and take control over your heart, mind and – yes, your pocketbook.  There is a fire lit within each and every one of us, and the sooner we find that flame, the quicker we can use it for the energy we need to master our own happiness. Continue reading “The Friday Feast ~ the 12th of June”

Maybe spending all that money in my 20s was a good thing

With all this talk about early retirement and the hilarious financial mistakes that I made in an earlier life, it is tough to consider the possibility that maybe, just maybe, all that money that I recklessly blew through in my 20s might actually turn into a good thing.

A pile of moneyI have written before about how imperfect I truly am.  Throughout my life, I have made some pretty common financial mistakes that I am literally paying for to this day.  While I never saddled myself with high interest credit card debt, my spending habits were, shall we say, less than frugal.

For example, a year out of college I bought a used Corvette convertible for $25k, which happened to be just under a half year’s salary at the time.  Just months out of college and BOOM, I had already blown through nearly half of my salary. Continue reading “Maybe spending all that money in my 20s was a good thing”

I’m proud to be an early bird!

I have often heard, “Damnit Steve, quit living like you’re old”.

I will admit it – I keep a schedule that is much more typical of someone who is, shall we say, “advanced” in the years department.  I am the kind of person whose body clock is well-honed to the patterns of the sun, and I’ve never really fought against that pattern.

Even as a child, my parents admitted to me one day that I never really had a bed time because they knew that I’d go to bed on my own once I felt tired.  They had always set an arbitrary “bed time” of 10pm, but I was in bed a little after 9pm most nights.  Contrary to how my brother operated, I never forced myself to stay up simply because it wasn’t my predetermined bed time. Continue reading “I’m proud to be an early bird!”