• Cash register
    Business,  Finances

    Surprise Promotion

    While puttering around at work the other day I received a page to the office. “What’s up?” I asked as I stuck my head in. “Have a seat,” the main managers gestured to a chair positioned between them. When I got up from that chair, I had been promoted to management. I started my training the next day. I must…

  • Washing machine
    Finances

    Upgrading My Life

    Every year I try to invest in at least one thing that will improve my quality of life. In 2017 I invested in a refurbished desktop computer to make writing easier. In 2018 I invested in some shelves, a number of books to educate myself, and a larger monitor so that I could see the screen on my computer better.…

  • Empty Nest,  Finances

    First Month Without Katie

    I just finished paying the first round of bills without the kid sharing half of the expenses. I made it. I even had a bit to spare. I must confess that I was worried so I clamped down drastically on my spending. I’m not quite sure why I was worried (this isn’t my first rodeo, after all), but that old…

  • Finances,  Retirement

    Social Security is Not Enough

    A coworker is being forcefully retired at work. At over 70 years of age, he has worked for my bosses now for 40-plus years. Tears were shining in his eyes as he told me the news. He has one month’s notice before his last day. “But you’ve got Social Security, right?” I asked, casting about for a way to console…

  • Finances

    How to Start Saving Money

    Habits rule our daily lives. From what we do when we first awaken to the last thing we complete as we crawl into bed, we are controlled by habit. Habits allow our brain to take a break from the mundane, to power down for rest, or even to focus on other things. Tweak those habits, and you tweak your life.…

  • Finances,  Food,  Frugality

    Resisting Temptation

    It was early evening. I was on my way home from work, hungry after my shift because I’d not eaten since the day before. The aroma from a local pizza place called to me, enticing me with its flavorful aroma. My nose went on high alert. My stomach started growling. My eyes drifted to the restaurant as I began to…

  • Finances

    Voting Every Day

    Every single penny you spend (or don’t) is a vote that tells the world a little bit about you. Every single penny you spend votes for the world you want to live in and the businesses you support. Do you drive past the stores on Main Street to shop at the Mega-Mart on the outskirts of town? Do you buy…

  • Finances,  Investments

    Patient Experience

    Last year I invested in Corus Entertainment, a Canadian company I stumbled upon when I first began investing in the stock market. I could sense that they were about to make some serious changes to the company; based upon that and a gambler’s hunch I bought in. Sure enough, just as I expected, the company slashed their dividend. However, I…

  • Finances,  Frugality,  Investments

    Potential Paths to Success

    The kid got her permit today. She’s over the moon with the achievement. She intends to acquire her driver’s license, invest in a vehicle, and get a better-paying job. Late last night she discussed her options with me. She asked if I would mind if she lived with me, splitting the expenses until some time in 2020. This would allow…

  • Finances

    Thinking of Long-Term Goals

    Last night I fell asleep thinking about my long-term goals. Eventually I would like to own my own home and perhaps build a small real estate portfolio in order to provide yet another stream of passive income. I’ll have to build my credit if I want to accomplish that. I don’t like credit. Credit makes it far too tempting to…

  • Finances,  Frugality

    10 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Save Money

    In light of how many people I see on a daily basis who refuse to save money, I started asking myself why this was a thing. To me, it makes perfect sense to live beneath my means but in my world I am in the minority. I thought I’d brainstorm to determine if perhaps my path was the wrong one.…

  • Economy,  Finances,  Security

    The Importance of a Financial Buffer

    The United States government shut down the other day. Regardless of your personal beliefs on the issue, one thing that we can all agree on is that the pay suspension for many Federal workers is causing many families to suffer. So many people the world over live from paycheck to paycheck; even a delay in the receipt of their income…

  • budget book
    Finances,  Investments

    Financial Surprise

    As I caught up on the task of logging the money I’ve spent this month I discovered that I’ve done a lot better than I anticipated when it comes to reducing my spending. Even with stocking up this month on pet food and supplies atop of saving some money back for the upcoming book/surplus sale the local library is hosting soon…

  • Finances,  Frugality

    Live Beneath Your Means

    The other day an acquaintance approached me for a loan to pay their overdue water bill. They knew that the bill had been due on the 10th of the previous month; instead of paying it then they decided to do some other things with the funds since their water wouldn’t be shut off until the first of this month and…

  • Finances,  Life

    The Necessity of Facing Reality

    Now that I’ve had time to breathe, it is time to face my current reality. I need to know what I’m facing in order to move forward. Facing our current reality is a necessity. Burying your head in the sand won’t help one bit. You must know exactly where you stand, regardless of how shaky the ground so that you know…

  • Finances,  Frugality,  Happiness

    The Diderot Effect

    The Diderot Effect has been used as a lesson against mindless consumerism since the minimalist movement began. The moral of the lesson is always the same: buying something nice will lead to us buying other nice things until we’re broke and miserable. I was right on board with that thought from the beginning. Why should we strive to buy better…

  • Finances,  Frugality

    Rock Bottom

    I do believe I have now officially hit rock bottom as far as expenses go. With my daughter as my official roommate, she splits half of the household expenses with me. Here is a breakdown: Rent: $250 a month Electric: $50 avg. in summer Water/Sewage/Trash: $39.88 Internet: $30.59 Total: $370.47 My Half: $185.24 As usual, I am not including the amount we spend on…

  • Finances,  Frugality

    Frugality is Not Enough

    As I write this my home looks like there was an explosion in a clothing factory. I’ve spent the past few days washing laundry in my bathtub to save a bit more money this month. It is times like this when I dream of owning a washer and a dryer; it would be absolute heaven not to have to drag…

  • Finances

    Do You Dream of Financial Freedom?

    Imagine waking up whenever you want to, without the need of an alarm clock. You sit up, stretch, and ask yourself: What do I want to do today? This is the life of financial freedom. You don’t have to work; you have enough passive income to cover your needs. Your time is your own. You can rest, learn something new, visit…