Frugality

Sixteen Strategies for a Frugal and Wonderful Christmas

Like it or not, Christmas is less than six weeks away. If your family is anything like our family, the weeks around Christmas are jam-packed with events with friends and extended family members, wrapping and exchanging and opening gifts, preparing and eating meals, and generally fighting off the winter blues with a huge dose of …

Categories: Frugality

Saving Money in Your Startup — Part 5

Have you ever written a check and paused for a moment to mentally check your bank account to make sure there were sufficient funds in the account for the check to clear? I have, and I’m guessing you have too. Keeping accurate accounting records is important — especially for your business. Accounting provides you and your …

Betterment Review

As I explained last week, I’m on a quest to find the best retirement plan to roll over my old 401(k). I’m going to conduct the most thorough research I can — publicly — and then put my money where my mouth is, literally rolling over my old 401(k), worth approximately $85,000, into the best …

Wine, Blind Taste Tests, and Your Money

You’re standing at the grocery store looking at a large selection of wines. You know you want a red wine to go well with your pasta meal this evening. One is $5.99 per bottle. Another is $19.99 per bottle and has a little tag bragging about the score it received in some wine magazine. Which …

How and Why to Use a Zero-Sum Budget

Sometime around 2010, my husband and I realized that we weren’t making the most of our income. We knew we were wasting boatloads of money, yet we weren’t sure why it was happening or how to make it stop. In an effort to figure things out once and for all, we began tracking our spending to see where all of …

14 Simple Life Hacks That Have Each Saved Me $100 (Or More) Since My Financial Turnaround

As many of you know, I’m constantly trying out little lifestyle changes and tweaks just to see if they’re something that actually saves money and if they’re something that integrates well into my life. I’ll usually try out these tactics for a while and then do my best to assess whether or not it’s actually …

Categories: Frugality

Give Your Entire Home a Makeover for Under $500

You pull into your driveway, glance at the yard, and a wave of disgust sweeps over you. The yard is a mess and you can’t stand to look at it another day. And that’s just the beginning. A tap of the garage clicker reveals a cluttered chasm of chaos, and quickly reminds you why you’re forced to …

A Frugal Guide to Amateur Astronomy

Several months ago, I had a wonderful evening with my six year old daughter where we spent more than an hour (up until bedtime) in the backyard under the night sky, looking up at the stars. We talked about how big the universe is. We talked about how most of the dots in the sky …

Categories: Family, Frugality

Saving Money in Your Startup — Part 3

If you’ve been following along with this series, you’ve already thought about where to locate your business, the cost of living in your city, where to set up your home office or workplace, how expensive coffee shops are, how to legally set up your business entity, the business model canvas and lean startup methodologies, DIY …

Our Family’s Eight Favorite Slow Cooker Recipes

Two to three nights a week, our family has a dinner that’s served directly out of a slow cooker. It’s something that either Sarah or I assembled in the morning before the daily rush began and it’s ready to eat when our family is gathered for dinner. This has a bunch of advantages. One, it …

Categories: Frugality, Meals

The Ultimate Guide to Getting Free Kid’s Clothes

In 2009, I had my first child, a girl I named Lydia Rose. She was beautiful and dainty just like a baby doll, and I loved dressing her up in cute little outfits and taking all kinds of pictures. Unfortunately, those first few years turned out to be expensive. Since I wasn’t all that frugal …

Saving Money in Your Startup — Part 2

So you’re thinking about starting a business. Congrats! Now what? Odds are good that if you’re starting a business, you’re a “solopreneur” — meaning it’s just you, and you’ve got some questions about what to do next. Whether it’s your first startup or you’ve been down this path before, identifying and accessing key resources — both …

Some Thoughts on Extreme Cheapskates

Extreme Cheapskates is a “reality” television series that airs on TLC that just entered its third season. Over the last two years, the show has launched a new season in October and, as with the previous two Octobers, I’ve been asked a few questions about my take on the show. First of all, I’m not …

Hacking Six Normal Life Routines to Save Time and Money

In my experience, many of the truly useful frugal tactics come about from little tweaks to one’s daily routine. If you can look at something that you do almost every day and find some little way to shave a minute off of it, you’ve saved more than six hours over the course of a year. …

Saving Money in Your Startup

We get it. You’re starting a new businesses and you’re strapped for cash. There are a million questions going through your head. We empathize with bootstrapping entrepreneurs and small-business owners everywhere, and today we explore meaningful ways (that add up) where your business can save money in the early phases. That said, every small-business owner …

Hobbies on the Path to Financial Independence

Let me start off by describing several hobbies I’ve enjoyed over the years. It’s not a secret that I’m an avid reader. Once upon a time, I had a large collection of books that I’d purchased in various places. Some of them were cheap as they were bought at secondhand stores or acquired via Paperbackswap. …

Fifteen Things I Skimp On

A couple of days ago, I posted a list of fifteen items I don’t skimp on. That list mostly consisted of extremely heavy use items and maintenance of my health and my most expensive purchases (homes and automobiles). So, what do I skimp on? In truth, I skimp on a lot of things… but they’re …

Categories: Frugality

Fifteen Items I Don’t Skimp On

Frugality is a major part of our financial independence strategy. Since we live on only one income and save the other one, we have to be quite careful with our spending. As I’ve mentioned many times, my perspective on frugality is to spend as little as possible on things that aren’t as important to us …

Categories: Frugality

Nine Strategies for Stretching Out a Tiny Food Budget

We’ve all faced it at some point in our life. Your next paycheck isn’t due to arrive for a week or so. You don’t have much in your checking account and there’s not too much in the cupboards, either. You need to put food on the table for the next week but you have only …