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Lifestyle

3 Reasons I’m Trying to be More of a Minimalist

A few months ago, Kim told you about how she finally came to the realization that she’s always had too many clothes. Like her, I have been realizing more and more lately that not only do I have too many clothes, I just have way too much “stuff” in general. “Stuff” has always been a bit of struggle for me and honestly, I think it’s a struggle for most Americans, even if they don’t always realize it. Last night I was looking for something to watch on Netflix while I ate my supper and relaxed before bed. I’m kind of a closet reality TV junkie, especially when it comes to shows from HGTV. I don’t really like the trashy stuff like “Keeping up with the Kardashians” but now that my secret’s out, I’ll admit that if I have the time (which is rare these days thanks to self-employment) I can sit down and watch an entire season of “Love it or List it” or some other HGTV “reality” show. Of course I know that most of these shows aren’t really 100% reality. I’m not crazy after all. 🙂 But I still enjoy them. I thought I’d exhausted the entire list ...

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Why Higher Income Doesn’t Guarantee Financial Success

achieve financial success

During my three plus years as a personal financial blogger, the majority of interaction with the public has been overwhelmingly positive. However, there are always those who like to throw out how easy it must be for us to pay off debt, save for retirement, accomplish any financial goal because we make decent income. I know you’ve heard it or though it too. If I could just make x amount of dollars, my worries would disappear. In reality, higher income doesn’t guarantee financial success and here’s why. Higher Incomes Often Mean Higher Expenses While it’s possible to live like a broke college student forever, some lifestyle inflation as your income grows is inevitable. I used to happily stay at Motel 6 and eat cheap pasta and red sauce for just about any meal. As a forty something adult, the quality of travel and groceries that are now acceptable are just a couple of things that have gone up in price. I’m not sure if it’s having a higher salary or just being a grown up, but many of the cheap things that used to suffice don’t work anymore. Spending More Than You Make Results in Debt Whether you make minimum ...

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Are the Best Things in Life Really Free?

best things in life really free

As a kid, I often heard my parents say things like the love of money was the root of all evil and that you can’t buy happiness. To an extent, I still believe this, but that belief comes with some conditions. I don’t mean to say that rich people are always happy and poor people are sad, but my question today is how much does money influence happiness and are the best things in life really free? What Are the Best Things in Life? The answer to that question depends on what stage of life you’re in. To my daughter, sleeping late, eating donuts for breakfast, ice skating, and watching cat videos on YouTube would be the best day ever. For some of my 80-year-old plus patients,  being able to get through the day without pain or asking someone for help with basic life skills makes a wonderful life. To me, the best things in life are love and having positive personal relationships, security, and good health. Can those be bought with money or are they really free? Love and Personal Relationships One of the most attractive things about my husband was the fact that we shared many of the ...

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5 Ways to Take Advantage of a Snow Day

how to spend a snow day

Folks in the South and East Coast are still digging out from a monster winter storm, and winter has already unleashed itself on many other parts of the country. Even if you are fortunate to live in an area that doesn’t get snow, there are always weather systems with potential to keep everyone cooped up indoors. Instead of letting cabin fever take over, here are some great ways to take advantage of a snow day. 1.Enjoy Family or Neighbors We’ve had a couple of big storms here in Southwest Colorado this winter. While we don’t usually have CNN reporting our snow totals, weather can still keep us inside, at least for a day or two, sort of. Since Jim started teaching in 2000, we’ve had a handful of snow days. This year we broke a record with two in a row during the first week of the year. If I’d been scheduled, I would have had to go in to work, but somehow everyone ended up at home. We went cross country skiing around the neighborhood, watched movies, and made soup. Being snowed in is great way to reconnect with family. Why do you think so many babies are born ...

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Buying a Dream: My First Lottery Ticket

winning a billion dollars

There are a few things modern society tends to participate in that I’ve never felt the motivation to do myself. I don’t drink coffee, rarely use any type of condiment, and have never waxed anything in my life. Up until two days ago, I’d never purchased a Powerball Lottery Ticket either. However, when the jackpot grew to a billion dollars, I had to jump in. There is basically no statistical chance of winning the lottery, but spending two dollars for chance at a billion is buying a dream. Dreaming is Fun We had so much fun at work on Monday talking about all the ridiculous things we’d do if we won a billion dollars. Everything from buying a private island to standing at the grocery store, handing a million dollars out to random people. As I was leaving for the day, I told them not to expect me back next week if I won but we’d all go for lunch… in Paris. If Money Was No Object More realistically, Jim and I talked about what we would actually do if money was no object. Assuming a miraculous win at Powerball, we’d take a lump sum and after taxes, pocket about ...

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