Turkish red lentil soup

It’s been a WordPress-heavy week for me: I’ve spent most of the last three days at work doing various things on the work blog, and tomorrow’s going to be another day spent editing posts and uploading photos. Add to that Monday night spent writing and all of the administrative blog things I need to do (I’m super behind on responding to comments 😅), plus this post, and it was getting to be a lot.

I wanted to do something a little different and shorter than normal. So enter my first recipe! Continue reading “Turkish red lentil soup”

Doing hard things, part 3: the plot thickens

In case you missed it, I asked for a raise and a title change in January.

When I left off with part two of the Job Saga over a month ago, I’d been doing a lot of waiting to hear back about my raise/title change request. While I’m still largely in waiting purgatory, things have certainly happened since then.

I hadn’t yet applied for the internal position when I wrote that post, but I changed that a few days later. And was granted an interview. Continue reading “Doing hard things, part 3: the plot thickens”

No one else cares about your money: a #WomenRockMoney post

This post is part of the #WomenRockMoney Movement, a group of female personal finance bloggers who have come together to inspire more women to own their finances. Thanks to Chelsea for putting together this collaboration and the amazing homepage for the movement!

Happy International Women’s Day, everyone! If for some reason you’ve missed the fact that I’m a huge feminist and am therefore all about this day (and month) of celebration of women, well…surprise! When Chelsea at Mama Fish Saves asked who wanted to be part of this collaboration, I couldn’t sign up fast enough. She asked us to write a post about our most important piece of money advice for women, and I didn’t want to add to the multitudes of how-to posts about fundamentals like the basics of budgeting (especially since I don’t budget… 🤷‍♀️).

While I was thinking, I realized there was an incredibly essential thing that I wish I’d known earlier: no one else cares about your money. You are the only one who does.

That sounds disingenuous, especially from someone who blogs about her money and certainly appreciates when people read what she writes. But let me explain. Continue reading “No one else cares about your money: a #WomenRockMoney post”

February 2018: birthday month edition

February was a bunch of working extra and two weekends spent out of town; one to see my parents, and the weekend closest to my birthday in LA. I’m now 26 so I guess that makes me Officially Old and Done With the Quarter-Life Crisis or something. Just kidding, the quarter-life crisis will for sure continue, probably on multiple fronts! Boy am I glad I figured out the financial aspect and am working on the FIRE thing so I at least know that what I want to be when I grow up includes not being tied to a 9-5!

General sarcasm at myself/my ongoing “what do I want to do in life?” emergency soul-searching aside, turns out there’s not much new to report since I wrote about much of it as it happened. So if you missed all that because for some unfathomable reason you haven’t been religiously keeping up with my posts, go read them (whoops, sorry, the sarcasm continues)! And PS I’ve now got a handy archives page so you can go catch up on everything 😉 Continue reading “February 2018: birthday month edition”

Coming to terms with a year’s worth of spending

Tracking your spending is one of the most basic things you need to do when on the FI path. December 2016 is the first month I actually kept track of everything I spent, which means I have data for the entire year of 2017.

I have to admit, for months now I’ve been thinking about totaling up everything from 2017, but I’ve also been avoiding it. While I moved to spending more intentionally overall during the year, I know for a fact there was a lot of waste, and I was scared to see what I’d find. But for the sake of better knowing my finances, I sucked it up and took a peek at the numbers. Continue reading “Coming to terms with a year’s worth of spending”

Looking ahead to debt-free life

It’s happened, friends. The credit card debt is GONE. I don’t yet have a zero balance screenshot for posterity but it’s going to happen. Soon. Yes, I am side-eyeing all of my various financial institutions collectively because I see them making sure charges get posted to my credit cards way sooner than it takes for my payments to get sent over.

Anyway. The fact remains that IT’S GONE! 🎉

ETA: I spoke too soon!

I’m not completely debt-free yet, but all of a sudden that day seems so much closer. After the extra $350 I just sent over to my student loans last week, I’m sitting on about $800 left on those. Continue reading “Looking ahead to debt-free life”

Life update: job, taxes, and debt (payoff)

Hey, y’all. As you might’ve noticed, I didn’t post on Tuesday. I was in LA enjoying quite a lovely birthday weekend trip and was too busy spending Monday evening at the beach in Malibu to write. Ditto for the previous nights on being too busy. I brought my laptop with me to LA on the off-chance that I’d find some time to write (or spend time on the plane doing so). Nope. Didn’t open it even once, and you know what? That’s fine. That’s called having a life and enjoying my vacation, which was my first visit to California and my second visit to the West Coast. Continue reading “Life update: job, taxes, and debt (payoff)”

Financial lessons from Les Misérables

I drove home two weekends ago and, as often happens when I’m there, my mother and I had a culture weekend.

I love musicals and I love ballets (and I did plenty of both in years gone by[*]), but, as odd as it sounds to say this, honestly I could afford to see so many more shows back when student tickets were an option. It’s just a fact of life that buying tickets to the Kennedy Center doesn’t fit in my budget at the moment. But since my mother and I both love them, she’ll usually buy a ballet or musical (or sometimes both) ticket to bribe me to come home as inducement for some mother-daughter bonding time.

This time, as an early birthday present to me, we saw the Carolina Ballet perform Romeo and Juliet and then saw Les Misérables that evening.

I’ve seen both shows before (Les Mis is one of those that gets me every time), so I could better appreciate that essentially the theme of the day was “love at first sight” followed by “everyone dies.” It was dramatic, to say the least.

Obviously the ballet had no words, so even if I could pull some brilliant personal finance-related things out of a tale of two very young star-crossed lovers, they would be hard to narrate, given that ballet is a visual art. (Yes, of course I’ve read and seen the play. I’m still not dissecting Romeo and Juliet.)

Communicate with your partner might be one—and one that has financial implications for those of you who are partnered up. Honestly there would be no need for the entire story if they could just text each other:

“hey so imma appear dead when u see me but don’t worry it’s only fake so I can get out of marrying that totally lame other dude my parents want to hook me up with UGH lol”
“ok cool lol then i def won’t bring the poison that’ll come in handy when i think ur for REAL dead hahaha love u see u in the crypt!”

BUT ANYWAY. It’s hard to write a post about a ballet, but a musical? That’s a whole ‘nother ballgame.[**] Especially because almost two weeks later and I’ve still got Les Mis songs in my head on constant repeat.

It all started with that fateful song, “I Dreamed a Dream.” Continue reading “Financial lessons from Les Misérables”

January 2018: uber frugal month?

So I started off 2018 with the goal of doing an Uber Frugal Month challenge (among other goals, with varying degrees of success) for January. And then I broke that with a car repair and a plane ticket to LA over my birthday weekend.

Yet again, here’s where emergency funds are amazing: I didn’t break (much of) a sweat swiping my credit card for either of those transactions (and to be fair, the plane ticket was decidedly not an emergency. That came out of my Tip Yourself savings which is not earmarked for emergencies). Those pushed my spending up much higher this month, but I was not worried about covering them.

I’m leaving for LA next week and I cannot contain my excitement. That $370 is already well-spent and I’m not even there yet! Continue reading “January 2018: uber frugal month?”