Tiny houses and letting dreams evolve

Last weekend I went with Military Dollar to the VA/DC Tiny House Festival, despite being someone who does not want to live in a tiny house. Conceptually they’re super interesting! But they’re not for me. Mainly when I think about tiny houses I start feeling claustrophobic and restless, and I’m not signing myself up for that! Why am I so anti-tiny house? Continue reading “Tiny houses and letting dreams evolve”

Revisiting trade-offs and consciously consuming time

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about the ever-present trade-offs in my life; this latest round of soul-searching was prompted by the fact that I spent multiple days last week too exhausted to do anything. Everyone needs a day off here and there, but half a week spent on the couch? That’s obviously an opportunity to start questioning the choices that led me there (although to be fair I got a lot of reading done!).

I’ll be the first to admit I’m still not great with time management on a day-to-day basis. That’s a constant work in progress. But I’m starting to think that there are two big things I’ve been doing with my time that aren’t necessarily worth it. Curious what they are? Let’s dive right in. Continue reading “Revisiting trade-offs and consciously consuming time”

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”

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)”

Doing hard things, part 2: waiting

Last week I told you all how I’d asked for a raise and a title change for the first time ever in my life. And I also wrote about all the awful things my anxious brain has been thinking about in response. While this is still incredibly uncomfortable, I’m pleased to say that the title of that post is still accurate: nothing horrible has happened (yet)!

I was told it would be at least a week for the high-level conversations to happen, which would mean in theory they would happen by last Friday. I haven’t heard anything back yet about how that went. But I do have more to report.

That first post was about the first conversation I had with HR. The day I wrote it, I had a second conversation with HR. Continue reading “Doing hard things, part 2: waiting”

Doing hard things, part 1: nothing horrible has happened (yet)

Listen, y’all, I’m going to tell you a secret: I have never once in my life asked for or negotiated a raise.

For my first big girl job, I was coming off of two months of unemployment and would’ve (and did) accepted the first thing offered to me with zero questions asked. For my current job, it was such a step up in terms of salary and job description that I didn’t feel it was my place to fight for more, other than the obligatory asking if that was the highest they could go. Plus they told me that they were paying me a bit extra because raises were coming out in a few months, which I’d miss out on, so I’d have to wait until the next year for a raise.

So, okay.  I got a 3% raise last year as a cost of living increase. I didn’t ask for more then, especially because my job was…let’s just say up in the air as a result of the reorganization happening in my department. Not in the sense that I’d be let go eventually, but in that no one knew (or still knows) what my job will ultimately look like.

But a switch flipped for me last week. Continue reading “Doing hard things, part 1: nothing horrible has happened (yet)”

The unconventional (but critical) part of my FI pursuit

I’ve got a trick up my sleeve (literally, actually, but we’ll get into that later) that I’m using to help me on my path to financial independence. It’s unusual in that it’s not a savings app and it’s not a mindset that helps me spend less money. But it’s not a secret: everyone’s heard of it, and a vast majority of women have used it in some form or another for a variety of reasons.[*]

I am, of course, talking about birth control.

While I’m on the yelling about women/political post train, what’s another this week, huh? Buckle up, kids! Or rather, don’t. Because kids—or more specifically a lack of them—is what I want to talk about. Continue reading “The unconventional (but critical) part of my FI pursuit”

Five things I don’t regret spending money on

I spend a lot of time on this blog talking about ways I’m saving money or things I’m no longer spending money on. It’s a function both of being on the FIRE path and also just a fact of life for someone on a non-profit salary. There’s lots of talk in the personal finance community of how to save money, ranging from small things like lattes to the big things like houses and cars.

But saving money isn’t the whole story—sometimes there are times when it makes more sense to spend money than not to spend it.  I’m a broken record when it comes to talking about why I spend so much money each month on my barre membership. But here are five not-so-obvious larger-ticket items I’m glad I’ve spent money on. Continue reading “Five things I don’t regret spending money on”

On not saving money by moving

I forget every year that it’s going to happen, but because of timing, summer becomes a not-great period of the year for me. The three or so months before it’s time to renew my lease always turn into a sustained period of low-grade anxiety about Moving and other such Life Decisions. This is probably more of a big deal than it needs to be, since it seems like in the process of scouring Craigslist to decide where I should live for the next year, I should probably figure out things like what I want to do with my life, or at least what I wouldn’t hate doing from 9-5 five days a week. Continue reading “On not saving money by moving”