I’ll be honest. I really take pride in being smart with our money. I am proud of the fact that I save for a rainy day, shop thrifty, invest in our retirement, and pay our bills on time. A big part of being financially responsible involves delaying gratification. It doesn’t mean we don’t ever indulge or give into our vices. It does mean that we are deliberate about the way we spend and the motivation behind our spending. But let’s get real here. Sometimes it just down right sucks to be financially responsible. [Read more...]
The biggest question I got after Just Because You Can, Doesn’t Mean You Should, is what do you do when your family members don’t abide by your commitment to keeping your kids grounded and focused away from the lure of “stuff?” Great question. I think it gets at to an even deeper question. What do you do when your “village” goes rogue and unconsciously (and even scarier, consciously), ignores (or disregards) your parenting philosophy? [Read more...]
I will not have spoiled children. I will not have entitled children. My love? They can have it all. They can have it all and a bag of potato chips. They can have the sky, the moon, the sun, they can have every ounce of my love and devotion. But I’ll be damned if I inadvertently cripple them by lavishing them with stuff. [Read more...]
As much as I love cooking, I sure do love a great meal out. There’s something awesome about being able to grab a bite to eat at your favorite digs, and leave the cooking and the clean up to someone else. Heading out for a bite to eat is as close as this Chica is going to get to a personal chef, so I have to make every meal out count. [Read more...]
Let’s face it. We’ve all gotta eat, and as a parent, my children seem to think that our pantry is a magical cornucopia of deliciousness. La Grande has a taste for the antipasto self-serve area, La Rubia can single-handedly run the QA department at Cheerios, and Homeskillet thinks that he lives in a B&B. [Read more...]
First of all, thank you for sticking with the Budget Scrubdown! Now that we’ve taken our budget snapshot (Part 1, Part 2), now’s the time to start examining each spending category to find ways to trim our expenses to put towards saving and debt reduction. The first area we’re going to take a hard look at is our housing expenses. Housing expenses should account for no more than 30% of your net income or take-home pay. Housing expenses are notoriously hard to trim, mainly due to the fact that we MUST have shelter, and leases and mortgages are relatively inflexible once we sign the dotted line. Regardless, we’re going to give it a good college try and dig deep into our resource bin to see what we can do to save some dough. [Read more...]
How’s the expense tracking going? Even though tracking your expenses seems like a pain, you’ll really find truth in the numbers. There is something really sobering about seeing exactly how much you pay for that uber-fru-fru gourmet java each day, or what it really costs you to eat out during the work week.
Today we’re focusing on the income portion of taking a budget snapshot. A budget snapshot is exactly what it sounds like. We’re going to do our best to look at your numbers exactly as they are right now. [Read more...]
As the summer fun winds down and the new school year gears up, it’s the perfect time to pull your family budget off the shelf, brush of the dust, and give it the ol’ spit polish. Don’t have a budget? Don’t worry. By the end of our Budget Scrubdown Challenge you’ll not only have a budget, you’ll develop a working budget you can really count on, and most importantly, LIVE WITH. Are you giving me the newly viral McKayla Maroney scowl?
And that’s not all, nu-uh! I am going to give away one personal finance book from the For Dummies series compliments of the fabulous publishers, John Wiley & Sons, each week!!!!! You’ll have 8 weeks and 8 chances to win books to help you beef up your financial know-how! [Read more...]
Many of you know I write for an excellent site called New Latina. My latest article explores how money, much like sex, is very much a dirty word in our collective American Culture. There’s a survey link at the bottom of the post, and I’d really appreciate it if you’d complete the survey, por favor with cherries on top? [Read more...]
Did you know your spouse can provide you with your own limited access account for MyPay? Learn about all the features available on MyPay to help military families make the most of their Leave and Earnings Statement (LES). Don’t know how to read an LES? Check out last week’s MMC’s Military Money Matters vlog about how to be an LES pro! Try saying that five times fast…did I ever tell you how much I love alliteration?
Get some Milspouse skills! Learn how to read your servicemember’s LES (Leave and Earnings Statement) in this 5 minute vlog. The more knowledge you have, the more empowered you’ll feel. Learning how to read an LES is the key to understanding military pay, entitlements, and benefits.
You wouldn’t believe what holiday is coming in T-minus 5 months…CHRISTMAS! The consumer driven, debt inducing holiday season that drives us all to forget the true reason for the season. <steps off soapbox>
Even though it’s way too early for me to get in the holiday spirit, it’s not to early for me to start sounding the debt warning alarm. Between all the gift giving, baking, entertaining, card mailing, and general merriment that comes along with decking the halls…it’s very easy to overspend. Here are some tips to keep your holiday merry and your bank account bright. [Read more...]
Yes, another money saving post about babies. It appears that I have babies on the brain, thanks to the multitude of ultrasound and new baby pics showing up all over my facebook newsfeed. Is that only happening to me?
Note to self: hubby needs to see a doc about some scissors…
Babies are expensive. Preparing for those cute little bundles of joy can really put a dent in your bank account. After having two little munchkins of my own, I can honestly say that I’ve got a pretty good handle on what you’ve gotta have on hand and the things you can let slide. My words of advice? Keep it super basic. Don’t worry, you won’t scar your baby and your budget will thank you. Use the money you save to put towards important things…like college savings.