A big part of this whole picture is realizing that the things that I want – and the things that I want to do – are borne out of a mix of desires that I have at any given time.

I love spending time with my family.

I love wandering around in parks and exploring the woods and camping (though, admittedly, I’m not too big on long hikes).

I love activities that make me think, whether it’s reading a challenging book or playing a board game.

via The $64,000 Question – The Simple Dollar.

We love our little neighborhood. One of the things we enjoy most are little get-togethers with neighbors on our street. Almost every week, we’ll have a planned or spontaneous gathering were we’ll sit around and chat for a while. The kids ride bikes or draw pictures with chalk on the driveway. In the summer, we watch movies in a backyard with a projector and a bed sheet.

A couple weeks ago, some of the ladies in the neighborhood got together. Mrs. 1500 couldn’t make it due to a previous obligation. At some point in the gathering, the ladies started talking about each others’ husbands. It eventually got back to us that one of the ladies said this:

via Thursday Rant: Why my neighbor would never marry me – 1500 Days to Freedom1500 Days to Freedom.

“Don’t start your day with the news,” Mark said. That will send you down a rabbit hole of misery and frustration. It conjures up the wrong emotions for productivity. “The best way to start a perfect day is to attack something that is problematic, something that you are struggling with or that you want to go after. It must be important. Chances are you’ll want to put it off, but those items are the ones that you must attack.”

via The Perfect Morning Schedule for an Employee – Early To Rise.

The number one benefit of rucking is aerobic conditioning. Engaging your body in activities that keep your heart rate at an elevated but moderate rate for an extended period of time improves your aerobic base through adaptations seen at the cellular level. These improvements can only be accomplished by moving at a low intensity for a sustained duration. Perform a search for “mitochondria health”, “metabolic flexibility”, “aerobic base”, and “long-slow distance exercise”. There is plenty of material conveniently available elsewhere on this subject and it is too lengthy for this article. As opposed to jogging, swimming, biking, or rowing, rucking is easy on the joints, places you in a very strong and correct posture, and doesn’t compel the user to “go glycolytic” (using primarily glucose metabolism by training too intensely), as you are already moving at the top speed of your walking gait. You could of course, load too heavy, find an uphill route, etc., to increase the intensity but you won’t get that feeling of needing to move faster for more conditioning once underway, as the “high” of the exercise-induced endorphins washes over you.

via How to Ruck | StrongFirst.

The kettlebell swing is the Russian army knife of exercises. What else do you call an exercise that can increase both a professional powerlifter’s strength and an elite marathoner’s endurance?

The swing zaps fat without the dishonor of aerobics, and it develops explosive power and never-quit conditioning. Since I introduced the kettlebell to the West a decade and a half ago, the swing has become a staple in the training of elite fighters and athletes, and has spurred a number of scientific studies that have documented its benefits.

via Strength, Power, Conditioning: How to Master the Kettlebell Swing | The Art of Manliness.

Many of the meals that my family truly enjoys are made out of just a few ingredients.

My family loves spaghetti night. I just boil up a box of spaghetti noodles and, for a sauce, mix together one can of tomato sauce, a few dashes Italian herbs from the pantry, and either an additional can of diced tomatoes or some diced tomatoes from our own garden. Everyone seems to love it.

I’ll make tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches from literally four ingredients combined. I’ll put a big handful of diced tomatoes in a blender along with a quarter cup of heavy cream and blend it, then heat it up. Meanwhile, I’ll put some cheese between two slices of bread and cook that on a sandwich press. Four ingredients for a solid weekend lunch.

via Some Thoughts About Living on $29 a Week for Food – The Simple Dollar.

If you have read personal finance blogs for any amount of time, you know that Vanguard is a great choice. Actively managed funds have a very difficult time beating their low fee, index counterparts that were popularized by Vanguard. Furthermore, the choice of a Vanguard fund is simple as well; the total market fund or VTI (ETF version of VTSAX) is the way to go. Mr. Collins does a nice job of explaining it all, so I’ll leave that to him.

via What I did with my $275,000 401(k) rollover – 1500 Days to Freedom1500 Days to Freedom.

The average American household earns $63,784 before taxes, which amounts to bringing home $51,100.

From that amount, they spend $9,004 on transportation, $6,602 on food (of which $2,625 is spent at restaurants and $3,977 is spent on food eaten at home), $5,528 on insurance and pensions, $1,604 on clothes, $2,482 on entertainment, $17,148 on housing, $3,631 on health care, $1,834 on cash contributions (donations and legally required spousal and child support), and $3,267 on other expenditures.

The average household in this picture consists of 2.5 people, of which 1.3 are earning an income. An average household owns 1.9 vehicles and 63.7% are homeowners.

via A Look at the Average American Budget – and How the Average American Can Start Saving More – The Simple Dollar.

Taking control of your finances can help you reach your dream life in many ways.

By paying off your debt, making more money, not living paycheck to paycheck, budgeting better, and more, you may feel more free to reach for your dream life because you most likely won’t feel as tied down to your finances.

You will feel more free to take risks when your finances are in control and it can really mean a world of difference.

via How To Change Your Life And Live Your Dream Today – Making Sense Of Cents.

Another way this works is to find at least one thing about that coworker you do like and focus on that rather than the traits that annoy you. Maybe they’re into dogs and you can brag about your pooch to them, or they enjoy craft beer like you do so you can talk about your favorite local watering hole. Find ways to center your conversation on these topics, and perhaps what you disliked about that person will be lessened.

via How to Deal With Bad Coworkers | The Art of Manliness.

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