“When are you guys going to have kids?”
This seems like a common, fairly innocuous question. Except when the couple you level your query at has been trying to have kids without success. Then your friendly question just becomes another shake of salt on the wound. And there’s no good response for the couple to give in this situation, as they probably don’t want to share details of their fertility problems with you. Or perhaps they haven’t decided if they want kids at all, or one partner does and one doesn’t, in which case you’re inviting further tension into the conversation.
A better question: None — don’t ask. If they want to tell you about their plan for producing progeny, they will.
“You don’t get it! He’s not gonna make it….there’s something he clearly does not get. He’s put himself in such a bad position” – yelled one.
Another chipped in, “Well, he’s just being ungrateful. Why would anyone give up the stability of a job and a paycheck for something that’s uncertain?”.
“I think he should just stop this senseless idealism and get back to the grind. Life’s not a bed of roses. The job market is extremely tight right now…”, said the other.
“And what’s with all this financial freedom rubbish? He’s not even close, to begin with.”, said the last one in a condescending undertone.
This blog goes out to those of you that think picking at your calluses while in a social setting it acceptable behavior (which totally is); those of you who proudly participated in the “aerobics era” (and have the thong leotard to prove it) and are still stepping along; those of you who call gym clothes “normal clothes.”
There is something wonderfully addicting about exercise and we do it day after day, year after year. Along the way we’ve all fallen into a fitness funk at some point. If it hasn’t happened to you yet, don’t you worry your little sweat banded head – it will.
Here are 3 common reasons we (myself included) fall into fitness funks, and how to bounce back with renewed excitement.
More important than our practical applications of frugality (say through our $0.39 rice-and-beans lunches) is our shared financial outlook, which guides how we’ve decided to structure our lives. Mr. Frugalwoods and I feel incredibly fortunate that we found each other and evolved together into the frugal weirdos we are today.
Our united approach to money enables us to pursue our goal of quitting our jobs, reaching our version of financial independence, and moving to a homestead in the woods of Vermont in 2017 at age 33. To facilitate this, we’ve attained an aggressive 71% savings rate (not including maxing out both of our 401Ks). I can say with confidence that neither of us would’ve had the discipline or vision to achieve this by ourselves.
So, here we go – a hundred fun ways to spend a money-free weekend. The list below includes the first 45 (with duplicates removed), plus about 60 new ones. If you’re inspired to try your own money-free weekend, hopefully this guide can act as a master list of things to do to make it more enjoyable. (Also, another productive way to spend that time is by working on your own business. Here are 50 small business ideas you could work on during a money-free weekend.)
Please note that everyone’s interests are different – you probably won’t find everything on this list fun and neither will someone else, but the two lists won’t overlap (I can think of countless things other people find fun that I find utterly dreadful). Anyway, here goes!
Insight problems involve thinking outside the box. This is where susceptibility to “distraction” can be of benefit. At off-peak times we are less focused, and may consider a broader range of information. This wider scope gives us access to more alternatives and diverse interpretations, thus fostering innovation and insight. Indeed, [the study] found that participants were more successful in solving insight problems when tested at their non-optimal times.
For example, many people will encourage you to invest in a quality bed and mattress. Healthy sleep is important because it provides the foundation and energy for how we spend our days. This seems like wise advice. Buying a quality bed is an investment into my life.
Additionally, I would argue that healthy food, quality running shoes, and opportunities to learn are also smart investments. They may cost a little bit more, but they improve our quality of life providing valuable returns. Some might include travel on the list—I tend to agree so long as experiencing and learning from new cultures accompanies it.
The concept of N.E.A.T. only works for so long. Just as with expenses, there are only so many cable/cell phone bills to cut, cars to downsize, memberships to cancel, CFLs to screw in, and insurance plans to change. As the easy-to-cut expenses fall away, then you need to start biking more, wrapping your hot water heater, cutting your tax bill, and hanging your wet laundry. Same with weight. As you enter your target weight range, your body will require you to start being more deliberate. The easy weight is gone, so now I’ve started to bike to the park-and-ride instead of drive, force myself to take walks during lunch, eat more healthily, and do some quick and dirty muscle work each day. I feel great and (I think) look pretty fantastic; overall, I feel better each day.
After a while, I started to see rejection and failure as useful, though. In short, I changed my definition of failure. Instead of seeing it as a lack of success, I saw it as a necessary part of success. Did I expect to win anything by not putting myself out there and keeping everything to myself?
It’s spring cleaning time. Even if you have the urge to clean your home from top to bottom, perhaps your natural laziness is keeping you from getting started. No worries, here are ten MacGyver-ish ways to freshen your home with minimal effort.