Choose FI: Your Blueprint to Financial Independence

Book Review: Choose FI: Your Blueprint to Financial Independence

I don’t normally write book reviews on this blog, but I’m making an exception for the new Choose FI book.  I was expecting my opinion to sway one way with the book but my impression after reading it went in a completely different direction. Chris Mamula is the author of Choose FI: Your Blueprint to Financial Independence (along with coauthors Brad Barrett and Jonathan Mendonsa).  If you’re not familiar with Chris, he retired in 2017 at the young age of 41 (beat me by two years!).  He also spends a lot of time writing at the Can I Retire Yet? site. I met Chris at the FinCon conference in 2017 – such a nice guy!  We didn’t get a chance

Boquete, Panama Places to Live… We Found a Rental!

Boquete, Panama Places to Live… We Found a Rental!

Looking at places to live in Panama is kind of an adventure.  There are a lot of nuances you need to be aware of or you could end up very unhappy. For instance, if you don’t know to ask, you could get a place that has what they lovingly refer to as “suicide showers” here.  And by that, they mean that it doesn’t have hot water! A lot of the local Panamanians here are used to that and that’s just how they live.  But imagine not knowing, moving in, and then jumping into the shower for the first time.  SURPRISE!!!  YIKES! But if you know what to look for, you can find some real gems.  Although costs aren’t as cheap

Guest Appearance on the ChooseFI Podcast

Guest Appearance on the ChooseFI Podcast

I’ve been wanting to be a part of the ChooseFI podcast shortly after it began.  Jonathan and Brad launched the show at the end of 2016 and quickly took the FIRE community by storm! It’s a fantastic podcast helping to discuss the path to financial independence.  They bring on various guests to examine different aspects and strategies of reaching FI. What’s really great though is that they also focus quite a bit on enjoying the journey along the way.  I fell trap to missing that important piece for a little while during our route to retirement. The discussion tends to be very insightful and honest.  Brad and Jonathan are open and talk not just about the positives but also the

Using Google Voice to Stay in Touch While Living Abroad

Using Google Voice to Stay in Touch While Living Abroad

Ever heard of Google Voice?  If not, know that this could be one of the best ways of staying in touch with family and friends while you’re living abroad. One of the small concerns we had was how to keep communication simple with everyone while we’re living in Panama.  When we get there, we’re going to get Panamanian cell service for our phones. The problem is that gives us a Panamanian phone number.  So if we call anyone in the U.S. or they call us, it’s an international call.  That means some potential extra money for each phone call… and we know I don’t like that! Plus, we have to ensure that everyone has our new number, which can also

The Minutiae of Moving to Another Country

The Minutiae of Moving to Another Country

Minutiae.  It’s such a funny word. It makes me chuckle just saying it, so I thought it would be perfect for what I want to talk about today. We’re learning pretty quickly that when you want to move to another country, you can’t just pick up and leave.  There’s a lot of minutiae that will need to be ironed out in the planning. See, wasn’t that was fun to read that word again?  Minutiae. Anyway, I thought I’d take some time today to talk about some of the minutiae we’re starting to think more about lately. Fine, I’ll stop saying the word… for now.  But I do have a funny feeling it’ll find it’s way into this post at some

My First FIRE Presentation on Geoarbitrage

My First FIRE Presentation on Geoarbitrage

Yup, you read that right… I did a FIRE presentation regarding geoarbitrage and our plans to move to Panama. Deanna (aka Ms. Fiology) asked me to do a talk for the ChooseFI local group in Northeast Ohio.  I’m a reasonably outgoing guy, but public speaking is a whole different ball game. I had never done a presentation like this before, but I decided why not push my comfort level and give it a shot?  So I agreed. Although my stipulation was that we keep the FIRE presentation informal, my mind tends to not work that way.  I would have liked to just wing it and simply talk about our story on-the-fly and field questions throughout. Instead, I ended up putting together