I Just Spent $35 on a Sleeping Pad and Feel Guilty as Shit

I Just Spent $35 on a Sleeping Pad and Feel Guilty as Shit

Well, Amazon Prime Day happened.  I told my wife to stay away from Amazon for the day and not to get sucked in.  I warned her about it.  Unfortunately, nobody warned me and somehow I ended up in the vortex and bought a $35 sleeping pad before the day was over. I debated it while it sat in my cart and the 15-minute countdown clock was ticking away.  I even deleted it out of my cart and re-added it just to restart the clock. I contemplated this for 29 minutes and 56 seconds before I pulled the trigger and made the purchase. Then I just stared at my screen and felt guilty.  In fact, I felt guilty about it for

It Doesn’t Matter, So Stop It!

It Doesn’t Matter, So Stop It!

In general, we seem to have a tendency to focus a lot of our time and money on the things that don’t really matter.  It’s time to stop it and instead concentrate on what does matter… So far this summer we’ve taken a fantastic trip to Panama and spent a few days at a cottage on Kelleys Island on Lake Erie.  We’re starting to pack for a week-long vacation trip to Tennessee we have coming up in the next couple of weeks. I’m also going on a backpacking weekend in the Allegheny National Forest in Pennsylvania in September.  And, of course, I’m more than excited about my first trip to FinCon in Dallas in October.  In the meantime, we’re trying

Why Do We Buy Crap??

Why Do We Buy Crap??

Sometimes I can’t help but shake my head that we as a society feel compelled to buy crap just because we feel we “need” it. There are millions of people here in the U.S. that, although not by choice, manage to live on $2 a day.  But when it comes to the middle class, even with increasing salaries, most families buy and buy and still feel like they need more stuff. Why? Why do people love to waste their hard-earned money on crap? I’m not above this, but I think I’ve changed tremendously over the past decade.  I’ve really become much better at just living more simply. When I was working during my college years, I was a spender.  I’ve talked about how I

Why I Ended My Costco Membership

Why I Ended My Costco Membership

Once upon a time, there was a guy who wanted to save money and heard that buying in bulk would help him with that.  So he bought a Costco membership to reach that goal. It was glorious!  He saved a ton of money, enjoyed loads of free samples, and took advantage of all the amenities it had to offer. There were unicorns, pixies, pots of gold, and all sorts of other wonderful things that don’t really exist anywhere but here. All this happiness was thanks to his Costco membership… thanks, Costco!! The End   Ok, maybe this wasn’t the most accurate fairy tale, but there are a lot of loyal members who might build their experiences up to be pretty close this story. I’m not

Year-End Review

Year-End Review

Well, this is it – the last post of the year.  I hope all of you had a great holiday and are looking forward to the new year!  I thought this would be a good time to do a year-end review and look back at what I got accomplished throughout the year (and what I didn’t!). Let’s start with the 8 Financial Goals we had set at the beginning of the year for ourselves… 1) Build back up our online savings After the 25% we put down on the duplex we bought at the end of last year, our savings we had was pretty much depleted.  We don’t have any consumer debt, so other than contributing to investments, paying regular bills

The Line Between Frugality and Deprivation

The Line Between Frugality and Deprivation

The Line Between Frugality and Deprivation A lot of people on the quest for financial independence aim to trim their expenses.  This works great… until it doesn’t.  Sometimes the line between frugality and deprivation becomes blurred.  It’s possible to cut your expenses too much where you can make yourself miserable. I was listening to a great podcast that the Mad Fientist put together from a Q&A at Camp Mustache which had Pete aka Mr. Money Mustache, Paula Pant from Afford Anything, Doug Nordman from The Military Guide, and, of course, Brandon the Mad Fientist. An interesting topic was discussed regarding that line between frugality and deprivation that I thought would be worth discussing.  The subject of motivation in relation to the quest for financial independence came up and