Tag Archives: new year

Live stress free, financially

As we skate into the new year we contemplate how to make our life better, less stressful, more enjoyable.   Eventually, in my opinion, this all rolls into one word – MONEY.  No matter what changes you make in your life you WILL spend some amount of money.  Unless of course you decide to drop everything, pack your bags, walk away from it all and find a community that works only from trade – if you desire that lifestyle and succeed, good for you!  The rest of us will be over here trying to become less stressed over finances.

I hear over and over that money is the main cause of stress in life.  I do not have all the answers on how to manage money.  I do not know a damn thing about investing or the “market”.  I only know this….. you cannot move forward until you know where you are.

Here are some money managing tips that have worked very well for me over the years…   In random order.

Know your financial responsibilities:  Write EVERYTHING you spend on a sheet of paper.  Go through your bank statement, write down every recurring bill.  Utilities, rent, car pymt, loan payments, credit card payments, insurance, cell phone, daycare, tuition, gym membership, jelly of the month membership, etc.  Write down the minimum payment amount and the due date (this will help you later).  For utilities, jot down the average amount keeping in mind this amount will fluctuate over the seasons.  Total up your grocery spending,  gas station visits, bus fare, Uber fare, etc.  Finally total up your eating out, personal shopping, personal care and anything else you spend on a normal basis.  Compare all these totals to what you bring home in a month’s time.  If you receive tips or commission possibly you can look back to see how your income can fluctuate and make an estimated guess from past history.

Budget: Now that you are aware of your expenses, your financial obligations and what you might be able to live without… create a budget.
Mint.com and DaveRamsey.com have some awesome articles and tips on how to create and stick to a budget.  CHECK THEM OUT!  It’s an eye opener.

Credit cards and Debt:  Do you know what the APR is on your credit card balances and or loans? Some cards can charge over 20%.  I’ll direct you back to Mint.com and DaveRamsey.com to learn more about these charges.  What you read may help you decide that no matter what your balance is, skimming by making the minimum payment each month is a big NO-NO!  With that said, credit cards are not the devil – they can be if their powers are abused, though.   If you are responsible and can pay off your balance each month, they may be rewarding in the long run.

Pay yourself:  SAVE, SAVE, SAVE  Whether its $100 a month or $5 a week, just save something!  Keep track of your savings balance.  As you watch it grow, it might be harder to spend it.  Set a goal like this: “I’d like to save $200 in 6 months….. see if you can do it and adjust from there.

Give yourself a break:  Taking control of your finances is serious “adulting”.  It takes a TON of self control and discipline to keep it in check.  Don’t beat yourself up if you make a mistake – like forgetting to pay the power bill – yikes!  Just be prepared to get back on track as soon as you can.

*The opinions and  recommendation of Mint.com and Dave Ramsey mentioned in this article are 100% uniquely mine.  I have not been compensated in any way and links provided are not affiliate.

Happy New Year!!!

After a 10 day vacation from my desk job I am happy to be back into the swing of things… ie: a schedule!   I don’t flourish well when I’m left to flounder about for more than a few days.  But man, it was nice!!

We had a wonderful holiday vacation and indulged ourselves in family, fun and festivities.


Tyler Family Christmas Eve Lunch 2017

It’s January 3rd and we have already celebrated our oldest child turning 18.   I just can’t believe it.   If you follow my Instagram you will see a picture of him in his JROTC uniform.  He looks so grown up…. so mature, so ready for his adult life to begin. I am SO PROUD OF HIM!!!

Kyle 2017

This year two of our kids will graduate from high school and two are turning 16.  Life just keeps going…. no matter what!

Spring Break 2017 Breckenridge, CO

And now it’s back to our previously scheduled programing…. life, the 9-5, the rat race.
How about this year let’s try to do more than just do more?
Let’s try to do more meaningful, quality vs quantity, whole hearted 100% genuine selflessness.
Create joy in your life by creating joy in someone else’s.

12ish – Days of Christmas – My FAVorite Things!!! Boots and Booties, Oh my!

I’m a little obsessed right now. Every outfit I put on seems to work with my boots and booties. They really have become my go to shoe.

And who can resist a tall black suede boot?

I really prefer a wedge heel but these guys are hanging out in my Favorites List.

Dresses, skirts, leggings, jeans… they just go with everything!

With all the sales at Nordstrom you might pick up one of these pairs for a great price!!!

Only 6 Days left until Christmas!! Eeeek!!

-Ashley XOXO