Archive for October, 2007

To Whomever Stole My Debit Card


To: Whomever Stole My Debit Card:

I am not sure who you are, but I thought I would take a minute to write to you and let you know the negative impact you had on my life over the weekend.

Sometime after I visited Walgreens on Thursday, you found my debit card and obviously decided to take the opportunity to use it, not just once, not just twice, but at least 10 different times before I realized it was missing.

The Friday Gathering For 10/26/2007


It is Friday again all already and time for my weekly Friday Gathering. Before I give you the links to my favorite posts this week, I have a couple of announcements:

5 Personal Finance Lessons From The Pursuit of Happyness


1 Timothy 6:10 – “The love of money is at the root of all kinds of evil”

We don’t frequently watch movies. In our effort to cut back on expenses and be more frugal we pretty much eliminated renting from our budget. While visiting with my wife’s parents last weekend, they highly recommended The Pursuit of Happiness.

Given we hadn’t rented a movie in forever, we decided to give it a try. Turns out, it lived up to it’s promise and then some. It’s an outstanding movie that contains a number of important life and financial lessons. Here’s just a few that really stuck with me:

What is Frugality and Are We Frugal?

Mason jar filled with coins

In a comment made to my recent article A Guideline Budget – How Do You Compare? a reader stated that I am not frugal. I agree, We’re not frugal, or at least I don’t consider us frugal. We are on a quest to be more frugal, but we’re not there yet. But then I began to wonder, how will we know when we get there? What is frugal exactly and what defines one as being frugal vs. not being frugal? I then began to wonder, do we really want to be frugal? Hmmmm…

Fact or Fiction: Mortgage free in 1/2 the time?

merge sign

While at football practice, one of the parents passed out a flier for their business. Being an entrepreneur and Guerrilla Marketing fan myself I gave it a read. The pamphlet read:

Money Saving Monday Tip #14 – Save Money When Eating Out

 Table at a Restaurant

In a recent article I compared our budget to a guideline budget from The World’s Easiest Guide To Finances. One of the areas I identified as a problem for us was eating out too much. My wife and I spent some time over the weekend talking about this, and decided to reduce the amount of times we do eat out and to also try to reduce our cost when we do go. Here’s a few tips I’ve come up with to reduce your eating out costs:

The Friday Gathering for 10/19/2007



Last week I had to skip my weekly Friday Gathering post due to me breaking my wrist. Well, I’m still the “one handed blogger” but getting faster at typing each day, and my wrist is healing up and feeling better. Thanks to all of you who wrote me offering your thoughts and prayers, they are sincerely appreciated. It’s wonderful to have such great, supportive friends!

Just a few quick news items:

  • In M-Network news, Financial Dominance and Savings Explained are no longer part of the network. My Two Dollars has joined and is an awesome addition to the network! Welcome David!

The Friday Gathering – Coming Soon

For those of you that might be wondering about the extra big Friday Gathering I promised…Well, it’s in process and will be up this evening. I had some unexpected issues at the “real job” today that I hadn’t planned for, and behind on getting it formatted and posted.

I promise though, I haven’t forgotten!

A Guideline Budget – How Do You Compare?

Budget Balance

I am currently reading The World’s Easiest Guide To Finances. So far, it’s a good read especially for those that really have no idea where to start. But there is also some great ideas and perspectives for the more “seasoned” personal finance gurus. One of the more interesting items in the book is a guideline budget that is proposed by the authors. I’ll first present the guideline budget and then provide my perspective on it.

The Guideline Budget

The guideline budget basically breaks your expenses into 12 categories and provides a suggested percentage of your income to be allocated to the category. Here is the guideline budget from the book:

Why I Blog

Valley Mountain View

Inspired by a post from PaidTwice, I thought I might share my motivations for blogging. Most of this information is also available on my About page, but in a more abbreviated format.

In November of last year (2006), my family and I were impacted by a earth shattering personal circumstance. I was out of work for an extended period of time, we were faced with getting behind on our debt payments and beginning to wonder how we were going to put food on the table. We ended up selling a number of our personal possessions to a pawn shop just to make ends meet. It was the most scary time of our lives. Our faith was truly tested.