5 Tips to Celebrate Christmas on a Shoestring Budget

 

Winter movies

Christmas is a little less than 7 weeks away. It shows up on the same day every single year but I’m sure I’m not the only one who has ever (always) found themselves a little unprepared for the extra expenses that comes with the holiday. Here are 5 tips for keeping your Christmas holiday in check.

Figure Out Your Budget

If you’re running low on funds then this step is especially crucial. Set your dollar limit and then create your list of people that you need to buy for and make that list fit into your budget. Don’t be tempted to increase your budget figuring you will play catch up in January…that never works!! Continue reading

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How To Pick the Perfect Part-Time Job

 

I currently work two jobs and have done so for almost two years now.

The decision to work two jobs was primarily due to the fact that we lost nearly $1,900 a month over a two year period.  I am grateful for the Social Security payments we received over the years after my husband died, but certainly wish the benefits could have continued through their college years. Living expenses don’t stop if the kids go on to college.

Our financial situation is certainly not uncommon in today’s times though and it’s not limited to only single-parent homes. I don’t know too many people that could easily survive on one income in today’s environment. One solution to ease the financial burden, regardless of whether you’re a single parent or a dual-income family struggling to meet your financial responsibilities, is to find a part-time job. Continue reading

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Life Insurance and The Day My World Collapsed

 

Insurance-it’s a crazy thing. It’s the one thing you pay for and pray that you don’t have to use. Auto insurance protects our cars, home insurance our houses, health insurance our health and wellness…and then there’s life insurance. This is arguably the most important insurance of all because it doesn’t protect our health or possessions but our families and our legacy. Continue reading

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September Update and Let’s Try This Again

I let my habit of setting monthly goals slip for quite a few months until I realized I was feeling uninspired in life. I felt a bit adrift and didn’t like it so I decided to start back up with setting goals for myself again in September. It was a rough start back but that just means there’s a lot of room for improvement in October. So how did I do? Continue reading

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6 Things My Kids Pay

Personal finance is called that for a very good reason. It’s personal. What works for me might not work for you and vice-versa. Someone reading this might be a dual-income, no kids family (DINK), or you might be like me and running a single mom/dad household, or maybe you have dual income with kids. All of these various living situations will result in very different budgets.

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September 2018 Goals

As promised, here’s everything I’m going to accomplish this month. Help keep me accountable please!! I’m not sure who said this first but it’s one of my favorite quotes:

Don’t think about what can happen in a month. Don’t think about what can happen in a year. Just focus on the 24 hours in front of you and do what you can to get closer to where you want to be. Continue reading

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5 Tips For Setting Monthly Goals

 

Okay, you all know I’m a big planner and if you’ve been following my little blog for any time at all then you know I used to always (okay, maybe always is a strong word but mostly) posted my monthly goals at the beginning of each month. I posted my annual New Year’s resolutions this year but I haven’t actually posted my monthly goals since last December. I’d made a decision in March of this year to take my blog and writing more seriously and I think either consciously or sub-consciously I thought I should stop with the monthly goal posts since no one was going to be interested in those.

Well, you may still not be interested, and if so, feel free to skip that day’s post (don’t worry…thousands of people skip ALL my posts so I won’t be offended) but I’m going to start the monthly goals back up starting in September. I’ve discovered I’m the type of person that needs accountability to push myself to achieve my goals and dreams. So today I’m going to go over 5 tips I have for setting goals. Continue reading

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Simple Comforts

There’s too much going on in my life right now between busy times at work and kids coming and going between out-of-state summer jobs and returning to school for the fall semester and struggling to find the time and energy to work on my writing. It’s caused a bit of writer’s block, which further adds to my stress. I decided to take a step back and think about my favorite simple comforts/routines that center me when life gets to be too much.

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Dealing With Life’s Curveballs

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans…John Lennon”

This is a favorite quote of mine and boy has it proven to be true this summer. I had some really grand plans this summer and let’s just say they have not materialized. My oldest son was going to be working out of state and my youngest son was going to be home but working multiple jobs over his summer break so I was ready to make this the summer of Holly. I was going to pump out two fabulous blog posts a week and work on getting some freelance writing gigs and life was going to be fabulous.

Well, if you read my blog with any regularity at all you’ll see that this is only my 5th blog post of the quickly disappearing summer. I have not been able to work on any freelance writing or even my own personal writing projects for that matter. Some family issues arose that have been very time and emotionally consuming for me.

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Budgeting-It’s not a four-letter word

This post was originally published in February 2017 but I felt it is worth a reprint.

Okay, so I will admit that I am a bit of a numbers geek. I love playing around with numbers and creating my budget each month. Creating a budget gives me a sense of security so I’m truly baffled that the word Budget strikes fear in so many people. Don’t you want to have a plan for your money?

So here’s some theories I have on why you don’t have or want a budget:

Maybe you have so much money you don’t need a budget because you’re free to spend whatever you want worry-free. In that case, I’m not sure why you’re bothering to read my little money blog, unless of course it’s just to have your weekly dose of Holly-ness.
Or maybe the more likely scenario is that you don’t have enough money and you think a budget isn’t for you. DUH!! I’m right there with you in the not enough money scenario and that’s exactly why I know it’s so important to have a monthly budget because you don’t want to be running out of money on day 22 of a thirty-day month.

Maybe you just think it’s too complicated and you’re not a numbers geek like me so you don’t even know where to start. Wow, this is your lucky day because guess what?? It’s not complicated and I’m going to tell you how to do it. My kid is taking calculus, that’s complicated. Geometry…that’s crazy complicated, all those stupid shapes. Setting up an easy budget is not complicated if you know how to add and subtract. You can even use a calculator or a spreadsheet…that’s not cheating, I promise.

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