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Archive for December, 2012

Can you put a price on fitness?

December 30, 2012 6 comments

AZ1I’m considering dropping about $2,400 on a Crossfit membership in 2013.  That’s about 10% of my 2012 budget.

I’ve been going back and forth on this issue for a few weeks and I’ve decided to finally pull the trigger.  In the past, the only fitness costs I’ve incurred are the sign-up fees for marathons/half marathons.  It got me thinking about what the price of fitness should be.

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Financial update – Q4 2012

December 27, 2012 12 comments

Income VS Spending Q4 2012 (2)

2012 has been a fantastic year for learning about personal finance   Since starting my financial turnaround in January, 2012, I’ve been able to accomplish quite a bit.  Here are a few highlights.

  • I know where all my money is going and I now have a functioning budget
  • I started this blog to keep myself honest and help those who happen to wonder by
  • My income rose by about 7%
  • My spending has fallen by about 40%
  • My passive income rose by an alarming amount (from 0 to a little over $1,300)

In 2011, I had an after tax savings rate of 20%.  In 2012, I failed to meet my goal of 50%, but I did hit 47% (not too shabby).

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The Great E-Reader VS Library Debate

December 26, 2012 7 comments

Airplane

Because you’re reading this post, I can tell you like reading.  Whether it’s learning new skills, entertaining yourself, or just getting by in the world, anyone interested in improving their finances is going to end up doing quite a bit of reading.  But should you use old-fashioned books from the library, or buy an e-reader?  After trying out both for a while, I’ve got an answer for you, so stay tuned!

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Categories: Enjoying Life Tags: ,

It’s because I spend less, not because I make more

December 23, 2012 2 comments

Chicago

I have a dear friend named Sam who enjoys chatting about money when we get together every week or so.  Whenever I lend some advice about how to handle her financial issues, she swipes aside my comments because in her words, “Of course it’s easy for you because you make so much more than me”.  Sam happens to be a teacher and I’m an engineer, so I do make a bit more than her, but the point I’ve been unable to get across is that my finances are sound because I spend less than her, not just because I make more than her.

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Give assets, not liabilities this Xmas

December 20, 2012 2 comments

Xmas 2010I’ve found a new weapon to battle the curse that tricks droves and droves of mindless consumers each Christmas!  It’s not a peppermint scented battle ax, or a read and white ray gun (though that would be festive).  It’s simply a new philosophy on how I choose gifts for the important people in my life.

I’ve already had the annual post-Thanksgiving conversation with my family, and it went something like this…

me – ” Why don’t we actually reduce the amount of stuff we buy each other this year because a lot of it ends up wasted“.

Everyone else – “Totally, that sounds great” (with their fingers crossed behind their backs).

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Categories: Enjoying Life Tags: ,

My Investing Strategy: Taking the first step

December 19, 2012 1 comment

Meteor_Crater1

As you know, I’ve been able to save quite a bit of money this year.  As my savings account began to grow past my annual spending, I decided it was time to figure out what investing was all about.  I certainly made a few mistakes along the way, but after reading more and more about investing, I am starting to feel comfortable with my strategy.

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Categories: Investing Tags:

Setting crazily-optimistic goals

December 17, 2012 12 comments

Running

I’m often reminded of the parallels between running and building wealth when I’m out on a cold morning jog.  They both come down to learning how to work hard, setting goals, and sticking to a plan.  A recent post by Mrs. PoP on this subject motivated me to write this piece about the importance of crazily-optimistic goals.

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Categories: The Master Plan Tags: , ,
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