My Why: FREEDOM

Over the past year or so I’ve been a journey of personal development and self reflection.  I’ve read a number of personal development books, joined Facebook groups for support and encouragement and spent countless hours thinking about what I want to change in my life and what I want my life to look like.

As a result of all of this effort, I’ve solidified My Why and it is simply FREEDOM.

1)  Financial FREEDOM:  Throughout our 16 year marriage my husband and I have made a number of bad financial decisions.  Even though we were making a decent amount of money during the first 11 or 12 years, we lived beyond our means and we are paying the price now.  We purchased a business in 2010 and it barely provides enough income for our basic necessities.  We borrowed a lot of money from family members to purchase the business.  We have huge credit card balances (I’m embarrassed to tell you the amount, so let’s just say it’s way above the national average).  All of this debt creates a lot of stress for me, my marriage and in turn for my children.  I want the financial freedom that comes with being debt free.

2)  FREEDOM to work from home:  My husband works at our business 4 1/2 days a week.  I’m there for the 1/2 day that he is not.  We both work from home on nights and weekends.  We are working hard, but not working smart.  Although we have employees that work for us for the evening and weekend shifts, the business is not profitable enough for us to hire help during the day allowing us to be at home with our children.  Although we love being small business owners, we don’t have the flexibility that we had hoped for.  I want to create my own home based business so that I have the freedom to volunteer in my children’s classrooms or chaperone field trips and so that I can be the one to take care of them when they are sick rather than leave them with a sitter because I have to go to work.

3)  FREEDOM to move to a different house:  Did you notice that I didn’t say bigger house?  We don’t need (or want) a bigger house.  We simply need a different house with a different layout.  One that works better for our family of 6.  Currently we have the world’s smallest kitchen.  It only fits one person comfortably, but it’s where everyone wants to be most of the time.  A laundry room on the second floor would also be amazing!  I want the freedom to live in a home that suits my family and our needs.

4)  FREEDOM to give generously:  We give a small donation to our church each week and we donate small sums when a family member or friend is raising money for a worthy cause, but there isn’t much money in our budget for any other donations.  I want the freedom to be able to bless others whenever I see a need. 

my why

I would love to hear about your WHY!  Please share in the comments.

How to Save Money on Groceries

I have a confession to make.  I am normally an avid coupon user.  Our budget is tight and coupons are necessary to help me stay within our grocery budget, but this summer I threw couponing out the window and went way (and I mean way) over budget.

Why?  Well it was taking me at least an hour each week to prepare for my shopping trip.   That included creating the meal plan, writing up my shopping list and preparing my coupons.  (Don’t get scared off when you read how long it takes me to prepare for grocery shopping!  I’m admittedly unorganized, which is a big reason it takes me so long.  Organization is one of the many areas of personal growth that I am working on.)

The most time consuming part for me was the coupon preparation.  I was using coupon inserts and online coupons.  Every week I would have printing problems or I was unable to locate the insert I needed and would spend way too much time looking for it (this wouldn’t be a problem if I were organized!).

Early in the summer I decided that time was a more precious commodity than money, so I stopped using coupons and I’m glad I did.

But now it’s time to get back on the couponing bandwagon and get back to staying in budget!

How am I going to do that?  With Grocery University (presented by Money Saving Mom) which includes:

  • 19 audio MP3 files
  • 40+ page printable workbook
  • BONUS: Rock-Bottom Price List

Even though I’ve been couponing for years, I’m learning new tips and tricks as I go through this audio program.  I’m so very excited to finally have a price list!  I’ve wanted one for years, but never had the time to create one.

Can you benefit from Grocery University?  YES!  Whether you are just starting out with coupons or are a seasoned pro or anywhere in between, Grocery University is for you.

You will learn how to make the most of a meal plan, how to organize your coupons, how to maximize your savings and more!

Grocery University is available for purchase now or you can wait until Tuesday, August 19th, for their “Crazy, Can’t Miss One-Day-Only Sale”.

Your purchase will be available for immediate download so you can start your grocery savings right away!

Happy Couponing!

(Please note:  This post contains affiliate links.)

My June Hustle

My June Hustle was to earn an extra $100.  I earned $70.  How did I do it?

$35 – sold baby items on my local Facebook buy/sell/trade group

$28 – sold a couple of retired Longaberger items on eBay (the $28 is after the eBay fees)

$7 – earnings from my account with Inbox Dollars

I hope I can do better in July!

This post contains affiliate links.  Please see Disclosure statement.

Letting Go

At the start of every year I set goals to earn extra cash, get rid of the clutter, be more organized, etc.  Life gets in the way and I never do any of these things.

2014 is different.  I really need to make some changes and I’m finally starting to.

This month I am doing Jon Acuff’s 30 Days of Hustle, which is his Facebook group where you set a goal and hustle for 30 days to achieve it.  The group is great source of encouragement and Jon sends you a small task every day to do to help you achieve your goal.

My goal is to earn an extra $100 by selling items we no longer use and by selling handmade items in my Etsy shop (I’m still working on this part of the goal).

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Earlier this week I sold most of these cloth diapers for $30.  The person that bought them got a great deal.  I got some much needed attic space back and I learned a great lesson.

I just need to LET GO of this stuff I’ve been hanging on to.

I bought these diapers five years ago when I was pregnant with my daughter.  I loved the idea of using cloth diapers, but the reality of having a newborn and a four year old quickly set in.  I couldn’t handle the extra laundry, so I resorted to disposables.

We’ve since had two more children and the cloth diapers sat in the attic still unused.  I hated the idea of not getting my money’s worth, so I hung on to them thinking that maybe I would.  Even if we have more children (which is highly unlikely at our ages) I know that they would still go unused.  I finally let myself forget what I paid for them and decided to sell them.

I’m so happy I did.  I feel better knowing that someone else is getting their money’s worth and I have less clutter in the house.  I’m also 30% closer to my Hustle goal!

See, I told you 2014 was different!