Money Diet November: All Tallied Up

Money-Diet

Money Diet = Frugal Living Awesome I’m a huge fan of having periodic money diets in order to kick my savings into high-gear. This particular one was motivated by my upcoming move to Canada, which certainly ain’t gonna be cheap. Nothing says “frugal living” than posting all your spending online in a Facebook group with other people, and then also doing a post about it on here. Money Diet March: Some Previous Results Here are…

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Hobbies: Do you need to go all-in?

touring bicycle

My Wise Friend The other day I was talking to a friend of mine whose husband wanted to learn to play the guitar. Wisely, instead of just buying him the guitar, she instead got him a rental one and some lessons so he could decide if he actually liked it. He did and then he bought his own. My Unwise Friend Or, I had a friend a few years ago who was buying a bike.…

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All-In Digital Entrepreneur when I Go Back to Canada: Crazy?

all-in

Canada: What to Do I’ve talked about moving to Canada in previous blog posts, and it’s now less than a year away (March 2016). I’ve started preparing in numerous ways such as gathering information about how to get the cats and my stuff back to Canada and also giving away/selling lots of my stuff that I wasn’t really using that much. How Can I Make Money in the Great White North? But, the really big…

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Am I Crazy? What actually makes me feel happy

old t-shirt

What Makes Most People Happy Retail therapy. It’s called this for a reason-most people get a little bit of a rush or endorphin surge when they buy something that they want. Then, every time they put on that new shirt or drive that new car, they have this kind of happy feeling about it. While the effect does wear down over time, there is always more and more stuff to buy so you can live…

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March Money Diet Final Update

money diet challenge

Money Diet March is now complete, so here are all the details about my spending for the month. I wanted to spend a total of $400 in discretionary spending, but it ended up being $516. It was kind of an eye opener seeing how much money I spent when I was watching all my pennies and I now realize that I generally spend a lot more than I think I do when I’m not paying…

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Money Diet Week 4 Update

money diet

In case you missed the previous money diet posts, check out: Money Diet Week 1 ($117), Week 2 ($76), Week 3 ($163). Week 4 Money Diet Challenge Update: $141 Groceries: $22 Eating out, coffee, drinking: $14 Transportation (including a tank of gas): $54 Vet bill: $51 Overall, I’m pretty happy with week 4 since I would have been under $100 if I didn’t have to go to the vet. I also could have waited on…

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Money Diet Challenge: Week 2 Update

money diet challenge

I’m doing a March Money Diet Challenge to kick-start my return to Canada savings. My goal is to spend less than $400 for the month on discretionary things. Week 1 was not fabulous at $117, but week 2 came in at a solid $76 with no unexpected expenses (last week I had a $40 bicycle repair). Here’s the week 2 money diet spending breakdown: Transportation: $9 Groceries: $4 Entertainment (coffee, eating out, drinking, karaoke): $63…

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Frugal Living: Dental Care

A Confession I have a confession to make, but I feel pretty okay putting it out there into the blogosphere because i think it’s something that a lot of people also neglect. I loathe going to the dentist and at previous points in my life, sometimes years would slip by between appointments. Except that once I hit my thirties and started getting cavities and root canals, I knew that this strategy was clearly a bad…

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Money Diet Challenge: Top 5 Tips

And so it Begins The money diet is starting tomorrow and although it’s been a few years since I’ve gone on a diet, I’m super excited for this challenge. In years gone by, I’ve totally kicked butt at money diet challenges and don’t think I’ve ever lost one. Here are my secrets and even though they’re secrets I’m going to share with you because I want to help my readers be as awesome as they…

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The Wealthy English Teacher: Samples from the Book

My second book, The Wealthy English Teacher is hot off the press and now available on Amazon in both digital and print formats. Initial sales have been promising with more than 20 copies sold in just a couple of days with no paid advertising. I’m hoping that people will really like it and tell their friends-there really is no other financial book (or even resource on the Internet) that is specifically for ESL teachers. If…

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Money Diet Challenge

One of my Biggest Fears I’ll be leaving my home for the last 10 years, Korea and going to Canada in about a year from now. In preparation for this move, I’ve been officially on money-spending lock-down and am all about the frugal living, even more than I was previously. There is truly nothing scarier to me than arriving in Canada with basically nothing more than what I can fit in 2 suitcases, nowhere to…

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Spend Less Than You Earn

I ran across this article, 60 Simple Rules of Personal Finance over at The Simple Dollar the other day and thought I would do a series, talking about some of my favorite points. Spend Less Than You Earn This is probably my favorite personal finance tip of all time and if you do only this, and nothing else for your entire life, you’ll probably retire rich, or at least comfortably. I’m currently writing a book…

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Respect the $10- It’s how you become rich

Thanks Mr. Money Mustache I was just over at Mr Money Mustache and was reading this article, “A Millionaire is Made 10 Bucks at a Time” and felt inspired to post. The Quick Summary Basically, the article talked about how we seem to have lost respect for the $10 bill and that we don’t actually think of it as that much money. We just spend it without even thinking about it, but it can actually…

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Moving and Getting Rid of Stuff: Easier than Expected

I Love Simplicity–How Did I Accumulate so much Crap? Over my decade in Korea, I have accumulated as astounding amount of stuff, made all the easier by the fact that I now live in quite a large apartment and despite the fact that I’m actually all about the simplicityand I have this vision of myself as living out of a couple suitcases. It is not the reality that I live in however, and since I’m…

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5 Truths for Wealth-Builders

I was just cruising around on Yahoo Finance and I ran across this article which sums up pretty nicely what I think about personal finance. 5 Power Truths for Wealth Builders by David Ning. I particularly liked the ones about considering the downside and a little effort can lower your expenses. With regards to considering the downside, he mentions stocks and how many people don’t consider that that hot stock which seems to be going…

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Wal-Mart….what has happened to me?

After living in South Korea, land of way overpriced consumer products and no big “everything under 1 roof” stores for almost 10 years, Wal-Mart in Canada seems like it would be a dream. Cheap, huge selection and everything you could possibly want. Except I went yesterday to pick up a few hard-to-find things in South Korea and came away with very little and I spent considerably less than I had budgeted for my “Wal-Mart in…

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Short-term vs. Long-Term thinking and how it relates to financial success

These past few days, I’ve been working away on my new book about financial freedom for teachers abroad and the following thought has been running through my head. Financial success all comes down to short-term vs. long-term thinking. There are lots of people who don’t think beyond the immediate in front of them-today, this week, this month and next month. These people often struggle to pay their bills each month and live in the land…

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Another Ebook: Financial Freedom for English Teachers

I’ve been encouraged by the sales of my first book, How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams which was an experiment of sorts and am feeling inspired to write another one during my winter vacation. Although I’ll be traveling to Canada and Vietnam, I’m not actually doing any teaching and I will have significant chunks of time to devote to it. The first book was a…

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How much money do you need to be happy?

I was listening to a recent podcast from The Best of the Left (Capitalism Will Not Set You Free) and they were talking about how the law of diminishing returns can apply to your salary and happiness level. Up to around 75 000 US, people’s happiness increases as their salary does. But, after that level, it kind of has no effect and there are even some examples of happiness decreasing such as when someone wins…

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Frugal Living: running

In days gone by, I used to run, a lot. Like I did a few 1/2 marathons and a full marathon (I finished in a slow 5 hours, 5 minutes). I loved it because it was so peaceful, I could do it outside in any season or weather condition and it made me feel really good. I’m kind of convinced that the runner’s high people speak of is actually a real thing. I only quit…

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Frugal Living: A Short Commute

In Korea, English teachers are often giving housing as part of their employment package. Except at my university, everyone just gets a housing allowance and you’re responsible for finding your own, which means that you can basically live anywhere that you want. Although the neighborhood I live in isn’t the most luxurious (far from the beach, no expat bars and few restaurant/shopping choices), my house is only a 20 minute walk from work, and it’s…

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Mr Money Mustache

I’ve been hearing from more and more of my friends who’ve gotten on the thrifty/saving money/ investing bandwagon about Mr. Money Mustache, or MMM for short, which leads me to believe that he’s one of the most popular bloggers in this genre. I just spend a significant amount of time perusing his site, and I can definitely understand why. He’s funny, well-informed and well-spoken. Some posts that I particularly appreciated are: Frugal vs. Cheap. (Please…

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Flight Tickets….at what point do you just need to stop?

This year, I decided to head back to the motherland (Canada) for Christmas to visit the family and I’ve been searching for a few weeks online for the cheapest ticket prices. There quite literally is nothing under about $1400, unless I want to linger in airports and on airplanes for 30 or 40 hours, which obviously I do not want to do when I could actually get to my hometown in about 15-16 hours on…

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