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Preparing for the EPIC Food Budget Challenge of January 2017

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Before reading any further, please understand that I know that $50 a week for food is totally doable and many people survive on way less.  This challenge in general is only meant to help food over-spenders like us to feel motivated to cut back.  It is not intended to pour salt into any wounds.  Thanks! My friend, Dee, has had a tumultuous end to 2016.  She got pregnant in September, her husband lost his job in November, they had to tackle some tough financial realizations, and he just started in a new job this week.  Overall, it’s amazing to only be unemployed for less than a month, right?  But they are still tightening their financial belts and Dee mentioned a food budget challenge that had my ears pricking up…$50 a week for 4 weeks straight. Why I Want to Do the $50 a Week Food Budget Challenge My husband and I spend WAY more than we need to on food.  Specifically, fast food and restaurants are vices that we dive into happily whenever we feel like it.  This has led our overall food budget to increase from $450-$500 a month to $700+ a month over the last year or two.  … Read more…

Obligatory but Awesome Christmas Gift Post

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The annual Christmas gift ideas post by Crystal, perfect for nerdy friends!

I’m one of those people who sincerely enjoy the gift giving part of Christmas.   I bask in the hunt to find gifts for my loved ones that they’d truly use and enjoy.  The sticking point is that means finding gifts for 25-30 people, generally on a budget of $400-$500. Here are a few of my favorite ideas this year for $20 or less… My Funny Gift Winner Here’s a $10-$15 funny wine glass sure to make anybody laugh. Personalized Movie Night or Book Baskets – ALL the Details I put together these sorts of gift baskets for people who are picky or already buy what they want.  All you need to do is pay attention to what sort of movies or books they enjoy.  Then find something in that genre for sale. For example, action movie fans may like R.E.D. and it’s on sale right now on Amazon (Dec. 12, 2016) for less than $4 for the DVD or $10 for the Blu-ray.  If they enjoy heist movies / con movies, Inside Man is one of our absolute faves and is on sale for $6 DVD or $10 Blu-Ray too.  And comedies like Mrs. Doubtfire are $4-$9. For books, get … Read more…

November 2016 Self-Employment Income of $7930 (Net Worth of $534,180)

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This couple turned dead end cubicle jobs into motivation to start their own businesses and earn $100,000 a year working from home. Great tips on how to make life work for you!

It’s that time again! I like to use monthly income and net worth updates for motivation. Posting them pushes me to try harder, I am forced to look at our numbers, and I started blogging so I could share with all of you and get feedback. I would also like to inspire more people to create income streams out of something they truly enjoy. My Backstory for New Readers I worked in a dead end cubicle job from after college in 2005 through July 2011. It wasn’t possible for me to grow in the department I enjoyed, and the rest of the company would have sucked my soul out through my ears.  My highest salary there was $35,500 after 6 years.  My original plan was to stay there for 30 years and retire. Thankfully, that plan went to crap. The company was in a slump in late 2009, so they told me to “look busy”… That led me to creating Budgeting in the Fun Stuff in February 2010 even though I had zero professional writing or blogging experience.  It grew faster than I expected (thank you!), and I have been fully self-employed since July 2011. My husband joined me very … Read more…

Baby Budget Woes of a New Dad

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Kids are expensive! Budgeting for a new baby can be tricky, use this list to help you plan it before you need the cash.

This following post was written by my friend, Joshua Crum, father of three. He’s also the Lead Credit Repair Expert (to my knowledge, he’s still a team of one, lol) of  In short, he helps people get rid of zombie debt, figure out how to manage their current finances, and get them on the right path.  I met Josh at FinCon16 and he’s been a real friend for these last couple of months – this is an in-real-life guy actually doing this stuff…not just one of those spam companies we all delete immediately.  🙂 First, becoming a new parent is stressful enough.  One of the biggest issues is budgeting as a new dad or parent. There is so much new stuff to consider. It’s overwhelming at first!  So, I strive to make things easier and more predictable. Here is where I simplify the chaos as much as possible. Food Costs First comes food, one major expense that adds up very fast. Most new parents do not count on an increasing food budget. If you are lucky, at first mom can breastfeed. Not only is this great for baby but for your family’s budget as well. It literally saves gobs … Read more…

Positivity and a “Can Do” Attitude Could Make You Rich!

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How do you motivate yourself to keep working when something has gone wrong or when others see more success? Here's my motivation. Pinning this for inspiration!

Do you read Budgets Are Sexy or Making Sense of Cents?  How about Smart Passive Income?  ESI Money or Money Boss?  I read them all, though less often than I should.  They are all at the top of their game.  J Money recently turned down a $1 million deal for his sexy blog bunch.  Michelle is making $100,000 a MONTH from affiliate income…and created a course about it. Pat Flynn is…well, Pat Flynn (Google “king of online money”).   He’s making millions a year. ESI Money just pulled off early retirement.  Money Boss sold his previous site for beaucoup bucks years ago and is restarting a blog empire. Shared Qualities of the Successful Do you know what they have in common?  They are sincerely wonderful people.  I’ve met them.  They are awesome.  But more importantly for our class today, they’re positive people and are all more motivated than squirrels are for nuts.  Yep, positivity and a “can do” attitude is what it takes…makes you gag, right?  Well, suck it up.  I know for a fact that those two ingredients make the recipe for success.  How?  Because that’s how I grew BFS so quickly when I started in 2010 and how I’m … Read more…

“Budgeting in the Baby Stuff” – Third Official Update

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The road to having a baby is more than just pregnancy, there are a lot of details to plan for!

WARNING: I’m a sharer who will be talking about trying to get pregnant, and hopefully in the future, about pregnancy itself. If you didn’t know, all of that stuff includes subjects that some people may find too personal or think it’s “too much information” (TMI). If you are that sort of person, my blog is probably not for you but specifically, these posts aren’t for you. Thanks! Nope, still not pregnant. I’m 33 years old (turning 34 in a month), and I was using the Nuvaring for birth control for more than a decade. I stopped in November 2015.  My body returned to normal, baby-making processes in early 2016. I still have no idea when or if I will get pregnant.  I’m not too worried about it, though now that my best friend is pregnant, I am taking it more seriously.  I’m hoping it happens for us soon so our kids can grow up together.  But we’ll have a good life either way. Our Process So Far We’ve been trying the “classic” way.  And because of a couple of commenters during my first update, I started paying attention to my cervical mucus (which should have been called ‘gina juice, hehehe).  That didn’t … Read more…

Two Black Friday Sales Bloggers Will Love!

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I’m not going to write a novel today.  Just a heads up on two awesome sales for bloggers! Grow Your Affiliate Income I’ve mentioned jumping into the ecourse – Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing by Michelle over at Making Sense of Cents. Just some quick points of awesomeness: It spells out how to start making affiliate income.  In detail.  I’ve went from $0 to more than $1500 since implementing just a few things I learned this year by skimming.  I’m spending the rest of this year implementing things step by step. You get to be a member of the course’s Facebook group, which is like being handed the keys to the best blogger library ever.  We motivate each other.  The more experienced help answer questions.  We all help promote and support each other.  The admission to that Facebook group is worth the way more than the usual $197 price of the course if you are interested in growing your blog at all!!! Today through Sunday (Nov 25-27, 2016), take $38 off by clicking on this link and typing in the code BLACKFRIDAY38 at checkout.  That’s $159 instead of $197!!! I don’t spend a lot on my blog.  This course is worth way … Read more…