5 Budget Areas to Review Before Saying I Do
- Created on 23 October 2014
I recently installed a related posts plugin. It creates a list of links to articles with similar topics. The nostalgia has me reading old posts and strolling down memory lane.
In four years of blogging and working to encourage #teamdebtfree members to maintain family budgets, save money, and strive for debt free living; we’ve amassed a large collection of articles. In addition, we’ve shared some pretty interesting guest posts too.
One of our first guest posts to a popular blog, Black and Married with Children, was White Board Economics. This funny story about a white board and pre-wedding, Come-To-Jesus meeting one of our financial coaches had with her then fiancé. To this day, we laugh heartily at how a white board saved a marriage and helped bring two together as one on the same page financially.
Don’t Give Up
- Created on 21 October 2014
If you’re not up on Sesame Street’s music production, you’re missing out. Grant it, with toddlers running around my ankles – Sesame Street and other children’s programming have become a part of my regular routine. Enjoyed throughout my childhood, Sesame Street really keeps up with the trends while keeping the focus purely on educational development. That said, we groove out to the music videos almost every day.
I’ve actually created a Youtube playlist that is crucial for hair braiding time (that and a steamy bowl of oatmeal. Don’t ask – it just works). The two-year old and I rock out to a 30 minute set and all is well by the end. The music videos are well produced, catchy, and have the best messages. Being out of the mainstream loop, I didn’t realize the songs were remakes of popular productions – none of which I’ve even seen to date. A song with Bruno Mars and a delightful cast of puppets has me thinking about those who need encouragement on the debt free journey.
Grocery Shopping vs Eating Out Smack Down
- Created on 18 October 2014
In the first corner we have unprepared foods. They required a little more energy (energy, energy) which can be difficult to muster (muster, muster) after a long day, hard day. In the next corner, restaurant food. Quick and tasty with all the added sodium (sodium, sodium). Hits the spot, but can put a hurt’n on your wallet (wallet, wallet).
When I met WonderMan, he was convinced that preparing home cooked meals was more expensive than his daily $5 Whataburger sandwich and shake habit. He was a bachelor who hated cooking. I was in love. It was his money (and high cholesterol history). Who cared? Fast forward 16 years later, he still abhors cooking and I’m not convinced that restaurant food is ever less expensive. Let the smack down begin.
6 Financial Lessons We Didn’t Get in Home EC
- Created on 14 October 2014
I learned how to sew an apron, make a creamy beef and biscuit meal, and a slew of other household related tasks in Home EC. For high school, it was an easy A. The creamy beef meal was actually quite tasty! We covered a number of helpful topics on house management (I didn’t go to school in the 50’s either). However, I didn’t learn one cent about managing the household finances. Why is that? 80% of household financial decisions are made by women. I don’t remember the demographic/gender breakdown of my elective Home EC class (not that it matters); but budgeting, saving and reconciling accounts should have been on the menu.
Weekend Reading - Win Cash and Prizes
- Created on 10 October 2014
I’ve been stepping up my blog networking activities. As such, I’ve noticed something very interesting. Everyone is giving away something! For the price of an email, a tweet, or Facebook follow; you can walk away with serious cash. Have you ever won anything? I have. $200 from Debt.org to share my story of dumping debt. I shared that with members of #teamdebtfree (I love you guys!!!). I also won a great book from Dr. Steve Perry, “Push Has Come to Shove” about transforming the American educational system. Great read! Sometimes I end up on a mailing list and later need to opt out...sometimes.
4 Easy Ways to Clean up Your Credit
- Created on 09 October 2014
Keeping a good credit score, not having debt, saving and investing are my top priorities. Luckily, I married a man with the exact same money values as me. It wasn’t always this way. In fact, a year after dating I found out he had a student loan in default, in addition to multiple past-due credit card payments. Yikes!
He wasn’t happy with his current situation (who would be, really?) and was more than willing to do what it took to get his finances in order. In just 3 years, his credit score went from the low-500s to mid-700s!! Cleaning up your credit is not only possible, but it’s actually easy. I’m sharing 4 tips with you on how to clean up your credit in just 3 years.
How To Get Started With Coupons
- Created on 06 October 2014
If you're reading this blog, either you are debt free or you want to be debt free. We get into debt when we spend more than we earn. You can prevent this deficit in one of two ways - create more income or reduce your expenses. Buying household items like food, health & beauty supplies, and toiletries can easily be a large discretionary line item in your monthly budget.
Using coupons is a great way to reduce your spending on groceries and other household items. Overwhelmed at the idea? Read on for an introduction on how to get started with coupons.
This post is by Raki Wright from Outside the Box Mom.
5 Surefire Ways to Finish Strong
- Created on 03 October 2014
Can you believe ¾ of 2014 is already behind us? Where has the time gone? Thinking back, my year involved a number of major life changing events. We welcomed a new addition to the clan. More people required more space and a short sale warmed its way into our hearts. We journeyed to Hawaii and seriously considered relocating (well maybe not we). Not all events were joy-filled. The family business of 10 years – our Laundromat – came to an abrupt end which promises to present beneficial lessons one would rather avoid. More on that soon.
Pay Cash for Christmas 2014
- Created on 01 October 2014
We’re bringing back the Pay Cash for Christmas challenge with a twist! This time, the Debt Free Divas have partnered with Just Another Mom to increase the prize and spark your competitive spirit. Fall is here and we have exactly 12 weeks until Christmas. Yes, I’m talking about Christmas. Have you seen the crazy commercials already trying to pry money from your pockets? We need to be proactive.
We’re on the cusp of one of the busiest shopping seasons of the year. The National Retail Federation reports that Americans spent an average of $730 on holiday spending in 2013. How much of your total landed on credit cards subject to interest? This year, let’s try Christmas with no strings attached. Will you pledge to take no new debt into 2015? To that end, we’re giving one lucky winner $250 towards the holiday spending.
Yakezie Challenge Part Deux
- Created on 29 September 2014
If at first you don't succeed (as with a debt free journey or coaxing a 9 month old into a much needed nap), try again. I came across the Yakezie challenge as a new blogger. This is a great community of personal finance and lifestyle bloggers who really were central in the development of the Debt Free Divas blog. The challenge goal to lower your blog rank is doable. Plenty of great bloggers that I heavily respect have walked this road before.
Life happens. Plans change. Priorities evolve. Well, I'm back. My current rank is 575,000 and my goal is 200,000 by the end of 2014. I must commit to regular, weekly posts and support other bloggers reach their target in the challenge. That I can do. As with the Power of Community experiment, the momentum to reach goals is supercharged with the power of accountability. My original goals haven't changed. I may have back-burnered the challenge before, but that wasn't the end of the story. Has your debt free journey hit a snag or bend in the road? Let's dust ourselves off and jump back into these challenges with both feet. Let's do this!