I spent Sunday morning blogging in a coffee shop on the computer for the first time ever. I usually write this blog in snippets on my phone when I have a few minutes (like walking to work on the days I drop the kiddo at preschool), so spending a couple hours by myself with headphones in while drinking an Americano felt like complete luxury.
I’m not sure what changed, but I’ve started to finally consider myself a “real blogger” as part of my identity instead of just simply having a blog. I’m loving watching the reach of my words grow, and I think in some way I’m treating this blog a little more seriously. Though clearly not too seriously, as I’m back blogging on my phone and still haven’t bothered to do any of the back end work I’ve considered. Baby steps, I suppose.
Sunday afternoon the kiddo and I hopped on the bus to downtown Seattle to meet up with Kassandra Dasent, who was in town for the Lola Retreat. We will both be at FinCon in a couple of weeks, but it was so nice to have one on one time this way. I adore this personal finance community, and I love getting to spend in person time whenever possible.
The only reason I go to Seattle is to see lovely friends like Kassandra
Friday’s Frugal Five
1. We went out fishing with my dad on Saturday morning and ended up bringing home fourteen salmon at the end of the morning. My dad and his friends had been out fishing for King salmon the previous week and had plenty in their freezers, so they ended up encouraging us to take the whole catch with us. It was totally unexpected, but we put out a last minute invite to our neighbors and a couple other friends to come eat with us that night.
Between my husband and the neighbor down the street who did all the cooking, they prepared the salmon six different ways. Other neighbors brought up some other dishes and we picked a bunch of tomatoes and blueberries from the garden to round out the meal.
We set up a couple of folding tables and a bunch of chairs out on our front driveway and ate out in the front yard. With twenty people, we went through quite a bit of the salmon (I’m the only one who didn’t eat any – I’ve never liked it), but we still had quite a bit left over at the end of the evening. We sent home filets with everyone, and froze the rest. Having a big haul of wild caught salmon is great, but sharing it with neighbors and friends is even better.
2. I received my quarterly Ebates check in the mail for a total of $65.45. I immediately transferred that amount into savings so that money would be realized as saved instead of being spent on something else. It may not be a huge amount in the grand scheme of things, but by going through that portal whenever we have online shopping to do that qualifies, we make a little more money for doing what we would regardless. *PS Ebates has now even renamed Rakuten, for whatever reason*
If you haven’t signed up for Rakuten (Ebates) yet, here is$10 to get started. As always, know yourself, and sign up for this kind of program if you will be disciplined to use it only when you are making a purchase anyway – not because of the online shopping coupons that encourage you to spend more.
3. We got a mailer with a 25% off coupon to our favorite local sushi restaurant, so we took advantage and went out for a dinner there. The kiddo (and my husband) both eat a lot when we go out for sushi, so the discount is very much appreciated.
By only going there when we have a coupon, we greatly reduce the number of nights we go out to eat, and we get the exact same meal when we do go, but for quite a bit less. Of course, no matter how much we end up paying for our meal thanks to a coupon or a gift card, we always tip on the original amount.
4. Wednesday ended up as an accidental vegan day, not just vegetarian. We’d had a work lunch the day before with food from Taco Del Mar, and there were plenty of leftovers in the fridge, except all the cheese had been eaten. When I realized the only thing I would be adding to my bowl that wasn’t vegan was the meat, I decided to forego it (and the sour cream).
Courtney from Modern Fimily was in town for a short work visit, and she picked up some Thai food for dinner. Thai food is the easiest for me to order vegan, so that is what I did. While I definitely will continue to eat meat in a household that is very biased toward it, my goal has been to mindfully reduce my consumption – and be intentional about where those foods come from when we do eat them. (Also – I did have a guest post a while back from someone who is vegan, if you want to read some really good reasons to consider it)
And then not vegan, but Thursday’s dinner was grown and sourced all within 150 miles (heavily from produce directly from my garden). Not vegan, but all hyper local and the meat from a sustainable, local farm. Pretty awesome and satisfying.
5. Our son receives a quarter twice a day for feeding the dogs and has been filling up his mason jar piggy bank given to him by That Frugal Pharmacist last fall. He occasionally gets money as gifts or if he finds a coin on the ground, and it’s getting pretty full these days.
Whenever we are out and he says he “really, really” wants something that isn’t on our list for purchasing that day, I let him know he is able to spend his own money if he wants. Almost every time, he decides he doesn’t want it after all.
This week, though, he decided that he really, really wanted to buy himself a pack of bubble gum (after he and a friend had gone through a full pack in one day so I wasn’t replacing it immediately). I told him he could pay for it with his own money – four quarters – and he decided it was worth the cost. We walked down to the grocery store with a couple of his neighbor friends, and he purchased the pack of gum with his own money brought in the wallet he was given for his last birthday.
I feel like we’re muddling through and just starting to slowly teach him money values, but I’m hoping that by living it out and making the conversation simply a part of life, it will stick with him as he gets older and the numbers get bigger.
I barely hit my step count on Friday and Saturday. Those are the days I’m particularly glad up upped my step goal to 12,000 a day, because otherwise I would have quit at 10,000. Still not super active days, but a little better than if I set the bar a little lower.
Sunday was a walk around Seattle when we met up with Kassandra. Not matter what, a day that includes a bus ride always means a bit more walking. Tuesday was my walk to work and then a short run and lifting session at the gym in the afternoon.
Wednesday was a morning run by myself in the rain, and then a walk with Courtney, the kiddo, and a couple neighbor kids. She and I have known each other for a while online thanks to connecting on Instagram, and it was so wonderful to have some time together face to face.
Thursday was an afternoon outside. The kiddo and I played catch for a while (which looked like him launching it over my head and me running after it before it rolled down the hill), biking around the cul de sac, and puttering around in the garden.
PS I had my first published article go live today in Business Insider – go check it out!
How do you talk to your kids about money?