Frugal Findlay: Free Budgeting Workshop for Me!

I’m about a week behind schedule, but I had to share my first step to financial independence. Plus it was free! Win-win for me.

My local library runs a lot of free activities, including book clubs and apparently, financial seminars. First Frugal Findlay tip: Find free things to do. The local library is usually a good place to start!

The one closest to me last week offered one on budgeting, which was put on my local Credit Counselling Society. I signed up and then showed up on schedule, which was 6:30 pm.

The presenter was well informed and very interesting to listen to. He had a background as a teacher, as well as a bank manager, which truly came out in his presentation. The steps were quite straightforward and if it was still difficult to follow, he referred us to the local credit counselling society, where they could provide support around budgeting and debt repayment.

Frugal Findlay fact: Some, but not all, credit counselling societies are run as non-profits. This means that they receive donations (usually from the big banks!) to provide services to individuals. If you require support in regards to credit, pick a non-profit one. Cost will be lower for you and you won’t be paying an arm and a leg for help.

I also ended up going home with a lot of amazing information and helpful tools, including a monthly expense tracker. My goal from this day forward is track where my money is going, in least for the next month.

As well, it left me with a feeling that apparently, I have been doing better than I thought. I keep track of my money through Mint.com, I have a small savings account, and a small RRSP plan. It’s something. Needless to say, the priority is still debt repayment and stopping those NSF charges from my old bank (who I know HATE). Either way, it was a small step forward and one that has left me with some serious homework ahead.

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Frugal Findlay: The Journey Begins

On Wednesday, after a meeting with my manager, I learned that my workplace was dropping my yearly salary by about $3000. Now, losing that much of a yearly income is a big deal, don’t get me wrong, but especially for me.

Needless to say, I haven’t been doing to well on the managing my money piece. When I started my job after grad school almost 4 years ago, I was like “WOW, I am going to make more money then I ever did before!” I had plans: car, pet, vacations. I thought I was living the life. I was like that scene from Jerry Maguire, “SHOW ME THE MONEY!”

The reality of the situation slowly set in. I had a debt of approximately $18,000. And I needed to pay it off. Plus I wanted to continue living the life I had dreamed for myself. Needless to say, these two things did not mesh.

Bringing us back to this Wednesday, I am once again hit by the reality of the situation. I need to cut corners because of less money coming in, pay down debt, and have a life. Perhaps most importantly, that is the order that it is in as well.

The journey has begun. Welcome to my attempts to save money, pay off my debt, and still be a young fun 30 something. May the adventure begin!

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Fall Fashion, or what I bought and love

Last week where I live here in the Great White North, the temperature dropped. Big time. I went from cute maxi dress and shorts, to jeans and sweaters.

Also, I don’t have much to say about my dating life, but my shopping trips have not disappointed!

Needless to say, this got me in the mood for fall shopping. So armed with my credit card, off to the mall I went. I apologized to my credit card for the damage that was done.

So here are my favorites at the moment, complete with links if you want to buy them yourselves. Enjoy!

Gap Track Pants: quite possibly the best pants ever. I have them in black and they are SO comfy. Plus they look nice so you can wear them to work without your manager being all “you’re not following dress code”. I have paired them with everything from a t-shirts and sneakers, to heels and a blazer. Run, don’t walk, for these pants! I promise, you will love them.

H&M Flannel Shirt:It’s comfy, it’s cute, it’s perfectly fall. It’s also very soft (I love soft things!). I got it in green and the color is fabulous. This is not my Dad’s plaid shirt!

Aldo ankle boots: I have a pair in cognac, which I love, but I wanted a pair in black. These ones won. They are actually really comfortable, which I find surprising for heels. I’ve warn them a ton, more specifically 5 times in the last week alone. They are just perfect and go with everything, including track pants and a flannel shirt.

Of course, there is more, but I’m sure I will be back with what I buy again in the near future. Love to hear other people’s take on the trends, so feel free to comment.

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Calling in sick

Yesterday, at 4:03 pm EST, I texted my date for that evening and told him I had a migraine and wouldn’t be able to make our date. I asked to re-schedule.

I haven’t heard back from him.

Now, this is something I have never done before. Plus there has been many an occasion in which I have FORCED myself to go on a date, even when I really didn’t want to. This usually ended in me either a) hating myself or b) really not liking the guy and never seeing him again. I also tended to think of the 20 other things I could be doing, including drinking tea in my underwear while watching Netflix with the cat. Please don’t judge.

This time around, I decided to ring true to myself and if I didn’t like or didn’t feel like it, I wouldn’t do it. Dating, in my opinion, is suppose to be fun. Not a chore. It’s suppose to be exciting and interesting, maybe even a little bit sexy and romantic. Definitely not the “here we go again feeling” that I have been experiencing.

So I said no. And instead, spent the evening with my wonderful friend and my new niece, who has stolen my heart at a day old. Strangely enough, that is EXACTLY what I needed and I went home feeling happy, thankful, and alive. Most importantly, I felt love, not only for myself, but a five pound bundle of joy who already knows she has me wrapped around my finger.

I took a step forward yesterday and I am thankful that I did. It was just what I needed.

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Where did you go? Or better yet, where can I find you?

As a single 30 year old woman, this is a question I have been asking a lot of myself lately. Well, maybe not me specifically, but the universe. 

Last week for example, I looked to the sky (well, ceiling) and asked God (or the universe) the simple question of what have I done in this life that has left me single, when other people can find people to marry, date, and want to have sex with. What makes me so different? Why doesn’t this work for me? WHY ME?!

To be honest, I wish I had an answer that made sense. I wish I was a horrible human being, unworthy of love. Or that I just didn’t want to be with anyone and needed to be on my own. Needless to say, I don’t have an answer for you. Or even a half way decent answer for me. Though that would be a good place to start. I even went to see my therapist today and even she couldn’t give me an answer.

The thing I’m thinking is that I may be looking in the wrong places. I am doing online dating, but that does not seem to get anywhere. On top of that, I work in a female dominated profession and went to school doing something very similar. Needless to say, I find it hard to meet the men.

So universe (or internet universe), I’m open to suggestions. Where do I go? Where do I look? And how can I find you?

I believe the answer is out there. I hope that somehow, or some way, the answer comes to me. 

And I promise to share. 🙂

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To start again

September 5, 2014: Here I am, trying to start writing a blog again.

Initially, I was inspired by blogs I read to write, to share with the world my inner workings. I was successful for about a month.

Life has changed quite a bit since that initial post and yet, is still very much the same. I wish I could share with you all something amazing and beautiful. Heck, even some progress in some departments. However, that is not always the case.

But join me on this adventure and we will start again. Because sometimes, that is all you can do.

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Day 22: Progress!

Good news online world: I have exercised a minimum of 20 minutes a day for the last 22 days. That includes days I didn’t want, days I didn’t feel good, and days where doing sit-ups in my underwear at 11:30 pm made sense. But I did it! I got through the first 22 days!

Out of curiosity, I weighed myself last night and am now down another 3 pounds. Now, I wasn’t hoping to lose weight, it just happens to be a nice fringe benefit. Also, I can now do bicep curls with 8 pound weights. This is another victory.

It has been interesting for me to actually see the progress. I’m losing weight, I’m lifting heavy weights, I’m not finding excuses not to work out. It’s fantastic!

That being said though, the holiday season is just around the corner and if things are going to start going downhill, that would be then. I’m trying to be realistic and also stick to my goals. Even if it means working out in my Grandma’s basement on Christmas Day. Or hung over.

So the journey continues! Onwards and upwards!

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