Archive for the ‘How I Do It’ Category

Why I Hate This Tax Season and Why It Hates Me Back

Tax season is upon us (in case you have not noticed it yet.) I noticed it a long time ago, and not because I really enjoy this time of the year or find it fascinating. If anything, I find it cumbersome. Quite disturbing. Alarming. I pick a night to work on my taxes, I pour myself a glass of wine, settle in front of my computer and by the time I open my spreadsheets and glance over my tax forms, I want to give up on a glass of wine and look for the bottle. I feel like I am(…)

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My Cheap Broke-Ass Wedding

I never wanted to spend much money on my wedding. Of course, I wanted it to be nice, and not a drive-through style wedding in a Las Vegas chapel. However, I never wanted to spend thousands and thousands of dollars. For a few simple reasons. The first reason was obvious. I always believed that in order for your future married life to be happy, it did not really matter how lavish your wedding was. What mattered was if you were able to find and marry your equal. The second reason was even more obvious. Beaker and I were broke-ass newlyweds-to-be.

Therefore,(…)

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Love Skiing But Hate Spending? Go Nordic.

Utah. Dry summers. Cold winters. Snowy mountains. Expensive ski resorts.

Utahns love their snow so much that they claim to have “The Best Snow on Earth.” I can argue with this statement. To say something like this means you are way too arrogant to my liking. Personally, I think the best snow on Earth is at the North Pole. But I digress.

In spite of living in a ski state, neither Beaker nor I have ever skied. Neither of us can get to the top of a steep slope, and effortlessly glide down. Neither of us can conquer the mountains. There is(…)

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What I Wish I Knew About Life and Finances In My 20s

I was born in the Soviet Republic of Lithuania. My financial education was nonexistent for about two decades after my birth. Neither my mother, nor my grandmother ever talked to me about financial management. Money was not a taboo, it was just the way everyone was raised in our family: you lived from paycheck to paycheck, sometimes asking for advance, sometimes borrowing from friends.

I graduated from college at age twenty, got married, got my first job, and then money trouble started, followed by marriage problems. My mother was by then living in the United States, and was wrapped up in(…)

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My Not Quite Traditional Marriage

Today is our seventh year anniversary. Seven years of marriage. Seven years of shared experiences, dreams and plans. Seven years of getting to know each other.  Seven years of a life together.

When we met over seven years ago, both of us were poor. I was a full-time student, working full-time, my spending problems were in full gear, debt piling up. Beaker was living with his friend, driving a beat up car, and bouncing checks after our third or fourth date. The first time he told me that he bounced a check after one of our dates, I said that we(…)

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What Would You Take With You in Case of a Fire?

Lately I’ve been feeling overwhelmed by a feeling of guilt. No, I did not hurt anyone, I did not steal anything, I did not lie, and no, I did not go on a binge shopping trip (not that I did not want to!)

I’ve been feeling guilty because I feel that I became too materialistic, too attached to stuff. If anything dreadful happens to us, I will be devastated by a loss of material things that took years to accumulate. I realize that material possessions are just bits and pieces of our lives and not really us. 

I opened an account a(…)

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How Much Your Car Really Costs You?

Sometimes I think that my Honda Element costs me a fortune. I especially feel this way when I fill the car up with gas. Or when we take it for an oil change. Somehow we always end up with repairs, and, as I call it, despairs. However, I have to admit that our Honda is a good car. We don’t really spend much on it.

How much did you spend on your car last year? This year? Do you keep track? I don’t. I start worrying about the cost when we have problems, or have some repairs coming up. Other than(…)

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Life Insurance: Products, Needs, and Basic Understanding

How much financial planning do you do? My financial planning goes as far as making sure all the bills are paid, 401K deduction set in place, budget followed (to a certain extend), our savings stays untouched at least for a little while.

Unexpectedly, a new dimension was added to my financial planning routine. The other day one of my coworkers asked if Beaker and I have life insurance. I nodded, saying that we have life insurance through our work. According to my co-worker, life insurance that is provided through our company is not enough.

Aren’t you afraid that if something happened, you(…)

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