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Saving Money

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I have a thing for old houses. Neighbourhood streets lined with mature trees and an eclectic mix of architecture, colour, and details. That’s my jam. And it’s why our hopefully forever home is a one-hundred-year-old charmer. Living in an old home comes with its own set of challenges, and it’s not for everyone, but if you’re willing to take it on then, it can be a lot of fun. Since we moved in October, there have been never-ending weekend projects and a growing list of things we still want to do. That’s kind of the thing with home renovations. Once you get started, it’s tough to stop. This coming from the girl who’s gearing up to paint her bathroom for the second time because the colour isn’t quite right. Like the paint, we’ve made a few missteps along the way, but we’re learning lots about balancing our wants, our needs,…

Over the past few weeks you’ve likely been receiving all those annoying tax slips in your mailbox or inbox. If you’re like me, you’re probably still procrastinating over the whole actually doing your taxes part though. Luckily you’ve still got time. The deadline to have your taxes filed in Canada is April 30th, giving us a couple of extra weeks over our US counterparts. Filing my taxes is not my favourite thing in the world. Honestly, I’m not sure why. I always put it off and then when I do it I’m pleasantly surprised how little time it takes. My return is simple. I work one salaried job that gets me a T4 and then have RRSP contributions to factor in. All my investments are either in my RRSP or TFSA which means no slips for investment income. This year I’m planning to include my blog expenses. I’ve never done…

Confidence is a funny thing. When you have it, you feel like you can conquer anything, but when you don’t, you find yourself stuck in no man’s land. This happens with a lot of things. How many of you have ever not done something because you thought you’d be bad at it? My favourite (that I have used WAY too many times) is ‘I can’t go to ‘fill in the blank’ workout class. I need to get in better shape first!’ That’s my serious lack of confidence showing. Other examples might be ‘I can’t fix the leaky faucet, I’m not a plumber’ or ‘I think I’ll just stay home, I’m not going to know anyone.’ Sometimes we can be our own worst enemies. And confidence can play a huge role in how you handle your money as well. Not only in how you spend but also how you save and how you…

For as long as I can remember I’ve had a love for all things beauty. As soon as my mom gave me the go-ahead to wear make-up, I started spending my allowance on Lip Smackers and rainbow eye shadow palettes. My morning routine became me sitting in the bathroom sink testing out new looks. It was fun. I’ve grown up since then and am less about the trial and error and more about the tried and true, but I’m still a beauty fanatic at heart. It’s not a cheap hobby though, and as I’ve gotten older, my tastes have gotten more expensive. Instead of $1 nail polish, it’s $60 foundation. Ouch. Beauty products are always going to be a dent in my budget, but I have found a few ways to reduce my spending that I want to share. 1. Multi-Use Products Less is both cheaper and simpler when it…

It’s starting to feel a lot like Christmas! Anyone else there yet? The calendar clicking over to December is always a trigger, but we also got a huge dump of snow this past weekend, so it’s even looking festive outside. Edmonton winters are not always my favourite, but I do love a white Christmas and come on, how pretty goes this look! Another thing that puts me in the spirit is Christmas baking. I may hate cooking, but I sure do love me some Christmas baking. There’s measuring and shit, it’s way more methodical than ‘whipping together something for dinner.’ I am not someone who can whip up a meal. I need directions. And measurements. I also love giving baking away as gifts. It’s economical, customizable, and the perfect small gesture to pass on to co-workers, friends, and neighbours. This year I’ve got my eye on the following recipes to…

Have you ever felt like you’re running in circles when it comes to your finances? Whether you are paying off debt or building up your savings, you often hit a point when you wonder what the heck it’s all for. At the beginning of your journey, you’re inspired. You want to kick that debt or grow your net worth and are willing to do just about anything to get there. Then…the dreaded middle. Motivation starts to wane and the temptation of spending kicks into high gear. How come your friends get to have fun, and you’re stuck at home ‘saving money.’ Screw responsibility, I want a $16 craft cocktail…or four! How do you get past that? I want to share a few tricks I’ve used to keep on plugging away even when the money struggle is real. Remember The Plan Something triggered you to get on this path, don’t forget…

Do you ever feel overwhelmed when it comes to money? It’s ok to admit it, we all do. There’s so much information out there on what you should do, how you should do it, what you should have done a decade ago, and exactly how much money you should have in the bank. But at the end of the day, none of that matters if you don’t know where to start. Sometimes the best thing you can do is just stop. Stop looking for all the answers, stop being afraid to take the first step, stop feeling like you need to know everything when you already know enough. Today I want to motivate you to do one good thing for your finances. Whether your knowledge is beginner, intermediate or advanced, I’ve got your back. Let’s figure out that one improvement you can tackle right now, and then maybe another one…

I climbed on a bike just over two years ago for the first time since I was a kid. And you know what? It’s just like riding a bike 😉 Bad joke. But really, biking is super fun. I bought a cheap bike on sale at Canadian Tire and the bf, and I (he had an old bike) went on lots of leisurely bike rides. That was it though. We didn’t use our bikes as a form of transportation. They were strictly for fun. Why? Well, we live close to downtown, and my confidence level was basically zero when it came to biking in traffic. Bike Lanes Make a Difference The following year Edmonton made a big effort to improve the biking infrastructure in the city. Separated bike lanes were installed around much of downtown, and our neighbourhood was now connected. We could make it almost from our front door…

Before we get started, can we just talk about how perfect this stock photo is. Nothing says no regrets more than a woman double fisting rose. Thanks Unsplash for coming through big time on this one!  Last week I shared with you five money mistakes I’ve made in the past, and am trying not to repeat. This week I’m continuing the trend. This round, I’m highlighting five things I continue to spend on that other people may consider faux-pas. One of the best parts of personal finance is the fact that it’s personal. At the end of the day, it’s entirely your choice how you manage your finances. Sure, us bloggers like to drill down on what we consider best practices, but you’re the one that has to live your life. In that spirit, I’m going to share a few things I do that some of you might think are…

Money regret is something we all deal with. We’ve all made money mistakes that look pretty foolish in hindsight but it’s all part of the personal finance experience. I’ve made my fair share of bad decisions and I wanted to talk about a few of them today. I think talking about our mistakes brings more openness (and less awkwardness) to the money conversation, and can be a learning experience for those starting out. The thing with money mistakes is they are personal. Everyone has different opinions on what’s important and worthy of their hard earned dollars. Some people might think spending hundreds of dollars on a pair of shoes is frivolous, while someone else might wear those shoes to death and get more than their money’s worth. Narrowing down those things that are important to you is a learning process though. And often you’ll only realize it was a bad call…