Thinking Out Loud #5: Big News!

Woo!  It’s Thursday and that means it’s time to get frisky and go crazy about anything that is on your  mind.  Massive excitement!  As always, thanks to Amanda for bringing us all together so we can get to know each other a little bit better outside of our normal blogging niches :)
Here we go!
  1. -2Is anyone playing along with March Madness this year?  Actually does anyone have a league going? I have a huge tip this year, and it’s that #1 seed Virginia is going to make it all the way.  They all have heart!
  2. Brain barf #2… I have super huge news to reveal!  As of last night, the boy and I are finally debt free!  We just used our bonuses to pay off the last $5,000 of student loans and we’re so happy.  When we moved to California 2.5 years ago, we had accumulated a bit under $30,000 of debt and it took a LOT of overtime and commitment to chasing dollars to finally reach this day. Now we’re free to save/spend on bigger goals like the trip to NZ I want to take, or buying a house with a yard like he wants.  Yay!
  3. Even though we made huge gains financially, we still have a huge unresolved issue… B and I don’t know how much we actually spend every month.  When we had tons of debt, acting frugally was second nature, but as the debt dwindled, our spending grew.  Mostly we just talk about tracking our money, then sweep the conversation topic under the rug.  One month I recall we spent ~$700 on food and bars (we had a lot of friends/family visiting) and I think B said we spent about $6K just this past February on all our “living”.  I worked about three full weeks of overtime last year and I hate to say that all that cash was funneled into a lifestyle that felt like “dying” and sad times. Boo
    So B submitted a challenge to me:

    starting on April 1st, we will absolutely, positively be tracking every single dollar we spend, and I’d love to invite you all to join in this challenge with us!

    Probably no budgeting goals, just a simple “know where your dollars are at” challenge. I think we’ll work our way out from there with some micro challenges and whatnot.  I’ll even make a page linking to all the people that are participating so we can see who else is doing it too!  Interested?  More details to come. :)

  4. Speaking of challenges, my minimalism/decluttering challenge has been going pretty well!  Progress is slow but I see it as more of a constant progression than a “spring cleaning” type activity.  I’m still tackling my closet, trying to get my books onto Amazon, and ridding myself of unused electronics, but it’s happening.  Check out some of the items I posted for sale on ThreadFlip, and I’m planning on donating anything really nice that doesn’t sell to a cool cause like Dress for Success.  One year, my sister donated all our old prom dresses to a cause that helped dress underprivileged teens, so I’m more than happy to give back to the community.
  5. Funny note, Beau has complimented me on several shirts I’ve worn recently… and all of them were ones I purchased at 50% off day at Goodwill.  Isn’t that weird?  I tried vintage hunting without luck when I lived back East, but if you’re ever going to try it, California has all the best stuff!
  6. I’ve mentioned previously that I’m intrigued by a Project 333 challenge, and this morning, I started writing down what my 33 closet staple items would be.  You know, I think I could do it!  There are a few staples that I don’t have that I would still like to get… but I know that’s not minimalist.  But if I can dream, these would be a pair of knee high black walking boots, a blazer, another statement necklace, and a versatile belt.   I’d like to lay out my pieces this weekend and see just how many looks I can create with my little capsule collection.
  7. Finally, I wanted to ask my blogging friends out there if anyone uses Pinterest and if you link your blog to your personal Pinterest boards or if you create an account just for your blog content?  I was thinking that I’d love to create a board that has the 33 closet items I consider essential, good paleo/vegan/grain-free recipes, etc. and am just wondering what option most bloggers prefer to do.  Is it weird or normal to link to your personal account?

Thanks, everyone, and have a great Thursday! :)

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  1. says

    Omigosh CONGRATS on being debt free! That’s such huge news, and SUCH a weight off the shoulders, eh? Travelling… buying a home… exciting things coming up :D

    For Pinterest, I never actually had a personal account, so my blog account is pretty much the only one I use. I don’t rely think there’s a rule when it comes to things like linking to your personal account, though, so it just comes down to personal preference.

  2. says

    Congratulations on paying off your student loans! That’s my dream life, right there.
    I don’t have a special blog pinterest board – I just put my photos where ever they fit in the boards I already have.

  3. says

    Yay so happy to hear you’re debt free!!! I don’t utilize Pinterest as much as I could or should. I’m sure that would probably take my blog to another level but I’ve been pretty lazy about it. Glad to hear the minimalism project is going well!

    • says

      Thanks, Tonya! I didn’t fully realize the power of PInterest until my Irish Soda Bread pin exploded with traffic, so I’ve been wondering what else I can do with it.

  4. says

    “Is it weird or normal to link to your personal account?”

    I’ve thought about this a lot prior to starting my blog.

    I say yes, you should link away! After all, you are the same person. Unless you have a definite reason to live double lives it’s far easier to mash everything together. Should this blog really take off, you’re real info. will become widespread anyway.

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