Month: November 2017

Our Focus on Gratitude

Our Focus on Gratitude

2017 has been a crazy ride for us, but we know we have so much to be grateful for! Today’s post is a reflection of our focus on gratitude.

What Northern Expenditure has done for us:

Sure, we don’t make money off this blog (I think we managed to break even this year!), but this blog has been amazing in so many ways. As we reflect on the things we’re grateful for, we obviously start with family, friends, better health, our home, our jobs, and the opportunities we have. Focusing specifically on this blog, we’re grateful for:

You – our readers

I know, I know. I’ll try not to get too sappy, but I LOVE it when you comment or send me an email about your own journey. It makes it all worth it.

This blogging community

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started the blog, but I certainly didn’t expect making so many good friends I would fly across the country just to hang out with them for a week in Texas (for FinCon). There’s also a handful of my closest blogger friends that have been so awesome. How sad I would be to miss out on those friendships if I hadn’t decided to jump in!

Strange opportunities

Through this blog, I have had the opportunity to dabble in SEO work, freelance writing, freelance research, and without the blog, I would not have found out about Merch by Amazon.

As we gather with our local friends tomorrow to eat turkey and Mr. T’s pies, know that I am thankful for this little corner of the internet that we have created and your part in that.

Happy Thanksgiving (US) friends – (international friends: please eat pie to celebrate anyway. There’s no bad day for pie.)

Why the Numbers Don't Matter Right Now

Why the Numbers Don’t Matter Right Now

If you are early on your journey like we are, I want to make the case that maybe the numbers don’t really matter right now.

Projecting is Harder Long-term

Just like the 10-day weather forecast is never right, the 10-year projections won’t be right either. I can tell you firsthand that projecting can be frustrating when you have so little in savings. Conservative estimates make early retirement look impossible.

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Plan Now for a Simpler Holiday

Plan Now for a Simpler Holiday

You cannot decide to have a relaxing holiday season when you’re already in the midst of it. You have to plan now for a simpler holiday. Here’s how:

Make Two Holiday Lists

As you prepare for Thanksgiving next week, I want you to make two lists:

1) Make a list of things you want to get out of the holiday season:

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Why I'm a Stay-at-Home Mom (and the financial implications)

Why I’m a Stay-at-Home Mom (and the financial implications)

One of the things that makes our journey to early retirement unique is that I’m a stay at home mom. Though I do have some income (I’ll get to that), I am not a major financial contributer to this journey. Yet I’m the one that manages all the finances and makes all the plans for Mr. T to retire early. Here’s a bit more of the story behind that.

How I chose to be a Stay-at-Home mom

Penny, our oldest, was born while I was in graduate school. Because of the timing, I had the opportunity to decide what I wanted to do before ever starting a corporate life. Because Mr. T and I were both in school, we balanced parenting duties equally and made sure our class schedules worked around each other so we could pass off the stroller on campus between our respective classes. After Mr. T graduated, we moved to the Northwest so he could find a job and I could finish my masters thesis. We didn’t count on our long stint with unemployment at the same time. I graduated just before Penny was 18 months old and the next month, Mr. T got a job in Alaska.

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FinCon 2017 Recap: What YOU Need to Hear

FinCon 2017 Recap: What YOU Need to Hear

I realize not everyone wants to know how to grow their blog or SEO, etc. (in fact, I didn’t go to most of those sessions either!). The two things I learned at FinCon that are important for everyone are:

1) The Importance of Community

I went to FinCon because that’s my tribe. Are all of them my people? No way! But there were 1700 people there and a subset of that are my friends. We relate. We communicate. We help each other out.

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October 2017 Plan Update

October 2017 Plan Update

October saw Alaska’s first snow (which then quickly melted and the fog rolled in for a perfect foggy, 40-degree Halloween). Also in October, we celebrated PFD day, Alaska day, and went to #FinCon17 (a non-Twitter recap coming Wednesday).

The Numbers:

Want to know how easy it is for us to write these every month? I literally just log into my Personal Capital and revel in all the numbers being in one place. Do you like checking numbers? Do you like graphics? Do you like playing with calculators like retirement calculators and how much your fees are costing you? Then, you should obviously use my affiliate link to Sign up here to help yours truly speed toward financial independence! (Also feel free to read my more in-depth review of Personal Capital.)

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