Littlewoods at 1 month old!

March makes very clear that we had a baby! Our co-payment for Littlewoods’ birth as well as a few doctor’s appointments and her birth certificates are all reflected in March’s spending. While we frugalize nearly every aspect of child-rearing–from sourcing all used clothing, furniture, and baby accoutrements to creating simple, inexpensive holiday celebrations–there are some immutable costs of having a baby (such as buying copies of their birth certificates!). I love that most of Littlewoods’ stuff–her crib, her clothes, my infant carrier, etc–is on at least its fourth child.

Friends and family handed things down to us before Babywoods was born (and I bought some things at garage sales and thrift stores) and it lives on for Littlewoods! I’m already lining up friends interested in taking these hand-me-downs from us after Littlewoods is done with them.

I foisted off gave away a bunch of maternity clothes this past weekend to a friend who is pregnant and am delighted to continue the cycle of sharing and passing along maternity and baby things. Those maternity clothes have been through AT LEAST five different pregnancies–likely even more!–and I love that so many of us have embraced the philosophy of not buying new stuff and instead sharing and passing around our things. I also recently donated two huge bags of baby clothes that we no longer need to a kids clothing swap where I was able to find some bigger sizes for Babywoods for the coming months.

Kids cycle through toys, clothes, and stuff at such a rapid rate that it is absolutely not worth it to buy new. Looking around our house, there are precious few brand new things for our kids. We did have to buy a new infant carseat for Littlewoods as Babywoods’ hand-me-down seat was expired, but we found one at Wal-Mart for 50% off! Hooray! Still bummed we had to buy new, but I wasn’t able to find a hand-me-down that wasn’t expired. In addition to the obvious cost savings of hand-me-downs and used things, I also love the environmental benefit. By taking used things otherwise destined for a landfill, and then passing them along instead of throwing them out, we’re circumventing the embodied costs of buying new and keeping perfectly good baby things in circulation. It’s also true that sourcing things used eliminates the temptation to overanalyze every single purchase and become overwhelmed by choice (research shows that more choices do not make us happier!). I’ve written extensively on the topic of used stuff, and used baby/kid stuff in particular, and I’m reminded of the compounding savings of used things anytime we have a major life change and are able to avoid spending a ton of money.

Mrs. Frugalwoods’ Birthday!

Me and Littlewoods rocking our hand-me-down carrier and clothes

It’s true, I’m getting older. I turned 34 in March and Mr. FW took me out to lunch to celebrate! My fabulous in-laws were visiting and very kindly watched the girls for us while we had a lovely little date. We went to Worthy Burger, a local establishment, and feasted on organic grass-fed burgers (made with beef raised by our neighbors), truffle fries, and local craft beers (full disclosure: I had two. It’s my birthday and, for once, I’m not pregnant!!!!!). We then went in search of a new local coffee shop, only to discover it hasn’t had its grand opening yet. Continuing our hunt, we found a grocery store selling coffee and cupcakes with a little “cafe” (cafe being a charitable word for a table and chairs in their front entryway). Perfect!

Mr. FW and I don’t exchange gifts or cards for birthdays and holidays since we’d much rather put that money towards shared experiences–such as lunch and coffee out on the town. I also don’t need more stuff in my life as I’m trying (so hard) to be more minimalist in the things I own and surround myself with at home.

Less stuff = less stress (as I discovered during my manic pregnancy decluttering episode earlier this year… ). I know that gift giving is a source of expensive drama for many folks and so I have a number of resources that discuss various different frugal approaches to gift giving. Not giving gifts isn’t for everyone and there’s often a happy middle ground to reach between massive consumerism and a total absence of gifts.

Snow Mitigation

Babywoods climbing the snow steps Mr. FW shoveled for her on the side of our barn

Despite it being March, a month you might normally associate with–ahem–spring, we continue our snow-covered existence up here in Vermont and needed a few snow-related items. Chiefly, the snow scrapers for our cars keep breaking. All the time. I don’t think we’re particularly rough on them (doesn’t everyone joust with their snow scrapers?), yet they snap with regularity.

Tired of this ongoing snapping cycle, we decided to up the ante and spend a whopping $34.95 on this snow broom, which is purported to not break quite so easily. It hasn’t broken yet so we’ll see how it does over the long run. I hate replacing stuff all the time since it creates so much waste. I’d much rather use the same darn thing for many, many years and so I very much hope this snow broom is up to the task. Also, snow scrapers do not seem to be something you can find on the used market…

We also bought these new wiper blades for our Prius as the Bosch icon blades we bought last year shattered in the cold weather. Boo! Again, really wish this stuff would last longer. For stuff like wiper blades that typically can’t be sourced used, I’m a fan of trying to buy things that are not at the top of the market, but that aren’t the very cheapest either. I’d prefer to spend more in an effort to create less waste and hopefully avoid needing to continually replace them.

Credits Cards: How We Buy Everything

Our woods in the still-wintertime of March

Mr. Frugalwoods and I purchase everything we possibly can with credit cards for several reasons:

  1. It’s easier to track expenses. No guesswork over where that random $20 bill went; it all shows up in our monthly expense report from Personal Capital. This prompts me to spend less money because I KNOW I’m going to see every expense in detail at the end of each month.
  2. We get rewards. Who doesn’t like rewards? Credit card rewards are a simple way to get something for nothing. Through the cards we use, Mr. FW and I get cash back as well as hotel and airline points just for buying things we were going to buy anyway.
  3. We build our credit. Since Mr. FW and I don’t carry any debt other than our mortgages, having several credit cards open for many years (which are fully paid off every month) has greatly helped our credit scores. By the way, it’s a dirty, dirty myth that carrying a balance on your credit card helps your credit score–IT DOES NOT. Paying your cards off IN FULL every month and keeping them open for many years, however, does help your score.

If you’re interested in opening a credit card, I highly recommend using this site to search for a card that’ll best fit your needs. And if you’re interested in travel rewards cards specifically, check out this list curated by my friend Brad from Travel Miles 101. I respect Brad’s work in the travel rewards space and I trust his advice on which cards will reap the best benefits.

Huge caveat to credit card usage: you MUST pay your credit card bills in full every single month, with no exceptions. If you’re concerned about your ability to do this, or think that using credit cards might prompt you to spend more money, then credit cards are not for you–stick with using a debit card and/or cash. But if you have no problem paying that bill in full every month? I recommend you credit card away, my friend!

Personal Capital: How We Organize Our Expen$e$



Mr. Frugalwoods and I use Personal Capital to aggregate and consolidate our transactions from across all of our accounts. We then drop them into a spreadsheet to provide the below analysis for you fine people.

Tracking expenses is, in my opinion, the best way to get a handle on your finances. You absolutely, positively cannot make informed decisions about your money if you don’t know how you’re spending it. Sounds harsh, but without a holistic picture of how much you spend every month, there’s no way to set savings, debt repayment, or investment goals. It’s a frugal must, folks. No excuses.

Personal Capital (which is free to use) is a great way for us to systematize our financial overviews since it links all of our accounts together and provides a comprehensive picture of our net worth. If you’re not tracking your expenses in an organized fashion, give Personal Capital a try. Here’s a more detailed explanation of how I use Personal Capital for my expense tracking.

Where’s Your Money?

One of the easiest ways to optimize your money is to use a high-interest savings account. A high-interest savings account gives you money for nothing. With these accounts, interest works in YOUR favor (as opposed to the interest rates on debt, which work against you). Having money in a no (or low) interest savings account is a waste of resources–your money is just sitting there doing nothing. Don’t let your money be lazy! Make it work for you! And now, enjoy some explanatory math:

Let’s say you have $5,000 in a savings account that earns 0% interest. In a year’s time, your $5,000 will still be… $5,000.

Let’s say you instead put that $5,000 into an American Express Personal Savings account that–as of this writing–earns 1.70% in interest. In one year, your $5,000 will have increased to $5,085.67. That means you earned $85.67 just by having your money in a high-interest account.

And you didn’t have to do anything! I’m a big fan of earning money while doing nothing. I mean, is anybody not a fan of that? Apparently so, because anyone who uses a low (or no) interest savings account is NOT making money while doing nothing. Don’t be that person. Be the person who earns money while you sleep. Rack up the interest and prosper. More about high-interest savings accounts, as well as the ones I recommend, is here: The Best High Interest Rate Online Savings Accounts.

How To Read A Frugalwoods Expense Report

Babywoods, “but can I climb higher????”

Want to know how we manage the rest of our money? Look no further than Our Low Cost, No Fuss, DIY Money Management System. We also own a rental property in MA, which I discuss here.

Why do we save so much and spend so little? It’s all in service of our goal to reach financial independence and move to a homestead in the woods (which happened in May 2016).

For us, embracing frugality is a joyful, longterm choice. We prefer a simple life to one filled with consumerism and we spend only on the things that matter most to us. Our approach isn’t one of miserly deprivation; to the contrary, we live a luxuriously frugal existence.

If you’re interested in the other things I love, check out Frugalwoods Recommends.

A Note On Rural Life

Frosty porch view

Since we live on 66 acres in rural Vermont, our utilities and expenses are slightly different from traditional urban and suburban dwellings. We don’t pay for water, sewer, trash, or heating/cooling because we have a well, a septic system, our town doesn’t provide trash pick-up, we heat our home with wood we harvest ourselves from our land, and we don’t have air conditioning.

For more on our rural lifestyle, check out my series This Month On The Homestead as well as City vs. Country: Which Is Cheaper? The Ultimate Cost Of Living Showdown.

But Mrs. Frugalwoods, Don’t You Pay For X, Y, Or Even Z????

Wondering about common expenses that you don’t see listed below? Our August 2015 expense report has the answers you seek! Plus, as I explained here, we pay bills in full the month we receive them–that’s why you won’t see monthly payments for things like car insurance or property tax.

If you’re curious about how we handle charitable contributions, check out How We Donate To Charities Like Billionaires and also How We Make Meaningful And Tax Efficient Charitable Donations.

Alright you frugal money voyeurs, feast your eyes on every dollar we spent in March:

Item Amount Notes
VT Mortgage $1,392.86
Littlewoods’ birth! $975.00 Our co-payment for Littlewoods’ birth
Groceries $451.11
Preschool for Babywoods $240.00 Babywoods goes to preschool two mornings a week and loves it!
Household supplies $160.94 Exciting things like toilet paper, dental floss, shampoo, dish soap, and more!
Dentist $120.00 Dental x-rays for Mr. FW’s fangs
Internet $74.00 LOVE our high-speed fiber internet out here in the middle of nowhere
Gasoline for cars $66.53
Mrs. FW’s birthday lunch! $54.19  Burgers, fries, and beers oh my!
Local charity snowshoe-a-thon donation $50.00
Doctor visit co-pays $43.20
Utilities: Electricity $39.44
Snow Broom $34.95 We bought this snow broom to replace the cheap one we bought just last fall which broke.
Diesel for tractor $32.90
Wiper blades for Prius $32.10 Wiper blades for our Prius after the Bosch icon blades we bought last year broke.
Birth Certificates for Littlewoods $25.00
Cell phone through BOOM Mobile $19.99
Coffee filters $17.31
Parking at the airport to pick-up visiting family $3.00
Total: $3,832.52  
Minus mortgage: $2,439.66

How was your March?

P.S. This month’s Reader Suggestions question is up on the Frugalwoods Facebook page now! Head over there to respond!

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  1. Snow. snow. and more snow. Here in Minnesota, we’re awaiting another dumping this weekend, when it should be in the upper 50s! D’oh.

    I’m glad you got to enjoy your birthday. I remember how Mrs. Cubert let her hair down too after our twins were born. We still exchange birthday gifts, but they typically qualify as “useful” and aren’t extravagant.

  2. Wow, you’ve been busy! And a belated Happy Birthday!

    Our March was pretty good except for the snow and a few expenses related to a trip Mrs. Freaky Frugal and I are planning to the UK. Today it’s supposed to go over 80 degrees here in Philly! Go figure.

    We’re also giant fans of Rewards Credit Cards.

  3. Aww Littlewoods is so cute! Congratulations to you and your family!

    I just got a bag full of maternity clothes from my neighbour the other day. I offered to pay, but she declined. I was really touched by her gesture.

    Once Mr. FAF and I decide for sure we will have only two kids, I will give those clothes away to whoever needs them in the future. In fact, I’m wearing a hand-me-down top right now! 😀

    1. Since it doesn’t show up in the monthly expense report, I’m guessing it comes free through Mr. FW’s work.

      My own health insurance through work isn’t free, but it isn’t expensive. My husband’s insurance through work is free for the family. (HDHP + HSA). Of course anything beyond preventative (I’m look at YOU ear infections!) we cover out of pocket or from the HSA.

  4. Allow me to wish you a belated happy birthday! I heartily second the statement that babies outgrow things so quickly that it’s not worth it to buy toys / clothes / stuff new. Definitely been our experience as well. Kudos on obtaining so much used.

    Despite our best intentions, our recent child-rearing adventure has been far less minimalist than we initially planned. This is in large part due to the fact that giving material gifts is the primary love language of my wife’s family. We’ve had several conversations with them on this point and have attempted to offer experiences as gift-giving alternatives, but the frequent visits from Grandma are still often accompanied by a handful of new miscellaneous gifts / clothes / stuff.

    While we completely recognize that this “too much stuff!”is very much a “first world” problem which we’re blessed to have rather than the alternative of being in need of baby items, it’s been a source of stress for us all the same. Learning to pick our battles and roll with the punches, though. Grandmas are going to be Grandmas! On our part, it’s become a never-ending effort to purge and find ways to re-gift the unnecessary items to those who can better use them.

    As a believer in saving not only money but also the environment, I’m impressed with your low electric bill! I thought we were doing fairly well in that department (LED bulbs throughout house, smart power strips, etc.), but our average bill is still $20-25 higher than yours. My plans to replace our electric water heater with a tankless natural gas unit in near future should make up most of this difference.

    Beautiful pic from the front porch! Here’s to hoping your snow-broom makes it to at least NEXT winter 🙂

  5. Jinkies, I’m jealous of that deductible! I had surgery last month and had to pay $900 just to be seen – and I’m sure I’ll get a $3,000 bill soon (not an exaggeration unfortunately).

    March was an improved month for us. We did spend $900 on Southwest Airlines discounted gift cards (to book upcoming travel at a discount) and $600 on an A/C repair. Otherwise I’m pleased we were able to cut our food expenses pretty significantly, all while eating organic meat and produce. 🙂

    I’m hoping April will be an even better month, but with hubby switching jobs next week, we’ll see!

  6. I love the environmentally friendly aspect of reusing items. It’s kind of sad that the trend to find reusable things is a “new thing.” How wasteful and spoiled our culture has become! Our grandparents did this out of necessity and did just fine. Now, we all have the chance to save money and prevent waste by buying used and taking advantage of items that aren’t one-time-use. What’s better for many of us is that we can benefit by saving the difference. I’m really glad movements like minimalism, zero-waste and small living are bringing us all back to intentional living again.

  7. I read your book early in March (good info within a good read) and just finished Soulful Simplicity. Now is time to implement more frugality and finally empty our closets with a fresh approach. I applaud you two for getting your “act together” so early in life. You will be able to teach your children well and enjoy your life. Being 64, so many things are ingrained – luckily being careful with our spending has been a theme but still struggle with “when I want something, I want it now”. Getting better…

  8. I did some skiing up in Vermont in March and that snow you’re talking about made it wonderful. I was up north at Smugglers and Sugarbush so I think you ended up with even more snow then they did. Skiing may be the least frugal hobby out there. I don’t really care though. I really love it and think it’s super important to spend on the stuff that makes you the happiest. I do my best to plan ahead and keep the costs in check though.

    Nice job keeping your costs under control even with the new snow brush. The birth of our son last year cost much more than your copay.

  9. Love all of your spending avoidances and practical ways to be economically independent! Just a reminder to readers, however – baby items such as cribs and car seats should not be recycled year after year – there exist safety issues with pre-used cribs and car sears and manufacturers are required to improve safety features . A good deal is a good deal as long as it is safe for babies!

  10. Mostly for other readers, an FYI. If you like second hand Children’s clothes but don’t want to sort through at a thrift shop, try You can put in filters for the object you’re looking for, the size(s), the brand(s) and the price range. And….” there’s an app for that”😊

  11. Oh my god, do I NOT miss those VT winters! Here in RI, it feels plenty long enough. BUT…. here is the good news…. My husband purchased the snow broom when he was doing his residency at UVM in the early 90s (!!) and we still have it and it still works great all these years later. 😀

    1. I am so glad to hear that the snow broom is still going strong! Fingers crossed ours lasts that long too 🙂

  12. Congratulations again! We had our son in early February (3 years ago) which meant we got to max out both year deductibles, plus I had to transfer from the birth center to the hospital after 47 hours of labor, so we got the privilege to pay fully for both places 😉

    And happy birthday!

  13. I keep getting bummed that we keep getting random snow storms over here, but then I’ll check out your Instagram feed and think, “Eh, I guess we don’t have it so bad.” Ha ha. The snow will melt for us all eventually, though!

    I’m having a baby too in a few months (also my second), and it’s amazing how much less stress there is this time around because we already have everything we need from our first! I’m a little nervous to see the final hospital bill (it won’t be as low as your co-pay, for sure!), but we set aside money from our tax return towards that, so hopefully it won’t be too astronomically high (our first kid cost us $6000 out of pocket…and I didn’t even get an epidural!).

  14. What an adorable picture of Littlewoods! She and Babywoods are going to be quite the team, I can tell.
    That snow looks great to me, but then, we don’t get snow here, except freak little flurries once a decade or so. If I had to see snow all winter, I’d be tired of it, too. Shall I send you some pictures of plants and people wilting in the high heat in Florida’s October, to make you feel better? 🙂
    I’m jealous of your insurance, too. Thirty-two years ago, we had to pay $1500 after insurance for our daughter’s birth, and it was a normal birth, getting us out of the hospital in 48 hours.
    I was a little down that our monthly expenses seemed so high compared to yours, until I realized my budget included all kinds of saving up for yearly and bi-yearly bills, Christmas, taxes, etc. Once I removed those, I saw we weren’t doing so badly on just plain spending, but there’s room for improvement. That’s why I keep reading blogs like these – they keep me motivated.
    Boo on the wipers and snow broom. That makes me so frustrated when things like that happen.

  15. New reader here, recommended by my enthusiastic older daughter. Noting your co-pay for Littlewoods, I remembered when my second daughter was born in 1974. Multi-purpose credit cards were new then (we had a MasterCard), and when I checked out of the hospital, I used it. I remember saying to the clerk, “I can’t believe I just had a baby and I’m saying ‘Charge it, please.'” Thanks SOOOO much for these blog posts! I read every one avidly, and I’m learning so much!

  16. Happy Birthday! What a bang up year so far, birthing a child and a book. 🙂 Wishing you another year of fabulous and frugal.

  17. The Snow-Showathon sounds so interesting! Are you or Mr. Frugalwoods participating?

    March for me was expensive vet bills and property tax. A pretty expensive month but the new (more expensive) prescription food will hopefully prevent further issues for my cat. If another emergency issue happens though, I will go to a different emergency vet that isn’t as expensive and about the same distance from me. I just wasn’t able to research that at 5:00 am on a Sunday. I am also appealing my property value with the state for next tax year. So while not a great month financially, I am taking steps to improve it going forward.

  18. Snow! We are expecting more this week-end!!!:(
    My March was a little more expensive, I had to pay for my son’s track fees and meet with a lawyer about my pending lay off (over $300 for 50 minutes!) and also went skiing with my youngest for one day (not cheap).
    All other expenses are now under control:)
    congrats again on your new baby

  19. It is easy to forget how good my insurance is through my work. We paid $0.00 out of pocket for the birth of our son. It was a huge blessing to know we didn’t need to pay money for that since we did have other purchases to take care of, like the birth certificates.

  20. Thinking I was ahead of the curve – I dare to say I’m more frugal than my god daughter – illness can really take you for a loop. I have excellent insurance and Medicare. I’ve never been in a hospital except to have babies. Then, out of the blue, my doc discovered a congenital heart defect that is only showing up now. Won’t go into all the boring details but it’s going to cost – no matter how careful I’ve been – it’s going to cost. And, so now, I try to figure what else I can do. I certainly do not want to take out a second mortgage and even though I’m still working (pastor and teach) I’m not sure I’m going to come out of this intact financially. Just something to think about – healthcare is NOT cheap and you may think you’re covered – read the fine print!

  21. Happy belated birthday! That’s so great that she loves daycare. We are slowly trying to figure out what class or program we want to put our son in next school year. Thinking about the cost is not exciting, but everything else is!

  22. Congratulations on your sweet Littlewoods…precious. Have you considered a reusable coffee filter to eliminate the cost and trash of the paper ones? I got one years ago and use it every day…doesn’t show any signs of giving up the ghost.

  23. This may be a really silly question, but how does a car seat expire? It’s a shame, especially if it hasn’t been in any accidents, to not be able to reuse it, isn’t it.

    1. I read that the exposure to heat and cold can affect the plastic and warp it after 5 years. Of course, it’s the people selling them who make this claim…

  24. Frugal hack: We have a pair of those snow brooms that we got for free because Margie was working in the auto industry and there were a bunch of extras in her office. They use them on the car lots. As for snapping ice scrapers, we have short ones with brass blades. They cost a few bucks on Amazon and last forever.

    And speaking of wiper blades, uh oh, I just ordered a Bosch icon blade! Hopefully it lasts.

    1. Yes, we do! And I am SO REMISS and delayed in writing a post about them. That’s what having a baby will do to you! I swear I will get that post written soon 🙂

  25. Happy Birthday! We share a birthday month, I turned 30 and we visited my favorite brewery for a few pints and got to bring our own hummus, veggies, and chips snack!
    Congrats again on Littlewoods (and no longer being pregnant)!

  26. Happy birthday!
    Littlewoods is absolutely adorable!

    We have beautiful weather here in western Carolina. Monday, however, will bring snow again!

  27. Mid April and we’re Still looking at snow here in Massachusetts. We don’t have problems with our snow scrapers but we lose at least one shovel every winter. May have to invest in something more heavy duty if these winters continue to throw this much snow at us.

  28. In regard to wiper blades, they generally need to be replaced 1-2 times a year. In extreme temps and/or vehicle outside all the time, they may only last 3 months. If the vehicle is garaged, they may last 2 years or more depending on use. Actual use longevity can vary depending on use, conditions, care, and quality. It is what it is.

    1. We live in Michigan with two of our cars out all year. We rarely replace blades. Maybe every 5 years or so. If blades start to “skip”areas on your windshield, you can bend them, or you can run some fine-gauge sand paper across the blades to renew the edge. There are some good you-tube tutorials on this.

  29. I always enjoy hearing all about your life, so beautifully written, and I enjoy reading and learning more about frugality. I am older, retired, and my needs are simple. Congratulations on your little family. I do enjoy the photographs you post as they are growing up. Best wishes from Australia.

  30. What a cute baby! Congrats to you, Mr. Frugalwoods, and big sister Babywoods! This is the first time I’ve left a reply on your site, although I’ve been reading it for a while now. I love checking in for new posts, as I find them very informative, uplifting, and just a tad autobiographical. It’s nice to see the pics of your family enjoying the frugal lifestyle!

    All the best,


  31. Next time you need a coffee maker, consider a Cuisinart. We’ve had our coffee maker for about 10 years now (where our previous coffee makers lasted only a year to only months). It has a mesh basket so you don’t need filters.

  32. My wife and myself finished your new book. We enjoyed it and are sending a copy through Amozon to our son and daughter in law in New Zealand! Great stuff!!

  33. Happy birthday dear Mrs Frugalwood ! I live far, far from your frozen Vermont (Britanny, France) and I’m curious about your trash situation. Since your town doesn’t provide trash pick-up, how do you take care of it ? Best wishes from Brest 😊

    1. Thank you! We take our trash and recycling to a designated transfer station once a week. And we buy special trash bags provided by the town (those are listed in a previous expense report).

  34. congrats on Littlewoods and Happy Birthday! I too am a fan of hand-me-down kids stuff. 80% of what we used for both of my kids during baby/toddler years was hand-me-down, and we still either use quite a bit of secondhand stuff, and also have multiple other families who now receive our hand-me-downs! We also do very little gift-giving in our household. Instead we spend money on things like private school for the kids, dance lessons, and music lessons—valuing experience and knowledge over stuff.

  35. We had a pretty pricey March, but it was because we were on vacation! We visited Texas and had a great time. There was also no snow, which was a bonus!

    Congrats on a nice March!

  36. I have that same snow broom. My dad bought both my sister and I them at least 6-7 years back as a Christmas gift. Mine is still working well today and I use it every storm (though where I live in MA likely get’s way less snow than you guys up in Vermont)

  37. Awesome article. Recently read your book very thought-provoking thanks for all the great content. Makes me realise I’m spending a lot of money especially when compared to the FWs!! Thx again, Jason.

  38. Congratulations on the birth of your baby! I just got your book from the library and have almost finished it in 2 days (and as a homeschool mom of 3 kids, this is fast for me).

    I wanted to share a tip with you – I noticed you have a line item for coffee filters in your budget. We recently switched to a stand-alone metal cone filter and it works great – no paper filters needed. We paid $14 for it on Amazon, I’ve noticed the price is $25 right now so if you are interested, I’d wait for it to drop back down. 🙂

  39. Wow this is great insight, thanks for sharing! I love getting different peoples perspectives on how monthly spending is organized. First time to your website, and i’ll definitely be back 🙂

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