June was the month of post-vaccination celebration! And yes, I realize it’s almost August and I’m just now writing about June, but we’ve been a tad busy, in a wonderful way.

My new haircut!!! Oh and my love too!

All manner of family visited in June (and July), we hosted, we dined, we went out to restaurants (!!!!). It was glorious. After the 15-month drought of isolation, which involved not seeing any of our family members, this summer is a warm balm of reconnection and celebration.

I have to tell you that we didn’t think about our spending one single time during this month-long bacchanal. One of the most profound gifts of financial independence–and frugality–is the ability to have months like this. The freedom to–occassionally, not every month–loose the financial reins. The key for me is to keep these wild spending sprees rare enough that they’re true treats, but often enough that I don’t feel deprived in my daily life. That balance is different for everyone, but I think options and freedom are the universal benefits of living a financially conscious life.

Aside from our extensive dining out, brewery visiting, hosting, and groceries for guests, there were a few notable expenses:

Advertiser Disclosure: Frugalwoods partners with CardRatings for coverage of credit card products. Frugalwoods and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers at no extra cost to you. Here’s a boring (but important) explanation of how Frugalwoods makes money. The credit card links in this post are affiliate links.

Car Seats

My fabulous in-laws are here for the summer and so we bought two car seats for their car so that we don’t have to swap seats between our car and theirs. Worth every penny to avoid continual hassle.

Chicken Coop

The chicken coop is now complete! June saw several more materials-related purchases of lumber, paint and hardware.

A Haircut

Chickens in doll carriers. What more can I say?

Believe it or not, I got a haircut. A real, live haircut in an actual salon by an actual professional. Longtime readers know my husband’s been my hairdresser for the last seven years, but I broke that streak last month with my first official haircut.

As you saw above, I went pixie!!! You all might remember my short v. long hair dilemma of a few years back and I finally pulled the trigger and got it chopped. I LOVE IT. It’s short, it’s bouncy, it takes zero work. I hop out of the shower, put in conditioner, comb it, add some scrunching gel and…. that’s it!!!! My hair routine is now almost as fast as Mr. Frugalwoods’! Almost.

I’m not yet sure if I’ll try to maintain the pixie myself or go back to my hair lady. I really liked my hair lady and she did an awesome job. Right now, I’m waiting to see how quickly my hair grows and how soon I’ll need a trim. I had her cut it really, really short so that I have a lot of growing room.

I don’t envision myself ever, ever having long hair again, but I’m willing to let the pixie grow shaggy before chopping it super duper short again. I’m almost two months post-cut and I still like how it looks, so TBD how often it’ll need a trim.

I’m also considering buzzing it and then letting that grow out. TBD! Folks with super short hair–how do you keep it short? As a lifelong long-haired, I need your advice!

Personal Capital: How We Organize Our Expen$e$

I use a free online service called Personal Capital to keep track of our money: our spending, our net worth, our investments, our retirement–everything!

My stylist assisting me with the latest trend: blue eyeshadow on the upper chestal region

Tracking expenses is one of the best–and easiest–ways 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 or how much you have. If you’d like to know more about how Personal Capital works, check out my full write-up.

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 must, folks. No excuses. Personal Capital (which is free to use) is a great way for me 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, you might consider trying Personal CapitalHere’s a more detailed explanation of how I use Personal Capital (note: these Personal Capital links are affiliate links). 

Credits Cards: How We Buy Everything

We buy everything we can with credit cards because:

  1. It’s easier to track expenses. No guesswork over where a random $20 bill went; it all shows up in our monthly expense report from Personal Capital. I spend less money because I KNOW I’m going to see every expense listed at the end of each month. .
  2. We get 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 stuff we were going to buy anyway.
  3. We build our credit. Since we don’t have any debt, having several credit cards open for many years helps our credit scores. It’s a 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 does help your score.

For more on my credit card strategy, check out:

If you want a simple cash back credit card, here are some good options that don’t have annual fees:

Littlewoods + chicken little

1) Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers a hierarchy of cash back percentages:

  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%)
  • 2% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores
  • 1% Cash Back on other purchases
  • Earn 20% back on Amazon.com purchases in the first 6 months of card membership (up to $150 back)
  • Earn $100 back if you spend $2,000 within the first 6 months of card membership

2) Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card:

  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases
  • Earn $200 if you spend $500 or more in purchases within the first three months of card membership

3) Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card:

  • 3% cash back on dining and entertainment
  • 2% at grocery stores
  • 1% on all other purchases
  • Cash back won’t expire for the life of the account; no limit to how much you can earn
  • Get $200 if you spend $500 on purchases within the first three months from account opening

4) Chase Freedom Unlimited:

  • 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase
  • 3% on dining at restaurants and drugstores
  • 1.5% on all other purchases
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back, rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
  • Earn $200 if you spend $500 in your first 3 months from account opening

If you’re interested in travel rewards, a lot of people love the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

The best way to find a credit card that’ll work for you is to search for it yourself; I have a guide to help you do just that: The Best Credit Cards (and Credit Card Rewards)!

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 using credit cards might prompt you to spend more, stick with a debit card or cash. But if you have no problem paying that bill in full every month? I recommend you credit card away, my friend! (note: the credit card links are affiliate links).

Cash Back Earned This Month: $81.51

Peonies from my garden

The silver lining to our spending is our cash back credit card. We earn 2% cash back on every purchase made with our Fidelity Rewards Visa and this month, we spent $4,075.52 on that card, which netted us $81.51.

Not a lot of money perhaps, but it’s money we earned for buying stuff we were going to buy anyway! This is why I love cash back credit card rewards–they’re the simplest way to earn something for nothing.

To see how this adds up over the course of a year, check out this post: The Easiest $486 I’ve Ever Made: How To Use Cash Back Credit Cards To Your Advantage.

Where’s Your Money?

Another easy way to optimize your money is to use a high-interest savings account. 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 0.40% in interest. In one year, your $5,000 will have increased to $5,020. That means you earned $20 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 sleeping. More about high-interest savings accounts, as well as the ones I recommend, here: The Best High Interest Rate Online Savings Accounts.

Yes, We Only Paid $31.90 for Cell Phone Service (for two phones)

Kidwoods cradling a chicken

Our cell phone service line item is not a typ0 (although that certainly is). We really and truly only paid $31.90 for both of our phones (that’s $15.95 per person for those of you into division). How is such trickery possible?!? We use the MVNO Ting (affiliate link).

What’s an MVNO? Glad you asked because I was going to tell you anyway: It’s a cell phone service re-seller.

MVNOs are the TJ Maxx of the cell phone service world–it’s the same service, but A LOT cheaper. If you’re not using an MVNO, switching to one is an easy, slam-dunk, do-it-right-away way to save money every single month of every single year forever and ever amen. More here: How to Save Money on Your Cell Phone Bill with an MVNO: I Pay $12 a Month*

*the amount we pay fluctuates every month because it’s calibrated to what we use. Imagine that! We only pay for what we use! Will wonders ever cease.

Expense Report FAQs

  • Want to know how we manage the rest of our money? Check out How We Manage Our Money: Behind The Scenes of The Frugalwoods Family Accounts
  • Don’t you have a rental property? Yes! We own a rental property (also known as our first home) in Cambridge, MA, which I discuss here.
  • More chicken love

    Why do I share our expenses? To give you a sense of how we spend our money in a values-based manner. Your spending will differ from ours and there’s no “one right way” to spend and no “perfect” budget.

  • Are we the most frugal frugal people on earth? Absolutely not! My hope is that by being transparent about our spending, you might gain insights into your own spending and be inspired to take proactive control of your money.
  • Wondering where to start with managing your money? Take my free, 31-day Uber Frugal Month Challenge. If you’re interested in other things I love, check out Frugalwoods Recommends.
  • Why don’t you buy everything locally? We do our best to support our local community and buy as much of our food as possible directly from our farmer neighbors. Our town doesn’t have any stores, so we rely on online ordering and big box stores for necessities. The closest stores are 45 minutes away and Mr. FW goes once a month to stock up on what we can’t get from our neighbors or online.

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

Wondering about common expenses you don’t see listed below?

If you’re wondering about anything else, feel free to ask in the comments section!

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

Item Amount Notes
Groceries $887.81 For us and our house guests! Money well spent.
Hotel stay! $627.35 Pre-payment for a hotel for our 13th wedding anniversary kid-free trip (thank you to my in-laws for keeping the kids!)
Restaurants $494.77 Woohoo!!! Party time, excellent.
Visits to breweries, distilleries plus gifts and gift cards for family and guests $396.05 More excellent party time.
Car seats $312.05 Two car seats for my in-laws’ car
TSA pre-check renewal $170.00 Decided to renew our TSA pre-check. Seems worth it–we’ve liked having it the last five years.
Chicken coop supplies $161.16 Lumber and hardware for Mr. FW to finish building the chicken coop
Household supplies $152.25 The thrilling things of life: laundry detergent, toilet paper, dishwasher soap, vitamins, craft supplies for the kids, etc etc etc…
Gas for cars $137.66 Had to drive a lot to all those restaurants and breweries!
Seven local whole chickens (frozen) $127.00 From a neighbor’s farm, to roast
Restaurant gift card gift for family $100.00
DMV $76.00 Truck registration renewal
My haircut + tax and tip $74.40
Internet $72.00
Chicken feed and shavings $70.71
Summer clothes for Mr. FW $64.79 Some new shorts, shoes and shirts for Mr. FW for the summer
Truckload of 50/50 dirt compost $64.45 To top off our raised bed garden
Wine shipping stewardship club from wine.com $51.94 This is my wine.com free shipping membership, which is SO WORTH IT. I buy wine for all of my family members for holidays and birthdays and, since none of them live nearby, I have to ship it to them.

This annual expense entitles me to free shipping for all of my purchases, which pays for itself in roughly two orders.

Second set of swimsuits $47.63 I bought a second set of swimsuits for the kids to keep at my in-laws house. I love these full-body SPF suits for Littlewoods and for Kidwoods (affiliate link).
Noise machine $46.98 A noise machine for the kids’ bedroom at my in-laws’ house (can you tell I do not like carting things back and forth?). I now own four of these noise machines and I love them (affiliate link).
Tires $36.49 Mount and balance a new car tire, plus a new tube for the lawnmower’s tire
Cell phone service for two phones $31.90 This is so cheap because we use an MVNO called Ting (affiliate link).MVNOs resell wireless service at discounted rates (but it’s the same service). MVNOs are the TJ Maxx of cell phone service.

If you’re not using an MVNOcheck out this post to see if you can make the switch. The savings are tremendous.

Utilities: Electricity $24.24 We have solar (which I detail here); this is our monthly base price for remaining grid tied.
Carpenter’s Pencils $19.27 My carpenter is tired of losing his pencils, so we bought this pack of 72 carpenter’s pencils (affiliate link).
Hand cream for me $15.89 My favorite dry hand combat tool: O’Keefe’s Hand Cream (affiliate link).
Coffee shop! $11.15 Decadent, lovely visits to coffee shops!
Parking in the city $3.35 Parking meter
Total: $4,277.29

How was your June?

Advertiser Disclosure: Frugalwoods partners with CardRatings for coverage of credit card products. Frugalwoods and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers at no extra cost to you.

Editorial Disclosure: Opinions, reviews, analyses and recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.

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  1. I have short hair and cut it myself, have for years. My daughter has short hair which I cut, and for my two sons. We have haircut parties :).
    For you, if there’s someone else to do the back you’re golden. You tube, here you come!

  2. Here’s a frugal question- will you be selling the car seats when your in laws leave? If so I would be interested!

    1. Hahah, I think we’ll be hanging on to them for awhile–my in-laws plan to be here every summer (yippee!!!!!!)

      1. Do you have plans to build a tiny house for them? I feel like that would add value to your homestead. And you could rent it out as an airbnb financial retreat/farm experience for additional income! I would come and book a stay!

    2. I really enjoy reading these blogs and I don’t mean to be critical, but…

      Maybe I need to sit back and read this for the entertainment value, but what is spent on restaurants, breweries, haircuts, and neighbor’s chickens (at over $18 each!!!) just doesn’t seem to be very frugal to me.

      I simply do not have the income to spend over 4 grand on non housing expenses, and so I do have to be frugal, I just have no other option! And so restaurant meals are rare and a treat, I cut my own hair, I buy whole chickens when on sale and freeze them, etc.

      1. As a long term Frugalwoods reader I can say frugality and conscious spending is very much at the heart of this blog. They were very frugal for years which enabled them to retire super young. They are still frugal (this was her first hair cut in seven years!) but she has a family now and naturally wants to enjoy and live life. And that means spending money on things that are not exactly essential sometimes. What I see is a financially independent family enjoying their summer whilst supporting their neighbors ($18 chickens) and being generous to visiting family members.

    1. Wow that is definitely short, and over $70 for a haircut? My husband is the family barber and stylist, my teen boys get their haircuts every three weeks and I take a seat every couple months, and he trims my long hair. He has gotten a lot of practice giving my boys their haircuts with. Combination of the clippers with different attachments, scissors over comb cutting and being their hair is thick, he has done clippers over comb cutting. Home haircuts do not need to be just buzz cuts for the guys. Last summer when the shops were closed, a friend of mine asked hubby for a haircut as her overgrown pixie had become a mullet. She liked the haircut my older son has and wanted her hair cut short like his. I was comfortable with him doing it because he always does a great job for my boys. Well he did the whole haircut with the clippers with different attachments and clippers over the comb cutting on the top and to blend the sides and back, plus he used the peanut clippers on her neckline. She was quite pleased with her haircut, as was her husband that likes short hair, and the fact that it was free, versus the $45 she usually paid for her haircuts. She is close friends with her stylist, so she has gone back to her, and her stylist had commented that she really liked the haircut, but felt slighted that she had cheated on her.
      Cutting short hair is definitely more difficult than trimming long hair, so I suggest you have Mr FW check out some youtube videos on doing short hair before you turn him loose on your hair, or you just might just end up getting that buzz cut.

  3. Adorable cut! Consider giving that wonderful hair lady your continued business as she cannot work online/remotely and you live in a small town. She will appreciate it!

  4. Your hair is so cute!! I’ve , worn mine short for years–I need a trim, freshen up about every 6 weeks. Treasure your stylist– you have great hair, but she also did a great job!

  5. I’ve been giving myself buzz cuts since the start of the pandemic. I miss having just a little more length in the front/on top that I can dye purple, but the ease of at-home buzz cuts is wonderful.

  6. I’ve had short pixies several times, and have mostly maintained them myself (well, you might need someone else to do the finishing touches at the back), especially in the growing out period. It’s trial and error while getting to know your hair and the shape of your head. From cutting my own and my kids’ hair, I would say curly hair is more forgiving of DIY cuts (imperfections are less noticeable). If your hair is very straight, you might want the professionals. I’ve never actually been brave enough to use a razor, though I’ve wondered if that would be a revolutionary time savings. Looks cute on you.

  7. Love your short hair! Those kids swimsuits are our favorite as well. Sounds like an excellent month of rejuvenation.

  8. There was so much joy in this post- both in your write-up and in your expenses. Every dollar was truly a dollar well spent making memories that you all can treasure. Thank you for sharing your little piece of joy!

  9. * I went to a pixie from shoulder-length hair in 2013 and I have not looked back. It is easy and versatile and I have learned to trim it myself by watching videos of people with hairstyles that I really liked. There are tons of them on YouTube. A pixie is a classic hairstyle, I trim mine every three to four weeks and have learned new techniques along the way. Sometimes I let the length on top grow out, at other times I trim it back. I have professional hair cutting scissors, and a hair trimmer ( all on Amazon). I learned to use it recently.. I get compliments on my hair a lot but I usually refiran from letting everyone know I cut it myself as I am afraid they may look for the flaws—LOL. I just say “thank you” and move on.

  10. Frugality is not just about saving and avoiding unneeded spending, but also about spending wisely on what gives you joy, and supporting others as you see fit.
    I vote that you continue getting haircuts from your hair lady. The cut looks great, grows out well, and you support the life of the excellent artisan hair lady.
    My wife and I got $20 haircuts for years at a local Aveda school; some great, some ok, some not great. The school got weird, so we both visited the hair lady of a friend who gave great looking cuts.
    We still see our hair lady after several years, at the cost of $75 total for each cut, $0.60 more than you, ha! The cuts grow out great, so we go every 5-6 weeks and can go longer if needed. This is one of our biggest regular expenses. But in addition to a great cut by a real hair artist, we get the pleasure of supporting our hair lady’s life; she owns a modest house and loves to travel, and our haircuts help her live that best life that she loves.
    So get those great haircuts, and release some of your well saved money to help someone whose work you like. Double win!

  11. I’ve got a pixie cut, quite a bit shorter than yours in that pic. I get it cut every 9 weeks but in between to keep it tidy I get my partner to shave my neck and just trim the very back with clippers to keep the mullet look at a minimum, or the back goes really fluffy around my collar, sticks up and annoys me.
    He did cut it for me in the first lockdown, clippering a short back and sides on the longest setting, it was ok, probably worth a go and see if you like it.

  12. I love your pixie cut and it looks fabulous!!! It makes me consider the same for myself! I had a colleague who buzzed her hair (and donated locks) and she looked really good. I’m not sure if I am that brave though! I also love all the chicken love pictures. The public health nurse in me feels compelled to urge careful hand washing after chicken cradling (and no smooching…). Salmonella carriage is common in even healthy chickens (sadly). They are so much fun though.

  13. I have a self-maintained pixie cut and it’s super easy. I bought a clipper set that comes with a one-inch guard and I use that on the sides and back. The guard makes it so that you don’t even have to see what you’re doing! It’ll all come out even. Or just get your husband to do that part, with the clippers.
    Then I cut the top (which I like a bit longer) myself with the clippers and with scissors. But you could of course just use the inch guard all over.

    I love the idea of supporting your local hairstylist too. Maybe alternate between the two?

  14. Love the haircut! I had a pixie for years, and I highly recommend going to a barber shop for upkeep. So much cheaper to get a “men’s haircut”

  15. I’ve had short hair for 30+ years which needs cutting every six weeks. I always book my next appointment as I’m settling up but I stretch it out for seven weeks. Makes me feel a bit frugal and I only have to get through one week of ’long’ hair knowing my appointment is coming up soon.

  16. I’m sure you’ll enjoy the short hair, though a friend of mine who lives in Minnesota, and always had short hair, said that having hair on the back of your neck in the winter was a good idea. I have very curly, and as I’ve aged, wiry hair. My joke about having it short is that after a cut, for two weeks it is too short, for two weeks it is just right, and after that, of course, it is too long!

  17. I had a pixie once and liked it. I eventually grew it out because I have a cowlick in the front and it was taking me too long to do the bangs. Now I have a short bob that is wash and wear. I love easy hair!

  18. The short hair looks good!! My younger SIL went like that with her hair ages ago. Really long, then had about half cut off the bottom for a while but the last couple of decades, it’s been roughly shoulder length. Short and easy to handle but long enough to wear up for special occasions like weddings. I keep mine long. I’ve had it short in my younger days but it isn’t a good look for me.
    Things are slowly opening up around here so I’m looking forward to seeing my sisters-in-law more and hopefully my great nephew soon before he gets too big!! He was born last December and I’ve only seen pictures so far. Enjoy your family time!!!

  19. The hair! Short hair is wonderful but does take more maintenance cuts (but you save money on products and your hair stays healthier because the damage is constantly cut off). Some salons offer a free touch up in between cuts. To make it last longer, consider going a little longer in front and on top and even shorter in the back…think Keira Knightly in Domino-ish. As the front grows out it just continues to look cute, and the the back can take its time. When it gets too shaggy, go get it cut. For me this is every 6-7 weeks.

  20. I LOVE short hair, but 2+ years ago I started to grow mine out to save money after wearing it short for 25 years. I needed a cut every 4-5 weeks due to very thick, curly hair, and needed skilled stylists to work their magic. I now get it cut every 3 months. I still prefer short hair, but this experience has saved me tons of money! (P.S. I do cut my sons’ hair at home. Frugal mamas inspired me to start that, too. 👍🏻🙂)

  21. Your haircut is great! I have a very similar shirt style. It is so easy. I hate spending time on my hair. I have thick hair and I got hair thinning scissors to take the weight out of the sides and top a little myself in between haircuts. That helps a lot.

  22. I went from a pixie to longer hair over the Covid season. And, at 67 I was surprised I enjoyed having it long again. Never expected that. There is likely another pixie in my future, but not for awhile.

  23. I grow my hair for 2-3 years and donate then shave my head. It’s one continual process and makes me feel good about giving back.

  24. Love that you acknowledge it is ok to splurge occasionally. We have been frugal for years which allowed us to retire early. We splurge now and then on things that bring us joy and have no guilt.

  25. The hair cut looks great and it sounds like the summer has been a blast. I look forward to your harvesting time and seeing the chickens settled in at home. Any more thoughts on a dog or two?

    We helped with our grandchild as a baby a lot since her mother was on a crazy schedule at that time, and we bought a car seat for our car, too. It just makes sense not to be switching around all the time, and it’s safer, since car seats must be buckled in correctly to be safe, and it’s so easy to make a mistake when buckling and re-buckling into the seat.

  26. I have super short hair that needs a trim every 6 weeks to 2 months. I have a salon where I pay 10.50 for a fabulous cut and 6.00 to have my eyebrows waxed. I love this place!

    Thank you for alerting us to Ting! I now have 100.00 more spendable cash a month since i cut the bill for two phones from 138.00 a month to 30.00 a month. God Bless you and your family!

    Your beautiful girls (and their chickens) are growing up way too fast!

  27. OMG – I love the picture of you two! Great picture! You’ve neen getting some great shots! Can’t say enough about the haircut! It certainly suits you!

  28. I had short hair during college, I liked it for some reasons and not others, but I cut it short and then waited a long time between cuts. Worked for me at the time lol

    Being frugal is so much about having choices for me. I live a lean life I’m happy with and when wanted or needed we can splurge, either a dinner or an emergency, it so calming. I have to remind my husband a lot that this is why we live the way we do, so when an event happens, we dont need to stress. We both grew up with young and poor parents who were stressed about money. So that mindset is hard to shake at times!

  29. I’ve had both long and short hair and love both. It’s the in-between hair that bugs me. When I had short short hair I was working so I got it cut every 6-8 weeks. For me it was a splurge well worth it. I love the relaxation time and being pampered. Me time where no one wanted anything from me! You’re right- when you’re frugal the majority of the time you can splurge once in a while.

  30. I so much enjoy your posts! Recently retired, there are frugality improvements that I now have energy to pursue and I appreciate having your research to fall back on. I cut my own almost-shoulder-length hair during the long lockdown (in CA) with mostly good results, and I’ve always done my own bang trims (with my professional scissors). But back to the salon now–I want to support my hairdresser since she went 4 months with no work, and also I do find it a bit tedious, and doesn’t look quite as good, doing it myself.

  31. I’ve been a short-haired person my whole life (anywhere from pixie to French bob) and have always paid someone to cut my hair because it is super thick and super straight and can get super weird.

    The pixie is super cute on you so if you like your stylist, I think it’s well worth spending the money to have it maintained. I would think a minimum of 10 weeks would work to keep a pixie from getting out of control.

    1. Oh yes, hoping to move house this year so mortgages very much on my mind. And thanks for a glorious update! Those chickens in baby carriers are super.

  32. Love the haircut!!! I second the notion that you keep a regular appointment with the stylist. Short hair can be tricky and giving your dollars back to the community is always a win-win. 😉 if you get it cut super short and reschedule at 10 week or so, you should be pretty happy with it. I also feel like leaving the house for an hour or two to get a haircut constitutes valuable alone time.
    PS- The chicken in the baby carrier was the best thing I’ve seen all week! The girls look SO happy and the chickens look like they begrudgingly allow it. 😂

  33. Please do not buzz your hair! I have been a hairdresser for many years and this is not the direction you want to go. It grows out horrible, like a tennis ball. I really think you’ll be best with a length that you can still pull back, like shoulders. It is just as easy and is much more versatile…also you do not have to get haircuts as often and anyone that can cut a straight line with scissors could trim it…not so with a short layered cut.
    Short hair does require more frequent haircuts and it’s not something you can buzz or do at home easily. Because of the shape of your head, cowlicks and growth patterns the layers are cut in a certain way for it to fall correctly and grow out right. Short haircuts are easy for a few weeks until they need to be cut again. Since it is only a couple inches long to start with even a few weeks growth of 1/2″ makes it feel puffy and starts getting in your eyes and just doesn’t look good. The difference between a good short layered woman’s haircut at a salon (which as you saw can be expensive) and a home haircut off youtube is huge…like I mentioned there are so many things a hairdresser considers and it takes experience to do.

  34. 1) really glad you got the Jabs.
    2) really cute chickens & kids.
    3) the “mom-cut” looks great.
    4) strangely, the more pencils i have, the harder it is to find one.
    5) June was HOT here in NM, and not in a good sense.

  35. I agree with the commenters who offered very solid reasons for seeing professional stylists. It’s like finding a pot of gold when you find a really good one. I have thick hair that grows out quickly and found a Tinkle razor comb comes in handy. It takes the weight away and is smiple and easy to use. Cheap too. I think I paid $6 on Amazon. There’s also a smaller, curved version for brows and fuzz that grows on the sides of your cheeks. Don’t it dry though; add some hairconditioner or small amount of shaving cream.

  36. I LOVED having a buzzcut (and am missing it terribly as I grow my hair out.. It’s likely I’ll go back to it after I retire). I refreshed it every two weeks or so at home with clippers. Now that is truly as close as you can get to zero work – no washing, conditioning, drying, styling, anything required. I did use shampoo for the sake of my especially sensitive scalp, but that’s me. I say go for it! If you hate it, it’ll get to a short pixie length in just 3-4 months depending on your growth rate.

  37. As others have said, love the short do! Looks so cute. And as always, appreciate the updates and the great pics.

    I’ve had buzzed hair and butt length hair and everything in between. Mine is currently a pixie and agree with everything Jennifer Lee said. I started cutting my own a few years back when the stylist could never get it exactly how I wanted and/or I always had to fix something minor when I got home. When she suddenly quit without notice and the replacement stylist charged more, I decided to try cutting it myself. There was learning curve, but I can now cut my hair quite quickly and consistently get results I’m happy with.

    I use the pale green Tinkle hair cutter/comb (Amazon) and it works great for adding texture as it cuts. It also gives wiggle room to cut and then cut a bit more without the drastic straight line that you get with scissors. I have saved SO much money on haircuts (especially since I can’t stand it long in the back and used to start feeling miserable by 4 weeks). I cut the back by feel and then check in the mirror with a hand held. I get compliments on my hair all the time AND don’t tell people I cut it myself to avoid the scrutiny hah.

    I really like that I can cut it as soon as I feel annoyed with it (whether it’s a bang trim or an all over cut) and not wait for an appointment. If it it hits me Friday night, I can cut it on a whim.

  38. Love the chickens in the baby doll carriers. Showed to my kiddo and then had to say we wouldn’t be trying it since she has a carrier like that and we have some neighbors who let their chickens roam around, so we could…!

  39. I’m looking forward to your post that you referenced about paying off your mortgage. I’m interested to hear why you paid it off early. I bought a new home a year ago and have already paid down 7 years on a 15 year mortgage. I’m trying to position myself for a debt free retirement, but it is so tough to be that disciplined every month!

    1. I’m so curious too! I wonder if they refinanced since mortgage rates have been so low, then paid it off. I was so blessed, my dad was so kind to pay my house off for me several years ago.

  40. I cut my long hair after turning 40 and the past 10 years of pixie cuts have been amazing. I will never grow it out again. Such freedom! It air dries quickly and a swipe of styling paste through it and it’s done! I stopped coloring it over 5 years ago as well. It’s silver around my face and salt/pepper in the back. I still can’t believe how many people comment or stop to tell me how much they like my hair. I have to get it cut every 4 weeks though. I guess I feel very blessed that my long-time stylist is $30 including tip!

  41. The noise machine thing cracks me up! We went to Denver a couple of years ago, and stayed at a hotel. Well I’m used to my loud box fan while I sleep. I finally went duh, and got on YouTube and found a white noise video to play. Best idea ever in a pinch lol. And it is several hours, so it won’t shut off.

  42. I recon I have similar hair type to you Mrs Frugalwoods. I vary the length of time between seeing a professional. Though most often go to a dirt cheap barber or a short back and sides (you can ask for/search out how to do a fade too and it minimises the tennis ball phase of the buzz cut. I let it grow out and go again short when I fancy the change. I’ve been doing this the last 5 years and it gives me the most versatility with style and looks with the minimum effort, whilst maintaining my hair quality as its not damaged by colour/heat/products

  43. I don’t currently have a pixie cut but I had one in the past. It’s my favorite hairstyle on myself but I’m definitely not willing to try to maintain it myself, which is why I don’t have it now— i’m not in a financial place for a monthly haircut. But I have buzzed my hair in the past a few times and absolutely loved it. The first time I kept it for six months, the second time was more like 18 to 20 months. It was amazing. It is so soft, it’s so cool (temperature-wise and style-wise), and takes absolutely no work. And the best part? It is instantly dry when you get out of the shower. You just rub your head with a towel and your hair is dry, no drippy stands or anything. Amazing. That being said, it does take a weekly or biweekly buzz if you want to maintain it, but that was pretty quick and obviously free so I say if it’s in the back of your mind, go for it!!

  44. I’m in my mid forties and live in the suburbs of a capital city in Australia with my family. We have a small flock of bantam chickens that bring me an enormous amount of joy 🙂 I love your photos of the girls with their lovely chickens and your hair looks fantastic! Your whole lifestyle and philosophy about money really inspires me to make better money decisions so we can spend as much time as we can together at home enjoying our little back yard farm and each other 🙂
    I gave myself a buzz cut about 18 months ago and I really can’t imagine myself with hair anymore! I clipper my head weekly and that is the entirety of my hair maintenance now and that suits me perfectly! I’d like to say it’s saved me a lot of money but in fairness I suspect that I have spent most of what I saved from not getting haircuts on massive earrings! Now that I have a small and much loved earring collection I will actually start saving some money from having my buzz cut 😉
    Thanks for sharing some of your life with us and encouraging us to be living the life that we want to live and not the one that we have to be living.

  45. Love the short hair. I love to support my hairdresser though I do extend the time between cuts by trimming my own bangs and just a bit off the top. Haha. Can’t wait for the next post. Want to see more of the chickens and their coop.

  46. I LOVE your haircut. It looks fantastic. I am jealous of the easy-care routine too. The girls with the chickens are so cute. Your children are very close in age to mine- and why do they have to grow up so fast?! I wish I could stop the clock sometimes. Well done for living life and being happy- your post was so happy, it was so nice to read.

  47. I am a short hair enthusiast myself and believe it or not, my pixie is even shorter than yours. I have fine hair, combined with lots of gray and I find that I feel my best when I get it cut monthly. My cut with a generous tip is $40 per month. I could go to a barber, that is how short my hair is. I might consider that if my current stylist moves away, which she is considering. I always make my next appointment before I leave right after I pay. That way I don’t get desperate when I feel like I need a trim.
    I don’t use makeup, thrift shop and try to save where I can, so I feel that a monthly haircut is my luxury. My husband cut it for almost a year pre vaccination and he did a good job, but I was thrilled to be able to get back to my stylist.
    I hope that you enjoy your pixie, you look great!

  48. So glad you had a marvelous June! I wish we had let loose more in June now that Delta is tearing through our area since so many are refusing shots.

  49. The short hair looks good! I shaved my hair off once (think GI Jane) when it was down to my waist and it was a fun experience to see it grow at different lengths (currently past my waist again). Question- It says you get health insurance through your husband’s job but I thought you said in another post that he retired? Is he back to work again?

  50. Agreed that short hair is a whole lot less hassle! I use the ‘Combpal’ to cut my hair at home – there are instructions on which combs to use for different short styles.

  51. What a beautiful post, your summer sounds fabulous! Gorgeous haircut! But seriously, you paid off your mortgage! Wow, that’s big news, don’t make us wait for the post on that! (So did I, and it’s too exciting!)

  52. Pixie hair over here too! I manage to go about 4 months between visits to the hairdresser by getting it cut suuuuper short by the hairdresser (as short as she can go with scissors, but not razor. I have the feeling of shaved hair growing back.) Then I use thinning scissors 2 months later when it starts getting boofy. My hair is thick, curly and fast growing so you might be able to manage yourself or go longer between chops! Pixie life is the best life!

  53. Go girl for the hair lady 💛 I mean it’s reasonable money spent to have healthy & good looking hair, you support a local business, you get some me-time & hair grows beautifully. That’s a no brainer!!

  54. I buzzcut my hair a year ago and LOVE it. I invested in some good shears for less than the cost of one haircut (my husband’s were old and not too sharp). So now, instead of $25 every six weeks (my short hair grows fast), I do it myself for free! Buzzcut are fab!

  55. I have a pixie and discovered the joy of a barber after my hairstylist quit. I went from paying $50 plus tip to $20 plus tip. I’ve got it buzzed on one side and to my chin on the other, I called around and asked who was comfortable with that type of haircut. Now I don’t feel guilty about paying so much for a haircut I love!

  56. I’m looking forward to reading your post regarding the Mortgage Payoff and I’m also wondering if Seven whole frozen Chickens for $127 is a reasonable price for your area ?

  57. Picking the right travel card could’ve saved you the TSA pre-check fee and potentially paid for your hotel stay! Love the blog and the updates as always 🙂

    1. yep! We have the Marriot Bonvoy (formerly Starwood Preferred Guest) and are saving alllllllll of our travel points for higher point-trade-in values, such as for overseas hotels. The point-trade-in for the hotel we stayed at in Cambridge wasn’t worth using our points 🙂

      1. I recently upgraded my former-SPG/Marriott Bonvoy to the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant and got the TSA Pre-Check $85 credit when it came time to renew my TSA Pre-Check. It’s a higher annual fee, but most of that comes back to you as a $300 annual credit. Just sharing for any reader who comes across this, as there are several cards that offer the TSA Pre-Check/Global Entry credit.

  58. I can’t wait for your post regarding paying off the mortgage. We are contemplating paying ours off also and would love to know why you decided to take this step.

  59. I use a Flowbee to cut my pixie myself. They still sell them, they were popular decades ago. The blades hook up to your vacuum, so no stray hair mess. Longer spacers that work for men and women. They are in high demand since covid, and since George Clooney stated on a talk show that he still uses his to cut his own hair. YouTube videos instructionals are mostly men, but I use longer spacers myself.

  60. Hello! I realize I’m commenting a year later, but can I get an update on your pixie cut?!?! Do you trim/maintain it yourself? Still loving it?!

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