Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Book Review: The Money Saving Mom's Budget

Book Review: The Money Saving Mom's Budget (Slash your spending, Pay down your debt, Streamline your life, and Save Thousands a year) by Crystal Paine

Crystal's book is an excellent book on living within your financial means, creating and living on a budget. It contains helpful resources. I appreciate Crystal's approach-slow and easy! She emphasizes to not try and do a complete overhaul overnight. She has an extremely thorough chapter on coupons. If you ever wanted help in using coupons, this is the book for you. At the end of the book, she also has an appendix on "10 tips for a successful garage sale" and "10 ways to earn an extra $100 per month."  There is also a list of websites and specific book recommendations on various topics.

A Few Quotes:
"If you want to get your finances in order, you must learn to say no. Not only do you need to learn to say no to overspending and no to buying things you can't afford, but first and foremost you must learn to say no to over-booking your life. You'll never be able to take control of your bank account or make significant traction toward your financial goals if you spend the bulk of your time running around like a chicken with its head cut off."

"When your children have a birthday and get new toys, have them choose the same number of old toys to get rid of. Without much effort, this rule keeps clutter from prolific breeding in the closets behind your back."

"A budget gives purpose to your money and it frees you up to enjoy living life rather than spending most of your time worrying about how you're going to afford to live."

"On occasion, challenge yourself to see how long you can go without going to the grocery store. When we do this, I often find we have a lot more food on hand than I realized."

My Thoughts:
Crystal's book is so valuable. It helped me to see that money itself is not the only thing that needs to be budgeted. Time and priorities show first and foremost where your money goes. Every hear the saying "show me your checkbook, and I'll show you where your heart is?" It's true. So, unexpectedly, I really got the most out of Crystal's chapter on setting personal goals, knowing what I'm good at, what I want to see happen in my life in the next 5-10 years and the end of my life. I did this and it really opened my eyes. I saw what is REALLY important to me. What goes across the board in all the areas I wrote down is where I found my priorities and where I'll deposit my time and money. For example, rather than buying a new outfit, I learned that if I really love to write, I'd rather put money towards a writer's workshop, some sort of class, or babysitter so that I can write. I like to look nice, but what's my goal? Crystal's book really helped me to think about my goals long term and how my finances affect them.

I loved her chapter towards the end of the book on contentment. It is so important to make a gratitude list and remember what I've been given by God-the list is endless. If I can keep a grateful perspective, it will help me remember that eternal things are much more precious than earthly, material things. God is so good!

 *You can check out Crystal's blog here.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Helpful Tip Tuesday: Words For A Friend

"Words a Friend Would Love to Hear

Jesus taught, 'Treat others as you want them to treat you' (Luke 6:31 TLB). Make a list of words that you would like to hear and then use those same words to bless others. If there are words you would like to hear, chances are there are others out there who would like to hear them too.

Below are some of my favorites:

*You bring out the best in me.
*You are an inspiration to me.
*I love to hear how God is working in your life.
*How can I pray for you today?
*I can help you with that.
*I'd like your opinion.
*What do you think?
*You teach me so much about friendship.
*You inspire me to be a better person.
*You are a great wife, mother, friend, etc.
*Can I bring you dinner tonight?
*I believe in you.
*You can accomplish anything God has called you to do.
*I am so glad we are friends.
*Yep, you made a mistake. Now, let's put it behind us and move on.
*You won't see me throwing the first stone.
*We all make mistakes.
*Thank you for...
*I am hurting with you.
*I don't understand either.
*Will you help me_____________? You are so good at it.
*What can I do to help you reach your goal?
*You are such a good friend.
*I have learned so much from you.
*I want to be like you when I grow up."

~taken from The Power of a Woman's Words by Sharon Jaynes

***What words do your friends tell you that make you feel loved and special? Please share them in the comments below!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Triumph Over Sin

"I know of no other way to triumph over sin long-term than to gain a distaste for it because of a superior satisfaction in God." 

~John Piper, Desiring God

Friday, February 22, 2013

Look To Bible Characters If...

"Timely Advice

If you are impatient, sit down quietly and talk with Job.
If you are just a little strongheaded, go and see Moses.
If you are getting weak-kneed, take a good look at Elijah.
If there is no song in your heart, listen to David.
If you are a policy man, read Daniel.
If you are getting sordid, spend a while with Isaiah.
If you feel chilly, get the beloved disciple to put his arm around you.
If your faith is below par, read Paul.
If you are getting lazy, watch James.
If you are losing sight of the future, read all of Revelation."

                                                 ~Author Unknown

Friday, February 15, 2013

Quote from Charles Spurgeon

"That religion which costs a man 
nothing is usually worth nothing."

~Charles Spurgeon

Monday, February 4, 2013

21 Things To Remember

1.      No one can ruin your day without YOUR permission.
2.    Most people will be about as happy as they decide to be.
3.    Others can stop you temporarily but only you can do it permanently.
4.    Whatever you are willing to put up with is exactly what you will have.
5.    Success stops when you do.
6.    When your ship comes in.... make sure you are willing to unload it.
7.    You will never "have it all together."
8.    Life is a journey...not a destination. Enjoy the trip!
9.    The biggest lie on the planet: "When I get what I want I will be happy."
10.  The best way to escape your problem is to solve it.
11.  I've learned that ultimately 'takers' lose and 'givers' win.
12.  Life's precious moments don't have value unless they are shared.
13.  If you don't start it's certain you won't arrive.
14.  We often fear the thing we want the most.
15.  He or she who laughs......lasts.
16.  Yesterday was the deadline for all complaints.
17.  Look for opportunities...not guarantees.
18.  Life is what's coming....not what was.
19.  Success is getting up one more time.
20.  Now is the most interesting time of all.
21.  When things go wrong.....don't go with them."

~Author Unknown

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