1. Karen

    The spreadsheet, granular detail might be important to some. The purpose, the why of what I’m doing with money is much more significant and meaningful. I remind myself to not get lost in the tiny bits, zoom out and check priorities. This past week, for example, I really sunk money into a vacation/visit with my 20 year old, not extravagant, not frugal, it was priceless, I won’t recoup the money, I didn’t spend hours strategizing reward points. I got to spend time with my amazing almost adult kid! No spreadsheet needed, but my choices and actions led me to be able to have that time with her, I am grateful.

    Keep posting, celebrating the wins, no judgements needed, no harsh competition to see who is getting to FI the fastest.

    • Totally! I didn’t mean to be dismissive of spreadsheets (I love mine!), but things that mean the most to me personally are always more tied to words than numbers 😀

  2. Great post as always! I really appreciate the way you view money. I also can very much relate to the desire to have a lot of savings in cash. I know I *should* be keeping it in the market but I just don’t like the volatility. Between the likelihood we’ll need a new car, heating system, and who knows what else, I just want to know that money is there!

    • Yes, yes, yes! I feel like everything I own needs its own emergency fund. There are just so many parts of a house, parts of a car, parts of all the humans here that could break down any moment.

  3. I think these are all good goals. I don’t know that I’d do a time capsule, but I try to work on a lot of the things you mentioned. Like with balance: Right now, I have a bunch of free time so I’m tempted to dip a toe into the freelancing world. But honestly I just don’t know that I have the energy for the hustle, and I also don’t want 99% of my life to be about personal finance. The current 85-90% is more than sufficient.

    I’m also terrible and remembering that I am not the numbers on the screen. My self-worth is overly tied to my net worth, I’m afraid. And as it dips… Well, it’s very disheartening. Especially because I’m working on enough goals that I can’t quickly rebuild savings as I take money out. So I’m having to watch it go down precipitously and only slowly build back up. Sigh.

    I think overall we’re both doing pretty well, though. We just need to remind ourselves of that a little more often.

  4. TJ

    Great post. My favorite part was: ” Here’s where I am today, and I’m thankful to be here and looking forward to tomorrow.” That is what this entire Financial Independence pursuit is for me.

    To answer your question: “So Tell Me…Would you ever want to create a time capsule or money snapshot of yourself? What would you include?”
    I would definitely include my monthly budget and net worth report. Would probably also include a letter “To my future self” about how I am feeling today and what I look forward to in the future.

    Hope you get lots more responses on what to include, because I’ve never done anything like that. What I do have from my past is my monthly budget and wish I had a net worth report also, so I could admire my progress.

    I started budgeting, and understanding what I’m doing about 5 years ago. The progress has been amazing, and it looks like I might be able to super charge that progress in the near future. I also am very grateful for the Financial Independence community for all it has taught me.

    Wishing you continued success on your path.

  5. Now that our mortgage is gone, our recent sets of money posts are almost all about spending stuff. It’s… not as interesting. I mean, that’s not a great reason to slow down mortgage payment, but I sometimes suspect our readers might have preferred that we had held onto it a bit longer.

    • That’s really fascinating! You’re actually not the first person I’ve heard comment that blogging totally changes when your debt is gone. Interesting.

      Also, I can’t wait to find out!

  6. I love your views on this, Penny! I also struggle with our mortgage since I never thought I’d own a home at all. Every time Mr.TA says “we’re building equity” you can practically see the steam coming out of my ears. It’s also the only debt we hold (thankfully), so I’d like to get it gone as soon as possible. It’s great that you’ve recognized maybe you’ve leaned too far one way when it comes to balancing side hustling and living. I’m too far on the other side I think. Time to really figure out how to make a sustainable side hustle!

    • I think it changes over time, too. I probably feel differently about my mortgage now that there is less of it. Plus, I think I also feel differently about time. (insert musing about being old but not that old)

  7. I 100% agree with the sentiment of not letting other people make you feel guilty about how you choose to spend or not spend your money. What is the point in saving money if not to reward yourself guilt free every once in awhile on whatever the hell you want. I know the pull of the bright Target aisles has me splurge on my little one every once and awhile. Sue me.

    • It’s hard for me. The longer I’m in the PF world, the more I feel like I’m almost obligated to judge myself (and maybe others). It’s something I’m really working on actively NOT doing.

  8. As a teacher myself doing my best to work towards financial independence, I can relate to so many things that you have shared! I love your voice and your rational personality! I can’t wait to read more of your posts!

  9. This is fascinating – and I agree, a financial capsule is the most interesting when it includes what you feel about your situation. I am currently a student, so I am not earning an income, but I have to say that I share a lot of your bigger picture mindsets, like how I am working on not comparing myself to how others spend their money.

    Also, those shoes are beautiful.

    • It is so hard (for me!) to try to tune other people out. I think as bloggers, we get so motivated and energized by other people. But I have to remember that it’s OK to take some time to only worry about myself.

      And thanks <3 I love the shoes!

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