Monday, September 17, 2012


This week we closed on the sale of what had been our home for 19 years. Going through a packing frenzy of moving life-long belongings and wanting to pass on a sparkling, clean adobe; the moment caught me completely off-guard. I am not an emotional person, but upon the final signature at the closing, I burst into tears and hugged the new owners of our home where we had raised our family. I was passing a part of us on to these newly-met out-of-towners.

Over the course of the day, I went from exhaustion, -to tears, -to exhilaration. For the first time in three decades, we were mortgage-free. It felt gypsy-like. Think of how close the moment of being totally debt free. This summer, we purchased five acres out in the country, have our orchard started, a vegetable garden in, 41 grape vines underway and four hens laying eggs – but no house. Not wanting to risk two mortgages, we made the decision that we would sell our current home before building our next home. And in the interim? We would make due with our motorhome.

Still waiting for electricity and water, living in a motorhome parked in a cow pasture feels a little too off-the-grid for me. Yes, we are saving lots of money and are appreciative for the next space already. We are open to the 6-9 month adventure of what I consider an ultimate frugal life-style. But there are two sides to this coin and we are finding ‘homeless’ comes with both its hardships and its blessings. Hopefully, the blessings will continue to outpace the hardships.  

What extremes have you taken on, in either risk-aversion or in goal-savings? I want to hear from someone more nuts than us. :)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Frugal Fun Night?

As classes have started and I’m back to teaching personal finance, I have a challenge for all the students taking this class and using “Personal Finance; Building Your Future” by Walker & Walker. I want to know who can come up with the best frugal fun night. Add your suggestions and ideas by adding it as a comment to this blog. Keep it clean (PG rating), include an estimated cost and how this Frugal Fun Night reflects your values – the values that you worked on in Chapter 1. Remember, being frugal is not being cheap, but it is the wise spending of money in accordance with your values.

I look forward to reading your responses and getting ideas of how I can spend a Frugal Fun Night!