Goodbye, 2017

2017 was an interesting year. It was busy, for us. Fluid. Full of unsteadiness, financial insecurity, lack of routine. Lots of uncertainty. Change.

2017: One Year of No New Clothes

I'm finally coming out of the closet- my sparse, Goodwill-sourced closet- and admitting that, in 2017, I managed to go an entire year without buying a single piece of brand new, off-the-rack clothing.

Christmas 2017

Our third Christmas as Mr. and Mrs., our first in our very own house.

Ways We're Stretching Money

2017 has been a tumultuous year for us financially. After unstable work, moving, and changing vehicles, we're trying extra hard here at the end to get our heads above the water. Here are a few new ways we're stretching our money these days.

Resuming the Snowball

Our debt snowball has been on hold since June.

Life has been pretty hectic since then. We've changed vehicles, moved out of our apartment, bought a house, begun remodeling the house, and gone through some job-related financial hardships and changed jobs (twice, actually).

After all this transition, I'm excited to finally be settling into our new home and establishing a new sense of normalcy. And with that, a brand new budget and an updated list of debts.

The Renovation Begins

We've turned in the keys to our apartment, said goodbye to its three flights of stairs, and fully moved into the new house. And I must admit, our new abode is in a state of disarray. With gutted walls, drywall dust, and various holes in the floors and ceiling, it's pretty much a chaotic danger zone.

Yes. The renovation has begun.

Finding Our Homestead: An Update

Back in June, I shared that my husband and I are in the process of becoming homeowners for the first time. I wrote briefly about making an offer on a house and putting our debt snowball on hold, and I thought that now, several weeks deeper into the process, I'd go into a little more detail about what it has been like. Because as someone who has always lived with my parents or rented from a landlord, I've been completely clueless from the start.

After #MinsGame

When you spend 31 days tossing out 496 things you don't need, it's going to affect you.

10 Ways to Save Money on Groceries

Like most people, the largest chunk of our cash budget each month goes to groceries. It's by far the biggest category. Since this tends to be our main money-spender, I thought I'd share some ways we've reduced our grocery expenses as we work toward our goal of debt freedom.

#Mins Game - Final Week

I feel the need to share that this game never got as difficult as I expected it to, and I keep asking myself if that means I did something wrong.

#Mins Game - Week Three

Three weeks in, and it's only now starting to get difficult.

Five Years

Five years ago today, I launched Life Is For Living with this blog post.

#Mins Game- Week Two

I'm two weeks in, and I'm feeling good. I've already filled up two large cardboard boxes and multiple grocery sacks full of things to sell or donate. Week One was an easy start, perhaps too easy, and Week Two was only slightly more difficult. I have so much junk to get rid of, I'm currently thinking I could play this game again next month.

Then I remember the numbers for the last week. 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31... *gulp*

#Mins Game- Week One

In my last post, I shared my plans to play the Minimalism Game this month, a somewhat crazy challenge inspired by The Minimalists.

Plans for July

July is going to be a busy month for me. I'm leaving one job, starting a brand new full-time job, and possibly hanging on to one of my current part-time jobs to pick-up shifts occasionally to help our finances. We're also going to be starting the home inspection process of buying our first house!

Financial Update: June 2017 - Pausing the Snowball...Again

June has been an exciting month. I got a start date for a new full-time, day shift (!!!) nursing job with higher pay and benefits. We put in an offer on a house, went through some negotiation, and are currently under contract and awaiting a home inspection. Big life changes!

And often, with big life changes comes financial insecurity.

Finding Our Homestead

We've been married for just over two years. In those two years, we've lived in three places: a single room in a co-ed field house in Belknap, Illinois, a two-bedroom duplex in Kirksville, Missouri, and now, a third-floor apartment in Huntsville, Alabama.

Financial Update: May 2017

This month was quite a success!

15 Ways to Save Money and Reduce Waste

Financial Update: April 2017

We got ON IT this month.

The Lie of College: An Ode to Student Loans

If I had it to do over again, I don't know if I'd go to college.

Saying "No" Like Grandma: Living Within Your Means

We're an entitled generation.

The Homestead Diet

Ever since I was a nine-year-old girl obsessed with Little House on the Prairie, I've dreamed of living a quiet, simple life in the country.

Financial Update: March 2017

Welcome back, debt snowball!

Financial Update: February 2017

It's been a while. And it's not gonna be pretty.

Added Value: February

In January, I began a new blog series called Added Value, inspired by a podcast tradition of The Minimalists. Life Is for Living has been quiet throughout February, unfortunately, due to miscellaneous up-and-down life situations. I haven't had much positivity to share lately, but I'm continuing my series now with the following list of things that have added value to my life during the past few uncertain weeks.

Added Value: January

Negativity is everywhere. I'm sure you've noticed. Almost everything I've read/seen/heard lately has done nothing but discourage, drain, and worry me. As a writer and blogger, I don't want to add to that noise. Inspired by a practice of The Minimalists, I am choosing to counteract the negativity by focusing on how I can serve you, the person reading this, by sharing positive things that have added value to my life lately. Things that you might find value in as well.

So here goes. I present the first of a yearlong series, a brief list of things that have encouraged and inspired me during the month of January.

What I Learned from a 7 Day Media Fast


Yesterday, I turned 28. 

Ditching the TV: An Experiment

Yep. You read it correctly. This marathon-watching, accomplished Supernatural-fanfic-writing, former aspiring television screenwriter has decided to get rid of the TV.

At least for a while.

My Only Goal for 2017

Another year is upon us. We're already a few days in, and for the first time in my life, I still haven't made a list of goals. 

#94- Read a Book Based Entirely on Its Cover

Have you ever, whilst perusing the shelves at Barnes and Noble, found yourself suddenly enraptured by the cover art of a random novel?