Our family lives in Northern New England, so we have lots of ski slopes very close by our house. Unfortunately, skiing is very expensive and can work against our ability to save, so if we want to ski, we have to be smart about it.
Admittedly, skiing on the cheap is very difficult. Skiing is an expensive hobby, with expensive equipment, clothing, and lift tickets. And since our family is on a three-year journey to save as much money as possible so we can become location independent, we have to be careful about what we spend on entertainment costs. But our family gets around a lot of those expenses by utilizing some of the following “tricks”: Continue reading “How to Ski on the Cheap”
Somehow, having kids seems to bring, at least in Western households, so many toys, books, clothes, and activities. Our family is working towards location independence at the end of three years and so, in preparation, have begun helping our kids adopt minimalist principles in our home to lessen their dependence on stuff.
Our society has definitely bought into the philosophy that more is better. Ironically, though, especially for our kids, more stuff turns out to be worse.
The Best Parenting Book
Simplicity Parenting, written by Kim John Payne, and what I consider the best book on parenting that I’ve read, has a unique insight into what our modern culture is doing to our kids. Payne writes, “If, as a society, we are embracing speed, it is partially because we are swimming in anxiety. Fed this concern and that worry, we’re running as fast as we can to avoid problems and sidestep danger.” Continue reading “Semi-Minimalist Kids”
My family is on a journey to become location independent in three years. We plan to leave New England and give our family the opportunity to travel together. I can teach English while we’re there, which would give us health insurance and free schooling for the kids, or we might find remote jobs. So today, let’s contemplate moving to Singapore!
When my friend moved to Singapore a few years ago, I admit to not even knowing where it was, or that it was both a city and a country.
I had to do some quick Wiki research to figure out that Singapore is a young country (only just over 50 years old) and is on the tip of the Malay peninsula, just below Thailand and Malaysia.
Lee Kuan Yew became the country’s powerful prime minister, implementing strict rules to unite the country’s three distinct ethnic groups—Chinese, Malasians, and Indians from the Tamil region. It’s infamous for one of its rules—no chewing gum in public. According to our friends, these rules were necessary because Yew had inherited a country of people with little education and had to institutionalize polite behavior, so that he could successfully modernize the country. And he did. Singapore went from a third-world to a first-world country in a single generation.
Continue reading “Let’s Move to: Singapore”
Does getting out of debt, saving more, or building net worth seem hopeless? Fear not. You can make lots of mistakes, start late, and still create financial independence.
Part I of this post details the beginning of Mr. ThreeYear’s and my financial story.
Basically, it was the story of how we made a ton of financial mistakes, had several big setbacks, and still managed to make fine progress on the road toward financial independence. It detailed all the mistakes we made like buying a house at the top of the market and selling at the bottom, not saving for retirement early and blowing all our money on eating out and new Apple products, and buying cars we didn’t need on credit.
In Part II, I’ll explain how we dug ourselves out of what seemed like a hopeless hole, got out of debt, and totally transformed our financial situation.
Continue reading “The Story of How Two Average Joes Got Out of Debt and Got on the Road to Financial Independence: Part II”
Ever wonder how you can build financial independence if you’re not a super saver, maybe spend a little too much going out to eat, or like to go on vacation?
This is the story of how two Average Joes (or, one average Joe and one average Jane) have created financial security without being big savers, super frugal, or mega income earners (and still go out to eat and take vacations). Continue reading “How Do I Get Ahead If I’m Not a Mega Saver or Super Frugal? The Story of How Two Average Joes Got Out of Debt and Got on the Road to Financial Independence: Part I”
Since it’s February 15th, I thought it was a good time to start reflecting on this year’s goals. (Just kidding, I’m just a little slow in posting these). So, what are my goals for 2017? This is Year One of the Three Year Experiment, so I feel compelled to get them right.
My Goal Sheet
I filled out my goal sheet several weeks before the New Year. I’m somewhat of a goal nut, because I find I get so much more accomplished if I give myself a framework (it helps me focus because I’m very easily distracted. Especially by my new-to-me-got-it-on-eBay iPhone 6). Continue reading “This Year’s Goals”
Last week, I was offered a new gig as a part-time ESOL Teacher. This gig will allow me to work in two schools for a total of about 30 hours maximum per week. But is it a good idea? Does it help us with our three year goals?
A New Gig Helps Me Mind the Gap
Personal finance bloggers talk all the time about the ways to increase your net worth—spend less or make more.
Some advocate spending less, some show you how to make more. Some, like Afford Anything, talk about both—minding the gap between how much you spend and how much you earn, and getting it as large as possible.
My husband is the main income earner of our family. I, on the other hand, work only 15 hours a week. But part of my job is making sure I’m here before and after school, taking kids to appointments, and making sure life runs smoothly for the Three Year Experiment family. The more I’m at home, the smoother things run. But I’ve also found I have to work. I go a little crazy if I don’t.
Continue reading “When to Take a New Gig”
What does making your bed have to do with your financial health? Good question!
Habits are important. Good habits are small behaviors that seem so trivial, yet they can reap profound benefits in your life. Take this blog, for example. I couldn’t find any time during the day to write, so I told myself I would get up each day a little earlier and write for the first half hour or hour. That behavior, multiplied by many days, has created blog posts and content. Continue reading “A Year of Good Habits: Make Your Bed Every Day!”
Yesterday my husband sent me a link to this school. Last February, almost a year ago, we went on an incredible, two-week anniversary vacation trip to Asia. I’ll highlight how we did that in a future post. We started our stay in Bangkok and my husband loved it. I mean, really loved it.
First of all, Bangkok is an incredibly cosmopolitan city. The food, which is abundantly piled on practically every square inch of sidewalk space, is delicious. Everything is shockingly cheap. We stayed in an AirBnB at the edge of Sukhumvit, a really nice part of the city, for about $23 a night. We ate meals on the street for around $2, for both of us. We splurged on an English-speaking guide, who took us anywhere we wanted to go all day long, for about $80.
Continue reading “Let’s Move to: Bangkok!”