Best of the Web: Hosted by Kate from On Our Way World
Hi all! I’m Kate from On Our Way World. I’m grateful to Michael for letting me jump in and share a little about myself, as well as some personal finance articles I really love.
I started blogging to combine my love of two things – personal finance and homeschooling. I found that there was a lot of overlap between those of us in the homeschool world and those of us who are pursuing FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early).
We tend to be people who don’t follow the norm, and I think the mentality is the same, in a lot of ways, for both of these things.
I want to introduce homeschoolers to some concepts about personal finance that they may not be aware of (namely, the idea of FIRE and how to work toward achieving it) and also share what an awesome experience homeschooling has been for us, and how it’s given us a lot of freedom and flexibility we wouldn’t otherwise have.
Here are three articles I’m loving this week from the personal finance world!
Penny is one of my favorite personal finance writers for a number of reasons – she’s an incredibly talented writer in general, and I really enjoy reading her blog, aside from the great information she shares. She’s also not scared to step outside the mainstream, or call out the personal finance community when she disagrees with the “groupthink”.
This post is an honest look at how they’re still making progress on paying off their mortgage and investing, even after a salary cut and increased expenses ate into their margin. I think sometimes in the personal finance world we get so caught up in these really dramatic stories – “couple pays of $600,000 in debt in 15 months on a middle-class income!” that we neglect the small wins – and this is a huge mistake.
Taking steps in the right direction and making small gains can be incredibly impactful in the long run, and it’s important for us to remember this and celebrate the little wins as well as the big ones.
Oh, Go Curry Cracker… Jeremy and Winnie are my #goals for finance, travel, and parenting. A big part of the reason we chose to homeschool was so that we could travel and explore the world with our kids – something Jeremy and Winnie have really nailed. Their travel posts are among my favorites, and they have amazing travel hacking tips.
This post, however, was a little bit different – it’s actually a guest post from Nick, who they met in Guatemala… Nick actually works at Mawson Station, Antarctica as an HVAC balancing technician. His stories – and pictures – are INCREDIBLE and have reinforced my desire to get my kids to every continent before they turn 18 (a goal we set for ourselves a while back).
He also makes some great points about how a job like this can impact your finances – jobs in Antarctica pay well, and there’s literally nothing there to spend money on (!) so for people just starting out, it can give a hefty boost to the savings and investments. Because it’s such a small crew, there’s also the opportunity to learn a lot of new skills, which will often translate to higher earnings later on. Plus – let me just say it again – the pictures are to die for.
This is a great post that discusses challenging ourselves and our thoughts and being open to new ideas and information. He discusses this in terms of politics (it’s OK to identify as one part of the political spectrum, and still disagree with some aspects of that particular group) as well as personal finance.
I think that’s really important to remember, and something that all of my favorite personal finance bloggers tend to do – they challenge the groupthink and some of the accepted beliefs and norms of personal finance and investing. While there are some really solid foundational principles, it’s really important to remain open to continuously challenging our beliefs and accepted facts- and Erik does a great job reminding us of that in this post.
An article of mine that you might enjoy: Good Medicine: The importance of advance directives and planning ahead
While we are pursuing FIRE, I am much more focused on the FI part than the RE part – I really, really love what I do as a nurse practitioner, and I have a hard time imagining ever wanting to stop that completely. One thing that I have learned over many years taking care of very sick people, is the flawed perception that the general public has about what actually goes on during a “code”, and how incredibly important advance directives are.
The personal finance community, in general, does a great job discussing emergency preparedness in some ways (ex. having an emergency fund) but we need to consider this from other aspects as well – discussing our desires ahead of time, making sure that we have the information and documentation that our loved ones need in case something happens to us. In this post, I discuss the importance of advance directives and planning ahead, as well as the pain that failure to plan can cause.
I can pretty much recite the Princess Bride verbatim from beginning to end, and I feel like there’s never an inappropriate time for a Princess Bride quote or reference… My husband says it can get “annoying”, but I do not think that word means what he thinks it means…
Thank you, Kate, for your insightful contribution! Just because we have movie favorites doesn’t mean we are geeks… right? Right?