| Real Life Strategies for Building Wealth


Two weeks of disrupted nights and days with too little done over far too long!

This is what John and I have been going through. Why?

Because we have the uncanny ability to do things that disturb our life for years.

When our older sons were teens and we could go the theatre without planning it as a military campaign  we decided to have a baby.

Our youngest son is great and brings us so much joy; but it’s been years since we’ve organised an evening at a concert.

Now that he is almost a teen and we are on the brink of being able to go to the cinema on ten minutes notice we decided to get a puppy.

She is lovely, lively, clever and difficult. It is like having a baby again: she cries during the night, has accidents on my lovely rugs and gets restless and naughty when over tired.

What’s more, she is a bottomless money pit. Bills are piling! By the time we add up the price we paid for her, her food, bed, two crates (saviour when house training a puppy) and the vet we are looking at about £600 ($1,000) we’ve spent in the last three weeks or so.

At least we didn’t over do the toys – the ones she has are mainly presents; she is entertained for hours by an old newspaper and her favourite toy ever is an empty milk plastic bottle.

I needed the rant though I love this little dog. The expenses were expected and we have budgeted for them.

I suppose the take away, if there is one, is that many people get dogs because they have the romantic vision of lazy evenings by the fire and pleasant walks on fresh, sunny mornings. They ignore cleaning mess for several months, the dirty paws on the just decorated walls, the walks in the rain and sleet, the expenses and the restricted options for travel.

If you are thinking of getting a dog wake up to reality and do it with your eyes wide open.

One way to wake up to reality is to debunk mythology irrespective of how cosy this may appear.

This is what my friends from Control Your Cash did last week; they dealt a fatal blow to a myth created by the media. Remember all the hype about the income of happiness? Yep, the one where media around the world got very excited that economists have found people are happiest when their income is about £50,000 or $75,000. Well, it turns out this is all ‘a crock of garbage’. Go read the article if you want to know why. And please don’t limit your income because you want to be happy; it really doesn’t work this way.

One of my favourite posts last week is by Chuck from The Tortoise Banker. He reminded me that we humans tend to overdo things and that most of our lives, including our personal finances, don’t have to be that complex. Do you want to read the simplest personal finance post you’ll ever find? Visit Chucks site and read it. If you want to know what to do, this post pretty much covers it. Unfortunately, as is often the case, our problems are mainly with how and why.

You know that I worship in the temple of Seth Godin’s blog. It is part of my ‘daily rounds’ ritual and while a distraction the gains in terms of ideas outweigh the loss in terms of time. I a recent post Seth raised the matter of the difference between applause and feedback. The former is pleasant but useless the latter may hurt but helps us move forward and clean up our act. Unfortunately, in this time of mass media and bitty information we may be stuck with applause rather than feedback.

Did you over spend last Christmas? If you did, or you simply wish to re-vamp your finances, you may enjoy the financial boot camp over on The Savvy Scott. There have already been action points on checking your energy bills, reducing monthly debt payments and ways to re-finance your mortgage. Plenty to work with towards a financially healthy future.

Last but not least, a post I absolutely loved this week is about the humble, boring potato. I learn something new every time I visit Miss Thrifty. In the summer, we made her ‘home made fruit fly trap’ – and it worked. Now she tells us about five thrifty uses for potatoes. And you know what? Only one of these has anything to do with food!

Now, how has The Money Principle been doing?

Last week we published a guest post on First Home News. So, if you are curious to see what are the points you need to consider before committing to buying a house – and taking on a mortgage – click on this link and read it.

We were included in the following carnivals:

Yakezie Carnival at Save and Conquer
Carn. of Fin. Camaraderie at Fearless Dollar
Aspiring Blogger Fin. Carnival at Aspiring Blogger
Carn. of Financial Planning at Squirrelers

This is all for now! Speak soon.

photo credit: victor_nuno via photopin cc