Optimize Your Life: Best Money Spent

best-money-spent-optimizeLast month, I thought long and hard about my best money spent. Because what’s life without chocolate? And it turns out relationships matter, too. While much of the conversations in personal finance focus on not spending, I figured it was time to shake things up. Matt from Optimize Your Life is here to help. Curious what he considers to be his best money spent? Read on! Continue reading “Optimize Your Life: Best Money Spent”

Optimize Your Life: Best Money Spent

Beyond Financial Fitness in 2016

Financial FitnessWith the new year just days away, now seems like a fitting time to look to the future. Many of the posts on She Picks Up Pennies have had a financial focus this past year. Looking ahead, I plan to continue to pay down debt (we’re shooting for well above the $18k mark for 2016!), work towards financial independence, and slash away at aspects of our budget. However, I hope to explore more of the heart of this blog – that is to find many ways to live more purposefully.  Continue reading “Beyond Financial Fitness in 2016”

Beyond Financial Fitness in 2016

Monday Motivation: Decluttering, Homesteading, and More

summer deals!Each Monday, I post a curated list of blogs, podcasts, recipes, books, and activities that will get me motivated for the week ahead.

Click – Because I come from the school of Cher Horowitz and Carrie Bradshaw, the whole idea of living purposefully with less stuff was a bit of a shock to the system. Now that I’m in the midst of some serious decluttering, I find myself turning to Blonde on a Budget for inspiration. Sure, there’s a host of decluttering gurus on the Internet, too, but Cait’s relatable attitude and consistent approach have me convinced that this habit is actually something I can sustain.

Listen – Last week, I confessed that I am a Serial addict through and through. If you listened to the first season of Serial, you’ve probably already heard of Undisclosed. Undisclosed is a podcast created by three lawyers in conjunction with the Adnan Syed Trust. While the podcast may not have the same soothing sounds of Sarah Koenig’s radio voice or the big-time production quality of Serial, it has shed a lot of light on the case – and unearthed quite a few things that Koenig missed. (Note: If you started with Undisclosed but drifted off, listen to episode 10. Now. Just do it.)

Cook – ‘Tis the season…for slow cookers! This recipe for Salsa Verde Chicken combines my love of all things salsa with the time-saving ease of a crockpot. The fact that you probably have most of the ingredients on hand is an added bonus. The leftovers are great on top of a bed of lettuce for lunch the next day, too.

ReadThe Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City by Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen was so engrossing. In addition to having spent recent weeks contemplating a new garden strategy for next (we try to expand and add new plants each year), I had also just finished reading Zero Waste Home. So I was probably perfectly primed to dive into a book that outlines all the ways in which city-dwellers can garden, harvest, can, pickle, and even raise hens. While Mr. P has outright rejected my pleas for a chicken coop in the past, I see some fun bean teepees in our future.  

Do – I’m a big fan of bodyweight exercises, especially if I’m crunched for time, since I have to travel no further than my living room. I love this list because it’s split into sections that target different areas of the body. The core workout is pretty intense. And the model’s expression* after tip 50 makes the entire list worth reading.

(Note: I’m not affiliated with any of these links in any way. Just spreading the goodness.)

So Tell Me…What’s got you motivated this Monday? Are you ready to bust out the slow cooker now that fall is fast approaching? Do you have any go-to workout routines when you’re pressed for time?

Monday Motivation: Decluttering, Homesteading, and More

Monday Motivation: Folklore, Clear Thinking and Then Some

 

Monday Motivation (2)Each Monday, I post a curated list of blogs, podcasts, recipes, books, and activities that will get me motivated for the week ahead.

Click – This post from Bridget at Money after Graduation is such an excellent reminder to keep an eye on your pennies – not just your earnings, but your spendings and savings, too. I wrote a little bit about the time-money balance last week when I fell back into couponing, but her take about how we’re never too short on time to keep track of our money is powerful reminder that everyone should heed.  Continue reading “Monday Motivation: Folklore, Clear Thinking and Then Some”

Monday Motivation: Folklore, Clear Thinking and Then Some

Why I Walked Away From the Gym this Summer


Why I Ditched the Gym
How did I get beach ready this summer? I quit the gym.

After working out at a bargain-chain fitness center for a few years, I started experimenting with at-home fitness about a year ago. I checked out Pilates and yoga DVDs from my local library, started following a few fitness blogs, and bookmarked some YouTube channels. I also kept going with sprinting running jogging around the neighborhood using the MapMyRun app on my phone.

The more I found myself exercising at home and in my neighborhood, the less I felt the need to go to the gym. Between the commute to the gym and fighting the siren song of donuts on Tuesdays once I was there*, I realized that gym just wasn’t for me at this moment in time. Makes sense, right? Right.

Here’s where it stops making sense and starts costing cents dollars. Hundreds of dollars. My membership cost exactly $10 each month, totaling $120 a year. Plus that pesky $20 annual membership fee.  Nonetheless, I waited over a year to cancel my membership. Why? Simple. Ten dollars didn’t seem like that big of a deal, especially since I kept telling myself that I might go back to working out at the gym one day. One day in the distant future when I’m no longer turned off by the ever-increasing amount of gym mirror selfies and sweaty people who ignore the signs asking them to wipe down machines when they’re done**. Continue reading “Why I Walked Away From the Gym this Summer”

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