Get to Know Me
My Frugal Philosophy
There are two reasons that people choose to live frugally; out of necessity, and out of desire. While both lead to the same outcome, having the desire to be frugal makes living the life much more fun, while being frugal out of necessity usually leads to a free-for-all spending once you lay your hands on some money. (To figure out which one you are, ask yourself what you would do if you won a $1,000 shopping spree? For me the answer is simple: go wild with $100 out of the $1,000, and put the rest into savings. Case closed.)
Frugal By Choice
Money has come in and out of my life, but being frugal is a mainstay. I grew up on a dairy farm where there was never much to go around. As a young adult I worked through college. I was laid off from my job in 2008, though fortunately I had a sizable emergency fund in place at that point. These facts could lead you to believe that I chose to be frugal out of necessity; but that is simply not the case. Even as a DINK, or a dual-income, no kids household, I choose to be frugal (and to enjoy it!). My student loans will be paid off in a few short months and next month my husband and I will own both of our cars, so the only payments we have each month is a mortgage and living expenses, such as food, gas and utilities. Even though I can now afford the things and the experiences that I could not as a child, teenager, or early twenty-something, I just don’t want to spend my money and life energy on them. However, that does not mean that I don’t want them, nor does it mean that I will do without. Deprivation is not my idea of a great life.
Being laid off was a catalyst to delve even deeper into my passion for saving money, and I began to research new ways to save money and to puchase things for free or at a severe discount. I was almost in a craze as I learned many secrets of the trade that I, frugal by choice, had never even thought of before.
Yet I quickly became frustrated and disillusioned by the two overbearing opinions in the world of personal finance. It seemed like there were only two choices when handling money. I could either a): spend freely, getting all of the things and experiences that I wanted, but give up money and most likely go into debt or b): I could spend nothing, getting none of the things and experiences that I want in life, and die with some money in my pocket. Quite honestly, I knew that neither of these options would work for me, and I set about finding a third option.
The Choice Most People Don’t Believe Exists
So I posed the question: Can I have the things and experiences that I want in life—traveling the world, clothes from brand names, all of the books to satiate my appetite, cooking classes, granite countertops—at a percentage of the cost? The answer, one that most people just don’t believe, is that I can. I am a firm believer that I can do and have whatever it is that I desire, and I will never pay the price that most do. I call this Frugal Decadence, and it is the life that I choose to lead.
Embrace Frugal Decadence With Me
Whether or not you are reading my blog because you need to save money, or because you want to save money doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are here, reading, delighting in my writing and hopefully learning some things along the way. Frugal Decadence has become a way of life for me, and I hope that you will come to find its merits, and realize that you can live this way as well.
A Few More Details
I am from Lancaster County, PA, born and raised on a dairy farm. I graduated from Washington College, and am currently an environmental investigator for the State of Texas. I also have experience in business and marketing. I live in Houston with my husband Paul and our cats Lyla and Danny Boy.