Lifestyle Tip #5: Pay Yourself First

pay yourself first

In theory, I’m a fiscally responsible grown-up. Or at least I think enough of my financial skills to write about them on my blog. I read about a dozen frugality and early retirement blogs regularly, own and have given away copies of “Your Money or Your Life.” I employ the services of a fee-only financial planner, and have never bounced a check or had a bill go into collection. I’m the chief financial officer of our household.

But I’ve got a dark secret.

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Lifestyle Tip #4: Use Amazon Prime

We’ve covered uniforms, gear bags and meal plans. This week’s edition of how I keep my head on straight: I rely heavily on the service known as Amazon Prime.

Is this blog becoming a place for paid shilling? No, Amazon didn’t pay me to write this. And yes, it’s true that if any of the tens of readers of this blog sign up for a Prime trial or use my affiliate links, I’ll make a buck or two. But I’m not such an easy endorser. Amazon Prime has made my hectic life much easier in so many ways, any one of which could be worth the $99 annual price.

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Lifestyle Tip #2: Make a Meal Plan

Desperate times call for desperate measures. Yesterday evening, I ran out and got XY some Chinese takeout for dinner before the babysitter came over. Why? Because we couldn’t get into the kitchen to feed the kid. We’ve been having the kitchen floor re-tiled, which is a three-day job. The last-minute scramble, minus the tiles, probably sounds familiar to a lot of working parents. But it’s a very unusual thing for us, by design.

Avoiding situations like last-minute takeout food, with its high cost, extra packaging and often dubious nutritional value, is exactly why we make a meal plan every week.

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