Friday, August 05, 2016

living on one income + groupon goods

this is a sponsored post, but all opinions are 100% my own. 

i've now been out of work for a month, and we are slowly adjusting to living on one income. so far, it hasn't been that big of a change because we have the money we made from selling our house. however, most of that money will be used for grad school, so we can't really use it as a cushion and we are working on re-creating our budget to accommodate no longer having two sources of income.

prioritizing what you spend your money on is really a huge thing. at first it seems like a really simple concept, but there are definitely a lot of gray areas. and because it's so personal and different for everyone, there is no one size fits all. so this is where we are - learning how to prioritize our money and how we want life to look the next 2 years while i pursue my masters degree. 

we knew we would be spending more money up front as we settle in, because there are a lot of hidden costs that come with moving. luckily we had enough furniture to fill up our apartment, but we did need to buy a few things that we didn't have because they just weren't needed at our old house. for instance, we now have a guest room since we are living away from all of our family and friends, so we needed to buy an extra bed and mattress. we also have a third bedroom which i've made into an office for me to have a focus area once school starts, so i needed to get a desk. in our kitchen we have an island which we purchased 2 stools for to use as extra eating space. 

luckily we found some great deals and got all of these big furniture pieces for a reasonable price. we don't want to spend a ton of extra money (which is why i've been making things like the crafts in the picture above), but we did want to get just a few quality things to spruce up the place since we will be here for 2 years. one place to look for quality home decor for a good price is groupon goods. i knew that groupon had local deals and coupons, but i'm just now discovering their goods! for instance, i have my eye on this metal photo print possibly for our apartment! i love this easy way of saving money from groupon! i can't wait to get the last few things to make our apartment really feel like home! 

how do you use groupon to save money?

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

When Calls the Heart | Season 1 free with pre-order of Season 3

remember a few months ago when i blogged about Fish Flix, a website that offers wholesome Christian movies and tv shows? well, they have a promotion going on right now that is really neat! when you pre-order When Calls the Heart Season 3 DVD set (on sale for 40% off right now), Fish Flix will send you Season 1 for free! so if you already love the show, you can gift Season 1 to a friend, or if you are new to the show you can try out Season 1 and get hooked on it before Season 3 is released in October. 

i love promotions like this, because i am always looking for more tv shows to own on dvd! we don't have cable, Netflix, Hulu or anything like that because we really don't watch that much tv. however, we do love watching seasons of tv shows back to back. we own all of the episodes for about 5 tv shows, and generally just cycle through them when we are in a tv watching mood. i love seasons of tv shows, because it is kind of like a book where it lasts for a really long time so i can really invest in it. i am not such a huge fan of movies because 2 hours is just too quick! 

since school doesn't start for me until mid August, and i finally have the entire apartment unpacked and organized(YAY!), i have been wanting to find a new tv show for me to watch during the day when i just want to take a break. i keep the funny and action packed tv shows for when me and Thomas want to enjoy something in the evenings, but sometimes i just want to watch something with a little more drama, and When Calls the Heart is just that! set in 1910, a young teacher from high society moves to a small coal mining town for her first teaching job and learns to love the town and her new life. plus it has Aunt Becky from Full House in it, so that is a plus too! 

the Season 3 box set includes some really cool features as well! for instance, you can watch the show as individual episodes, or as 5 feature films. there are small differences between the 2 formats, so that is a fun thing to look for! there are also 3 bonus discs that include things like behind-the-scenes, interviews, trivia games, and more! 

Fish Flix is also running another promotion where you can win a $100 gift card to Fish Flix. to enter, you need to leave a review of Season 3 on this page, and then email the username to that you used on your review. the drawing for the gift card will take place on September 1, 2016. so, if this is something that appeals to you, go ahead and pre-order or leave a review if you already love the show to win a gift card! 

what are some of your favorite tv shows that you own on dvd?

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

last week, i quit my job.

i actually turned in my resignation back in April, but this past Thursday was my last day of work. i announced back in April that i was leaving Accounting to pursue my Master of Social Work. the first step to that plan is here at last - i have quit my job & we are moving to a new city this weekend!

you know how when something big happens, like a birthday or a wedding, people ask you if you feel any different? almost always the answer is "no" because it is just another day and you really feel just like the same person you were yesterday. well, today is different, today feels different for me. today i feel free for the first time in a long time. today i feel excited about my tomorrows. today i feel like me again. 

i've needed to read the words of my last post over and over these last few weeks because they have been full of really hard and challenging days. the kind of days where you arrive home, and you just have nothing left to give. the kind of days where you have to learn how to distance yourself because things are affecting your life in a negative way. the kind of days where you feel like you can't shed one more tear, and you can't show up for one more day. the kind of days where you are forced to learn to extend grace, even when you really really don't want to. but today, those days are over at last. 

if i'm honest, these last few years have been hard and challenging. for the longest time i was afraid to admit that i didn't like the corporate world, that it was draining the life out of me. i could hear "you just need to be an adult" and "buck up and get through it" every time i had these thoughts. i started thinking maybe this is just what being an adult is. maybe this is how everyone feels inside.

and yes, growing up and being an adult does mean bucking up sometimes, and sometimes you do have to force yourself to get through things. but there is a difference in hard situations that grow you, and life-draining situations. i've come to realize that these last few years really have drained the life out of me.

i think it was subtle and slow at first, that it just felt like the norm to me for so long. only looking back on it now do i realize how much the strain has changed me these last few years. only now do i see the slow fading of joy and the way a cloud of stress rained over me constantly. that sounds depressing and dramatic, but it is really hard to explain the situation and toxic environment. i have definitely felt a huge weight lift since getting out of it. 

there is so much freedom in being able to admit that now. there is freedom in realizing something just isn't working and taking action to change it. there is freedom in choosing to chase my dreams and Jesus instead of settling for something less than that. there is freedom in taking back my life, and doing what is best for me. there is freedom in making a change that will better my life and relationships. there is freedom in daring to hope.

that is my biggest take away from these last few years. hope is a choice. i can choose to hope in tomorrow, even if today is tough to get through. i can choose to hope in Jesus because He tells me that i can hope in Him. i can choose to hope in the future, even if i can't see past today. i can always choose to hope. and hope is always there waiting for me, in the arms of Jesus.

what are you daring to hope for today?