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A Bounce Back to a ~$150K Best-Ever Net Worth – October 2020 Freedom Update

Last month sure felt dismal. Felt like throwing money into a fire pit, like I wasn’t catching up to my effort. There have been so many ups and down this year that I should’ve known better. But sometimes doubt gets the best of us and it’s hard to keep riding the wave. October was much better. I am putting 30% of my paychecks into my 401k and aggressively...

Booked: A Texas Road Trip to Austin & Big Bend National Park

I don’t post industry news – and as most of the world remains closed to Americans, I’ve withdrawn inward. Instead of planes, I’ve found solace in my car during the pandemic. My last trip was to Arkansas, and that was back in July. I’ve been mostly shut-in, but am venturing out again, feeling more empowered and eager to explore. A wandering soul needs...

Down $4,000 & feeling nervous this month – September 2020 Freedom Update

September is drifting past; Virgo season is over. Summer grass to fall leaves. I feel like I’ve been plugging away – and then I look at the numbers and I’ve actually slipped. This month, I’m reminding myself that progress is slow and steady and every month won’t have big eye-popping gains. Plus, I’m getting three paychecks in October and anticipate...

Progress & setbacks, but up $18K anyway – August 2020 Freedom Update

It’s been a weird month. Financially, things have been great. But I’m getting antsy about the next life phase and been doing a lot of “hanging in there” recently. I had the idea to buy a little house in the Memphis area and move closer to family. But waiting for things to reopen. And keeping an eye on the upcoming election. And hoping to keep my job...

What’s your credit card and points strategy these days? (The 3 cards I want now)

I’ve always said, “earn and burn.” Meaning earn your points and miles, then burn them in short order. I keep my points balances low – having 100,000 points is a good enough minimum cushion for me. Because with that amount, I can get to most places in business class one-way (and to a few in business class round-trip). It’s also enough for me to begin...

Inventory: The 23 credit cards I currently have – and why

Dang, the last time I did a full credit card inventory was three years ago. Can you believe? Back then, I had 29 cards. These days I have 23, and currently have my eye on three more (ironically, all cards I’ve had before: Chase Sapphire Preferred, Citi Premier, and US Bank Altitude Reserve). Of the 29 I had, some I closed, some were discontinued,...

My first $100K: How to start investing

You know how bloggers say they started their site because their friends kept asking for pointers? This post on how to start investing is exactly that. I posted on Insta and Facebook about my first $100K invested in the stock market for my retirement – separate from the cash I’m setting aside. This milestone happened yesterday! For the first time in...

Reminder: Put a charge on all your credit cards every so often (Oops!)

There are a lot of promotions out there right now. Due to coronavirus, many banks added bonus categories to their cards to encourage more use – which is great! The downside is it becomes easy to forget your other cards. I often recommend downgrading cards with annual fees to their no-fee counterparts to preserve the credit line and history. Older accounts...

My first vacation during coronavirus was really weird

I had to get out. My last trip was to Cabo San Lucas in early March. So for the July 4 “holiday weekend,” I met my mom and stepdad in Heber Springs, AR. It’s a cute mountain town ~45 minutes north of Little Rock. We booked two nights at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Heber Springs. I had plenty of IHG points – and they’re the only pet-friendly...

Condo sold, net worth return to form, & up $35K – July 2020 Freedom Update

Big news first: I closed on my condo on June 29! It hit the market April 22, and I got the offer on May 30. As y’all know, I’ve been on veritable pins and needles waiting for this. Now that it’s over, I’m almost embarrassed at the sheer amount of mental and psychic energy I put into it. It drained me and consumed my thoughts. For the first time since...

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