How possessions ruined us and minimalism gave us freedom

Modern Living Room Minimalism

Lured into a false sense of ownership   The amount of possessions you own can actually hinder your freedom. In fact, we have been lured into a false sense of ownership. Your possessions may actually be in charge of you! With credit cards and financing options in abundance, our purchasing power often seems unlimited. Having 0% interest rates make it easy for us to buy desired items and avoid paying interest on them. This better than paying large amounts of interest on purchases, but it is still a dangerous game to play. The items you pay for in the form of credit card debt are not truly yours until they are owned outright. Even after you finish paying off your items, having a hoard of possessions can prevent you from taking steps toward your ideal lifestyle.   Possessions and a stagnant lifestyle   Over the last year my husband and I have realized that we really want to move to a more remote location. Our reasons for doing this are multiple, but one of these reasons is that we would like to live a simpler, more self-sufficient life. This desire to move has made us realize that our life is […]

Easy Chocolate Pudding

Chocolate pudding cover

FOR CHOCOLATE LOVERS   We have a play date supper coming up and they’ve requested that I bring my homemade pizza and chocolate pudding. The kids will love my homemade chocolate pudding because of the deep chocolate flavour and silky texture. That’s something you don’t often find in commercial puddings you buy at the grocery store. This time of year chocolate is one product that you will see on all the shelves leading up to Valentine’s Day. In fact you will see chocolate on the shelves for just about any holiday. If you’re smart you will stock up after the holidays so you have a private chocolate stash all year-long. Everyone loves chocolate right? I know I do! (We know Mr.CBB does too!) In our house we love just about any variety of pudding from pudding cake to fruit pudding for a snack or dessert after a nice meal. As a special treat when my children’s friends come over for a visit I like to make them one of their favourites, homemade chocolate pudding. It’s not only easy to make but you will save yourself some money making homemade pudding over buying store-bought. You will always pay for the extras […]

How to get richer before you retire : The Saturday Weekend Review #109

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RETIRE RICHER IF YOU CAN   No one wants to retire broke and if you don’t want to be that person there are things you can do to make you richer before retirement. How much do you need before you retire? Only you can answer that question because I don’t know what type of lifestyle you want to live or how much debt you will have etc. Talk to your financial advisor for clarification if you have one or make the call yourself.   It’s Your Money   It’s nobody’s business what you do with your money but your own. No one can tell you how to spend it, save it or invest it but you. Believe me when I say some people always stick their nose into the finances of everyone else but their own. I’ve always said that no one will care more about your retirement but yourself. If you believe that then you have already invested time into finding ways to make sure your retirement days are comfortably padded with enough cash to fund what you want and need to do. You earn the money, you do what you want with it. BUT…there will always be someone […]

Our Earning Schedule Is Off To A Surprising Start : January 2015 Budget Update

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A BUDGET PAVES THE WAY   When we create our budget outlook we try to put together a mock earning schedule to estimate just how much money we will earn for the year. We like to think of our earning schedule as the corporate calendar of our empire because we view our income as a business, a family business. That may seem a bit nutty to some of you but tracking our expenses with a budget has really made a difference in our lives. I’m not talking just financially either. The stress factor has gone from “I don’t know if I can find a career” to “We have no debt and I have a career plus 1″. We can’t complain about that.   Our Earning Schedule   Over the years our earning schedule thankfully has only been going up but we are always cautious to never get ahead with our thinking. Our earning schedule is not based on how well our investments will do or whether or not the exchange rate goes up and down it’s merely an estimate of how much we think we will net over the course of the year. In 2014 our net worth went up […]

grocery game monthly challenge

How to Create a Healthy Grocery List: The Grocery Game Challenge #2 Feb 9-15,2015

how to create a healthy GROCERY list

HEALTHY EATING AND YOU   Everyone wants to know how to eat healthy on a budget but many don’t know how to create a healthy grocery list. Today I’m going to share with you just how we go about creating our healthy grocery list. Lately I’ve noticed many people visiting CBB looking for a healthy grocery list or samples of a grocery list so today I will give you both. Keep in mind that not every week is perfectly healthy for us (we do like splurge once in a while) and what healthy is to us might not be to you. I always like to stress that but sticking to the basic food groups is always the best way to go. If you like to meal plan than you pretty much should know exactly what you need to buy for groceries. A basic grocery list is all that is needed when getting started to create your healthy grocery list because it’s just a list. Nothing more, nothing less. If you don’t know how much your grocery budget is or should be that is where you should start before rushing to establish your healthy grocery list. Just like good food takes […]

Statistics and Traps Every Investor Needs to Know

statistics investing

Statistics and Pitfalls for Investors   In the second part of this two-part post on independent investing, we will look at 3 critical investment statistics and the 3 biggest pitfalls to individual investing. If you haven’t had a chance to read it yet, jump back to post one to learn about what investing on your own can do for you. When selecting between the various investment options there are a few key metrics or statistics that are important to keep in mind. These form the foundation for any good comparison between investment assets. Personally, I like to use the filter tool available through my online trading platform to sort by the statistics below. Doing so helps me gauge what appropriate values are and to immediately weed out the less attractive options. Metric #1 – Expenses & the Expense Ratio (Mutual Funds and ETFs)   Possibly the most important investment metric or statistic is the expense ratio. Expenses directly eat into your return each and every year. The expense ratio is the easiest way to determine how much extra you are paying to own an investment.  Any mutual fund or ETF will have a specific expense ratio that shows how much […]

Hungarian Walnut Cake… Moist and Creamy

Hungarian Walnut Cake wm

YOU GOTTA TRY THIS CAKE!   Well it’s coming up to that time of year for swooning, sending flowers to that special someone and even preparing a special meal or dessert. That’s right Valentine’s Day is coming up and this Hungarian Walnut Cake is the perfect treat, especially if you are a walnut lover. In this house Valentine’s Day means the kids coming home and counting how many Valentine’s Day cards they received while my husband and I joke with them until they blush, “ooh lots of girlfriends/boyfriends then.” My husband and I really don’t go overboard buying each other gifts for Valentine’s Day as we tend to leave the excitement to the kids. I do however enjoying making a romantic meal with a delicious dessert and Hungarian Walnut Cake is what we are having this February 14, 2015. Don’t get me wrong in our younger days we went all out buying gorgeous roses, Valentine’s cards, Valentine’s chocolates even sometimes a romantic meal out on the town. If we were to do all that today we’d have to budget this night on the town as a projected expense because Valentine’s Day is costly from the flowers right down to the […]

Did you go overboard for your wedding day? :The Saturday Weekend Review #108

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YOU ALWAYS PAY FOR IT IN THE END   I don’t know why but it happens all the time and it’s not just the women who go overboard for their wedding day, it’s the men too! The headline of a recent online article The Hits and Mrs. of DIY’ing your Wedding Dress captured my attention as I thought what a great idea to save money. Wedding dresses cost a fortune…you know what I’m talking about ladies! The bride armed with a $10,000 wedding budget actually Diy’d her wedding dress for a total cost of $186. Could you imagine making your own wedding dress amidst the chaos of wedding planning? My wife just said no way! (Then again she can’t sew to save her life, I do it) This creative bride also made picnic quilts to put on the ground for their outdoor wedding. What was interesting was her guests later used the quilts to snuggle up by the fire and almost every one was taken home by the guests. The total for the quilts came to $110. By the sounds of it she pretty much made everything she could right down to the wedding flowers. She may seem cheap to […]