Budgeting 101| Freebie

Adulting always seems as if you’ll be jumping into this magical fairy tale where you get to paint the walls without permission. Then you get there and realize all the negatives that align with them such as figuring out how to afford all the paint.ha. I’ve learned a lot in a short window of time but budgeting has always been a part of me, it’s fun. A game you cannot afford to lose, quite literally.

Although yes, there are several templates online for budgeting they all did not meet my needs. There’s the family budget where all income is combined and distributed to the various fields it is needed at. The personal  budget where you get to carry the entire load, ick. I wanted something in-between that would track two incomes while providing the data of a personal budget. All while visually stating that our bills were being paid without bouncing from various spreadsheets.

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The data above is strictly an example, all numbers were put into the spreadsheet randomly. This is not an example of a month of my personal expenses.

Why not combine them? What is mine is yours right? Not exactly, although I am engaged now, I do not feel it is fair to look at finances as a joint effort at this stage. My reasoning behind this is the fact that my fiancee makes a significantly higher salary, while I am still currently filling out paperwork to start a part time position.

Separating finances makes sense at this stage and makes it easier to spend without feeling guilty. If I want a pair of shoes I don’t need to ask permission, I simply take a peek at how much I have left over after expenses are met. At the end of the month both expenses and extras will be carried over to a yearly spreadsheet to go towards future goals.

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The first month is filled out randomly for visual purposes.

Something missing? Download the template for free, no email or personal info required, simply click. This is an excel template which means it is specifically formulated. If you have any questions on how to customize it to fit your needs simply leave a comment or message me privately. 🙂   Download | Easy as Pie Budget Template!

I realize not everyone has a bulk of their household expenses included in their rent so do not hesitate to ask if you need assistance altering the template to meet your needs.

XOXO Faith

Birthday Freebies + Haul

We discussed how hauls can be destructive but also informative a bit ago. It is that time of year again… my BIRTHDAY!!! Yay! For my birthday haul this year I have collected even more freebie information for you guys to bank on for your birthday as well as a collective haul of what I received from friends and family.

I am notorious for being a penny pincher since I was little evaluating if I truly needed/ wanted it and was way too cautious about spending. My mother would literally tell me it is okay to treat yourself every once in a while. I was that kid whose first purchase was memorable, a backpack from Clarie’s, yes, I asked why the lady did not give back the money I paid. Instant buyer’s remorse. Whenever I get a deal on something it seems to be my favorite item because it reignites a sense of joy that it originally gave me when I purchased it. Do you feel the same way or am I weirdly unique? Ha

Onto the actual reason you are here, the freebies! I’m not going to take credit for finding some gold mind of deals, Pinterest definitely had a hand in these and there are more and MORE out there trust me. These are just some of my favorite freebies and deals that come around on my birthday.


#1 Redbox

This company has the best perks system, seriously if you’ve yet to join you’re wasting precious pennies. Yes, a movie may only cost a couple dollars but that adds up once it is a frequent habit. They frequently send coupons and free movie weekend codes. On the exact day of your birthday they will send you a code for a free rental of a DVD, blue-ray or game. The code expires in 60 days.


#2 Ikea

Once you sign up for their family program which is free, you are eligible for the birthday freebies. The best part is there is absolutely no minimum purchase necessary. A couple days before the month of your birthday Ikea will send you an email with $15 off your next purchase and a free meal including dessert. Both of these freebies are good for the entire month.


#3 Sephora

Sign up for their membership program, it is free, sign up in stores. I signed up on my actual birthday last year and they gave me the freebie the same day. A couple of weeks prior to the big day they will send you an email regarding the options for the freebie. There is no minimum purchase and it can even be done online. However, I am not sure if they charge shipping since I have yet to test it. The points system also grants you access to other freebies during the year once you rack up points for purchases.


#4 Ulta

Similar to Sephora once you sign up they offer a free gift, only one option and double points during the entire month.


#5 Express

Sign up online or in stores for $10 off during the month of your birthday, no minimum purchase. Their email list often sends discount codes as well as a point system for even more money off.


#6 Box Lunch

An email was sent the first day of the month with $5 off which expired a couple weeks into the next month. Their points system gives store credit, for instance $15 off $30 during a certain period of time based on how many points are racked up. Definitely worth it if you are a fan of their merchandise.


#7 Tarte

Rarely do I see tarte doing discounts so 20% off is definitely a treat, it arrives only a few weeks before the actual date.


#8 American Eagle

Once again not the best discount but it is something… 15% off one purchase during the entire month.


#9 Olive Garden

Umm… free dessert yes please. Yes, many restaurants give out a free mini dessert for your birthday but this one is quite different. Instead of a little one you are entitled to any dessert on the menu that is up to $8.50. The catch is an entree must be purchased in order to cash in, a couple weeks to indulge on this one. Sign up at the table or online.


#10 Michaels

Alright yes, they hand out 50% off one item but it must be regular priced. I feel as if this particular company discounts everything by a couple cents just so you cannot use the coupons. Ha. Their perks system gives out many coupons during the year so it is definitely worth it, the birthday discount is rather meh. They give a one week allowance to use it as well


#11 Abercrombie

Earn double points all month as well as 25% a purchase of $75 during the month of your birthday. Both online and in store eligible, however, during the year they have better sales sent to my inbox so I’d hold off or add it to your birthday list for friends and family to use on you.


#12 Hollister

Spend $75 get 25% off for a month, meh. They are owned by Abercrombie so the discount is the same so sign up but wait for better deals, unless you have a new item in on your list add it for gift givers to save on.


What is your favorite birthday freebie or discount? If you know of others please share down below!

 

For a haul of what I received for my birthday watch below, also see what discounts/ freebies I homed in on.

XOXO Faith

Life Update |Why I’ve been Gone.

A lot has changed in the past couple of months, including moving out for the first time. Needless to say it has been a little stressful at times. Now that I feel somewhat settled I thought it was time to update you all on why I dropped off the internet for a month.

The Move

It’s been a draining process to say the least with moving out for the first time to a new city where everything seems very different from home. The people, the prices, the weather, the roads, the entire system of society here is new. Well I’m not going to candy coat it I’ve learned a lot in this short amount of time in this strange place and I plan on sharing some of them with you soon. Things such as what to look out for when moving out for the first time and how to mentally progress in the process.

The Shiny

Truth moment yes, I got engaged which is exciting in every way but it was not a surprise by any means. While I realize many people who get engaged have some kind of hunch prior to the event mine was more than that. In order for me to feel confident in moving we discussed that we would first get engaged. With that being said there were multiple discussions before this stipulation was placed into the universe. We’d been dating for four years and discussed the idea of marriage within the first couple of months. Nevertheless it was a special moment.

The Place

Whenever I am browsing through YouTube I tend to gravitate towards the Big Life Tiny House tours and really any other kind of house tour. Which is why I wanted to document our first place before it was finished. This is what the apartment looked like the first week I moved in. There were a lot of issues prior to moving which I will discuss with you in incoming content for things to look out for when searching for a place. Things I did not even think of before and I did a lot of research online with Pinterest and other sites. Anyway, check it out below to see the apartment, it’s a cross between a tiny house and regular sized apartment. At least that is what we like to say since there is minimal space.

Have you moved out yet?

XOXO Faith

Buttons & Hook and eye Closures | Beginner

Back in high school I remember my favorite pair of pants button falling off through the mid school day. It was odd since the rivet on the jeans only popped off the top circle portion rather than the entire thing. After trying to press it back on, I scrambled to find anything to keep them closed until lunch when I could change. Eventually, my friend found a safety pin to temporarily fix the situation. It was beyond embarrassing even though only a couple people knew. Now I always keep safety pins in my purse, backpack, car, literally everywhere.

Learn how to fix a broken button on your pants with tips I learned from fashion school. This tutorial is for beginner level sewers, it’s easier than you think. Also, find out how to add extra security to your pants with a hidden hook and eye closure for those pairs you love a little too much.

Have you ever had a fashion mishap in public? Let me know your story down below.

XOXO Faith

Eliminate Stress | Rule of 5

The last couple of weeks I have been allowing my stress to consume me. While I should have pumped the brakes sooner, I am now integrating two strategies into my daily routine. Instead of fixating on multiple stressors for hours at a time this new way of thinking implements a set block of time. Thus, pulling the negative toxic energy away from the task.

Recently, I have been searching for a house to rent in a highly competitive area with an extremely small-time frame to find “the one”. Not to mention all the stressors that piggy back off of moving in general to a new area for the first time nonetheless. What furniture to get, can we afford new furniture at this time? Oh, I almost forget to mention I also need to find myself a job. If you also have multiple stressful events hovering over you try out this method.

First write out the title of each block you have. For the very first ten or so minutes of each block focus on writing out bullet that need to be accomplished in that one block. Breaking down each block into smaller sections makes it easier to see exactly what needs to be done to accomplish each goal.   Whenever something regarding one your blocks pops into your head jot it down on a piece of paper or an e-list to revisit during that specific blocks time. Tasks get accomplished and play time stays well playtime without underlining heavy guilt of wasting time. Set a timer for third to ten minutes to work on each block, if you have the energy to flow into the next block right away go for it, if not take ten to fifteen minutes to rest your mind.

Once your blocks are all titled create a rule of five, five things you will prioritize daily. If you find the idea of five overwhelming slim it down to two to start with. These things may seem monotonies to take the time to write out but it is a daily reminder of your intentions each day. Do not just say exercise daily because that could mean so many different things which leads to a fade out. See below for my rule of five as well as the main stressors clouding up my mind lately. There are multiple ways to create a visual of all your goals this is just one of them make it your own, be creative.

Comment down below what stressors are clouding up your mind?

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Reusable Duster | Easy DIY

Eco friendly products have been around for a while and still I have yet to try any. Similar to other popular items, there always seems to be a settle label “tax”. For instance, items that never had any gluten are suddenly sporting a gluten free sticker and a shiny new price tag. All the fashion trends seem to follow a similar formation of how to raise prices when the demands rises to increase it’s business.

That being said the eco-reusable “tax” makes a little sense since most of the shops make the items by hand in United States. The cost covers high quality materials and fair labor practices, at least that is how most shops are marketing themselves. After searching a couple shops online it had me thinking the ultimate challenge would be to create some of my own reusable products using scraps from other projects that would otherwise be wasted or thrown out. A duster seemed like a good place to start as it is a simple concept of a glorified rag on a stick.

At Marleys Monsters their reusable dusters retail for around $38.00, however the one I make in the video below only cost me $0.97 for two. Having been gifted a ridiculous amount of fabric scraps helped a bit too. If you are not as lucky, head over to your local craft shop and browse their scraps pile, usually they are pretty affordable. The key is to no longer be purchasing and throwing out a numerous amount of swiffer duster heads.

Click below for the full tutorial, you’ll be shocked at how easy it is.

Every little switch helps when it comes to the environment, but no, I am not driving into the whole zero waste vibe full force by any means.

XOXO Faith

The Truth Behind | Fashion Hauls

Magazines, Pinterest, YouTube, and even the various people we cross paths with on the street spark inspiration for new trends, different styles and all things fashion. Recently, it has been brought to my attention that several famous youtubers and social media gurus spoke up about the fact that they buy items simply to use them as content. Fashion hauls are a huge part of this massive consumer issue of want, want, NEED. Titles such as “spending too much at Target” or “massive summer hauls” draw in a large crowd but why?

I can only assume that people love to watch a variety of items they may or may not be interested in buying, I admit I used to watch tons of these types of videos. Then I started thinking do the videos benefit my life in any way? Not really. Often when watching this type of content on repeat it becomes a loop of craving more and more material things. They make you feel like you are missing out if you cannot afford a massive pile of clothing. I love fashion, don’t get me wrong but finding out from the creators themselves that they purchase all these things simply to show off in videos is unsettling. Many believe these hauls are things they truly needed to benefit their wardrobe not just to create content online.

Another negative effect is massive fast fashion consumption. Items that do not survive up to a double-digit wash fall into this category otherwise known as throw away clothing. Without getting to save mother earth, all of it is bad for the environment point blank. Yes, you can still purchase some throw away fashion as it is trendy, just try not to buy massive heaps of it as it goes straight to the landfill. This is the main reason I gravitate more towards classic pieces. Yes, I do still indulge in fun graphic tees but I make sure it will last more than only one season too.

It would be unfair to simply dragb down the fashion communities haul process as some of them are actually education as to speak. If I want to find out what the best type of legging is I can watch a video that reviews different types of them or puts out fitness content views and I am going to expect that their advice is more reliable. Personality coincides with the trust that their fans put in them especially when it comes to brand deals too.

Yes, I will continue to do hauls but they will be more on the review side rather than just a massive show of here’s all this stuff I’ll never wear. Ha. Do you think hauls are harmful or helpful? Do you feel betrayed knowing some youtubers are buying things only to use them as content not because they really enjoy the item.