We rode a Ferry to Nowhere

FeaturedWe rode a Ferry to Nowhere

It’s not something most people prepare for.

When we got there, the realization stopped me in my tracks. At least, it would have…

…had I been riding on tracks, or leaving them.

Regardless, we had travelled by ferry to stay with Allie’s mother on Vancouver island and upon arrival I noticed there was no cell service. Zero. Zilch. Ick, but…no problem, internet sevice will suffice.

Wait, what?! This is grim. Very grim. No Internet either.

Likely the sun will still rise tomorrow (I’m actually cheating here when I sound so confident because it’s been two full days since we landed and the sun hasn’t failed to appear), but sometimes you find yourself in a bit of rough water.

Below are snapshots from our ferry ride that I planned to share with you earlier but it turns out… well, you know.

Enjoy ūüôā

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That feeling when…

…you take another sip of coffee and realize your cup is empty.

What is a Sunday afternoon in winter without a hot cup of Coffee or Tea?

In my family, Sundays are about decompressing from the week. They’re about enjoying peaceful moments… ¬†like rocking my baby daughter to sleep for her nap.

I hope that you get a moment to have a hot cup of whatever you enjoy today!

Happy Sunday!

 

7 smart budgeting tips for 2017

Featured7 smart budgeting tips for 2017

 

Everyone has one. Or at least, should have one since we all have to balance our spending with income. Good money management should be a basic skill that each person possesses.

And yet, money consistently comes out on top as the #1 stress for individuals and families.

Allie and I spent far too long fumbling with our spending and being in and out of debt. Eventually though, by being intentional about it and using the strategies below, we have been able to move our spending well inside our income amount. We have no debt, a growing savings account and we are able to do things like spontaneously going on mini holidays or buying a new smart phone.

Maybe you’re like I used to be; the thought of a ‘budget’ made me feel confined, limited and stressed. Or maybe you’re a rock-star and you’ve got the most detailed and well functioning personal financial operations….

Here are 7 smart budgeting tips that will help you in 2017:

  1. Know your income. Successfully managing your money means only spending what you have.¬†If you don’t know your monthly income you will find it very challenging to stay inside that amount and avoid going into credit debt.

  2. Be extremely detailed. One of the biggest mistakes I used to make in managing money was not being detailed enough. For example, spending $2.08 for a coffee at Tim Horton’s twice a day doesn’t seem like a big deal and you might be tempted to overlook it in your budget. But after 1 month of a coffee twice a day, 5 days a week, you’ve spent $83.20 of whatever you brought in as income. It adds up fast and can put a bigger hole in your budget then you realize.

  3. Communicate.¬†If it’s just you, then this just means to be aware of what you’re spending where and when. But if there are more then 1 person working off the same budget, spending a little extra time sitting down together to make sure everyone is on the same page will save you from blowing the budget without knowing it.

  4. Don’t borrow from next month.¬†I used to do this all the time when I was justifying a ‘one time’ expense that I didn’t want to wait for. It might seem like you’re adding flexibility to your life but in actual fact you’re just throwing next month into bankruptcy. If you can’t fit in this month, try temporarily reducing your spending on something like fast food, so you’ll have extra cash at the end of the month.

  5. Use an app.¬†Budgeting apps can be extremely helpful. Need to budget on the fly, try an app like Mint that tracks your spending and account balances, letting you stay on top of how you’re doing in real time. Or try an app like Apple Numbers to put together your budget on your smart phone while you wait for the bus.

  6. Have an Emergency Fund.¬† Want to know the fastest way to blow up your budget once you get it running well? Unexpected expenses. Having an emergency account (with money in it) will help you manage sudden one time expenses that you can’t plan for.

  7. Aggressively pay down credit Card debt. It might seem like a convenient way to manage expenses but it will cost you. A lot. Most credit cards will charge you 19% interest on any balance you carry. If you took 5 years to pay off a balance of $5000.00, with a monthly payment of 129.70, you will have paid $2782.17 in interest. You can see that it is in your best interest to pay off credit debt and ultimately keep that money in your pocket!

 

Well thanks for taking the time to read through these 7 strategies! If you found any of these helpful or you think of one I missed, please comment below. I would love to hear feedback and I will implement it in future posts.

All the best!

Devastation

Devastation

I wrote this a few years ago after my wife and I experienced the first of three miscarriages.

 

Amelia

I watch the rise and fall

Soft sound of you breathing

Your quiet face peaceful as

The light plays over you sleeping

 

Holding you carefully safe

Your innocent laugh delights me

As I kiss your head and smile

Precious blessing in my arms

 

Running, your curly hair bounces

Radiant in the Spring light

Pulling a trail of dandelion seeds

Floating down to the music of your voice

 

As morning light wafts in,

Opening my eyes to another day

My dreams of you slip away again

And you’re gone away from us

 

You’re home now, you’re home

And your eyes drink in the beauty,

Engulfed in Light’s warm touch

You’re home now and I miss you,

Little daughter I miss you so much

We’ll be there soon, please

 

Don’t change little darling

’cause we’ll be there soon

Remember we’ll see you soon

We’ll hurry there, so soon

 

Daily Prompt: Devastation

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Let’s come to an understanding

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It’s late. At least, it is here.

Hi.

I actually have other stuff to do, but I’d rather be here, with you. I hope that’s not a mistake.

This page is a bit of a mess… I keep eyeing it; wanting to make it look better, wanting to do more. But no. It looks like my office. Barely even utility. I have plans. But for now, I moved to the kitchen table to avoid it all.

Now for that understanding we were coming to… I suppose I’ve been tossing around what to write about. Quite a bit actually. The truth is that I don’t really have it nailed down. What I do know is that it’s nice to have a place to mention things. You know, when you have something you want to tell someone, but it doesn’t fit the situation. Do you understand?

Speaking of paying bills. No, we weren’t? Well, remember the other stuff I mentioned? yeah. Well, speaking of that, I want to talk sometime about budgeting. Nothing scary like you’re thinking; it’s just I have some ideas.

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Had one of those.

I’m having trouble¬†finding a picture of¬†me. Personal? Yes. I just don’t know if it’ll help.

Anyway, thanks. You were super.

See you in a bit.

Charles

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Photographs

freighter

I spent several hours yesterday looking through our home photos. I was looking for pictures I could use as post photos here, but ended up spending hours pouring through memories.

The laptop was set up on the kitchen table along with our old DVD catalogs that I dug out of storage. I found so many little video clips and pictures of our son, Brendan, most of which I had completely forgotten about. There were also many old pictures my wife and I took while on dates or Sunday afternoon walks. As I watched and looked at each picture I was instantly brought back to where and when it was taken, like a time machine. I re-lived the moments. Most of them beautifully intricate in their detail and absolutely laden with emotion.

It was like an all you can eat buffet. And boy did I eat….

Success was a by product of my Memory Binge, but none the less, present. Locating several photos I could use here to Segway into blog posts, I piled them into a folder to pick from as I go. Each photo uploaded to this page was taken by either my wife or myself. Hopefully you find them enjoyable. I do.

Hopefully you’ll be patient with me as I learn where to put everything. I’ll have the ‘about’ tab updated soon!

Charles

 

 

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First Post

kites

It’s interesting the types of emotions the start of a new year brings. To varying degrees, everyone will tend to view the beginning in a slightly (or not) different light… based off their personal experiences and situations. Born out of some degree of¬†ecstatic elation¬†or¬†bitter desolation.

However, despite your particular facet, There is the inherent excitement that sparks and then lingers in our imagination; not unlike the massive starburst of a firework exploding after the countdown. Something about our nature leaps at the chance to be free from the rock solid earth of our everyday experience. To dream. To break free and soar on currents of previously unimagined possibilities.

Inevitably though, the brilliant embers of sky high potential run out of momentum and fall to earth, extinguished and soon forgotten. What happens next is what seperates the ordinary from the extraordinary.

The ordinary; a dismal infusion of necessity steeped in day after day.

The extraordinary; birthed out of unwavering determination and purpose. The truely EXTRAordinary only comes about by a metamorphasis. The crushing fusion of select elements morphed into something valuable by the unstoppable force of will and time.

Here we are, you and I, standing at the edge of unrealized potential. Goals. Dreams. Desires. May this year, 2017, be witness to the realization of our most epic imaginations! Heres to growth, success and the extraordinary in your life and mine!

Happy New Year! Please feel welcome here. More to come.

Charles