Sunday, December 7, 2008

Living well for less

The purpose of this blog is to share my ideas on making better decisions with your money. Unlike other personal finance blogs, I don't count pennies. I in fact hate pennies and refuse to receive them most of the time. (Read here about how they cost more than they're worth and why we should take them out of our currency system altogether).

My purpose is to have a nice life without spending a ton of money because it's possible. I have a great wardrobe, I have a bar fully stocked with wine, I have a beautiful place, I throw great dinner parties - and I live on about $3,000 a month in the heart of downtown Washington DC. I do this not because I have to, but because I can, and I'd rather make my money work for me elsewhere in savings and investments.

But part of my advice will be about NOT going overboard with trying to save money. Many things are not worth it - things such as clipping coupons for the grocery store or eating red beans and rice to save some bucks on dinner. I will often make these distinctions as I post on saving and what's worth your time and what's not.

[I will, however, advocate for red beans and rice as an excellent side dish or main dish (if you're a vegetarian - it's a complete protein). My brother and sister-in-law make an comforting, palate-pleasing meal of beans and rice, macaroni, and greens (collard if you like them or spinach or green beans). Fills your belly on cold nights and is savory and delicious. Mixes such as Zatarains or Mahatma are excellent.]

I share this aim of living well with Gwenyth Paltrow, whom you may have heard has a email newsletter and website called "GOOP" that shares information on "nourishing the inner aspect." It's about living a good life simply and with joy in things that matter.

Here are her Christmas gift ideas - most of which are quite affordable.

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