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Buying into Baby

There’s so much Stuff to buy for your kid!! Welcome to the pressure I’ve felt for the last 7 months. And I’m not talking on my bladder. No. Some people call it ‘nesting’. I call it a prime opportunity for our consumer culture to hoist a bunch of unnecessary crap your way. Short term crap, most of it. With an expiration date of a few years, if not months or even weeks in the the case of those newborn clothes. This is stuff you gotta have. At least some of it, but we ain’t talking life and death and heirlooms here. Oh, I’m sure I’ll tuck away a couple outfits and blankets for posterity. When it comes to breast pumps, nursing pillows, and pack-n-plays though, what do I much care?

The problem is people get a little nutty about baby stuff. Read more

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Grocery Spending: Redemption

That title makes this sound like the sequel to a bad action movie. And maybe it is. The first installment being the act of spending way too damn much, consistently on groceries. (Reference $750.) After some time away, we return to our storyline only to find our heroine (that’s me) singing a new, improved, slightly different tune. One that sounds a lot more like $500 a month.

That’s right. Grocery spending is down $250/month for the 3rd month running. That’s a big frickin’ deal, folks. Huge! $750 reprioritized dollars, SO FAR. Yet, I have not become an extreme coupon-er. I am not shopping at Safeway. Our changes have actually been quite small, cumulative in nature, and went surprisingly according to plan. Slow, time consuming, and somewhat bumpy plan, but one that’s coming together nonetheless. Read more

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The Pet Gene

Some people do not have pets. For many of us, this may be a difficult concept to grasp. Let me explain.

There are people who do not have dogs or cats. Or horses. Or chickens. Or even that whole foreign land of guinea pigs, rabbits, lizards, and fish. They do exist. These pet-less individuals are amazing. Baffling, and amazing. No animal husbandry, of any kind. What must that be like? I bet their lives involve a lot less poop than mine does. Poop and responsibility. With an increase in money. And more room on the couch. That doesn’t sound so bad.

Of course, there’s also less warm dog. Warm dog with wet nose and contented sigh. Maybe a stray snore here or there. Ever-ready companions, whether it be for adventure or just to hang out in the yard. Non-human creatures that know me, communicate with me, rely on me, and are a distinct part of my life.

How do you quantify their value to people without ‘The Pet Gene’? Read more

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The Target Demographic

I recently found myself in the rather awkward situation (for me) of having to define Dogs or Dollars. Repeatedly. To people who’d never read it. And didn’t know me. Huh. There’s a task that shouldn’t be hard. And sorta was.

Mumble, bumble, leaving corporate servitude, uhhhh saving money, erm growing shit, and how ’bout those dogs? Personal journey? Anyone? I conveniently managed to put myself at the intersection of two of my favorite bloggers: Northwest Edible Life and Mr. Money Mustache. Both of whom, I had the distinct pleasure of being in the same room with at that particular moment in time. Read more

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