I’ve held onto this for over a decade. You can see the wear in the tag and hopefully not the weird stains that mottle the fabric. I received this as a high school graduation present from an underclassman. It’s so soft and fun to play with as I watched t.v. or lounged around with my roommates in college. If anything, I’ve held onto this for so long because of its sentimental value. When I look at it, I think of college and the times I spent with my friends. (more…)
I was under a deadline. After completing all my teacher credential courses, I walked away with a preliminary credential. To turn that preliminary credential (which could expire) to a legit one that I just needed to renew every few years, I had to secure a full time job for at least 2 years. I was given a 5 year window to complete this.
Five years is a long time and it is completely possible to get a job, but getting a job as a teacher is tricky. Also, getting a job you want to stay at and become tenured is also very tricky so I took the safer route. (more…)
Growing up, my focus was chasing the money. I wanted to earn as much as I can as quickly as possible. Hence, I was looking at careers in investment banking and management consulting after grad school. They pay well and have a clear career ladder (I’m going to miss this “ladder” when I hit FI).
This was a Christmas gift from a student a few years ago. I thought the bird looked cute and loved the little gems and red color (Red is my favorite color). My original thought was to attach it to my school keys since a student gave it to me. When he sees it, he’ll know that I really appreciate his gift and I’m putting it to good use. But I never did that. (more…)
When I graduated college in 2009, I really struggled with finding a full-time job and moved back home right after graduation. While hunting for jobs, I took on three various internships/part-time jobs to make money and get some experience under my belt. It wasn’t ideal but I was earning money and I was hoping some internship would lead to a full-time job.
As expected, I wasn’t earning very much. Looking back, I was earning about $1000/month since some of the internships were either unpaid or paid very little. My parents helped by giving me their credit card to use for gas or emergencies. I begrudgingly took it. I didn’t like the help because I really thought I would be able to secure a full-time job out of graduation but I knew I needed their support. (more…)
A small white square keychain with the word “tile” etched across it can help me locate any missing items. We won the Tile at a party two years ago and it’s been sitting in my closet ever since. I’ll be honest and say that I’m a pretty careless person at times. I may randomly throw my keys and phone around and an hour later, I have a mini panic attack because I can’t find these items. (more…)
I’m not afraid to admit it. Our house purchase was more of an emotional purchase than a financial one.
This wasn’t a fixer upper or a foreclosed home. It wasn’t a brand new home but it was move in ready. It wasn’t an especially good deal and the housing market wasn’t down by any means. But we bought it anyways. (more…)
Prior to starting our FI journey, I wasn’t one that would think much about my food expenses. More importantly, I never really took a hard look at what we were spending dining out. I mean, we work hard during the week so why not go out and enjoy a nice meal (or two or three) when Friday night rolls around? Work hard and play hard! Am I right? To add to that, during the weekday I would rarely bring lunch and would buy food with my co-workers. Mrs. Quest was better about bring lunch but it was mainly because her teaching schedule didn’t give enough time to go out and buy food. I saw lunch as a nice way to bond and get out the office. You bet those lunches out in the westside of Los Angeles gets pricey. $15 bucks for a mediocre sandwich–what was I thinking back then?!
I’m a changed man now for several reasons. First, pursuing this FI path required us to look at all our expense categories and optimize it. Secondly, I was getting bored figuring out what to eat for lunch everyday and paying $10-$20 for a meal I sometimes have to scarf down in less than 15 mins. Thirdly, it was pretty unhealthy to constantly eat out and I/we wanted to dial-in our fitness. Lastly, my co-workers and friend introduced me to the sous vide method–a fool proof way to have perfectly cooked protein. (more…)
We often read that you have to save at least 50% of your income to be well positioned to achieve FI. In our journey thus far, we actually have not calculated our savings rates. Additionally, when I read about others, I don’t get a clear sense of whether it’s 50+% after tax, pre-tax, or both. I assume it’s some mixture of both, but we’re going to figure ours out today. (more…)