Category Archives: Think

Where to Give this #GivingTuesday

Looking for somewhere to give this Giving Tuesday?

After the holiday weekend where we all took a moment to contemplate our gratitude, it may be a good moment to contemplate something else: That the Thanksgiving holiday narrative many of us white people grew up with was distorted, and very far from the truth.

The holiday, and much of our country, was built upon exploitation, colonialism and continued oppression.

If you’ve never heard this before, here are some helpful truths.

That makes this a great time to give to Indigenous peoples. Not to alleviate your guilt. Not because one small gift will compensate for centuries of harm, violence and dishonesty.

But it is one tiny step in the right direction.

Where to Give

In the US, we are all living on stolen lands. You could takes steps to stop inflicting harm by returning the land you ‘own’ to its original Nation, like this couple in Nova Scotia.

Whether you rent or ‘own’ your own home — but especially if you ‘own’ — you could pay a voluntary land tax to the Nation whose lands you are living on.

You can find out whose lands you are living on with this tool. Then further look into how you can make some small attempt at personal reparations with that specific Nation.

Give Directly

You could also give directly. Here are some direct giving opportunities from the Twittersphere:

 


You don’t have to wait until this time of year.

This is a time of year when we’re all thinking about giving, but don’t let this be the only time of year you attempt to make reparations. Look for these giving opportunities all year long.

20 Irish Gift Ideas Based on Irish Sayings

This post is in collaboration with Etsy.

One of Femme Frugality’s most popular posts is this fun exploration of Irish sayings.

So this holiday season I wanted to bring you all a gift guide featuring a lot of the sayings from one of your favorite posts! Plus a few new ones just for fun.

Etsy has a holiday sale going on this week, where may sellers are offering up to 60% off. Be sure to take advantage while it lasts!

20 Irish Saying Gifts for Black Friday 2022

Before you click checkout, make sure you check each store’s ‘Announcement’ section for extra coupon codes for Black Friday savings.

 

1. A fool and his money are soon parted.

vintage bank showing a red-headed irish boy with his pockets turned out. Behind him is a wallet with a coin slot, and beneath his feet the text reads 'a food and his monoey are soon parted'Price: $24.31
Where to buy: BlendedSplendid

Ohmigosh.

Check out this awesome vintage piggy bank! There’s a coin slot in the wallet behind him, and a great reminder beneath his feet lest you be tempted to splurge.

 

2. May the road rise up to meet you.

Wooden keepsake box with Irish poem sketched in laser with shamrocks surrounding "May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face; the rains fall soft upon your field, and until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hands."Price: $30.00
Where to buy: LyonCraft

This keepsake box makes a great gift with one of the most popular Irish blessings etched beautifully on top.

 

3. May your home always be too small to hold all of your friends.

Hand towel with embroidered house and sheep reading, 'May your home always be too small to hold all of your friends."

Price: $16.00
Where to buy: LindasEmbroideryShop

I love this sweet blessing and the beautiful embroidery on this hand towel.

 

4. As above, so below.

Framed print with an upright tree mirrored by an upside down tree. Between, the two root systems intertwine in a sprial. Text reads "As above, so below."Price: $14.62+
Where to buy:
OghamTree

Loving the simplistic artwork and sentiment on this print.

 

5. Two people shorten the road.

Upright chalkboard sign with ornate frame reading 'Two people shorten the road.'Price: $75
Where to buy: FalcoDesignsandGifts

I love this one for weddings. It makes me think about other areas of my life as well, such as my partnership with Joyce on the podcast. We probably couldn’t do it alone, but together, we can both tackle the work so much more quickly!

 

6. You’ll never plough a field by turning it over in your mind.

print hanging on a wall that reads 'You'll never plough a field by turning it over in your mind. Irish Proverb"Price: $5.20
Where to buy: SantaClaraDesign

This can apply to so many areas of life, but absolutely personal finances. You’ll never reach your goal if you just vaguely daydream about it; you have to take action. Only then can you see your goals and dreams fulfilled.

 

7. Life is like a cup of tea. It’s all in how you make it.

Print hanging on a rock wall reading "Life is like a cup of tea. It's all in how you make it. Irish proverb"Price: $17.33+
Where to buy: IrelandWithLove

Attitude can go a long way, and we all take our tea differently!

 

8. A good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures for anything.

Print that reads "A good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures for anything. Irish Proverb" Price: $5.01
Where to buy: HeyTheHomebodyClub

It’s so true, though.

 

9. The older the fiddle, the sweeter the tune.

Print with a picture of a violin in the background that reads 'The older the fiddle, the sweeter the tune. Irish proverb'

Price: $4.19
Where to buy: BohoBlissArt

A la Sarah Jessica Parker’s recent sentiments, getting old is not bad.

 

10. The days are long, but the years are short.

Wooden board with clip for photo. Below the photo slot, it reads "The days are long, but the years are short."Price: $19.95+
Where to buy: 213Designs

When you’re raising kids, sometimes it takes everything you’ve got to make it through the day.

But when you look back, you’ll wonder how it all went by so quickly.

Treasure those long days while they’re here, and commemorate them with this photo board!

 

11. Every man is sociable until a cow invades his garden.

pillow with cow with crown flowers leaning over a garden. Beneath it reads "Every man is sociable until a cow invades his garden."Price: $3.50
Where to buy: SouthernHeavenStudio

We have good days. We have off days. C’est la vie.

 

12. Good friends are like four-leaf clovers: Hard to find and lucky to have.

Tiered serving tray with various baubles on it, including the centerpiece: A small, thick wooden sign that reads "Good friends are like four-leaf clovers: Hard to find and lucky to have."Price: $12.99
Where to buy: WRCraftStudio

So stinking sweet. And so darn true. When you have those good friends, hold onto them.

 

13. It’ll be grand.

Painting of wildflowers overlaid with the words 'IT'LL BE GRAND'

Price: $7.46
Where to buy: NoopDesign

Ah, sarcasm. <3

But it’ll probably be alright in the end.

 

14. What’s the story, horse?

framed print leaning against a white wall. print reads 'WHAT'S THE STORY HORSE?'

Price: $7.47
Where to buy: PrintableArtIreland

This is like saying, “What’s up?”

Except you might get a bit more of an answer than, “nmu?”

 

15. Cead Mile Falite

Bronze-covered medallion with a harp in the middle. Around the edge of the circle is written the words "Cead mile failte.' Medallion is sitting on a black slate tile, which is hanging on a wall.Price: $21.16
Where to buy: Killyliss Studio

This hanging plaque translates to ‘A hundred thousand welcomes.’

 

16. How to say cheers in Irish.

Slainte mhaith!

Slate coasters with engraving of shamrock and the words 'Slainte Mhaith' which means cheers in Irish.Price: $25.16
Where to buy: BRVOGlass

 

17. A good start is half the work.

Tús maith, leath na hOibre.

Cartoon drawing of a circle of flowers on a blue background. Inside it reads "Tús maith, leath na hOibre" which means 'A good start is half the work' in Irish.Price: $2.49
Where to buy:
BiddyBellDesign

18. What is seldom is wonderful.

An rud is annamh is iontach.

Yellow shadow box leaning against a wall. White text printed on glass reads 'An rud is annamh is iontach.' which means 'What is seldom is wonderful' in IrishPrice: $10.82
Where to buy: Scealbeagdesigns

19. Life is Strange

Is ait an mac an saol.

white print in a wooden frame. Drawing of leaves wrapped around a circle in black in. Black text reads '

Price: $14.62
Where to buy: OghamTree

20. How to Say Merry Christmas in Irish

Nollaig shona!

Pine cones and red-threaded white ribbon sitting next to a white star decoration that reads 'Nollaig shona' in red water-based ink. This means "merry chirstmas" in IrishPrice: $4.33
Where to buy: OneWayDublin

Budgeting at the End of the World

The following is an anonymous submission from a Femme Frugality reader.

person with blonde hair laying face down on the bed with eyes open.

 

DEPRESSION: Okay, everyone’s asleep. You finally have an hour to yourself. Boot up the laptop.

ANXIETY: Yes, boot up the laptop. Your one thing to get done today was the budget and you haven’t done that yet.

DEPRESSION: But they did a million other things. They need some time to take care of themselves. I don’t want to see Excel spreadsheets or any other harbingers of stress.

You better pull up Netflix when that thing finally turns on.

ANXIETY: Budgeting is taking care of yourself. And they haven’t even set one this month. You just keep making them binge watch TV shows, wasting away what precious little time we have.

DEPRESSION: Their therapist says you process trauma through art, and that TV is an acceptable form of art.

ANXIETY: You’re doing that thing where you use the therapist out of context to justify procrastination as self-care.

DEPRESSION: And you’re doing that thing where you nullify what the therapist says so you can take over and ruin our lives.

(sigh)

Listen. They haven’t seen a human being outside their family in over two months. There was that brief window this Spring, and even then you made us play things super tight. Before that it had been seven months.

Since HUMAN BEINGS. We’re indulging in the escapism.

(clicks on Netflix icon)

————————————FIVE DAYS LATER—————————————

ANXIETY: Alright. We’ve done your thing for long enough. It’s time to do mine.

DEPRESSION: But they’re kind of feeling a tiny bit better. You stress them out so much.

ANXIETY: I stress them out because there is stuff to stress about. You’re just ignoring it. They feel better, but everything is about to fall apart because they’re not paying attention.

They don’t even know what day of the week it is anymore. They’re not going to be feeling better for long.

DEPRESSION: The entire world is falling apart. What do you expect them to do about it? Are you gonna make that stop, too?

ANXIETY: No, I’m not. Everything’s terrible and is going to continue to be terrible.

But what they still need to write a budget. Now.

(opens Excel)

————————————THREE HOURS LATER—————————————

ANXIETY: Oh, no. You can’t stop now. You’re only halfway through!

DEPRESSION.: But they’ve been at this for so long.

ANXIETY: They’ll continue until it’s done. Sit down.

MOTIVATION: Maybe it’s okay to be proud of getting half of it done. That’s how they got out of debt that first time: One single penny at a time.

ANXIETY: Where have you been?

DEPRESSION.: What are you doing here?

MOTIVATION: You are both so extreme it’s obnoxious. They just need a routine and to log their progress.

ANXIETY: But there is no routine! Everyday something new and awful happens that needs to be addressed right away.

And they’ve got 50 mental tabs up in the background that are all important, too. They just keep getting pushed back by each latest disaster.

MOTIVATION: So we’ll make a routine. You’re ridiculous for thinking they’re going to get all caught up in a week.

And you’re ridiculous for making them feel like they have no power at all.

ANXIETY: So we’ll just get all caught up now. Then they can relax.

MOTIVATION: We all know that’s a lie. You just told us about those 50 mental tabs, and there’s no way you’re going to chill until they’re all closed.

ANXIETY: None of you should be chilling. There is a lot of serious stuff happening right now.

MOTIVATION: We’re opening Netflix. They did great. Got half of it done. That’s half more than we had this morning. We’ll get the other half done tomorrow.

ANXIETY: We should be doing that now! Aren’t you going to say anything? You’ve gone suddenly quiet.

DEPRESSION: No, actually, I’m fine with this. I mean, I’ll be back in the morning full force. But as long as we’re bingeing something, I’m good.

MOTIVATION: You and I will have a lot to discuss in the morning.

DEPRESSION: You’re assuming I’ll even let you back in the room.

(clicks on Netflix icon)

Financial Pitfalls Aren’t Always About Money

Today’s piece is contributed by Robyn of A Dime Saved.

A photo where it looks like a woman is falling to the ground on her back from the top of some springtime trees

At first glance, it appears financial problems are primarily about money. But in my experience, most financial mistakes often point to other obstacles. It is usually not about the money.

We all have our experiences and frameworks that have gotten us to where we are. Sometimes our choices are from ignorance. Other times, the reasons behind our behavior may not be as apparent.

How we spend and interact with money is often a symptom of more significant issues. These problems can either lead us to make sound financial decisions or lead us to make terrible choices with our money.

For example, maybe we struggle with talking about money with our partner, or we find that when we get stressed, we eat out more, or, conversely, we struggle with spending money on anything.

To tackle our money problems, we have to get behind the behavior to see what is going on. Creating a budget and living frugally can only get you so far: you must get to the root of the issues.

Behavior Management

Most people can change their money habits temporarily, but the focus should not be on only doing what we think we should be doing.  Soon things settle down, and when the original motivation wains, we will revert to what comes more naturally to us.

True change can only come when we understand the reasons for our behavior. Merely changing our actions will not lead to lasting change.

This is why figuring out the reasons behind our behavior can help us change our actions permanently.

There might be areas where we lack knowledge, and we should pursue educating ourselves on what we don’t know. However, most core money issues are not caused by what we don’t know.

  • Most of us know we should not spend more than we make, and yet on average most of us have large credit card balances, whether because of behavior or necessity.
  • We know that to retire, we need to start saving. However, few people are investing in their 401k’s.

How do people make healthy financial choices over the long term?

Maybe the best place to start is to “fake it until you make it.” But this will not last long-term if we don’t realize our actions result from other feelings/ideas/problems that we need to focus on to change our trajectory.

But to change our behavior permanently, we have to eventually move from the “fake it until you make it” mentality to a place where good money decisions result from a lasting change in our lives.

What Matters Most

There is always a reason behind our choices. We don’t live life doing random things for no reason.

One way to tackle money problems is to take a look at what we want. When we are old and wrinkled, what kind of choices will we be happy to have made?

Things that will matter the most:

  • Our relationships: How connected we are to the closest people in our lives.
  • What we accomplished: Have we worked as hard as possible to accomplish what we wanted to accomplish?
  • Enjoying life: Did our experiences cause us to enjoy life?
  • Memories: Having tons of great memories will help us have a positive perspective on our past.

Things that won’t matter as much:

  • Stuff we purchased: Material possessions we want and don’t “need” can only give us a certain amount of value.
  • The house we lived in: We often get used to the house we live in and learn to enjoy wherever we end up living.
  • How much we earned: How we use our money is more important than how much money we earned. Obviously, earning more money can give us more options, but only if we choose to exercise those options. Likewise, how you spend is more important than how much you spend.

Prioritizing

Looking at what we want to accomplish can help us determine what choices are not leading us down the right path and which choices lead us to what we truly want.

When I think purchasing an expensive TV that I can’t afford will make me happy, it becomes easier to justify spending more than I make and going into credit card debt.

But when I realize this item is not going to add much value to my life and limit my options, it can provide the power I need to make smarter financial decisions.

When I realize that spending money on certain aspects of my life- such as health, education, memories, and things that bring me joy — I can budget for those things appropriately and truly feel at peace with my spending.

Financial problems ultimately come down to us being confused about what we want in our lives and what is worth pursuing.

Weigh the Pros vs. Cons of Our Financial Choices

Asking ourselves this question will help us determine whether this financial decision is worth it:

Will I regret making this decision in the future?

We can’t 100% know for sure how our future self will feel about our present financial choices. But previous decisions can help us determine how repeating those choices will make us feel in the future.

So, in my opinion, this is the best option to figure out how we should move forward right now.

Another way to look at this is to make a document with two columns. In the first column, put the questionable things you want to buy right now.

Then, in the second column, describe things you could do with that money that push you towards your goals instead of purchasing the items in the first column.

By comparing and contrasting the choices directly, we encourage ourselves to think about these decisions from a more logical perspective.

Get Emotional About Your Dreams

Emotion often drives us to make decisions. And this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as having emotions is human.

The trick is to understand the emotions that we experience and how they push us to make certain decisions, and harness those emotions to help us achieve our goals.

We can tap into the power of emotion to push us towards what we really want by getting emotional about our dreams.

Often this is a matter of focusing our energy and time on what we want to achieve and where we want to go in the future.

But you have to know what those dreams are and envision yourself experiencing the emotion of achieving those dreams to tap into this power. This process does the following:

  • Focuses our time and energy on what we want.
  • It helps us make choices that we will not regret in the future.
  • Refills our “energy bar” in pursuing what matters most to us.

Once you truly understand WHY you are acting the way you are, you can change HOW you act. By understanding the emotions and feelings behind our money decisions and using them to make better money choices, we can truly feel happy with the financial decisions we are making.

 

What methods have you used to tackle your financial problems, and what you want to achieve?

5 Habits for Successful Female Business Owners

This post is brought to you and contributed by an outside writer.

Woman sitting at a desk in front of her computer, drinking a cup of coffee.

Being a business owner is not easy.

Being a female business owner is even harder. Society has unfair, unrealistic expectations of women. Women are consistently pushed harder, exposed to fewer opportunities, and paid far less than their male counterparts. This, in part, is why many women become entrepreneurs; they’ve been discriminated out of the traditional W-2 workforce.

Women are expected to do it all and to do it all well. Grant yourself some grace if you don’t always measure up to this unrealistic goal.

Instead, focus on cultivating these soft-skill habits that will help you cope with the unique challenges of being a female business owner.

Confidence

Confidence is one of the single most important personality traits to develop as a female business owner. You may not be able to control every situation, but by trusting yourself and projecting that confidence, more people will believe in you and want to follow you, too.

When you trust yourself, you’ll also be able to judge whether you’re being overly passive in a situation, as we’re often encouraged to act as women. In situations where you’ve been wronged, confidence can help you be more assertive about seeking representation should you ever find yourself needing legal help.

Be Kind to Yourself

If you stand a chance at being successful, you need to get out of your head. Be kind to yourself in the face of failure and humble in the face of victory. The entrepreneurial life can be difficult, so you have to choose to view every ‘failure’ as an opportunity to learn rather than an event you’ll never recover from.

Exercise

Angry that the gender pay gap is not likely to resolve within our working lifetimes?

We are, too.

Working for less is stressful, but it’s a reality we’re all being forced to live in at varying degrees. One of the best ways to beat stress is through exercise, as exercise releases happy hormones and can help maintain your overall health.

The stress is warranted, but it’s going to be there for most if not all of your working career. Dealing with it healthily makes everything a little easier to bear.

Set Priorities and Allow Them to Change

One of the hardest aspects to master when you are a female business owner is the ever-illusive, nearly-impossible-to-truly-obtain-in-real-life balance.

In reality, you’re probably going to need to perpetually assess and readjust your priorities. Work might take center stage one week, while child rearing is front and center the next.

Keep your communication lines open with your employees always and don’t be afraid to delegate.

Goals, goals, goals.

All business owners need their own set of goals. These can be personal or business goals — or even both!

Make sure your goals are smaller and more manageable in the beginning, just until you’ve gained momentum, after that, you can move on to setting (and smashing) any goal you like.

Plan and prepare for how you intend on achieving your goals, that way you will soon find out just how reasonable, and attainable, your goals are.