Liebster Award!

liebster-awardGuys, I was recently nominated for the Liebster Award!!! The Liebster Award is passed around the blogging world so that we can all get to know each other a little better. Woohoo!

I was nominated by Budget Loving Military Wife, who is a great role model in reaching her goal to pay down her mortgage quickly and live frugally, all while dealing with the ins and outs of the military system. Kudos to her, and thank you so much for nominating me!

If you are nominated for a Liebster award this is what you should do:
1. Post the award on your blog
2. Thank the blogger who presented the award to you and link back to their blog
3. Answer the questions given to you by the nominator
4. Nominate 5 to 10 bloggers with less than 200 followers
5. Create 10 questions for your nominees to answer
6. Notify your nominees by posting on their blog

The questions I received:

What is your greatest fear?
Death or severe illness within my family. Secondary fears include: not being able to move near my parents (or them not being able to move near us) in the next 10 years, a financial emergency, or being miserable in my job forever.

What is your greatest dream or “purpose” in life?
I would love to travel, but I think my greatest “purpose” would probably be a desire to become the best person I can be.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment?
That’s a really tough question! I’m very proud of earning two Masters degrees, and I’m proud that I’ve made a difference in some students’ lives, but I think that perhaps my greatest accomplishment is just generally being a positive person.

Do you have a must-see television show? If so, what is it?
We don’t have cable, but the latest show we’re hooked on is Orphan Black. I also love Sherlock and House of Cards. Shows that are no longer in production that I love are Battlestar Galactica, Seinfeld, Veronica Mars (but, yes, that movie is coming out soon!), Star Trek (TNG), Chuck, and, of course, Arrested Development.

What is your favorite and least favorite part about having your own blog?
I love that it’s a way to keep me from bugging my husband from talking about finances all the time. Rehashing it over and over again isn’t really healthy or productive, and he is sweet to listen to me talk about it, but having this blog allows me to dump out all that’s swirling around in my brain concerning money. We talk enough about money (and our plans about paying off debt, saving, etc.), but I was getting a little intense for a few months, and I feel that the blog has helped me back off of that conversation a bit with him.

My least favorite is probably the fact that I’m using the absolute cheapest version of a blog (free WordPress.com site), and that means I don’t have much flexibility in changing the look of my site. At this point, I’m not overly concerned with that (because I could imagine my draining an entire afternoon on reformatting the site), but some day I might decide to take the plunge and pay the piddly amount it would take to be able to change it around.

Where is the best place you have traveled?
I believe that the place doesn’t always matter as much as the person you’re with. My favorite place was Greece, where my husband and I went on our honeymoon. I loved the history, the beauty, and the time we spent together exploring something new. My second favorite place, though, was England, where I went with my best friend from college – it was fantastic to live there for a couple of months, but having my best friend there was what made it amazing. (Best friend, if you’re reading, I love you!)

Favorite book? and why?
So hard to pick just one, but I’ll pick the one that pops into my head most rapidly: The Secret History, by Donna Tartt (the famed author of the more recent book, The Goldfinch). I read both, of course, but there’s something so haunting and amazing about The Secret History that I can’t help but read it over and over again. I’ve read it at least once a year ever since I was in college (which, um, was a while ago).

If you won $1,000,000 but couldn’t spend a dime on yourself, how would you spend it?
I would pay off all of my family’s debt for them. Then I would pay off my close friends’ debt for them. Then I would put money aside into my nieces’ and nephews’ and friends’ kids’ college funds (am I allowed to put money into my own kid’s fund, or does that count as spending it on myself?!).

What do you think is the greatest financial challenge facing Americans today (ex: low incomes, too much debt, poor financial  management, lack of retirement savings, lack of any type of savings, etc.)?
I think that our culture here glorifies a lifestyle that is unattainable without acquiring debt. Taking on debt is considered a normal part of life – mortgages and student loans are usually touted as “good debt” (I’ve been seeing a lot of posts regarding this recently) and it’s just a matter of course that we take those on. I still believe that student debt is an investment in oneself, but I am starting to understand that my husband and I could have worked a lot harder to find additional ways to pay for grad school. Even besides this “good debt,” we’re taught that we “deserve” treats (the much-abhored “latte,” — okay, I don’t abhor them, but other PF bloggers do — a new article of clothing, a new car) so taking out a car loan or accruing credit card debt is just a way of life. If one can learn to save a certain percentage of income yearly by changing one’s mindset (not an easy feat, we all know), then some of the other financial problems we face can be at least somewhat alleviated.

What has been your greatest financial “splurge” to date?
We bought a fridge to replace our broken one – but we didn’t buy the most financially prudent model – we got one (on sale) that is stainless steel, has French doors, a separate drawer, and a pull-out bottom freezer. We didn’t need to. But we considered it an investment in our home – one that we could at least enjoy before we have to sell it someday. But….. we really didn’t need to splurge on that.

And now for my nominations! Honestly, guys, I’m not sure how many followers you have, so I just looked for blogs I enjoy! I know some of you have more than 200 followers…. I hope that’s okay….

Blogging for Balance

Fit is the New Poor

Four for Cheap

Well-Heeled Blog

Drawing During Naptime

And here are my 10 questions (some pilfered from above):

1. What do you hope a typical day in your life will look like in 10 years?

2. What does your dream house look like? Where is it?

3. What is currently your main goal or purpose in life?

4. What one thing in your daily life consistently makes you happy?

5. What one thing in your daily life consistently frustrates you?

6. What is the first book that pops into your mind when I say, “What’s your favorite book?” Why?

7. If you received $1,000,000, what would you do with it?

8. If you could give your younger self a piece of advice, what would it be?

9. Why did you start blogging?

10. What is one of your proudest accomplishments?

I hope my nominated bloggers will have time to respond to this. Thank you again to Budget Loving Military Wife for nominating me!

Thanks for reading!

– M.

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