Friday, August 21, 2009

LINKS IN THE TIME OF FORECLOSURE: How to live in a lighthouse & more

So you know I'm on Twitter, right? Yes! Right here. I mention this because today's links are all courtesy of Twitter. Links I found while reading others' Tweets. Should I call them Twinks? Or Litters. Twinks. Anyway...

Lighthouse Living

Remember how I wrote about wanting to live rent-free in a lighthouse? Well, these people found a way to do just that. They are the current lighthouse keepers at the Seguin Island lighthouse on Seguin Island in Coastal Maine. How did they find this opportunity? Why, The Caretaker Gazette, of course. (I SWEAR they are not paying me.) Island Caretakers - The Caretaker Gazette Blog via @housesitter

The Recession Hits Sesame Street

Have you heard the news? Elmo's mom lost her job! Fictional jobs are not even safe in this economy!

Actually, I think this is a really brilliant idea. Why? Because kids don't read blogs. Do they? No, I really don't think so. They watch Sesame Street. What a great opportunity to introduce your child to the changes happening all around them if not in their own home.

From the Daily Finance article":
...the message of Families Stand Together: Feeling Secure in Tough Times, an excellent program airing next month on PBS, is that Elmo's situation is not unusual, especially with the jobless rate expected to top 10 percent before the end of the year.

The producers of the show, which features Al Roker and Deborah Roberts, created a commendably realistic -- though not depressing -- look at the recession's impact on all sorts of families. According to the non-profit Sesame Workshop, Families "aims to help families with children, ages two to eight, experiencing difficult economic circumstances by offering strategies and tips that can lead to positive outcomes for their children's physical and emotional well-being during this tough economic climate."

It goes on to mention that the residents of Sesame Street even host a big garage sale to make some extra money and that Elmo starts his own Lemonade stand.

This link is courtesy of "Living with Less" - the human side of the global recession by writers and editors of The New York Times. @livingwithless

60 Ways to Really Save Money on Groceries

I don't know why, but I just hate clipping coupons. The time it takes seems to be way more than it's worth in the end. I know people will disagree with that, it's just my sticking point with coupons. That's why I like this post - How to Save Money on Groceries from Mommy Coddle. (I found Mommy Coddle via The Lovely List @thelovelylist.)

The list comes from Mommy Coddle readers and I find it incredibly useful. I've been thinking about this a lot lately as our move to the island draws nearer. I keep thinking, we're going to have to cook A LOT MORE. I'm both excited and nervous about that. It's a shift, but one I've been wanting to make for a long time. Anyway, check out the list of 60 reader suggestions on how to save money on groceries.

As a sampler, these are 3 of my favorites:

2. Taking a cue from many of our grandmothers, come up with a meal plan--like Pizza Friday (homemade), eat out Saturday, Grill Sunday (and grill some extras), Monday Soup and Salads (use some of the grill extras), Tuesday Fancy Sandwiches (like clubs and panini), Wednesday Pasta, Thursday Meat and Potatoes.

21. Buy a whole chicken. Cook it in the crockpot, then debone, chop and freeze for use in tacos, enchiladas, sandwiches, etc.

22. Have breakfast for dinner. It's usually cheaper.

And last link of the day...

Do you eat debt for breakfast? This Guy Does!

His name is Adam Baker and he's at war with debt. He eats debt for breakfast. His slogan is "Get out of Debt... Get Into Life." And he documents his journey and shares such useful information on his blog Man Vs. Debt! What can I say, I'm inspired! Apparently the birth of his daughter had him reevaluate the way he was living, spending and carrying debt. That was the turning point for him and when he declared war and wrote an actual declaration. It's genius. Bob and I should do the same thing. I've mentioned this to him. I think I'll print this declaration and read it to Bob at some point this weekend to inspire one of our own.

Here is the Man Vs. Debt declaration of war:
We, the leaders of the Baker household, formally DECLARE WAR on Debt!

Let it be known that we will not stop until Debt is eradicated from our lives! We will not win every battle, but we WILL win the War. There will be no negotiations, there will be no cease-fires, there will be no treaties of any sort.
We pledge the following:

* We shall cancel all of our credit cards and shall not apply any new credit.
* We shall track every penny we spend.
* We shall spend less than what we earn.
* We shall “give every dollar a name, on paper, on purpose at the beginning of every month.”
* We shall use strictly cash for variable monthly expenses.
* We shall constantly strive to cut spending and fixed expenses.
* We shall dip into our emergency fund only during true emergencies, after all options are fully exhausted.
* We shall never have a car payment.
* We shall rent until the war is over, we have 20% down, and we can afford a 15-year fixed mortgage.
* We shall never co-sign for a loan, for anyone… anywhere.
* We shall never loan family or friends money. If we choose to give, it will be a gift.
* We shall utilize books and blogs to study our enemy and develop our strategies.
* We shall invest in ourselves and our earning potentials.

Declaration of War reaffirmed as witnessed on March 27th, 2009
Inspiring, right? What would you pledge?

Thanks to @wisebread for tweeting this. By the way, Wisebread also has a wonderful website all about "Living Large on a Small Budget."

Photo credits:
-Lighthouse image is courtesy of The Caretaker Gazette
-Elmo is via Blog of Wishes
-The cherry tomatoes is a photo I took of the beautiful tomatoes from my mom & Tom's garden! Hooray for home-grown.
-The picture of Adam & his daughter is from his site Man vs. Debt

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Joy said...

Last spring my husband and I started eating lunch at various restaurants on the island. It was fun trying out different places and getting in on their specials. Herb's on Spring St. has a special on Friday: buy one and get the second meal half price. Once tourist season subsides, it's never really over, restaurants clear out and you can actually get a table. There's not a whole lot of restaurants here, mostly cafe-type places, small, limited menu, but nice.
Fall is lovely here. You can take a picnic lunch to one of the beaches or lakes and just relax. The whales should still be around in October so you could always sit on one of the picnic tables by the water at Lime Kiln State Park and watch the whales, seals, birds, etc. What an adventure is in store for you!

Love in the Time of Foreclosure said...

Joy, thank you so much for giving us these little glimpses into life on the island. We are so looking forward to being there and can only imagine the adventure it will be!

By the way, while we're on the subject... do you happen to know of the best way to move stuff to the island? And by stuff I mean a bed, several boxes, folding tables and some other odds and ends. Not too much. I'm desperate for some suggestions. You can e-mail me at

I'd so appreciate any help you can give in the way of moving resources. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Great post Steph. Budgeting and living on less can be so much fun. Last year we saved alot of money even during a tough period by just taking 10% out of every penny that came into our home. We did this even with really small checks.It's amazing how you don't miss it when you don't see it, and how quickly it adds up. We also emptied all of our change out of our purses/pockets at the end of every day and put the change in a big bottle.At the end of the year we splurged on a really great dinner with the "spare change"

Anonymous said...

That declaration seems a little severe to me but to each their own. I love saving and budgeting but I also think it needs to be balanced by giving yourself the ability to enjoy your life.

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