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On Being Mindful

Excellent post over on Mark’s Daily Apple today about being present/mindful. I took a mindfulness class in college — a little bit of yoga and discussion on mindfulness techniques — but being mindful takes energy, and it’s a habit I’ve fallen out of lately. Worth some reflection.

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frugality FEELS
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Shopping Smart

“It’s about developing strategies to limit your purchases to things you really like, so that your bank account will be happier, AND you’ll wind up with things you’ll be satisfied with for years to come.”

In a beautiful blend of my favorite things to think about, Apartment Therapy wrote this awesome post about not buying everything so you can enjoy the things you have and buy the things you actually want/need.

Pair with: Becoming Minimalist’s post about the peacefulness and liberation that comes with learning to recognize “enough.”

I’m trying to learn the physicality of “enough”: of being fit enough, eating healthy enough, being thin enough; of lifting enough weights and doing enough cardio. Of getting enough sleep and sun. Of following all the rules “right” enough. But that’s a work in progress.

perfect microwave eggs in two minutes

On Microwaving Eggs

Everyone in my office seems fascinated when I crack some raw eggs into a bowl and whip up some delicious, fluffy professional-looking scrambled eggs in two minutes flat. Hard-boiled (or hard-baked) eggs are a delicious protein-dense snack, but making and then peeling them can be such a pain in the ass, and who has time to make breakfast in the morning?

Breakfast or 4 p.m. treat, microwaved eggs are pretty much perfect either way, and you can add some salt, pepper, cheese …

I almost prefer them to real homemade scrambled eggs, which I somehow manage to bungle every time.

Creighton is now 24, but more importantly …

No New November has come and gone, and here’s what we have to show for it:

  • Bike rack — which we had been meaning to get and planning to drop upwards of $600 on — and other various sporting gear
  • New (cute) clothes from Salvation Army
  • A jacket from Kohl’s on Black Friday, which, while technically a cheating purchase because it was new, was pretty cheap and filled a gaping void in Creighton’s wardrobe
  • More than $3,308 saved
men's Dockers jacket from Kohl's

Creighton’s sexy rule-breaking jacket

From No New November, we learned a couple things: First, that our initial savings goal of $2,500 a month is perhaps unrealistic or more difficult to achieve than we had previously hoped. (Keep in mind that one of us (Emily) actually received an extra paycheck in November.) We also learned the power of buying used and that you can get quality goods that way. And that there’s a lot of shit we just don’t really need. We also learned that we spend a lot on haircuts — something like $70 a month.

Ivy Salon Greenville SC short haircut

… but it’s worth it.

One of the things we’ve noticed is eating Paleo/Primal is a lot cheaper than we anticipated. It also makes grocery trips faster because you just go through the outer loop, hitting up the deli, produce, meat section and dairy. That being said, eating Paleo during the holiday season is challenging, especially when you’re away from home and there are so many delicious things to eat (it’s Thanksgiving), and we really haven’t stuck to that. Even though we lapsed quite a bit over the holidays, we’re getting back in the swing of it. Another challenge of eating Paleo is everything has to be planned in advance or you’ll be running out of the house at 7:47 with nothing but a couple pieces fruits in the morning. Creighton made some avocado ham/turkey roll-ups tonight.

avocado halves

I love the vibrant green of this avocado.

Boar's Head Black Forest ham slices

Black Forest ham slices

ham turkey avocado roll-ups Paleo

A Paleo portable lunch: Ham and turkey avocado roll-ups

What good is Hump Day without any meat?