31 January 2015

Fun Facts

This post is another post that is really just me talking to myself, trying to convince me to do something. The title may be false representation of what will actually be in the body of this post. Don't say I didn't (say I didn't) warn you.

Sometimes my journey to pay off my student loans gets very boring. Spending money on entertainment is so much more fun than spending it on student loans!!

But it's worth it!

Because I'm a finance nerd, sometimes I run calculations just for the heck of it. Today I calculated that every dollar I save now will be worth about 15 in 40 years. That means that if it is saved in a Roth IRA or a Roth 401(k), based on my income now, saving $1.00 will allow me to retire about 55 minutes earlier than if I hadn't saved that dollar. So, to round it off for simplicity's sake, each dollar saved while I'm 25 will allow me to retire one hour earlier. In other words, if I save $5500 (max contribution to a Roth IRA for one year), I can retire about 15 months sooner than if I spend that money! If that doesn't convince me to save, I don't know what will.

There are a lot of assumptions that go into a calculation like that, and 40 years is a long time in which no one can predict what will happen. But it's cool information nonetheless.

So, when I stay in on a Friday night and play $15 buy-in Poker with the work bros, even if I lose it, i'm still a whole day's worth of work ahead of where I would be if I had gone out to dinner and a movie. Probably better off altogether if I had stayed home to read a book or study for the CFP, but that's neither here nor there.

It's probably pathetic that I would count down to retirement in this way. Especially when I hope that I will become a full time wife and mother in which case I will never retire. But I help my clients with retirement planning; I think it's only natural that I plan my own. And I'm still not sure how to reconcile the two worlds in which I live inside my head. More on that later, I suppose.

St. John Bosco, pray for us!

26 January 2015

I used to be so sure...

I used to be so sure that I was beautiful. Inside and out.

For the past two years I've been surrounded by men who mostly take beauty at face value. No one is concerned with intelligence or ambition or loveliness or anything. It's almost always about what that body or body part can do for me. I work along side men every day who make comments about women as they walk past. They've made comments directly to me about my breasts or my legs or whatever else.

When I was in high school, I wanted that kind of attention. I wanted to be noticed, so I would wear low cut shirts or shorter skirts. (My high school boyfriend also battled a pornography addiction. I thought that if I were pretty enough or went far enough with him he wouldn't need porn.)

Now that the attention is unwanted, I see how damaging it is. The girls who regularly get that attention, even if they ask for it, don't go unharmed. It is a constant reminder that you are the sum of what your body can do. The only value you have is in giving pleasure to someone else.

And none of that is true.

In the past two years I've been told I was beautiful by a man one time. We were at a bar.. he wasn't hitting on me, he had been drinking so he was saying things he wouldn't otherwise say but are generally true. I immediately thought of how inappropriate it was for him to say, but then I realized that it was a genuine compliment, which I am thankful for, regardless of the social lubricant involved.

If these words and little comments can make someone like me, someone who is usually so sure of herself and confident, think twice, think about the harm of pornography.

The bright side is that God is good and I know His plan for my life will be good for me. Lately I've been thinking that His hand in each new creation benefits not only that new life, but also every other life in the whole history of humanity- otherwise He would have put that soul in a different time, a different family, a different body. So His plan for my life is not only the best plan for me, but also the best plan for everyone around me. And for that I am grateful. I cannot wait to see how it unfolds, and for the man who will fall in love with my heart, just for the sake of loving me; not for any benefit that I can provide. That's the kind of love that moves mountains.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, pray for us.

19 January 2015

Dream Day

Today I am continuing my record breaking streak of not studying for the CFP. As of January 1, I gave up Netflix, Hulu+, and Amazon Prime... so you can imagine I've gotten pretty creative with how I spend my time... since approximately 3 hours or less in the last 18 days have gone towards studying.

I just can't get motivated. The material is super boring, and also super dense and I just feel like I'm drowning every time I pick up the book. This all ends tomorrow though, I've made a schedule, broken down the books into bite size chunks, and I'm ready to go.

As for today... today I had a dream day. I thought about all the things I'm going to do after I pass the CFP. I made plans for all the things I wish I could do in the next two months but will have to put off until after this horrid test is a thing of the past. (Please, God, let me pass the first time.)

In addition to the things that I'm doing this year for my 30 Before 30 list, here are a few other things I plan on doing after the CFP is over:

  • finish reading Wuthering Heights
  • clean out my moms garage and the closet in my old bedroom
  • get gazelle-like about paying off student loans/budget more seriously
  • read a business book
  • visit NOLA and Denver and Auburn
  • revamp the wardrobe
  • get a serious prayer schedule and stick to it
The CFP is in two months and 4 days... after that, FREEDOM. 

Patron Saint of Motivation, please please please pray for me. 

01 January 2015

For Days of Long Ago

This is a poem/song that many children in Europe grow up knowing. I suppose it's like a nursery rhyme for them, maybe? I'm not really sure. But it is really beautiful. It is usually sung at the beginning of each New Year and also at funerals and other occasions that mark an end or beginning.

The video is my favorite sung version, it's in Scottish. Below is the poem, translated into English.

Auld Lang Syne
Robert Burns

Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and days of long ago?

        For days of long ago, my dear,
        for days of long ago,
        we'll take a cup of kindness yet,
        for days of long ago.

And surely you'll buy your pint cup!
and surely I'll buy mine!
and we'll take a cup of kindness yet,
for days of long ago.

We two have run about the slopes,
and picked the daisies fine;
But we've wandered many a weary foot,
since days of long ago.

We two have paddled in the stream,
from morning sun till dine;
But seas between us broad have roared
since days of long ago.

And there's a hand my trusty friend!
And give me a hand of thine!
and we'll take a right good-will draught,
for days of long ago.