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We’re Moving!

Moving

Finally.  We have been in our tiny apartment way too long.  I am excited to tell you that my boyfriend and I just got our lease renewal and we didn’t sign it.  That’s right come October 1st we are moving.  After the market crashed in 2008 we could no longer afford our old apartment and had to vacate ASAP.  We moved to our apartment as a temporarily solution and now six years later we are finally moving out.

Choosing to move was an easy decision, but now comes the hard part.  Now I actually have to move.  We need to start looking for an apartment, shop around for movers and pack up all our stuff.  I am extremely excited to move into a bigger apartment in a better neighbourhood.  But let me tell you…moving is a lot of work.

It’s time consuming.  Searching Craigslist and reading the real estate section of the Saturday newspaper is fun, but it’s time consuming.  I would rather spend my weekends lounging around, working on my tan, reading a good book but I have to find a new apartment.  Then there’s the time it takes to actually go out and look at all the potential new apartments.  Yep, moving takes lots and lots of time.

There is a scene in the Sex and the City movie when Carrie and Big decide to buy a home together and she tells them they are looking at lucky number 34.  I truly hope my boyfriend and I don’t have to look at 34 apartments before we find the right one.

Decisions need to be made.  As a true Libra I have a hard time making a decision.  Sometimes I know what I want and once my mind is made up there is no stopping me because I get fixated on an idea.  However choosing the best apartment and picking one over the other is not a decision that I seem to make very easily.

Thank goodness I can narrow it down to three and I’ll leave it up to my boyfriend to pick the best one.  That’s one of the great things about being in a couple, there is always someone to help you out.

It’s expensive, really expensive.  We haven’t even moved yet and we’ve already started spending money.  The costs of buying the Saturday paper and travelling  around on the weekends to visit apartments is adding onto my weekly expenses.  Since I live on a fixed budget with a small amount allocated to personal expenses it means I have to cut something else out of my weekly expenses.  Right now I am cutting down on my eating out.  I am cooking at home more, which I don’t really like because I’m not super great at it; but I’m doing it in the name of a bigger, better apartment.

Last time we moved (six years ago) it cost us $750 so that’s what I’ve budgeted for our moving expenses this time.  Then we have to factor in the costs of new furniture.  We need a new kitchen table with chairs, a new bed frame and a new sofa (we’ve had ours for almost 10 years).  Thankfully we aren’t moving until the fall which gives us time to save so we can avoid charging any moving expenses onto our credit card.

Have you moved recently? What kind of costs did you incur?

Photo by Flickr

Reach Your Goal Weight This Summer

goal weight

It’s summer time.  That means women all around the world are looking in the mirror and questioning if their body is bikini ready.  With that in mind let me ask you a question…have you reached your goal weight yet?  I am by no means the spitting image of Gisele Bundchen, however I like to try and look good when I walk out the door…especially during these hot summer months. Don’t get me wrong I do have my sweat pant days where I just lounge around my apartment and go to the grocery store in nothing buy my yoga pants.

How are you reaching your goal weight?

I would usually do anything for 15 minutes more sleep, but I like to try and make an effort to stay healthy and keep myself looking nice because it’s good for my self esteem – when you look good you feel good, right?

I have a young sister (by 3 years) who is very active.  Her body with less than 5% fat is motivation enough to get to the gym.  However not everyone likes working out.  Some people even say that reaching your goal weight is more about what you eat than how you move.  I think it’s a combination of both.  Exercising keeps us looking good on the outside and eating healthy keeps us good on the inside.

Tips that have helped me get my body summer ready.

Drink lots of water.  Avoid those sugary drinks.  I am a huge iced tea addict.  I would walk a mile in the rain for a Diet Lemon Snapple, but the truth is iced tea has a lot of sugar in it or at least sugar substitutes.  You know how people tell you eating cake and cupcakes will make you fat well that’s because they are full of sugar.  Swap your sugary drinks like soda, juice and iced tea for water and watch the weight come off.

Buy the size you want to be.  If you need some motivation to reach your goal weight my advice is to go shopping.  This has been a big helper for me this summer.  I know a lot of people say they’ll buy themselves something nice once they reach their goal weight, but I took a more proactive approach.  I bought a pair of jean shorts two sizes too small to get me motivated.

Make sure you get active every day.  I know it’s easier to lay on your couch than exercise but there are 24 hours in every day.  I think we can all find 30 minutes for ourselves.  Try to be active every day even if it’s just for a few minutes.  Some people only like to work out if they have an hour of free time.  This is the wrong way of thinking about exercise.  Workout routines are habit forming so get in the habit of doing it every day.  I recently read in SELF Magazine that Kate Hudson makes time to be active every day even if it’s only for 20 minutes.  That’s the attitude of a healthy happy girl.

How do you keep fit?

Photo from Flickr

 

 

Bring Out the Bubbly: The Different Champagnes and More

champagnePop open a bottle of Champagne and you know it’s a special occasion. The delicious sparkling wine exudes elegance and class. However, as Champagne is a term used for bubbly produced in a certain region of France only, there are actually many more types of sparkling wine from around the world. Let’s take a look at some of the very best:

Champagne

The “Champagne” name is reserved exclusively for sparkling wine produced in the Champagne region of France, an area east of Paris. Champagne is the result of a gentle processing of three different types of grapes, namely Chardonnay — white grapes — and Pinot Nair and Pinot Meunier — dark-skinned grapes.

When you’re travelling through this picturesque region, you’ll pass through the Côte des Blanes, the Aube, Montagne de Reims, Vallée de La Marne and Côte de Sezanne areas. Each of these five regions typically focuses on the production of a certain type of Champagne. Visit several wineries on your trip to get a true taste of the Champagne region — you might even like to indulge in real luxury with a flute of pretty pink champagne!

 

Prosecco

Prosecco, a very dry Italian sparkling wine, is made from Glera, a type of white grape. You’ll find a glass of Prosecco is generally less expensive than Champagne, due to its less involved processing. The Charmat process, invented in Italy, carries out its fermentation process in tanks rather than individual bottles, resulting in an easier, less costly production. You can visit the village of Prosecco, near Trieste in north eastern Italy, to see where the wine originated.

Cava

A tasty Spanish sparkling wine, Cava comes in both white and rosé varieties. It’s mainly produced in the charming region of Penedès in Catalonia, one of the best wine-producing regions in the world. Travel here for a taste of history as well: this area has been producing wine for over one thousand years.

Espumante

Portugal’s version of sparkling wine is Espumante. This type of bubbly is grown throughout the country, so perhaps hiring a car and travelling from winery to winery is the best option (it’s certainly a lot of fun!). The wine region of Murganheira is particularly beautiful — head here and tour their cool, traditional wine cellars. Wine lovers will appreciate the care that is taken with each step of production.

With such a wide variety of delicious sparkling wines produced across the globe, including Germany’s Sekt and Australia’s sparkling Shiraz, you could try and learn about a different one each night. Pour yourself a flute and enjoy!

Image by –Jérôme-, used under Creative Commons license.

Friday Faves: Criticism, Jealousy and Kendrick Lamar

weekend

Happy Friday Loves.  Happy Friday.  Let’s get your weekend started off right with some great personal finance reads from our friends.  Enjoy!

Financially Blonde – My Financial Freedom

The Frugal Farmer – How to Deal With Criticism

VOSA – Jealousy. The Fun You THINK They Had.

Dear Debt – The Myth of Being Caught Up

Lisa vs. The Loans – What Kendrick Lamar Can Teach Us About Money

Budget and the Beach – Ways to Save on Family Trips

Photo from Flickr