Monday, November 7, 2011


When I began this blog, my intention was to strengthen women in their familiarity with financial matters. I feel women often overlook their inherent economic power and sell themselves short when it comes to handling and generating money.

I have watched many people come and go through this blog. Some thought they needed to be LDS for this blog to be applicable to them. In effort to reach more women and thus empower more families, I will be moving the money blog to a new location so we can impact more people. Please, follow me there!

I will be mixing new posts with posts I have already covered here; Those of you who have read my blog for the last year will recognize some of the posts I will be re-posting (mainly the frugality posts). I will also be shortening some of the longer posts for easier reading.

I have loved writing about money from an LDS perspective! While I will not be referencing LDS prophets and scriptures as often, I am praying that the work I do will be a gateway for women and families all over the world to draw near unto Jesus Christ.

When our homes are in order, we make room for blessings. When we increase in our blessings, there is more to pass on to our fellow brothers and sisters who are in need. May we continue to grow in wisdom in our stewardship. There is a GREAT work to do and we have our limited mortality in which to do it!

Come hang out with me and subscribe to New Money Mama!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Scripture Sunday - 1 Nephi 1:20

...But behold, I, Nephi, will show unto you
that the tender mercies of the Lord 
are over all those whom he hath chosen, 
because of their faith, 
to make them mighty 
even unto the power of deliverance.

1 Nephi 1:20

Friday, August 12, 2011

Frugal Friday: Logo'ed Pens

I was reminded of this tip because of back-to-school sales. I had gotten wind of a great sale and picked up some 10-packs of pens for an upcoming class. As I was throwing them into my shopping cart, I realized that I had not bought pens in ... 10 years??? Maybe even longer! How could that be?

My husband and I have been given pens at hotels, stores, banks, health and career fairs, seminars, and by sales people. We have received so many free pens we haven't had to purchase any.

If funds are tight, skip the pen sales and ask for a couple pens at banks, from realtors, and at doctors' offices (they get marketing supplies from drug reps). If you do not like the logo, spray paint the pen or wrap it in masking, duct, or floral tape. You can also cover the logos with colorful stickers, which you can also get at doctor's offices or banks!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Leasing a Car

I thought this was an obvious no-no but it has come to my attention that there are still smart people out there who trick themselves into thinking leasing a car is a good idea.

Think about this: Anytime a convenience factor is added in there is a cost associated.

There is the price of buying a car outright.
For people who do not save up the money to buy a car outright, 
there is a fee added (called interest), which makes the total price of the car higher.
For people who cannot afford the payments on a car, 
there was created another product called a lease. 
The fees are even higher and the restrictions stricter.

If leasing is so expensive, why do people still lease cars? The most popular reason is because they erroneously make judgment calls based on the size of the payments instead of on total cost. The payments are indeed small, but the total cost of the car is higher AND one never gets to own the car! If people took the time to do the math, they would never throw thousands of dollars at a car they will never own and thus will never be able to sell or trade in for another vehicle.

Bottom line: If you lease a car for lower payments, it means you cannot afford the car. Leases were created for people who cannot afford to buy.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Buy Low, Think High

Over and over I hear people express to one another "Oh, this economy" while shaking their heads in disapproval. When the stock market plunged this past week, oy, the heads shook some more. What has been your reaction upon hearing the Dow drop?

You know, it seems like everyone wants to get rich, or at the very least, have more money than needs. But few people are willing to follow the advice of those who have blazed their own trails and became rich. The public wants to be wealthy without actually having to do what wealthy people do, or did, to get there. (Having backed out of several experiences that required me to stretch out of my comfort zone, I will throw myself in that group.)

One of Warren Buffet's most popular piece of advice is "Be greedy when others are fearful and fearful when others are greedy." (Buffet uses "greed" as a play on words referring to the timing of when one should invest most and not as actual advice to adopt a negative personality trait.) We've all heard it before: "Buy low, sell high." But for some reason, a large segment of the population forgets this common sense when it comes to actual investing. They freak out and sell when things are priced low. They are relieved when prices go up, and they buy high. Have you seen this before?

Then, there are the people who say they do not have money to invest, but then lament when the stock market goes on sale! When the market plunges, it is is essentially a sale on investments! We seem to become more excited about a sale at Old Navy than a sale on retirement.

Become wise and think independent of the media. Do what financially-blessed people do. Pray and ask for inspiration. Rarely is public opinion in alignment with God's answers. Sometimes, blessings come in bear's clothing.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Mosiah 4:27

And see that all these things are done in wisdom and order;
for it is not requisite 
that a man should run faster than he has strength.
And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, 
that thereby he might win the prize; 
therefore, all things must be done in order.

Mosiah 4:27

Friday, August 5, 2011

Personal Finance Classes Start Soon!

Oh, yes, I am still absolutely here!

Presently, I am doing more one-on-one financial counseling and am preparing to teach a personal finance community class. If you are local and prefer to learn in a classroom setting as opposed to one-on-one mentoring, jump on this! I am capping the size of this class, and there are only 5 seats left!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Save for the Expected Unexpected

When the U.S. economy tanked, a lot of people were left in emergency situations: lay-offs, foreclosures, bankruptcy. Immediately, the finger-pointing began. Blame the administration, blame the lenders, blame "the economy".

Most of the situations I have seen could easily occur during good economic times as well as bad. How so?  Most people do not save for emergencies. They are naive to think that everything not only will turn out OK, but it will always be OK, so they do not set aside money for the times that we have been promised will come.

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin advised:
"Remember the lesson of Joseph of Egypt. During times of prosperity, save up for a day of want.

"Too often, people assume that they probably never will be injured, get sick, lose their jobs, or see their investments evaporate. To make matters worse, often people make purchases today based upon optimistic predictions of what they hope will happen tomorrow.

"The wise understand the importance of saving today for a rainy day tomorrow."
We are guaranteed that there will be rainy days during our mortal existence. Sometimes, we will see the storm clouds coming, and other times, a flood will flash without warning. It is our responsibility to be prepared; let us not blame other factors for keeping us from preparing.

"I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them."
1 Nephi 3:7

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Doctrine & Covenants 58:28

For the power is in them, 
wherein they are agents unto themselves. 
And inasmuch as men do good 
they shall in nowise lose their reward.

Doctrine & Covenants 58:28

Friday, July 22, 2011

Frugal Friday: Request a Sample

Last February, one of the "deal" websites I track posted a letter from a reader who mentioned that when she and her husband ran out of shampoo and conditioner a year earlier, she decided that they would use ONLY samples and freebies until they ran out. What do you know? A year later, they were still going strong!

Now, I know that will not be the case for everyone, but requesting samples from manufacturers is a great way to save a little bit of money! Additional bonuses are:
  • You get to try some products you many never have heard of or would purchase without experiencing first.
  • Samples often come with coupons.
  • These trial products are often the perfect size for carry-on air-travel.
  • Sometimes, the samples companies send out are full-size!

Some of the more recent FULL SIZE "samples" I have received.

The types of samples available for free in this country range everywhere from personal care products to cleaners to diapers to health devices, office supplies, food, software and pretty much everything under the capitalist sun!

Because there are so many samples available, some women fall into the "freebie search" trap. They spend hours looking for free samples and request every sample they come across just because it is free. Only request samples for which you will use and only spend a small amount of time requesting them. Otherwise, you will lose perspective on your money plan, which encompasses so many other facets.

Have you ever requested samples? What have been some of your favorites?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

What Could the People of God Do?

Satan is a tricky fellow. He knows we have a Kingdom to build up in preparation for the return of our Christ, so he distracts us. A shiny thing here, a cool toy there, and he shackles our minds awake at night, worrying about how we will pay for it all!

This is something I know for sure: It is much easier to focus on doing God's work when our financial houses are in order. When we're worrying about how to pay for food to eat or for gasoline to get to work or wondering how we will pay this month's mortgage or rent, our prayers tend to be in supplication instead of in offering ourselves to His service. I see it often, and perhaps you do too, friends or relatives talking about how there isn't enough money for this or that or frantically looking for ways to increase in income. (Hello, I've been there!)

What could God's people do if they were unshackled from debt?

  • They could give more in offerings: temple funds, ward and general mission funds, humanitarian aid, perpetual education fund, etc.
  • They could prepare for missions: for their kids, for their parents, or for themselves.
  • They could spend less time working and spend it in happiness with their own families.
  • They could nurture and heal their marriages.
  • They could further their education.
  • They could serve each other and their communities more, in time and in donations.
  • They could afford special treatments and services for their family members in crisis.
  • They could increase feelings of safety in their children and in their spouse.
  • They could sleep.
  • They could free up mental energies and create more solutions for their homes, their congregations, and their communities.
  • They could regain hope.

God loves freedom and desires it for us. Because of this love for freedom, he sent us his Only Begotten to be sent as a lamb to the slaughterhouse so he could FREE us from death and so he could FREE us from sin, and so he could FREE us from pain. In God-like manner, let us FREE ourselves from debt.

Our duty is to prepare this world for the return of our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. We are called to build the Kingdom of God on earth. What does that mean to you? What is your part of the work?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Too Broke to Budget?

I cannot count how many times I or my husband have heard, "But we don't have any money to budget!" Is that possible? My husband cannot bear the excuse no longer and has begun responding with, "Even MORE reason you need a plan!"

There is a misconception that budgets are only for people who have enough money to meet all their obligations. That simply is not true. Everyone needs a money plan. If one dollar enters a household, there must be a written plan as to what to do with it.

Even a family receiving welfare and unemployment benefits needs to create a written budget for those benefits.
  • How much is going toward mortgage and rent? 
  • How much is going to gasoline? 
  • How much can be sent to the electric company?
  • Of the food stamps, how much will we spend per week? 
  • How much DOES it cost to feed our family?

The most important result of budgeting, even when funds are poverty-low, is that a habit of money accountability begins to be set in place, and that is a habit that sets a person up for success when cash flow increases, even by just a little bit.

There is no valid excuse to avoid counting blessings, no matter how few they appear to be. God enlarges the talent of those whom He can trust with a little.

"And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities."

Friday, July 15, 2011

Frugal Friday: Reuse the Bridesmaid Dress

When my little sister was married nearly 8 years ago, she decided to go with a colorful and casual wedding involving Gerbera daisies and flip-flops. Sounded like a great idea. Then, I found out the bridesmaid dresses were to match the flowers: yellow and orange. I'm sure by now you know that most people look great in yellow and in orange. Hmph.

I was assigned yellow.

Despite what any blissfully naive bride tells you, you will not get to wear your bridesmaid dress again and again. It will go with nothing, if it even "went" in the first place.

While it is rarely a frugal thing to buy the bridesmaid dress, you can soften the blow and create a "bonus" from the purchase:
  • Depending on the style of dress, come October, dress up as a princess or Cruella Deville or a fairy or Jackie O. Bonus: Halloween costume!
  • Cut the top part off. Bam! New skirt! Pair up with kicky boots and a fitted denim top.
  • Cut the bottom part off. Bonus: new top! Wear with jeans and under a blazer or bolero.
  • Donate it to the Princess Project or Donate My Dress . Bonus: Tax write-off!
  • Stretch a large piece of the skirt and paint a masterpiece with fabric paint. Then, frame it. Bonus: one-of-a-kind art!

If you're more inclined, make a table runner, a tablecover for an accent table, a sash, a Christmas tree skirt, a purse, pillow covers, or a little girl's dress.

Or you could go simple, and do what I did:

Bonus: Curtains for the new laundry room!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Proverbs 20:4

The sluggard will not plow 
by reason of the cold;
therefore shall he beg in harvest, 
and have nothing.

Proverbs 20:4

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Putting It Out There

This week, something was bugging my brain. OK, something has been bugging it for a couple months. I probably could have figured it out sooner, but I kept filling my time with things to do instead of being still enough to let thoughts rise to the surface. But this week is when my brain could not hold out anymore.

I was quietly sweeping the kitchen floor, not so much to sweep it but to give my body some thoughtless repetitive motion. While I swept, my brain whirred. It whirred. It whirred. And then it stopped whirring. A lone thought rose.

"I want to pay the house off in 4 years."

"Four years???" I countered. The thought floated up again.

"I want to pay the house off in 4 years."

And it felt completely true. So, there it is. 

My husband and I have been free from debt, excluding the mortgage, for nearly 8 years. It has been WONDERFUL to owe no one. Well, almost no one. This is where the mortgage comes in.

I desire to be COMPLETELY free from bondage. Debt is bondage. Yes, a mortgage has a value attached to it, but it is still debt. I don't like debt. I like being free from contracts.

Eight years ago, my husband and I were under more debt than we thought we could ever get out of. But there came a day when we got so sick of it all that we prayed, and we committed each other, and we sacrificed everything possible to pay that debt off! Cell phone, internet, cars, everything! We thought it would take us 3 years to pay it all off (and that seemed like such a long time then), but we proved our commitment and the Lord accepted our sacrifice, and that debt was gone in 10 months!

I want to pay the house off in 4 years and be completely free from bondage. I do not know how we will do it, but I know it can be done. And I know, with the Lord, we can do it.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Frugal Friday: Set Your Electric Bill to "Equal"

Whew! It's summer, and it's HOT! We're quickly approaching that time of the season when we have been putting off turning on the air conditioner but cannot hold out much longer, even if it means facing that pesky accompanying electric bill.

This a great time of the year to call up your electric or utilities company and have them set your account to "Equal Pay". This is a program in which the company providing your electricity (in some cities, this bill includes water, sewer, and trash fees) looks at your usage for the past year and arrives at an estimate of how much electricity you will be using in the coming year. They then take this estimate and divide it by 12 months to come up with your new "fixed" monthly charge.

The great thing about this is that you will no longer have to guess each month how much to budget for electricity. And the perk of doing this in the summer (or the season in which you use the most electricity) is that you will see your bill go down immediately to a lower amount than you usually pay in a summer without equal payments!

Keep in mind, you will still want to be mindful of your electricity use. If you use more than what the company estimates for you, they will ask you to pay the difference the next time they are scheduled to estimate your use for the following year. On the converse, if you use less than what they estimated you would, they will credit your account accordingly.

The temperature is going to rise but your bill doesn't have to. Sign up for equal payments with your utilities company!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Cash in my Pocket

I love pulling cash out of the bank and putting it in my pocket or purse! I feel so well taken care of and wealthy, for in my purse I have physical proof that, yes, I do have money.

Have you ever said "I don't have any money"? I suggest a woman start by always carrying a dollar bill with her. When tempted to say, "I don't have any money," pull out that dollar from your purse and say, "Oh- Yes I do! I have money!"

I love paying for groceries and haircuts in cash. I don't ever have to wonder if I am going over budget because I can see my budget- right there! Holding my money and watching it being spent in person has given me a bigger education in money than most any book.

It's the beginning of the month, have you filled your cash envelopes for groceries and eating out?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Land of Free

About nine years ago, some of my extended family came to visit from Venezuela, from where I am originally. On one particular night after sight-seeing, we stopped at a Wendy's for a fast dinner. My cousins were eating their meals when the oldest one said something about his fries being cold. I told him to take the fries up to the counter and get a new batch. He gave me a weird look.

"Will they give me new ones?" he asked in Spanish. I explained to him that they would indeed take the cold fries and replace them with a new, hot order even though he had already taken a couple bites. He was skeptical but went to the counter anyway. He came back with a hot order of french fries and a look of amazement.

Later on, a younger cousin finished his soda but said he wanted another. I told him to go up and get a refill. He laughed my "joke" off. I explained to him that refills were free. My family being characterized as jokers, he thought I was pulling a prank on him. I practically had to pull him out of his chair to go get a refill. When he came back with a full cup, his eyes were big as he whispered to his brother in Spanish, "Look!"

His brother replied, "They gave it to you? For free??" This younger cousin commenced to show his full cup off to his parents (my aunt and uncle).

Maybe you are not aware that in other countries, if you get a bad meal and you don't like it, you are out of luck. You get terrible service? Who cares; you're the one inconveniencing the waiter. You want another drink? Pull out your wallet. We take so much for granted here, and we're unaware of just how much we get for free.

On top of freedom to worship the God of our choosing, the freedom to publicly express opinions, and the freedom to venture into our own economic future, we get free stuff!

We Americans have a blessed life indeed.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Frugal Friday: Coupons Fool the Eye

** I am not a Coupon Queen
** I do not know how to get $100 worth of stuff for 15cents.
** I am a woman who happens to use coupons.

There are a lot of things to watch for if you are new to using coupons, one being to not be fooled by the photo on the coupon.

Sometimes, a manufacturer will release a coupon that can be used for any of their brand of products, but they will put a photo of one of their pricier products on the coupon so the consumer gets programmed (fooled) to buy the one in the photo. This happens a lot! Often times, the consumer misses an opportunity for a really great deal or a free product.

Just a small sampling of examples I've noticed in my own shopping:

KY Jelly had a "$3 off" coupon.
Photo on coupon featured a product priced for around $15.
Not pictured was the KY Jelly 2oz size priced at $2.62.
Apply coupon.
Free product (plus 38¢ in cash returned to you, depending on the store).

Reach Floss had a "$1 off" coupon.
Pictured was a toothbrush and a floss, each priced for around $2.
Not pictured was the Reach Floss priced at 97¢.
Apply coupon.
Free product (plus 3cents overage).

Colgate had a couple of coupons for "75¢ off".
Pictured was Colgate Total priced over $3.
Not pictured was the 3.5oz basic Colgate priced at $1.
Apply coupon. Toothpaste for 25¢.

Reynold's had a "$1 off" coupon.
Pictured was their new No-Stick foil. That's what they want me to buy.
Not pictured was the regular Reynold's Foil at $1.52.
Apply coupon. Quality foil for cheaper than you can buy at the dollar store!

Cache Valley put out a coupon for "one free product".
Pictured was almost a dozen of their products.
Not pictured was the 5-lb slab of cheddar I was eyeing for waxing.
Apply coupon. Free $15 cheese! The cashier fought me on this one, but I knew the purchase was allowed and let her call a supervisor over who confirmed what I had stated.

M&Ms put out a coupon "$1off two" Valentine's products.
Pictured were about half a dozen of their holiday offerings.
Not pictured was their holiday treats priced at $1.
Apply coupon. Visiting teaching tokens for 50¢.

These photos sometimes even fool cashiers. I've heard so many times "this is not the product pictured on the coupon." And then I have to point out the text stating "good on any (brand) product".

Remember, READ the coupon, don't let the photo fool you into using the coupon for something more expensive or into not using it at all because you think it's for a product you do not normally use.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

If I Had More Time

The other night, I was feeling in my being if I had more time,
I could get more sleep
and then I could wake up
and exercise
and have more energy.

If I had more time,
I could get the garden in.
I could clear out the garage,
I could clean up the basement.

If I had more time,
I could write on the blog,
I could write my brother,
I could finish reading these books.

As I was feeling this, the thought came to my mind,

"If I had more time, I could be perfect!" 

Well, that stopped me in my tracks. Oh, so that's what this is all about? I chuckled.

Did you know that we have the same amount of time as God? We just measure it differently. We have the same amount of time as a fly. But we value it differently. The fly has but a few days, so it doesn't waste time surfing Facebook before he decides it's time to sleep again or eat again or buzz around again.

How we measure time determines how we will spend our time.
How do you measure yours?

Friday, June 24, 2011

Frugal Friday: Diaper Rewards

Who likes paying for diapers? Maybe an expectant mommy, but the cuteness wears off soon after realizing each one-time use is a dime to more than a quarter down the toilet.

If you're buying Huggies or Pampers brand diapers or wipes, you might as well summit the codes that come in each package and earn codes for free product. I threw away codes with my first baby, and I'm honestly a little sick about it. Check the rewards catalogs every so often to see if there is anything you want or need since the prizes change every so often.

Summit your Pampers codes at

I rarely buy Pampers brand items, but I have a nice little stash of points I have not spent yet.

Summit your Huggies codes at

I use this program most since they tend to include free diapers and wipes in their catalog more often.

Other ways to collect additional codes and rack up points quicker:
~ If your friends aren't using the codes, you can ask them to give you theirs.
~ Google "Pampers codes" or "Huggies codes" every once in a while to find blogs that post limited-time public codes. Make sure to sort your Google-generated list by date ("past two weeks" or "past month", depending on how often you will look for codes).

I have really enjoyed redeeming my Huggies points. I have received several free packs of diapers and wipes and some cool insulated Melissa & Doug lunch bags! If you have to change diapers anyway, why not reward yourself a little for doing so?

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Proverbs 6:6-8

Go to the ant, thou sluggard; 
consider her ways, and be wise:
Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler,
Provideth her meat in the summer,
and gathereth her food in the harvest.

Proverbs 6: 6-8

Friday, June 10, 2011

Frugal Friday: Hire Local

Sometimes, the best deals are right under your nose. Or next door.

When we need services done at home, it is common to look in the phone book or Google online, but depending on what you need done, it may be easier to ask a neighbor. Paying a neighborhood boy to mow lawns is the most common way people do this, but consider other ways you can "buy local".

When I was about 8 months pregnant with my first child, I realized I could no longer comfortably scrub the inside of my bathtubs. I posted on my personal blog asking what housekeepers my friends recommended. To my surprise, my Relief Society president at the time, who also lived just two houses away (still does), saw the post and said she wanted the job. She did it for a lower price than a professional housekeeper charged and she appreciated the extra spending cash!

I've also paid neighbor women to watch my children and paid my sister to make frozen meals for us when I was pregnant with my second child. My husband traded computer services with a neighbor who is a roofer so we could have the shingles on our roof inspected and secured.

What other services can you pay a neighbor to do?

  • Do you need someone to walk the dog?
  • Have you considered paying the neighbor kids in lollipops to pick the dandelions from your yard or weed the garden?
  • Who can diagnose and fix your computer issues? Or design your website?
  • If you work, is there someone you trust to be your daycare provider?
  • Who is a painter or a plumber?
  • Do you have a neighbor who is a lawyer and can help you set up your will?
  • Is there a fantastic seamstress in your neighborhood you could pay to make your daughter's prom dress?

Not all neighbors will be excited to take on more work after getting through a work day, but a lot will be grateful for the extra cash or for the service or product you can give in return. Get to know your neighbors. Save money, and hire local!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Proverbs 22:26

Be not thou one of them that strike hands, 
or of them that are sureties for debts.

Proverbs 22:26

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Co-signing a Loan

Be prepared now because you will most likely face this scenario at least once in your life.

A parent, one of your kids or grandkids, a co-worker, a good friend or ward member will need a car or a house or something else that inspires them to apply for a loan and they will not have enough credit history (or GOOD credit history) to be approved for the loan. This endeared person will come to you and ask if you will co-sign for them on the loan. When they do, you are to scream, yank at your hair, and run as fast as you can past them.
OK, the hair-yanking is optional, but the rest of the instructions still apply.
Never, ever co-sign for anyone. If someone needs a co-signer on a loan, it is because the bank, using its calculations and statisticians, does not believe the primary debt signer is ABLE to pay the loan. In this case, to be "sure" that the bank will get its money back, they ask for a co-signer, or "surety".

Surety is a person who is legally responsible for the debt, default, or delinquency of another. We know it by its modern-day name, a co-signer.

What do the scriptures have to say about surety, or co-signing?
Proverbs 11:15
He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretiship is sure.

Here we learn two things:
1) Co-signing for a stranger will hurt you.
2) Hating debt or refusing to co-sign (or cover someone else's debt) is a smart thing to do.

"Hey, Adhis- but that's talking about strangers. I would never do THAT! I was thinking of my grandson who wants to buy a truck. And my sister who is just starting out and wants to buy a townhome."

Let's keep reading in Proverbs.
Proverbs 17:18
A man void of understanding striketh hands, and becometh surety in the presence of his friend.

Here we learn two more things:
[1]Someone who is ignorant (void of understanding) enters a contract (striketh hands, like shaking on a deal) [2] to become a co-signer for a friend.

In the future, I will talk more about cosigning, but for now, the most important thing to know is:

Do not ever co-sign on a loan!

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Stay-at-Home Queen

Right before I married my husband, I was laid off from the dotcom I had just moved to Salt Lake City for. From that (crushing) point on, my husband and I decided to live on one income. While this was a very difficult transition for me, the journey allowed me to learn that a woman at home also brings economic value.

She plans meals, nurtures good health habits, comparison shops, and maybe coupons to stretch a dollar. She creates a home environment of order, beauty, and a welcoming spirit. She arranges social events for fun and for relaxation. She reads and learns new skills and policies to empower herself and her family. She keeps up on her neighborhood news to help lighten the mental or physical load for another woman. She stimulates her mind with good books and inspiring stories to grow her talents and prepare for her mission outside of home.

There is power and real value in a woman who brings honor to her royal position at home. A dollar behaves as $5. A homemaker becomes an astute business woman. A cottage rises up like a castle.

Friday, May 13, 2011

The Case of the Missing Blog Posts

That's odd. I published two blog posts this week, and they are currently nowhere to be seen.
Anybody see either of them this week before they disappeared?

The curse of Friday the 13th strikes again!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Alma 56:48

And they rehearsed unto me the words of their mothers,
We do not doubt our mothers knew it.

Alma 56:48

(Happy Mothers' Day to all women with mother hearts!)

Friday, May 6, 2011

Frugal Friday: Re-use Gift Wrap

 This tip was submitted by 
rissa roo
"When I receive a gift for Christmas or my birthday I reuse the gift bag that it came in. And I also use the wrapping paper that some stores put in your bag when shopping."

Who among us doesn't have a bazillion gift bags? After two baby girls, my family is not surprised when even Christmas gifts from me come in pink bags!

Like rissa roo, I also re-use tissue paper. I just crumple the sheets up and shove them in the gift bag. If the thought of wrinkled paper makes you swoon, try this tip.

Set your iron on the lowest setting (silk setting on my iron) and iron the tissue paper.

Just a couple swipes makes the paper look at lot nicer.

You can spend as little or as much time ironing paper as you'd like. But as for me and my house, we will serve with wrinkles.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Love of Money

It never ceases to amaze me whenever I run across the tightly-held sentiment that money is evil. The speaker of the thought typically shuns money like mere possession of it will thrust them directly to Outer Darkness. Do not pass go, and for sure do not collect $200, you scrooge! I've even heard it said that a good person becomes evil when he comes upon a lot of money. (What is "a lot"? Is there a magic number?)

Why is there this perception? Let's go to the origin of the phrase.

1 Timothy 6:10 states,
For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

Some people read that scripture and immediately pair the word "money" with the word "evil" when they should actually be pairing "Love of" with "evil." And they seem to completely ignore "coveted after". Love of money is the root of all evil.

Why is the love of money evil? Not just evil, but the root of evil? It conflicts directly with two of the 10  commandments:
1. Thou shalt have no other gods before me (Exodus 20:3).
2. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image (Exodus 20:4).

When I think of the love of money, I picture someone who modifies their schedule, activities, thoughts, and conversation to align with the acquisition of money for the purpose of magnifying their own desires. This person would not have to be wealthy; someone who is middle class or poor can become obsessed with the acquisition of money and covet that which others have.

When our minds are constantly on money, where we'll get it, where we'll spend it, how we'll wear it or drive it, we are too occupied to think of God, how we'll serve him or praise him. We have some other god in the throne of our mind. The preoccupation with, the love of, the obsession with, the coveting of money is a root to evil because, if not uprooted, the distraction from God can sprout into a plant that begets other evil fruit, some of which are mentioned in others of the Ten Commandments.

In actuality, we can replace the word "money" in 1 Timothy 6:10 with nearly any object. The love of gadgets is the root of all evil. The obsession with physical fitness is the root of all evil. Anything that we love more or devote more time to than serving God can be rooted in evil, not because the object (or person) is evil, but because obsessively directing our thoughts toward anything that is not God himself creates a new god that can distract us off the path. (Satan is tricky, too, in that he can distract us with multiple things instead of one sole obsession to make us too busy to worship God. That's a different topic.)

After several financial setbacks, President Heber J. Grant later prospered and used his wealth to help individuals, families, the Church, and the community. He said:
“While I have worked hard for Cash, you know, as do all my friends that have a full knowledge of the innermost sentiments of my heart, that Cash has not been my god and that my heart has never been set on it, only to do good with what might come into my possession. I most earnestly desire that I may always feel this way.”

If you're working on your stewardship in financial matters, you've got the green light to become educated in money. Learn how God wants you to use money in your life and in the lives of those entrusted in your circle of influence. Learn how to keep money in harmony with God. And for that matter, keep anything else that temps you to spend more time with it than is healthy in its proper ranking on the priority list.

Go on and prosper in the land and give all glory to God.

And inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments, ye shall prosper, and shall be led to a land of promise; yea, even a land which I have prepared for you; yea, a land which is choice above all other lands. (1 Nephi 2:20)

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Job 11:18

And thou shalt be secure, because there is hope;
yea, thou shalt dig about thee,
and thou shalt take thy rest in safety.

Job 11:18

Friday, April 29, 2011

Frugal Friday: Check Hotel Amenities

I'm still out of town, so I will make this quick.

When choosing a hotel for an out-of-town trip, don't choose a hotel based simply on which has the cheapest rate per night. Sometimes, a hotel that costs a little more to stay in can save you a lot more money if it has the right amenities.

Breakfast offered. If I don't have to worry about one meal in the day, I save money and also save time on finding a place to eat. Occasionally, I am lucky enough to stay at a hotel that also offers evening snacks.

Refrigerator / Microwave. By using the fridge to keep some snacks in my room or items for light meals, I avoid paying $2 for a candy bar or from over-ordering at dinner.

Shuttle. I'm not just talking about a hotel that will shuttle you to and from the airport. Some hotels offer complimentary shuttle service to any place within a 5-mile radius from the hotel. The hotel I am staying in this week offers this service. When I first arrived here, I simply asked the shuttle to take me to the grocery store, so I could stock my room fridge. When I was nearly finished shopping, I called the hotel to pick me up.

With the above amenities, I saved money on 5 meals (each breakfast I was here), saved money on lunches and dinners by keeping filling snacks in the room fridge which helped me order smaller meals when eating out, and saved money by not having to hire a taxi or rent a car to get to nearby locations.

When considering a hotel stay, remember to check the hotel website or call customer service to see if the amenities in a pricier hotel will save you money in the long run.

Monday, April 25, 2011


How do you put off buying something you really want but is not a need?

I've been having a really lively game of fighting temptations to paint rooms, buy bedroom furniture, and add home decor accessories. I also want an army of hostas for the north side of the house and new shrubs for the flower bed in the front yard. The backyard keeps whispering to me to put in some flagstone and moss.

I want it! I want it I want it! 

Children do what feels good. Adults devise a plan and stick to it. But I still want it. What do you do to put off impulses?

The other night, I approached my husband for a self-imposed intervention. I say "self-imposed" because my husband is one of those loving husbands who wants to give me the world. He will say "yes" even when he really should say "no." Oh, once in while he puts out a brave "no," but it is no match for my "pleeease... I really want one," and he caves. When our daughters figure this out, we're screwed.

But the other night, I really needed him to say "no" because even though I am generally a fiscally-responsible person, I had a bad itch to be a kid on a toy spree. However, knowing I was still married to a doting husband, I presented a cautious plea:

"Honey, there are some things I really want. In fact, I want a bunch of things right now, and I am having trouble not wanting to buy them right off. I will tell you what they are, but I am not telling you that is what I will do or that you must agree to them; I am just sharing. If you think it's not a good idea. Go ahead and say so."

See how much I'm trying to help him say "no"? I rattle my list of desires to him.

He doesn't say "no," but, in an attempt on his part, he does smile and say, "We'll see in time." I walk away before I give in to pleading.  He's not ready to rebuff my begging. Man, oh man, it's hard sometimes to not be part of the world. Or at least buy a part of it.

We have the money to buy these things, but that doesn't necessarily translate into meaning it is the right thing to do or the right time to do it. How do you strike a balance between having fun and living on a wise plan?

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Scripture Sunday - John 3:16

For God so loved the world, 
that he gave
his only begotten Son, 
that whosoever believeth in him 
should not perish,
but have everlasting life.

John 3:16

Friday, April 22, 2011

Frugal Friday: Free Songs and Albums

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

How Will You Use Your Refund?

He's no accountant; he's a magical woodland leprechaun with a pot of gold! I have no idea how Joe the Accountant comes through every year and finds money to be returned to us. We have increased our exemptions the last three years in attempt to reduce our refund, but we keep getting a big tax refund.

Now, it's on to the business of figuring out what to do with this money.

There are personal funds:
  • kids' college funds
  • our retirement funds 
  • home repair fund

There are things I want:
  • landscaping
  • painting
  • basement finishing
  • home decorating

We could do some fun things:
  • family vacation
  • charitable donation 

And things we foresee needing in the future:
  • toddler's preschool
  • replacement car fund

Did you get a refund this year, too? What are your plans for that money?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

What would you ask a finance counselor?

Oh boy!
I am getting ready for a financial counselor training next week, and I am excited!
And nervous.
And excited!

I have been jotting down questions to ask some of the master coaches. What kind of questions would you ask a finance coach? Would it be about setting up a budget? debt elimination? savings? insurance? managing bill collectors? retirement?

What is your most pressing question?
Let me know at adhisblog @ gmail . com

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Scripture Sunday - 1 Samuel 16:7

But the Lord said unto Samuel, 
Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature;
because I have refused him:
 for the Lord seeth not as man seeth;
for man looketh on the outward appearance,
but the Lord looketh on the heart.

1 Samuel 16:7

Friday, April 15, 2011

Frugal Friday: Free Email

My husband and I were driving to an appointment when I mentioned one of our sisters-in-law still has an America Online email account. He said his buddy at work (it seems appropriate to point out he's in the Information Technology field) inexplicably still pays for a email account.

Why are people still paying for email addresses like it's 1995? If you are paying even 50¢ for email, know that you can now have free, reliable email. A few of the more popular and easier-to-use dinosaurs are:

These are all web-based email, which means you can access them from anywhere in the world as long as you have internet access.

When I asked my sister-in-law about her AOL account, she said she kept it because it's the one she has always had and "everyone" writes her there. I had to chuckle. I lived in Florida for 13 years, but I eventually told my friends my new address in Utah. This brings me to another practice I occasionally see.

Sometimes, I find someone has an email account set up with their phone or internet service provider (ISP), for example or Never do that. When you move out of their service area, you will lose any emails you had saved and will have to set up a whole new email account. Or worse, when a phone company or ISP raises their rates, some people resist moving to a better deal because they don't want to lose the email account attached with the company they are leaving. Why do you think those companies so graciously offer to help new customers set up their email accounts with them?

To change to a free and portable email address, choose one of the free web-based email services listed above, set up a new email address, and then email your friends from the new account to let them know to update their address books. It really is that simple.

There are a lot of things in life we must pay for. Don't let free email be one of them.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Proud Mama

Can I just report on how proud I am of my class?

I am so proud of the people who participated in the winter session of my personal finance class!

Twelve families enrolled and in the end, they collectively paid off over $108,000 in debt in 3 months! None of them made huge incomes, they only made big commitments. Good things come to those who commit, focus, and start walking toward a great goal.

♦ Two families sold a family car. At least one other put theirs up for sale.
♦ One person decided to go back to school as an adult.
♦ Five decided to take a personality or careers test to become more acquainted with their strengths and passions.
♦ One person got a job offer promising almost double their current income, working much nearer to home, and juggling less responsibilities. 
♦ Several commented that their marriages felt stronger due to getting on the same page.
♦ Three cut up a credit card in class.
♦ One found she would be out of debt sooner than she had planned.
♦ Several got their $1,000 Safety Net in place.
♦ Of those, some had an emergency happen soon after to necessitate using it and avoided using credit cards to save them!
♦ Of those, most were able to finish rebuilding their Safety Net before class ended.
♦ Ten set up auto-deposits to keep their Safety Net in place.
♦ So many sold belongings, worked extra, and cut down costs to keep moving toward their goals.
♦ We were all challenged in at least one belief we held about ourselves or our relationships or our stuff or our money.
♦ One grew in confidence by bargaining on a large family purchase on her own.
♦ A lot saved BIG money in day-to-day expenses or in needed repairs and purchases (including me!) by practicing bargaining and by sharing deals with each other.

Was this easy? NO! It sounds easy to the onlooker who sees only the end results; there was a lot of work, sacrifice, and commitment involved from these families to get from Point A to Point B. On, they will travel to Point C with perhaps few noticing the sweat they will break on their long journey before the finish line.

I again learned much about myself and about human behavior from some very interesting personalities! I thoroughly enjoyed the company of wise people.

I am very proud of these students and wish them continued learning and success!

Monday, April 11, 2011

How Committed Are You?

If you are new to the blog, you may not know that I teach a personal finance course in the community. I'm a tough teacher. When someone is plopping down $100 or more and three months of their life for a course, I want them to get their money's and time's worth, and to me, that means, they are getting results.

I am probably too tough for some personalities. On a few occasions, I have seen the countenance of a student change to reflect a burning anger towards me or to a stonewalled face so as to disguise their desire to deck me. That's a good sign, for either they will allow their emotion to help them become aware an old idea is fighting for survival or they will again embrace denial. Either way, a decision will have been made and committed to.

I sometimes ask personal questions that are seemingly unrelated to money. I ask questions that people do not think are my business. I do not ask for curiosity but to gauge one's commitment, to assess the true situation, and to uncover possible solutions. Not everyone wants a solution.

In a dream, the prophet Lehi came upon a tree with a white fruit that was more delicious than anything else he had ever tasted. Naturally, he desired for his family to partake of this new-found joy. He beckoned them: his wife came, some of his children came. Despite his selfless desire to help others better their lives, he could not convince everyone to come to the tree. He had no ulterior motive, though one was suspected. He had experienced a most wonderful thing and he wanted only for others to be as free and as happy as he felt.

What I have found (and find still) is that most people want things to change for the better... without having to change themselves. Quite regularly, I hear or read people say they want to be out of debt, but they set up a limits as to how much they are willing to do toward that end. They want the delicious fruit to come to them, instead of going to the tree themselves to pluck it.

An associate of mine on Facebook recently posted,

"Being interested in change means you will do what is convenient.
"Being committed to change means you will do whatever is necessary."

Are you interested, or are you committed?

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Deuteronomy 8:18

But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: 
for it is he 
that giveth thee power to get wealth,
that he may establish his covenant 
which he sware unto thy fathers, 
as it is this day.

Deuteronomy 8:18

Friday, April 8, 2011

Frugal Friday: eFile your taxes for free!

I can't be the only one who procrastinated on filing her taxes. Am I? Anyone else?


(crickets chirping)

This week's Frugal Friday post is for those quiet ones who are too shy to admit it. Fortunately for you guys, Tax Day falls on April 18th this year!

If you have simple taxes and do not need (or want) an accountant, you can figure out, print, and e-file your taxes for FREE on:


Good luck!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Taxing 3

Crunch time! Tomorrow is our appointment with the accountant and I have a lot of work left to do!

I have all my papers. They are in categories and they are in chronological order. I have printed out or looked online for the missing statements.

Step 6:
It's time to pull out the calculator!
Start with one category and total up expenses from each sub-category. (for example, "Business" category: utilities, supplies, trainings, meals, etc.; for "Medical": prescriptions, copays, doctors/hospitals, etc.) Repeat ad nauseum in all categories.

When I total everything, I write the totals on a sheet of paper like this:
_____ miles
_____ goods donations
_____ cash donations

_____ office sq ft
_____ miles
_____ utilities
_____ internet
_____ advertising
_____ supplies

_____ miles
_____ co-pays
_____ Rx

Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

Step 7:
I realize I do not have some of my mileage recorded. I go down my list of accounts or places that fall under Medical, Charity, and Business (these are the categories that allow deductions for miles spent). I check the number of trips to the doctor, or a donation drop-off, or a business event and then google online driving direction sites (like Mapquest or Google Maps) and find the distance from my home to these various locations and write them down. In addition, I write down the number of miles I put on my car in the last year. This will help determine what percentage of my travel was devoted to business.

Step 8:
Almost finished!!
Put the sheet above in a folder with the rest of my documents: property tax info, 1099's, W-2s, mortgage interest statements, college fund contributions, my girls' social security numbers, and so forth.  

Completed! And my husband says he will reward my efforts with some Ben & Jerry's! I love ice cream, but I will definitely keep better records this year, so I don't dread and procrastinate this step again next year.

Tomorrow morning, I will hand over the contents of my folder to Joe the Accountant and let him figure out the best way to arrange everything to generate our lowest tax liability. Man, it's late-hour times like these that I am even more grateful I have an accountant!

Aren't you happy you filed your taxes already?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Taxing 2

Tonight is the last night for the winter session of my personal finance class, so I only have an hour or so today to work on tax documentation.

Step four:
Once all papers have been placed in categories, place them in chronological order (January, February, March...). This helps me see what documents are missing.

Step five:
Log online to find missing statements, if any. Also, to check records from online-only accounts (FLEX, bank accounts, etc.) This step takes the longest for me.

Oh, boy. The medical category is taking the longest...

For behold, we are in bondage ... 
and are taxed with a tax which is grievous to be borne.
Mosiah 7:15

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


I have not filed my taxes. Yes, it's true. The Mormon money lady has procrastinated one of the things that one cannot (should not) avoid in this life.

How about you? Have you been good girls and boys in getting your taxes filed this year? The IRS is making their list and checking it twice. They're gonna find out who has been naughty or nice.

Is Tax Day really less than 2 weeks away already?? I usually get my tax info submitted to my accountant by February, but this year, oh, this year, I just haven't gotten around to WANTING to collect and categorize that information.

After having the baby last year, I completely lost all sense of organization and forgot to record anything, which leaves 8 months unaccounted for. In addition, the labor and delivery did not go according to Plan A (or Plan B) (and Plan C was really expensive) leaving us with more accounts to keep track of. And on top of that, some of the medical bills arrived at our house many months after service was rendered, throwing us off and leaving us scrambling and pulling money from various savings accounts to pay them. We ended up paying a lot of medical bills which I now need to locate and sort into what got paid with FLEX (pre-tax money) and what got paid with savings (post-tax money). That sounds really fun, huh?

(What's with the super-late billing anyway?? If you are a medical professional who charges patients late fees for paying months late, I say if you send your first statement months late after service, patients should get a "late credit" applied to their bill. Just sayin'.) 

So, how do I tidy up the disarray now?

Step one:
Clear off workspace in the office. Empty out the trash can for for document shredding.

Step two:
Get all paperwork out. Receipts, invoices, statements, agreements, etc.

Step three:
Sort into categories: Medical, Business, Utilities, Pay Stubs, Internet/Communications, Charity, etc.

Step fou-
Naah... That's it for today. My tolerance for this work is full. Next step, tomorrow!

Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.
Thomas Jefferson

Sorry, Tommy.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Scripture Sunday - Proverbs 19:20

Hear counsel, and receive instruction, 
that thou mayest be wise
in thy latter end.

Proverbs 19:20

Friday, April 1, 2011

Frugal Friday: Selective Organic

When some people hear "organic", they think "expensive". Truth be told, it IS expensive to do organic if you buy EVERYTHING organic: organic apples, organic cookies, organic clothing.

Well, don't do EVERYTHING organic. I, personally, find it ridiculous to buy organic cookies. If you're going organic for health reasons, you may want to reconsider your snacking. I heard food journalist and author of Food Matters Mark Bittman discuss in an interview that the most common choice Americans are faced with is not between organic broccoli and standard broccoli; it's between broccoli and a burger. The organic cookies don't mean much if you are choosing cookies more than you choose an orange.

If you want to lean more towards organic food or if you have been struggling with your grocery budget since you converted to organic food, consider the following. When the grocery budget is modest, but your healthy intentions are big, focus your purchasing on a few items that make the most impact.

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) analyzed conventionally-grown (non-organic) produce to measure pesticide residue levels. After nearly 96,000 tests, they determined that consumers could reduce their exposure to pesticides by nearly 90% if they avoided the most contaminated foods or replaced them with their organic counterparts.

The 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables are:
  1. Celery
  2. Peaches
  3. Strawberries
  4. Apples
  5. Blueberries (domestic)
  6. Nectarines
  7. Sweet bell peppers
  8. Spinach
  9. Kale / Collard greens
  10. Cherries
  11. Potatoes
  12. Grapes (imported)
You can get a shopping pocket guide here, but see the full list of tested produce here. The full list seems to be updated more often and you will notice that the "Dirty Dozen" at the bottom of the list varies a little bit. But, hey, it doesn't hurt to know what other fruits or veggies would make the "worst" list if the organization decided to include number 13 and 14, right?

Currently, the only organic my family buys is spinach, carrots, and apples since we tend to juice these, and juicing makes things more readily absorbed by the body. (I didn't think it a good idea to make pesticides easier for my body to absorb!) Interesting enough, my wallet was easily converted to buying the organic carrots when I found that my grocery store prices them cheaper than the standard carrots. That may not be forever, but for as long as that lasts, I'll take it!

Now, you know eating organic doesn't have to break the grocery budget if you know where to focus your efforts and your dollars.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


"Just one more."
"If only I could get just a weensy bit more."
"All I ask is for one more thing."
"Man, I am a little bit short."
"It doesn't look like it's going to be enough."

Sometimes, we say these things in reference to something we have or are making, or our money, or our time, or our bodies, or our "flaws". But when we learn more about where these words come from, we learn something way more personal.

I believe we always show up as who we are. If I am a strict person when I am privately inspecting myself in the mirror, I may have strict expectations when it comes to work. If I'm a forgiving person to myself, I will be a forgiving person to others. If I think there is never enough, then I may hoard when "free" is offered or I may accept none of it and think "it's too good to be true." If I think there is always enough, I will always be looking for a chance to give.

I have tried to modify how I am for different scenarios, but I have only been able to hold up the mask to an extent. There have always been clues that give me away. If I am a private person trying to be open at a function, I inevitably hold back just a little or wrap up conversations a little early or keep the conversations at a superficial depth or hold my hands in a closed or hidden pattern. There are always clues.

You always show up as you. 

What is "you" saying?

I'm a listener and dissector of spoken words; it is one of my husband's pet peeves about me. But it is also one of my strengths! I have found that people unconsciously work "key words" into their everyday language. These key words are the words their minds replay over and over in their minds. Words repeated in the mind become beliefs. Beliefs form attitudes. Attitudes leak out into words. This is where my ears perk up and my eyes start observing. Leaked-out words unconsciously affect what we do or at least how we do it. Invariably, these acts determine the results we get. These results, of course, solidify our beliefs. "See! I told you that always happens to me!"

What does this have to do with money and personal finances?


(fortifying your)

If you have developed certain beliefs about yourself or the world or the Lord, do you think you might spend your money in accordance with that belief? Do you think you might budget amounts for different categories based on that belief? Might it be a problem if your belief clashes with your spouse's belief or your employer's belief?

I'll share with you one of the things I did not realize I believed until (painfully) recently. Maybe you have believed it, too.

"I do not have enough time!" 
"There is not enough to give even a little bit."
"I wish I could do more."

What did I believe?

This surprised me considering my financial situation: debt-free, several months of expenses saved up in the bank, several other savings accounts for different things I am saving toward. I honestly have everything I need. I didn't realize I had been playing "not enough" over and over in my head. I caught myself also saying things like:

"Oh- honey, that's not going to be enough."
"Sweetie, you missed a spot."
"Dear, thanks for cleaning the kitchen, but I noticed you didn't clear off the microwave cart."
"Ugh! I can't believe I forgot that one thing!"

(How often have you said "There isn't enough time in the day!" or "If only I could clone myself!"?)

My attitude about "never enough" was showing up everywhere! Nothing was ever enough. Not what I did. Not what my husband did. Not what anybody did. Not what the weather did. Is it because there was lack? Only in my eyes. But hold on, it gets better...

My words clued in to what I had been feeling, something I think a lot of people feel or have felt at some point.

"I am not enough."


When I FEEL like I am not enough, then that FEELING of "not enough" starts showing up wherever I go. If my body acts out the feeling, it acquires something new. If it will not shop or hoard, then it worries. If worrying is not enough, then it says that the stuff around or the people around are not doing or being enough. Freaky, huh?

While the messages that surface may not always be rainbows and sprinkles, they are always helpful. Women are so often on the go-go-go or distracted by immediate situations, we tend to ignore what is going on in our spirits. These manifestations of internal dialogue are blessings because they say "Hey, you! Wait a minute! Would you pull out this splinter?" 

Mosiah 4: 30 bears a warning to pay attention to the pattern of our internal dialogue:

"But this much I can tell you, that if ye do not watch yourselves, and your thoughts, and your words, and your deeds, and observe the commandments of God, and continue in the faith of what ye have heard concerning the coming of our Lord, even unto the end of your lives, ye must perish. And now, O man, remember, and perish not."

Why do you think the Lord also said "For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he"? (Proverbs 23:7)

Can you see how FEELING like you are not enough can translate into FEELING the income you have or the car you have or the clothes you have or the callings you serve in are not enough? Can you see how that attitude may ooze onto people you love or opportunities that come your way? Can you see how that may affect your spending habits or your ability to save? How can you stop spending when you are subsconsciously trying to patch up your not-enoughness? How can you grow a retirement account if your large savings or food stash still feels like not enough?

I had a revelation this past weekend that came in a picture in my mind, as most of my epiphanies do. I saw God building me, this creature called Adhis. He was putting together my physical traits, uploading my personality, and equipping me with abilities. He then stepped back and said, "This is exactly enough for her experience." If He thinks it is enough, I must be.

God created YOU 
perfectly JUST RIGHT for His design.

When He put you together, He stepped back, checked out His work and said, "YES! That's exactly what I wanted!"

He designed you and He designed me exactly to His specifications. Do you trust His design?

I am exactly enough and so are you.