Deck Upgrade + Favorite Finds

As many of you know, my husband and I purchased a home about a year and a half ago. Slowly we’ve been upgrading, remodeling, and decorating.

Although kids are going back to school, we still have about a month and a half of the real summer season left. I figured there was no better time than now to get some furniture for our back deck.

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Our deck is actually pretty big, and purchasing fancy deck furniture such as sofas, side tables, and picnic tables isn’t a priority right now. I did however want to add a little something to our huge deck.

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START TODAY! A weekly plan to save $500 by Black Friday!

20171209_103047-01.jpegYou’re probably thinking to yourself “The Holiday season just ended. Why is this crazy girl already posting about Black Friday?”

I’m already posting about Black Friday because I LOVE the holiday season. I enjoy so many aspects about the holiday season: The friends, family, travel, tradition, and of course, gift giving…

The challenge that I faced in the past was financial planning for the holiday season. For so long, I would get to the end of November and early December and wouldn’t have anything specific set aside for holiday travel or christmas gifts. This led to me taking out of savings to pay for Christmas gift or even worse, not saving anything and putting an entire paycheck towards gifts.

When I got married I realized this had to stop. We started doing a lot more holiday travel and increased gift giving. This meant spending a lot more money and it made sense to go into the holidays prepared.

I tried a few different things in the last few years, but this year we tried a method that worked wonderfully! Basically, we set up a line item in our budget or “bill” to ourselves for Christmas. I want to help you be prepared for this time next year and I’ve got an easy way for you to save $500 by next Black Friday! If you need to save $1,000, just double the plan.

Today is January 1st. Black Friday is on November 23. That means you have 326 days to save $500 (did I do my math right for the days?). That’s incredibly realistic. That means you need to save roughly $1.54 a day.

That’s right $1.54 a day. That’s less than your coffee habit… that’s less than you amazon habit… that’s less than your eating our habit… $1.54 a day is easy.

I’ll make this plan for 46 weeks. I’ll start off slow and ease you in!

Weeks 1 and 2: $5 a week

Weeks 3 through 37: $10 a week

Weeks 38 through 45: $15 a week

Week 46: $20

In 46 weeks you’ll have saved $500 and you’ll have 4 days to spare before Black Friday!

The hardest part is not touching that money before Black Friday. Some easy suggestions for setting the money aside:

  1. Open an online checking or savings account not connected to your main checking account. Some banks will even give you free money for opening up an account.
  2. Get cash every week. Go to the bank (or get cash back while you’re grocery shopping) and put the allocated amount in an envelope. Add cash to the envelope every week and you’ll have $500 in cold hard cash set aside for holiday shopping.
  3. If you’re like me and have a paypal account that you don’t use: put the money in a paypal account every week and transfer it back come holiday season.

 

NYE — A little re-branding

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I can’t believe 2017 is coming to a close. It’s been such an amazing year. Although you wouldn’t know this from reading my blog (because I think I’ve only posted once or twice this year), there have been so many great changes that took place this year.

My husband and I purchased our first home, adopted a dog, and had an all around great last 365 days.

I’ve had so many observations over the last year that has led me to wanting to make some changes when it comes to my blog. Pinch Plate Party was originally supposed to be a food, entertaining, and lifestyle blog. At the end of the day. It hasn’t really been much of anything.

I want to do better. And I know I say that every year. But I do. This isn’t really a resolution — I just want to blog about my everyday life. This could turn out to be a failure, but, my blog is already a bust so why no try something new.

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls

Get ready to see a lot more content… and a lot more random content about my everyday life.

Most likely my content will focus on life, thoughts, finances, food, DIY, and some travel. Really just a compilation of who I am. If you know me personally, you know I’m always moving a mile a minute and constantly have SO MUCH going on in my head.

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls

Over the last year I’ve made observations about my own finances, my friends finances, and just general observations around millennial finances. I want to create some conversations around that.

Since buying our home I’ve done some small remodeling projects around the house. I’d love to share my successes and failures around that as well.

I still cook a lot, but I’ll be honest, I’ve subscribed to a food box because as life gets more hectic, I don’t always have time to grocery shop and create recipes from scratch. So there will be some variety around the food aspects as well. And don’t worry… We still eat out too.

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And travel… AHH. I love to travel. I already have two trips planned for 2018 and I can’t wait to share those travels and many more with you as well.

Milan, Italy

Milan, Italy

So as I said. Just get ready. This could be a hot mess. But my attempt to stay “on-brand” has just kept me from being creative. I love writing and I love creating and I love sharing a little bit of me with you.

I hope you enjoy what is to come.

Cheers to a new year!