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Personal Freedom vs Living Costs

We are brought up thinking that money can buy happiness, but freedom of time is what really leads to happiness. Yes, having money can give you the ability to choose how you spend your time, but this has more to do with your cost of living than it has to do with how much you make. If you can reduce your cost of living to the point that you are living substantially within your means, can stay as debt free as possible, can build savings and wealth, and can find ways to earn money that either doesn't require your time (like residual income) or is time you would be spending doing what you love to do anyway, then that will lead to true security, personal freedom, and happiness. Think of it kind of like a business. In business, you want to generate profits and invest those profits to build more profits. Here you want to generate time savings and invest that time to generate even more time savings. To generate that savings, you need to first consume less than you produce, then s
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10 Stomach Towards Floor Yoga/Pilates Exercises

I do these 10 exercises and stretches every Monday and Thursday morning. As with any yoga and pilates position, it is important to learn proper technique and position to avoid injury. Before doing any new exercise routine, consult your physician and a fitness trainer to learn proper technique. Cat/cow pose with scapular stretch Alternating leg and arm lift Plank Thigh stretch from floor Superman/Superwoman stomach exercise Pushups Downward dog to cobra pose Mountain climbers Burpees Child pose stretch with deep breaths

My Simple Exercise Routines

With every New Years comes the desire for most everyone to get more personally fit and healthy. I wanted to share the routines that I've been doing for several years now with great results. In the past, I've struggled with back, knee, and shoulder injuries which gave me the opportunity through physical therapy to learn how to keep these area stretched and strong. For me, these routines have been a part of my secret to staying injury free for a few years now. Even though I was relatively young when my injuries started, I'm actually glad they did. I think it has kept me healthier than I would have otherwise been if I were injury free. I now have friends that are starting to get injuries for the first time and they are now in the process of learning the same things I've had to learn. I hope these routines can help others with ideas on their own journey to better health. Please be sure to ask a medical professional before starting any new exercises and be sure to learn the

New Years Black Eyed Peas and Greens

I recently learned through a NY Times article of an African American family tradition of enjoying black eyed peas and greens on New Years Eve or Day as good luck. The black eyed peas represent health and abundance and the greens represent financial prosperity.  According to the article, the tradition originated when European and West African worlds collided through slavery. Europeans tended to eat greens (kale and cabbage, not collards) for superstitious reasons on New Years whereas West Africans associated black eyed peas with deities. These dishes and rituals came together in America's South and the greens changed to collard greens, which grew well there.  Interesting fact, the first written account of this tradition was for a prayer and celebration of the Emancipation Proclamation on the eve of January 1, 1863 which is the date the proclamation became law. I happen to love both dishes so wanted to share a few recipes I've found. It involves two dishes: (1) a traditional bla

My COVID Protocol

Like millions out there this holiday season, I ended up getting COVID-19. I was vaccinated back in May and was due to get my booster but kept getting scheduling conflicts. So that left me susceptible and sure enough I got it from a friend who didn't no he was exposed yet. My radar was up because he got sick the day after we were together. I monitored myself for any symptoms and on day 4, I started to feel a tickle in my throat but no fever. Out of abundance of caution, I got tested and it came back positive. Thankfully, it was pretty mild for me. The tickle in the throat was gone the next day never turning into an actual sore throat. Then day two brought mild body aches and fever but those went away the next day. Then day 3-7 was cough and sinus symptoms but milder than a cold. I never really lost my energy level and kept my sense of taste and smell. By day 8, I was pretty much symptom free except for a lingering mild cough, but that may also be from the holidays with lots of dairy

Ground Bison Chili Recipe

I recently got a hookup to five pounds of ground bison at a price of $5/lb which is a killer deal. I love bison. On the rare occasion I have meat, I prefer meat that is humanely raised and as clean as possible. Bison checks that box. Since they are undomesticated wild animals, they need to be raised in huge fields with lots of natural grass and vegetation. This makes their meat lean and nutritious, but without sacrificing flavor. For ground bison, my go-to way to cook it is in chili. It's a perfect add-in for my already awesome Vegan Chili . All I do is reduce the amount of beans and tweak the amount of sauces that are added since the bison already provides that meaty umami flavor. If you even have access to ground bison, give this recipe a try. Or substitute for ground beef, ideally grass-fed ground beef. Ingredients 2 tbsp olive oil 1 pound ground bison (or substitute ground beef) 1 large yellow or white onion, diced (about 1.5 cups) 1 red bell pepper, diced (about 1 cup) 1 green

How To Combat Inflation

Inflation is all the talk nowadays. Thanks to the combination of monetary stimulus and fiscal stimulus, our economy is flush with cash. Then you mix in the ongoing COVID pandemic which has hampered the supply of new goods, and you get the perfect recipe of too much demand chasing too little supply. It's Economics 101 as to why we are seeing price increases everywhere. It can definitely be difficult to navigate an inflationary environment. It becomes even more critical to be smart about your spending and money habits. It is exactly in times like these that the Don't Need Much Money lifestyle comes in handy. Here are some tips to help you get through this: Save Save Save - earning money and then saving that money is absolutely the most critical thing to do to navigate an inflationary environment. Really the only thing that can trip you up is if you have more money going out the door than coming in, so avoid this scenario at all costs.  Simplify your lifestyle - by looking caref

Colorado Green Chili

One of my favorite foods in Denver is a Santiago breakfast burrito. Santiago's is a Denver institution. They have several locations across the Front Range, and people line up in the mornings for the their inexpensive yet truly amazing breakfast burritos. What makes them so epic is the green chili they use. It transforms a typical boring egg and potato burrito into something so delectable.  I searched online if someone had cracked the Santiago green chili secret and came across this recipe from Simple Family Recipe . It seems like this could indeed be THE recipe, but I of course found a few things to tweak to my liking. So here is my Colorado Green Chili recipe. Get ready to top this on eggs or smother your own burrito with it. I also provide a way to turn this green chili into a meal by adding white beans and ground turkey to make a White Turkey Chile recipe. Ingredients 1 tbsp olive or coconut oil (coconut oil replicates lard) 1/2 cup chopped onion 1/2 tsp garlic powder 1 tsp must

Turkey Tetrazzini Using Thanksgiving Leftovers

Thanksgiving leftovers are fantastic. Whether you heat yourself up a second Thanksgiving dinner plate the next day or make good old fashion turkey sandwiches, nothing beats it. Well, maybe one thing. My mother-in-law told me about a tradition in their household where my wife's grandmother would use the leftovers in a spaghetti pasta casserole dish called Turkey Tetrazzini. Turns out this recipe is out there and I tried it for the first time and it is awesome! It's like an epic chicken pot pie but with turkey as the base and it surrounded by hearty spaghetti instead of the odd use of pie crust. Be sure to give this a try next time you have a bunch of leftovers. I of course try to make mine as dairy free as possible but there are certain dairy elements that are totally worth. Ingredients 8 ounces dried spaghetti cooked just to al dente 2 tbsp olive oil (or butter) 1/2 cup diced onion 1/3 cup diced celery 3/4 cup matchstick carrots (or fine dice on whole carrots) 8 oz mushrooms sl

Thanksgiving Shopping List

It's now the weekend before Thanksgiving and that means one thing - grocery shopping! I love being the one to cook the main part of the meal and that also means doing the shopping for my dishes. This year, I wanted to create a shopping list to make it even easier from here on out. Feel free to use this list as a starting point for your own perfect Thanksgiving meal.  This makes the following recipes for 4-6 adults. Adjust quantities and dishes as you see fit. Spatchcocked Turkey Sourdough Stuffing Turkey Stock and Gravy Cranberry Horseradish Relish and Cranberry Sauce Spices, Herbs, and Seasonings kosher salt - 2tbsp+1/2tsp+2tsp+pinch+1/4tsp whole peppercorns - 1tsp ground pepper - 1tbsp+1/2tsp+1/4tsp garlic cloves - 4 cloves garlic powder - 1.5tsp+1tsp+2tsp dried thyme - 3tsp+1tsp dried rosemary - 1tsp+1tsp dried sage - 1tsp+1tsp bay leaves - 2 leaves fresh parsley - 2tbsp olive oil - 4tbsp+2tbsp+1tbsp+2tbsp yellow onion - 1 large+1 large red onion - 1/2 cup (about 1/4 large onion

Thanksgiving Green Beans and Quinoa

I've been loving my Everything Bagel Seasoning Blistered Green Beans so much so that I wanted to make it as a side dish for Thanksgiving. I love green beans but am not the biggest fan of the traditional green bean casserole. It's just too mushy and tastes like everything in it came from a can (which it typically does). I wanted to try something that featured fresh green beans but bulked up to serve as a stuffing substitute. Figured pairing this recipe with quinoa would work out well. I traded out the soy sauce for orange juice to better tie in the hint of orange in the cranberry sauce. This was a huge hit! Ingredients 1 pound green beans, trimmed 1 cup quinoa 2 cups vegetable or chicken broth (or water + bouillon) 1/4 cup chopped green onion 1/4 cup everything bagel seasoning 1 tbsp sesame oil 2 tbsp orange juice 1 tbsp rice vinegar 2 tbsp raw or brown sugar 1/4 tsp salt 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

My Tire Buying Secrets

It's that time of year to make sure my car is ready for the winter. Most important on this list is the tires. These are likely the most critical part to safe winter driving, arguably more so than all wheel drive and traction control. Tires are the key to traction since they are the part of the vehicle actually touching the snow and ice.  I have a bit of an unusual process when it comes to tires that I'd like to share. First, I actually use studless winter tires all year long. I find it is a lot easier and more economical to always have winter tires. Sure they only last about 2 years or 24,000 miles but it keeps me from having to store an entire set of seasonal tires and I am always ready for the first freak snowstorm of the season.  Second, I actually like to buy my tires from the same place I get my car worked on. The reason is it is typical for the mechanic or dealership to offer free rotations for the life of the tires if you buy from them. Sure I might save some money by sh

Winter Household Prep Checklist

It's Halloween and that means it's time to check my list of winter household prep items. Every year going into Halloween, I perform some routine stuff to make sure my house is ready for the winter season. Here is my list of things to do: Blow out the sprinklers - I tried doing this myself but realized this should be left to the professionals. You really need a mega powered air compressor. Put covers on all the spigots. Fertilize the lawn one last time using a winterizer mix. Put the garden beds to sleep by pulling and laying down whatever was growing there and putting a layer of leaves on top to protect the soil and allow for some decomposition. Turn on the whole house humidifier. Change the filter on the humidifier. Turn on and test the furnace. Change the filter on the furnace. Turn on a test the fireplace. Check and change the water filter in the fridge. Check my pantry to make sure I have necessary water and bulk ingredients. Check my backup fuel tanks and emergency equipme