Monthly Archives: September 2012

Beauty on a Budget: Coconut Hair Mask

I love, love, loooooooooooooove hair masks! I find it wonderful to give myself a couple of hours to just sit around, drink tea, read books&blogs and have a hair mask working its magic on my hair. One of my favourite hair masks consists of nothing but coconut oil. You got it. The stuff you can also cook your food with. Available at most supermarkets and Asian stores. Wonderful stuff!

This is what it’s supposed to look like:

Take one tablespoon and let it melt in your hand. Gently rub it in your hair and comb it through. Let it sit there for at least one hour. Make sure you’re not wearing anything that you wouldn’t want smudged! I suggest wrapping a towel around your shoulders. Wash your hair the way you normally do. And there you go: sleek and smooth hair!

Don’t forget to put a mask on your face 15 minutes before you want to wash the hair mask out of you hair. You might as well pamper your face while you’re at it!

So, by now you guys have discovered that I like to rub food on my face and in my hair. (My husband still thinks that behaviour a bit nutty.) Hey, it works for me…so why shouldn’t it work for you? Plus: it’s cheap as chips!

Love,

Mrs Econowiser

Frugality: Making a Wish List

Since I decided to become EconoWiser a couple of years ago I have shredded off the urge to go shopping. Seriously, I do not go “fun shopping” on Saturdays or evenings. The crowds, the prices, the volatile shopping rush..ugh.

However, I am a sucker for leaflets and other people’s blogs. One time I thought I really needed a certain brand of eyeshadow, because it was “a must-have this season”. (Guess who conjures up these must-haves…right, people who want to make money off you and me!)

Thankfully, I trained myself into postponing this purchase by putting it on a virtual wish list (You could use GoogleDocs or RememberTheMilk). Whenever I stumble across something I would like to have I add it to my virtual wish list instead of buying the item immediately. The advantages are:

  • You don’t spend money on things you didn’t really need anyways
  • You’ll have a nice wish list to send people when they ask you what you’d like to have for your birthday or Christmas, yay!
  • You adopt an EconoWiser-lifestyle so you’ll beat the Mean Marketing Machine, HA!
  • You’ll get rid of certain things on your list when you scan through it once in a while thinking: “Why did I want this item? What was I thinking?” This will empower you even more in living the EconoWiser lifestyle. 

Love,

Mrs Econowiser

Making Money: The Side Business

Today I came home from work and immediately started working on my side business. There were lots of orders. Yes, I sell stuff online. Since I would like to stay anonymous I won’t go into further details than that.

I have been a part-time entrepreneur for over 5 years now. It’s been great fun and I’ve learnt a lot. This side business thing is definitely something I would advise some of you courageous EconoWise-Asses to look into. Why? Well, if you have a great business idea and you invest time in starting things up over the weekends and evenings you might just find yourself in a comfortable situation like mine. The advantages are:

  • Low risk, if you fail you’ll still have your job to support yourself (obviously, you should NOT take ridiculous risks when it comes to your money and your business)
  • New skills, you’ll learn new skills every single day and you’ll be amazed at the things you’re capable of.
  • Extra income, yay!

Really, my husband (he’s my technical guy and help desk) and myself feel as if we have a hobby that yields money instead of costing a whole bunch of it. Where other couples sit in front of the telly every evening, we spend it sitting in front of our computers working on our side business. We’re a grand team! Fun, fun, fun!

A couple of months ago I read a wonderful book about this topic. It’s called ReWork and I will walk you through this book in the upcoming weeks. So stay tuned if you’re interested in setting up a side business.

Love,

Mrs Econo-Entrepreneurial-Wiser

Making Money: I sold my “old” shoes

I promise, the shoe story will end after this post. I mean, I hope to blog interesting stuff for galls as well as guys.

Anyways, the point is that I put all of my “old” shoes (most of them I got second-hand) on the Dutch version of Craigslist and sold them! I fetched €125 euros for my beautiful leather boots. In the meantime I found another pair of second-hand shoes by the same expensive but super comfortable brand (Durea). This time they’re boots and they will arrive via mail tomorrow. In total, I spent less than the €125 euros I was paid for my redundant shoes. Yay!

Would you or do you buy second-hand shoes?

Love,

Mrs Econowise-Ass 😉

Wise Spending: “New” Shoes

With the orthotics arose a new and perhaps very costly problem: I needed new shoes. Seriously! I didn’t want new shoes, I needed them. Why? Simple! These orthopedic supports didn’t fit any of my shoes plus my feet but one pair of boots, one pair of sneakers and my sport shoes (yay!). One needs shoes with removable insoles when adding orthopedic supports into the mix. As I have already given up the high heel thing, I might as well invest my shoes that are super comfortable and timeless.

On to the store I went. I tried several different brands and it turned out that Durea shoes (a Dutch brand specialised in orthopedic shoes) felt like heaven when wearing them. On this quest I found out that this is a high-end brand. The cute little black boots I liked were a whopping €210! There were other shoes from a different brand priced at €119 which I also liked, but they weren’t half as comfortable as the Durea ones. I thanked the saleswoman and left the store without purchasing anything.

I just could not bring myself to spending that much money on one pair of shoes. Later that night I talked to my husband about it. He thought I should have bought the expensive shoes, because of all the pain I recently went through. (Probably because I start to nag when my feet and pelvis ache from wearing uncomfortable shoes 😉 Still, I could not make myself go back to that store and spend that much money on shoes. So I browsed a Dutch version of Craigslist called Marktplaats. And guess what? I bought Durea shoes which were only worn twice for only €30! The lady went through surgery and therefore was unable to wear the shoes any longer.

I am going to train myself to investigate the items I am after first to decide what I really need. And then always, always, always check out second-hand options first.

Do you buy second-hand?

Love, Mrs Econowiser

Sensible Saving: The Orthotics Story

Although I am only 31 years of age, I needed orthotic supports. I had been struggling with pain in my pelvis for almost six months before I found out the real cause of my pain. This picture explains it perfectly:

So I had to go to a podiatrist and get these things measured and made. A rather costly endavour which totaled €199.50. Now I have one pair of these with a leather layer which are nice and comfortable. My insurance company covered everything.

However, I was told that it would be rather handy to have another pair with a rubber layer for exercising purposes. The nice podiatrist told me that insurance companies cover these costs once a year. So if I order this second pair of orthotic supports next year, my insurance company will pay for that second pair. And that is exactly what I am going to do.

Patience saves you a lot of money.

Would you have done the same thing?

Love,

Mrs Econowiser

Addition to yesterday’s post: A Nagging Feeling Of WANTING A Bigger House

Just around the corner another new project will be built and this time those houses will be bigger. Almost twice the size of our house! My immediate reaction was something in the range of “I WANT THAT BIGGER HOUSE!!!”.

All of a sudden I felt disappointed about our beautiful new house. I even dragged my husband to the real estate agent. Hey, I’m human. Turns out those houses would be at our maximum mortgage range.

After a couple of days reality kicked in and my inner Econowiser voice spoke to me repeatedly. What would you need a bigger house for? You don’t even have kids yet, and when you do they’ll love your current house. What happened to your dream of financial freedom and paying off your mortgage as fast as possible? Do you really want to be working long hours each week just because you want to flaunt living in a house that is bigger than a house you need? And spend less time with those kids? Do you really want to risk having financial stress? No, no and NO!

After a about a week I came to my senses again. I had changed my perspective and I was completely at peace with our previous decisions again. I have discovered I am very content with our house and our lives. I am so relieved I shook down the feeling of wanting something that was just a ridiculous idea in the first place. My goal is to exercise this idea and attitude more often.

How Mustachianist is this? What do you think of my story?

Love,

Mrs Econo-sometimes-not-so-Wiser