What Kim Kardashian Can Teach Us About Contentment

Contentment

I usually “live in a cave” when it comes to current events… but it’s almost been impossible to avoid the fact that Kim Kardashian chose to pose nude for the world recently.

Only God knows her heart. Only God knows why she made this decision.

I’m not here to call her names. She’s been called enough things this week.

I’m not here to talk about how her actions make other women feel. Many other writers have done a great job of that. Nor am I here to open up a discussion on what is and isn’t appropriate to be shared with the public.

But what I think we all can learn from Kim Kardashian is an important lesson on contentment.

Yes, contentment.

You see, so many of us buy into the lie that money and fame will buy happiness. We chase after more. We wish we had a bigger house, a nicer car, a better job, more clothes. We want to be in a place where we can afford to buy higher quality items or have more wiggle room in our budget.

We look at that family at church, or the family in our neighborhood, or that blogger online, or that family member, or that movie celebrity and we envy what they have that we don’t.

We think, “If only we had this…” “If only we had that…” If only we had more money…” “If only we had more in savings…” “If only we had a better job…”

We believe that more will automatically equal greater happiness and fulfillment. We want what the Jones’ have.

But here’s the thing: the Jones’ probably aren’t happy.

As Kim K. has shown us this week, having a net worth of $65 million dollars doesn’t equate happiness. Even though she can pretty much afford to pay for whatever it is on earth that she wants, from my perspective, it appears that she’s still seeking something she doesn’t already have.

Contentment

I think it’s fantastic to get on a written budget. I think it’s often helpful and good to look for ways to increase your income. But, ultimately, know that the best thing you can invest your time and effort into is developing contentment.

If you’re not 100% fulfilled, happy, and embracing right where you are, there’s a good chance you’ll never find fulfillment or joy elsewhere — no matter how much money you make, how many likes your post gets on Facebook, what kind of house you live in, or what kind of promotion you get at work.

Contentment is much more valuable than the greatest net worth on earth.

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Dear mom who is so tired of living on a tight budget…

Dear mom who is so tired of living on a tight budget...

Dear mom who is so tired of living on a tight budget:

I know that you want to give up.

You’re worn down from watching every penny you spend.

You’re exhausted from carefully calculating how you’re going to stretch your grocery dollars to feed all those mouths that seem to never stop eating.

You wish you didn’t have to wait for ever until that item you need goes on sale for the lowest price so you can make it work to purchase it on your beans and rice budget.

You are tired of re-wearing the same thing over and over again. Tired of praying every time you get in the car, hoping it will start. Tired of having to turn down yet another get-together with friends because there’s no way you can afford to pay for dinner out at a restaurant.

You just want to check out of your money-strapped life and go have a latte and a massage. Or maybe money is so tight right now that you would just love to have a few extra dollars to spend on something you want at a garage sale, instead of having to reserve every nickel and dime for only the basic necessities.

Can I encourage you? The difficult choices and hard sacrifices you are making will be worth it… and they could make a major impact on generations to come.

Not too long ago, I was being interviewed by a magazine writer about raising financially responsible kids. I shared with this interviewer some of the things we’ve done with our kids, such as: letting our children handle money from the time they were young, giving our children opportunities to earn money, and encouraging our children to become givers.

As the interviewer continued to ask questions, she became more and more excited about the things I was sharing. At the end of our conversation, she said, “It seems like you’ve done so many things right as parents. Do you ever make mistakes with money or have you failed as parents when it comes to teaching your kids about money?”

I was able to share candidly with her that, yes, we’ve failed in many ways (see yesterday’s post for an example!), but because of our parents’ and grandparents’ examples, we’ve made a lot fewer money mistakes as a couple.

The sacrifices they made to live on a budget and get out of debt paved a trail for us so that it wasn’t as difficult. In addition, their sacrifices inspired and motivated us to want to stand on their shoulders and do even better than they did. We, in turn, hope to inspire our own children and grandchildren to go even farther than we have or will.

In those moments when you want to throw in the towel, when you are discouraged about your budget, when you are tired of all the short-term sacrifices, when you just want to pull out that credit card to buy something you don’t have room in your budget for, remember this: your children are watching. The example you set before them will impact them in powerful ways — either good or bad.

So don’t throw in the towel. Don’t give up on your budget, even though it’s tough.

Your children and grandchildren will thank you one day for your wise money management… and that will make it all worth it.

Don’t quit! The best is yet to come!

Cheering for you,

Crystal

photo credit

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How We Earned 176 Swagbucks Today

How We Earned 176 Swagbucks Today

I’m loving diving deeper into Swagbucks and really learning more about how to maximize it. Keep the great tips coming!

Today, I focused on looking for opportunities to earn on the homepage. I updated my profile, and earned 25 Swagbucks for that, I did some simple surveys, my kids played some games, I earned some Swagbucks for watching videos, earned 50 Swagbucks for following a YouTube channel, and I also won Swagbucks for search.

How We Earned 176 Swagbucks TodayHow We Earned 176 Swagbucks Today

I also decided to try a survey to see what that was like. Well, it was a survey worth 60 Swagbucks and I qualified for it — which I was excited about. But then it ended up taking me more than 30 minutes to complete. And I’m usually a fast survey completer. It went on and on and on and on. I decided it was totally not worth 30 minutes for 60 Swagbucks — especially when I am easily earning 60 Swagbucks in less than 10 minutes by doing various activities on Swagbucks.

So I doubt I’ll be trying to qualify for any more in-depth surveys like that. But I’m glad I tried it so I’d know it was not for me.

All totaled, we earned 176 Swagbucks today — and hit our daily goal, earning us 9 bonus points. Yay! Maybe we’ll hit 200 tomorrow, who knows??

How many Swagbucks did YOU earn today? Have you tried completing the surveys before? Did you think they were worth your time?

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How I Saved Today: Mending My Favorite Green Sweater (and share how you saved today and you could win a stack of books I loved!)

Mending a Sweater

See my green sweater above? I ordered it sweater awhile back — I can’t even remember from where. I think it was from credit I’d earned by sharing a really hot deal to ThredUp?

At any rate, I’ve fallen in love with it. I love the color green, it fits me perfectly, and it’s a great way to add pop to a few of my outfits.

Well, we went on a double date with some new friends of ours here the other night and I wore it with my navy and white polka dot dress. I thought it looked so cute.

Mending My Sweater

Then I got home and discovered that the sweater sleeve had a huge hole in it. And I’d worn it like that the whole night long. Yes, I’m such a fashionista. ;)

Mending My Sweater

Even though I have limited sewing skills, I decided to try to mend it. I didn’t have any green thread, so I just used the grey thread I had on hand.

Mending My Sweater

I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. It only took me about 10 minutes total to fix (and I played Swagbucks videos and earned some Swagbucks while doing so because I’m all about multi-tasking like that!)

Win This Stack of Books

Share How You Saved a Win Some Books!

How did YOU save today? I recently cleaned out my books and came up with a stack of books I have duplicates of or have gotten through PaperBackSwap that I’d like to pass onto a good home.

In this stack of books:

  • The Saturdays
  • Rhinestone Jesus
  • The Mouse and the Motorcycle
  • Mom’s Night Out
  • What’s In the Bible? DVD #12
  • In This House, We Will Giggle — I ordered a copy of this book and then the publisher sent me one, too! I haven’t read this yet, but am looking forward to soon!
  • Say Goodby to Survival Mode — This is an extra copy I had that is a little scuffed up.
  • Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook
  • It Will Be Okay — We love this book!

So, just for fun, one person who leaves a comment sharing how they saved today will win the stack of books shown above. I’ll choose and post a winner tomorrow.

This giveaway is now closed. The winner is Sally {sallycoupons@}

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How We Earned 83 Swagbucks Today (plus some quick tips!)

How We Earned 83 Swagbucks Today

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the Swagbucks tips. Keep them coming! You all are a wealth of secrets and insider tips!

We earned 83 Swagbucks so far today. We’re slowly getting closer and closer to our 100 Swagbucks per day goal! Here’s the breakdown of what we earned:

How We Earned 83 Swagbucks TodayHow We Earned 83 Swagbucks TodayI’ve been paying attention to the quick and easy offers on the homepage, trying to play videos on my phone and computer while I’m working online, always doing the NOSO, Daily Poll, using the Toolbar, and adding in Swagcodes when the toolbar alerts me that they are available.

The kids are so excited that we are getting closer and closer to their first $5 Amazon gift card. :)

Two quick Swagbucks tips:

1) Always check your Swagbucks inbox. I’m noticing that every day, there is usually one offer in there for a quick 2 Swagbucks.

2) Take a few minutes to check out the Book Excerpts. These are located under the Discover tab. There are 6 book excerpts there right now. Click on the book cover, click on Book Excerpt, and you’ll earn 5 Swagbucks per book! That’s an easy 30 Swagbucks! {Thanks to a few readers for tipping me off to this and giving me step-by-step help to figure out how this works! They’ve told me this section usually updates twice a month.}

How many Swagbucks did YOU earn today? What are your favorite ways to earn Swagbucks?

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