I only just recently figured out how to save money. It’s super simple, really.

The key to saving money is to have a goal. Goals keep you motivated. They keep you going when the going gets tough.

One of my resolutions this year was to get better at saving money, so I decided I needed to make a small goal in order to make it come true. My goal was to save $300 by March so I could use it to travel more this year. Believe it or not, this was a hard goal for a girl who forgets to transfer just $50 into her savings account each paycheck. But, I’m glad to say that I achieved my goal in February, a full month earlier than I anticipated. 

Here’s how I did it.

First, I recognized that I am generally unreliable when it comes to saving money on my own, so I turned to modern technology for some help. I tried out a couple of different apps to help me keep track of my finances so I could find ways to trim down spending and grow my savings. I tried Mint, I tried You Need A Budget, but I didn’t stick with any of them for more than a few days. And then I stumbled on Digit

Digit is a money saving app that automatically transfers small amounts of money from your bank into a savings account. The automatic withdraw is usually between $5 – $50, depending on your savings goal and how much money you have in the bank at the time. The app is smart, so it never saves more than you can afford. You can also set a limit for it to stop saving money when your account reaches a certain point. I also love how it texts me how much money I have, and how much money I’ve saved, every day. I used to be one of those people who dreaded checking my bank account, but now that I have realistic expectations about spending and savings I get excited to see how much closer I’m getting to my goals. 

I’ve been using Digit for over a year now, and it is my favorite savings app by far. I wouldn’t recommend it if I didn’t love it. The app is FDIC insured so I don’t have to worry about security issues or having my banking information compromised. If you’re interested in trying out Digit, check it out here and let me know what you think!

Happy saving!

Sam

Grand Canyon South Rim photos

A few weekends ago I took a three-day trip to the Grand Canyon. It was without a doubt one of the most jaw-dropping, humbling, awe-inspiring places I’ve visited. I know this may sound cliche, but the Grand Canyon is so unexpectedly…huge! And deep, and old, and forever. I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that something like this exists, so physically close to civilization but so separated from us by years. 

We started out our trip in Phoenix and drove through Sedona and Flagstaff on the way to the Grand Canyon. It was my first time in Arizona, and the long drive was so scenic, calming, and green. Arizona is a beautiful state. And Sedona, with its tall red rocks and tufts of green shrubs, is probably one of my favorite places ever.

A picture speaks a thousand words. Three days wasn’t close to enough time to see the Grand Canyon and take it all in. I look forward to visiting again sometime in the future!

 

Red Rocks SedonaSedona ArizArizona Scenic Drive Mountains ViewGrand Canyon South Rim HikeGrand Canyon Yavapai Village  Grand Canyon Desert View Grand Canyon Colorado River Grand Canyon Mather PointGrand Canyon South Rim Colorado RiverGrand Canyon SunsetGrand Canyon Sunset Hopi Point    

 

Hi friends,

Firstly I’d like to apologize for being MIA these last two weeks. I am falling behind on my two post per week goal, however I have been busy rearranging my time, my mind, and place I call home. Right now I am enjoying sometime in Los Angeles. I can’t wait to move here. I hope you all have the chance to go on vacation and visit your happy places too.

Don’t worry, I have more make-up and beauty posts coming soon!

Love,
Sam

Listening to: Rumer – “Slow”

I felt the burn today, and did much better than I expected!

I thought a three minute jog would kill me. Well, I didn’t die, but my heart was beating out of my chest and my calves felt like they were burning in the seventh circle of the inferno. But it was a good burn, a good, sore, workout burn. Not like accidentally touching a cookie sheet fresh out of the oven, but like a large log smoking out in a campfire.

I did, however, have to take a break because the bottom of my yoga pants were rubbing really uncomfortably on my calves, so I paused for a couple of seconds to roll them up. I get paid in two days, so I think I will take a trip to Target or Old Navy this week and buy some activewear. I’ve been committed to this program thusfar, and I really truly believe that I will be committed for a long, long time. I’m just not sure what to look for when buying activewear: polyester, cotton, leather, wool? I know I don’t like working out in shorts, but I may buy one pair for the day that I do. I really like mid-length yoga pants, so I will buy at least two pairs of that. I could use some new sports bras, too, but I doubt Target or Old Navy have any in my size (first world well-fed issues). I also need more pairs of socks and sneakers. I will wait for maybe another month though to buy a good pair of kicks. I want to do research and I won’t mind spending at least $100 on something that I know I will utilize.

Three weeks in, and I love jogging but I am still not into weightlifting. So I decided to use the gym-traption device that was sitting in the corner and do multiple different exercises on it. It took a second for me to understand what the heck the thing was and to convince myself that it was not out to get me. Lucky for novices like me, there were pictures on the side of the machine and step-by-step instructions. So with 15 lb weights, I did two reps of leg curls, bicep curls, lying leg curls. The lying leg curls were a KILLER, and I was shaking toward the end. The leg curls were not that hard, and the bicep curls were okay. I pushed through it though and finished, albeit a little slowly and shaky! I really like these varied exercises though, and I want to do this now instead of the regular dumbbell curls.

I also completed two reps of 15 captain’s chairs. I can now to 10 consecutively, and I would like to work my way up to 20 one day. Maybe not this week, but soon!

Just when you think working out can’t get any better, it does 🙂

I loved today. This may have been one of my best runs thusfar! Runner’s itch = non existant! I did have to downgrade to the 5 lb dumbbells because I just could not for the life of me curl with the 10 lb ones. My arms are so weak. BUT I can do 10 consistent captain’s chairs now without taking a break! So I know I am getting somewhere with my soft core. Not to mention, I look forward to jogging and have been doing a great job keeping my posture straight and legs long.

I can’t say I’m too thrilled about next week’s schedule, though. I am not sure if I can jog for three straight minutes! Two minutes, maybe, but three?! Yikes. Still, I am going to keep pushing and work through it all. The workouts just keep getting better, so I know even if I am miserable on day one I will adapt and do better than I ever expected.

Next time I will: Push harder, faster, and farther than ever before.