Walk, Don’t Run
I decided to keep track of my daily expenses to figure out where all my money was going. After about a week it became obvious that I was blowing a lot of money on eating out and taking cabs or public transportation. This laziness probably also helps explain all the weight I’ve gained over the last five years.
I have since started walking a lot more. The financial benefits are obvious — taxis and the TTC are not free, bit I’m also getting a workout without having to pay for a gym membership. Bit there are other benefits: walking  slows you down and I find myself stopping to literally stop and smell the flowers. I’ve also discovered cool new galleries and grafitti that I wouldn’t have seen from the window of a streetcar.
I’ve now taken to taking walks for walking’s sake. With no definite destination, I’ve enjoyed  running into friends on the street, meeting my neighbours, and having long conversations with my husband on evening ambles.
I feel much more connected with my city.

Walk, Don’t Run

I decided to keep track of my daily expenses to figure out where all my money was going. After about a week it became obvious that I was blowing a lot of money on eating out and taking cabs or public transportation. This laziness probably also helps explain all the weight I’ve gained over the last five years.

I have since started walking a lot more. The financial benefits are obvious — taxis and the TTC are not free, bit I’m also getting a workout without having to pay for a gym membership. Bit there are other benefits: walking  slows you down and I find myself stopping to literally stop and smell the flowers. I’ve also discovered cool new galleries and grafitti that I wouldn’t have seen from the window of a streetcar.

I’ve now taken to taking walks for walking’s sake. With no definite destination, I’ve enjoyed  running into friends on the street, meeting my neighbours, and having long conversations with my husband on evening ambles.

I feel much more connected with my city.

Thrift Walking Poppies Money

Be Realistic
I had my fortune told by Mme Zsa Zsa at the Big on Bloor Festival. I asked three questions: When will I die? Will I always be poor? And will I be remembered.
The responses: I’ll be relatively healthy until I’m in my ’80s when I will die suddenly.”You’re not poor now, Madge”. And, “who cares if you’re remembered? You’ll be dead anyway.”
Now that I know what the future holds in store, I can spend less time anxiously fretting over my levels of fame and fortune. These predictions have brought me a lot of peace. There is comfort in knowing that one will not suffer a long, drawn out demise, a middle-class existence is better than abject poverty and that posterity is maybe not the most important thing in the world.

Be Realistic

I had my fortune told by Mme Zsa Zsa at the Big on Bloor Festival. I asked three questions: When will I die? Will I always be poor? And will I be remembered.

The responses: I’ll be relatively healthy until I’m in my ’80s when I will die suddenly.”You’re not poor now, Madge”. And, “who cares if you’re remembered? You’ll be dead anyway.”

Now that I know what the future holds in store, I can spend less time anxiously fretting over my levels of fame and fortune. These predictions have brought me a lot of peace. There is comfort in knowing that one will not suffer a long, drawn out demise, a middle-class existence is better than abject poverty and that posterity is maybe not the most important thing in the world.

The Future Advice How to be broke

Be Healthy
Your health really is the most important thing in the world. Being physically well is essential when you are hustling to make ends meet. It’s easy to be entrepreneurial when your body can withstand the vigours of 15 hour work days. But when you’re self-employed or if you get paid by the hour, you generally don’t get paid for sick days.
Of course I can’t tell you how to be healthy. I don’t even play a doctor on TV. My only advice is to stay away from the things you know make you sick (in my case, eating too much salty food and drinking too much Diet Coke), and try not to be too sedentary. It goes without saying that you should stay off crack and don’t huff solvents either.
So when you are figuring out your household budget, prioritize things that will keep your body happy — ie., don’t cheap out on food for frugality’s sake. Also weave a workout into your daily schedule. Ride you bike or walk  instead of driving or taking the TTC. Check out inexpensive fitness classes at your local community centre. And carve out some time every day to move around.

Be Healthy

Your health really is the most important thing in the world. Being physically well is essential when you are hustling to make ends meet. It’s easy to be entrepreneurial when your body can withstand the vigours of 15 hour work days. But when you’re self-employed or if you get paid by the hour, you generally don’t get paid for sick days.

Of course I can’t tell you how to be healthy. I don’t even play a doctor on TV. My only advice is to stay away from the things you know make you sick (in my case, eating too much salty food and drinking too much Diet Coke), and try not to be too sedentary. It goes without saying that you should stay off crack and don’t huff solvents either.

So when you are figuring out your household budget, prioritize things that will keep your body happy — ie., don’t cheap out on food for frugality’s sake. Also weave a workout into your daily schedule. Ride you bike or walk  instead of driving or taking the TTC. Check out inexpensive fitness classes at your local community centre. And carve out some time every day to move around.

health How to be broke

The Business of Being Broke
I graduated from university straight into a recession armed only with  degree in fine arts. First of all, I believe that an arts education is great for teaching one learn how to learn and analyze things critically. Secondly, friends with business degrees weren’t faring much better at the time.
One unemployed friend from biz school would get up every morning at 7am, get dressed and prettied up, and then set up shop on her kitchen table sending out resumes, researching want ads, making meetings with friends and joining all kinds of networking associations. So the first best lesson I learned about staying afloat in a crappy economy was to treat being out of work like your full-time job. 
I try to apply the same lessons to working freelance. I try to keep myself on track by not working in my pajamas and by keeping 9 to 5 work hours.

The Business of Being Broke

I graduated from university straight into a recession armed only with  degree in fine arts. First of all, I believe that an arts education is great for teaching one learn how to learn and analyze things critically. Secondly, friends with business degrees weren’t faring much better at the time.

One unemployed friend from biz school would get up every morning at 7am, get dressed and prettied up, and then set up shop on her kitchen table sending out resumes, researching want ads, making meetings with friends and joining all kinds of networking associations. So the first best lesson I learned about staying afloat in a crappy economy was to treat being out of work like your full-time job.

I try to apply the same lessons to working freelance. I try to keep myself on track by not working in my pajamas and by keeping 9 to 5 work hours.

Self Employment Work HowToBeBroke

Fixies: 1950s Jesus Taxco Fern Bypass Ring

Fixies: 1950s Jesus Taxco Fern Bypass Ring

bypass ring 1

I am slowly working through my to-do list of jewellery fixes. I’ve had this 1950s vintage repoussé fern ring for a little over a year. A recap: I bought it at a thrift shop. Like all repoussé pieces, it is hollow. It looked like some one tried to resize it too aggressively and, as a result, it split on the inside. Because it is a beautiful but not particularly valuable piece, I wanted to fix it…

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Bypass ring Dang Jewellery Fern Jesus Mexican Silver Répousse repairs Ring Taxco

A new direction
Being broke doesn’t necessarily make one poor or disadvantaged. This something I’ve been coming to terms with over the last year. I am a freelance writer and frankly it’s a field were the number of magazines and online journals are shrinking (along with their budgets). Plus the cost of everything — food, utilities, etc — has been slowly creeping up.
Basically, like almost everybody else in the world, I’ve had to adjust my thinking about spending, saving and planning living in this slow economy. At the same time, I’ve become interested in all things artisinal, whether it be slow cooking or making things by scratch. And I’ve been thinking about how to apply some of the ideals behind these movements to living  life in general.
If you’re coming here to read about thrifted jewellery and clothing, you should check out my other blog, Gracious Good. There will still be lots of pictures of random thrift finds here, but from here on, this will be the space where I share thoughts on living the high life, low-income style.

A new direction

Being broke doesn’t necessarily make one poor or disadvantaged. This something I’ve been coming to terms with over the last year. I am a freelance writer and frankly it’s a field were the number of magazines and online journals are shrinking (along with their budgets). Plus the cost of everything — food, utilities, etc — has been slowly creeping up.

Basically, like almost everybody else in the world, I’ve had to adjust my thinking about spending, saving and planning living in this slow economy. At the same time, I’ve become interested in all things artisinal, whether it be slow cooking or making things by scratch. And I’ve been thinking about how to apply some of the ideals behind these movements to living  life in general.

If you’re coming here to read about thrifted jewellery and clothing, you should check out my other blog, Gracious Good. There will still be lots of pictures of random thrift finds here, but from here on, this will be the space where I share thoughts on living the high life, low-income style.