Author Topic: What's up with the Frugalwoods?  (Read 97477 times)

Captain Cactus

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What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« on: March 05, 2018, 11:37:17 AM »
Anybody notice that the Frugalwoods popped up as the guest this week on various personal finance podcasts?

I haven't listened yet.  Did they publish a book or something?  Just thought it was unusual, even Mad Fientist has her on there, and he hardly ever posts podcasts.

Cranky

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2018, 11:38:35 AM »
Yes, there's a book coming out!

terran

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2018, 11:39:39 AM »
Her book came out, so this is a big PR push. Smart, but it does lead to some repetition for those of us who follow multiple FIRE bloggers/podcasters.

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2018, 12:02:45 PM »
I don't think I'll ever not find the ecosystem of celebrity PF bloggers amusing.

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2018, 12:03:16 PM »
Book and a baby :)

Captain Cactus

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2018, 12:07:35 PM »
Ah ha, I suppose I would know that if I listened to the podcast!  Makes sense, thanks!




Captain Cactus

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2018, 12:11:14 PM »
I don't think I'll ever not find the ecosystem of celebrity PF bloggers amusing.

Yes, I agree. They've got themselves a nice little business going.  Some are better than others.  Some seem to be riding on the coat tails of others.  Others produce some cool content and do some cool traveling.  Basically I'm jealous:)


mm1970

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2018, 12:19:06 PM »
I don't think I'll ever not find the ecosystem of celebrity PF bloggers amusing.

Yes, I agree. They've got themselves a nice little business going.  Some are better than others.  Some seem to be riding on the coat tails of others.  Others produce some cool content and do some cool traveling.  Basically I'm jealous:)

Yes, me too.  I think it's pretty cool.  I enjoy following some of them.  Interesting content - some of it quite well written.  Definitely different methods and lifestyles abound.  I think "I wonder if I could do that?"  But it's not really in my personality.

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2018, 12:25:09 PM »
To put it extremely cynically, the pitch in the FIRE blogosphere is: "I retired early by being super frugal (and getting in bed with affiliate marketers on my lifestyle blog) and you can too!"

To put it extremely generously, the readers know the score. There is a limited way to repackage "life on less/invest the rest". But getting repeated reminders and encouragement in the way of blog posts helps to motivate people and keep the end in mind when things get tough.

The reality is somewhere in the middle. Probably closer to the latter than the former. 

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2018, 12:28:19 PM »
The Frugalwoods have never claimed to retire. They both still work.  Unlike MMM (who to be fair is barely blogging anymore; but says he is retired) she claims her writing as a job; she blogs, does freelance writing, and does the books.  He does some sort of work at home.

It's more "living frugally has allowed us to live our dream life".
Frugalwoods also doesn't seem to have a ton of affiliate income on her blog. Or else she hides her advertising way better than some bloggers.


Though I do think the general "I became rich convincing other people they don't need to be rich" is pretty amusing.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2018, 12:49:20 PM by iowajes »

rothwem

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2018, 02:03:43 PM »
Fucking frugalwoods.  Easily the most worthless podcast I've listened to.  If I recall correctly, they had a pretty insane income (200k+) prior to FIRE and they were lucky enough to buy their house right after the bubble popped 2008.  Its kinda like, "Hey yall, the way to win at roulette is to bet on black!  I bet on black and now I'm a millionaire!".

It wouldn't be so bad if they had actual good ideas in their blog, but its most of the same boring "cook meals at home", "ride a bike places instead of driving", etc.  If you didn't realize that those are ways to save money, I'm not sure what to tell you. 

thenextguy

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2018, 02:19:50 PM »
RIP Frugal Hound :(
« Last Edit: March 05, 2018, 02:21:27 PM by thenextguy »

mm1970

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2018, 03:56:47 PM »
Fucking frugalwoods.  Easily the most worthless podcast I've listened to.  If I recall correctly, they had a pretty insane income (200k+) prior to FIRE and they were lucky enough to buy their house right after the bubble popped 2008.  Its kinda like, "Hey yall, the way to win at roulette is to bet on black!  I bet on black and now I'm a millionaire!".

It wouldn't be so bad if they had actual good ideas in their blog, but its most of the same boring "cook meals at home", "ride a bike places instead of driving", etc.  If you didn't realize that those are ways to save money, I'm not sure what to tell you.
I can't speak to how much money they made, and yeah, sometimes you buy a house at the right time.

But I think the strength in their blog isn't the "tips", although some of them are good & they as for reader suggestions.

It's more the "getting people to rethink their whole lifestyle".  Most of the articles are pretty in-depth and well written, and to me seem like they want you to REALLY THINK about how you are living your life and if it's what you really want.  Does it match your values?

$200k

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2018, 04:16:06 PM »
I enjoy Frugalwoods' approach and am definitely a fan after binge reading the whole blog.  My one criticism is that I wish that every new article from late 2017 and beyond was not an epic 5,000-10,000 word post.

hadabeardonce

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2018, 04:35:37 PM »
What's a frugal wood? Like without Viagra or other pills? ;-)

marble_faun

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #15 on: March 05, 2018, 04:47:28 PM »
I really like the Frugalwoods!  I've sent links to people and will consider buying the book as a gift. Frugalwoods has a gentler tone than MMM, which is good, because not everyone responds to facepunches.

They've always been pretty clear that they got lucky in certain respects. Most significantly, they bought a house that skyrocketed in value. They don't claim that their success is all due to hard work and packing lunch. 

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #16 on: March 05, 2018, 04:51:13 PM »
The value of their house is also in rental income. They didn't cash out the equity. They got lucky in some respects, but also positioned themselves to take advantage of opportunities, they were not handed to them


And while they are high income, she claims it was never absurdly high. It's also easily to live high when you are a high earner, and they have really resisted that.

I agree her posts are a bit long sometimes, but I just skim.

HappierAtHome

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #17 on: March 05, 2018, 04:59:17 PM »
I really like the Frugalwoods!  I've sent links to people and will consider buying the book as a gift. Frugalwoods has a gentler tone than MMM, which is good, because not everyone responds to facepunches.

They've always been pretty clear that they got lucky in certain respects. Most significantly, they bought a house that skyrocketed in value. They don't claim that their success is all due to hard work and packing lunch.

Agree so much with this. They seem very aware of the ways in which they are fortunate. And the gentler tone makes it a much better blog for sharing with certain friends and family than MMM.

nick663

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #18 on: March 05, 2018, 05:37:50 PM »
Maybe it's just the podcast medium but I came away pretty unimpressed with Mrs Frugalwoods on the ChooseFI podcast.  Just didn't feel like I heard anything that was new information.

kendallf

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #19 on: March 05, 2018, 05:59:31 PM »
I haven't listened to the podcasts, but the negativity of a couple of people here misses the point of their blog, I think.

Mrs. Frugalwoods writes well not about the nuts and bolts of investing or budgeting, but about the importance of mindfulness and crafting your lifestyle to suit your goals.  Motivation for doing the atypical (frugality, never going out to eat, etc.) and the importance of consistency in accomplishing these things are also strong points. 

I am probably 20 years older than the Frugalwoods, with grown children of my own, but I have read many of her posts that made me aware of areas that I need to re-examine and strive to improve (think cooking, as I have just returned from eating out as I write this!).

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #20 on: March 05, 2018, 07:19:57 PM »

  Not some PF millionaire who writes a blog with affiliate links, who avoids paying taxes, and plays video games all day.  That don't impressuh me much.   

That doesn't sound like the Frugalwoods at all. They are insanely hard workers. Not many people split their own wood to heat their home for the winter, for instance.

grandep

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #21 on: March 05, 2018, 07:20:12 PM »
I don't think I'll ever not find the ecosystem of celebrity PF bloggers amusing.

Haha.  Thank you for writing that.  Made my day. 

I think I'm more annoyed by just how overwhelmingly pleased with themselves each of them seems to be.  They act like they found the cure for AIDs... but most seem to be benefactors who are only benefitting themselves.

You know who impresses me?  Some person who is terrible at personal finance, with -3% savings rate, but who is a foster parent.  Not some PF millionaire who writes a blog with affiliate links, who avoids paying taxes, and plays video games all day.  That don't impressuh me much.   

What about someone who is great at personal finance, maintains a 10+% savings rate, and is a foster parent? Why do you equate poor financial skills with virtue (and conversely, good financial skills with vice)?

FireLane

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #22 on: March 05, 2018, 07:33:45 PM »
Fucking frugalwoods.  Easily the most worthless podcast I've listened to.  If I recall correctly, they had a pretty insane income (200k+) prior to FIRE and they were lucky enough to buy their house right after the bubble popped 2008.

Do you have a source for that income figure? AFAIK, they've both worked at non-profits for their whole careers.

martyconlonontherun

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #23 on: March 05, 2018, 08:05:54 PM »
I don't find frugalwoods interesting but found nothing wrong about her. I did find the choosefi selling out for a very non-mustachian conference very off-putting. It basically goes against all the advice they would normally give but they are either motivated financially to go or driven by ego to be a presenter.

Penn42

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #24 on: March 05, 2018, 08:29:07 PM »
Being relatively new to the FI/PF blogosphere I've really only checked out three: MMM, jlcollins, and Mad Fientist.  Even then they cover lots of the same stuff, so I don't really see a need to branch out.

This thread is the first I've heard of fw.  I briefly scanned the blog and a couple posts.  Gotta say they seem to have a pretty great thing going for themselves that's very close to what would be my ideal situation.  Of course I'm a long ways away from anything like that, if I even get there at all...

I do seem to think that there's a hole to be filled in this niche blog world of someone who follows these same principles but doesn't have The Perfect Lifetm.

Dicey

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #25 on: March 05, 2018, 10:28:59 PM »
Fucking frugalwoods.  Easily the most worthless podcast I've listened to.  If I recall correctly, they had a pretty insane income (200k+) prior to FIRE and they were lucky enough to buy their house right after the bubble popped 2008.  Its kinda like, "Hey yall, the way to win at roulette is to bet on black!  I bet on black and now I'm a millionaire!".

It wouldn't be so bad if they had actual good ideas in their blog, but its most of the same boring "cook meals at home", "ride a bike places instead of driving", etc.  If you didn't realize that those are ways to save money, I'm not sure what to tell you.
I can't speak to how much money they made, and yeah, sometimes you buy a house at the right time.

But I think the strength in their blog isn't the "tips", although some of them are good & they as for reader suggestions.

It's more the "getting people to rethink their whole lifestyle".  Most of the articles are pretty in-depth and well written, and to me seem like they want you to REALLY THINK about how you are living your life and if it's what you really want.  Does it match your values?
mm1970, I agree with you.

Rothwem, I just don't see the reason for such vitriol. Almost sounds like you're envious. Also, do yo have a citation for that income figure you quoted? I've read the entire blog and don't recall ever seeing a specific number, but I could be wrong.

I will admit, the sesquipedalian loquaciousness sometimes gets to me, but otherwise, I find FW to be quite thought provoking.

And yes, RIP Gracie, the Frugal Hound. What a sweetheart she seemed to be. And kudos to the FW Family for giving her such a nice life.


rothwem

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #26 on: March 06, 2018, 06:22:44 AM »

Rothwem, I just don't see the reason for such vitriol. Almost sounds like you're envious. Also, do yo have a citation for that income figure you quoted? I've read the entire blog and don't recall ever seeing a specific number, but I could be wrong.

I will admit, the sesquipedalian loquaciousness sometimes gets to me, but otherwise, I find FW to be quite thought provoking.


I first heard them on a podcast, and the interviewer straight up asked them about their income.  The husband was making ~150-160ish if I recall correctly, and the wife was making a solid amount as well.  Add to that a house that they bought for a steal that brings in roughly the same amount as my monthly take home income and you would have to have a pretty solid cocaine habit to NOT be successful.  Maybe I should applaud them for staying away from drugs?

As for envy, sure.  I'm envious of plenty of people.  I'd love to have perfect teeth, perfect vision, a 10" long...beard, etc.  Its not the fact that they were lucky that bugs me so much though.  After all, MMM got lucky in almost exactly the same way that the frugalwoods did...a bull market and a high paying job.  I don't mind MMM though.  The frugalwoods put on this fake modesty on the podcast I listened to though and I was really just disgusted.  Then you get to the blog, and hot damn, its even worse.  All that aside, I think I could get over it if they offered really good information.  After all, I'm an engineer and I deal with talented assholes all day.  But when you get to the blog, there's nothing!  Just a high income, educated white couple that doesn't spend extravagantly. 

So to summarize, in order to FIRE like the Frugalwoods did, all you have to do is:
-Be born at the right time
-Be born in the right place
-Have intelligent parents that were born in the right place at the right time
-Have intelligent parents that value education
-Pick exactly the right career
-Have no significant health problems
-Buy a house at a steal (due to being born at the right time)
-THEN pack your lunch and ride your bike to work AND THEN YOU'LL BE A MILLIONAIRE IN VERMONT!
-Then, go and spread the word about how everyone else can be FIRE like you (all the while making money off of affiliate links and ad views/clicks)

Warlord1986

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #27 on: March 06, 2018, 06:51:20 AM »
Never got into the Frugalwoods. Something about the way she writes makes me grit my teeth. I can't articulate why.

I inexplicably hate his beard too. It bothers me.

MayDay

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #28 on: March 06, 2018, 07:05:58 AM »
I don't follow them at all (they sound insufferable).

The review of the book I read said it was bad.

Why do lifestyle bloggers write books? None of them are ever good. Just stop.

LouLou

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #29 on: March 06, 2018, 07:09:58 AM »

Rothwem, I just don't see the reason for such vitriol. Almost sounds like you're envious. Also, do yo have a citation for that income figure you quoted? I've read the entire blog and don't recall ever seeing a specific number, but I could be wrong.

I will admit, the sesquipedalian loquaciousness sometimes gets to me, but otherwise, I find FW to be quite thought provoking.


I first heard them on a podcast, and the interviewer straight up asked them about their income.  The husband was making ~150-160ish if I recall correctly, and the wife was making a solid amount as well.  Add to that a house that they bought for a steal that brings in roughly the same amount as my monthly take home income and you would have to have a pretty solid cocaine habit to NOT be successful.  Maybe I should applaud them for staying away from drugs?

As for envy, sure.  I'm envious of plenty of people.  I'd love to have perfect teeth, perfect vision, a 10" long...beard, etc.  Its not the fact that they were lucky that bugs me so much though.  After all, MMM got lucky in almost exactly the same way that the frugalwoods did...a bull market and a high paying job.  I don't mind MMM though.  The frugalwoods put on this fake modesty on the podcast I listened to though and I was really just disgusted.  Then you get to the blog, and hot damn, its even worse.  All that aside, I think I could get over it if they offered really good information.  After all, I'm an engineer and I deal with talented assholes all day.  But when you get to the blog, there's nothing!  Just a high income, educated white couple that doesn't spend extravagantly. 

So to summarize, in order to FIRE like the Frugalwoods did, all you have to do is:
-Be born at the right time
-Be born in the right place
-Have intelligent parents that were born in the right place at the right time
-Have intelligent parents that value education
-Pick exactly the right career
-Have no significant health problems
-Buy a house at a steal (due to being born at the right time)
-THEN pack your lunch and ride your bike to work AND THEN YOU'LL BE A MILLIONAIRE IN VERMONT!
-Then, go and spread the word about how everyone else can be FIRE like you (all the while making money off of affiliate links and ad views/clicks)

I don't think this is accurate.  I did NOT have a financially stable childhood (spent part of it in homeless shelters), received absolutely no good financial advice from my family growing up, had $0 for college, have not bought a house for a steal, etc.  I still have gotten to a place where I have a high income.  Higher than I could have imagined growing up.

Am I lucky in some ways? Sure! I didn't get cancer right when I started working full time, for example.  Are there systematic issues that make it harder from some people to succeed than others? Yep!  As a society, we have things to work on.  Is my success only because of luck, meaning that my frugality is meaningless? Nope.

These free blogs on the internet are an excellent resource for people like me, who didn't have people talking about compound interest or investments in our families while growing up.  Reading blogs like MMM and Frugalwoods absolutely stopped me from putting on the golden handcuffs. I thought consciously about what kind of life I want to live and realize that my real life goals don't necessary involve spending all the money I make.  It doesn't take a cocaine habit to ruin a high income - just a mortgage, large vehicle car note, eating out for lunch every day, etc.

BuildingFrugalHabits

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #30 on: March 06, 2018, 07:39:30 AM »
Man, tough crowd!  I hadn't been over to their blog in several years but this thread prompted me to go back check it out again.  Sorry to hear about the dog :(

I congratulate them for envisioning and then building their ideal life and taking the time to share it with the world.  They seem like nice folks too.  There's only so many topics one can write about frugality so essentially all of these FI blogs and podcasts are going to be rehashing the same ideas and concepts.  However, I don't see anything wrong with someone putting a fresh spin on it whether it's retiring to start a homestead or travel or go backpacking etc.  The part that interests me is what people are doing with their freedom, not the nuts and bolts of how to save money. 

pachnik

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #31 on: March 06, 2018, 08:10:26 AM »
I've enjoyed the FW blog for a few years now.  IIRC they used to post here in the forum.  I don't know about what kind of $$$ they made  in the city but she often lists their many privileges and doesn't pretend to have bootstrapped from nothing. 

I don't read it word for word but I do like hearing what they are up to.  Their life in rural Vermont isn't something that interests me personally so I read it more for the frugality enforcement.  Also, I like the pictures of their homestead, their little girl.  I was sad to hear that FrugalHound died but I know she had a good life with her people. 

I have a feeling that if I met them in person I would probably like them. 

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #32 on: March 06, 2018, 08:38:57 AM »
From what I've read, they spent many years making low wages and living in a shithole in NYC. They didn't start out making six figures. They kept their expenses very low even they could have increased their "lifestyle," which is admirable. And last time I was on their site, I barely noticed ads or affiliate links.

As far as I know she doesn't run any ads. There are a few affiliate links, but not many. 

I also don't really know why their income matters, because they post their expenses in great detail. Those expenses would be easy even on a tiny income.  And even though they are high income, I don't think they've ever been super high earners, and there were certainly times they were very low earners.

And yeah, they "lucked" into their Cambridge property, but it also sounds like they were a bit insane during their house hunt to find exactly what fit their requirements. They didn't just go out one day and buy the first property they saw.

I can understand they aren't for everyone; but the vitriol seems excessive.

I will say I credit them for me finding out about both the Buy Nothing Group and DAF- both of which have been really really helpful.  MMM gets credit for index funds; we'd only used managed funds before I found him.  All the "pack your lunch", "buy less", "bike to work"- I didn't need a blogger for that.

FIFoFum

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #33 on: March 06, 2018, 08:43:23 AM »
Chances are that if you're on this forum, you're not the intended audience for the Frugalwoods blog or book. There's no reason for negativity just because it's not for you.

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #34 on: March 06, 2018, 09:15:38 AM »
Chances are that if you're on this forum, you're not the intended audience for the Frugalwoods blog or book. There's no reason for negativity just because it's not for you.

Negativity about things not intended for us is pretty much the central core of this entire website and forum.

The PF/FI community at large is incredibly high on their own supply. From the most popular bloggers, down to myself.

Cranky

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #35 on: March 06, 2018, 11:27:23 AM »
Chances are that if you're on this forum, you're not the intended audience for the Frugalwoods blog or book. There's no reason for negativity just because it's not for you.

I don't want to live on a farm in Vermont, and I think the FW are very, very young, but I really enjoy reading their blog.

I also think that MMM works and awful lot more at things that seem fairly horrible than I spend working at my actual job, but I still enjoy reading his blog.

Both of them have interesting non-mainstream things to say about life and money choices, and that's interesting.

I actually prefer the NonConsumer Advocate Blog, because she's probably closer to me in age and life stage, and I admire the way she makes it work.

I'm not actually looking for advice from any of them.

LurkingMustache

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #36 on: March 06, 2018, 12:39:15 PM »
Chances are that if you're on this forum, you're not the intended audience for the Frugalwoods blog or book. There's no reason for negativity just because it's not for you.

Negativity about things not intended for us is pretty much the central core of this entire website and forum.

The PF/FI community at large is incredibly high on their own supply. From the most popular bloggers, down to myself.

I have always received positive responses and helpful tips from folks here when I post.  However, I would agree in general - itís interesting to lurk and just read the huge amounts of general negativity and criticism of others that have differing opinions or lifestyles (reading the healthcare post is hilarious, or even the hate for some internet blogger on this post - my god...).  For a place where a general level of Stoicism is preached you sure do see people sweating a lot about things they have no control over.  Maybe people just get really bored when they are so frugal.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 12:41:58 PM by LurkingMustache »

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #37 on: March 06, 2018, 01:01:50 PM »
Maybe people just get really bored when they are so frugal.

Our entertainment budgets are low.

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #38 on: March 06, 2018, 01:21:26 PM »

mm1970

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #39 on: March 06, 2018, 01:26:29 PM »
I've enjoyed the FW blog for a few years now.  IIRC they used to post here in the forum.  I don't know about what kind of $$$ they made  in the city but she often lists their many privileges and doesn't pretend to have bootstrapped from nothing. 

I don't read it word for word but I do like hearing what they are up to.  Their life in rural Vermont isn't something that interests me personally so I read it more for the frugality enforcement.  Also, I like the pictures of their homestead, their little girl.  I was sad to hear that FrugalHound died but I know she had a good life with her people. 

I have a feeling that if I met them in person I would probably like them.

Yes, I think a lot of people just seem to have decided they "don't like them", and are reading things into them, and their blog, that aren't there. I  think that's pretty common on the internet, to be honest.  In real life, you get to know people and talk to them.  On the internet you see what people want you to see, and you are free to read it any way that you want.

It's easy to read their blog and glom on to a few bits of info, and decide you don't like them.  Or their tone.  Or their writing style.  But so what?  I enjoy the blog - though I agree on a few things.
- it's kind of long.  I skim it.
- I don't really want to live on a million acres in the rural Northeast.  Grew up there.  Been there, done that.
- I'm old.  I mean, I probably have 15 years on these two and so I'm not really their target audience.  I've given some "tips" on FB for their blog, but I don't think they've made it to the blog because...I'm not the target audience.  That's okay.
- MMM is no different, really.  There are things you like, and things you don't, and whatever.


As far as I can tell, they have always been honest about how lucky they are in life.  Not everyone is as fortunate.  So?  I grew up poor and did fine for myself.  But I'm lucky that I'm white, smart, got scholarships, was taught hard work, was raised in a mostly together home (parents divorced when I was a teen), had parents who weren't addicted to any substances, etc.  Oh, it would have helped to be male, but whatever.  I'd have LOVED to have bought my house at a better time.  I would have LOVED to have bought a SECOND house when the downturn hit my city.  But I'm risk averse.  And I SAY if houses drop to $500k again I'm buying one!  But I probably won't.  How can I be mad at someone who carefully watched the market and bought correctly?  Shoot we bought our house 6 days after we started looking.  I try not to regret it, because hindsight is 20/20.

One way to not be so bitter is to make sure you read a lot of other blogs.  I read a blog of a woman who has adopted foster children and is basically barely surviving on no income due to severe health issues.  She writes with such love and grace and commitment to her family and (necessary) frugality.  The only and only blog that I don't miss, ever.  Even though it's often hard to read when they go negative every month.

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #40 on: March 06, 2018, 03:38:59 PM »
One way to not be so bitter is to make sure you read a lot of other blogs.

I don't read these people's blog, and so I can't really express an opinion on them one way or the other. Regarding the use of the word "bitter" though, as my posts in this thread have erred a bit on the cynical side, I feel the need to speak up for my so-called "bitter" brethren here.

It takes a tremendous amount of arrogance to think that you are living life the correct way while everyone else is doing it wrong. This is not a normative statement. Most people in this community possess that arrogance. Myself included.

Save for a few saints, everyone here is fine passing judgment on other people. We do it all the time. Making fun of co-workers for driving gas guzzling clown cars, or otherwise doing it wrong. Making fun of people who fall prey to marketing, or those who have chosen to make marketing their life's work.

I understand that it feels a bit more personal to pass judgment on a blogger with a name and a face, than it does to pass judgment on an anonymous coworker, or an anonymous salesperson who tried to get you to do something ridiculous like finance a car for 84 months, and then was shocked (SHOCKED!!) when you paid in cash and then the whole bus clapped and all that jazz. While it does feel more personal, I'd argue that making a lifestyle blog requires arrogance on top of arrogance (again, not a normative statement). Not only the arrogance I talked about before, but the arrogance to think that your life experience is worth selling. There's nothing wrong with that, but I think that you open yourself up to judgment when you do so.

Passing judgment on others is not a bug, but a feature of personal finance and alternative lifestyle communities. Whether it is keeping up with the Jones's, keeping down with them, or evaluating the Jones's life based on your own utility curve.

Usually this is done by looking to the outside from within. I don't necessarily think it makes a person bitter when they decide to turn the telescope inward though.

Eric

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #41 on: March 06, 2018, 03:43:49 PM »
Their affiliate linking was out of control.  She was squeezing in a paragraph about Personal Capital in just about every post.  I liked the (non-PC) content, but this was driving me nuts and I had to unsubscribe.  I'm sort of wondering if she devoted a whole chapter in her book to PC...

katscratch

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #42 on: March 06, 2018, 04:23:54 PM »
I will admit, the sesquipedalian loquaciousness sometimes gets to me....

This made me giggle :)


When I worked 60 hours weeks for $20k/yr and felt like I was drowning and would never have a solid financial plan, pf blogs seemed so condescending and out of touch with anyone who wasn't a two-income moderate-high earning household.

Frugalwoods was the first blog I found that spoke to me. The message of identifying the life you truly value and making your choices align with that resonated. Acknowledging privilege and ways some of us start out ahead did also. The stories about choices to live without furniture in a crappy NYC flat to still make saving a priority was helpful -- they made purposeful, really smart choices to get them where they are. And their telling of those choices, no matter how minor or repetitive, helped me start to see how I could do the same on my own small scale.

I also really like her essays on consumer culture, especially around raising kids.

Not all writers will be for everyone, not by a long shot, and it doesn't surprise me that the blog doesn't appeal to many forum folk here. But I thought I'd throw my take out there because I owe a lot of my trajectory shift to discovering their blog years back (before Personal Capital, I'll say that much!).

Captain Cactus

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #43 on: March 06, 2018, 05:36:12 PM »
OP here.  I really didn't mean to spark this negativity.  FW cool by me.

mm1970

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #44 on: March 06, 2018, 06:08:00 PM »
One way to not be so bitter is to make sure you read a lot of other blogs.

I don't read these people's blog, and so I can't really express an opinion on them one way or the other. Regarding the use of the word "bitter" though, as my posts in this thread have erred a bit on the cynical side, I feel the need to speak up for my so-called "bitter" brethren here.

It takes a tremendous amount of arrogance to think that you are living life the correct way while everyone else is doing it wrong. This is not a normative statement. Most people in this community possess that arrogance. Myself included.

Save for a few saints, everyone here is fine passing judgment on other people. We do it all the time. Making fun of co-workers for driving gas guzzling clown cars, or otherwise doing it wrong. Making fun of people who fall prey to marketing, or those who have chosen to make marketing their life's work.

I understand that it feels a bit more personal to pass judgment on a blogger with a name and a face, than it does to pass judgment on an anonymous coworker, or an anonymous salesperson who tried to get you to do something ridiculous like finance a car for 84 months, and then was shocked (SHOCKED!!) when you paid in cash and then the whole bus clapped and all that jazz. While it does feel more personal, I'd argue that making a lifestyle blog requires arrogance on top of arrogance (again, not a normative statement). Not only the arrogance I talked about before, but the arrogance to think that your life experience is worth selling. There's nothing wrong with that, but I think that you open yourself up to judgment when you do so.

Passing judgment on others is not a bug, but a feature of personal finance and alternative lifestyle communities. Whether it is keeping up with the Jones's, keeping down with them, or evaluating the Jones's life based on your own utility curve.

Usually this is done by looking to the outside from within. I don't necessarily think it makes a person bitter when they decide to turn the telescope inward though.

This is some good stuff to remember though.  It's easy to be bitter, and negative...and it's also easy to be arrogant, and pass judgment.  And, it's all normal, because we are all human.

Sometimes, though, it helps to step back and remember to try and be KIND.  Yeah, some people deserve facepunches for their stupidity, but they are still people.

This works for all areas of life -
I work hard at feeding my family healthy food and exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy weight.  But I've been fat.  When I was younger and first lost weight, I went through ALL the phases.  The super excited talk-about-it-all-the-time phase.  The cheerleader "if I can do it, you can do it!"  The critical phase "clearly you aren't trying/ don't want it enough".  And now, when I see overweight people, I try to see people.  Not the food in their carts, not their weight, but the people.  Because it's easy to make fun of fat people because it's so visible, we need to stop and be kind.

Same goes for money.  Or anything really.  I've sat in enough PTA meetings where I've heard other parents just venting "I can't believe she's not volunteering more than an hour a week, she's not WORKING?  What is she DOING??"  And "I can't believe more people aren't donating money."  Etc.  I felt like a few times I was constantly reminding everyone that you do not know every little detail about these people.  You don't know if they have a sick parent or a mountain of bills.  Cut it out.

Rosy

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #45 on: March 06, 2018, 06:36:37 PM »
MMM is not for everyone and neither is Frugalwoods. Each blog has a distinctive style.

What I love about their blog is her in-depth review of a reader's case. Quite impressive, although some of her posts could be shorter and still get the point across:).
I don't connect to much else on her blog and I don't pay too much attention to the ads
I find it to be a good blog, just not that suitable for my particular situation, therefore I subscribed and unsubscribed within three months.

The Frugalwoods strike me as a hardworking couple and I am happy to see their success.

grandep

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #46 on: March 06, 2018, 06:43:02 PM »
Chiming in to this thread to also say that I am a big Frugalwoods fan. My SO is not a fan of MMM's tone (even though I personally find it motivating) but she loves Mrs. FW because she can relate to her better. I think their blog is a valuable contribution. I have personally benefited from it quite a bit)

Mtngrl

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #47 on: March 06, 2018, 08:27:22 PM »
  I read a blog of a woman who has adopted foster children and is basically barely surviving on no income due to severe health issues.  She writes with such love and grace and commitment to her family and (necessary) frugality.  The only and only blog that I don't miss, ever.  Even though it's often hard to read when they go negative every month.

I read that blog, too (Notes from the Frugal Trenches.) Completely humbles me every time i read it.

calimom

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #48 on: March 06, 2018, 10:06:45 PM »
Mr. and Mrs. Frugalwoods have humble-attentionwhore down to an art. Or possibly a science. Either way, a well paying one. Good for them, since that seems to be their goal.

Tuskalusa

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #49 on: March 06, 2018, 10:37:57 PM »
Iím a huge fan of the Frugalwoods. They are true to themselves and their values. They are examples of simplicity and environmentalism. They inspire me to spend less and focus more time on connecting with friends and family. Like others have said, they live many of the MMM principles, but speak about it in a gentler way.

Iím going to start reading the book tonight.