Author Topic: What's up with the Frugalwoods?  (Read 140780 times)

westtoeast

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #50 on: March 07, 2018, 05:08:20 AM »
I love the Frugalwoods. They've been one of the more relatable blogs for me. The strategies are simple and I go back to the blog when I need reinforcement of the concepts and the "why" of frugality. I also really enjoy Mrs. Frugalwoods writing, I like the longer articles, and I LOVE the thoughtful case study responses. I also think that they do an pretty good job of owning their privilege and acknowledging many of the advantages they've had. 

I will say, however, I hope that the very high income number that someone here mentioned isn't accurate. On the blog, they talk about their former salaries like they were typical, and often mention that they both worked for non-profits. As someone who knows typical salary for non-profits in their area, I made some assumptions! And because I believed they had a more modest income, I was better able to connect with them and feel inspired by their story. I wish they would re-frame the language on the blog around their salary. A high salary doesn't change the value of the message, but it does change how readers might compare their own situations.

Lmoot

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #51 on: March 07, 2018, 05:30:11 AM »
I've heard of them but never really visited their blog, so thanks to this thread I went and had a look. They seem like they are just trying to live their best life. I like how well organized the blog is and the amount of content. From what I read, MFW is a decent writer, a little less individual personality in the style, but...good at getting the points out while being palatable to a wide general audience and not alienating.

Personally I've dreamed have having a homestead in Vermont (and a winter house in FL). So I think I've found a new blog to read!

Apples

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #52 on: March 07, 2018, 02:00:28 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.

That's so interesting to me.  Because I view them as having humbleness down, but not attention-whoring at all.  Yes, Mrs. FW wrote a book and is now doing a little PF-community book tour.  That's the usual thing that happens when someone writes a book.  I've heard her monthly during the Martinis and Your Money podcast and she is genuine and down to earth.  As much as I remember, neither of the FW has ever said "this is the best way, do it our way, look at us doing great things".  It's always been figuring out their values and then living within them, and on not much money.  And Mrs. FW admits she loves to write, so here she is with a blog and book.  Are they doing something really attention-grabbing and ungenuine that I've just missed the last year or two?

mtnman125

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #53 on: March 07, 2018, 03:30:58 PM »
I've been reading FW for a while- I think the first article I read was about killing their dining out habit.  I like Mrs. FW style and humor.

It resonates with me as I have a young daughter, dog (RIP Frugalhound), and have short-mid term goals to semi-fire in a more rural setting.  Nothing groundbreaking in her posts, just nice reinforcement of habits.

Contrast that with Justin at Root of Good. There is a TON of really good information and he is a really smart dude, but doesn't resonate with me as his frugality strikes me as cheap/"unfair" to his kids outside of their awesome travel budget.  No doubt it works for him though.

The affiliate links drive me crazy, even though i use Personal Capital, Ebates, etc.  I just dont need to be reminded EVERY post.

herbgeek

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #54 on: March 08, 2018, 06:27:09 AM »
I just finished the book.  It was good in that there were a number of stories not told on the blog - which I've been an avid fan of for a couple of years.  Not everyone likes their financial advice with a side of testosterone and face punches.   The book had a more serious tone, and not as funny as the blog.

MasterStache

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #55 on: March 08, 2018, 07:40:00 AM »
I followed FW for a little bit. But the writing was just too much, and seemed like a lot of repetition. I figured out the "nuts and bolts" of FIRE a few years ago. I do take bits and pieces from different blog sometimes. I enjoyed their post about painting cabinets and giving their stairs a makeover (both of which I have done). I've learned about churning and other side ventures through MMM. And I have enjoyed learning more about detailed financial strategies from the Mad Fientist.

Overall I don't necessarily follow any blog on a daily basis.

Dicey

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #56 on: March 08, 2018, 08:14:00 AM »
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.

That's so interesting to me.  Because I view them as having humbleness down, but not attention-whoring at all.  Yes, Mrs. FW wrote a book and is now doing a little PF-community book tour.  That's the usual thing that happens when someone writes a book.  I've heard her monthly during the Martinis and Your Money podcast and she is genuine and down to earth.  As much as I remember, neither of the FW has ever said "this is the best way, do it our way, look at us doing great things".  It's always been figuring out their values and then living within them, and on not much money.  And Mrs. FW admits she loves to write, so here she is with a blog and book.  Are they doing something really attention-grabbing and ungenuine that I've just missed the last year or two?
My thinking aligns with yours, Apples. Calimom's comment surprised me and left me scratching my head a little bit. The FW blog is not overly monetized and she's doing what everyone does to promote a book. Note that MFW used to contribute regularly here. She could easily have hopped back on to promote her new book, but did not.

Calimom's name calling strikes me as more than a little unkind, possibly even tiptoeing into the realm of jealousy.

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #57 on: March 08, 2018, 09:50:18 AM »
Again I feel the need to stick of up for Calimom and others here.

"Attentionwhoring" is a crass term, and so I get why it puts people off. But we all understand what it means. Like most things, it is a sliding scale, with the meekest of people on one end, and Egyptian Pharos on the other end.

Lifestyle bloggers aren't commanding slaves to build monuments to their greatness or anything, but you have to see how they're further to one end than say, someone who hasn't touched social media in several months. I feel like this may come down to a type B/Introvert vs type A/Extrovert kind of thing. Most lifestyle bloggers are probably type A and extroverted. To me, and others, it's just kind of an obvious fact of life that these people crave attention on another order of magnitude than we do. Because of this, their product tends to be too "fluffy" to be of any use to us.

Perhaps there's something to be said that if you don't have anything nice universally inoffensive to say, then say nothing at all. But the PF community clearly doesn't live by this adage. I posit that if you're upset by someone pointing out a rather obvious truth that (the royal) you enjoy shining a spotlight on yourself, that is probably a "you" problem. It doesn't necessarily make the other person bitter or jealous.

I think phrases like "attention seeking" or "egotistical" tend to be pretty loaded, but sometimes, they are just simply matters of fact. Blasting photos of yourself on the Internet is attention seeking behavior. Throwing a party in your own honor, such as for a birthday or a wedding, is egotistical. These things aren't "bad", but it is what it is.

The great news is that there is plenty of reading material out there for everyone. Plenty of websites give concise, actionable advice that you can follow to lead a more efficient life. Recipe sharing websites and youtube how-tos are great examples. There are plenty of writers that educate without telling and re-telling their life story. Buffet's Berkshire letter is a great example.

FWIW, people could flip the script and be critical of these as well. My overnight oats recipe is boring. Letters to shareholders are dry and devoid of personality. These are inarguably true statements.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2018, 09:52:27 AM by mathlete »

scissorbill

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #58 on: March 08, 2018, 10:21:06 AM »
I like the Frugalwoods.  I think they became popular with their sodastream hack and then people stayed for the writing.  I will definitely check out their book.  From the library as soon as it's my turn, our state ordered 7 copies.

NorthernBlitz

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #59 on: March 08, 2018, 10:59:43 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 did listen to her interview on Stacking Benjamins. My guess is that they generally acknowledge these things. She was constantly talking about how privileged they were (almost annoyingly so). I'm also not sure how your bullet points make them different from MMM (and me, and I'd imagine many people who post here, or are pursuing FI).

Ultimately, I thought that her message was more about (1) realizing that the status quo "American Dream" wasn't making them happy, (2) trying to redefine their own priorities to try to maximize happiness and (3) executing your plan (through trial and error) instead of falling into the pre-programmed "you have to love your job (more than your family)" message society gives us all. It's probably a common refrain for people that post on a frugality message board, but I think society will be better off if it becomes adopted at a larger scale.

I don't think that her message was "do what we did and you'll get rich".

I like her message (it's not really different from most FI podcasters I listen to) because I think most people would get depressed at the end of the road if they are only seeking FI for FI's sake. It's a means to an end and not an end in itself.

Apples

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #60 on: March 08, 2018, 11:16:51 AM »
Again I feel the need to stick of up for Calimom and others here.

"Attentionwhoring" is a crass term, and so I get why it puts people off. But we all understand what it means. Like most things, it is a sliding scale, with the meekest of people on one end, and Egyptian Pharos on the other end.

Lifestyle bloggers aren't commanding slaves to build monuments to their greatness or anything, but you have to see how they're further to one end than say, someone who hasn't touched social media in several months. I feel like this may come down to a type B/Introvert vs type A/Extrovert kind of thing. Most lifestyle bloggers are probably type A and extroverted. To me, and others, it's just kind of an obvious fact of life that these people crave attention on another order of magnitude than we do. Because of this, their product tends to be too "fluffy" to be of any use to us.

Perhaps there's something to be said that if you don't have anything nice universally inoffensive to say, then say nothing at all. But the PF community clearly doesn't live by this adage. I posit that if you're upset by someone pointing out a rather obvious truth that (the royal) you enjoy shining a spotlight on yourself, that is probably a "you" problem. It doesn't necessarily make the other person bitter or jealous.


And I'm going to take this opportunity to say that calling someone "attentionwhoring" is an insult.  Because you think of yourself as an introvert, can I call you a cave dweller who never comes out into the sunlight with others?  Calimom's point could have been made with "attention seeking" or something similar.  That's why we're reacting the way we are.  And you and I have different opinions of what would make someone a person who "craves attention".  I don't see that with the Frugalwoods and their blog.  In fact they kept their identities secret for years

Cromacster

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #61 on: March 08, 2018, 11:43:04 AM »
Again I feel the need to stick of up for Calimom and others here.

"Attentionwhoring" is a crass term, and so I get why it puts people off. But we all understand what it means. Like most things, it is a sliding scale, with the meekest of people on one end, and Egyptian Pharos on the other end.

Lifestyle bloggers aren't commanding slaves to build monuments to their greatness or anything, but you have to see how they're further to one end than say, someone who hasn't touched social media in several months. I feel like this may come down to a type B/Introvert vs type A/Extrovert kind of thing. Most lifestyle bloggers are probably type A and extroverted. To me, and others, it's just kind of an obvious fact of life that these people crave attention on another order of magnitude than we do. Because of this, their product tends to be too "fluffy" to be of any use to us.

Perhaps there's something to be said that if you don't have anything nice universally inoffensive to say, then say nothing at all. But the PF community clearly doesn't live by this adage. I posit that if you're upset by someone pointing out a rather obvious truth that (the royal) you enjoy shining a spotlight on yourself, that is probably a "you" problem. It doesn't necessarily make the other person bitter or jealous.


And I'm going to take this opportunity to say that calling someone "attentionwhoring" is an insult.  Because you think of yourself as an introvert, can I call you a cave dweller who never comes out into the sunlight with others?  Calimom's point could have been made with "attention seeking" or something similar.  That's why we're reacting the way we are.  And you and I have different opinions of what would make someone a person who "craves attention".  I don't see that with the Frugalwoods and their blog.  In fact they kept their identities secret for years.

To have a successful lifestyle blog/book you have to "crave attention".  Is it attention whore status?  I'd it's a bit extreme when talking about a generally accepted literal definition.  If were talking in hyperbole, I'd say it fits.

at∑ten∑tion whore
nounUSderogatory
noun: attention whore; plural noun: attention whores
a person who behaves in a provocative, outrageous, or reprehensible manner in order to attract attention.

I'd say most FIRE blogs could be considered provocative and outrageous.

Edit to add Definition and clairification
« Last Edit: March 08, 2018, 11:47:48 AM by Cromacster »

DarkandStormy

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #62 on: March 08, 2018, 12:50:54 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.

Fincon?

FireLane

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #63 on: March 08, 2018, 12:52:30 PM »
I agree that there are some surprisingly unkind comments towards the Frugalwoods. If anything, their attitude is far gentler and less judgmental than most of the other FIRE bloggers out there.

I read their site regularly, and it's one of the few I can say that about, because they found a way to keep it fresh and interesting. They transitioned from a personal-finance and frugality blog to more of a homesteading/lifestyle blog, and that's pretty cool. I admire that they decided exactly what they wanted out of life and then made it happen.

Are they attention-seekers because they write a blog telling internet strangers about their life? I mean, I guess. But no more so than any of us who write journals here on this board.

dodojojo

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #64 on: March 08, 2018, 01:11:17 PM »
Featured in the Guardian, accompanied by the usual comments that come with frugality/FIRE articles.


https://www.theguardian.com/money/2018/mar/08/how-to-retire-early-frugal-spending#comment-113281151

Warlord1986

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #65 on: March 08, 2018, 01:46:16 PM »
Featured in the Guardian, accompanied by the usual comments that come with frugality/FIRE articles.


https://www.theguardian.com/money/2018/mar/08/how-to-retire-early-frugal-spending#comment-113281151

From the article:

"Frugal insourcing led us to a more egalitarian partnership devoid of traditional gender roles and reliant instead upon a system of routines and an agreed-upon divvying up of tasks."

Also from the article: she used 'frugalized'.

Now I can identify why she irks me so much. @calimom is right. 

Dicey

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #66 on: March 08, 2018, 02:04:08 PM »
Featured in the Guardian, accompanied by the usual comments that come with frugality/FIRE articles.


https://www.theguardian.com/money/2018/mar/08/how-to-retire-early-frugal-spending#comment-113281151

From the article:

"Frugal insourcing led us to a more egalitarian partnership devoid of traditional gender roles and reliant instead upon a system of routines and an agreed-upon divvying up of tasks."

Also from the article: she used 'frugalized'.

Now I can identify why she irks me so much. @calimom is right.
I can totally understand why this irks you, but that does not make calimom right.

Dicey

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #67 on: March 08, 2018, 02:57:36 PM »
I am willing to bet that she just got fed up with people telling her she should write a book, so she just did it.

mm1970

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #68 on: March 08, 2018, 04:14:15 PM »
Featured in the Guardian, accompanied by the usual comments that come with frugality/FIRE articles.


https://www.theguardian.com/money/2018/mar/08/how-to-retire-early-frugal-spending#comment-113281151

From the article:

"Frugal insourcing led us to a more egalitarian partnership devoid of traditional gender roles and reliant instead upon a system of routines and an agreed-upon divvying up of tasks."

Also from the article: she used 'frugalized'.

Now I can identify why she irks me so much. @calimom is right.
I can totally understand why this irks you, but that does not make calimom right.
Was she an English major?  That may explain the wording.  Which can be irksome.

HappierAtHome

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #69 on: March 08, 2018, 04:21:46 PM »
I am willing to bet that she just got fed up with people telling her she should write a book, so she just did it.

Plus she loves writing. Good on her!

wordnerd

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #70 on: March 08, 2018, 04:40:39 PM »
I am willing to bet that she just got fed up with people telling her she should write a book, so she just did it.

Plus she loves writing. Good on her!

Seriously. This forum: "Be a badass, so you can follow your dreams...unless your dreams make you an attention-whore."

calimom

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #71 on: March 08, 2018, 08:22:29 PM »
Oy, they're being crucified in The Guardian comments.  But this excerpt:

"Gratitude and respect began to infuse our interactions"

Agreed, "attention seeking" is probably a better descriptive term. Duly noted, and thank you. The internet is a funny place. For every Frugalwoods and #vanlife, there are probably 1000 others who would love to have a successful blog or Instagram presence that made them famous and/or gave financial benefits. Seriously, good for them. They are exploiting no one besides themselves. Much of their advice seems painfully obvious, like spending less than you make, purchasing used vehicles, or finding old lamps in the trash on the street and DIY rewiring them. These things are of course helpful to those thinking of new or different ways to live.

I personally find the MMM blog and forums very useful. I like the edgier advice and humor (almost nonexistent on the FW blog) to be a style that fits my own circumstance in a better fashion. May the Frugalwoods find the life and path they desire. There is a lid for every pot.

marble_faun

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #72 on: March 08, 2018, 09:23:54 PM »
I don't think long-time readers of MMM or MMM forum participants are the main audience for the book, honestly. 

She is trying to reach folks who haven't had exposure to the concept, who are voluntarily wasting money and going into debt, not realizing that another way of life is possible.

Reading through the Guardian article comments, I'm struck by the fatalism and disbelief of people who don't get it. This is the population she is trying to reach (though unsuccessfully in this particular case).

Dicey

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #73 on: March 08, 2018, 11:33:29 PM »
I personally find the MMM blog and forums very useful. I like the edgier advice and humor (almost nonexistent on the FW blog) to be a style that fits my own circumstance in a better fashion. May the Frugalwoods find the life and path they desire. There is a lid for every pot.
Totally agree with you,  calimom! Well said.

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #74 on: March 09, 2018, 06:37:25 AM »
Because you think of yourself as an introvert, can I call you a cave dweller who never comes out into the sunlight with others? 

Be my guest. It's not strictly true, but I get the implication. I stay in 6+/7 nights of the week and know just one of my neighbors. And that's only because we had a property issue to settle between us.

But mostly, I'm fine with it because I know where I am, and turnabout here is fair play. Kind of my point. See below:

The vitriol expressed here toward them...

When a car is termed a "clown-car", what do we think the implication is about the driver? What is the implication of posting about someone (even anonymously) on a board titled; "The Wall of Shame and Comedy"?

I think it's only vitriol/bitterness/jealousy when it's pointed at someone that we like, or someone within the circle.

Seriously. This forum: "Be a badass, so you can follow your dreams...unless your dreams make you an attention-whore."

I don't think anyone is implying that.

papillon

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #75 on: March 09, 2018, 08:48:15 AM »
I used to follow the frugalwoods blog.  I moved from Boston many years ago to a LCOL state and saved a great deal of money.  I don't like how Liz defines herself as average, middle class, nothing special, no high incomes, etc.  They were making 200k+ in Boston in their 20s.  Do they still make this?  Linkedin shows he is currently an executive director.  So it seems he just works from home now.  They bought their $466,000 Cambridge home with $60,000 down according to an older Forbes article.  While I think they have done a great job, I just don't like how they portray themselves.  Am I missing something?  They are similar to MMM but he seems more straightforward about where the money came from.  The frugalwoods, for me, seem like one of those annoying portlandia couples.

RIP frugal hound.   

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #76 on: March 09, 2018, 11:07:19 AM »
I decided to read the guardian piece, some of the user comments, and listen to the Financial Independence podcast in order to develop an opinion that is a little less... middle of the road than the one I've been expressing so far.

I think I'm at the root of the divide here. FIRE is fucking cool. A lot of people get really geeked out on and, and it's why we're all here. Frugality is an important step on the path to financial independence. But if I were to rank in order, the steps to achieving a kick-ass, FI lifestyle, I'd do them as follows:

1.) Have a high income job
2.) Get a cooperative partner
2b.) It really helps if they have a high income job too.
3.) Watch your spending.

For a lot of people pursing financial independence, 1.) and 2.) have already been met. Which means the whole, "Watch your spending" thing, really is the marginal difference.

To a mass audience though, that doesn't play. It'd be like blogging about a road-trip across America, but in each blog post, you discuss how your windshield wipers helped you get from place to place. Yeah, they were important during the rainy parts, but the engine and transmission were doing the heavy lifting.

To white collar professionals who have been living fat and happy on bloated spending, blog posts about how you cut out restaurants might seem eye-opening. This is the main audience of FIRE blogs. At least it was a few years ago. To the average income public though, for example, those who read The Guardian, you're describing every day life as "frugal".

The "painting the kitchen cabinets" thing caught a lot of flack in the comments. That's because even caring about the color of kitchen cabinets is already a rich person's concern. And then on top of that, they think it is particularly frugal of them to do it themselves instead of hiring a contractor. They're getting rightfully roasted on that IMO. It's tonedeaf.

It's nice that they acknowledge their privilege, but there is getting it, and then there is "Getting It". Thinking the kitchen cabinet story (or really their entire story in general) would play to the readership of a large newspaper shows that they don't "Get It".

Tyson

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #77 on: March 09, 2018, 11:49:04 AM »
I decided to read the guardian piece, some of the user comments, and listen to the Financial Independence podcast in order to develop an opinion that is a little less... middle of the road than the one I've been expressing so far.

I think I'm at the root of the divide here. FIRE is fucking cool. A lot of people get really geeked out on and, and it's why we're all here. Frugality is an important step on the path to financial independence. But if I were to rank in order, the steps to achieving a kick-ass, FI lifestyle, I'd do them as follows:

1.) Have a high income job
2.) Get a cooperative partner
2b.) It really helps if they have a high income job too.
3.) Watch your spending.

For a lot of people pursing financial independence, 1.) and 2.) have already been met. Which means the whole, "Watch your spending" thing, really is the marginal difference.

To a mass audience though, that doesn't play. It'd be like blogging about a road-trip across America, but in each blog post, you discuss how your windshield wipers helped you get from place to place. Yeah, they were important during the rainy parts, but the engine and transmission were doing the heavy lifting.

To white collar professionals who have been living fat and happy on bloated spending, blog posts about how you cut out restaurants might seem eye-opening. This is the main audience of FIRE blogs. At least it was a few years ago. To the average income public though, for example, those who read The Guardian, you're describing every day life as "frugal".

The "painting the kitchen cabinets" thing caught a lot of flack in the comments. That's because even caring about the color of kitchen cabinets is already a rich person's concern. And then on top of that, they think it is particularly frugal of them to do it themselves instead of hiring a contractor. They're getting rightfully roasted on that IMO. It's tonedeaf.

It's nice that they acknowledge their privilege, but there is getting it, and then there is "Getting It". Thinking the kitchen cabinet story (or really their entire story in general) would play to the readership of a large newspaper shows that they don't "Get It".

I disagree.  I had #1 and #2 for most of my life and had very little saved up by the time I hit 40.  I wasted/spent it all.... IME, #3 is the CRITICAL piece to becoming FI or FIRE. 

Based on your specific carps, I'd ask you what kind of car you drive and what is your current savings rate?  You sound like someone with moderate to high expenses that is bitter about the need to cut back more.  Maybe I'm wrong, but that's how your coming off to me in this thread.

papillon

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #78 on: March 09, 2018, 12:43:12 PM »
https://www.forbes.com/sites/debtfreeguys/2018/03/07/yes-lgbt-people-can-overcome-heterosexual-privilege/#64eae91fbc60

Here's a new one: Yes, LGBT People Can Overcome Heterosexual Privilege   

I can't read all of it or listen to it.  She is too much.

She wants to reach a broader audience, but after reading the comments on On Point and the Guardian, it doesn't seem to be going too well.

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #79 on: March 09, 2018, 12:53:58 PM »
Quote
"Frugal insourcing led us to a more egalitarian partnership devoid of traditional gender roles and reliant instead upon a system of routines and an agreed-upon divvying up of tasks."

I'm not surprised that the individual who wrote the sentence above is not universally admired.

I am surprised that so many thoughtful people in this thread have responded to critics with some version of You're just jealous.

I don't understand that though- he does the log splitting and snow removal. She does the gardening and housekeeping.  It seems like most childcare duties fall to her.
Is it because he bakes?   


Are there really that many people who do "man's work"/"women's work" vs. "agreed upon divvying up of tasks"?  I mean, my husband gets most of the "man's work" we've "agreed upon that" because he is categorically stronger than me; I get most of the "women's work" because I have to do something while he mows the lawn or repairs the roof.  But he also does the cooking because I'm a shit cook.


I mean I'm glad they, like I, decided who does what work- but I also think it doesn't really seem "devoid of traditional gender roles"
« Last Edit: March 09, 2018, 12:57:26 PM by iowajes »

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #80 on: March 09, 2018, 12:54:01 PM »
I disagree.  I had #1 and #2 for most of my life and had very little saved up by the time I hit 40.  I wasted/spent it all.... IME, #3 is the CRITICAL piece to becoming FI or FIRE. 

Based on your specific carps, I'd ask you what kind of car you drive and what is your current savings rate?  You sound like someone with moderate to high expenses that is bitter about the need to cut back more.  Maybe I'm wrong, but that's how your coming off to me in this thread.

I'll put it this way, if I'm playing a game where the goal is to hit FI as soon as possible, I'd much rather start out with 1 or and then work on getting 3, then I would start out with 3 and work on getting to 1 or 2.

I drive a 2008 Honda Civic and save 60% of my income. What else would you like to know?

ReadySetMillionaire

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #81 on: March 09, 2018, 12:58:10 PM »
It's nice that they acknowledge their privilege, but there is getting it, and then there is "Getting It". Thinking the kitchen cabinet story (or really their entire story in general) would play to the readership of a large newspaper shows that they don't "Get It".

This is an overall excellent post, but this particular observation is so dead on that I almost stood up and clapped. 

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #82 on: March 09, 2018, 01:00:06 PM »
Quote
"Frugal insourcing led us to a more egalitarian partnership devoid of traditional gender roles and reliant instead upon a system of routines and an agreed-upon divvying up of tasks."

I'm not surprised that the individual who wrote the sentence above is not universally admired.

I am surprised that so many thoughtful people in this thread have responded to critics with some version of You're just jealous.

I don't understand that though- he does the log splitting and snow removal. She does the gardening and housekeeping.  IT seems like most childcare duties fall to her.
Is it because he bakes?

Are there really that many people who do "man's work"/"women's work" vs. "agreed upon divvying up of tasks"?  I mean, my husband gets most of the "man's work" we've "agreed upon that" because he is categorically stronger than me; I get most of the "women's work" because I have to do something while he mows the lawn or repairs the roof.  But he also does the cooking because I'm a shit cook.

I mean I'm glad they, like I, decided who does what work- but I also think it doesn't really seem "devoid of traditional gender roles"

It's just a fancy way to say "we discussed different tasks that need doing and divvied them up based on skill/ability/willingness".  By saying it the way she did it shows they are better and more thoughtful because they don't believe in traditional gender roles....even if they tend to follow them.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2018, 01:03:50 PM by Cromacster »

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #83 on: March 09, 2018, 01:03:55 PM »
It's just a fancy way to say "we discussed different tasks that need doing and divvied them up based on skill/ability/willingness".  By saying it the way she did it shows they are better and more thoughtful because they don't believe in traditional gender roles....even if they tend to follow them.

This is what I thought as well. She used a bunch of five dollar words to act as if they discovered the magic of non-traditional gender roles. In a world in which 23% of children are raised by single mothers and women 25 and older have a 74% labor participation rate, the face of gender equality and egalitarianism is a privileged blogger. Nah.

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #84 on: March 09, 2018, 01:20:37 PM »
This is an overall excellent post, but this particular observation is so dead on that I almost stood up and clapped.

Why thank you!


Tyson

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #85 on: March 09, 2018, 01:35:17 PM »
I disagree.  I had #1 and #2 for most of my life and had very little saved up by the time I hit 40.  I wasted/spent it all.... IME, #3 is the CRITICAL piece to becoming FI or FIRE. 

Based on your specific carps, I'd ask you what kind of car you drive and what is your current savings rate?  You sound like someone with moderate to high expenses that is bitter about the need to cut back more.  Maybe I'm wrong, but that's how your coming off to me in this thread.

I'll put it this way, if I'm playing a game where the goal is to hit FI as soon as possible, I'd much rather start out with 1 or and then work on getting 3, then I would start out with 3 and work on getting to 1 or 2.

I drive a 2008 Honda Civic and save 60% of my income. What else would you like to know?

OK, since you're actually doing very well with frugality, I'll take your posts more seriously.  I had you lumped in with the newbies that come here and want to FIRE ASAP!!!! and then don't want to do any of the actual hard work of cutting back.  Clearly that's not you and I apologize. 

I don't read FW either because it all reads like a softer, more watered down version of MMM and I only have so much time in a day (although enough time to post on a blog on the middle of a Friday). 

mathlete

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #86 on: March 09, 2018, 01:41:48 PM »
OK, since you're actually doing very well with frugality, I'll take your posts more seriously.  I had you lumped in with the newbies that come here and want to FIRE ASAP!!!! and then don't want to do any of the actual hard work of cutting back.  Clearly that's not you and I apologize. 

I don't read FW either because it all reads like a softer, more watered down version of MMM and I only have so much time in a day (although enough time to post on a blog on the middle of a Friday).

No worries! I understand the trepidation. While skimming The Guardian comments section, I saw quite a few people saying something to the effect of,

"Psh! Wait until they're 35 and broke and have to go back to work."

People like that clearly don't know the ins and outs of this whole game.

But the plurality of people making what could be perceived as negative comments, had sound points to make. Sometimes it can be tough to suss out who is who.

Urchina

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #87 on: March 09, 2018, 07:25:33 PM »

Neither FrugalWoods nor MMM is happy because of money, theyíre happy because theyíve engineered their lives into what makes them happy. A solid financial situation is the pre-requisite for that, but itís the starting line, not the finish line.

This right here is what we all should be spending our time on. +100000. ;)

Bee21

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #88 on: March 09, 2018, 09:42:07 PM »
If a blogger I read regularly publishes a book, I usually buy it to support the author. For 22$ I definitely won't be buying it, maybe later when the price is reasonable. Most of these blog books are not that good unfortunately, I am disappointed most of the time, but if I enjoy reading a blog it is a small price to pay. Paying 22 for a book about frugality is unfrugal ridiculous.

Not sure why the people around here are upset about mr an mrs fw having a decent income from their day jobs. What's wrong with working hard, being successful and making money from your job? They are educated people and probably worked hard to get where they are professionally. They never pretended to be retired. They say they work from home. And their income is none of our business really. If a couple makes around 200k by working normal jobs, nobody trashes them. It is great. If they make this amount and save most of it and dare to blog about painting their own kitchen, driving an old car, cutting their own hair, the knives are out. Really? Their message has never been about how to be poor. It was about living a frugal life and enjoying it. And mrs fw must be really good at marketing and communication, as their book campaign is pretty impressive. They are everywhere. Well done.

 I agree with the comments about her writing style though. some of those elaborate odes to frugality and the joys of housework are a bit hard to read. The sentence quoted before was particularly cringeworthy. She should work on editing her prose a bit more. Being more frugal with words would be great.

They are not the first people capitalising on this frugality trend (looking at you mmm), so let's just take it as another well deserved success story. I wish them well. And I hope she keeps writing her blog.


WynnDuffy73

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #89 on: March 10, 2018, 05:56:53 AM »
The Frugalwoods story is somewhat relatable.  Quitting my cubicle job and moving out to a large acre, rural property is exactly what I want to do.  I enjoyed their posts on their search for the perfect homestead and I also like seeing the photos of their 66 acre property.. 

Yes, the overuse (or any use) of the term privilege makes me roll my eyes but overall I enjoy the blog.

englishteacheralex

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #90 on: March 10, 2018, 08:48:34 AM »
I love the blog; I read every post over a week or so back in 2016. Then watched with great interest as they accomplished their mission of buying a homestead in Vermont and working like crazy to keep it going. They are thriving and it's really fun to live the dream with them. And I think her writing is great.

There's an element of living vicariously that happens with the best blogs--I love imagining myself on a homestead in Vermont. I grew up near Vermont and my life in Hawaii is so different that it's very pleasant and nostalgic to put myself in their shoes and imagine myself in a parallel universe. And the narrative of creating a well-defined dream, working hard to achieve it, and then succeeding is very powerful.

I didn't buy the book because I'm too frugal and I hate, hate, hate with a passion buying books new.

I read as much as I could get on Amazon for free and it kinda didn't do much for me. I feel a little guilty about that, but the tone or something? Bite sized (yes, very long but easily skimmable), light chunks of "living the frugal dream" blog posts worked really well for me, but a book-length situation (oh, I really feel like a jerk) kinda feels like much ado about nothing. A little sanctimonious, somehow? A story that to my mind is interesting and cool, but not that amazing, except inasmuch as our contemporary culture doesn't really encourage the lifestyle that they celebrate, so they are counter-cultural...but I mean, it's not that counter-cultural.

I say all that, but you know what they say about critics. It's easy to pontificate about somebody's work, but hey, she had a couple of praise worthy goals that she set out to accomplish and she legitimately made them happen. You think that's easy? Good on them. Creating something is to be celebrated, and I think I can take my little opinions and go stuff them. Tell you what, at least it's not Eat, Pray, Love. Give me Meet the Frugalwoods any day of the week.


MMMarbleheader

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #91 on: March 10, 2018, 11:07:11 AM »
I bought the book.l for my wife. Her an mrs frugal woods had a very similar path with americore and living on a budget. Big difference is we got pregnant at 25 and the frugalwoods struggled for a while. My wife has been a stay at home mom since so we missed a lot of the "dink" years. She has really liked it so far and reading a gentler female voice works better with her than MMM or even Simple Path to Wealth.

MMMarbleheader

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #92 on: March 10, 2018, 11:24:14 AM »
Also I really identified with the frugalwoods due to living in an affluent suburb of Boston, I see double income couples in their late 20s and early 30s who easily make of $200k just throwing money away. I can see how they are getting killed on the comments when compared to average Americans. But Boston is a very classist area where college grads marry each other and there is very little mixing. Two electrical engineers that got married and had their colleges paid for could be pretty close to the frugalwoods if they saved. Although they got very lucky with their home inc Cambridge though they did put a lot of research into buying.

WynnDuffy73

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #93 on: March 11, 2018, 07:45:20 AM »
Itís an interesting story but itís mislabeled.   Itís not an early retirement story.  Itís a work remotely story.  From what Iíve read her husband maintained his high paying IT job but he now just works remotely. 

I'm a red panda

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #94 on: March 11, 2018, 01:28:23 PM »
Until this media tour, I don't remember them calling themselves retired. Just FI.

I mean, she works as a freelance writer. And I think he has always kept his job.

nottoolatetostart

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #95 on: March 11, 2018, 03:58:49 PM »
I bought and enjoyed the book. I was pleasantly surprised by this book. Last year, she had a blog post about a car battery replacement expense they had incurred that month. It gave me confidence to replace my husband's car battery. I enjoy "paying" people back for their help. I now have a lifelong skill.

Her message was great and I enjoy consuming content like this. We are FI yet (gasp!) my husband works doing something he is passionate about. I am not her target audience but I hope it will inspire a friend of mine who does not "get it" yet.  Most of the population does not get it yet. The appeal of her book could be wide ranging.  To me, she is like the gentler version of MMM's face punch.

I don't get why so many people hate on the FW's  and why these comments are negative here. This kind of attitude prevents people from stepping out to be successful in our community. She wrote a book. She loves to write. This is her thing. Writing a book soubds hard. She did a great job. Who cares if she is FI or not? She is monetizing this. Awesome! Most of us would do the same thing if given the opportunity. It takes guts to do what she did. Especially with all the haters out there.  Kudos to them! 

herbgeek

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #96 on: March 11, 2018, 05:07:46 PM »
Quote
I don't remember them calling themselves retired.

They still don't.  They say FI. Its the people interviewing them who are saying that.

Carrie

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #97 on: March 11, 2018, 05:09:59 PM »
It is awesome to me that the Frugalwoods family identified their family goals and put in place actionable to-do items to live their homesteading dreams. This is all kinds of inspirational. How many people waste entire decades never even exploring what would give them peace or their ideal life.

I also appreciate the detailed blog posts of country living in the NE. I realize it's not for me. :)

cerat0n1a

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #98 on: March 12, 2018, 05:44:32 AM »
From the article:

"Frugal insourcing led us to a more egalitarian partnership devoid of traditional gender roles and reliant instead upon a system of routines and an agreed-upon divvying up of tasks."

That's the kind of quote that would play well to the Guardian readership (or at least the common stereotype of Guardian readers in the UK.)

Obviously, the comments section on any mass market media website is filled with lunatics.

hadabeardonce

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Re: What's up with the Frugalwoods?
« Reply #99 on: March 12, 2018, 09:58:02 AM »
The Frugalwoods were mentioned on PBS News Hour: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EU6607PgzCE&t=0s

MMM was displayed in a graphic during the segment. Is frugality too mainstream now?