A Money Coach in Canada

Follow & Subscribe

If you’re anything like me and (former actor turned author) Meg Tilly, you may be increasingly queezy about the economy.

I’m preparing for the worst:  a drawn out decade of unemployment, low stock prices/portfolio values and declining property values (perhaps good news for a lot of people I know in Vancouver!).

It’s easy to be casual about our personal money management when all is going well (and politically easy to assume people who are struggling/homeless have only themselves to blame) but as more and more people we know lose their jobs, and as the homes and condos around us sell for less, I predict that we Canadians will change our lifestyles significantly and become much more engaged with our finances.

That result, at least, is a good thing. But to get there, we need to get past the anxiety paralysis that can often overtake us.  I advise that we start now to find techniques which allow us to relax, regain our clear thinking, and move forward in constructive (even if difficult) ways.  Here are a few I found:

On a very pragmatic level, Ron at   The Wisdom Journal came up with several solutions to emotional issues about money mgt:

  • If you money intimidates you, you’re a prime candidate for automation.
  • If you fear not having enough to the point that you’re an extreme saver, crunch some numbers and project exactly how much you’ll need and when you’ll need it to ensure a comfortable retirement.
  • If you fear the loss of status, decide what luxuries are important to you and let the rest go.
  • If you fear not having enough to make your debt payments, establish a budget and commit to live by it … and get rid of the credit cards.
  • If you fear not being able to afford your child’s educational requirements, save something, anything, each pay period and begin researching scholarships and educational alternatives.
  • If you fear not having enough to retire because you’ve started late, get started now. Don’t worry about the past.
  • If you fear losing your job and not having enough for daily expenses, cut your expenses now, learn to make extra money, and develop a backup plan for your job.
  • If you fear not being able to manage your own investments, get a fee based professional to help you.

Carol Fogarty suggests this outside-the-box exercise:

  1. Lift one of your hands up to the top of your head.  Hold your hand about one foot away just in front of your head. Now swish your hand in a gentle even movement down along the front of your face, neck, chest, heart and solar plexus (tummy) area.
  2. Now swish your hand out and away from your body, as if you are pushing something away.
  3. As you swish down along the front of your body and then out and away repeat, either out allowed or in your head “cancel, clear, delete”
  4. Repeat at least three times so you can be sure you have cleared away the unwanted energies.
  5. Too easy.


And last, but not least, you can always go shopping.  🙂

I’m distraught.   I missed Blog Action day.  And all the more distressing is that the theme is something absolutely close to my heart:  Poverty.

In lieu, here are some finds on blogs whose authors are more organized than I, who wrote excellent posts on the topic.

Why women are poor in retirement.

The UK Embassy in Russia blogs about how the UK foreign office is partnering with Russia on development initiatives.

Here’s a funny one for people who torrent stuff:   Donate your savings.  Interweb Robin Hood 🙂

Moritherapy found a great video from last years day against poverty.

and a blogger expat in the Caribbean has this little project going on.

And Me?  Here’s what I’m doing.   You likely know about the vigil at Vancouver City Hall as part of Homelessness Action Week.  If I’m really brave (and I hope to be) and if I can find a warm sleeping bag (HINT HINT) for the night, I’m going to try to sleep outside overnight on Friday with the people observing the vigil.   If I can’t get it together or screw up my courage enough, then for sure I will be on the steps of city hall on Saturday at 1pm for the STAND. Local Readers – join me!

It’s time to have some fun again —  Isabella, the blogging therapist  (whose Wordless Wednesdays are a gentle highlight of my week) nominated my blog for this award:


and the deal is, I get to carry on the tradition (errr, meme?) by nominating 7 others with a note about why I think they’re brilliant blogs.  That’s easy!   Here goes:


lion.jpgMaraTriangle is an extraordinary blog out of Africa.  Written by park rangers, it contains photos and videos of park wildlife and  their struggle to prevent and arrest poachers, and encourage conservation efforts.  Lions, cheetahs, wildebeest … all there.  NOTE:  they’re looking for a donation of a digital camera, so if you have one to spare, click the “gallery” link.  Also, you can follow a ranger on twitter: @maratriangle.

2. Apartment Therapy inspires me to unplug from the grid and enjoy my home.

3. BadHuman is a warm, fun blog from a couple in the states serious about eco-lifestyle changes.

4. GusGreeper – another warm, real blog by someone with depression.  I linked to a recent post that left me grinning with a bit of a misty eye.  I’m so impressed that she tells it like it is and I hope it encourages others with depression to know they are not alone.

5.  BeyondRobson is in-your-face and controversial.   All I can say is:  Life ain’t white picket fences, and thank god someone takes the mickey out of propoganda.

6.  Hummingbird604  a  mix of environment, food, intelligentsia and social media, Raul’s blog is simply delightful, like him.

7. Give Me Back my $5 remains my fave cdn personal finance blogger.  I’ve “watched” as Krystal got out of debt *yaayy!*, left a job, got a new job, left it for something better, broke up and found a new guy … and consistently writes naturally and easily about the dynamic between her life and her money.

Those are my nominees for the Brilliant Blog award!  Thanks again, Isabella, for your nomination 🙂

Nominees, you are invited to carry on by:

  1. add the logo of the award to your blog
  2. add a link to the person who awarded it to you
  3. nominate at least 7 other blogs
  4. add links to those blogs on your blog
  5. leave a message for your nominees on their blogs

Back to basics                                 www.cuisinekids.com  

With all the things you read in the news today, shortages, price hikes etc., Does it make you think that we’re in for some tough times ahead? Probably. But is it any different than it was back in the day? I think it’s just different, we adapted, we learned and moved on but the main thing is, did we learn from it?

My answer, well kinda, sorta  but not really, to be politically correct. Sure our lives got busier, our jobs are more demanding and so on. So what made us change and go away from so many things that we held so dear?

We forgot about the past. Not historical events, sacrifices or any of that but we forgot about the basics. Things are parents used to do, that we probably have fond memories of but don’t do now, like have a garden in the backyard.

It was not that long ago that most houses had a garden patch in the back yard, organic veggies where the norm and it just made sense to grow your own because it was cheaper and tasty. Growing a garden was a sense of pride. Who could grow the biggest pumpkin, for example, was a big attraction at local fairs.

Gardening was also a family affair.  It was time well spent nurturing a bond with your kids and teaching them about gardening and nature. It doesn’t stop there. Finding creative and interesting ways to cook your food and or play with it opens up limitless opportunities. Why not explore it?

That’s where I started putting all the pieces together and began thinking. How can I save money, learn, have fun and all while spending time with the family? The big light bulb went on in my head and that’s when I realized it was time to get back to basics. I discovered it didn’t take much to do everything I wanted, all while being ECO friendly. I thought they idea unique although really just common sense, but I wanted to share it so I created www.cuisinekids.com.

There’s lots of cool ideas and tips there —  everything from growing a garden to cooking what you grew, Eco friendly yard maintenance and tips on natural pesticides. Don’t forget it’s ok to  play with your food, so we include ideas on how to do that too.  That’s more for the kids but it’s fun. 🙂

Technology and gadgets are great but without the basics, they are bound to fail unless we have the foundation to build from. Life lessons. Skills etc. We’ve become to accustomed to cheap, easy and fast.  A throw away world. There’s a lot wrong with it and that’s where I think we fell of the trail from the past. The cost to our personally lives and enviroment? Is it worth it? I don’t think so maybe it’s time to consider getting back to basics.

Just something to think about.

Author: Dirke Botsford – creator of www.cusinekids.com – Have a comment, suggestion?

email me at cuisinekids ad mac.com

Guest post by Jonathon Narvey

Go Green, Save Money

Ever since An Inconvenient Truth became synonymous with the fight against climate change (rather than a commentary on my slowing metabolism and receding hairline), green companies selling eco-friendly products have gotten some great buzz. People are investing in solar panel roofs, hybrid cars and – of course – lots and lots of shiny new bicycles.

But going green shouldn’t necessarily imply one has to go out and spend money on a bunch of new stuff, even if it has the “green” stamp of approval. Buying a new hybrid car can actually be worse for the environment (and your budget) than just buying a used non-hybrid car, if you factor in the carbon emissions used to manufacture the new vehicle.

Basically, you need to balance the costs of your green purchases with your ability to afford your good intentions, along with your expected savings over the long run.

What this means for people of any budget is thinking about the three R’s: recycle, re-use and reduce. The ultimate goal for most people making eco-friendly choices isn’t merely to be seen as environmentally-friendly (although that’s definitely a consideration), but to actually be living sustainably.

Maintaining your transportation, whether it’s a car or a bicycle is cheaper than buying something new and means a factory doesn’t have to use up more of our planet’s finite resources to produce another one. Don’t buy bottled water – it’s expensive and produces a lot of plastic for landfills. Eat a vegetarian meal when you can. It’s almost always less expensive, and meat production causes a whole host of environmental problems. Check here for more great tips.

Both financial and environmental sustainability are intertwined and require common-sense solutions.

Principal Consultant Jonathon Narvey blogs about current affairs and life in Vancouver at Currents.


photo credit: cogdogblog

Page 3 of 11«12345»10...Last »