How Millennials Can Embrace their Inner Grasshopper, Be the Ant, and Retire Early

A well-known fable tells the story of a hard-working Ant, and the flighty Grasshopper. While the Ant saves her food throughout the Summer, the Grasshopper sings the summer away. The Ant cautions the Grasshopper to stop singing, and start working. The Grasshopper does not listen. Come Winter, the Ant is warm and fed in her house, while the Grasshopper starves. It is, of course, a morality tale cautioning young people against wasting their youth in frivolous pursuits when they should be saving for the Winter of old-age. But I reject the notion…

The Frugalist’s Omerta: Who Should You Tell That You’re On A Path to Financial Independence

As I set of on a path towards Early Retirement, I am caught between wanting my friends and family to understand my sudden obsession with frugality, and maintaining my financial privacy. The Code Of Silence Omerta comes to mind. It is – at least according to all those Mafia books I read as a kid – the code of silence; the honor among thieves. No thieves here, but as a traveler on the path to Financial Independence and (hopefully) Early Retirement, I’ve wondered how much, and to whom I can confess my…

Does Frugal Living Mean Frugal Giving?

Having Baby Grasshopper has made me feel more plugged into the World. For better or worse, I was a tourist of sorts as a single gal, but mommy-me feels invested in this Earth and my community. I assume this is some sort of biological urge, but it doesn’t seem like a particularly bad one. So, I don’t fight it. As I find myself sniffling and reaching for tissues as a particular injustice catches my attention, I also find myself reaching for my checkbook. I want to help in more concrete ways than…

I am The Grasshopper

Alright World, don’t squish this bug. I am a recent convert to the cult of early Financial Independence. Bombarded by gurus like Mr. Money Mustache, and my husband (Ha!), I am a little overwhelmed by the journey ahead of me. A little background: We are white-collar, high earners with just under a decade of our careers behind us. We have earned well, and we have lived accordingly. Until recently, I dutifully contributed to my 401k  (and when it was possible, a Roth IRA), but did so in a directionless manner.  I assumed…