Rich and Regular Podcast

I didn’t know that ^ super interesting!

Also very interesting. Thanks for explaining the ways in which this “recession” may or may not be exactly that. I haven’t done any reading on it at all so I’m coming to it cold with the exception of hearing everyone talking about how we’re in a recession right now. It sounds like their approach is mine: do what I can with my money like I’m doing now, and don’t freak out.

I saw this a lot because I graduated college in 2008. Practically everyone I knew who had money or was not averse to taking on debt decided to go to grad school to avoid what was going on. There was a sense of “why should I, with a college degree, have to work a shitty job like a plebe instead of either immediately working in a white collar setting or going back to school.” Very few of them ended up making more money due to those additional degrees. And a lot of them ended up going back to grad school again years later for something different. And those second degrees, in many cases I know, also did not prove as fruitful as expected. I know one couple who know each has 2 and 3 master’s degrees resepctively and they’re still both unhappy in their chosen fields.

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IDK if others might be interested but I’m posting about the college admissions scandal and curious what others think since it plays so heavily into class dynamics. I know the thread is true crime but there is no gore in this post!

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I work in the housing/construction industry so most of my own research has been limited to trying to understand housing/construction demand. We are currently in the process of making our 5 year plans for future demand and I have been reading about different trends, etc. There are SO MANY opinions out there and I am honestly just making my best guess like everyone else. I try to limit the amount of news content I consume because it just stresses me out.

Your approach is perfect! What I plan on doing too.

I hope that my rambling was helpful, I am sure there are more knowledgeable and better spoken people on this topic because I only have a basic understanding of macro economics.

Also correction - this should be two straight QUARTERS of GDP Decline, not months!! Sorry for the typo.

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I think you’re plenty knowledgable! My understanding of economics is that if you can buy all the properties on the corner, especially the corner before players pass Go, you have a pretty good chance of winning.

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Oooh crime with no gore, just how i like it

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Here in Australia, we have some big skills shortages, labour action occuring in sectors like childcare, inflation, and the interest rates are being raised… Its all making me slightly hopeful we will at least think about some new macroeconomic indicators and stop throwing money at the construction industry because they arent the ones who needed it

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Jumped ahead in my listening to the most recent episode, 75: Financially Preparing for a Child. They share a recent Brookings study that estimates the average cost of raising a child in the US, from birth to 17, is a total of $310,605. That’s up from $284,594 in 2017 (pre-pandemic and inflation). WHEW.

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Investopedia breaks down the total cost a bit more. Childcare costs really vary wildly. I am not looking forward to that, I’m sure Chicago is on the high end :weary:

image

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In my personal experience, babies are cheap in terms of stuff and EXTREMELY expensive due to care needs, whether one parent has to give up income to stay home or you have to pay for outside care. Then there are the glory days of parenting, school-aged and easy to please. After-care is not cheap but compared to full-day daycare, it seems cheap. Free public school for six hours a day? AMAZING! Then they get bigger and cheaper in terms of care but more expensive in terms of keeping them happy. They no longer want a McDonald’s Happy Meal toy, they want electronics. Next, a car? And then there is university to pay for, and you’re back to EXTREMELY EXPENSIVE land of children. Full pendulum. Overall, none of it is cheap. But I don’t know what I’d rather do with my money, honestly. :woman_shrugging:

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I also find whole numbers like that don’t tell me anything. There’s a hundred million decisions (most of which your children wil, or will try to, make for you) and the average give no information on the statistical deviation (ok, average is $300k but 1std dev is $20k or $200k? Whats the median? The mode? Variation from living in different places?) or the huge variety of ways you could end up spending the same amount of money on your child as the next person.

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I thought the investopedia article did a great job breaking out each category and how things can vary depending on geography, economic status, etc. The whole number, to me, serves as a place to begin a conversation!

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Episode 39: Eat Better on a Budget

I was obviously excited to get to this one! We spend so much of our time and money on food—planning, buying, preparing, cleaning, etc. I consider myself a foodie, and DH and I have calibrated our spending on other things so that we can afford to go to a local co-op and farmers markets. We prioritize buying high quality meat and in-season, local produce rather than only shopping sales. DH does a lot of from-scratch cooking that saves us money, but we are often trying new recipes and techniques which leads to a fuller pantry, more time spent in the kitchen prepping and on clean up, and a wider variety of ingredients that probably cost us more than they save in the long run. I remember I really started to feel wealthy when I no longer memorized the lowest price of a gallon of milk. (I also don’t drink that much dairy anymore haha.)

Some disappointments—the episode feels kind of like an advertisement for their Eat Better on a Budget ebook. Surprising as these two aren’t often trying to sell you on something! I found some of their advice conflicting. Don’t get a high-end blender, but do get a sous vide? I’m very, very happy with our Vitamix. I can’t say if I would have bought one on my own, but it was basically the only thing on our wedding registry :joy: It really comes down to what appliances you’re reaching for often. For us, we make our own sauces and salad dressings and smoothies so often that a good blender has been golden. Ditto a sturdy, reliable, large food processor. But we’ve made do with a hand-me-down stand mixer thus far.

I totally agreed with Julien’s advice about not getting a huge pots and pans set—you really only need a few sizes of things and then a few duplicates of those sizes. You don’t need 80 sizes of pots and pans. I also think he’s right that some FREE ways to save money on food include having a tidy kitchen (including freezer!) and grocery shopping intentionally with an organized, meal-oriented list. Glad they touched on thinking about minimizing food waste from a cost perspective, too.

An interesting episode! Right now DH and I use a very simple app for our grocery list, which is essentially a shared note. There isn’t a way to organize it into store zones, like produce or bakery etc. I do wonder if that would lead to some savings—we’d spend less time in the store, less time going past enticing things that aren’t on our list. They have a template in the show notes on their website:

But I really love our app! Maybe time to find a different one?

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My grocery store has an app where you can add things to your list from the weekly ad and they will show up in their store location on the list. Things you’ve clipped a coupon for will pop up on the list as well. And then it asks you if you want to keep or not things from the expired sale.

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I wonder how listening to their “Curbing food insecurity” episode right after this one would hit for you. It was just released on Monday.

Super interesting on this topic- my coworker got a minor in food supply chain and said that across incomes people typically spend 10% of their income on food (from $40k/year or 4K on food to $400k/year or 40k on food, I’m sure this gets out of whack is someone making $4m/year spending 400k on food??)

Their curbing food insecurity episode was mainly focused on discussing the issue of food insecurity and how to reduce your own food waste as a way to improve your food budget. Julien seems very passionate about food insecurity and food waste and I connect with him deeply on this. I loved hearing his passion even if it wasn’t very actionable for personal savings ideas.

For my grocery planning it looks like this:

What food is about to go bad or needs to be used?
What do we want to make?
What do we need in addition to what we have?
What staples are we out of?

Then we add to a shared note that is broken up into lists by store section and store type (Costco vs other).

I am not the best at grocery shopping, we spend quite a bit of money on impulse purchases and don’t always stick to the list. I’ve had a lot of food anxiety post covid so tend to stock up on things we don’t need. On the other hand we seldom throw away food so I know we are using everything we buy which is one consolation prize.

We have made some “clean out the fridge” meals that Mr. ninja said “well it’s not culinary perfection, but it will make a poop” :rofl:

This is such a hard topic to address broadly because every family’s circumstance for reducing food costs will differ based on abilities, preferences, and current habits. If you have the confidence and ability to cook, using base ingredients and cooking from scratch will be faster, tastier, and more enjoyable. For those with very specific preferences or dietary needs the ideas for reducing costs will be more limited. I would love to do “money diaries” or “case studies” for people in their cooking lives to improve the quality and cost of their food, but I’m just a huge nerd who loves food, cooking, and money, lol.

Fun unrelated personal story: I’ve had a few weekends with very limited cooking time. I made an MS project Gantt chart with each cooking tool as a “resource” to optimize the cooking effort and time. The resources were oven, instant pot, stove top, chopping/ingredient prep, microwave, and assembly. I made 4-5 recipes and started with what would take the longest. It was perfection.

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Tell me more about this!!

Big same.

I’m not really trying to reduce our food costs at the moment—so happy to direct that energy elsewhere/help others!

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But why? If you like it and it works for you, I don’t think there is any real reason to switch it up…

Mostly because I wonder if one with store section dividers would be better. But it would take a lot to convince me. It’s the simplest one I’ve tried so far and it gets the job done!

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