Happy Healthy and Well Balanced Life

The Loop'd'loops Life

The Loop'd'loops Life

Happy Healthy and Well Balanced Life

Recent Posts

2019

2019

Good evening fine folks! This year is bringing a whole new realm of growth, challenges, and excitement. We are just about 1 week into the new year. What have you done to make this year different than the rest? I am sitting here on the […]

Challenged by My Dad

Challenged by My Dad

My dad has always been a huge supporter of who I want to be. He is super encouraging when it comes to my motivation too. Last week he asked if I would be up for losing 25 pounds by Christmas. This is a huge challenge […]

How To Create a Personal Budget

How To Create a Personal Budget

This is one of my favorites! Seriously! I love to make budgets! What is not fun about trying to solve a problem like this!

Although I love making them, sticking to them is even harder! Here is my step by step Guide to creating a budget. Let’s start with the prep work. Take the bank statement you printed last week and look at the inflow and outflow. When I did this the first time I was shocked at how many little purchases I made at Starbucks, fast food places, and Target! Whether you are an Excel type person or a pen and paper type of person, I urge you to write each step of budget-making down on a piece of paper. We will be doing this monthly.  Now take your sheet of paper or worksheet in Excel. Across the top we are going to write 3 columns: CATEGORY, BUDGETED, ACTUAL. You will keep this out to see regularly so that you know where you are at on keeping the budget throughout the month.

Before anything- Think about how dedicated and motivated you are to do this. How much do you want life to change? Depending on how strict a budget you make or how much you decide you want to keep paying for- you will be able to achieve great financial success!

Now that we have the prep done let’s write out our budget.

1. Calculate Your Monthly Income

Do you get a single paycheck a month? Do you get paid with individual purchase payments? It all depends on how you get paid every month. Calculate it and write it down. For me, I get 2 paychecks.

EXAMPLE

Paycheck 1: $1100
Paycheck 2: $1100
Random:     $    50

Your page should now look like this:

 

Good Job! The best section we will write down! Now let’s get to a bit tougher step.

2. Highlight bank statement

Take a Highlighter- I would suggest having 2 colors to make this step and #4 easier.

Highlight every line of withdrawal with a Necessary (Orange) or flexible (Yellow) or not necessary (Pink)- These are just sample colors; use what you want.

EXAMPLE

McDonald’s
Car Insurance 
Coach 
Goodwill
Grocery Store
Costco
Shell Gasoline

We know that certain categories of expenses are Necessary such as Loan Payments, Insurance Payments, Utilities, Etc. And then there are more flexible expenses yet still important, such as gas, food and such. Finally, we have the category that is not necessary but part of the life you enjoy living. Some of the expenses in the last category may have to be cut so that you can reach your financial goals (see below). 

3. Add up all the Necessary (Fixed) expenses

This will include the following categories (you may or may not have all of these categories)

Mortgage/Rent (This would include your escrow payments: Property Taxes, homeowners insurance, and mortgage loan Payment)
Homeowners Association Fee (if you live within an HOA)
Debt Payments
Insurance (car, home, life, health, etc)
Tithing (for those of you who are not Christians-Charitable Giving)

Write each expense in the next category “Expenses”

4. Add up all Flexible Expenses

This category is a little bit different. Although you NEED to buy food, you NEED to pay for transportation to work, you NEED to pay for certain expenses- there are ways to have the amount of the payment bump down quite a bit!

For me, I had to take these options and really look at how to cut the prices down.

FOR EXAMPLE:

My grocery budget used to be unmonitored. I would go to the store- buy what I want for dinner and waste a bunch of food by the end of the week. I would buy veggies in bulk and half of them would go bad and I would end up throwing them away. I had to take the time to meal plan and prep on Sundays to save me over $200 a month on groceries. I budget myself for about $150/ mo in groceries. Keep in mind I am an unmarried woman who cooks for myself and boyfriend so we don’t have to buy much.

How are you able to cut your flexible expenses? Phone Companies, internet companies, and even utility companies have discounted rates that they offer for people who call in and ask. There is no harm in asking! I would love to hear how you save!

5. Add up all Unnecessary Expenses

This one is difficult for me to do. I like how I live and I hate to cut my luxuries in life. There has been quite a bit that I have taken out of my life- this includes Ice Cream, random Sunday afternoon drives, and beers on Friday night. I have also cut out MOST of our eating out budget but I do leave a little bit for date night.

Take some time and decide what you feel is most important to you in regards to eliminating from your life.

3. Set Financial Goals

Are you longing to buy your dream car? Do you want to travel the world? Do you want to quit your day job and make a living with your passion? Yes. You can make this happen. I challenge you to sit down and figure out what you personally need to be able to make that dream come true. For me- I want to retire when I’m 55 and live comfortably the rest of my life. For me, that will cost around $4,000,000. Is it possible to save $4,000,000 in 28 years? I am not sure- but how cool would it be if I could!?

What do you want to accomplish financially?

4. Create an Emergency Fund Account

Part of creating a budget is making sure you are taken care of in case something unfortunate were to happen. I suggest having $1500 in a savings account. This may start with just having pennies in a jar- but either way- work on getting your emergency fund stocked up!

6. Adjust When Needed

Last but not least- Next month, we will go through this again. We will repeat budget creation until we have a pretty good feel for how our lives work through the budget.


I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on “How to Create A Personal Budget.”  Feedback from you will help make future posts better! Please comment below or contact me via any method and I’d love to hear your feedback! 

 

How to Start a Money Making Blog from Scratch

How to Start a Money Making Blog from Scratch

Good Morning!! I have been blogging for years- actually too many to remember. I started with Weebly, moved to Blogspot and ended with WordPress. I wanted to do more with my blog; wanted to make something of it; to impact people. The mindset change that […]

God Still Makes It!

God Still Makes It!

Good afternoon! I was just working away, typically I have a sermon running in the background as I work on booking flights and data entry.  Something caused me to stop, listen, and give my full attention to the sermon. This sermon was from a series at […]

Letter to 245 lb Me

Letter to 245 lb Me

Dear Ellie,
I know you hate the way you look. Please stop. You know those people who have said things in the past. They are no longer in your life. Those who are can see your beauty. The people who are in your life now are here to support you and love you.

You wake up every morning knowing the clothes you love are not the clothes you will be wearing. You look at the boxes of clothes that are too small and try to squeeze into them- only making you feel worse. You then cover up with a hoodie or jacket. You look at your reflection and see the failed attempts and living a healthier life. Well- I’m giving you another chance. Fresh start. Erasing all of the memories of past attempts. I know you hit your highest weight and that scared you. I know that you feel like the heavier you get the less love you will have.

I want you to know that you are loved. That love will not change if you lose weight or if you gain weight. You need to do this for YOU. The people who love you are here to encourage and support you. They are not judging you if you slip up. I know sometimes that ice cream is too hard to pass up. If you ask for the help- you will get it.

You have this. I know deep down you don’t believe that you can make this work but you will. You have this amazing skill at getting right back on the horse when you get flung off. Please never lose that. I know you have been trying for the majority of your life to be the woman that you know you can be. It is time to find her.

You’ve got this. You will be the woman that you know is hiding in there. This will not just be a transformation of physical appearance but you will learn to love yourself. This weight loss journey is not for those around you. THIS IS FOR YOU!

I believe in you.  You have done amazing things this last 2 years. So many challenges were thrown your way. It is time to come out of hiding and show this world what an amazing person you are! Stop hiding in the background. You are worth the time and affection of everyone in your life.

There will come a point you will get married and have kids. When this time comes, you will NEED to be healthier. You will need to be able to have the strong self-control to say no to more things when you are raising children. This will be a good test run. If you can’t take care of yourself how will you take care of your family? You’ve got this. It will not be an easy road. If you stick to it though, your life will continue to amaze you!

Let people know. You need the support, especially as you are trying to learn how to grow stronger in your self-control.

Love you, Darling.

Me


I wrote this letter to me this week. I am so disappointed that my weight isn’t coming off like I so badly want. I am taking smaller steps to try and make this road a little less bumpy but here we go.  from this point forward I will be doing the following. I want to be at my goal weight by my birthday (2019). That means I have 105 lbs to lose in 1 year. Can I do it? I am determined and ready to make it happen! Join me on this weight loss journey to the next chapter of our lives! Healthy, happy, and energized chapter of our lives is just beginning!

Are you interested in joining me on this journey to weight loss and transformation? Let’s be accountable to each other! Send me an email or comment below and I would love to send you encouragement (from me, not automated emails like so many blogs send).


I will be updating more frequently on this progress through Instagram. If you are interested please follow the hashtag #helloglutesgoodbyegluten

When You Decide “OK, Something Has To Change”

When You Decide “OK, Something Has To Change”

I am going to be 100% transparent (not that I usually am not- just intentionally sharing it all this post). I get nervous about if my debit card will be approved almost every time I go get gas- Which is twice a week. Seriously- at […]

365 Day Challenge Check-in

365 Day Challenge Check-in

Good Mornin’! If you haven’t already, check out my Instagram. This is where I have been posting about the 365-day challenge. We are onto day 40 today. If you had missed the posts there, don’t fret! I will catch you up momentarily. This week I […]

10 Ways to Keep Going When Blogging Is Lagging

10 Ways to Keep Going When Blogging Is Lagging

Do you ever sit there staring at the computer screen wondering what the heck you’re going to write about? I have felt this way all week. I log in and find my self easily distracted by anything other than writing. I don’t want to call it writer’s block but I do think it’s pretty dang close.

There are a handful of things I do to re-motivate my self to start writing again. When I feel stuck in a rut with my writing I run through this list first to try and get the momentum going again.

Read Other Blogs

When you are a blogger- one of the most important aspects to thrive in your community. The blogs you choose to read and stay on top of will help influence, support, and sympathize with. When you are struggling to be a blogger who posts consistently- sometimes there are days when you have no idea what to write about or who would want to hear what you have to say. Spend some time reading and talking on other bloggers to remotivate yourself. Sometimes, it even helps to encourage others to keep going!

Keep A Jar (or notebook) Of Blog Posts

I am constantly thinking of blog posts. When I am in the shower, on a run, or in the middle of a church service. I keep a notebook of post ideas that I jot down a quick idea or blog title so that when Ig look back I can have a list of ideas. It can be difficult to think of a specific blog post on the spot. Brainstorming ideas for further down the road is incredibly helpful for the days which feel like my creativity is dragging.

Write More ThanOne Post At A Time

There are days when the words w; when my fingers want to keep typing. There is one solution to this problem… WRITE! When I feel like I could write all day, I do. I get as many blog posts written as possible- in the roughest draft that I can. This allows me to get all of my thoughts out and sets me up for less work to do down the next day.

Update An Old Post

Take a look at the posts you made when you first started out. Do they follow your Niche or theme still? If not, its time to update or delete! This is a great way to keep your blog up to date and relevant. Keeping your blog within your Niche will help your followers know you are consistent and reliable. You will also have an easier time in reaching your target audience. So take some time, when you feel like you can’t get a post written, to review old posts.

Share A Memory

For me, there are days in which my creativity comes to a screeching halt. When this happens, it is really easy to forget why I am writing anything at all for you. I then realize the best way to make an impact is being real with who I am and sharing my story. For those of you who don’t know, I have had a very up and down story. Self-sabotaging to a mindset of being the best me I can. if you are feeling like you cannot write from creativity, write your memories. Share your story in ways that will impact your reader. There is so much to you. Share it with the world!

Review

Have you used anything you LOVE lately? Does it fit with you Niche at all? REVIEW IT! it will be a great way not only to share your findings with your readers but also bump up your views. This can help with drawing new people to your page as well as

Little Ramblings

I specifically have a category titled “Little Ramblings”. This category is for the stuff that doesn’t really fall into any other category. I sometimes have some pretty random posts. This is a great way for me to get my creative vibes flowing again. Write a post about anything. Seriously just get something started. Finish it. Post it.  Every few months, review what posts you have written and delete or edit if you feel like you need to remove from your blog to maintain theme consistency.

DIY

Are you a blogger of food, fashion, or something else? What do you make or do yourself within your niche? Teach your followers how to do it too! I hope to have some tutorials posted in the near future. This is a great way to draw in additional readers! ALSO, this is perfect to pin on Pinterest!

Pinterest/Etsy finds

Do you find yourself mindlessly shopping or scrolling through Pinterest and Etsy? Maybe I am the only one? Probably not but maybe. I love sharing my finds with you all. This is products or blogs that I find inspirational. Spend some time trying to find a new blog to read or share something you found online that someone would love to add to their lives!

Guest Writer

Last but definitely not least. When you are completely lost for what to write- find a friend blogger or a local friend who would write a blog post for you. Featuring another writer on your blog shows how well you “play with others.” Being in the blogging world for years, I have realized that this is SO important. Ask them to write a post about a specific theme or something they excel at. They will have knowledge that you have yet to learn!

 

I know that there are times when being a blogger is tough. It is not an easy thing to do. Those who have 6+ digit incomes from their blogs work their booties off to succeed. When you take a look at what is holding you back- don’t let it be a loss of words. There are so many ways to get yourself out of writer’s block. Try these 10 options!


What do you do to remotivate yourself to write? How do you defeat writer’s block? I would love to hear your tricks and tips! 

Until next time! Peace!

Ellie

Because: puppies

Because: puppies

  I know this has nothing to do with The Loop’d’loops Life but my goodness- I think these two are needed for our health. They bring so much joy to me! <3