Welcome! I’m Hannah and I believe that everyone can enjoy fine living on a shoestring budget. I created this personal blog in 2010 to chronicle me and my husbands journey in frugal living while paying off educational debt.
I’m a blogger, social media influencer, lover of Southwest Florida, travel writer with Traveling Mom, and owner and creator of Beautiful Budget Life and Beautiful Budget SWFL. I’m also a deals contributor for HelloSWFL.
I’m a wife to a wonderful husband, and mom to two sweet little boys (with one more on the way). Almost everything we do includes some aspect of being frugal. How did we get this way? It all started as a love story…
… when Tom and I married in 2009 while he was in law school at Stetson Law in Gulfport, FL. We were always frugal, but it wasn’t until he graduated in 2010 that we realized how crippling his student debt could be.
Tom started out with so much debt that if we paid it off using the standard rate, we’d spend over half a million dollars with interest. We have chosen to pay off our student loans at a faster rate than the 10 year plan. We started out with a combined total over $180,000. As a once die hard couponer, I couldn’t allow this to happen, and we successfully cut our largest loan in half in only 7 months! After three years of paying our loans we reduced them by over half. At this rate we will have Tom’s loans paid by the end of 2016. As of October 2016 we only have about $3,000 left to pay!
Things changed when we had our son, Robert, in May of 2013. We moved to the Naples, FL area for Tom’s job, and I quit my job as a biology teacher to be a full time mom. In order to make ends meet we had to defer our loans for a while. We are so bad at not paying them that we ended up paying anyway while they were deferred! We are off deferment and I am working hard everyday to come up with creative ways to save money so we can save for the boys’ college as well as our retirement. We saved money by living beneath our means in a small condo, couponing, and buying very little.
In April of 2015 we had our second son, Jackson. Now we are saving for two kids to go to college!
While I love saving money, I also have expensive taste. I firmly believe that you can live frugally while enjoying the finer things in life such as travel. I like fine foods and quality ingredients, I also enjoy wasting my money on Starbucks. It’s all about the experience! Join me as I try to balance living the high life with paying off our loans. I do this by cooking, crafting and finding new ways to be frugal, even on vacation.
Please keep in touch and comment with your ways to save money. I’m always open to new ideas.
Email me if you have an idea for a blog post:
- eatdrinkandsavemoney AT gmail.com
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Some of the links on my posts are affiliate or sponsored links, learn more about that here. Everything I write about is my honest opinion.