About Hannah Rinaldi

Hi there, new friend! I’m Hannah and I used to be a run of the mill frugal living blogger who would take any sponsored post because I needed the money. These days I’m more of a cheap, environmentalist, minimalist, slow food loving, conscious consumer, slow living, mom blogger, but hey, do we really need labels when it comes to content creating on the internet?

Even though I’ve changed a lot since this blog was conceived, I still feel tied to the original roots of fine living on a shoestring budget. I believe that everyone can create a meaningful and joyful life on a budget.  I created this personal blog in 2010 to chronicle me and my husbands journey in frugal living while paying off educational debt while still enjoying “the good life”. By 2016 we’d paid off over $150,000 in debt.   Even though I still blog about some aspects of frugal living, this blog has changed courses many different times!

My early blog career

This blog has taken many twists and turns. It started in 2010 as a traditional diary style blog. Over the years it has taken me on an adventure to become a professional blogger that actually makes an income from blogging, as well as a social media influencer, travel writer with Traveling Mom, and food contributor to The Daily Meal.

Somewhere along the way I lost my authenticity and started blogging solely to make money. I sold out. What can I say? I write about money and understand the importance of making money, not just saving money.

As much as I loved the creative challenge of partnering with brands to create sponsored content, I felt like my soul was dying. As a conscious consumer and big environmentalist, I felt like a fraud trying to convince my readers to buy things they probably didn’t need, especially when I knew they could make most things themselves or simply live without! I’m a minimalist. A lover of slow food. And a mom who enjoys the simple things. I lost a lot of my authenticity trying to blog for profit.

I wrote an e-book called The Authentic Blog Project chronicling my journey to become a more authentic blogger. Turns out, bloggers can make money without selling out!

What I stand for these days-  my counter cultural ideas on consumerism and our environment

These days I blog less about products, recipes, and travel, and more about minimalism, conscious consumerism, and how to live a simple and meaningful life.  I still take on the occasional sponsored blog post with brands that I love. You can still find my old blog posts here. In fact, those old posts are my bread and butter! I still get most of my page views (meaning money) from some of those old posts. The posts deserve a place on this blog because each one holds a piece of my history.

I’m a long time environmentalist and I believe that there is a connection between ecology and economics. Eco means home. We have a responsibility to take care of our Earthly home and our home finances.

The ways we spend our money directly affects the health of our Earth. Making conscious decisions to buy less and waste less food can not only save you money, but help you save our planet as well.

Our grandparents generation and those before them were proud to be considered frugal. It was a value that was important to them. For some reason we have strayed away from frugality as a society. Consumerism is rampant, and media pressures us to buy things we don’t want or need. I see the connection between our increased obsession with consumerism and our decreased passion to keep our Earth healthy.

I’m passionate about food waste, soil health, and conscious consumerism. I created and then sold a compost company here in Naples, FL called Naples Compost. Learn more about it here.  While I no longer own and operate the business, I do still support it and compost my food waste with Naples Compost weekly.

Family is everything to me

I’m a wife to a wonderful husband, and mom to three little boys.  Almost everything we do includes some aspect of being frugal.  How did we get this way?  It all started as a love story…

wedding day

… 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.

IMG_5851

We paid off our debt quickly

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 paying interest.  We chose 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.

Rinaldi Family-0009

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 were so bad at not paying them that we ended up paying anyway while they were deferred!  We saved money by living beneath our means in a small condo, couponing, and buying very little. While doing this we still manage to save for all three boys’ college educations, save for retirement, and tuck money away into savings.

In April of 2015 we had our second son, Jackson. And in September of 2017 we welcome Max to the family. Three kids aren’t cheap!

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 spending money on fancy local coffee and kombucha.  It’s all about the experience!  Join me as I balance a budget while enjoying the finer things in life and searching for a meaningful life.

Please keep in touch

I’m always open to new ideas.

Email me if you have an idea for a blog post:

  • eatdrinkandsavemoney AT gmail.com

Are you a member of the media?  I’m always open to sponsorship opportunities and freelance!  Please email me for my current media kit.

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.