Moms on a Budget Series Recap

Moms on a Budget Series Recap
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We had a wonderful time during the Virtual Money Chat. Moms shared financial tips & experiences over beverages to wrap up the “Moms on a Budget” series with the Chicagoland Mom Squad for Money Smart Week.
This is a recap of the session:
Money Smart Week
The week is still in progress. Visit to check out free, virtual workshops on a variety of topics.
Chicagoland Mom Squad
Tenille Jackson is the curator of The Chicagoland Mom Squad, a great Facebook group. Topics range from p-EBT debates to politics to hilarious mom memes and much more. There are also active momsquad groups in Atlanta and the Quad Cities. To join, request an invite through Facebook.

Topics We Touched On:

1. Setting a money date:

Schedule time to review goals, finances, your dreams regularly. Be intentional. Schedule time in your calendar (make the meeting recurring) to routinely review household financial matters – whether you’re married or managing as head of household. Get into a habit of setting goals and reviewing them.
We also talked about engaging children in the financial education process.
  • IXL has financial literacy sessions for kiddos and was recommended by a mom.
  • A mom helps her child separate any funds received into giving, save, and spend categories.
  • I couldn’t remember the book last night, but I read a great book on training kids with money called, The Opposite of Spoiled, by Ron Lieber. (It’s probably in the library.)

2. Budgeting tips:

If the word, “budget”, is a trigger; call it something else: spending plan, money map, “Antigua-getaway-is-happening” 😊, etc.
Budgets are a tool. They are how you will give “every penny a purpose”. You control it. You can change it. Give yourself grace and patience if budgeting is not your superpower….yet! It takes time to build the habit of operating successfully and consistently from a budget. Start from today…you can do this!
Think about the financial goals you have as your money mission or family adventure. That budget is a tool to help you accomplish the mission. Have you identified a family adventure yet?
Remember, if you’re working with a spouse who’s not on board initially – financially speaking – do what you can do first. Give that person time to recognize the benefits of budgeting by seeing how you stay committed to the cause. Everyone has different money stories – and that’s ok. Patience is the key here!

3. Figuring out your retirement number:

Simple equation: (estimated monthly expenses * 12 ) / .05 = retirement savings goal
  • Estimated monthly expenses: How much you’ll need to live on after your W2 income. Don’t forget to include Social Security or pension (if you’ll get one). My example, I want to continue to travel and plan to have my primary mortgage paid off. So my monthly expenses minus social security would be $3000/month
  • Annual expense would be $3000 * 12 = $36000
  • Dividing by (.05 or 5% average annual return) = $720,000.
So I should have a retirement nest egg goal of $720,000 to maintain my standard of living and not outlive my cash during retirement years. has a retirement calculator that can be helpful.

4. F.I.R.E.

That stands for Financial Independence / Retire Early
The idea behind  F.I.R.E. is that you generate enough passive income to exceed your monthly expenses which makes working for someone else optional.  This is a whole movement and many people share their journies to financial independence. Some common ways to achieve FIRE are:
  • Learning to invest in stocks and bonds in addition to traditional, employer-sponsored retirement plans
  • Investing in income-producing real estate
  • Starting a business
There are many options. I just want to plant the seed in your spirit that this is something we can work towards. I’m interviewing several women for an upcoming series who will share their FIRE journies. Stay tuned!
There may have been a few other topics discussed, but these were the major topics. Stephanie Lyons and I really appreciate everyone’s input and questions. It made for a very fruitful discussion.
Stay in touch with both Stephanie and me through the following methods:
Stephanie Lyons:
Toni Husbands
Have a great rest of your week!
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