Category Archives: Month In Review

March Month In Review

A lot has been happening behind the scenes recently. I’ve been working on a few blog projects that I hope to have up in the next several weeks. Without giving it all away, I’m going to be running two informative and interesting series’ that I think everyone will enjoy.

One of my new initiatives has been the Interview Series, where I get to know some other bloggers that I think are doing a fantastic job. This month featured Monevator, Eliminate the Muda, and Little House in the Valley.

Blog Traffic

Also, I’m beginning to make updates to the blog and in a few weeks, should have a slightly new look. It will be more user friendly, and have a brand new header that I’ve been working on.

This month, readership has grown 26%, which is still beyond fantastic and will be tough to top in April. More importantly, the number of comments have increased dramatically lately, and I can’t be grateful enough to those who have build this community. It really makes everything better, and a 45% increase in the number of comments this month is something I’m very proud of and you should be too!

Yakezie Challenge

This past month, I sprinted up the Yakezie ladder and went from 142,090 all the way down to 79,724, which puts me in the top 50 on Wisebread’s top 100+ list of Personal Finance Blogs. I don’t know how much longer I can keep this going, but I’m very happy with my placement where it is. Now I just have to fight off the other Yakezie members!


I had a few posts that I really liked this month. I had a nice mix of guest posts this month as well of some signature posts that I put a little extra effort into. Here are a few favorites from March:

Are Employers Making Crazy Assumptions?

Funniest Tax Return Ever

Squeezing More Out of Your Retirement Account (guest post by Engineer Your Finances)

The 5 Worst Ways to Save Money

Guest Posts

I exchanged posts with Neal of Wealth Pilgrim this month. I guest posted over by him with How to Teach Kids About Money and he graciously returned the favor with his fantastic post How to Stop Sweating the Small (and Big) Stuff

Happy April!

February Month in Review

My goal until April 15th is to fully fund my 2009 Roth IRA. I’ve stopped contributing to my employer plan and will be socking away as much as possible until I hit the $5,000 mark. It was going to be close because I happen to get paid of the 15th of April this year and didn’t want to leave it until the last minute, but the $800 in tax refunds I’ll be getting should put me over the top and help me reach the Roth IRA limit.

Blog Traffic

Another month of unsustainable growth has gone by an increase in traffic of 111% and the statistics continue to surprise me. I’m sure some of the progress is due to the Alexa Challenge, and as that page makes its rounds on other blogs, I hope many of the readers stay.

Samurai Alexa Ranking Challenge

It’s been awesome getting to know everyone and being part of an awesome community, and the results have been fantastic. Everyone is moving up, and in the past month, my rank rose from 441,611 to 142,090! How great is that?? I’m definitely starting to slow down, but I’ve reached the front page of the Wisebread rankings and now I’ll start to enjoy many of the other benefits of being a member of the Yakezie.


Personal Finance 101

Pay Down Variable HELOC or Fixed Mortgage?

What the Credit Card Act Means for You

The True Cost of Coffee

The Best Deal I Ever Got

Guest Posts

FiscalGeek Why I Don’t Use Zero Based Budgeting

January Month in Review

I have been giving updates on my budgeting each month, but as my spending becomes more regular and I have less fluctuation to report, it becomes less interesting, so I am going to change the focus to my net worth, which is a long term goal as I reach for decreasing my debt, increasing my savings, and reaching 0.

January was a great month for both my net worth and for the blog. Let’s start with my financial progress. My bank accounts got a nice boost because I received the second half of my signing bonus at work and completed my orientation period. That comes with a small salary increase which I’ll see in future paychecks. It’s always nice to get a raise and receive recognition for doing a good job.

Net Worth

I was able to increase my net worth by $1,510, up to -$15,975. This includes fully funding my emergency fund, starting my IRA, and paying down student loans. This brings my student loan debt down to $22,587, with the average interest rate being a low 2.79%. Since I’m paying just the minimums due to the low interest rates, this won’t be decreasing quickly, but my other accounts will definitely show sizeable increases moving forward.

Blog Traffic

In terms of the blog, traffic increased 158% over December numbers. The great increase in visitors was likely due to several guest posts, which explains the increase in subscribers as well as return visitors. While these increases are beyond what I would ever have expected, I don’t think the trend will continue. However, I would like to continue growing at a 20% rate, which is definitely possible if I continue to guest post and get my name out there.

Samurai Alexa Ranking Challenge

Personally, I have been doing very well in the Samurai Alexa Ranking Challenge. When we started 12 days ago, I was at 682,918, which was my average ranking over the previous 3 months. Obviously, as I grow, my ranking increases, so even then, my 1 month ranking was just 371,965. Currently, my 1 month rank is 213,551, and my 3-month rank is 441,611. As long as I keep my 1-month number below my 3-month rank, I will continue to build toward my goal of breaching the 200,000 mark.


Here are my favorite articles from January, as well as my list of guest posts that went up, in order of referral traffic generated from each post.

Mailbag: 5 Steps to Get Out of Debt

How to Avoid Paying $900/Month For Your iPhone

How to Use a Windfall

Impressing Your Friends Can Cost You

Maybe Phone Insurance Would Have Been Worth It (Lauren’s Guest Post)

Guest Posts

Money Relationship – Why I Don’t Stress About My $23,000 Pile of Debt (Jan 14)

Budgets Are Sexy – Who Cares If You Saved Money By Spending Money? (Jan 14)

PT Money – Simple Negotiation Boosts Your Mood and Your Wallet (Jan 13)

You Have More Than You Think – The Pinnacle of Frugality (Jan 13)

PT Money – How I Saved $27.95 on My Taxes (Jan 29)