Lots to talk about today!
The weather has been swinging back and forth so much, I barely know how to dress myself these days. I forgot what 80+ degrees felt like until today. Even after I stuff my cardigan in my purse, it still felt way too hot. I think finally spring/summer is here to stay.
I washed this Eileen Fisher jumper dress for the first time and it held up well. Even in the dryer on medium heat. There’s no fading or shrinkage. As for this cardigan, the sleeves are starting pill where they rub up against the body, BUT it doesn’t bother me. The pills are those big soft fuzzy ones, not the plastic like hard little pills that I hate. Because it’s a heathered gray color, pills don’t really stand out and kind of just add to the texturized appearance of the cardigan. I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to own a long cardigan. I really like having something that feels like a robe. It goes with so many outfits. I like it so much, I’d like to have another one, maybe in a heathered nude color. Maybe something that’s even thinner but with more drape. I’d love to find one with rolled edges throughout just like this one.
After I ran out of my Japanese Assensa sunblock, I bought a new sunblock from Elta MD. I bought the tinted one in the “clear” formulation. It’s tinted, but called “clear” because it’s for acne prone skin. I don’t get much acne, but the clear formulation contained niacinamide which is supposed to keep redness and blemishes at bay. I’m really satisfied with it so far. In the past I’ve used the Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer and then later the NARS tinted moisturizer, and I have to say I like the Elta MD version more, because it feels the least like make up of them all. It’s the sheerest of them all (which is not good if you want some coverage). I like to apply one pump of the stuff with a kabuki brush all over the face and neck. It goes on quick and easy, then I am out the door. Most days, this is all I do to prep my face for the day.
I also recently ordered a box of snacks and household items from the website Brandless. Have you heard of it? Everything is organic and eco friendly and costs $3 or less. I read some good reviews about their products and wanted to give it a try because shipping was free with a $39 order. So far so good. I enjoyed the dried mangos, although they are not as good as the ones at Whole Foods but they are half the price. The oreo-like cookies were really good too. The BBQ potato crisps were just OK. They were a little too salty for me (and I like salt!). I also ordered the maple ginger hand soap and HATE the smell. The scent really lingers for a long time on your hands too. Overall though, I’m glad I tried it and could see myself ordering again, especially if the free shipping spending limit stays low, otherwise the $9 shipping is not worth it.
This week I had another phone session with my “money coach”. Before each session with him, I think OK this will be our last phone session, but then we get into a discussion about some important topic and run out of time and need to schedule another session. I think to get any sort of comprehensive advice about finance, one has to spend like 5-6 hours with an adviser. We finalized my expected budget and with the amount of overages each month, my coach says I should save up for an emergency fund to cover my expenses for a few months, and because I’m conservative, I’d want it to be 6 months. Then when that goal is met, I should start saving for a goal, ie. to put a down payment on a house, or to pay down student loans in the off chance the government cancels the student loan forgiveness program I’m in now. We calculated how much time it would take to meet this goal, which will be about 3-5 years, depending on what happens with the loan program.
With this timeline, he recommended that I save by investing it rather than putting it in a traditional savings account which would yield very little interest. He mentioned investing through robot investment firms like Betterment or Healthfront, where a robot or computer algorithm manages your investments based on your risk tolerance, age, and goals; they are making minute by minutes changes on a continual basis for a very low fee, of like 0.25% of what’s in your account. This is much lower than if you hired a traditional human being to do the job, which would cost you like 1-2%. With a human, you are also gambling on the quality of that person, who has emotions and will make mistakes, and again, is human, so they can only invest so much time and effort into your money. I mentioned this to my senior (age 60 +) mentors at work, and they had never heard of it before. They were all used to the idea of hiring a real people to manage their money. Apparently, more and more non-rich millennials are saving money/investing this way.
Investing is an entirely new idea to me and I’m still learning what all the various terms mean, but I’m really drawn toward a hands off-low fee-robot approach. It makes investing much less scarier than I had once imagined. I’m going to discuss the pros and cons of the various companies that offer these services at my next session with my coach, who by the way, does not earn any money by selling me on financial products (this is key!). What about you? Do you have any thoughts or feelings about investing? Would you prefer a human or robot manage your money?
[outfit: Eileen Fisher jumper dress, hooded cardigan gifted by Mijeong Park, *SAS suntimer sandals, *Dagne Dover midi tote]