My other blog: www.cakes-and-ale.com
More about Amanda:
I live in Chicago (in the Bucktown neighborhood, downtown) with my husband Josh. I work for a major beer supplier/marketer working in Sales and Category Management for National Accounts. In 2004, I graduated with a B.A. in English Literature from Miami University of Ohio and I will graduate in June 2010 with an MBA from DePaul University.
While I was born in Chicago, my family moved to Australia when I was 14. We lived there until I was a senior in High School. Living abroad opened up my eyes to the rest of the world and sparked a love of travel. I hope to live—and work—overseas again someday.
Why did you start blogging?
I started blogging mostly because I love to write. I became interested in personal finance after graduating college and started my first blog “Young and Broke” at that time. I felt like not many people addressed the financial issues of your average twenty-something, and I also felt like my peers were woefully uneducated (and somewhat uninterested) when it came to managing their money. I wanted to make the subject of personal finance both relevant and fun to my peer group.
What do you think is the most important personal finance issue for our generation?
Two things, and I can’t decide which is more important: 1) Staying away from credit card debt and 2) Saving for retirement. Most people in their 20s are living in the moment, wanting everything now, and worrying about the future later. Ultimately, I think both those issues go hand-in-hand. Don’t buy what you can’t afford to pay for and start thinking about the long term. Compound interest is a marvelous thing—starting to save for retirement now can mean hundreds of thousands or millions down the line. At the same time, it won’t matter much if you’re buried in consumer debt—paying off your balance each month should be top priority.
What is one thing you know now that you wish they taught in high school or college?
Again, how compound interest works. When people really see what it can mean for them, in terms of cold, hard cash, their eyes light up and it’s like they have a little personal enlightenment.
What do you do in your free time?
In my spare time, I love to read novels, watch movies, walk everywhere in the city, cook good food, drink good wine, travel the world and spend time with my family and friends.
What are your personal financial goals?
My husband and I have been saving like crazy for the last few years, getting ready to buy a house. We’re on the verge of it now, and hope to be in our new home by Spring 2010. We’re also looking to take a trip to Italy later in the year, to celebrate my graduation from business school! Long term, I’d like to have the security of knowing I’ve got enough going toward retirement as well as a cushion that would allow me to start my own business (whatever that may be) in earnest sometime in the next 10 years.
If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and why?
Josh and I are set on taking a trip all around Italy this fall, so we’re starting to plan out what we want to see and visit (and eat!). Other places on my must-see list are Africa (would love to take a safari in Kenya), Argentina, Japan, Spain, Turkey… I could go on and on!
Who do you admire the most and why?
I really admire people closest to me the most. I admire my husband for being someone who really appreciates the good (and not material) things in life above everything else. My Mom, for being tireless, ambitious, and proving that women CAN have it all (children and a thriving, demanding career). My Dad, for his innate intelligence, thoughtfulness, and dedication to whatever he endeavors. My sister, for her curiosity, sense of service, and fun-loving nature.