Piggies, Composting, and a Benjamin Franklin Update!

First, let’s get to the important part….

Look what I came across on my morning walk yesterday!!!

pet pigA PIG! On a  leash! As in someone’s PET! Hahahahha… The best find yet on my walks, even beating out that $20 bill from three weeks ago (woop!). And apparently this guy here knows how to open the refrigerator and pee in a litter box as well. In fact, according to its owner they’re “the 4th smartest animal in the world,” beating out cats and dogs but a little behind elephants, dolphins, and chimps.

I didn’t believe her, so I googled and came across this gem: 5 Reasons Pigs are More Awesome Than You by The Oatmeal. And then to make sure THAT was legit (cuz, let’s face it, it’s hard to take a comic seriously as hilarious as it was!) and sure enough the facts were backed up. Incredible.

Here are what these 5 things are:

  1. Pigs know their name after only a few weeks being born
  2. They can eat anything – meat, tree bark, dead armadillos, rotting buffalo, 7-11 burritos
  3. They scream at 115 decibels (a jet engine fyi is around 113 decibels)
  4. They can run a 7 minute mile
  5. And lastly, a pig’s orgasm lasts 30 minutes!
  6. And lastly, a pig’s orgasm lasts 30 minutes! (It deserved to be repeated :))

Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to squeeze in all my financial questions while gawking at this guy (how much does it cost to feed him?? What about those vet visits you’ve been doing? You said you bought him from a breeder – what did that run you? Did you get a guarantee that he won’t grow to 400 pounds??? (A problem apparently with pet pigs – ending up with a behemoth because you didn’t do your research!)

I tried to google all this stuff too, but kept coming across graphs like these:

sausage pig meat breakdownSo basically never search online unless you want your heart broken :( Though obviously we all eat sausage and bacon and ham and who knows what else because they’re so delicious, yum yum!! (*Runs to the bathroom to cry*)

In other news, today marks month #1 of The Benjamin Franklin schedule! (how do you segue that?)

25 work days in a row waking up at 5 a.m. and zeroing in on that “powerful goodness” as he liked to say. And as random/surprising as this has all been (I’m typically a night person), I have to say the habit is here to stay. I can’t tell you how much waking up early has SLOWED DOWN my life and helped me focus/appreciate the days more. Turns out that Benny Franklin was pretty smart!

(And no – he really didn’t say that my blog “won’t put you to sleep” like I so cleverly put as my site’s tagline… You’d be amazed how many people have believed it to be so! :))

If you missed the beginning of this experiment, you can learn more about it here as well as what I learned after week #1, but in a nut shell this is what my latest “scheme” looks like:

ben franklin schedule month 1And here’s everything I’ve learned since, including the nuggets after week #1 and the newest ones:

  • The stillness of the morning is so beautiful
  • Time slows down and helps you appreciate life more
  • It’s nice to be able to set your own tone for the day!
  • It feels like a secret club
  • Your stress gets cut down
  • You seem to be able to soak up/learn stuff better
  • It’s nice having 100% YOU time
  • You’re able to work much more efficiently
  • *NEW* I realized I have *vivid* dreams every single night now! VS maybe once a week prior.
  • *NEW* I’ve been much more motivated to organize and de-clutter my stuff
  • *NEW* Taking a nap or exercise (or both) in the late afternoons help power back my energy IMMENSELY. Something I’ve only implemented in the past two weeks (and so far only 50% successful), but which really amps up my day when accomplished.
  • *NEW* I’ve been reconnecting with lost friendships over the years now that I seem to be finding my priorities again! Something most workaholics/adults can probably relate to :( I helped organize an old college meetup, made time for a happy with local friends, and I’m currently in the process of texting/calling those I haven’t chatted with in years. I feel like such a better human, haha…

So the surprises keep on coming :) And now that it’s been a while I’m finding it much easier to go to bed early/wake up as well. Though I am still working on replacing quality time with the wife now that our nights have shortened, as well as other areas that still need tweaking.

The only part this schedule has NOT affected is my finances. Which at first was a let down as I wanted to be able to scheme and strategize on making more/cutting expenses, but since I’m so immersed in $$$ the rest of the ENTIRE day awake – hah! – it’s been kind of a nice safe haven from it all. And has actually made the times I do think/read/share about it much more fun.

Lastly, the Zero Waste Journey has begun!

Okay, so I’m FAR from the amazingness that is Bea Johnson, but I have started implementing baby steps to help me become more conscious of my waste so I can live more minimally as well as save the planet in the process. And then of course all the while saving money which is the biggest icing on the cake if you ask me – hah.

Though so far all I’ve done is spend more :)

#1. Pile of microfiber towels ($14.99) Picked up these Zwipes Microfiber Cleaning Cloths to replace paper towels! So far the hardest habit to break…

#2. Glass jugs vs plastic jugs of milk ($4.00/ half gallon) This one was quite the shocker going from $4 a gallon to $8 a gallon (!!!), not including the $2.00/bottle deposit, but I must admit I’m pretty impressed/surprised at myself for trying this out. Not only are we no longer bringing home handfuls of plastic jugs any more (#2 of the 5 R’s Rule!), but I *swear* this organic milk tastes better too. Though one of my friends thinks it’s a trick as really cold milk always tastes better than normal cold milk – something these glass jars definitely help with.

I also feel like it’s healthier for you too, but then again maybe that’s also in my head? I’ll still need to research that (I have a feeling it’ll be a rabbit hole of conspiracy theories and marketing gimmicks), but regardless I’m having fun testing it all out and feel like I’ve been transported back into the 50’s :) Now only if the prices could revert too!

composter tumbler kitchen can#3. Kitchen compost can ($27.50) Got this Epica Stainless Steel Compost Bin off Amazon to start composting!! I put it under our sink to capture all the food waste throughout the week, and then once full I trot it over to our newly-assembled compost tumbler outside to start the composting process.

That’s right – I’m now a composter out of thin air too – hah! Again, something I’ve never considered/cared about in my 30+ years on this Earth yet all of a sudden I’m seeing the light… Which again is all due to B. Franklin and its opening up of my brain cells.

#4. Compost bin liners ($16.99). I’m debating whether this is necessary or not (damn you Amazon Recommendations), but figured I’d start with them and see how it goes… I ended up going with a 3-pack of BioBags which are “Food Waste Certified Compostable.”

#5. Composting Tumbler ($79.20). I researched all around and then read some blogs on composting, and finally reached the verdict that this YIMBY IM4000 Dual Chamber Tumbling Composter fit my lifestyle/house arrangement the best (and then waited for a $20 off sale on Amazon – W00T). I love that it has two chambers to compost in – one for fresh stuff, one for marinating – and I like that it’s not only movable, but that you need to go out and use your muscles to rotate it every few days too.

But the best part about this so far? My 3 year old knew exactly what I was setting up!! Incidentally his current favorite cartoon (Caillou) just did a whole episode on composting, and now he’s so excited to watch “the magic trick” of turning trash into dirt. Which I still don’t get how Mother Nature makes it so, but regardless it’s been a pleasure setting stuff up and getting started.

UPDATE: I’m currently reading Bea’s book on zero waste stuff, and is where I’m getting all these ideas from (like the glass jars for milk). Here’s a link to it if anyone wants to check it out :) Zero Waste Home: The Ultimate Guide to Simplifying Your Life by Reducing Your Waste

And that’s been my life lately – how about you? :) I know I just threw a bunch of random stuff your way, but hopefully you’ve gleaned a few nuggets off it and your wheels are turning to try out something new too. You’ve got 3 totally awesome avenues!

  1. Getting a pet pig
  2. Waking up an hour (or three) earlier
  3. Trying composting/minimizing your waste at home!

Sadly any three would probably be more interesting for your friends to talk about this weekend than proper $$$ management :( But the beauty is each one opens up a door to sneak it in! And if all else fails, you can always go with #8 from my list of money-free weekend activities – hah.

Happy savings/piggy dreams.

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  1. Chris @ Flipping a Dollar September 4, 2015 at 5:26 AM

    Lmao. That pig is awesome.

    We’ve been debating about composting. the previous owners left a bin out back but its still on our to do list.

    For the pig lovers, remember the Simpsons!

    “(Lisa) “I’m going to become a vegetarian” (Homer) “Does that mean you’re not going to eat any pork?” “Yes” “Bacon?” “Yes Dad” Ham?” “Dad all those meats come from the same animal” “Right Lisa, some wonderful, magical animal!””

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 2:39 PM

      A free bin – woo! You’re halfway there already! :)

  2. Chris Muller September 4, 2015 at 5:38 AM

    Dude pigs are crazy smart. I’ve wanted a pet pig forever. When I was growing up a girl in my 2nd grade class had 3 miniature pigs – Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. It was awesome. And as a vegetarian, that chart makes me go “bleugh”.

    Composting is a bad ass way to eliminate waste – my mother in law has a composter almost exactly like the one you bought that she’s been using for quite some time. Congrats on that. Isn’t it weird how buying things that help the environment and reduce waste don’t really weigh on your frugal mind? When I buy stuff like that it’s almost as if I am not frugal at all, lol.

    I’ve been trying the Benny Frank as much as possible with you, but I’ll admit I haven’t gone 25 days in a row. I have taken the occasional “6 AM wakeup”. I’ve actually coupled the Benny Frank with a few other tools that make it work really well for me and ensure I’m productive with the time. How often do you stick to the schedule you’ve laid out? I’d probably go nuts if I followed the same routine every day. Just curious… Anyway, good Friday, brother, and have a great weekend!

    1. Chris Muller September 4, 2015 at 6:26 AM

      Oh yeah, I should probably mention the other tools I referred to…

      1. The Pomodoro Technique – helps me focus on tasks for a finite period of time, then rewards me with a break (Read about it here: http://pomodorotechnique.com/)
      2. Remember the Milk – bad ass little app that lets me list out all the things going on in my brain in order to categorize them. Once I complete a task I get to scratch it off the list! https://www.rememberthemilk.com/
      3. F.Lux – I already mentioned this one to you, but it works wonders in the morning when my eyes are tired as hell… It coordinates your screen’s “temperature” with the sunlight! https://justgetflux.com/

      If you try either let me know how it goes!

      1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:29 PM

        rock on – thanks for these!

        to answer your question – yeah, I keep close to the morning routine for sure, but the afternoon one changes up depending on my mood/kids/and anything outside of our normal schedule (dr appointments, weird errands, etc).

        by and large though I’m pretty good about working within the time blocks. And it’s not too bad as I get to choose what to work on/etc :) so it’s easy to change things up when needed… tonight’s actually the first night in like 2 weeks I’m doing blog stuff at night! after 7 years of night working – crazy! So nice to go to bed not thinking about blog/work stuff….

  3. Thias @It Pays Dividends September 4, 2015 at 6:48 AM

    Pigs are the best pets! You can enjoy them as a companion for their whole lives and then when they pass, you can have one hell of a goodbye meal? Heartless? ehh maybe :)

    Nice job on sticking to the early mornings! It is a hard habit to stay consistent to but with 25 days under your belt you are almost to habit territory!

    Have a great weekend J$!

  4. Emma | Money Can Buy Me Happiness September 4, 2015 at 7:23 AM

    Yeah I’m all for the compost bin liners. Especially when the process starts in your kitchen. It can get a bit messy otherwise – and smelly when it’s hot out.

  5. Steve Miller September 4, 2015 at 7:31 AM

    I was munching on some bacon when I came across today’s post, but I won’t BOAR you with the details.

    Nice job on being an early riser, I’ve done this pretty much all my working life so I totally get what you are saying about the quietness and beauty of the morning.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:31 PM

      Puns! Yes!!

  6. Kalie September 4, 2015 at 7:35 AM

    We love composting for our garden, and have gotten by with two piles in the corners of our fence and a pitchfork.

    I accidentally tried the Franklin early rising this week while suffering jet lag after international travel. I definitely enjoyed the quiet time but was crashing by early afternoon since I was still recovering from a really long journey home. I’m planning to strike a middle ground with it now that I’m adjusted to our time zone again. Glad you’re still liking it.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:33 PM

      If we ever get a bigger yard I’m totally trying the “piles in the dirt” method. Super easy and goes right back into the ground! I don’t garden or anything so I’d just leave it all there and people like you can come over and take it all for free :)

  7. Des @ Half Banked September 4, 2015 at 7:53 AM

    Pigs! They really do make your day when you stumble across them on a walk. There’s one that lives in my mother’s neighbourhood, and they walk it in the nearby dog park all the time. The pig and the dogs couldn’t care less either, they’re just like “Oh, hey other animal, fancy seeing you here” and go on about their business. The pig’s poor owners though, it’s almost as bad as walking a puppy – they get stopped by everyone, haha.

    To add a fun note to that “Pigs eat EVERYTHING” fact, my mom felt bad for our neighbourhood pig this past winter, because it gets really cold where we live. So she went out to buy a few used coats, and sewed together a custom winter coat for the pig (total cost probably under $6, because knowing my epically frugal mom, she wouldn’t have had it any other way.)

    Needless to say, the coat was good for one walk and a really fibrous snack.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:35 PM

      HAH! Wow! I didn’t know they ate clothes! Haha…

      And yes – this poor piggy mother was getting stopped every 10 feet and pretty much answering the same questions over and over again :) I tried to make mine quick and limited to only the essentials (though still kicking myself I didn’t get the $$ stats!), but still – you’d have to find new paths – or times – to walk to avoid the crowds. This one was prime time morning when all the dogs and joggers and babies were out, haha… and on a bike path no less!

  8. Elise@ Simply Scaled Down September 4, 2015 at 8:01 AM

    Awesome job! I have to admit, I’ve tried my hand at composting quite a few times in the past and I’ve never gotten that black gold. Just stinky rotting garbage and ants…lots and lots of ants. I’m sure my PH was off… and God knows I’m far to lazy to google how to fix its, so it just gets tossed in the woods and I assume some woodland creature has the best day ever.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:38 PM

      that’s actually my fear at this point :) no ants or anything of that nature yet, but I haven’t been doing a great job of adding in leaves or grass or the other outdoorsy stuff to my pile yet. And it def. stinks, haha… but it’s all outside so I don’t notice it unless I walk by it. Still, I’ll need to find that right balance for sure to get it all broken down. baby steps.

  9. Taylor Lee @ Engineer Cents September 4, 2015 at 8:08 AM

    I’ve been wanting to get a pet pig forever! Though, I haven’t because those oinkers get to be hundreds of pounds when they grow up. Not sure that’ll forever dissuade me though…

  10. Jover2 September 4, 2015 at 8:13 AM

    Would you still need to compost if you had a pig? They could just eat it all and fast-forward the composting process! ;)

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:39 PM

      you know, that might be something!

      I’m not joking – I’m totally going to google that right now and see how safe/healthy that is! I’ll seriously getting a pig for that, haha… and ‘cuz it’s cool as $hit.

      UPDATE: This was one of the links found – Nooooooo!!!


      UPDATE 2: Yes! Seems like they CAN eat most of the compostable stuff! not coffee grounds it seems, and maybe or maybe not meat, but lots of table scraps for sure! Totally running this by my wife, haha…


  11. Penny @ She Picks Up Pennies September 4, 2015 at 8:14 AM

    We are working on strategizing for a rain barrel. I’d love to have chickens, but I know that wouldn’t end well. I just finished reading an urban homesteading book and there was a section called “Keeping them from killing each other.” The compost bin is fantastic. I’ve been toying with the idea of a worm bin for a while, but I’d have to more research.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:49 PM

      Yeah! fresh eggs, mmm mmmmmm…

      I like the rain barrel idea too, but I never garden or need to use the hose really so no point in collecting any over in this household…

      Also heard worms were a great route for composting too – let me know if you end up trying it!

  12. Catina Marie September 4, 2015 at 8:23 AM

    A pig…really? So cute! (But no thank you – I got enough pet problems. LOL)

    I am excited to hear your morning schedule is working out. I have always been an early riser with the goal of getting on hour of “me time” in before the world owns me. I may have a hard time making it past 9pm because I wake so early but SHOOOOOOTTTTTTTT, I feel like a champion after that one hour and like nothing can stop me.

    I really need to get with the “no waste” program. I have been steadily decluttering but for some reason my trash can is FULL, like all the time. I am not sure about giving up paper towels but I did buy microfiber for cleaning…all but the toilet. I have 3 in my house and wipe them down with towels and throw those nasty things away. I think I will implement your “challenge everything” motto in this area of my life and see what I can do. I am certain there are improvements to be made.

    As always, you ROCK YO. Have a great holiday weekend!

    1. Catina Marie September 4, 2015 at 8:26 AM

      Random after thought:
      The snakes keep getting out, maybe I should look into a pig. :-/

      1. Jake Cutter September 4, 2015 at 9:07 PM

        Pigs eat snakes, too.

        1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:49 PM


        2. Catina Marie September 5, 2015 at 9:23 AM

          LOL! Seriously????

        3. Catina Marie September 5, 2015 at 9:24 AM

          No way! Wait, really?

  13. Michael September 4, 2015 at 8:28 AM

    It is amazing how our bodies and minds seem to be so attentive the earlier we rise. I have always been a morning person since I was young but over the years it has become religious to be up at 430-5am. I get a ton of side-projects, reading and thinking done before most people are considering waking up.

    I have also found that I am more attentive at my job because my brain is firing and ready to go versus rolling out of bed, rushing to get ready, and getting to my job still asleep like the average American does.

    Composting sounds interesting. Will be paying attention for future posts and it just may have to be something I start doing at my townhome.

  14. Robin @ The Thrifty Peach September 4, 2015 at 8:31 AM

    Our neighbors used to have a mini pig for about 17 minutes before they realized that they are not cute and cuddly and they couldn’t get it potty trained in the house.

    And good for you for trying out zero waste! It’s addictive. Getting rid of paper towels was hard for me, too, so I just got rid of them completely and slowly adjusted. Now I use rags everywhere.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:50 PM

      The stone cold method – I like it!

  15. Justin @ Root of Good September 4, 2015 at 8:43 AM

    I couldn’t sleep past 6 this morning so I got up and got at it! “Got at it” for me means something very different than most folks who are packing up and rushing to work. I sat and read a great book for the hour and a half before walking the kids to school and having breakfast with them.

    I find that if I don’t concentrate on doing the fun, relaxing, enjoyable stuff first thing in the morning or intentionally program it in my day somewhere, then I tend to get distracted with chores and less fun stuff. Sort of like B. Franklin’s schedule. :)

  16. Slackerjo September 4, 2015 at 8:56 AM

    I strongly recommend that you never read “The Jungle.”

    Old t-shirts, pajamas, sheets, etc, make for excellent cleaning rags. Old socks are great for dusting. Old socks with a lot of holes in them are excellent for cleaning my bike chain or oven before they go into the trash.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:52 PM

      Good tips!

  17. tom September 4, 2015 at 9:06 AM

    It was my understanding that in these zero waste challenges, recycling doesn’t count as waste. As long as you can recycle the container, it’s OK to buy: e.g. gallon of milk in plastic jug.

    Am I wrong on this?

    1. Robin @ The Thrifty Peach September 4, 2015 at 10:46 AM

      You should read Bea’s book. It’s great, and she does a great job of explaining why recycling isn’t the best fix. In a nutshell, recycling isn’t the answer for everything. It still doesn’t allow us to address the bigger problem– that we are consuming too much and using so many resources on packaging that is ultimately thrown out. Recycling them only allows the waste to become a lesser product than what it was before. For example, plastic jugs typically aren’t recycled and turned into more plastic jugs. Her book suggests taking glass jars to the grocery store to store the meat you need to buy and other bulk purchases, all to avoid their packaging waste because you can reuse the glass jars.

      1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 9:55 PM

        YUP! I’m reading Bea’s book *right now* and is exactly why I’m trying the glass jar route :) And just this afternoon I figured out I could get bigger containers for the milk which not only helps with carrying around all the jugs (I’m trying to only shop for them once a week) but also cuts down on price a bit. So pretty stoked about that!

        Here’s the link to Bea’s book btw for anyone interested:

        Zero Waste Home: The Ultimate Guide to Simplifying Your Life by Reducing Your Waste

  18. Mrs. Crackin' the Whip September 4, 2015 at 9:06 AM

    Based on the way the pig can scream, I hope it lives on a street far far away!

  19. downunder sugarglider September 4, 2015 at 9:10 AM

    well – I haven’t gotten to the part where I can wake up at 5am yet. It is still winter here in Australia and freakin’ cold!

    but I am a mad keen composter – and honestly – you could do it cheaper. I started 20 yrs ago by getting a large plastic garbage bin and cutting the base off. Turning it upside down on a bare patch of dirt and putting the lid on. Lasted a decade. Now I have a plastic bin box thing – just put on a bare patch of dirt and start throwing stuff in. Add some dry / carbon based stuff occasionally to keep it balanced and not too wet – like shredded waste paper, dry leaves, etc if you are really serious about composting add some manures and hay/straw as layers, and fork or corkscrew turner to aerate.

    we just keep a small plastic bin on the bench top to collect our food waste, and no liner bags. I rinse the bin out, and at times it gets to go through the dishwasher.

    I have started using a bokashi bucket in the kitchen – which has no liner bags but I do have to buy bokashi powder which costs me about $50 per year. This can then be buried directly into the garden beds and immediately feeds the soil and worms.

    we really don’t spend hardly anything on maintaining compost.

    One day when I get up early, I’ll go out and turn it over.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:00 PM

      All fantastic ideas – thanks for the tips :) I bet I’ll laugh at myself a few years from now when I’ve figured out the best/frugal way to do stuff, but at least it got me started!

  20. Will September 4, 2015 at 9:14 AM

    Winston Churchill… “I’m fond of pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals.”

  21. Prudence Debtfree September 4, 2015 at 9:24 AM

    Very cool about the dreams! A few nights ago, I had a dream in which I ran ahead of my daughter to protect her from approaching lions. I lay down dead still when I got close, and one of them lay down on me protectively – evaporating my fear. It was SO real. Trying to figure out what it meant!
    We have been selling stuff on Kijiji like crazy lately – and we’ve had a garage sale. So far, we’re close to $1,000. I’ve been saying we would do this for a long time. Finally doing it!
    Very intrigued by your Ben Franklin Schedule.
    (Sorry for this all-over-the-place comment. But it goes well with your all-over-the-place post, doesn’t it? : )

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:02 PM

      Hah! It does indeed :) I love some A.D.D. action – bring it on! (and weird dream for sure!)

  22. Lisa O September 4, 2015 at 9:26 AM

    Starting next week, I am going to get up in the morning earlier to start my day. I have been bad lately and waking up an hour before work and then rushing to get here on time and it doesn’t make a great start to your day.

    I am glad to hear that you have started the compost project. We started ours this summer also and it really is easy. When I cook, I have a bowl that I throw scrapes in and walk them out to our compost pile. Our pile is in the back of the yard in an old flower bed that is lined with block & wood rails….we are not as fancy as you. We pitch fork it every few days to keep it all working. It really has made it so my garbage doesn’t smell in the house and the compost doesn’t smell either….win/win!

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:02 PM

      Hey, that works! And good luck with the early wakeups, I hope you love it! :)

  23. Tonya@Budget and the Beach September 4, 2015 at 9:35 AM

    My college boyfriend had a pot-bellied (or is it belly?)pig. The pig was hilarious, although he did stay in a barn. Glad waking up super early has given you so many benefits. I’m not waking up early, but I am doing my 10-minute morning meditation and I find it really helpful. Consistency is key!

  24. Dividend Growth Investor September 4, 2015 at 9:54 AM

    Benjamin Franklin has inspired a lot of great businessman back in his days and subsequently after. He had a lot of accomplishments accross multiple disciplines, which is amazing.

    If you like Ben, you you might also like Charlie Munger’s “Poor Charlie’s Almanack” as well.

    Thomas Mellon, who was the founder of the rich banking Mellon Family was also inspired by Ben..

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:05 PM

      Ooooh I’ll totally check that out, thx man! Never heard of before.

  25. jestjack September 4, 2015 at 10:03 AM

    Congrats on the composter! It’s gonna change your life! Between recycling and composting you’re going to have very little trash. Now you need to read up on the “virtues ” of compost tea….Excellent for vegetable and flower gardens….

  26. Kayla @ Femme Frugality September 4, 2015 at 10:07 AM

    I have been thinking/talking about doing some composting too, but my dad basically made fun of me about it. I still think I want to try it now. Will you give us an update on it in a few weeks so I can hear more about how it’s going for you before I take it on?

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:07 PM

      It’s okay – everyone’s making fun of me around here too, especially my wife :) They won’t be making fun when we start saving lots of $$$ and THE PLANET though – hah!

      Yup – will put out an update after awhile!

  27. Shawna September 4, 2015 at 10:17 AM

    Congrats on the awesome changes you’ve made recently! I’ve been meaning to start composting… I need to get on that! You know, going with a vegan diet would help out a lot with some of your current goals. For one, it’s cheaper and could help you cut your grocery bill. For two, there are awesome vegan sausages that taste just like the real thing so you wouldn’t have to go into a closet to cry anymore. ;-) And three, it’s the best way possible for any human to help the planet which would definitely support your zero-waste efforts.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:07 PM

      Okay, now you’re just talking crazy :)

  28. Melissa September 4, 2015 at 10:24 AM

    Oo, this week I have kinda failed on the Ben Franklin challenge… getting up early is so hard! But I would say it was a 50/50 week, which isn’t so bad, right? Not going to lie, I love the IDEA of having a pig (and I heard they’re really clean, too!), but I can barely keep up with the 2 cats, dog, and fiance (he counts as a pet sometimes ;))

    LOVE your composting set up!! Can’t wait to read more about that! Let us know if it gets funky or attracts any rodents/gross bugs… :)

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:09 PM

      I did see one line of black sticky goo coming out of it yesterday, haha… I read that it’s common though?

  29. Mr. Utopia @ Personal Finance Utopia September 4, 2015 at 10:29 AM

    They last 30 minutes and apparently are multiple too (since it deserved to be repeated)! Get it? Multiple? Waa waa.

    The local radio station just had a segment lasting a few days. A little girl had written in sharing how her pig was extremely smart and loved by everyone. She was winning contests with him…his name was “Sneakers.” Apparently Sneakers’ time was about up though because he was going to be be brought to the fair and well, then, yeah. So the DJ’s thought it would be a great idea to get a fund me page up to get enough money to buy the pig for her and save it from slaughter. They ended up getting her on the radio to live interview and then they surprised her with the good news. She declined, “yeah, can’t do that…that won’t work.” The end (literally, I guess).

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:10 PM

      Woah! So nice of them to raise that $$ for her though!

  30. Zandria September 4, 2015 at 11:10 AM

    I recently decided I’m throwing away too many veggie and fruit peels myself! I’m going the easier/cheaper route right now — I’m putting my scraps in a large Ziploc bag in the freezer, then I take them to my in-law’s house on the weekend and dump them into their backyard composter (they only live 1.5 miles away, so it’s not inconvenient). Then I rinse out and reuse the Ziploc so I’m not throwing it out every week.

    1. Tru September 4, 2015 at 12:41 PM

      If you ever need to replace the Ziploc bag I bet you could find a plastic container at the thrift store or get a Ziploc container at the grocery store and do the same thing. I’m thinking the cleaning would be easier with a container rather than the bag.

      1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:11 PM

        Yes! Someone else just told me they do that too in the freezer. But they still have a bin outside to move it to once it fills up. Guess they don’t have any cool mother-in-laws :)

  31. mollyjade September 4, 2015 at 11:17 AM

    How do you expect us to read the rest of this post when you start off with that photo?

  32. Maggie @ Northern Expenditure September 4, 2015 at 11:20 AM

    How long do you nap? I’m trying to transition into a similar wake-up schedule, but am struggling to find the right amount of nap time without wasting time. Nice work on the zero-waste baby steps! Every bit helps!

    And bless you for letting your kid watch Calliou. It’s banned in my house. There ain’t nobody more annoying than that kid.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:14 PM

      Haha…. he is pretty whiny :)

      Still trying to figure out the optimized time, but been setting my alarm for either 30 or 40 mins out cuz it takes me foreverrrr to fall asleep, but from what I hear from those who have mastered it you usually just need to tack on 5 or so mins on top of the 20 and you’re good. Also headphones or white noise supposedly helps too, though it seems I finally doze off and then the alarm goes off mins later, ugh. I figure at least my body is resting, eh?

  33. John September 4, 2015 at 11:45 AM

    Skip the compost bags. I’ve been using a kitchen composter for years. Never used bags and never had an issue with odors or anything. I empty it as soon as it’s full, give it a quick rinse, and throw it in the dishwasher. The filters will last much longer than advertised too as long as you don’t overfill the composter to the point that your scraps contact the lid/filter.

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:15 PM

      I think I’m going to try that route once we’re all done w/ these and see how it goes. Thx for sharing :)

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:16 PM

      You’re bad ass! Haha… love it.

  34. Tru September 4, 2015 at 12:38 PM

    I recently started composting as well! After talking about it for so long, I decided to actually give it a shot! I didn’t buy a bin though. I saw a neighbor getting rid of a plastic cat litter container, so I drilled some holes in it and am using that. It’s big enough to compost in and small enough to toss around to aerate.

  35. bethh September 4, 2015 at 12:48 PM

    I don’t think the compost bags will break down in your backyard composter – they require the hotter temperatures that occur in large-scale (professional) composting facilities. So save yourself the messy heartbreak and don’t dump the bags into your composter! You’ll just be fishing the bag bits out of your compost later on!

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:18 PM

      I did wonder about that… so half of them weren’t even thrown in the composter as I just dumped all the junk out, and then the others did. So I can put it to test and see what happens :) Though I guess if the others are going straight to the trash I’m actually adding to the waste??

  36. Sylvia @ Miss PF September 4, 2015 at 1:54 PM

    Seriously, I love how it feels like a secret club! :)

    Good luck on the zero-waste lifestyle. I’m looking into it…

  37. DP @ Someday Extraordinary September 4, 2015 at 2:37 PM

    I’m a HUGE proponent of getting up early. I’m not sure if there really is such a thing as a “morning person” vs. a “night owl” or if it is simply the habit that a person has formed. Habits are pretty powerful, obviously. However, I’ve gotten up early almost my entire life for practices, work, etc. and I still tend to do it even when I don’t have to. There’s something tranquil about being up before everyone else. The quiet time is the best for meditating and envisioning what you plan to accomplish that day. Plus, I find that I’m much more productive on the days that I can spend a little time in the morning thinking it through first.

    Keep up the good work! Mr. Franklin had it right in my opinion!


  38. Fervent Finance September 4, 2015 at 3:03 PM

    I actually knew that pigs were smarter than cats and dogs, but I don’t see to many on walks in NYC. Miley Cyrus has a pet pig, I do know that. What I do see a lot of is people “walking” their cats, either in a stroller or perched on top of their human owner’s head…

    1. J. Money September 4, 2015 at 10:19 PM

      What the????

      I remember someone there once having a pet alligator and getting in trouble for it :) Kept it in their bathtub!!

  39. downunder sugarglider September 4, 2015 at 3:23 PM

    strewth – i have woken naturally at 5am

  40. Heather @ Simply Save September 4, 2015 at 3:38 PM

    I’m not totally committing to Zero Waste but I’m trying to replace disposable items with a reusable alternative. This week I almost bought more paper towels, but I caught myself first!

  41. Mike September 4, 2015 at 8:04 PM

    What a cute piggie! I think I’d still prefer a good ol’ fashioned dog though ;)

  42. PL September 4, 2015 at 11:17 PM

    Love this because I have just committed to the ‘early morning rise’ to focus and maximize the use of my time! thanks for inadvertently solidifying my resolve–goes for looking at improving my waste footprint as well. Great stuff!!

    1. J. Money September 7, 2015 at 12:36 PM

      Glad to hear!

  43. Financial Samurai September 6, 2015 at 4:09 PM

    Nice pig! If you get one, it might force you to wake up an hour+ earlier. Knock off two goals w/ one stone!

  44. Debt Hater September 6, 2015 at 7:59 PM

    My friend’s sister actually has a pet pig, and I have to agree with the jet engine sound. That thing is LOUD and not pleasing on the ears at all. When he’s not screaming though, I do agree with how smart he is. And he’s trained to use the litter box as well.

    Nice idea with the micro fiber cloths to replace paper towels, never though of that. We use them for cleaning/waxing the cars and stuff outside already since they don’t leave any residue or scratches.

    1. J. Money September 7, 2015 at 12:37 PM

      I didn’t think about the pig making any noise INSIDE his house, huh… Isn’t he supposed to be smart enough to do so outside to not bother anyone?? :)

  45. Autumn September 8, 2015 at 4:51 PM

    I have been reading The Zero-Waste Lifestyle by Amy Korst and I have Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson in my stack to read next. I have been thinking a lot about how to be better for the environment while saving money for a few years now. I thought it was hard until I watched a video by Bea Johnson a month ago and in it she said they were spending 40% less with this lifestyle. Sold!

    We have been using a double sided a compost bin for a couple of years and the book Let It Rot by Stu Campbell. I am just realizing how much of our trash really can and should go in our compost, like tissue. We have also been using cloth napkins, white rags that we bought for a great price at Costco. We also have been using Green Earth Bags Reusable Cotton Canvas Grocery Tote Bag on and off for a few years. We have always recycled so that was never an issue. What I am trying to say is that I was doing somethings already but some of it was half way.

    Now we are trying to compost more of our trash, use Goodwill more and use our tote bags every time. We also clean with vinegar and baking soda. I really like that I can safely clean with my 10 month old underfoot.

    1. J. Money September 9, 2015 at 2:03 PM

      Nice!!! I didn’t know you could compost tissues? I use like 10 a day on my kids! haha… which is down from 20x a day now that I’m working in cloths ;)

      Totally gonna check out that rotting book, thx for dropping it.

  46. Kate @ itsakatelife March 14, 2016 at 12:50 PM

    Could you write a post with an update about the composting? Wondering how that’s going (if you’re still doing it), what’s going well, what’s not, and what you’d do differently. Thanks!

    1. J. Money March 15, 2016 at 7:01 AM

      Hey Kate!

      Nothing much to report there, I’m afraid. I am still composting, however my scraps don’t seem to be turning into compost much, haha… Not sure exactly what I’m missing here, but my bin is getting full and the cold winter didn’t seem to help things. Hoping with Spring it heats up and helps decompose better! I might have to empty it into a hole and start from scratch!