MASSIVE NEWS —> Goodbye, and Thank You.

Good morning everyone!!! Got some big news to share…

I’m Taking a Sabbatical…

I’ve written 172 articles for this blog in the past couple years, and there’s 1 overarching theme I hope has shined through… It’s that life is more important than money.

That being said, there’s no better time to practice what I preach and disconnect from work for a few months while I shuffle priorities around. Hanging with my family is my new full-time job, and I’m going to stop blogging here.

It’s sad stepping away from Budgets Are Sexy because this has been a dream job. And I honestly don’t know if or when I’ll get back to an awesome position like this. The next chapter for me is scary in many ways…

→ Scared about money: Even though my wife and I have more than most people in life, dropping one of our incomes (while our expenses are increasing) is going to put a large dent in our finances. We will have a negative savings rate this year.

→ Scared about future work: This is my second “career break” within a 5-year time frame. My mind is filled with all sorts of *irrational* thoughts like “who the fuck is going to hire me again after this? I have zero skills to offer anyone, ever.” These aren’t realistic or true thoughts but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have them.

But, even with all these fears and unknowns, this move is still a no-brainer decision for me. We have to take a leap of faith. And, there’s plenty to be excited about too!!!…

→ Excited about a new challenge!: Tackling scary new things in life usually results in more good outcomes than bad ones. You never know what you’re going to be good at unless you try. So, I’m excited to try.

→ Excited about a work break: Sabbaticals result in a lot of personal growth and valuable life epiphanies. I’m looking forward to taking a step back and reassessing passions and work options.

The Show Must Go On!

While the owners of this blog haven’t quite figured out a new direction just yet, I’ve done my best to line up some good content for the next little bit.

Budgets will feature some of my favorite oldies from J$ himself, so you’ll be receiving those posts in your inbox for a while. 

Thank you, thank you, thank you. I’m extremely appreciative to you all for reading my dribble over the past few years. Thanks for your comments, replies and encouragement.

I’ll still be blogging daily over at my personal site if you want to stay connected and receive my overly positive daily epigrams.

Goodbye, all. 😢 



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  1. Financial Samurai February 25, 2022 at 4:33 AM

    Wonderful news on the little one! So blessed to have you guys. You got this! And will do great.

    The love of a parent knows no bounds. I don’t think you’ll ever regret spending more time with your son.

    All the best!


    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 9:55 AM

      Thanks a lot, Sam. You were right about perspectives and priorities shifting when kids arrive. There’s a whole new level of motivation to do better and be better.

  2. J$ February 25, 2022 at 6:31 AM

    Congrats dude!!

    You’re gonna be SUCH a great dad :) All that warmth and positivity – and TIME you’ll be spending with him!! That’s all kids want at the end of the day, to be loved and paid attention to… What a blessing for all three of you.

    (and thanks for keeping MY baby alive for so long too! couldn’t have asked for a better steward of it when I left… I appreciate you, man.)

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 9:57 AM

      Thank YOU, J.

      Now we just gotta find another sappy finance weirdo to carry the torch on the blog. :)

      1. KJ February 27, 2022 at 1:19 AM

        I love the love and respect you two have for each other! Still miss you J$.

        Congrats to you and the Mrs, Joel! Welcome to parenthood…have fun and enjoy it!
        We will certainly miss your encouraging words, warmth, and good vibes.

        1. J$ February 28, 2022 at 10:04 AM


  3. Jason Brown February 25, 2022 at 6:48 AM

    What an amazing story! Thanks for sharing your journey with us Joel. You two are going to be incredible parents. What a lucky kid. I wish you all the best in your future endeavors!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 9:58 AM

      Cheers Jason. Might be calling you for questions on money lessons for kiddos later :)

  4. Ben February 25, 2022 at 7:13 AM

    Congrats, Joel! So happy for you!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 9:59 AM

      Thanks Ben. Hope all is well dude!

  5. Liz February 25, 2022 at 7:19 AM

    Congratulations! This is such happy news! Thank you for all you’ve done since taking over. It’s been fun getting to know you and your perspective on FI. Wishing you all the best and so much fun creating awesome memories as your family grows.

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 9:59 AM

      Thanks for reading and sharing your input over the years Liz! :)

  6. Christine February 25, 2022 at 7:30 AM

    Congratulations! Enjoy your time with your little guy! ❤️

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:00 AM

      It’s only been a little while and I already have a million funny stories and good times. Maybe I should start a SAHD blog to share some of this stuff. :)

  7. Lisa M O'Brien February 25, 2022 at 7:44 AM

    Congrats & Best of Luck! Being a parent is the best gift in the world.

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:08 AM

      I’ve heard people say this… and now I’m starting to understand why. Thank you Lisa :)

  8. Dave @ Accidental FIRE February 25, 2022 at 7:56 AM

    Huge congrats dude, you’re gonna crush it. I love the way you’re approaching a new adventure of such magnitude!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:09 AM

      Thanks, Dave. Truth be told i have no clue what I’m doing. :) But I’m confident things will work out!

  9. KY Math February 25, 2022 at 8:16 AM

    Gonna miss your positive messages but I totally understand, having been a SAHM when my kids were young. You are in for so much fun!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:10 AM

      It’s amazing to see how much kids laugh! Everything is funny, and it’s really contagious. This little dude is making me see everyday things in a new light. So fun!

  10. Michael O February 25, 2022 at 8:49 AM

    Congratulations! I will miss the blog posts but I know you will enjoy getting to know and take care your kid, and will never regret spending time with him. What an adventure!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:11 AM

      Cheers Mike. I’m lucky to have the opportunity to. :)

  11. Adam February 25, 2022 at 9:31 AM

    It’s great to hear the system is working for you and for him. Congratulations, and all the good vibes from this side of the country!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:48 PM

      Thanks Adam! We’ve still got a long road ahead of us, but it’s great to finally get some traction. Cheers and have a great weekend!

  12. SL February 25, 2022 at 10:08 AM

    Aww, will miss your posts. As J$ said, you have done a wonderful job keeping the spirit of what he built this into. Your dedication will translate wonderfully into being a parent of any type. :)

    Good Hunting! (for your shoes, remotes, and all the child proofing you didn’t think you would need)

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:48 PM

      Thank you SL :). Cheers for reading and commenting over the years. Good things ahead!!!

  13. Sudz February 25, 2022 at 10:19 AM

    Congratulations, Joel and family! I wish you all the best on this next chapter of your life!



    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:49 PM

      Thanks Sudz ;)

  14. Stevo February 25, 2022 at 11:35 AM

    Congrats! You’re definitely doing the right thing! You’ll never regret spending more time with your kid(s), especially when they’re young! Hope to see your posts again in the future

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:49 PM

      Cheers Stevo. I hope to be here again in the future. We’ll see!

  15. Leslie February 25, 2022 at 1:36 PM

    Congratulations! Parenting is a wild ride, but worth it. So glad you’ll keep up the daily emails! I really enjoy them. Best of luck.

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:50 PM

      Thanks Leslie! My daily blog keeps me accountable. Chat soon :)

  16. Mega February 25, 2022 at 2:45 PM

    Congratulations! Child/children are the best gift from God :)

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:51 PM

      I’ve heard this a lot, and am agreeing so far. Kids are freaking miracles, no matter how they come into your life :)

  17. Impersonal Finances February 25, 2022 at 4:01 PM

    That is massive news on multiple fronts! Have enjoyed your admirable work here in place of J$. Enjoy the hell out of what’s next!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:51 PM

      Cheers IF. Thank you for doing what you do and keep up the good work!!!

  18. J February 25, 2022 at 4:47 PM

    That is really big news! Congratulations! You’re perseverance has paid off. I wish your family nothing but the best! :-)

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:52 PM

      Thanks J :). It’s a frustratingly long process — but taking it a day at a time has helped. Kind of like how finances work :)

  19. Lillie's Mimi February 25, 2022 at 5:53 PM

    Congratulations on the next big adventure! Parenting is a fun, tiring,full time job. With the attitude you’re bringing to the table your new little family will flourish. Will miss you here, you’ve done a great job.

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:53 PM

      Thank you! Yep, positivity is half the battle (i hope!)

  20. David M February 25, 2022 at 8:47 PM

    I thought you (Joel) were the owner of this website after purchasing it from J Money; did I miss something?

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:55 PM

      Hey David! The Motley Fool own this blog – they purchased from J$ a while back. Not sure what the plans are going forward… stay tuned!

  21. FullTime Finance February 25, 2022 at 9:01 PM

    Congrats and welcome to the tipsy turney world of foster care.

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 10:59 PM

      I almost messaged you the other day for some advice… But I’m going to save up my credit for when I have a doozy of a problem –> then you’ll be hearing from me haha! Thanks for the encouragement FTF. The foster system community has been really supportive!!

  22. Jeffrey February 25, 2022 at 11:35 PM

    Thank you for many thoughtful, interesting posts. J$ chose well when he picked you.

    Kids are like magnifying lenses for all experiences: your highs will be higher, your lows deeper. You are in for the ride of your life! (May it be truly fulfilling!)

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 11:56 PM

      Thank you Jeffrey! Great insight :)

  23. Nate H February 26, 2022 at 8:53 AM

    Congratulations Joel! This is such amazing news! Your content here and your personal blog have been wonderful. I’ll miss this material, but am glad you’ll be keeping your other blog active. As everyone has said, you’ve got your priorities straight and it’s great to see you practicing what you preach.

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 11:57 PM

      Thanks Nate! Loved your input over the years :). More good stuff to come in the future I’m sure!

  24. One Frugal Girl February 26, 2022 at 10:05 AM

    Congratulations! I hope you enjoy every minute of your time off!

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 11:58 PM

      Thanks Jewels!!

  25. Cindy February 26, 2022 at 7:41 PM

    Congratulations! Parenting is the most rewarding thing that we can do; to love, teach, and grow with a child. I wish you the best and am super happy for your new adventure.

    1. Joel February 26, 2022 at 11:59 PM

      This kid has already taught me a lot about myself. He copies everything I do, which makes me reflect on things I do more. Didn’t expect it to happen so fast but I’m learning a TON :)

      Thanks Cindy!!

  26. Chloe Choe February 27, 2022 at 6:09 AM

    It’s impressive to see how far you’ve come with the blog in 14 years! I just started a year ago and I love to see progress reports like yours to get inspired. Thank you for sharing and you’re going to be an amazing dad!

    1. Joel February 27, 2022 at 10:36 AM

      Hey Chloe! Cheers :). All credit goes to J$ who started the blog. I’ve only been here for a couple years –> and hopefully someone new will carry the torch going forward!

  27. Susan T Dean February 27, 2022 at 1:18 PM

    So happy for you

  28. Stacey February 28, 2022 at 9:40 AM

    Congratulations! Best wishes to your family. And thank you for the much needed reminder that life is more than just money.

  29. Olaf, the Mile High Finance Guy March 1, 2022 at 1:52 PM

    Congratulations to you and your wife, Joel. I am sure you both will be stellar parents! Focus on your family during this exciting time, as all else can wait.

    I look forward to seeing where the future leads you and your passion for writing.

    1. Joel March 3, 2022 at 5:41 PM

      Cheers Olaf! Maybe I can write a guest post for your blog one day :)

  30. Gary Grewal March 1, 2022 at 5:17 PM

    Woohoo! Becoming a new parent, I can’t imagine anything more terrifying and exciting all that the same time. This is going to be such an incredible adventure Joel, Congrats! Will definitely be wanting to know all the ins and outs of your experience, as we are thinking of adoption seriously these days as well. Keep up the great work!

    1. Joel March 3, 2022 at 5:19 PM

      That’s great to hear, and please let me know if I can help in any way. When we started the process, I began by expanding my friends circle and setting up calls with other people who had experience. When you put it out into the world, helpful people come out of the woodwork. The adoption community is extremely supportive of eachother. :)

  31. David @ Filled With Money March 2, 2022 at 10:29 PM

    All I can say is… Congratulations Joel. You are one amazing person.

    1. Joel March 3, 2022 at 5:16 PM

      Cheers David – YOU are awesome too.

  32. LadyFIRE March 3, 2022 at 8:41 AM

    Congratulations Joel, so happy for you! I’m sure you will be wonderful parents. Enjoy the time off and all the best for your family :)

    1. Joel March 3, 2022 at 5:15 PM

      Thanks Lady!!!

  33. Kathy March 12, 2022 at 2:09 PM

    Congratulations, and wishing a happy and easy transition for you and the young man.

    This gives me a lot of hope that I will get the chance to foster/adopt when I return to the US after telecommuting for 2 years from my home country because of COVID. I had already qualified and was waiting for a placement when COVID happened. Thankfully, my county confirmed that I will still be eligible when I return. I can’t wait to have the same feeling you now have.

    Again, wishing you all the best.

  34. Bret March 17, 2022 at 3:38 PM

    Huge Congrats Joel.

    Parenting is far and away the most rewarding job available.