Bennetts & Company

Life Lately

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It’s been another week. How does that keep happening? Time flies, especially in the summer. A lot of what I’m working on and thinking about right now involves travel because work is relatively slow at the moment and I finally feel like I have some breathing space to get that done. I think I’ve also been thinking about work a lot because its STILL raining in Indiana. Every day. Woof.

I always try to read a book about or set in a place while I’m there. For example, a book about Italy while I’m in Italy, a book set in New York while I’m in New York. Brian’s been burning through books lately and just finished one up on Turkey which is convenient for my upcoming trip, he’s recommended this book by Roger Crowley. We’ll see if my short attention span can handle it. If you have any recommendations for books about or set in Turkey, please send them.

Crowley book


The master bedroom make-over has officially begun! We primed the walls yesterday and painted today. We ended up going with a Benjamin Moore color called White Sands. I won’t lie, right now White Sands is feeling a little too yellow. I narrowed it down to seven colors, half super dark and half super light. We lived with swatches of color all over the walls for three weeks and ended up going with….NONE of them. I’m going on record here – Brian didn’t like my paint swatches so I let him pick a new color. Now here we are. Before you cast judgement on the original color in the photo below, click over to the Master Bedroom mood board post or the post about where we started in the old house to understand why the room was that gray color to begin with. And also – let’s just not be judgy here. Let’s all just be happy for each other that we’re getting fun projects done!

paint swatches

This was the original set of options we started with and didn’t end up using any of.

  1. Benjamin Moore Cedar Key (my fave and I might use this tonight to repaint the room while B is out of town)
  2. Benjamin Moore Timid White
  3. Benjamin Moore Elephant Tusk
  4. Benjamin Moore Yorktowne Green
  5. Benjamin Moore Hale Navy (another color from the CLJ House)
  6. Benjamin Moore Knoxville Gray
  7. Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal


I need to schedule an appointment with my travel doctor in preparation for Turkey which I cannot believe is less than three months away. Anyone else see a travel doctor before going someplace far away? We started doing it before our trip to Africa and I’m telling you what – it makes a world of difference as far as peace of mind and feeling in control of health and safety on a big trip to a potentially scary place. Ours provides us with a little folder with embassy numbers and travel warnings, food information (what not to eat, what’s always a safe bet.),information on vaccinations, information on Visas, anything you could hope for. Apparently, these docs are often tied to Occupational Health practices because so many people go on international trips for business purposes. Ours is and he’s great. If you’re in the Indy area, check out Dr. Jeffrey Jones. He’s affiliated with Franciscan.

I’m currently struggling a lot with unwinding from work in the evenings. For me, this results in insomnia, lack of motivation to work out, the need to sit in a quiet room and be alone when I would rather spend the evening with my friends and family. I work in software so generally speaking, it’s not earth shattering stuff. No one will die if I don’t get everything from my to-do list done each day. My biggest problem is that I am emotionally attached to my work and I internalize it when I am unable to accomplish all of the things I set out to do. Any book recommendations, apps, meditations, or general life strategies that are helpful in this area would be much appreciated!

In an attempt to rejuvenate the old house without spending oodles of money, I’m taking a tip from all the fun and awesome home renovation bloggers out there and I’m going to try to “renew” my grout using this product. According to what I’ve read, you just kind of paint it onto the old grout with a toothbrush or paintbrush and let it dry, then wipe it down and your grout is like new. I got two colors, Alabaster and Smoke. One is for my half bath downstairs and one is for a full bath upstairs. I’ll post before and afters and let you know how easy the project really is.

Saving for retirement is so important to me and I have been thinking about it a lot lately. Possibly because of the extra stress I’ve been feeling but possibly because another birthday is creeping up on me. Another year older, another savings milestone to meet. Do you set retirement savings milestones for yourself? I set savings goals every year and according to the planners and calculators online, we’re on track to retire by our early 60s. But wouldn’t it be nice to retire sooner? There are so many ways to approach it and I’m so intriqued by people who manage to save up a million bucks by their mid-30s and live off the residual income from their investments for years to come. Is this something you’d be interested in hearing more about? Does anyone know of a blogger that retired early through real estate investment?

  • Jason Fieber of ,  also known as Mr. Free at 33, (he used to have another blog name that he sold) has always intriqued me. He worked a regular job making a regular salary and was able to live what I would consider an extreme frugal lifestyle for a few years to rack up investments in a diversified portfolio of companies that pay high dividends. Now, he lives mainly off those dividends and just works on what seem like passion projects such as his blog and some books he’s written. He recently moved overseas and is pretty much living a dream lifestyle, except my dream retirement would involve my dogs.
  • Mr. Money Mustache is a classic. He has “retired” using the same basic concepts of living a frugal lifestyle while investing his money, but he invests mainly in one index fund. It still pays dividends that he lives off of, but he eats organic stuff and lives in a very fancy house. His version of frugal is very different from Jason’s but probably more “mainstream”.  He lives in Colorado in a fairly expensive area near Boulder but makes it work.


Hope you’re having a great week!



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