Money is just money. It took me until I was 19 years old to figure that out. I have been making money since I was 5 years old when I started lemonade stands, clubs, and did regular theater performances in my living room. At the time, all I knew was money was something my parents used. Like most kids I was eager to be a grown up.

Fast forward to when I was 19 years old, had worked at every place imaginable, and often held down 2-3 jobs at one time, all while going to school and attempting to maintain a normal social life. I often said no to dinner or lunch with friends, so I could save money or take on another job.

It was the summer before my 20th birthday when I realized that if I died tomorrow I would have some major regrets. So I cashed in on the $25k I had hoarded (and I mean hoarded) and booked trips to Thailand, Europe, and Australia. I spent the summer traveling the world and making memories to last a lifetime. What I learned that summer was worth far more than the $25k that would have just sat in the bank for the years.

In my many travels, I learned ways to make my money stretch. I stayed in hostels instead of hotels, ate creative meals, and learned how to haggle prices in every country I visited. These frugal skills translated back into my everyday life. I started this blog to share what I have learned, and help others turn their money into pursuing their dreams. I am now 27 years old, own two homes, have two degrees, and have been to over 30 countries. Follow The Frugal Diaries and you too can live the life you want.

Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience.

—Paulo Coelho