Posts Tagged ‘saving’

Why Many Americans Are Becoming Minimalists!

In Your Guest Writers on February 20, 2011 at 10:15 PM

(And how you can too)

By: Jennifer Brown Banks



Image Credit Somedarkson



“Sometimes less is more”.

If nothing can be said of a tough economy and uncertain times, it’s certainly causing us to reassess our lives and redefine what it is that we value. True? Prosper perspective is crucial for survival and optimal quality of life.

‘Dem days of living high on the hog, keeping up with the Joneses, and making bold risks have gone bye-bye like eight track tapes and “free love “ in the ’60s.

As a case in point, I was surfing the Net and saw where quite a few folks were constructing and living in what are called “Tiny Homes” now. These structures, that are a mere fraction of the size of your typical American Dream, are said to “house” just as much joy for those that own them. Not to mention, they cost less comparatively in many cases, and prevent the possibility of over indulgence and hoardering.

With this being said, here are some factors to consider if you’re contemplating this lifestyle choice in the future.


  1. Our parents survived on less, and in many cases were just as fulfilled. In former generations, many didn’t have cable TV, or Internet or fast food conveniences.
  2. Minimalism typically means less debt.
  3. Less debt leads to less stress. Less stress can lead to longer longevity and better health.
  4. Having an attitude of materialism and defining ourselves through our possessions is unhealthy and unrealistic. As we have seen through world events, our status can change with one act of God or misfortune.
  5. Stream-lined living and proper focus can cause us to spend more time with family and friends,  develop and sustain important bonds and relationships, and cultivate cherished memories.


A wise person once said, “You don’t have to have everything, to have everything you need.” Food for thought.

Jennifer Brown Banks is a veteran freelance writer, Columnist, and Pro Blogger.  You can find her work at  Pen and Prosper, Coffeehouse for Writer’s and


Meet Photographer Malissa Sisson

In You on March 21, 2010 at 7:26 PM

Welcome to You!

We’ve added a new page to your magazine called You and it’s literally all about You, our readers.   We know how hectic life can sometimes get and we appreciate you taking time to visit our site.  To show our appreciation, we created this page so that we and your fellow readers could meet, chat a bit, network, and get to know each other.  We love talking with our readers, even though most of our conversations and interviews take place electronically.  Click here for more information on being featured in You


Malissa and Jon

First Up – Meet Photographer Malissa Sisson

 Good Morning Malissa.  Thank you for taking time to sit down with Live Well For Less.  You are our first reader “interviewee” and we’re pretty excited about the opportunity to visit with you.

Tell us a little about yourself and your family.

My husband and I have seven children and three grandchildren.  They range in age from 27-7.  Our granddaughter will be three in May and our grandsons are 18 months and two months.

 We understand you are a photographer.  How did you become interested in photography?

When I was a little girl my parents were very interested in photography.  We had a dark room in our home.  I really enjoyed spending time with my parents printing images.  I became much more interested over the years as I photographed my children. 

Michaela, daughter and Gabriella, granddaughter

What types of subjects do you shoot?

I do children, maternity, engagement, wedding, pets and families.

There are many types of cameras on the market, what equipment do you use?

My camera, lens and flash are all Canon.  My studio lights are Alien Bees.

What do you like best about your job and what do you find most challenging?

The thing I like best about my job is spending time with the children that I photograph.  The most challenging is trying to keep newborns awake long enough to get a few good shots and making teenage boys smile.

Jaxson, grandson

What advice do you have for women who are thinking about becoming photographers?

My best advice is to go for it!  Don’t let anyone convince you that you can’t do it.  Do your homework so you know what you are doing and have fun!

Where can our readers find your work? 

On my website, Treasured Reflections: and my Facebook also has some of my work.

How does your family Live Well For Less?

One way that I stretch our budget is when I find items on sale that we use on a regular basis, I stock up.  Another way is that we rarely throw away our leftovers.  You would be surprised how much money you save by bringing home leftovers from a restaurant and saving the small portions that are uneaten for meals at home.  Using those for lunch instead of cooking something is going to add up in a significant savings over time. Finally, a really good way to stretch your budget is by learning to tell your children “No, you don’t need that.”, when you are at the store and they want nearly everything they see! 

Any closing remarks?           

I have a lot to learn about photography and I am looking forward to exploring all of the different aspects of the art.  

We’ve had a really great time chatting with you Malissa.  Thank you!