With the start of a brand new year, I think its the perfect time to share some “interesting” facts about me that you might not know. After all, if we are going to walk this journey to financial freedom together, its best we get a bit more familiar with each other.
1- I was a gymnast
From the age of about 8 to 17, I was a gymnast. I competed up to level 7, which wasn’t quite the Olympic level, but for me, it was very challenging. Think double back hand-springs, back tucks, back walkovers on the balance beam, etc. Gymnastics provided me with the discipline, mental and physical toughness that shapes who I am today.
2. I bought my first property at 22
This has been my greatest investment and “financial move” to date. I purchased my condo in the DUMBO section of Brooklyn, which is now considered one of the most expensive places to own real estate in NYC. I’ve had a couple offers to buy the condo, which I have turned down. It’s not just a financial investment for me, it’s also an emotional investment. I don’t want to give up my small piece of the American Pie. Owning it makes me feel accomplished and if I sold it, I’m not sure that I would be able to ever buy in the area again due to the high cost of real estate. I’m saving the condo as our retirement pad if we downsize from our current house or something to pass down to our children.
3. I have 2 kids
…& they are my world. Like seriously, my heart beats for my two boys. Out of all the things I have ever done and will ever do in my life, they are my greatest accomplishments. When I feel unmotivated or am struggling with what the right thing to do is, I always ask myself, “What advice would I give them?” & “What would I want them to do in this moment?”.
4. I have my Master’s Degree in Real Estate from NYU
While working for a few years at my corporate job, I decided that I would go back to school and pursue my Masters in Real Estate in order to be prepared for better job opportunities once they became available. Also, my company paid for 90% of my degree, so it was a no brainer. Once I graduated, my dream position opened up and I applied for and got it. I don’t think I would’ve ever been considered for the job if it had not been for my graduate degree, so it was an investment that paid off almost immediately.
5. I have been with my husband for 14 years (married for 4 years)
Although we are both grew up in Brooklyn, my husband and I never met until we went to college in Long Island. We didn’t go to the same schools but I was at his campus so much that people thought I went there. We have been able to grow together through our most formative years and still continue to evolve together. He is literally my best friend and biggest support system. He also edits my posts, so if you see any grammatical errors, blame him! (sorry babe).
6. I’ve worked for the same company for 11 years and commute 3-4 hours a day by car
I interned for my company throughout college through a program called INROADS (an internship program that helped minorities get paid internships at Fortune 500 companies). I was offered a full-time job before I went back to finish my senior year in college. While I often say my corporate job is not my forever goal, working for this company has afforded me the opportunity to invest and save. The one thing that I dislike most about my job is my extremely long commute. I do make the best of it by listening to podcasts and audiobooks while driving.
7. We have no debt (other than the mortgage)
We have paid for our cars with cash, paid off our student loans, and all other debt while on the journey to launch to financial independence. We do use credit cards, which we pay off every month for free travel. We would like to pay off the primary mortgage in 7 years, which you can read more about here.
8. I used to run an online magazine and had a failed vending machine business
My best friend and I started Empress Magazine while we were in college. It was a lifestyle magazine for young women of color and we ran it for almost 7 years. I also started a vending machine business which seemed like a good idea at the time but ended up failing (I promise to write a post on these two topics one day).
9. Being social doesn’t come natural to me
I am an introvert at heart and love just being alone and staying within my comfort zone. Hence, the reason I have been at my job for so long. It is one of things I am working to improve upon. The book, Daring Greatly, by Brene Brown has encouraged me to embrace my vulnerability and put myself out there more, something that is necessary if you want to be a successful entrepreneur.
10. I was an avid crossfitter
…and worked out the entire 9 months of my first pregnancy. I had to stop once I discovered I had developed diastis recti (separation of my abs) after giving birth to my first son. I’m hoping to get back into it but want to heal my core first. I even shot a fancy crossfit video while pregnant by a production company that was never released and I was also featured in the February/March 2015 issue of Fit Pregnancy (that’ me on the far right below in the first picture below).
So there you have it, 10 “Interesting” facts about me. Comment below and let me know 1 or 2 interesting things about yourself and lets get to know each other better.
Reimbursed masters degrees are the best! I got the majority of my degree reimbursed too. It was so nice to avoid graduate school debt. Also, your #10 blew my mind! Good for you! My husband is a strength coach so I’ve been trying hard to stay motivated in the gym so we can workout together. Consistency in training is one of my goals for 2017!
Julie, the funny thing about it is that when I started my degree , my company paid for 100% of the program , then when I had 2 semesters left , they changed the policy and no longer reimbursed as much. Luckily, I was aggressive with my schedule and knocked most of the classes out. But I had to pay out of pocket last minute to finish my degree.
That’s so cool your husband is a strength coach. My husband is a workout fanatic too . I really miss crossfit but my stomach is all out of wack since having babies so I have to heal it first. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!
A very enjoyable post to read! It’s great to get to get to know you a little better, and see how you stay so fancy:)
Thank you! There’s nothing wrong with being fab AND Frugal at the same time!
I am thinking about getting a vending machine. Why did it not work out for you?
We overpaid for them and it was just too much of a hassle to replenish the materials. I think it’s an excellent business model if you can get them at a good price, find a good location and have someone on call or are handy enough to fix them when they break.