Sunday, August 17, 2014

Liebster Award Nomination

Recently I was nominated for a Liebster Award by four very inspiring bloggers.

Thank you Happy Healthy and Wealthy Girl, Asset Grinder, Captain Dividend, and All About Interest.  I follow all of your blogs and I am impressed and amazed by the progress you guys are making in your quests for FI.  Keep up the great work!

Here are the questions from HHWG:

1. Your favorite vacation spot
I've been to Alaska twice and the scenery and wildlife is magnificent. Hopefully I will someday soon be able to vacation up there for more than just one week at a time.

2. Your first investment
I bought shares of Dell when I was in college at UT in 1994. Sadly, I sold them soon after I bought them in 1996. Yeah, that hurts looking back, but I needed the money.

3. Your best and worst investment
My house is my best investment. I bought it for $84k when I was 25 in 1997, paid it off in 2010, and still live in it today. My worst investment was buying Intel for $71 a share in the year 2000. I later sold it for $35 and was thrilled to get that. Ironically I bought Intel last year for $22 and sold it a few weeks ago for just under $35. 

4. Do you have pets?
Yes, I love animals even though they are expensive. Three dogs, two cats and numerous aquariums full of saltwater fish.

5. What will you do if you win a lottery tomorrow?
Exit the rat race immediately.

Here are the questions from Asset Grinder:

1. Whats your favorite TV show, Movie and why?
I know that I should say something like Casablanca, Gone with the Wind, Casino, or Star Wars, but no it's a good old fashioned early 70's B movie called Vanishing Point.  If you have never seen it, I highly recommend it. The car chases are badass, but the general mood of the film is about a man searching for freedom from the chaos of the world around him.  Sometimes I feel like Kowalski.

2. What sports or physical activity are you guys involved with or what do you guys do for fun?
I really love running.  There is a great sense of freedom from hitting the open road with nothing but a good pair of running shoes, a nice breeze, and a great set of tunes on my Ipod blasting away. 
3. How has your blog helped you and what have you learned from it?
I think the interaction I have had with other like-minded bloggers has been exceptional.  I really thought that I would just use the blog to record my investing progress.  I am extremely grateful for the advice, encouragement, and information I receive from the many hard working FI bloggers out there.
4. Where do u want to be in 5, 10, 20 , 50 years?
Lying in the hammock in my backyard with a cold Shiner Bock in my hand.  In 10 years I hope to living a state with four seasons.  Houston is awesome, but the heat is starting to wear on me. 20 and 50 is probably too far out to contemplate.  I think that I will be looking back at a full life with no regrets knowing that I took the road less traveled which leads to freedom.
5. What is your biggest strength and weakness in your quest for financial independence?
My biggest strength is my extreme competitiveness.  I simply hate losing.  I will do whatever it takes to reach FI soon. My weakness is my impatience, but I working on it.
Here are the questions from Captain Dividend:
1 - Why did you start your blog ?
I started this blog mainly to chronicle my journey as I fight to exit the rat race.  Seeing my decisions written down motivates me to relentlessly pursue financial independence.

2 - What is your favorite tv series ?
I don't watch much TV, but I really like the HBO series Game of  Thrones. 
3 - What was your favorite car you've ever owned ?
1999 Pontiac Trans Am.  After too many tickets and trips to the body shop, my wife told me it was time to go.
4 - What is your worst stock market or financial mishap?
My worst financial mishap was buying a lot of new cars between 1995-2000.  Nothing destroys wealth like constantly buying new cars.
5 - What if anything do you do for exercise ?
I usually run between 14-16 miles a week.  It is a great way to unwind and clear my mind.  It is hot as hell in Houston, so I usually run between 5 and 6 am. 
Here are the questions from All About Interest:
1.) Where did you grow up and do you still live there?
Houston, Texas and I still live here.

2.) What are your plans once you reach financial independence?
Really the idea of not having to plan for anything sounds wonderful.  I suspect that I will spend time reading, running, building things around the house, playing guitar, cooking, and generally enjoying the small things in life that I have missed over the last 20 years.

3.) What was your best/worst financial decision?
I consider my house my best financial decision, because I bought an inexpensive house and stayed in it.  My worst financial decision was buying too many new cars between 1995 and 2000.

4.) What is your favorite part about investing?
I love the fact that I am building my dreams and not someone elses.

5.) Who’s your biggest idol and why?
My mom.  I know it sounds cheesy, but she really encouraged me to dream big and instilled a competive drive in me while growing up.  She hated seeing wasted potential and encouraged me to tackle things outside my comfort zone.

 And now for my nominees....

Accumulating Assets  I stumbled upon AA's blog a while back and thought THAT is the way I want to invest....RELENTLESS!!! The amount of capital he has been investing over the past several years is jaw dropping.  I have patterned my own investing habits after his and believe me it is a kickass method.

Dividend Growth Journey  DGJ in on a quest to build passive income through dividend growth investing.  I love the aggressive goals and portfolio additions.

A Frugal Family's Journey  I have found AFFJ to be very encouraging and has a great blog.  The collection of stock analyses is awesome and very informative.  If you haven't been over to see it, I highly recommend it.

DivHut  If you are looking for very informative analysis on a vast array of dividend stocks, this is the place to go.  I am constantly finding great little nuggets of info that quite honestly isn't available anywhere else I look.  Check it out!

Living A FI  While not a dividend growth investor, he is on the verge of FI and has a fantastic blog.  It's like Office Space in blog form. His work stories are hilarious.  Also he has done some amazing FIRE calc scenarios that everyone should really take a close look at as they prepare for their own FI.

So here are the questions I would like to ask...

1. If you could retire with ONLY 5 dividend stock in your portfolio what would they be?  (Here is the cannot choose JNJ, KO, CVX, XOM, or PG)

2. What is the most important thing you would do in your first month of early retirement that you can't do now because of your job commitments?

3. Mentally, how do you prepare for a massive stock market correction/collapse like we experienced in 2007-2009?

4. What one major sacrifice will you make next year to accelerate your FI plans?

5. If you decided to open your own business today, what kind of business would it be?



  1. great answers buddy. Will have to check out Vanishing point! I love good old flicks

    1. AG,

      Vanishing Point is a cult movie that I have always loved. There is very little dialogue and the main character is basically a white 1970 Dodge Challenger RT. Tarrantino recently paid tribute to the movie in his movie Death Proof.

  2. Great answers and thanks for sharing. I'm not a runner, I'd rather bike.

    1. Tawcan,

      After a injuring my ankle recently, I could see myself biking in the future. I love the convenience of running and can't wait to get back out on the road.


  3. Great answers. These awards have been fun to read. Keep up the good work!

    1. Brent,

      Thanks buddy. I have enjoyed the answers as well.

      Take care,


  4. thanks for answering my questions. you surely have lots of pets! do you own any pets stocks?

    1. HHWG,

      No problem, I enjoyed answering all the questions. I don't own any pet stocks, but we do invest heavily in Petco every month ;-)


  5. And what would your answer be to the "pick 5" be?