Grant Baldwin, FinCon 2015

Weekly Pain & Gain: FinCon +


So I just wanted to let you know that I’m sorry I’ve fallen off my consistent posting schedule. agh! I was doing so good too. Lately I missed a lot of posts, which sucks because it was my goal to have 1 post a week . It’s my fault I fell off the horse.

But below is the reason why.

Excuses, Excuses , Excuses

I recently attended FinCon  ( financial bloggers conference) for the first time and what can I say I needed some time to recoup and make up for all the family time I missed.

Also I needed to make time to process all the info that I got at the conference. It was awesome but also very overwhelming. I have to make a game plan because when I attend next year I want there to be big change.

Which leads me to…

What’s on the Horizon

I have been thinking about doing a slight pivot on the blog. ( Foolishly I totally forgot to get some opinions from all the clever people at the conference) but I have lots of work to do to spiff up the blog.

Why change?

Well its really suppose to be to improve the reader experience. So that means its for you. And any future readers.

The layout of the blog will be changing but that won’t happen for a while .

Also it appears I need to clarify what it is we do here. I’ll be honest it’s about my journey and what I value and is important to me.

Which naturally means topics could morph as I grow and my families situation changes. But the main topics will be family/ parenting, travel, and finance.

And with that it’s time to put my nose to the grindstone. I’ve been slacking, I have to admit it. I have to fight for my dreams, they aren’t going to fall in my lap. I wish it were all about numbers and money. For some reason that comes easy to me.

But finding how to communicate and identify a value that people really actually need … That’s something else.


Talking about FinCon, it wasn’t all overload. Actually when it comes to the check book it was pretty darn good.

When I first did my math, I was pretty dissatisfied with how much this whole thing was going to cost. I mean when you compare it to an 8 day 4 person family vacation and come out at the same cost its hard not to be disappointed.

I had the total cost at $1404.82 for 1 person for FinCon . And that wasn’t including transportation  or food for the 4 days.

Fortunately the total cost of the trip currently clocks in at  $1202.76 which will drop further to $1078 once the last roomie payment clears.

So how did I drop the initial cost ?

Well I hustled and found 1 roommate (cha-ching $$) who help find another 2 ($$). So that $515 for 3 nights was sliced by having 3 other amazing ladies stay in the same room. Each of us only payed a quarter of the price. It was win win and it was so much fun.

Another way I cut costs was I used the bus.

I’ve never been shy around public transportation because I grew up in LA and we used it regularly. But after going away to college in a city were  everything was dangerous it had been a while since I had ridden a bus, specially alone. Thankfully the positive bus experience I had with Mr. Roamer last year set me up to courageously try out the transit in Charlotte.

The bus cost a meer $2.20 each way and that was all the transportation needs I had. After that I simply walked.

I had an amazing time at FinCon and I’m happy I came back with a small gain through lowering my initial costs.

Another gain that happened this week specifically was having an eye opening conversation. A conversation that was educational and enlightening in dismantling misconceptions.

I had an amazing conversation with a Persian coworker. Did you know that most Persians would now be called Iranians? I sure didn’t.

I had never thought of that, and as soon as I made the connection I felt the twinge of something. Deep down, Danger? Distrust? Negative feelings for sure. I recognized it right away but he and I were still talking so I noted it but moved on quickly.

We continued talking.

He talked about his country and all the great stuff about it. He jumped on Google and showed me pictures, I asked about the weather, does it snow? He said yes, there are mountains and pulled up a picture.

I was amazed as I noted a quick passage of another thought. Deserts this doesn’t look like just deserts. Then he brought it up. “I don’t know why everyone thinks its all just deserts and camels.”

And I said yes!!! ( wish you could see my face) that is exactly what I was thinking.  And then we talked about the media and its part in painting a whole country as one very narrow thing. It was an amazing conversation. and I left it excited to add Persia / Iran to my want to go places.

The conversation did get a bit emotional as he spoke of the government and its poor performance ( to put it lightly). The country and people as a whole he was all gush!

It’s amazing how one conversation can break down barriers. All those negative thoughts that popped in my head, they have been challenged and now I can see another perspective. People are always talking about moving out of your comfort zone. This is great way to do that. Go TALK to someone about where they’re from….

Ha-ha honestly can’t remember how conversation started… Oh no wait now I do… He kept saying Persia and I kept thinking I don’t think Persia is a country anymore… Finally I just asked.

What Pains and Gains have you experienced lately? If you went to FinCon how was it?

The Roamer traveling wallet




6 thoughts on “Weekly Pain & Gain: FinCon +”

  1. Can’t wait to see how your site develops. I know several Persians/Iranians and it’s always interesting to see their perspective. Many were kids when they came to the US to seek a safer place to live. But I love hearing about their history. My mom was an air force brat and they were stationed in the middle east a couple of times and she describes it as being beautiful. My pain is my arm getting burned, and a difficult client I work with who is my bread and butter client. So my motivation is to find other clients and situations to sustain me as a freelancer.

    1. Wow that’s so interesting. I didn’t know that about your family.
      He has been here a meer 2 years and is in his late 40s maybe. So everything is still fresh for him.

      That sucks about your arm and also I read about the delays in payments , I hope that clears up soon.

  2. I hope you got a lot out of FinCon. It’s a blast every year. And next year you can spend less because, as a now FinCon-veteran, you should’ve gotten a chance at extra early bird specials. Or, at the very least, you can jump on the early bird special pricing next year.

    And yes, blogs evolve. When I started mine, we were living on $3,000 a month, with $1,200 going to rent/insurance, and trying to pay down debt. Now I have a job, our only debt is a mortgage, and lots of other ways our financial situation is very different. People check out blogs not just for ideas or tips but to follow the writers’ journeys.

    1. I did now I just need to act before the leads get cold. 🙂

      And the super early bird tickets were a great surprise! I was like no wonder people keep coming back its cheaper the 2nd time around. Ha-ha I know its more then that.

  3. I’m glad you’re finding your voice. The world needs people who make numbers and money easy for them, but we also need a world of context for those numbers. At least, that’s my opinion.

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