Hi, I’m Beth!
I was born and raised in the Midwest. These days I can’t get enough time snuggling my son Benjamin. I love crafting, going for walks with my furbaby, Roscoe, enjoying a nightly bowl of ice cream with my husband, and I have recently become super passionate about paying off (student loan) debt I accrued over the past 10 years. Welcome to The Frugal Dietitian!
I created this blog for so many reasons, however, the main reasons are:
1) to help people like myself get out of debt and prevent them from ever getting in as much debt as I did
2) to share everything I’ve learned about my unique passion of practicing dietetics and nutrition from a Health At Every Size perspective. What is Health At Every Size you ask? Follow along and I will tell you everything I know 🙂
I’m also a Certified Lactation Consultant and love the rewarding work of helping moms be able to feed their babies the best nutrition we have for them!
As for my money story:
My money story started in college when I first started racking up credit card and student loan debt. I graduated college in 2013 and started a full-time job as a Quality Assurance Process Improvement Specialist. I could’ve easily put a huge dent in my student loans with my GREAT starting salary, >$55K.
However, like so many others commonly do, I lived paycheck to paycheck because of lifestyle inflation.
After being promoted to a Team Manager position and deciding that factory life was not for me, in mid 2017, I committed to return to school to finish my dietetic internship and finish my RD (Registered Dietitian) credential.
During my internship, I was referred to The Money Nerds Podcast by a fellow RD. I loved the content and listened to it, nonstop. It seemed like I was always too busy traveling to take action though. Soon after starting the podcast, I heard an episode by Gwen and J and started listening to their podcast, FIRE Drill, meaning Financial Independence Retire Early. Everyone talked about at least having an emergency savings account and being free of consumer credit card debt before investing. I didn’t have any of these things. So when I landed my first job as a Registered Dietitian at Hy-Vee in 2018 while expecting my first baby, I knew I had to start getting my finances in order.
I only had $500 to my name, 81K of student loan debt from a Bachelor’s and Masters Degree and about 3K consumer credit card debt. The amount of debt I had was suffocating.
I took action by:
- creating a budget
- setting aside a specific amount of money to go into my savings
- paying extra on my credit card
- selling STUFF I didn’t need
In one year (my lowest income year 2018 interestingly enough), I managed to pay off my $3,000 consumer credit debt, save $4,000 for an emergency fund, and my new student loan debt total was under $75,000. (See my Debt Thermometer for current total).
Fast forward to 2020 and I’ve built up my emergency fund to 15K, have paid off 25K in debt, and have a surplus of money from my budget every month.
My goal for the next two years (when we plan to add another two little feet to the family) is to expand my side hustles to replace my full-time income and slash my student loan debt in half to be able to stay at home at least part-time with both my babies!