Book Review

  • Book Review

    Life Admin Hacks: Book Review

    How to Save Time, Money and Energy Simplifying Life Admin

    Most families are overwhelmed with the amount of life admin we all have. Bills, appointments, activities, birthdays, car maintenance and so on. The list of what needs to be done and when is long. This is where Life Admin Hacks can help. 

    Disclosure: this post may contain affiliate links.

    While deciding on books to read to improve my life, I saw Life Admin Hacks and was curious how much time, money and mental headspace it could save me. Reading it, I already did some things but there was definitely room for improvement in our home. 

    Life Admin Hacks Overview

    A step by step guide to save time and money, reduce the mental load and streamline your life, Life Admin Hacks is a great read for anyone. Each chapter outlines steps to take to drastically change your life admin. 

    What is Life Admin?

    All those tasks that have to be done from booking the dentist to doing your tax. Our lives are full of tasks and many of these we try to squeeze in between everything or we expect to be able to remember it all, which simply is not possible. 

    Sometimes a calendar will be up in the house but most of us don’t use it properly plus that relies on the whole family reading it. More often than not, all these little tasks get dumped on mum. 

    Random reminder emails, text messages, mail, all of it has to be sorted, paid for, booked in and remembered. With so much happening, it can be easy to miss things which can cost you money. Trying to juggle it all is stressful and costs us time.

    What Does Life Admin Hacks Cover?

    I was genuinely amazed at how thorough they are in Life Admin Hacks covering everything from doctors appointments through to Christmas. Every area of your budget, every area of your life you have to make a decision for, it is all covered.

    Each chapter covers a section, outlines what to do and has a guide about how much time/money etc it will save you. Plus at the end of the chapter there is a handy SOS list with the steps of what to do in a short format.

    Life Admin Hacks is the sort of book that is easy to read and easy to implement. Make sure you take the time to do each thing as you read about it or you will forget.

    As such, this is the sort of book you need to dedicate time for. Even 10 minutes at a time will often be enough to read the chapter and implement at least some of the tips immediately to make your life run smoother.

    What did I Implement from Life Admin Hacks?

    With 4 kids, our life can be hectic and it is always left to me to book everything, do the budget, organise our lives etc. It gets exhausting especially as I also do the bulk of the childcare, run a business and do other things. 

    As I said, some of it I already did but it was good to get a reminder and the other tips were great to implement. 

    Digital Calendar

    I semi did this for a few years but no one else used it properly and I didn’t always remember to add everything in. By scheduling things in properly and reminding the family to use it, admin tasks got a lost easier. 

    Form Data List

    I don’t know why I didn’t think of this before. All those details we get asked for forms in one place makes forms so much easier to do. When I was processing Mr Aspiring Millionaire’s residency visa I had a few files like this as there was so much we had to do that felt repetitive. 

    It was fantastic having a file with all the details from our passports, licences and qualifications through to tax file numbers and more. Every time I had to complete a form or do a call it was all easy to find. 

    For some reason, even though I did it for the visa, I didn’t think to apply it to the rest of my life. Now I have, it has reduced a lot of the time I wasted looking for these details. 

    Book Everything In Advance

    I used to do this for everything from my standing beautician appointment to my car service. Every time I did one appointment, I booked the next. In the case of monthly appointments such as my beautician, I’d book the year in advance because I liked my beautician. Occasionally I had to reschedule but that was rare.

    With the car service, I’d book for 6 months so I knew it would be taken care of. Also, with my driving, road trips and things, I usually did 10,000kms in that time.

    Having these appointments locked in made it easy to budget and I didn’t have to remember to book them as they were done ahead of time.

    Time Blocking

    Years ago, when it was my older two kids and I, time blocking was my friend. Monday to Friday when they were at school, I had coffee with a friend every morning then worked the rest of the day. Saturdays was cleaning, yardwork etc. Sundays I cooked, a lot. I made muffins for school lunches and used up whatever we had to make things such as soup for the freezer on those nights I didn’t want to cook.

    Monday, Wednesday and Friday I had gym or dance class. Once a month I went to the beautician. Every morning I had 2 hours blocked to meditate, journal, get ready etc. Basically, do my billionaire morning routine with 1 hour of it being yoga and meditation.

    Once we started travelling full time then when I got pregnant with my son and soon after another daughter, things changed. My time blocking disappeared completely.

    Bringing it back has been amazing. Sunday nights we have an abundance meeting (budget meeting), Monday mornings I dedicate an hour to any and all paperwork, phone calls, booking appointments etc.

    These two changes alone have been amazing. Everything else, such as my work, beauty routine etc has to be juggled around the kids, their activities and nap time right now. That will change once I have a 7 seater car and some childcare.

    Is Life Admin Hacks Worth it?

    Honestly, I didn’t think I would learn much but now, I think everyone needs to read and apply all of it. It’s THE best guide you can find to streamline your life, gain back hours of your time and be more organised. Reduce your mental load and spend more time focused on things you enjoy by reading and applying Life Admin Hacks.

    Not a lot of books make my “must read” list. Life Admin Hacks is one I will be recommending to everyone.

  • Book Review

    We Should All Be Millionaires: Book Review

    We Should All Be Millionaires is a Must-Read Book for Everyone

    With BIPOC daughters, this hit home for us. We Should All Be Millionaires provides an incredible mix of statistics, history and advice. The world is changing and thank goodness it is. We are better positioned than ever before but too many women are underselling themselves, undervaluing themselves and still carry the bulk of the work in the home.

    Here is what we learnt and loved about We Should All Be Millionaires by Rachel Rodgers.

    Disclosure: this post may contain affiliate links.

    Broke Ass Decisions vs Million Dollar Decisions

    Every day we make multiple decisions. They might not seem like much but each one will either take us closer to millions or further away. What is a Broke Ass Decision (aka BAD)? Doing everything yourself instead of outsourcing. Choosing not to push for a pay rise, choosing not to negotiate your wage, putting others needs before your own, building your partners career instead of your own etc.

    For years, women have been made to sit on the sidelines, do everything and taught they need to support their husbands/other people instead of focusing on themselves. Because of this, many of us feel uncomfortable or selfish for going after our own goals, building our own career or business and putting our needs first.

    How many men do you know that stop to think, should I do this? Or who put their partners career and lifestyle before their own? They are few and far between. More often than not, the woman is juggling it all while trying to build her life. As a result, many of us make Broke Ass Decisions because we don’t see our value or we were taught being a stay at home mum/helping others/putting others first was more important.

    You deserve to have a career and live a life you love. Whatever your goals and dreams are, you deserve to pursue them.

    Struggling With Outsourcing?

    Mr and Ms Aspiring Millionaire were both raised in heavily religious homes where the woman is supposed to have the babies and care for them. Constantly being told it is our responsibility to “multiply and replenish the earth” aka breed like crazy. As well as women should be stay at home mums, men are to provide etc. It made it hard for us to see a different way.

    Interestingly, the idea of having a housegirl (someone to help) is common in Vanuatu. Mr Aspiring Millionaire grew up with that but the cost was tiny in Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands compared to Australia. For Ms Aspiring Millionaire, the pressure to be the one to raise the kids and be a stay at home mum was intense. She was single for a long time and the sole provider for her kids but still had the pressure to do it all and be there for them consistently.

    Rachel Rodgers helps blow this out of the water. By outlining how expensive it is to do everything yourself, it was an eye-opener for Ms Aspiring Millionaire. While she has outsourced at times, she always felt guilty, especially when it came to the kids.

    How to Outsource and Why You Should!

    In We Should All Be Millionaires, Rachel Rodgers lists all the things most stay at home mums do or most women do around the home and the value. Most homes have an extremely uneven share of household responsibilities. When you are responsible for thinking about and doing everything from cooking and shopping through to all the appointments, managing anything that needs to be fixed as well as the cleaning etc. You end up emotionally, mentally and physically drained.

    Being in that state does not allow room for growth. How can you do your best at work or in your business and grow the family finances if you are wiped out from doing everything.

    Household manages get paid upwards of $100,000 a year. Where we live, a nanny would cost $30hr, more for overnight. Personal chefs, cleaners, gardeners all cost. This is the value of a stay at home parent (usually mum). But what if you flipped it?

    Ms Aspiring Millionaire has a high earning capacity. Because of the pressure to be the stay at home mum and be there for the kids, she has never worked to her full potential. A few years ago, she did outsource and got help with childcare, cleaning and gardening. This help enabled her to run a company, increase her income, save and be able to provide.

    Having that financial stability ensured the time spent with the kids was quality time.

    Outsourcing frees up your time and mind. With more time, you can earn more and you can spend more fun time with the family. It isn’t selfish or stupid. It’s essential.

    All wealthy families outsource what they can such as cleaning, gardening, some child care, ironing etc.

    List the tasks you don’t want to do then start outsourcing them.

    Dream Big

    We loved the examples of self made millionaires. Having watched Madam CJ Walker’s story on Netflix, the Aspiring Millionaire kids were already motivated. We Should All Be Millionaires has more examples of self-made millionaires but especially ones who are people of colour.

    There is no reason you cannot dream big and work towards it. If you are reading this, you were probably born in the USA, Australia or the UK. You were born into privilege and have more options available to you than most of the world. So use your privilege and improve your life. Dream big. You deserve it!

    Image: Cover of We Should All Be Millionaires and Book Review

    What we are Changing as a Result of We Should All Be Millionaires

    Mr Aspiring Millionaire spent his first marriage working, doing the bulk of the cooking etc while fully supporting his wife’s career. Her career came before anything else and she was away for up to a year at a time studying and pursuing her goals. He is one of the rare ones in this sense.

    Ms Aspiring Millionaire achieved great success as a single mother. Her first marriage was abusive, she was not allowed to have goals, dreams and grow. Upon leaving, she changes drastically. During the custody battle, which took 7.5 years, her ex husband used her career and success against her in court, causing her to shrink again.

    Together, Mr and Ms Aspiring Millionaire have the same life goals. They each have their own careers they are pursuing and do what they can to enable each other to reach their goals within those careers. Housework such as cooking, cleaning etc is split fairly evenly but every now and then, too much falls onto Ms Aspiring Millionaire’s shoulders.

    So here is what is changing as a result of this book.

    Proper Work Time for Ms Aspiring Millionaire

    Having always worked from home, the proper work hours were not always outlined. Instead, Ms Aspiring Millionaire squeezed her work in around everyone else. As a result, her income stalled. Now, set hours have been established and the kids have been informed not to disturb her.

    A Nanny/Help Around the House

    We are looking at hiring one in a few months. If we were in Vanuatu or the Solomon Islands, we’d have one already. Once Ms Aspiring Millionaire goes to full time work hours, child care options will be employed so she can work. Our youngest is only 5 months so we aren’t moving on this immediately but it is a definite and is being budgeted in.

    Family Calendar

    A Google calendar was set up with the meals, who is cooking, date nights, family activities and everything else. This has reduced what Ms Aspiring Millionaire has to remember and reduced the amount of questions about who is doing what and when. All family members can see from their own devices when Mum is working, when different sports are happening, what family activities are planned and when friends might be able to come over.

    More Defined Goals

    Our goals are clear with some things such as the next step in careers, the dream home etc. However, some of it was wishy washy. Now, we have clearer goals for every member of the family and a more even split with responsibility for various tasks so we can all achieve our personal and family goals.


    This is one of the best finance books we’ve read in a long time. It gave us the kick up the butt we needed to make changes, it educated our daughters and is a book we would recommend to everyone. Check out We Should All Be Millionaires and let us know what you think.

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  • Book Review

    Quit Like A Millionaire Book Review

    Why you need to read Quit Like A Millionaire

    Everyone I know has dreamt of winning the lotto, becoming a millionaire, quitting their job and living the life they want. Instead of dreaming about the lotto, why not make it happen for yourself? This is exactly what author, Kristy Shen did and she shares how in Quit Like A Millionaire.

    Disclosure, this post may contain affiliate links.

    General Thoughts On Quit Like A Millionaire

    The basis is Kristy Shen’s life story mixed with finance tips. A poverty stricken background, emphasis on education, good career, extreme frugality and investing wisely are all outlined.

    We quite enjoyed it but I suspect that is because the background was so familiar. Most of what Mrs Aspiring Millionaire has read and applied previously was all focused on the law of attraction and manifesting. Quit Like A Millionaire is the opposite of that. For her, it was an interesting take on scarcity mindset and how far that can get you.

    Mr Aspiring Millionaire found it extremely relatable because of his background.

    Quit Like A Millionaire Story

    Mr Aspiring Millionaire comes from Vanuatu, which was one of the least developed countries in the world at the time. Kristy Shen grew up in China in absolute poverty. For Mrs Aspiring Millionaire, hearing Kristy’s backstory, the early years, the emphasis on a good education, not wasting anything and a frugal mindset explained a lot about Mr Aspiring Millionaire and his family.

    Mrs Aspiring Millionaire grew up ‘white poor’ which is a far cry from the definition of poor in which Mr Aspiring Millionaire grew up in. In fact, one of our daughters (Mr Aspiring Millionaire’s daughter from his previous marriage) is growing up this way. She lives in the Solomon Islands, without electricity, running water (they go to the river for water), many neighbours live in dirt floor shacks etc.

    Hearing about Kristy’s upbringing, the things she did to make money such as hunting through the tip to make toys and the huge emphasis on education is common in island nations too. They simply do not have the resources available to most in countries such as the USA, Australia and most of Europe.

    Live Frugally

    With a background of poverty, you hold onto everything and live extremely frugally. Every small item matters and you mentally calculate how much an item e.g. a toy really costs. As in, that toy could pay for education back home. Kristy describes this and my partner’s family have done similar.

    Education Is Key

    Get the best education you can to secure the highest pay you can. The higher the pay, the more you can invest and the sooner you can retire. In countries such as China, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands, getting a good education gives you options. You can get a visa to live elsewhere and send money home to help the family.

    Education has a huge emphasis in these cultures. Not only education but specific careers. It’s not about following your passion. Earning a high income to provide is more important. If you earn well, invest wisely and live frugally, you can live how you want for the rest of your life instead of constantly grinding on the corporate ladder.

    This part hit home as Mrs Aspiring Millionaire grew up with the luxury of being able to do pretty much whatever career she wanted. And change career or jobs as she pleased. Plus the capacity and opportunity to do various side hustles. As such, she quit school due to personal issues in year 11 and has done a variety of jobs but always made a good income.

    Mr Aspiring Millionaire did not have the same opportunities and worked his butt off in shipping then diving. Both careers were taxing on his body and meant he was away from his family for long periods. Now, since the family is mostly in Australia, earning good money, assisting family back in Vanuatu to get educated is important.

    Avoid Debt

    All finances books focus on this. Growing up in China and being an immigrant family to the USA, Kristy outlined how strict this advice was. Avoiding debt is crucial to having the life you want. Going into debt is simply stealing from tomorrow to pay for today.

    Instead of having money to invest, you are stuck in a cycle of borrowing and it costs you a lot more. In the USA student loans are excruciatingly expensive. Australia has a different system. However, many students go into debt in both countries for degrees they might not use or are not clear on. Or the “follow your passion” mantra is more important than career stability.

    On top of the student loan debt, is the cost of living going through university and often a car loan. By the time most students finish their degree, they are starting life with extreme amounts of debt. Higher than other generations have ever faced.

    Instead of going into debt, look for ways to pay for your education, work and start your career debt free.


    Make your money work for you if you ever hope to retire. It’s not enough to simply live frugally, save and hope. The cost of living continues to rise plus, who doesn’t want free money?

    While I won’t be following the investment advice she outlined, I did like the fact she shared what she did so others can follow or opt to learn more.

    You can get Quit Like A Millionaire here.

    What did you think of Quit Like A Millionaire?

  • Book Review

    The Automatic Millionaire: Book Review

    How to Become a Millionaire Automatically

    We are bombarded with images across social media of luxury cars, clothing and lifestyles, as if that is what a millionaire is. In reality, most millionaires are your regular neighbours who invested for the long term, stayed commited and lived below their means.

    Best selling author, David Bach, shares exactly how to do this and why it’s so simple in his book, The Automatic Millionaire.

    How Much Easier Would it be if you Could be an Automatic Millionaire?

    Whether you know much about stocks or business doesn’t matter. Consistency and compound interest will get you there with enough time. Start now by putting away extra each pay into savings or your retirement fund or investing into shares.

    It doesn’t matter if you only start with $5, the main thing is to start and be consistent. When you can save or invest more, do it. As your income grows, increase your savings and investments as well.

    If your work or the government matches your retirement investing or offers any bonuses, take advantage of them. While you won’t be able to access them until a certain age in some cases, it is free money and can help you grow your retirement funds fast.

    For many people, having the money where they can’t touch it helps a lot.

    The Automatic Millionaire Book

    It’s an easy read and you can implement everything he talks about quickly. Instead of being full of financial terms many don’t understand, it’s written in a way everyone can understand and enjoy. David Bach is truly passionate about helping people with their finances (we have met in person) and this comes across in his work.

    When you are starting your journey to learn more about finances and want basic advice which guarantees you will eventually get where you want to be, this book is it! It is a great starting book for anyone.

    How do you Automate?

    Being an automatic millionaire sounds great, right? It is easy if you are patient and stick to it. Automatic Millionaires have automated their investing to ensure they retire as millionaires. It does not mean you are going to a be a millionaire tomorrow.

    Look at all your expenses and how you can easily automate them through direct debit. You can do the same with saving, investing, retirement, all of it.

    Arrange for your employer to add extra to your retirement fund. Set up an automatic investment plan to transfer money to shares. Have your savings taken from your wage before it even hits your bank account.

    Once you have everything set up for success: retirement, investing and saving, learn to live off the rest. By living off the rest you are acting as if you have a lower wage than you actually do, enabling you to become a millionaire without trying.

    Would I Recommend Reading The Automatic Millionaire?

    Reading finance books can be motivating and keep your mindset on track. You know where you want to be and The Automatic Millionaire makes it easy. It is definitely a book I would recommend for beginners and anyone else looking for a little inspiration.

    Most of it might seem like commonsense but as we all know, commonsense is not that common!

    Get The Automatic Millionaire here.