Remember when you were in high school and you had to take a foreign language in order to graduate? Back then, I was probably what you would call the typical American kid. I was concerned about what was going on in my little world, sports, and trying to impress the girls around me. That was about it. I was a good student, and I did well in all of my classes – including Spanish. However, I put in my required two years of study and let (almost) everything I learned slowly seep out of my brain to make room for other important things – like baseball stats.

Hindsight is 20/20

Fast forward a decade and a half, and I really wish that I had continued on with my foreign language education. Why, you ask? Well, first of all it is pretty cool to be able to communicate with others across the world. Secondly, now that I’ve grown up, I’ve discovered that I like to travel. However, traveling to different countries can present some challenges, especially if you don’t speak the language. Knowing the language also helps you understand the culture. So, I’ve decided that I’m going to get back on the horse and learn a few different languages.

I would love to learn several different languages, however I decided that I would start with Spanish. There are a ton of different countries that I would like to travel to that speak Spanish, plus there are a lot of Spanish speakers here in the U.S. Besides that, I still remember some of the basics (including pronunciations), so I thought this would be a great place to start.

Learning Spanish on the Cheap

There are a ton of different resources that are out there – both paid and free – to help people like me learn a different language. Being the cheap ass frugal freak that I am, I decided to start out with the free versions – obvi. First, I checked out our public library and found that they have an online program called “Mango Languages.” This program is especially designed for those who want to be able to speak the language. Holly also pointed me to a new online program called Duolingo. It is pretty sweet. It uses pictures, words, and sounds to help you learn how to both speak and write the language. It even has an android app that Holly downloaded onto her Republic Wireless smartphone.  Since we’re going to travel to Mexico with friends next month, Holly is mainly interested in learning key words like “coffee,” “vegetarian,” and “bathroom.”  She’s also adamant about learning how to order all of her favorite alcoholic drinks.  (SPOILER ALERT: There are a lot of them)  I’m more interested in learning how to speak conversational Spanish so I’ve decided to try to become as fluent as possible. After only a few days, I already feel relatively comfortable speaking the language. Hablo espanol umpocito!

Anyhoo, let’s get to some of the best posts of the week!

Nick at asks whether he should start monetizing his blog.  Umm…….yeah.

Suburban Finance talks about how you can earn a degree without going into debt.

Mom and Dad Money talked about how a coffee habit can be detrimental.

Jacob at Iheartbudgets wrote something awesome.  I’m too lazy to look up what it was.  You’ll just have to trust me.

Michelle at Making Sense of Cents wrote about her wedding budget.

The Happy Homeowner shared some news about selling her condo.

Luke 1428 wrote about health, wealth, and moments of clarity.

Budget Blonde wrote about how to save for a new car.

We hope that everyone has a bitchin’ weekend.  We’ve got an overnight babysitter on Saturday night so we’re hoping to do something awesome!  How about you?  What are your plans this weekend?