Money Matters: 7 Investments I value the most in this lifetime

I have been pondering on some finance topics to write about this January. By tradition, the New Year stands as a fresh start for everyone and as expected, finance posts have been flooding my news feeds the past few weeks.

It’s a fresh start for us, too!

For months, I’ve been talking about how we were slowly but surely inching our way out of our credit card debt, and last week, we paid the last of it, yahoo! Let me take this opportunity to declare that we are finally “DEBT-FREE!”

7-important-investment

Opportunity in disguise

Paying our credit card debt monthly became really annoying especially when we wanted to do something as a family but couldn’t because we had to pay our credit card dues. It’s one of those lessons we learned the hard way.

But it was also a season that trained us to be wise with our spending and consider the things that are more important to use our money for.

By habit, we now have a certain amount monthly from our budget that we can put somewhere else, now that the debt is out of the way. Which brings me to ask myself, what are the things I want to invest my hard-earned money on?

7 Valuable investments I want to make in my lifetime

I came up with 7 – My marriage, building memories with my children, my spiritual well-being, our health, our education,  our relationships, and our future.

One thing I have observed among my most successful friends is that they have wisely allocated money for people and things that they value the most in life.

(READ: 5 Lessons in finances I don’t ever want to forget)

My Spiritual Well-being

Early this year, I made a decision to purchase an Archaeological Bible which cost me Php 2,700 (that’s a sale price, actually). It’s a lot of money, I know, but I take my spiritual walk seriously and I spend on tools that help me nurture my faith. When my faith is in shambles,  so is the rest of my life.

But that’s not where it ends. I do not dare live my faith alone.

I invest in opportunities that allow me to be with and share lives with fellow Christians who strive to live by the Word of God. When I do, I sometimes have to spend for coffee or food, but that’s okay because the truth is, I get more value from these meet-ups than I’m spending.

archaeological-bible

My Marriage

My husband, Jay and I used to take the kids out on our supposed “dates,” but later on realized that from time to time, we need to just be with each other and enjoy such moments.

We have not hired a stay-in helper in over five years, and we sure don’t have a place for one here in our tiny home, so we do the next best thing: We hire babysitters.

Then we eat out, watch movies with our feet up on La-z boys, chat over coffee at Starbucks or shop together for stuff we need for the house or for the kids. We also attend marriage workshops. We don’t necessarily spend a fortune for this but money is involved, still.

Even watching our favorite shows on Netflix over coffee has its monetary equivalent, but that’s okay because these dates contribute to the nurturing of our relationship as husband and wife.

When Jay and I are getting along well, we parent our children better.

The love of my life! #family #marriage #newyear2018?

A post shared by May De Jesus-Palacpac (@fullyhousewifed) on

Building Memories with our Children

Building memories with our children doesn’t necessarily mean spending thousands on travel, gadgets and toys , although traveling isn’t such a bad idea if you can afford it.

Take for example this week, we promised the kids that we’d take them on a picnic at one of the parks in the city, so we bought a few food items to bring with us.

My husband also ran to the toy store to buy a baseball and they spent a good part of our afternoon learning how to bat. The kids were ecstatic!

Here’s what we have been taught. That the quality of time we spend with our children now has a lot to do with the adults they will turn out to be. We invest in these family moments because one day, we will no longer be with our children. What we will leave them are these memories that we hope have helped build them to be God-fearing, confident, productive, peace-loving, and happy adults.

Back at our favorite playground! #TheOval #BGC #25th

A photo posted by May De Jesus-Palacpac (@fullyhousewifed) on

Our Health

I’ve mentioned a few times in my previous blogs that we’ve been doing our best to serve our family healthy meals. We got rid of chicken cubes and artificial seasoning and substituted some of the products we buy with healthier options.

For example, instead of Iodized salt, we learned that it is better to use sea salt; and instead of regular soy sauce, which is a staple in Filipino dishes, we now buy the less sodium versions or Liquid Aminos. Instead of snacking on junk food, we try harder to buy fruits.

This substitution business can become quite expensive, but hey, it’s better to spend to keep our bodies healthy than to having to deal with serious illnesses in the future.

Of course there’s no real guarantee that sickness will not come if you change your diet, but would you give up your health without a fight?

Then there are the annual physical checkups, the kids’ vaccines, vitamins and supplements, fitness and wellness programs — as I become older, the more I realize the value of investing on these.

And when it comes down to it, I’d rather own a health insurance I do not have to use than to be sick and not be able to take care of my children.

Our Education

I’m not only referring to university courses and earning degrees. Life is continuous learning – something I tell my children everyday.

We’re aiming to travel as a family because we now understand that being able to experience different cultures will add depth to your understanding of people and the world you live in.

We want our children to realize that the world does not revolve around them and to be aware of global issues that need resolution, such as poverty, global warming, economic instability, racial issues and civil wars.

Hopefully, they will want to take part in the solution.

(Read: The Poverty Mentality)

I graduated with a Bachelors degree in Communication, but I have learned the dynamics of today’s marketing years after I’ve received my diploma. I’ve been studying more about personal finances and investments, I’ve read up on parenting, homeschooling, and many other things.

I also try to join writing workshops to continue honing my skills. The opportunities to learn more and improve your skills are endless!

Some of the workshops I’ve joined are free, but it doesn’t mean they didn’t cost me anything. Like I said, we pay for babysitters to look after our kids when we need to be somewhere else where we can’t take them with us..

I invest in education because I believe that it’s important to keep up with progress and technology.

Speaking of workshops and training, we invest in our children’s, too. We believe in investing in our children’s dreams.

Our eldest is a budding animator and we’ve been helping him prepare financially to be able to afford the training, gadgets, tools, and programs he needs in the future to better enhance his skills.

I had no idea we were going to have a tech-headed kid, but am I glad that he has an educational plan that we can use if he plans to pursue this passion by enrolling in a university. It won’t be enough to cover everything, but at least we have something to start with.

One of our other sons wants to do Gymnastics and Parkour, and again, it’s something we’re looking into.

Our stand is that we want to invest in our children’s strengths which will most likely figure in their future.

(READ: Of Educational Plans and Mutual Funds)

Our Relationships

I still believe that genuine friendships will stand strong against time and distances, but in order to nurture new relationships, we must also invest in them.

For the past few years, this was a struggle for us because even “pot-luck” get-togethers can cost. Traveling and babysitter expenses are no joke. But we realized that valuing relationships also mean doing our best to be there for them.

So this year, one of the things my husband and I agreed on is to host more intimate dinners here in our tiny home and work out ways to join meet-ups with people who help Jay out in his ministry.

I have made some good friends in the blogging industry, and I value the few friends I’ve made in the past who are still in my life. So we will try harder to be present in their lives as much we can.

With fellow #mombloggers at Gab’s 6th #birthday. #mommybloggersph #bloggers #moms

A photo posted by May De Jesus-Palacpac (@fullyhousewifed) on

Our Future

As days go by, I become more and more aware that our kids are growing up and that we are getting older. “Our future” is just around the corner and we need to prepare for it.

We started investing in our retirement through Mutual Funds and have finally secured our first life insurance.

I was just talking to my BFF yesterday and I told her that at times, I would get distracted and feel discouraged when I realize how small the end-total of these finance investments we made would be compared to the investments of those who were wise enough to invest in these things when they were younger; but I remind myself that God will take care of our future. Our part is really to be good stewards of the things he gives us.

Besides, we are far better off now than we were five years ago when being able to invest was not even a remote possibility. But God made this possible, how can we even doubt him now? In fact, what we have accomplished now is proof that God is faithful, even in finances.

My cousin and new @sunlifeph partner, @clariz73 explaining VUL to me. Exciting times! #sunlifeph #finances #VUL

A photo posted by May De Jesus-Palacpac (@fullyhousewifed) on

Defining Investment

Wikipedia defines Investment as allocation of money or resource with expectation of benefit in the future. I am convinced that the above 7 fall into this category.

I’m not saying we should just splurge on get-togethers and travels, because we do tend to go the extreme and just spend, spend and spend.

No, we don’t have to spend so much all the time to be able to invest in our relationships and our children, but if there is one thing that I’ve learned during the past few years while we were getting back up on our feet, it’s that we need to know our priorities and align our finances to them.

It takes wisdom and discernment to know if you’re doing it right.  I get overwhelmed by it sometimes.

I’m not a finance expert, I can’t tell you much about calculation and economic forecasts; and a lot of people will tell you what you should and shouldn’t prioritize.

But what keeps me on track is finding out what God has to say about money, properties, and our future, because at the end of the day, it is what He says that matters.

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For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:21.

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42 Comments

  1. Agree with all of the above! Investments are important financially, but to invest in relationships, health, and marriage and kids is priceless!

    That said, try Trampoline Park at The Portal in Pasig! The attendants give free parkour lessons, just approach them 🙂 that’s what my hubby and 5yr old son do whenever they are there. They can give basic parkour moves and tips while you’re in a safe environment. Plus, there’s a metrodeal promo now for Trampoline Park (i think 40
    Or 50% off) 😀

    Thanks for all the great advice, and congratulations on being debt free! Woot woot!

  2. Yey for debt-free! We also finished the last payment for our loan last November and it was such a relief! Nakakahappy talaga yung thought na walang utang! ???????

  3. It’s all about balance & discipline. Most people see investments as unnecessary expenses and I’m glad how Sunlife and of course, other similar companies ( even banks ) are doing all these campaigns telling people to save and plan for their future. It’s so easy to spend and quite challenging to save, but as long as we see the bigger picture & we’re focused on our goals, we’ll all be on track.

  4. As usual, I love how you were able to.connect everything in the end. This inspires me not only to invest on my boys’ future and education but more on my relationship with them plus with my husband and of course, with God.

  5. Thanks for this. Sometimes we tend to worry too much on our financial positions we forget about the ones that really matter – family, real friends and health.

  6. I agree with you on everything you mentioned here. I also had a planning with hubby early this year and talked about investing and prioritizing the most valuable things in life, spiritual health, marriage and family, health too. Have a blessed year ahead May!

  7. Ahh…you just got me on track! Glad to know you are officially debt free. That is the goal I need to achieve by the 1st quarter of the year. I wonder how you were able to achieve this. I really need a sound advice on this matter. All of the things you shared here are very true and I agree in investing more on things that truly matter like- relationships and the future. Thanks for sharing your valuable insights.

  8. Yay for being debt-free!! Kami rin, we’re done na sa credit card last yr! Hehe! Anyway, I like all the investments you put in here. From now on, I’m trying to have a date with the husband na kami lang 2, usually kasi I insist to bring our little girl with us, but I guess it’s better to have a date with the husband and husband alone once in a while. Hehe! 🙂

  9. Hi! I always get inspired reading about people getting out of their debts through sheer determination as well as talking about finances openly because their future depends on it and glorifying God while at it. Congrats! 🙂

  10. These are really important investments any person could make. The money that goes into them is worth spending because there truly would be benefits and advantages. It’s wonderful to be free from debt, knowing that we only spend what we are capable of aside from the savings.

  11. What a great investment sis, you’re not just investing materially or worldly things but what I admire you the most is you are also investing Spiritually, I remember the Colossians 3:2. Yep! I agree with the “Debt-Free” our family goal for this year by God’s grace.

  12. I agree with all these. Investments doesn’t only mean finances, more than income and sustainability we also need to invest in relationships and our spiritual well-being. One of my goals this year is to participate amd actively join my fellowship group every weekend. I have missed a lot in our “vg” and i wanted to become a leader this year and pursue my dream of joining mission trips with hubby. I need to invest more time in creating meaningful connections. This reminded me, to put it on my list.

  13. I hope that more and more Filipinos will learn how to handle their money the proper way. Kung naituro lang ‘to (VUL and stocks) sa’kin nung mas bata ako I think mas malaki na kinita ng pera ko.

  14. Agree with all 7. And I love the fact that you put spiritual on top. Indeed, we wont have the rest of the things we need to prioritize if it’s not for Him. 🙂 God bless your plans this year!

  15. this post is an eye opener. when i read it i thought it would be more of money matters. after reading it, it makes me realize nga na tama, there are more things important other than money. and these things make the best investment of all.

  16. I love your points of investment :-)and thanks for giving me inspiration for this one. I learned my lesson last year about our marriage and now we are investing for a better relationship 🙂

    1. Yes! We only have HMO, but now I’m actually thinking about GoWell by Sun Life. It has free gym privileges along with the health plan.

  17. Your blog post is on point, sis. We really need to invest on some things in our lives but we need to prioritize our investments, that is, invest on things that really matter: our relationships, our health (both physical and spiritual), our children’s education and our future.

  18. I thought this will be about mutual funds and the like because of the title. Didn’t expect the seven you listed, which made me realize that investment is not always about money. And yes, I agree with everything you listed here 🙂

    1. It is actually about money, too. Because you invest in insurances and MF’s and all that for your future, to have the money to take your family on trips, to be able to spend for your child’s education. 🙂

  19. This year, I wish to invest on finances, I have had enough time investing on things that are not tangible. I would also love to be totally “debt-free” thank you for the word, I realized how important it is in one’s life…

  20. Congrats on finally being debt free!!! I know how much this means to you and Jay. I hope that Jon and I will also be able to work on investing on the stuff that matters most to us.

  21. Congrats on this post and for all the inspiration you shared. Grabe you know that feeling when you know you’re doing things right because you’re investing in the right aspects of your life? Well I plan to do it also 🙂

  22. TRUTH hurts but its the truth..been disregarding this area in our life for 5yrs since hubby started working..many times we took investment plans fr Philam and Generali but didnt finished it all..And now we have been contemplating on a Sunlife investment plan actually since we have moved now and decided to let go of our material stuff i have hoarded for two condos we leased out…AND NOW..reading your article made me more persevere and put into actions our plans with Sunlife.

    Maybe you can share with me May the best “investment” you took? A little of it might give me an idea hmmm…

    BEST INVESTMENT still though is our kids..and true to your words whatever we emulate to them will resonate in their future lives which is akin to building their lives now in preparation for the future. Glad we made our move to the Province..it bring us more closer and healthier, stronger bond as we have more time (no traffic so less time consumed in travels…) and now we can always go island hopping when we need to..its our travel101 this year to explore Central Luzon on a budget…this 1st Quarter its Zambales

    With baby steps, we will soon get over it…actually we are debt free since I started earning in real estate but my investment was more on material things for a business in Airbnb but decided to share our home instead and dispose “stuff” we dont need to reallign our investment to UITF or Retirement funds medyo “focused” more on a steady income before…

  23. AND OF COURSE…CONGRATS to both of you for taking that leap of faith..soon..will follow through..I am sure God will provide for our needs..its through all the blessings He showered unto our coffers that we learn to be good stewards of His treasure..i know I failed on this as many times He tested me..but now I learned and He gave me wisdom..THANKS May for this article it added more push to our desire to get one…

    P.S.
    kadami pala ng products ng Sunlife..what is the GoWell by Sunlife na health plan? share naman…was hoping to get Caritas in place of HMO..

    1. Hi Weng! I’ll be blogging about Mutual Funds and VUL soon,which are the products we’ve invested in, so far.

      With GoWell, so far, the information I’ve gathered about it is that it’s a health insurance that you can start for as low as 2K a month. It comes with Gym Membership, as well, to help you stay fit and healthy. It’s great because regular HMO’s do not cover certain illnesses which a health insurance can.

      Will tell you more about it once I gather more info. 🙂

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