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My Freshly Review (28 Days of Outsourced Cooking)

Overview - FreshlyI hate cooking. Abhor and despise could also be used interchangeably. So when I stumbled across a meal delivery service, Freshly, with a much different approach than season veterans like Blue Apron, Hello Fresh, and Plated, I was eager to give them a try.

Unlike those three, Freshly delivers individually packaged, chef-cooked meals. Literally, you pop the meal in the microwave for a few minutes and it’s ready to eat.

Given how much internal grumbling happens when I have to meal plan, grocery shop, cook, and clean up, I pounced at the thought of having a pre-made meal in just three minutes.

So for 28 days, I outsourced nine meals a week to Freshly.

Here’s what it’s like eating microwaved meals for a month…and whether I would recommend Freshly or not.

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You Need a Budget (YNAB) vs EveryDollar

YNAB and EveryDollar LogosIn the budgeting world, you won’t go far without hearing about Dave Ramsey’s EveryDollar. Being a long-time You Need a Budget (YNAB) user, I was curious to see how EveryDollar stacked up. Especially since EveryDollar has a free option.

Would EveryDollar be good enough to switch away from YNAB? Or at least worth recommending to friends who don’t want to pay for YNAB?

I used YNAB and EveryDollar side-by-side for an entire month. Here's what I learned.Click To Tweet

I focused on three areas I believe are important for any app wanting to help people get their money under control.

How easy is it to:

  1. Create your first month’s budget?
  2. Add transactions from your smartphone?
  3. Balance your budget at the end of the month?

This post shares what I learned and crowns a winner!

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The New You Need a Budget (YNAB) vs YNAB 4

YNAB Logo

Official support for YNAB 4 will end October 31, 2019. This primarily impacts Mac users upgrading to Mac OS (Catalina), however, there appears to be a workaround.

It’s been almost two years since You Need a Budget switched to a web based, subscription model for their software. When I first tried the new version in January 2016, there were significant gaps in features that prevented me from switching.

Now that YNAB’s had a couple years to evolve, it’s time to take a second look.

So here’s a review comparing YNAB to the old YNAB. For this review, YNAB means the web based, subscription version and YNAB 4 refers to the old, downloadable version.

I used YNAB and YNAB 4 side-by-side for about a month and a half in order to answer these questions:

  1. Is YNAB worth using for new users?
  2. Should YNAB 4 users upgrade to YNAB?
  3. Would I recommend YNAB over Mint or Dave Ramsey’s EveryDollar?
  4. Is it time to look for YNAB alternatives?

Well, here we go. Let’s jump in and see what I like about YNAB compared to YNAB 4.

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How to Dig Yourself out of a Bible-Reading Rut

In college, I remember a piece of surprising advice. I remember thinking, “Is that something a Christian is allowed to say?”

A friend shared how reading the Bible had gotten boring and monotonous for him. To which someone suggested he stop reading the Bible for a season.

Say, what!?

I’m surprised my friend didn’t turn into a pillar of salt after giving that advice.

But many years later, I get the underlying principle. Sometimes you just need to shift things up when you’re in a dry season.

To maximize the Word’s impact on our lives, we need a consistent habit. But to keep that habit from going stale, we need to vary our approach so our reading remains fresh.

So here are some different ideas to try if you find yourself in a Bible-reading rut.

Be disciplined in your Bible-reading but keep things fresh by varying your approach.Click To Tweet
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5 Lessons from 15 Years as a Christian

Today (October 18, 2015) is a significant milestone in my faith journey.

Fifteen years ago today, sitting at my computer in my dorm room, I gave my life to Christ and began a relationship with him. Along with that milestone, I also hit 10 years in full-time church ministry last month.

So I thought it’d be fun to reflect back and jot down a few lessons I’ve learned along the way.