Mar 09, 2018

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks To Liz Thames, Author of 'Meet the Frugalwoods'

From buying her own car at the age of 16 to graduating with no student debt, Liz Thames seems to have always embraced the frugal lifestyle. After she and her husband took a hard look at their lives and thought deeply about what made them happy, they doubled down on saving money to pursue their dream: living in the Vermont woods. Liz realized that while financial independence is something we all crave, few actually take the difficult steps required to achieve it. In her new book, Meet the Frugalwoods, she shares the solutions to achieving that freedom! 


  • 0:00–1:01 Introduction
  • 1:02–2:50 There’s more to life than living on autopilot mode
  • 2:51–5:58  Fluorescent light bulbs just didn’t cut it anymore
  • 5:59–8:55 Strategically & decisively pursuing their dreams
  • 8:56–11:14 So… why Vermont?
  • 11:15–14:56 Learning the lay of the land
  • 14:57–17:15 Embracing a slower pace of life
  • 17:16–24:14 Living debt-free
  • 24:15–29:30 Who’s calling the shots when it comes to making financial decisions?
  • 29:31–29:58 A word from NGPF
  • 29:59–33:50 Liz, the self-taught money management guru
  • 33:51–35:52 Family matters: judicious managers of their money
  • 35:53–40:41 How to find frugal substitutions for things that you love
  • 40:42–44:07 It pays to be self-sufficient
  • 44:08–45:08 The biggest splurge was their home
  • 45:09–47:26 Pursuing her passion project of writing
  • 47:27–48:18 Conclusion

About Liz:

Favorite resources:

Favorite books:


  • “I don’t think that money is everything, but money is what enables life.”
  • “When you don’t have debt, and you have money saved up, you have a lot of options.”
  • “Money really dictates how you spend your time. Money is going to dictate the type of life you live. It’s really not the other way around.”
  • “Saving is just one part of the equation. You cannot just save money and throw it in a checking account. You have to build wealth in order to create a sustainable future for yourself.”
  • “I’m deeply passionate about spreading the message of financial literacy and the message of the joy that being in charge of your money will bring to you. I think we have a real shortage of financial education in this country…”


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About the Authors

Danielle Bautista

Danielle is a native of Southern California and a recent graduate from the University of Maine, where she braved the frigid winters—a feat in and of itself—and earned her Bachelor's degree in International Affairs. She has a passion for working with non-profit organizations and serving populations in underprivileged communities. When Danielle isn't writing NGPF blog posts, spearheading various outreach projects, or managing contests and flash surveys, you can find her doing some sort of outdoor activity, learning a new hobby, or cracking what she thinks are witty puns!

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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