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About

  • About
    I first started a private online diary in 2002 when I was miserably unhappy and couldn’t afford Prozac. At the time I had no health insurance, no job and we’d been trying to get pregnant unsuccessfully for over two years. To top it all off, I weighed over 300 pounds. So I blogged my way down from that cliff – through my gastric bypass surgery and subsequent 135 pound weight loss, through getting accidentally pregnant only four months after my surgery while we were still living with family to save money for a house, through that amazing pregnancy and horrendous birth and through the purchase, renovation, and sale of our first home. Then I gave birth to a deliciously beautiful daughter we named Genoa. We coveted that name for five years and used it before we realized no one had a clue how to pronounce it. It's GEN-o-a, not gen-O-a. Anyway, when Genoa was a year old, we got smart and left California for the pristine-r pastures of the greater Portland metro area. This was probably the best decision we ever made as a married couple. Genoa was not a good sleeper. But she will always be my GIRL and having a daughter became a turning point for me. Literally the tipping point that led me to change my life and end my marriage. I would toss and turn at night while she nursed, while she refused to sleep, while she became her own person and my life boiled down to a pretty simple equation: if my daughter was me -- living my life -- what would I want for HER? Better. That's what. So yeah. I broke up my family because I wanted -- no, DESERVED -- better. For me. For them. It was either the best decision I've ever made or the worst. Only time and forgiveness will tell. It's been over six years since the divorce now -- a wild and wondrous six years, full of strife and horror and sex and love and therapy and the kind of personal and emotional growth I had no idea I was capable of achieving -- and I appear to have come full circle. In February of 2017, I asked the man of my dreams to marry me and he said YES. We went to Cancun with my parents and got married right after we got home. We now live in a huge house less than a mile from the huge house I shared with my ex. From a bird's eye view, it is a remarkable similar life to the one I used to have -- same suburbs, same beautiful children, same lifestyle. But if you look closely, you'll see that I'm an entirely different human being now, with different values, different views, different friendships, different goals. The main difference is that I am happy now. I am surprisingly comfortable in my own skin, annoyingly cheerful and relentlessly chatty. I have an almost scandalous obsession with cheeseburgers, and I never, EVER wear sweat pants in public. My name is Amanda Marie Penelope Westmont. Yes, that's my porn name. It's officially my husband's last name too. No, I'm not kidding. This is my blog.

The Rules

  • In order to maintain some level of personal privacy, I'm not willing to disclose my husband's salary, how much we pay for housing or anything about our tax situation. I also plan not to bore the internet with our regular monthly bills (PG&E, cell phones, etc) - not only are they boring, but there's not much I can do about them. Instead, I'll be focusing on our discretionary spending - the fun stuff that REALLY exposes who we are and what we value (here's a hint: food, Target and, uh, FOOD).

The Budget

Every Dollar Counts

May 19, 2006

April 05, 2006

April 04, 2006

March 31, 2006

March 29, 2006

Need Advice?

  • Once a week I'll be posting a Q&A. Just consider me your own personal Suze Orman. E-mail me with your burning financial dilemma and I'll give you my two cents while The Internet tags along.
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