About

My name is Matt and welcome to my blog on pursuing financial independence!

Together with my fiancée, I’m distilling down money strategies that have helped us go from living paycheck to paycheck, to now saving over 60% of our after-tax income.

It wasn’t always easy for us. I remember looking at my net worth near the end of 2013 and seeing I had a negative savings rate. My fiancée was in a similar position, actually much worse due to a nasty fraud event. That was our rock bottom and we’ve been slowly been crawling our way out since.

For more on our story, check out our recap here as told on The Huffington Post. For more on my individual journey with personal finance, check out my first post ever on Distilled Dollar.

About Us – What We Do for a Living


I’m a licensed CPA and my fiancée is an operations manager. I used to work in public accounting at a Big Four accounting firm. I now work in industry and get to enjoy my nights and weekends again. 🙂

We live in Chicago, which is an expensive place to live, but we find ways to be frugal. We love to travel but we tend to enjoy staycations. That leaves us more time with our two cats anyway!

Our Cats

My other hobbies include reading a book a week and training for triathlons. Funny enough, thanks to audiobooks, my two hobbies tend to overlap quite a bit.

About Us – Distilled Dollar

I officially launched Distilled Dollar in March of 2016 as a way to connect with like minded individuals and as a way to enhance our own journey.

Another reason I launched the site was because of my fiancée’s suggestion. We had talked through so many difficult money issues early in our relationship that she encouraged me to share some of the same ideas online. She also understood it this site is a healthier outlet for my personal finance obsession. She no longer has to hear me talking her ear off about HSA’s and Charlie Munger quotes.

Naturally, this site serves as a public place where you’ll witness our own mistakes and blunders.

Together, we can upgrade our financial lifestyles as we internalize what the Romans wrote so many years ago: “From the errors of others, a wise man corrects his own.”

If you haven’t already done so, check out why I became interested in personal finance and why I created this blog!

If you’re interested in book reviews or ways to learn more about financial independence, then check out my top 5 book recommendations.

Lastly, as part of the many books, essays, and speeches I’ve learned from over the years, I’ve also collected memorable quotes that have helped me on my path to financial independence. Check out the quotes here!

If you haven’t already done so, introduce yourself in the comments below or in the comment section of my own introduction. If you would like to see any topic in particular, or if you have a specific book you want me to read, comment below or contact me directly.

– Matt