Gifts That Matter Don’t Come From Wal-Mart

… they come from the heart. In most of our lives, there seems to be a never-ending string of gift giving occasions – birthdays, graduations,

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Learning Yard Care Edition

Last fall, I attempted to fertilize the yard with fine dried compost – that seemed to work very well for making things grow. The only

The Essential Bookshelf

Over the last two years, I’ve reviewed in detail more than a hundred (actually approaching two hundred) personal finance and personal productivity books on The


Our Experience with Skype

A few days ago, I made an offhand reference to using Skype to nearly eliminate the cost of a land line phone at home. A

PearBudget: Dipping Your Toes into Budgeting

As I mentioned before, when I first began my financial turnaround, I constructed a tight budget and stuck to it like glue for the first

Reader Mailbag #11

Each Monday, The Simple Dollar opens up the reader mailbags and answers ten to twenty simple questions offered up by the readers on personal finance

Review: The Procrastinator’s Handbook

Each Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal productivity or personal development book. One of the first productivity books I reviewed on The Simple Dollar

Making the Hard Choice

When I think back over my life, I’ve found that time and time again, the hard choices I’ve made were the ones that provided lasting


Frugality Isn’t Poverty

Recently, my wife and I have kicked around the idea of installing clotheslines in our backyard. We both grew up in the country and we


Reduce Your Debt and Minimize Your Monthly Bills

I usually look for the little things that we can do to reduce our spending – things like installing more energy-efficient light bulbs or preparing

Review: The Big Payoff

The Simple Dollar book reviews are back again! Each Friday for the foreseeable future, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal finance book. After a long


Holding a Monthly Family Financial Meeting

Prior to our financial meltdown, my wife and I simply never sat down and talked about our finances. Right after our meltdown, we talked about


Get Personal & Professional Value from Idle Web Surfing

Given how the usage of The Simple Dollar spikes during the normal workday in the United States (this phenomenon occurs on many other blogs, too),


An Interview With Amy Dacyczyn

When I was first going through my financial turnaround, I was heavily inspired by Amy Dacyczyn’s The Complete Tightwad Gazette, not only as a person

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Greatest Hits Vol. 1 Edition

After receiving several dozen “This series was great” emails alongside several hundred “Please make it stop!” emails when it came to the Born to Buy

Born to Buy: Final Thoughts

This is the final discussion in a “book club” series on Born to Buy by Juliet Schor, which focuses on consumerism issues and young children.

What I’m Doing With My Economic Stimulus Check (Hint: It Doesn’t Involve the Word ‘Plasma’)

Over the last few weeks, several readers have written in asking me what I’m going to do with my economic stimulus check, perhaps in hopes

The Battle Between the Stuff I Want and the Guilt I’m Left With

Last month, I was sorely tempted to pick up Mario Kart Wii. Mario Kart has been my favorite video game series of all – I