Month: May 2014

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #43

Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well. 1. Walt Whitman on living If you manage to do these things, you’ll live a very great life. This is what you should do: Love the earth and sun and …

Dinner With My Family #36: Wisconsin Farmhouse Chowder

Wisconsin Chowder Recipe As we slip deeper and deeper into fall, our family is starting to eat more cold weather food – thicker soups and chowders and so on. Hand in hand with this is our ongoing effort to slowly clear out the recesses of our pantry and our freezer by using items that have …

Categories: Frugality, Meals

Little Moments

Each day is filled with little moments. Playing “catch” with a soccer ball with my son in the back yard in the cool fall air, both of us bundled up and kicking a ball back and forth. Smelling freshly-made scrambled eggs with tarragon and salt and pepper on top. Listening to a thought-provoking program on …

Categories: Getting Started

Some Thoughts on Handling Life’s Crossroads

Every so often, we’re met with a situation in our lives that represents a seriously life alteration. If we go one way, our whole life is going to go down a different path than if we chose the other option. These can take a lot of forms. The choice to marry someone. The choice to …

Categories: Getting Started

Reader Mailbag: Difficult Things to Write

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Handling small rollover 2. Parents who don’t plan 3. Loan payoff or retirement contribution? 4. Roth conversion and inheritance 5. Setting sportsmanship example 6. Fundraising 7. …

Categories: Books and Reading

Saving Pennies or Dollars? VoIP Options Versus a Landline

Saving Pennies or Dollars is a new semi-regular series on The Simple Dollar, inspired by a great discussion on The Simple Dollar’s Facebook page concerning frugal tactics that might not really save that much money. I’m going to take some of the scenarios described by the readers there and try to break down the numbers …

Categories: Frugality

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Future Plans Edition

This past week, I spent several hours putting together a detailed plan for some interesting things for The Simple Dollar through the end of 2012. Instead of focusing strictly on the writing (as I often spend my time doing), I stepped back and tried to look at the bigger picture. What do I have already …

Categories: Books and Reading

Nine Things You Can Do Today to Improve Your Life

A few days ago, a friend of mine made a comment that stuck with me. He said that his life felt like it was stuck in an endless rut and that everything he could think of to put it on a better path was so big that it seemed insurmountable. I started off writing him …

Some Thoughts on Magazine Subscriptions

Kelly writes in: Do you subscribe to any magazines? Why? Do you find enough value in them to be worth the cost? This was originally a question in Thursday’s reader mailbag, but the answer became long enough that I felt it deserved a post of its own. Sarah and I get several different magazines in …

Categories: Books and Reading

Saving Pennies or Dollars? Meal Mixes

Saving Pennies or Dollars is a new semi-regular series on The Simple Dollar, inspired by a great discussion on The Simple Dollar’s Facebook page concerning frugal tactics that might not really save that much money. I’m going to take some of the scenarios described by the readers there and try to break down the numbers …

Reader Mailbag: Occupation

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Student making ends meet 2. Roth and regular 401(k)s 3. Difficult career choice 4. Does frugality hurt the economy? 5. File or shred? 6. When should …

Categories: Books and Reading

Review: How to Make Money with Social Media

Every Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal finance or other book of interest. Also available is a complete list of the hundreds of book reviews that have appeared on The Simple Dollar over the years. One common question I get from entrepreneurial readers is how exactly people make money with social media. How can …

Categories: Books and Reading

Do Something Different

“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds” – Ralph Waldo Emerson People often ask me why I seem to enjoy frugality so much. When I tell them the real reason, they usually don’t believe me. The real reason is that I find doing the same thing over and over again boring. So, how …

Categories: Getting Started

Rethinking a Hobby

Kevin writes in: I love what you write about keeping your hobbies and interests, but I have a bit of a different problem. When I was a teenager, I found a lot of solace in comic books. I like how they presented a world that wasn’t completely soaked in moral ambiguity and that good people …

Categories: Getting Started

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #41

Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well. 1. Sheena Iyengar on the art of choosing Why do we make the choices we make? If we’re trustworthy decision makers, why do we often second guess our choices? If …

Dinner With My Family #35: Peanut Butter and Apple Wraps

Peanut Butter and Apple Wraps This week’s goal was simple. What sort of healthy lunch can we make with the stuff on hand that’s in the spirit of fall (and has some of the flavors of the season), while still being relatively light, appeals to the kids, is inexpensive and uses a lot of what …

Categories: Frugality, Meals

Saving Pennies or Dollars? Riding a Bicycle

Saving Pennies or Dollars is a new semi-regular series on The Simple Dollar, inspired by a great discussion on The Simple Dollar’s Facebook page concerning frugal tactics that might not really save that much money. I’m going to take some of the scenarios described by the readers there and try to break down the numbers …

Categories: Frugality, Saving Money

A Dose of Financial Reality

Anna writes in: I’m amazed at how many people who write into your mailbags have enormous student loan debts and mortgages. I know that prices have increased, but whatever happened to just working at your job and using that money to pay for school and for your down payment? I know how much you like …

Categories: Getting Started

Reader Mailbag: Ankle Twist

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Retirement savings on smaller income 2. Focusing on health 3. Digging through debts 4. Getting started in book publishing 5. Trading board games by mail 6. …

Categories: Books and Reading