family playing together

Ever since my husband and I had children, family vacation has always been a priority in our house. At least once per year, I love taking the kids on a week-long trip somewhere warm, exciting, and new. Of course, travel is costly. I want to be able to take my kids on vacation just like my parents did, but not at the expense of our financial goals. So, while we may not go anywhere fancy, we do make travel a priority. …

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Professional athletes often find themselves on shaky financial footing when they retire. This happens despite the fact that many of them make more money in one year than the average worker will make in a lifetime. Lifestyle inflation is real, people. As you accumulate expensive things, you expect more and better things in the future. It takes tremendous discipline for an athlete who earns a paycheck that screams, “Let’s pop champagne in my six-bedroom house!” to live a lifestyle that …

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Once a month (or so), I share a dozen things that have inspired me to greater personal, professional, and financial success in my life. I hope they bring similar success to your life. 1. An icebreaker in the Arctic Ocean From the description: 10 hours video of Arctic ambience with frozen ocean, ice cracking, snow falling, icebreaker idling and distant howling wind sound. Natural white noise sounds generated by the wind and snow falling, combined with deep low frequencies with …

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I often talk about how I enjoy preparing meals in advance by making a bunch of duplicate meals at once, popping them in the freezer in a state that’s almost ready to eat, and then pulling them out when needed, merely reheating and then eating them. For many people, the idea of preparing a bunch of meals at once sounds really challenging, so I thought I’d use the absolute simplest “meal prep” that I do in order to show you …

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“31 Days to Financial Independence” is an ongoing series that appears every Thursday on The Simple Dollar. You might want to start this series from the beginning! Last time, we finished up our examination of investing and saving for specific goals with a broader look at saving for smaller goals, such as a car or a house down payment. Today, we’re going to move on to look at insurance. Insurance is a challenging issue. Many people often buy insurance policies, …

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If you’ve been out of school for a while, your resume has probably evolved along with your career. That’s as it should be, but while you’re adding experience and tweaking your resume to reflect your latest career focus, don’t forget to step back and look at your CV like a hiring manager. What you see might surprise you. It’s easy to just keep tacking on new job titles, and hard to recognize when you’re creating a resume monster. Without some …

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Erica writes in with a question for the Mailbag that wound up with an answer that was just too long: My husband and I are film buffs. We watch a movie almost every night together and sometimes have movie marathons on the weekends and our walls are covered in film posters. However we have a 1700+ DVD and Bluray collection and a home theater system that cost thousands and subscriptions to several services and we still spend $100+ on movie …

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TSD’s Holly Johnson and Jon Gorey have, well, different perspectives on some things. Here, they share some ideas for a frugal Valentine’s Day date night. Valentine’s Day may be nothing more than a Hallmark holiday, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore it. Whether or not you choose to acknowledge it, your sweetie may be secretly aching for a little bit of romance. And if you ignore that, you’re just asking for trouble. Of course, Valentine’s Day gets tricky when …

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One of the most powerful concepts I’ve ever come across in my years of studying and thinking about personal finance issues is the concept of the “future self.” “Future self” is pretty much exactly what you think it is: It’s you at some point in the future. It’s not an optimistic version of your future or a pessimistic version of where you’re headed, but instead it’s as realistic as you can possibly make it. A Real Look at My Future …

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Are you planning to buy a new home this year? Unless you’ve recently won the lottery or can otherwise afford to pay in cash, it’s probably time to start thinking about how to prepare your credit for an upcoming mortgage application. The condition of your credit reports and scores is never more important than when you’re preparing to apply for a new home loan. A mediocre credit score can cost you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of a loan. …

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