The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Camping Edition

One activity my family does quite a lot during the summer is go camping. We’ll head to a state or national park, pitch a tent for a few days, spend all day outdoors roaming around in the woods or swimming in lakes, then eat a meal prepared over a camp fire and crash in a tent all night.

The nice thing is that with my flexible schedule (I can write almost any time when I’m awake and almost anywhere I am with my laptop) and with my wife on her summer teaching break, we have a lot of flexibility when it comes to camping trips. It’s a lot easier to find a good campsite on a weekday than on a weekend, after all.

The Cooking Learning Curve I think many people who don’t cook at home and instead eat out or get takeout for every meal are people who are frustrated by the learning curve of cooking. The truth is that the learning curve has more to do with who teaches you and the approaches you take than anything. If you start off trying to make coq au vin after having never prepared a dish in your life, it is going to be a disaster. That’s a bad approach, and it’ll keep you from enjoying the pleasures and the savings of cooking at home. (@ saving advice)

When Being Who You Are Challenges the Norms All of us do something that challenges the norms. Often, merely being frugal does it. The question is how we handle our relative uniqueness in a public setting. It’s almost always a bad idea to use it as a weapon to force others to match us, for example. (@ zen habits)

The Costs and Savings of Bicycle Commuting When I was in college and lived off-campus, I often commuted on a rusty old bicycle. One of my best memories of college was riding around on it in the middle of a bone-soaking rainstorm, celebrating a personal achievement of mine. Bicycling for a commute certainly can work. (@ get rich slowly)

Trying to Get a Handle on the Value of College The value of college is directly proportional to what you put into it. If you sit in the dorms goofing off all the time, you’ll probably not get a lot of value out of it. (@ free money finance)

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