Updated on 03.12.13

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Connection Edition

Trent Hamm

One of the most fascinating aspects of the internet (for me) is how it allows people with similar perspectives and ideas to eventually find each other and congregate to share ideas, thoughts, concerns, and worries.

Take The Simple Dollar, for example. It seems to have become something of a “home” for people who are discovering (or rediscovering) the need for and the methods for managing their money. Often (and this is based on the emails I’ve received), The Simple Dollar (and the comments section) gives them the opportunity to speak out about this experience for the first time – and to find others that are going through the same thing.

I am incredibly glad that I’ve been able to find such a group of people. Many of you are going through the same things that I am, with some variations. Perhaps you’re at an earlier stage of digging out of debt – or maybe you’re already in good financial shape and are just looking for further tips. Perhaps you’re super frugal and find washing Ziploc bags to be a good tactic – or maybe you’re just happy with the money you save writing a grocery list.

What we all have in common is that we all recognize that financial recovery can be a struggle, we all like to share ideas about it, and, perhaps most of all, we don’t have many outlets for this interest in our day to day lives. Perhaps we’re the only person in our social circle with a frugal streak, or maybe it’s that we came from a family where money is not a topic that’s spoken about. In either case, we can find a place to connect with others who feel like we do: the frugal people.

Not the Sort of Person Who… Philip actually provides an interesting counterpoint to what I wrote above. (@ wisebread)

Eleven (Nearly) Effortless Ways to Save Money Each Month I love tips like these – minimal work up front, but a long tail of financial benefit. (@ frugal dad)

Obama’s 401(k) Plan Is a Double-Edged Sword I didn’t really want to comment on this plan until I heard more specifics, but several readers have asked about it. I feel roughly the same way as this article writer does. (@ moolanomy)

My Family Financial History (As Told by My Mother) People don’t acquire their behavior without effort or input along the way. I’ve often written about how my parents (and grandparents) have influenced my personal finance worldview, and here’s another angle on that whole idea. (@ get rich slowly)

Ink Recycling Programs Change, But You Can Still Benefit I’ve been recycling ink cartridges for years in various fashions. The only “problem” I ever had was when I attempted to refill a cartridge myself, which was disastrous. Anyway, this article has some good tips on how to recycle cartridges and save money. (@ smart spending)

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  1. Frugal Dad says:

    Trent, thanks for including my article. I’m equally impressed with the internet’s ability to create communities like The Simple Dollar where us like-minded “frugalites” can share ideas. In fact, the highlight of my first year of blogging has been (virtually) meeting so many others whose philosophies are so closely aligned with my own. In a way, it validates our line of thinking when external forces try to persuade us the other direction (media, mega consumers, etc.).

  2. guinness416 says:

    Great post by JD, he always comes up with such interesting stuff, and writes it so well.

  3. Ryan McLean says:

    This is a good roundup of some great posts. I agree with you that the way people can connect online is one of the best things about the internet. Well done yet again

  4. Jackie says:

    I agree with you– it has been so wonderful for me to have this space, because many of the people in my social circle are not as concerned with frugality as I am, and also because I was raised in an atmosphere of fear and secrecy when it comes to money, and I am really trying to reorder my thinking on financial issues now that I have my own family.

  5. Captain WTF says:

    Perhaps this has been discussed elsewhere? People who have reached age 70.5 are required to withdraw a graduated portion of their 401Ks or IRAs every year. One idea I remember from the presidential campaign was to drop this requirement for the current year in which stock values have tanked. It obviously does no good to be told in 2009 that retroactive to 2008 you didn’t need to withdraw since it would already have been done.

  6. Andy Jasner says:

    This is a great post. My wife and I are being frugal and trying to pay off debt. We realize bhow important it is if we want the type of future we desire.

  7. Sandeep Goswami says:

    Trent, You have a great thing going on here at Simpel Dollar. I too visit it 2-3 times daily to read posts and check the discussins going on in the comments.

    Thanks for providing this forum!

  8. Moneyblogga says:

    You are so right. Blogging has made me accountable to myself and I’ve seen some amazing changes in bad habits as a result. Many encouraging posts and comments offer advice, incentive and inspiration. I used to feel so alone with my problems but I have come to realize that many of us are in the same boat in all of this. All of the different ways in which people have described turning their negative financial situation into a positive one makes it easier to find things that’ll work for me too.

  9. Cory says:

    If you have older vehicles, check with your insurance agent/company before increasing your deductible as recommended in the frugaldad article.

    I called mine to do just that earlier today before this article came out. Turns out that the little I would save would be lost if I had to pay the extra deductible even once in the next 5 years. It just wasn’t that big of a saving.

    My agent told me that it was because all of the cars were 6+ years old.

  10. I think comments are the lifeblood of a blog. When I see hundreds of readers are commenting and exchanging ideas and tips, it makes me feel good seeing these people connecting to each other.
    A Dawn Journal

  11. Yup, I love the blogosphere! I love to read comments on other people’s blogs, and of course, I especially love to have conversations with people on my blog.

  12. Nice list! I hope I’ll also be included in the future connections :)

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