Updated on 02.13.08

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Cooking Blog Update Edition

Trent Hamm

Recently, several readers have asked about my proposed cooking blog. There are really three big factors that have kept me from launching it.

First, I want to have plenty of content built up before I launch. My current plan is for it to have one new post a day, but I want to have a few weeks ready to go before I launch.

Second, each entry is taking a lot of time. This makes me think that I should either wait until I’m blogging full time to launch this thing or else “water down” what I’m doing. Neither one makes me feel good, to tell the truth.

Third, I’m still working on my writing voice over there, trying to find the right tone for writing about food. It’s a little different than writing about the usual topics on The Simple Dollar.

Eventually, I will launch it, but I’d rather do it right than just rush it out. In fact, I may launch another interim project before then.

Regardless, here are some interesting articles for you to read.

Tips for Quick Grocery Shopping The neat thing is that most of these tips also save money at the store as well. I’m a big believer in making a meal plan for the week in advance, so that I can prepare a grocery list and just blow through the store. (@ unclutterer)

Bad Ways To Use Credit: A List of 21 Credit Card Mistakes I committed most of these back in the bad old days. (@ the digerati life)

7 Steps to Turn Your Self-Improvement Desires Into Reality Got dreams but need help getting motivated? Leo has some nice tips. (@ zenhabits)

How Much Is Your Time Worth? I really love thoughts on this question because you get all sorts of interesting answers. For me, I believe most people drastically overestimate what the real value of their time is. They’ll drive their car to work at a $10 an hour job ($8 an hour after taxes), then not bother to make a grocery list and end up wasting an extra $15 at the grocery store on stuff they don’t need. (@ freelance switch)

How to Achieve Your Goals By Surrounding Yourself with Like Minded People I’m a big believer in this. If all of your friends are big spenders, it’s going to be easy to spend like crazy. If all of your friends are frugal, it’s much easier to be frugal. (@ money smart life)

The Simple Dollar Retro: The Constant Tug: Should I Invest Or Should I Pay Off Debt? Right now, we’re in debt repayment mode, at least until our student loans are paid off. At that point, we’ll probably begin to focus on investing. Why? It’s all about the interest rates.

A Guide to Quitting Your Miserable Job The number one thing is to start following your passion. If you hate your job, it’s not your passion in life – find something that makes you want to get out of bed in the morning and you’ll do well at it. (@ pick the brain)

How Can They Afford That? If you’re asking yourself that question, the answer is almost always “a frightening level of debt.” Maybe it should be “frugal living” instead. (@ gather little by little)

Four Steps That Will Increase Your Earning Potential Step number one: read something informative. (@ dumb little man)

The Choice-Minimal Lifestyle: 6 Formulas for More Output and Less Overwhelm My favorite one is “don’t provoke deliberation until you can take action.” In other words, don’t check your email just before you leave. (@ the four hour workweek)

Optimize Credit Scores When Eliminating Debt This idea really makes a lot of sense – plus Janice is a really good writer. (@ queercents)

The Simple Dollar Retro: Five Personal Finance Lessons That Rocked Me Like A Hurricane When I Figured Them Out They still do.

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  1. Thanks for including my article Trent!

  2. Frugal Dad says:

    I appreciate your thoughtful approach to starting up the cooking blog. I’ve been kicking around an idea to start a parenting blog, but like you I’m working to find my voice for writing about being a dad (not just a “frugal” dad). I look forward to all of your writing, so I doubt you will disappoint when the time is right.

  3. Chris says:

    speaking of your other interests trent I haven’t seen you mention what you think of the new season of lost so far. Personally I think it’s been perfect in how it’s built on the momentum of last season’s finale.

  4. Digital Guy 3 says:


    Stick with the Simple dollar blog…it’s good and will only get better if you focus on it. Splitting your time on multiple blogs could see the simple dollar suffer.

    Keep up the good work.


  5. Thanks for the update, I’m eagerly awaiting your cooking frugal tips. I’m interested in reading about How to Achieve Your Goals By Surrounding Yourself with Like Minded People. This is something my husband and I struggle with. We’re both busy and don’t meet a lot of new people. That’s not to say we don’t have friends we really care about, but few are on the same path of financial independence and consciousness. Thanks for the info.

  6. Laura says:

    I think it’s a good idea to hold back a bit while you get articles built up. I’d be interested in looking at a cooking blog as we’re trying to save money by cooking at home. By the way, do you know a good she-crab soup recipe?

    Thanks for including Gather Little By Little’s article. He does such a good job.

  7. samantha says:

    I can’t wait to see the new blog. I wanted to pass along another food blog that I love: http://www.elise.com/recipes/


  8. Amy says:

    I know that waiting is tough- I had a hard time with that when we launched. Now I am glad that we had a good foundation going before we put it out to the world.

    Thanks for the great links!

  9. Allison says:

    Don’t feel too bad if you can’t keep a post-a-day posting schedule for your cooking blog… no one (that I know of) does with a cooking blog. Particularly if you are providing daily recipes… to have to cook something every day, take pictures of it, and then blog about it… unless you are doing this full time (which most of us food bloggers aren’t) then you probably won’t have time! Most food bloggers have a posting schedule of anywhere between a few times a week to a few times a month, depending on how much stuff outside of food blogging that they have to do.

  10. kazari says:

    check out


    both great resources for foodie blogs.

    i’m certainly enjoying writing mine!

  11. I commend you for being thorough before launching the cooking blog—it’s hard to use that kind of restraint when you know you’re going to get some serious traffic right when you launch.

    A few weeks ready to go? How many posts are you looking at per day? This must be so much more time consuming since you probably have to test these recipes and do some actual cooking as you go, right?

  12. Lisa Spinelli says:

    Perhaps to start out you could do the posts less frequently? Say, a post every other day, or a post a week? I think it’s a really good idea. I’m looking forward to seeing your perspective on the topic.


  13. Ben says:

    Thanks for the mention Trent. I really admire people that like to cook and are good at it. I don’t know if it’s because I’m lazy or just impatient but I’ve never been a big fan of cooking myself. I enjoy a nice home cooked meal but am too impatient to make one very often.

  14. Steve says:

    For you food blog junkies, here is a new food blog aggregator: http://www.allaboutcooking.net. Check it out.

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