The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 293)

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #109

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.This past week, I finally hit my limit on winter and I’m ready for spring and summer to return. In order to make myself feel better about it, I filled up my screensaver with pictures of summer.1. […]

Fixing “Enough”

A few days ago, I watched a documentary on the football player Vince Young. I live in the territory of the Big XII football conference, so I still remember several years ago when Vince Young played football for the University of Texas and absolutely terrorized our conference. […]

Frugality Versus New Interests

A reader recently wrote to me about her struggles with when to be frugal and when not to be:I’m a long-term reader and appreciate your work. Just came across this blog entry and thought to pass it along if you haven’t already seen it ( […]

Untangling Emotions from Purchases

It’s almost impossible right now to avoid hearing about the issue of gun control. It’s all over the news. It seems to be the topic of discussion on every messageboard I read.I don’t really have any stances worth sharing on the issue, and I have no interest in discussing the politics or personal rights of the controversy. […]

Reader Mailbag: Child Names

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. Dictation software 2. Private school worth it? 3. Switching houses to avoid mortgage 4. Home exercise routine? 5. Weather compromise in Iowa? 6. Angry about money 7. Currency exchange thoughts 8. Family screen saver 9. […]

Wearing It Out, Paying It Forward

I’m actually pretty proud of myself when I use an item until it’s genuinely worn out.I’ll hold onto socks until the toes have gaping holes in them. I will wear t-shirts until they’re beaten into oblivion. I’ll use razor blades until I’m scared I’m going to badly cut my neck or cheeks with them (and with a razor blade sharpener, that takes a good long time). […]

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Fantasy Baseball Edition

It’s mid-January. What does that mean for me? It means spreadsheet time. I love playing fantasy baseball, and the people that succeed at fantasy baseball tend to be the ones who find some sort of statistical edge over the other guys in terms of figuring out who the best “bang for the buck” players are. […]

A Quick List of Free Things My Family Has Done So Far in 2013

We went ice skating as a family during a free skating day at the local ice skating rink. We found out about this because we watch the local community calendar. We played several board games among the ones already sitting on our shelves. […]

Some Thoughts on “Expected Value”

In the middle of last year, I wrote an article on playing the lottery in which I talked about the “expected value” of winning a lottery ticket. In that article, I gave an example of a typical Powerball jackpot and spelled out how the average return you would get on a $1 lottery ticket is $0.36. The idea of “expected value” isn’t a new one to me. […]

Helping Your Children

One of the questions I’ve really struggled with over the past several years is how much help I should provide to my children as they grow older, and what form that help should take. When I turned eighteen and left for college, my parents were more or less finished with their role as parents for me. I only lived under their roof again for a single summer (the first summer after college). […]