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Carnival of Personal Finance #388: Thanksgiving Preparation Edition

It’s only November 19th and yet Thanksgiving is just 3 days away. It definitely crept on me this year, but I’m looking forward to a relaxing extended weekend!

In honor of the Thanksgiving, I broke down the carnival into sections based on the correlations I see between personal finance and Thanksgiving. Happy reading and enjoy your abbreviated week!

The Turkey – Editor’s picks – These articles are the highlights of the carnival, just like the turkey is the highlight of the Thanksgiving weekend. It simply doesn’t get much better than this.

Jeff Rose from Good Financial Cents presents Common Interview Questions and How to Answer Them, and says, “Don’t Choke! 10 Interview Questions (with Answers) That Will Help You Land Your Dream Job”

Peter from Bible Money Matters presents Is It Really Possible to Become a Millionaire?, and says, “There‘s no magic involved when for becoming a millionaire. It’s more a matter of becoming a diligent saver/investor. You don’t need a get-rich-quick scheme to make that happen.”

Ray from Squirrelers presents Higher Salary or Better Experience?, and says, “When it comes to pursuing job opportunities, some people go for the highest salary. Others gravitate toward what they perceive to the better experience. This article explores what makes most sense at different stages in our careers.”

Football – Money Management – Just like many football fans constantly check their phones under the table to see the score, those who manage their money are more likely to be aware of their financial situation. Some people get alerts when their team scores, others get alerts when their checking account balance is low!

Tie the Money Knot presents Paying Kids to Do Chores: What Do You Think?, and says, “Parents – especially those with an interest in personal finance – want their kids to learn to be smart with money and make good decisions. Along those lines, what does it teach kids when they are paid to do chores?”

Money Beagle presents Reduce Complexity And Add Value Instead, and says, “Little things can make sense when taken by themselves, but can often conflict with other goals. Please read this article to understand how this applies to many areas, including money management.”

Jacob from My Personal Finance Journey presents From Bankrupt to Building Wealth Within 3 Years – A Personal Account, and says, “This post describes in detail one personal account of being gainfully employed only to have the market crash and falling into bankruptcy. The post describes how one person was able to rise above it all and build wealth within a three year period.”

Glen Craig from Free From Broke presents 4 Steps to Make Sure You Are Financially Protected from the Next Natural Disaster, and says, “Natural disasters can devastate you financially if you aren’t prepared for them. Take these 4 steps to heart to make sure you are financially protected from the next disaster.”

Matt Bell from Sound Mind Investing presents Long-Term Care Insurance: Assessing Your Needs, and says, “One of the biggest financial threats we’ll face is that of overwhelming medical bills late in life. Should you protect against that threat with long-term care insurance? Here are some key questions to consider.”

DPF from Digital Personal Finance presents Reaching the Goal of Financial Freedom, and says, “We can’t work forever, nor would we want to. By focusing on 3 basics: making money, saving it, and investing it – we can work toward the goal of financial freedom!”

Mike from Experiglot presents Is Lifestyle Inflation Okay?, and says, “The role that lifestyle inflation plays on your finances.”

Black Friday – Budgeting and Saving – Many people scour Black Friday sales and map out their entire day of shopping so that they are able to pick up everything on their list. Plan early and you’ll benefit later!

Paula Wethington from Monroe on a Budget presents The Myth of the Middle Class Lifestyle, and says, “You can’t do everything that society considers to be middle class lifestyle on what is really a middle class income.”

Eric from Narrow Bridge Finance presents Is AAA Worth the Cost?, and says, “A few months back, I got a letter in the mail from AAA reminding me that it is time to renew my membership. I have been a AAA member since 2007. My car broke down and I needed a tow. I signed up and got a tow in the same call. When it was time to renew, I had to think hard about whether or not it was worth the annual $57 cost.”

Nicole from Nicole and Maggie: Grumpy rumblings of the half tenured presents What the allowance does, and says, “Nicole and Maggie discuss allowances in the context of budgets.”

Green Panda Treehouse presents The Biggest Budgeting Lie That We Tell Ourselves, and says, “Are you honest with your money management?”

Family – Frugality – Sometimes the best way to save is by cutting back, but other times it can be too much. Make sure you spend on the things you care about (or take some time for yourself this weekend) so you don’t go crazy.

Money Thinking presents 6 Tips for Purchasing a Vehicle, and says, “Money Thinker shares 6 hot tips for purchasing your next vehicle.”

Money Walks presents Revving Up for Black Friday, and says, “Thanksgiving is next week, and with Thanksgiving comes Black Friday! Money Walks explores a couple of ways to ease the craziness that comes with the most popular shopping weekend of the year.”

Miss T. from Prairie Eco Thrifter presents 5 Ways to Save Money in College, and says, “Being smart and avoiding unnecessary spending can help you save money in college. Remember these five money saving strategies to stay comfortable without breaking the bank.”

Lance from Money Life and More presents Save Your Christmas Decoration Shopping for After Christmas, and says, “Our first Christmas out of college was rather pathetic in terms of decorations because we didn’t have hardly any of our own but we managed to scrape by. Wait a second… I didn’t say we went out and bought a bunch of stuff? Very observant of you! Here’s why…”

Wishbone – Finance and Investing – It’s hard to predict how the market will perform, heck, we don’t don’t even know what our tax situation will look like next year. Let’s just close our eyes and hope everything works out for the best.

D4L from Dividend Growth Stocks presents Defined-Benefit Pension Plus Dividend Stocks For A Prosperous Retirement, and says, “This year I turned 50, and I now find myself thinking about, and planning for, retirement much more than in the past. I have long since resolved that social security will not provide for my needs in retirement (nor was it ever intended to). Fortunately, I am one of an ever-shrinking group that is still covered by a defined benefit pension plan. So, how should a pension fund figure into my retirement…”

Alejandro Garcia from ETF Universe presents Agriculture ETF Guide, and says, “Agriculture isn’t as popular and certainly doesn’t get the media coverage that Gold and Oil, but some strong fundamentals have many commodity investors like Jim Rogers feeling very bullish about agriculture commodities. And thanks in large part to the growth in exchange traded funds (ETFs), the individual investor can invest alongside institutional investors.”

Neal Frankle from Wealth Pilgrim presents What Are Inflation Protected Bonds? Are they Safe?, and says, “Whenever the stock market enters a turbulent period, people look for alternatives to equities. Inevitably the term “TIPS” comes up (Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities). This is the “go-to” bond people buy that is protected against inflation. But what are inflation protected bonds and are they a smart investment?”

Andy from Saving to Invest presents How Leveraged and Inverse ETFs Can Fool You With Absolute vs. Relative Returns, and says, “Just as your gains are magnified so too are your losses if the market or underlying ETF index moves adversely to your ETFs characteristics. Further, in volatile markets, the concept of absolute vs relative returns can play havoc with your ETF returns.”

Ken Faulkenberry from Arbor Investment Planner presents Asset Allocation Model Portfolio – Choosing Asset Categories, and says, “An asset allocation model that is divided into asset categories provides a practical template for analyzing an investment portfolio.”

J.P. from Novel Investor presents What Is A Trailing Stop Order?, and says, “The type of orders you use is just as important as what you buy and sell. A trailing stop order allows you to limit your losses without sacrificing gains.”

Bryan from Gajizmo – Personal Finance presents American Politics, The Fiscal Cliff, QE3 & The Gold Market, and says, “Talk of the fiscal cliff is at an all-time high, yet not everyone understands what all the hoopla is about. This article focuses on the fiscal cliff and QE3’s affect on the equities and commodities markets, explaining the uncertainty ahead. Included is input from the CEO at BullionVault.com, a site to buy gold online, which may prove a safer investment through all this volatility, as well as multiple other resources from major new sources. I think this article would be very useful for the PF community.”

Drew from Objective Wealth presents A to Z of Objective Wealth: I is for Index Funds, and says, “Drew makes his case for for investing via index funds. Whether you look at it from a beginner, intermediate or advanced viewpoint, being boring and average for once turns out to be the coolest thing you do to invest successfully long term.”

Roger Wohlner from The Chicago Financial Planner presents Should You Buy Financial Services From Tommy Lee Jones?, and says, “Choosing the right financial advisor for you and your family is critical. You want to do your best to find someone who is competent, whose compensation method is made clear and is transparent, and who you feel that you can trust. Don’t be afraid to ask direct pointed questions and don’t settle for half-answers.”

Karl Marrion from WiseStockBuyer presents 9 Investing Mistakes You Don’t Want To Be Making, and says, “There are many common mistakes that investors make. Find out what they are so you can avoid making them!”

Michael Kitces from Nerd’s Eye View presents IRS Rules For Paying Investment Fees From Taxable And Retirement Accounts, and says, “Given the costs associated with investment advice, most people want to maximize any available tax benefits to help mitigate the cost. However, it’s important to make sure the fees are paid from the correct accounts, or your entire IRA can be disqualified!”

Giant Parade Balloons – Credit and Debt – It’s easy to get caught up in all the excitement. But be careful, both can crush you!

Big Cajun Man from THE Canadian Personal Finance Blog presents Why Are There So Many Things to Worry about at 2 AM?, and says, “Many nights sleep are lost due to financial worries, and 2 AM seems to be the witching hour for some of us.”

Pauline from Reach Financial Independence presents Calculating the weighted average interest rate on your debt(and why I am not paying mine faster), and says, “After explaining how to calculate the average interest rate on your debt, I consider if paying my debt earlier is worth it.”

Philip from PT Money Personal Finance presents Not All Debt Is Bad: Good vs. Bad Debt, and says, “Guest poster Adrian Cartwood from 7million7years.com proposes that not all debt is bad–that there is both cheap and expensive debt.”

Shawna from Money Misfit presents How Often Do You Really Check Your Credit Report?, and says, “Check yours today if you haven’t done so in a while!”

Giving Thanks – Economy and Real Estate – We get to the more serious part of the holiday. Let’s take a small step back and take a look at two topics that have huge effects on our lives even though we typically take a hands-off approach.

pfblogger from Personal Cents presents What is the Fiscal Cliff?, and says, “Pfblogger explores the fiscal cliff and how it may affect people if legislation isn’t passed to prevent it. ”

Pete from Intelligent Speculator presents Real Estate – Diversification And Hedge Against Inflation?, and says, “How you can look into real estate as an investment.”

Martin from Studenomics presents Two Moving Out Horror Stories You Must Learn From, and says, “Are you thinking about moving out? Please learn from these horror stories.”

Clint from Accumulating Money presents Getting a Mortgage or Paying Cash, and says, “For most people, buying a home means going into debt to finance the purchase. However, if you’re fortunate enough to have the option to pay cash to buy a home, it’s wise to fully consider your options before taking the plunge.”

Charles from Wallet Hub presents “Getting Ready for Pre-Approval “, and says, “After the collapse of the housing bubble, getting a loan to buy a home became a lengthier process. No longer are lenders falling over themselves to get your business. Know what you should have to get pre-approval before you start shopping.”

Pilgrims – Careers – It’s not always easy to manage your career (and it certainly wasn’t easy to be a pilgrim), but if you ask for some help for your peers (or Native Americans), you’ll surely make it through the winter.

Gen Y Finance Journey presents Demographics Affect Your Benefits, and says, “As we enter open enrollment season, I take a look at how the demographics of your company’s workforce may have an impact on the benefits you receive.”

Jefferson from See Debt Run presents Consumer Driven Health Plans – A Good Option?, and says, “Consumer Driven Health Care plans are becoming very common in today’s corporate world. However, there are a few things about this plan that really concern me.”

MD from Start Freelancing Now presents How-to Snag Freelance Writing Work Today, and says, “We help you find freelancing work right now!”

Mike from The Financial Blogger presents Why You Should Earn a Degree That Actually Pays, and says, “Why you should seek out an education that matters.”

Leftovers – These articles don’t fit into any specific category, but keep in mind how nice it is to have a few days off from cooking after the holiday!

Odysseas from Wallet Blog presents Consumers are Being Scored on More than Just Their Credit, and says, “Banks, insurance companies, employers, retailers, marketing agencies, political candidates, and more are using predictive analytics to gain insights into people’s lives. You’re likely being rated on much more than your ability to manage credit these days, so it’s a good idea to know what’s going on.

Kristen from My Dollar Plan presents Do I Need Travel Insurance?, and says, “I’m always wondering whether or not I need travel insurance when I book a trip. If you have the same question, this is a great read!”

Michael from Financial Ramblings presents Insuring a New (Teen) Driver, and says, “Our oldest just turned 15, which means he’s now eligible for a learner’s permit and… Yikes! Not too far from getting his driver’s license.”

Carnival of Personal Finance #371: Proud To Be a 99%er Edition

Welcome to the #371st edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance! As usual, it’s a pleasure to host, and it actually seems like there were fewer articles this week, which made it easier to actually read all the articles here! I hope you enjoy!

The Occupy Wall Street movement seems to have fizzled over the past few months. Still, it helped to bring up the conversation of “what is fair” to national prominence.

One of the results was that many people banded with the 99% and didn’t want to be branded as a “greedy 1%er”. Is that true of personal finance bloggers as well? Or are we focused on the numbers aspect (who doesn’t want to be one of the 1% richest Americans)?

For this carnival, let’s find out what you guys really think. Are you proud to be a 99%er (which can mean a lot of things to a lot of different people)? Or are you upset about not being a 1%er?

The 1%-ers

These are my editor picks as these articles stood out from the crowd:

Darwin from Darwin’s Money presents Are You Able to be Happy for Friends and Family That are Wildly Successful? – I think we all have people who have more success than we do, any I know that I sometimes struggle with other people doing better because I want what they have. For me, it’s definitely a work in progress for acquaintances, but for my close friends, I find myself wanting only what’s best for them.

Lance from Money Life & More presents Passive Income: Not As Passive As You Think – Part 2 – While passive income sounds great, it’s a lot harder to achieve true passive income than it seems. Lance follows up on an earlier post and breaks down a few types of income to determine whether they are truly passive or not.

Bob from ChristianPF presents What is a lifespan calculator and why should you care? – I’m not sure how well these have been tested, and I definitely wouldn’t use it for retirement planning purposes (if it says I expected to die at age 70, should I retire earlier and not save as much? That’s probably risky), but it can serve as a welcome wake-up call.

VH from Funny about Money presents Credit Cards: Will a Use Surcharge Change Your Habits? – With the recent change allowing merchants to charge more to those paying with credit, we could soon be encouraged to pay in cash. Will we still pay with plastic if the only advantage is not having to carry around coins (and not benefits from cash back rewards)?


Drew from Objective Wealth presents Do You Know the Difference Between a Job and a Career?, and says, “Understanding that your attitude towards your work determines whether you are a job or a career holder, and has implications for your wealth and prosperity in the long term.”

Martin from Studenomics presents Completely Random Ways to Make Money in College This Semester, and says, “Creative and interesting ways to make some money in school.”

Green Panda Treehouse presents How to Find Work When Your Resume Sucks, and says, “We help you find work when your resume just does not add up.”

Mike from The Financial Blogger presents Do You Have to Actually Enjoy Your Job?, and says, “Does money matter to you more than the actual work?”

John from Wallet Blog presents Should Small Business Owners be Worried About Their Money in December 2012?, and says, “Will small business bank accounts still be Federally insured at the end of the year? What could it mean for the local banking industry if the extension is not passed? Is it best for small business owners to transfer funds to larger banks or is that a misconception?”


CF from The Outlier Model presents Paying for special occasions, and says, “When you’re trying to stick to a budget and save money, one of the biggest issues that can come up is a special occasion. A wedding, a birthday, a baby shower… these things can all wreak havoc on your budget unless you plan carefully.”

Nicole from Nicole and Maggie: Grumpy Rumblings of the Half Tenured presents It’s nice to be able to throw money at problems, and says, “Nicole and Maggie discuss how 1. it’s nice to have extra money on hand to smooth over life’s little problems and 2. how they go to the point they could do that.”


Echo from Boomer & Echo presents 35 Ways To Save Money, and says, “We all know there are plenty of ways to save money, but some things are so obvious you can classify them as common sense rather than smart spending.”

Miranda from Wallet Hub presents Is It Worth It To Pay Someone Else to Complete Some of Your Everyday Tasks?, and says, “Is time worth your money? When considering paying someone else to do the things you can do yourself, you should consider a few things first.”

mbhunter from Mighty Bargain Hunter presents What would happen if the military just “went shopping”?, and says, “The military has a plan every single day. Imagine if they didn’t! Why shop without one, either?”

Money Beagle presents 7 Tips For Having A Green Lawn In Warm, Dry Weather, and says, “With this heat, is it possible to have a green lawn without it costing you a fortune?”

Real Estate

Neal Frankle from Wealth Pilgrim presents How Much House Can I Afford Calculator, and says, “Looking for an early Hanukkah or Christmas gift? Well here’s your very own, easy to use, “How Much House Can I Afford Calculator!””

Joe from Personal Finance By The Book presents House Flip #2 – Before and After Photos, and says, “As promised, I am keeping you abreast of each house my son and I flip. After selling our first house flip last fall, we started looking for “House Flip #2″, which we purchased in March of this year. We learned a lot with our first flip adventure, and we have tried to apply these lessons…”

Philip from PT Money Personal Finance presents Rental Repairs: Fixing Up My Rental Property, and says, “PT breaks down the costs of repairing and cleaning his rental property, the time invested, and offers some tips for do-it-yourself repairs.”

Debt & Credit

Adam Hagerman from Walking To Wealth presents Is Using Your Credit Card a “Threat To Thrift”?, and says, “Are there really people out there who just head to the local electronics store and stick 10-20% more goods in their cart just because they are using credit? Are they just buying things on a whim? People cannot be that moronic, right?”

Jeff Rose from Good Financial Cents presents Credit Score Scale: What is a Good Credit Score?, and says, “You know that your credit score is one of the most important bits of financial information about you. Where you fall on the credit score scale is often considered to be a way of determining what kind of person you are when it comes to managing your money.”

Peter from Bible Money Matters presents Getting Out of Debt: Top Strategies, Programs and Ideas to Help You Get Back in the Black, and says, “Today I want to take a brief look at some top strategies for getting out of debt. We’ll look at what things you should be doing if you want to get out of debt, explore strategies to help you dump your debt, and do a quickie review of some of the popular debt reduction programs available.”

Money Management

Mike from Experiglot presents Experiment With Attending a New Conference, and says, “How you can benefit from attending a conference in the near future.”

Edward Antrobus presents Why I’m Not That Interested in More Money, and says, “At all income levels, the average person describes well off as more than what they have. It’s a dangerous game and I want out of it!”

Miss T. from Prairie Eco Thrifter presents Ways Going Green Can Improve Your Health – and Save You Money, and says, “Taking green actions can benefit more than just the environment. Going green can help improve your health, and save you money.”

Dan Meyers from Your Life Their Life presents Why I use a credit card + 3 people who shouldn’t, and says, “Dave Ramsey says to cut up your credit card… that’s true for some people, but I still use mine.”

Finance, Economy, & Taxes

Investor Junkie presents President Obama – Who Built My Business?!?, and says, ““If you’ve got a business – you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.” – Barack Obama

President Obama that statement is an outright insult to any small business owner, and I’m offended by that comment. President Obama you have absolutely no clue what it takes to start, and run, a business.”

Glen Craig from Free From Broke presents What is LIBOR and the Scandal that Rocked It?, and says, “LIBOR is on many minds as we hear details of a huge LIBOR rate-fixing scandal reveal themselves. But what is LIBOR? How does LIBOR affect us?”

Teacher Man from My University Money presents Is Term the Right Life Insurance For You?, and says, “There’s always been a debate as to whether or not term insurance or some form of “whole” life insurance is the best kind to have. There are those who are quick to say, “buy term and invest the difference”, but there’s also a strong case for buying whole life to lock in the premium while you’re young and the premium will be much more manageable as you get older.”

FMF from Free Money Finance presents A Real-Life Example of Why You Need to Be Careful What You Put on Social Media Sites, and says, “We’ve talked previously about being careful about what you post online because of the career implications it can have. It was all theory for me at that point. But now I’ve seen a real-life example of what can happen if you’re not careful with your “personal” content and I thought you’d be interested in it.”

Bret from Hope to Prosper presents The Plight of Small Business in America, and says, “This week has brought a big political backlash against President Obama for saying, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that.” The President should have chosen his words more wisely and small business owners have every right to be upset about this comment.”


Karl Marrion from WiseStockBuyer presents A Guide to Long Term Investing, and says, “Some of the richest people in the world made their fortune through long term investing, so surely it’s worth a look?”

Clint from Accumulating Money presents 11 Things Your Broker Won’t Tell You, and says, “Brokers also have their own interests, at the top of which is a desire to make money. All too often, the clients’ needs and desires come second to those of the investment broker.”

J.P. from Novel Investor presents How To Avoid Securities Fraud, and says, “People fall prey to investment scams, Ponzi schemes, pyramid schemes, and IPO scams all the time. Here are the best ways to avoid it.”

The Archivist from The Market Archive presents Using Covered Calls to Generate Regular Returns, and says, “If you have your wealth in very safe stocks that appreciate exceptionally slowly, then writing covered calls can be a great way to skim some profit while you wait.”

Dan from ETF Base presents New “Death Cross” Tactical ETF Chases Alpha and Beta, and says, “Check out this new “Death Cross” ETF and see whether it’s trying to beat the market by investing in it.”

Sean Smarty from Grow Money presents 7 Emerging Markets to Invest In.

Geoffrey from Financial Highway presents RRSP vs TFSA, and says, “When Canada introduced the TFSA into the mix of registered and non-registered investment accounts, it made an already difficult decision even harder. How do I allocate my investments between my TFSA, RRSP and non-registered accounts? We’ve prepared a number of examples below to help investors understand the tax treatment of different investment types and the optimal account mix for their portfolio.”

Pierre from Intelligent Speculator presents Sign That Times Are Bad.. Governments Desperately Looking For Revenues…, and says, “Is your government looking for money?”

Robert from The College Investor presents Warren Buffett’s Top 5 Tips for Investing, and says, “While over time he has thrown out a ton of different tidbits on investing, here are the top five tips Warren Buffett has given on investing:”

PK from Don’t Quit Your Day Job presents How Much Would Your IRA Be Worth if You Invested As Much as Mitt Romney?, and says, “I’m just playing around here, but it was a fun thought experiment: if you had invested the maximum allowed in defined contribution plans (as I assume the Romneys did) how would you have performed?”

Young and Thrifty presents What Is an Index and Why Are They Important, and says, “If you don’t know what an Index Fund is…You aren’t alone…”

Jacob from My Personal Finance Journey presents Individual Stocks or Index Funds?, and says, “This post describes Individual Stocks and Index Funds, and provides pros and cons of each in order for the reader to make an informed decision as to which investing option is right for them.”

Earth and Money presents Community Bonds – A Primer, and says, “Community bonds are just what they sound like – bonds issued by local, community organizations (either a non-profit or a co-operative) to local, community investors. The investment funds provide the organization with either money to pay down existing loans that they may have, or to provide start-up capital for a potential project, in exchange for a fixed rate of return.”


Miss Thrifty presents Now We Are Four, and says, “UK blogger Miss Thrifty celebrates her blog’s fourth birthday, with a look back at some popular posts and at how the economy – and our spending priorities – have transformed out of all recognition.”

Roshawn Watson presents What Makes You So Special?, and says, “Your competitive advantage in today’s job market lies in knowing what you do particularly well. Tell me friend, what makes you so special?”

Robert from Entrepreneurship & Life presents 3 Ways Banks are Becoming Entrepreneurial, and says, “According to the dictionary, entrepreneurial means “willing to take risks to make a profit”. Based on the years leading up to the financial crisis, that would be an accurate description of banking practices worldwide. Banks were doing anything they thought they could to make a profit. However, since 2009, it has been rare to see a bank take risks.

Don from My Dollar Plan presents How to Calculate the Total Cost of a New Car, and says, “I am in the market for a new car purchase. I’ve narrowed my choices down to two cars: a diesel hatchback and a hybrid hatchback. While the sticker prices for both cars are nearly the same, there are many other factors that you have to consider when purchasing a car. Read on to find out exactly what!”

Squeezer from Personal Finance Success presents How to save on college textbooks, and says, “I am a part-time college student, so I look for any ways to save money that I can. One of the ways I do this is by saving as much as I can when purchasing textbooks.”

Carnival of Money Pros: Daylight Savings Edition

It is my pleasure to be able to host the Third Weekly Carnival of Money Pros. You may remember The Money Pros group from our stock picking contest a few months ago, and it turn out I’m doing pretty well in that, I’m in second place so far!

This is your friendly reminder to change your clocks forward an hour today. Also, set extra alarms, iPhones have a history of getting mixed up around this time of year. And there’s nothing worse than skipping an alarm clock on Monday morning!

Check out all the wonderful entries, there’s enough reading here to get you through the week! Enjoy!

Dr. Dean @ The Millionaire Nurse Blog writes The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo: Ten Personal Finance Lessons! – You can find lessons and re-enforce important principles of personal finance anywhere if you take the time to look. In the best selling trilogy by Steig Larson, I found quite a few interesting lessons.

Busy Exec @ The “Busy Executive” Money Blog writes Looking to profit from the next real estate bubble – In my opinion, it’s never a time to dive headfirst into completely unfamiliar territory where a significant amount of hard earned capital could be lost. If you’ve never held a hammer, changed a light bulb, or evaluated a property, don’t believe that you can purchase and rehab a house back to market value this upcoming weekend. You must prepare to succeed.

Ken Faulkenberry @ AAAMP Blog writes 32 Investment Rules and Strategies to Make You a Better Investor – These 32 investment rules and strategies will reduce your number of mistakes, help you take prudent risks that favor positive returns, and make you a better investor.

Jen @ Master the Art of Saving writes Save Money: Embrace Free – One of the best ways to save money is to take advantage of free stuff. It sounds like a no-brainer, but sometimes our perception is a bit skewed when it comes to this notion. Why do we sometimes perceive something that’s free to be of lesser quality than what we pay money for?

Jeremy Waller @ Personal Finance Whiz writes Sometimes It’s The Simple Things in Life – There’s the saying that the best things in life are free. Recently we’ve cut out budget way back to help meet some of our financial goals this year. That means our fun budget is pretty thin right now. But that didn’t stop us from having a great weekend.

Don @ MoneySmartGuides writes The Government Supports The Rich With Foreclosures – The US Government has tried many times to thwart off the rise of foreclosures from the bursting of the housing bubble. They came out with catchy programs: HARP, HAMP, and now HARP2. Sadly, none of these tricks worked.

MR @ Money Reasons writes Working Two Jobs At Once – Making Twice As Much – My buddy worked two jobs last year at the same time and made twice as much money as he could have normally made by working only one job. Read his story!

Suba @ Broke Professionals writes 5 Things to Consider Before Deciding To Pay off Debt or Invest – Owning a home with a white picket fence is beginning to cost more than we expected, not to mention consumerism that is brainwashing us to get the latest deal on a gadget we don’t even need. Because of the way society is shaped, many of us end up in loans we never would have gotten into if it wasn’t for the normalcy we attribute to it.

Erika @ Newlyweds on a Budget writes Paying off my student loans – Pay off student loans faster to save money on interest and get out of debt faster.

Crystal @ Budgeting in the Fun Stuff writes Spent $1000 in 24 hours, Ouch! – We bought a new desk, a new office chair, and a new tablet (Asus Transformer).

Ashley @ Money Talks Coaching writes We Applied for a Mortgage Refinance – Well, after much discussion and back and forth we finally applied to refinance our mortgage! We have a rate of 3.875% locked in and we have submitted all our paperwork so now we wait and see what they have to say.

101 Centavos @ 101 Centavos writes Canadian Natural Resources and the Ecology of Business – In my day job, I have to scour the planet for the cheapest/best/safest companies to manufacture our company’s products. This gives me a unique insight on companies.

KT @ Personal Finance Journey writes Why We Decided Not to Buy a House…. – Many people think that homeownership is the American dream, but I disagree. I’m a proud renter, and it’s not that I can’t afford a house – I can actually afford a really nice, big house. I just choose to rent a nice big house instead. Here’s why…

Eddie @ Finance Fox writes Do You Budget? – Prior to budgeting I spent money I didn’t have because I didn’t want to feel deprived of anything. I wanted to experience life to the max. I always found a way to justify the purchase to myself, and bought whatever I wanted in the end. Obviously I didn’t think about the repercussions and after years of being in debt I woke up and realized the mess I had created.

Luke @ Learn Bonds writes What does GM know about savings bonds? – What do you do if you make more cars they people want to buy? A short-term solution is to discount the car through big rebates . .

Kevin @ Thousandaire writes My Girlfriend Signed Up for PerkStreet – The PerkStreet Rewards Checking Account is a great way to earn rewards for debit card purchases, and doesn’t charge a monthly fee. It’s a great account.

Evan @ My Journey to Millions writes My March 2012 Net Worth Update – From January 2011 to February 2012 my net worth has increased 95.30% – I think next month will finally be the month where I double my net worth!

krantcents @ KrantCents writes The 3 G’s of Success – The 3 G’s of Success is the Seventh in a series of articles to help you reach your goal. What are your goals? I know you thought about it! You know, it is your dream, wish or resolution you made! Before you can get to where you want to be, you need to know where you have been.

LaTisha @ Financial Success for Young Adults writes The Hierarchy of Financial Aid – Financial aid packages such as grants, scholarships and work-study are considered -free- money that does not have to be repaid. Learn about money for college.

SFB @ Simple Finance Blog writes The Not-So-Simple Way To Buy Savings Bonds – I thought the government’s new method to buy savings bonds was supposed to make the process simpler? Why I find fault with the TreasuryDirect system.

Tushar @ Start Investing Money writes The Golden Rule of Smart Investing: Pay Yourself First – It is incredible how many people live from paycheck to paycheck. It might be the way of millions of people, but it isn’t the smart way. It certainly doesn’t make life easy when it comes to investing for your future. If you put everyone and everything else first financially, you won’t have any money left by the end of each month to invest in something for you. Get smart! – pay yourself first!

Dana @ Not Made of Money writes 8 Reasons Why You Should Not Transfer Your Student Loan Debt to a Credit Card – The average American college student graduates from college with $25,000 in student loan debt according to CNN. That student loan debt can be repaid in 10 to 20 years. Often, if you stretch it out over 20 years you may have a more manageable monthly payment, but you will spend nearly as much on interest as on the loan itself.

Daisy @ Add Vodka writes How Different Debt Relief Strategies Affect Your Credit – There are multiple options for getting relief for your debts. Depending on your specific situation, some debt relief strategies will work better than others. Many times consumers will avoid their debts because they do not know all of the options!

Dividend Ninja @ The Dividend Ninja writes Using Dividends For Passive Income In Retirement – written by Hank Coleman My father-in-law was a bank executive for over thirty years at a large regional bank in the United States, and he amassed quite a bit of his company’s stock through options over his career. Now, in addition to his pension, he also has quarterly dividends that support him in retirement. That is the beauty of dividends. They are truly a passive income stream.

FG @ Financial God writes Why are Manufacturing Jobs Leaving the US? – There’s a neat post on just why manufacturing has been leaving the U.S. to other countries in drove. Why is this? Is it cause of wages? High costs? Perhaps excessive regulation and cronyism has something to do with it.

A Blinkin @ Funancials writes I Love Bank of America And Their New Fee Schedule – When you read this title you probably thought I was being sarcastic, but I wasn’t. I know a lot of America is outraged over Bank of America’s announcement this morning to revise their fee schedule, but I’m not jumping on the bashing bandwagon. I happen to love what they’re doing.

Aloysa @ My Broken Coin writes Do You Know Why You Spend Money? – If you think that shopaholics want to go shopping all the time, you are wrong. The urges to run to the blissful place that I call The Mall come and go in waves. Usually it happens on days when I am stressed and feel vulnerable. Here is a list of reasons we spend money.

Amanda L Grossman @ Frugal Confessions writes Myths and Rituals that Perpetuate the Mystery and Power of Money – Early Saturday morning after several bouts of tossing and turning I decided to go to the living room and grab my laptop for a little flow-of-consciousness

PITR @ Passive Income To Retire writes Proof Owning Blogs is More Profitable than Staff Writing – Ever wondered if owning blogs is more profitable than staff writing? Find out how long it takes to earn more money.

Money Cone @ Money Cone writes The Many Inventions of Steve Jobs – Steve Jobs was a visionary, a technologist, husband, father and an inventor. Jobs is listed on 342 patent applications, either as an inventor or a co-inventor ranging from computer software to staircases. Here are some of his other inventions:

Beating Broke @ Beating Broke writes Reader Questions: IRAs, 401ks and Dividends – Reader David asked a question about IRAs, 401ks and dividends. Here is my answer. What are your thoughts?

Wayne @ Young Family Finance writes Affordable Modes of Transportation – Affordable modes of transportation may seem rare, but they really aren’t that hard to find.

Jon Rhodes @ Affiliate Tips writes What is the best affiliate program? – This article talks about the best affiliate programs that suit you and your online business.

Jon the Saver @ Free Money Wisdom writes Top 10 Dream Retirement Locations on the Cheap – Retiring in a tropical paradise doesn’t have to cost much. Check out these top ten retirement locations that will leave your wallet alone.

Jeffrey @ Money Spruce writes Multiple Bank Accounts: Is More Better or Worse? – Opening multiple bank accounts can be better for organizations, but it can also be confusing, too.

Hank @ Money Q&A writes Ten Ways To Cut Costs On Moving Expenses – Moving is expensive, but that does not mean that there are not ways to cut costs. You can save a lot of money on your move by planning ahead and thinking outside of the box a little.

Corey @ Steadfast Finances writes 5 Inflation Survival Tips That Will Save You Money – Learn about 5 inflation survival tips that will help you save money.

Corey @ 20s Finances writes Jobs in College – Part 2 – Are you looking for the best jobs in college? It’s hard to say which one is the best job in college, but it is clear that having a job in college has its benefits as I discussed last week . What are the job opportunities available to college students? What do certain jobs offer to college students? These are all questions that college students have. I’m here to help change that.

YFS @ Your Finances Simplified writes Hiring A Financial Planner? 5 Good Reasons Why You Should – Your finances is something that you should always get in order. After all, much of your future and your family’s depend on the financial decisions that you make in life when you were younger.

Jason @ Work Save Live writes Does Fear Control Your Life? – What’s Holding You Back? Why are you scared to take risk – the risk of following a new career path, pursuing a dream job, starting a website or blog and sharing your story? Why are you scared to test your limits and challenge the things that you think you’re capable of?

Shaun @ Smart Family Finance writes Why It Is Time To Invest In Your Family – Here are a few ways to invest in your family and produce beneficial financial results that could protect them in the long term

John @ Married (with Debt) writes Make a Monthly Debt Budget: Rule 3 – A debt budget spreadsheet puts everything in one place, keeps you focused, and prevents missed or late payments.FREE spreadsheet inside!

MMD @ MyMoneyDesign writes Is 2 Percent the New Safe Retirement Withdrawal Rate? – Are you planning to withdrawal 4% from your nest egg in retirement? What if I told you some analysts think 2% may be a more appropriate figure. Let’s calculate the numbers and see for ourselves.

D.J. @ The Family Wallet writes Finding Inexpensive and Free Activities for Your Family to Enjoy – Admission to amusement parks and zoos, accommodations, and travel expenses can add up in a hurry, especially when you take the kids along. Even less expensive pursuits can cost us more than we realize over time. But with a little imagination, we can find free alternatives to these activities. Here are a few examples.

Kyle @ The Penny Hoarder writes How to Buy Your First Rental Property – Buying an investment property is a big deal. It is a huge asset for most individuals, and it requires work. Many individuals actually view owning a rental property as being more similar to a small business than an investment, because it involves tenants (customers) and vendors.

Jester @ The Ultimate Juggle writes Do You Spend Enough Time on Yourself? – Do you need more time to relax? Find out how to maximize your efficiency and create time for yourself.

Ryan @ Early Retirement Investments writes Finding Money for Retirement When Your Paycheck is Small – Even if you do not have a large paycheck you should still try to save some money for retirement. Here are some of my best tips.

Steve @ Money Infant writes A Tax on ALL Sinners – A sin tax a regressive tax that is levied on items considered to be vices such as alcohol, tobacco and gambling. These taxes can also be called a sumptuary tax.

Investor Junkie @ Investor Junkie writes What Is Profit Margin? – Looking at the financial position of the company can help you figure out whether or not a stock is likely to make a good buy for your portfolio. One of the fundamentals to consider is profit margin. There are three common profit margin considerations that can provide you with helpful insight regarding a company:

Miss T. @ Prairie Eco Thrifter writes Learn How to Eat Healthy on a Budget – More people would eat organic if it didn’t come with such a high price. This doesn’t have to be the case. Here is a list of foods that you don’t have to buy organic (some people refer to it as the clean 15) as they are not heavily sprayed with pesticides making them healthier options.

Marie @ Money Spending Mommy writes Vacation Planning on a Budget – If you’re strapped for cash and you’re dreaming of an out-of-town vacation this year, there are plenty of ways to make your wish come true. If you’re willing to think out of the box and sacrifice a few luxuries, you can save a bundle while still enjoying a fun trip. Try these strategies to enjoy your vacation on a budget:

Matt @ Living in Financial Excellence writes Embrace the Difficulties in Your Life – Remember: You can continue to run from your wild beasty problems and blame them for your lack of progress, or you can tame them and use their strengths to help move you toward your goals. It’s your call.

Linsey @ 1099 Mom writes Small Business and Your Credit Score – With so many companies offering to show you a free credit score, it may be confusing to know the importance of it. If you are a small business owner who is in the start up phase, or one who may need to expand your business soon, it’s an important thing to understand.

J.P. @ Novel Investor writes Best Stocks For A Cashless Society – Globalization and technology improvements have made the cashless society trend a potential reality. Here we cover several stocks that may profit from the continuing tend.

Teacher Man @ My University Money writes RRSP Contributions vs Paying Off Credit Card – After the seasonal marketing push for RRSP contributions that we recently seen exert its pressures the last few weeks, it struck me just how single-minded the whole thing seemed to be.

Dave Hilton @ Debt Black Hole writes Are Checks An Archaic Financial Tool? – How often do you write a check? Probably not as often as you used to.

Kari @ Small Budget Big Dreams writes Hired Help: Lazy or Economical? – The BF and I have recently been debating whether we should hire a housekeeper. Is, “outsourcing” our cleaning lazy? Or a smart economic decision?

Steve @ The Loonie Bin writes Round Two: the RRSP – Here’s the low down on the RRSP; is it right for you?

Glen Craig @ Free From Broke writes The Best 0% Purchase Credit Cards – Want to make a large purchase? Finding the best 0% purchase credit card offer can help you make your purchase as well as gain some nice benefits, payment terms, and more.

Steve Zussino @ Grocery Alerts writes 20 ways to collect Air Miles Rewards Faster – Air Miles is one of the best reward programs but many people do not know what the secrets are on the Air Miles program and I wanted to share 20 ways you can collect Air Miles faster with Air Miles secrets

Melissa @ Fiscal Phoenix writes Fundamentals Put the Fun in Investing – Most investment managers and mutual fund managers use fundamental analysis to pick stocks for their portfolio. If you are interested in learning how to choose great stocks, then fundamental analysis is the perfect place to get started.

Jeffrey Strain @ The Frugal Toad writes 11 Ways to Save Money While Skiing – Whether you ski locally or abroad, saving a few dollars while you’re doing it might help you enjoy more trips per year and have a better time while you’re there. Here’s a list of several ways to keep costs down when you go. Hopefully you’ll find one or two you haven’t thought of.

Suba @ Wealth Informatics writes Are men financially irrelevant now? – Education and employment statistics point to a clear and growing dominance in women’s status at home and in the workplace. Are men primed for a comeback or have the old rules changed for good? Are men financially irrelevant now?