Weekly Roundup – Financial Literacy Edition

April is Financial Literacy Month, and this year we need to really emphasize the importance of it more than ever.  If you notice, I’ve been featuring a number of “kids and money” themed guest posts and advertisers because I believe educating our youth in the world of personal finances is our best shot at righting this economic ship.  After all, this will all be our childrens’ and grandchildrens’ mess to inherit someday – let’s hope they do a better job than we did.

You may notice a couple new additions to the weekly roundups.  In addition to the “Fab Five” and “Best of the Rest” links, I also plan to mention a “Website Discovery of the Week” and some “Frugal Odds and Ends.”  I’m on the receiving end of many emails from people passing along great information, but it does not always fit in a post.  I’ll start mentioning the most helpful or interesting finds here.

The Fab Five

Rethinking the American Dream.  “Freedom from want” is something we should all stop and reflect on.  What exactly does it mean?  It boils down to contentment – being happy with the things we have and who we are.  As Ron eloquently puts it, “We need to transition from buying and having to being and doing.”  Well said. (@The Wisdom Journal)

Making a Choice and Moving On.  Often times we are paralyzed by the various options a major decision presents to us.  Back in 2004 I decided to leave my job, my hometown, sell our house and relocate for a new beginning (all this while my wife was in her final trimester of pregnancy with our son).  It was a stressful time, but we analyzed the decision, made the decision and moved on.  I’m glad we did.  (@Brip Blap)

7 Ways to Attack Your Monday Morning Stress.  And I thought the only way to eliminate “Monday Morning Stress” was to quit your day job.  Thankfully, Sara has provided some excellent tips for making Mondays feel a little less like…well…Mondays.  I plan to put these in to practice Tuesday through Friday, too! (@On Simplicity)

What Fourth-Graders “Know” About Money.  I really enjoyed this post from a teacher who returned to the classroom in the hopes he could share some real-world experience with young people.  Turns out, kids think a lot like us adults when it comes to subjects like money, debt and advertising. (@Get Rich Slowly)

The Hows and Whys of Our Car Purchase: A 2009 Toyota Prius.  This may not sound like a newsworthy post – just another blogger sharing his story about buying a car.  Then you might ask why it has attracted nearly 200 comments.  Well, probably because it was a new car, and in the world of personal finance blogging that is a Cardinal sin.  I’m sure you know how I feel about it – good for Trent.  He thoroughly analyzed the decision, took into account generous new car financing options and incentives, environmental (and personal budget) impact, etc.  Would I buy a new car?  Maybe.  Probably not.  But why excoriate someone else for choosing how to spend his money? (@The Simple Dollar)

Best of the Rest

Website Discovery of the Week

KidsMealDeals.com.  While I don’t recommend eating out often, we do try to budget for a meal or two out per month because let’s face it, who wants to cook every single night of the week?  Besides, eating out is as much about the experience as it is the food.  So if you are eating out on a budget like us, take a look at KidsMealDeals.com for restaurants that offer “meal deals” to kids on particular nights of the week.  Thanks to ThriftyParents for retweeting this one.

Frugal Odds and Ends

Talk money with Jean Chatzky.  Jean Chatzky, financial editor of NBC’s “Today” show, and columnist for the New York Daily News, is hosting a financial Q&A Event today, Thusday April 2, 2009 at 3:00pm.  Click the link for more details.

Walgreens Clinics Offer Free Medical Care for Unemployed, Uninsured Workers. Read carefully as there are a couple conditions that must be met before you can receive free care.  I like the idea of these clinics popping up for routine medical care rather than waiting for hours at a doctor’s office or ER.


  1. These articles are a killer collection — more like a “Rough Guide for Financial Literacy Month.” Especially the article on how to attack morning stress, not just because of the demonstrated link between stress and debt through published research, but also since stress makes being productive during the day that much harder.

    What do you think about simplifying one’s life as a strategy to get out of debt?