Author Archives: Jennifer Derrick

Justification or the Truth?

I went out to lunch with a sometime friend/mostly acquaintance (it’s a complicated relationship) the other day and she spent the better part of the meal checking her cell phone, texting, and LOL’ing to Facebook posts. At one point she … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Relationships, Saving Money, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

What to Do When a Big Expense Doesn’t Work Out

I went to graduate school with another woman who, let’s just say, didn’t end up with the same happy experience that I did. Very early on in the program, it became clear that the program wasn’t a good fit for … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Do You Want to Be The “Special Case” or The “Success Story?”

When it comes to doing the difficult things in life like saving money, losing weight, getting a better job or more education, creating an emergency fund, or engaging in almost any form of self-improvement, a lot of people claim to … Continue reading

Posted in Budgeting, Debt, Personal Finance | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

13 Important Skills Kids Learn When Running a Business

When I was growing up, there was a girl up the street who was constantly running some sort of business. She did lemonade stands in the summer, bake sales, dog walking, car washing, lawn mowing, rented books and toys to … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Making Money, Personal Finance, Work | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Target Red Card Decision

Lately I’ve been thinking about getting the Target Red debit card. (Note that this post is strictly about the debit card. Target also offers a credit card which offers similar benefits to the debit card, but also acts like a … Continue reading

Posted in Credit Cards, Personal Finance, Saving Money, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Your To Do List May Be Longer Than You Think

I read a lot of books and articles on things like brain science, psychology, productivity, and memory. One thing that tends to come up often as I read is that the brain sees any incomplete task or goal as part … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Saving Money, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

You Can Never Do It All, So Don’t Waste Money Trying

I have a friend who is into Star Wars. I mean really into Star Wars. He has every release of the movies going back to VHS. He has the trading cards, all of the books, the toys going back to … Continue reading

Posted in Entertainment, Personal Finance | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

35 Things to Do on a Rainy Day

Sometimes, when the weather isn’t pretty, it’s tempting to go out and do something that’s going to cost you money. The movies, a restaurant, a bar, a trip to the mall or the bookstore. All of these offer some relief … Continue reading

Posted in Entertainment, Frugal, Personal Finance, Saving Money | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Don’t Believe the Salesmen

We enjoy camping in our RV. As a result, I spend a lot of time on RV-related message boards. This week I saw a sad story. A family wanted to get into the camping lifestyle, so they went to the … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Sometimes Quitting Equals Winning

People like to refer to life as a game or a competition. The winners are the ones who accumulate the most or best things, achieve the most success, or get the most power. That’s the conventional wisdom, anyway, which means … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Work | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

15 Ways to Deal With Emotions Without Retail Therapy

“I’m so messed up. I’m going out for a little retail therapy. Wanna come?” So began a recent conversation with my neighbor. I’ll admit that she’s got every reason to be upset: Her kids are in trouble, there are financial … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

You’re Responsible for Knowing Your Bank Balance

Lately I’ve been trying to decide whether or not to get a Target Red debit card. As much as I shop at Target, the five percent discount would be nice, but there are some drawbacks. I’m still looking into it … Continue reading

Posted in Budgeting, Personal Finance, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Early Retirement Without a Huge Nest Egg

Many people dream of retiring while they’re still young enough to have some fun. Then they look at their bank balance, sigh, and decide that they will have to work until they’re eighty. This might not be true, however. Lots … Continue reading

Posted in Budgeting, Frugal, Personal Finance, Retirement, Saving Money | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Let Them Judge You

A couple of years ago, I had a run in with the neighborhood jerk. A group of neighbors was trying to mobilize against a potential new road that would cut through some properties and lower the value of others. Everyone … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Relationships | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

It’s Dirt Cheap!

The other day I was perusing another personal finance message board when I came upon, of all things, a debate about the merits of Blu-ray versus standard DVD. It came about because someone was mad that they were being “forced” … Continue reading

Posted in Budgeting, Personal Finance, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Discomfort of Being Frugal

I’ve noticed something about myself. I am uncomfortable in high-spending situations. And this is true even when I’m not the one paying. Not long ago, a potential vendor took me to lunch at a swanky restaurant. He was paying, but … Continue reading

Posted in Frugal, Personal Finance | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Workplace Ethics

A couple of weeks ago, I came across a post on another message board from a person who admitted to spending forty percent of his time at work surfing the Internet for personal reasons. He was even going so far … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Work | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Start Thinking

One of the things that gets people into trouble financially (and in a lot of other areas, too) is failing to actually think about what they’re doing. We’re all guilty of putting our lives on autopilot. We buy the brands … Continue reading

Posted in Food / Groceries, Frugal, Personal Finance | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

The 97 Month Car Loan

Lenders rolled out an extra-long-term car loan last week: The 97 month loan. (That’s eight years, folks.) The lenders claim that this is because the average price of a new car has risen to $31,000 and extra-long loans are the … Continue reading

Posted in Cars, Debt, Personal Finance | Tagged , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Earth Day and Frugality

Earth Day is coming. It’s one of those days I actually look forward to each year. While I get sick of the “greenwashing” that the big corporations engage in every year, I do enjoy some of the local celebrations at … Continue reading

Posted in Frugal, Holidays, Personal Finance, Saving Money | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment