Author Archives: Meredith H. Kaiser

The Final Leg of the Journey

Yesterday, as I washed two coffee mugs that my aunt gave me, I said unexpectedly to myself, “These will be among my final things.” An image flashed before me. I saw myself, old and shrunken, seated at a little table … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Relationships, Retirement | 2 Comments

Five Profound Experiences (that Happen to be Free)

There’s a lot more to life than money. Even when you do concentrate on money issues, it should be with the thought of getting your finances in order so you can pursue the experiences in life that you want. Yet … Continue reading

Posted in Entertainment, Relationships | Leave a comment

Un-Joneses of the World, Speak Up!

Not only do I not give a hoot about keeping up with the Joneses, I would like to start a movement of the Un-Joneses. I want to influence people to look at my life and decide that they want to … Continue reading

Posted in Frugal, Personal Finance, Saving Money | 11 Comments

The Timeless Wisdom of Dr. Seuss For Holiday Entertainment

If you knew that a friend busted their budget in order to invite you over for dinner, would you enjoy the dinner? Probably not. Keep this thought in mind when you entertain. When preparing for dinner guests, wondering, “What will … Continue reading

Posted in Food / Groceries, Frugal, Holidays, Saving Money | 2 Comments

How Much Have You Earned In Your Lifetime?

It is common to pay lots of attention to unexpected expenses, through whining and commiserating with others. But look at the bright side; isn’t there sometimes, unexpected income? Maybe your perception of the surprise influx is what keeps you from … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance | 7 Comments

You’re Ugly, Poorly Dressed & Uncool — Basically, a Loser

I, like every other teenager in America, learned about subliminal messages in high school. Determined not to be influenced against my will, every time I entered a dark movie theater I would steel myself against advertisers’ sly tactics. I was … Continue reading

Posted in X Files | 11 Comments

You Can’t Afford It

I saw “DWI — You can’t Afford It” written on road signs along Interstate 40 as we passed through Texas on our recent vacation. What an interesting angle, I thought. I guess that since the fact that the risk of … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance | 8 Comments

Financial (And Other) Lessons I Learned on the Road

My husband and I just returned from a 17 day, 5,500-mile road trip westward from our home in South Carolina. Even though 4.5 million visit the Grand Canyon every year, we still felt like bold adventurers because it was all … Continue reading

Posted in Food / Groceries, Personal Finance, Saving Money, Travel | 7 Comments

What Not to Scrimp On

I’m cheap and proud of it, even when my friends tease me about it. Though, there are some things that even I have learned are not worth scrimping on. Here are four of them: Therapy: I have several friends who … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Saving Money, Shopping | 14 Comments

Straight Talk From a (Former) Insurance Salesperson

As a former insurance salesperson, I have attended countless classes on the subject of how to motivate clients to buy life and disability insurance. However, I remain sympathetic to the fact that many of you refuse to buy this coverage … Continue reading

Posted in Insurance | 8 Comments

Women, Your Finances Are Your Responsibility

The burning question I have is why do so many women neglect their financial lives? Is it fear? Is it lack of interest? Do you assume that someone else will handle this? If so, why do you believe that your … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance | 15 Comments

The Making of a Cheapskate

What makes some people spendthrifts and others tightwads? My undergraduate biology degree requires that I frame the question in terms of “Nature or Nurture?” I wonder about my grandmother who lived through the depression? Did a frugal nature simply allow … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Relationships | 7 Comments

How My Big Mouth Saves Me Money

Instead of mumbling, “What a rip off” to yourself as you walk out of a place of business, tell the business owner or manager what has you steamed. Companies who deserve your business will listen. Here are three positive experiences, … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Saving Money | 9 Comments

Are You Financially Compatible Enough to Marry?

Women, in addition to spending hours poring over encyclopedic bridal magazines, I wish you would spend that same amount of time with your future spouse talking over these important points before you decide if you two should get married at … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Relationships | 6 Comments

Shopping Doesn’t Make You Thin, Beautiful and Popular

I cringe every time I hear a woman list shopping as one of her hobbies. It’s usually said with a coy smile or a giggle as if she is trying to look like a thirteen-year-old girl. If a woman makes … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Shopping | 7 Comments

There is No Such Thing as Divorce Insurance – Why Financial Ignorance is Far From Bliss

When I sold life insurance, I fantasized about shaking the shoulders of women who responded to a financial question with, “Oh, I don’t know any of that stuff. My husband makes the money. I just spend it.” Outwardly, I remained … Continue reading

Posted in Insurance, Personal Finance, Relationships | 10 Comments

Extreme Makeover – Leftovers Edition

Leftovers used to make me gag. Unfortunately, I was too cheap to eat out frequently, and too lazy to cook a completely new meal every night. This caused internal conflicts. I had to find creative ways to enjoy eating at … Continue reading

Posted in Food / Groceries, Saving Money | 4 Comments

Romance is Free

Remember in the movie, The Firm, after everything has gone horribly wrong, the wife (Jeanne Tripplehorn) reminds the husband (Tom Cruise) how happy they were back when they were broke and enjoyed take-out from a carton? I don’t believe that … Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Relationships, Saving Money | 5 Comments

Necessities You Can Live Without

One simple way to save money is to keep your fixed costs low. In order to do this, you must first asses each of your regular expenses and see what subjective value it has for you. There are many items … Continue reading

Posted in Cars, Personal Finance, Saving Money | 10 Comments

Financial (and Life) Lessons I Learned as a Kid

How much does it cost to raise happy children who go on to be productive citizens? My husband and I decided not to be parents since our few surviving houseplants have to spell out H2O — like the Village People … Continue reading

Posted in Entertainment, Personal Finance, Relationships | 7 Comments