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The Gems – My Favorite Posts of February 2013

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I have to admit that I approached this post with a great deal of trepidation. I feel it’s a little presumptuous of me to judge articles from the various PF blogs that I have been reading lately. So I won’t judge. But I did feel that it was definitely worthwhile to pass on some of the posts that I found enjoyable or educational, so I will. Here’s a list, in no particular order, of some of the posts that I consider the Gems of February 2013.

Quick Bathroom Reno Joe at TimelessFinance gives us a quick overview of how he spent $202.26 and gave his bathroom an overhaul with great results. This really shows that you don’t have to spend a lot to give a room a facelift!

A guest posted on ModestMoney, Imaginative Ways to Make Extra Money. Who doesn’t want tips on making extra money? I especially love the “Sell Your Junk” section. I periodically do that myself and usually make out pretty well!

Is Poverty in the United States an Excuse to do Poorly in School? Kim at EyesOnTheDollar writes a good article on the effect of poverty on education in the United States and how the ultimate responsibility is on the parents, regardless of their financial state.

You Live in a Whaa? Daisy at Just Add Vodka  writes about the pro’s and con’s of living in a van, I  guess it’s better than a Big cardboard box!

 Chris at StumbleForward gives us 10 tips on upgrades you may want to consider when building a new home. 10 New Home Upgrades To Consider Before You BuildAdditional recommendations can also be found in the comments. These are all important for the simple reason that most, if not all of them, are a lot easier and less expensive to do when building as opposed to after the fact.

How To Increase Your Yield Through Microloans Here’s a good reminder that there are other alternatives to low rate Money Market Accounts. The concept of micro loans is intriguing and something I’m going to be looking at in the near future.

5 Investing Mistakes That Are Easy to Make John covers five investing mistakes that can cost you big (I’ve made each of them at least once in my investing career). If you’ve read any of my investing articles, you know I’m a maven about protecting your investments!

Paul gives some good advice on managing your personal cash flow on the FrugalToad, How to Manage Your Personal Cash FlowThese are solid and sensible tips worth reading, even as a refresher!

Once The Smoke Clears, Will Marijuana Become The Lifeblood Of The California Economy? No, I don’t smoke pot. But I’ve always looked at the war on the weed as one of the biggest waste of taxpayer dollars since prohibition in the early 20th century. CriticalFinancial gives us a nice view on the potential revenue stream from Marijuana in California.

When Will You Be a Millionaire? Anyone that follows DQYDJ.net knows to expect some fun calculators. Here’s one that will let you figure out when you’ll hit your first million.

5 Things I Would Upgrade If I Were Rich And a nice follow up to knowing when you will hit your first million is a post from J. Money at BudgetsAreSexy about what you might do with it.

Ways to Pay Less Taxes and Save Money A guest post on ClubThrifty with some fundamental tips on saving on your taxes. I gravitate towards tax tips like a moth to aflame and am always open to new ideas (as long as they are legal)

Are Drug Companies Buying Your Doctor’s Opinion? This was a tough one for me, TheFrugalPath had a few posts that I really liked. I ultimately settled on this one as it hits close to home. Every time I see my Doctor he wants to hit me with $500 of new drug prescriptions, and I’m relatively healthy! No thanks, not when the cure is worse than the disease!

Len absolutely cracked me up with his Black Coffee edition Why 100-Trillion Zimbabwe Dollars Doesn’t Go as Far as It Used To at LenPenzo. Len goes through a lot of trouble to get some interesting facts for his Black Coffee editions and I love reading the “debits and credits” section.

Confusion with Precious Metal Pricing Lately I’ve taken an interest in precious metals. FreeMoneyFinance gives us a good comparison of some of options available to buy precious metals and the price differences you can expect to see.

MoneyBulldogUK posed a serious question in MRS BULLDOG, REALLY?. What should he call his wife in his posts? I suggested Queen Bulldog or Queen B, which I think is an excellent name 🙂 . We’re all breathlessly awaiting Mr. and Mrs. Bulldogs final decision. Well Mr. Bullddog?

16 Acts of Kindness: This should warm your cold heart… TheBudgetingTool put this post up, it’s not an article. It’s a series of pictures of random kind acts that are touching. They touched me, really they did! On the other hand, ThebudgetingTool also posted Want to know why I don’t read 95% of PF blogs and posts out there? Because it’s a waste of my time which probably rubbed a lot of people the wrong way. But it made me laugh, a lot! I hope I learned a few things about what  not to do with my blog!

My favorite post of the month comes from Pauline at ReachFinancialIndependence, What I HATE about GuatemalaI’ve read many a post over time but I think this is the first post I have read that was so expressive and powerful in the emotions it conveyed. I appreciate a good read and read this post completely, twice!

Here’s one news article that caught my eye this month. I consider it more newsworthy than the “Sequestration”, it’s about a 19 year old youth who walked ten miles just to get to a job interview. How many times do you think that happens nowadays! 10 Mile Walk for Job Interview

I could have put many more on this list and wish I could have. To be honest, I’m not sure whether I will continue doing this or not. I’d like to do it as I feel there are a lot of good posts that should be shared, but this isn’t as easy as collecting good posts and lumping them together. I feel compelled to add a little thought and commentary to them.  I may just collect exceptionally good articles and publish them periodically regardless of the day or month. I’ll have to decide on that pretty soon!

One thing I should mention, I don’t expect link backs so please don’t feel obligated to do any Although they are appreciated :). I would ask that if anyone is going to link to one of my posts, that you do it because of the merit of what I wrote. Likewise, if you think a post or my writing is horrible (or just plain sucks), write me and let me know. Better yet, tell me what I could have done to make it better! That’s the best criticism and the kind I really appreciate.

Thanks and have a great weekend!

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John Schmoll is a Dad, husband and veteran of the financial services industry. He's passionate about helping people learn from his mistakes so that they can live lives free from the shackles of debt and empowered to make their money work for them. You can check out his other sites: Frugal Rules, for ways to improve your financial literacy; and Sprout Wealth for tips on different ways to make more money. John has been featured on Forbes, Lifehacker, Yahoo Finance and US News & World Report and more. If you're wanting to grow your blog, check out my blog coaching services to see how I can help you take your site to the next level.

28 comments

  1. Thanks so much for the mention Jose, I do appreciate! I can understand the feeling of narrowing down what you want to share with your readers. Have a great weekend sir!
    John S @ Frugal Rules recently posted…Frugal Friday: Blog Posts That Ruled This Week, How is it March EditionMy Profile

  2. I like this link post because it’s not just a bunch of links that you put together to reciprocate. Thanks for the mention 🙂 And Len Penzo is awesome lol
    Joe recently posted…Locking Mailboxes Mitigate Identity Fraud — BP #57My Profile

  3. Thanks so much for mentioning our post! Have a great weekend!
    Holly@ClubThrifty recently posted…VIP Club Roundup – 18th EditionMy Profile

  4. How kind of you to link twice to me!! 🙂 I really appreciate it. I’m so happy you enjoyed both posts.
    Mochimac recently posted…Investing Series: What is the difference between an Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF) and a Mutual Fund (MF)?My Profile

    • Your Welcome! They were both great! One made me misty eyed and the other made me laugh. It also made me think about what I do with The Wise Dollar. Much of what you said is true, although I suspect there are few with the courage to print it!

  5. Thanks so much for including me. It’s an honor.
    Kim@Eyesonthedollar recently posted…Money Memories-Canon Rebel T4i DSLR GiveawayMy Profile

  6. Thanks for the mention Jose. I’m with you on the weed thing. I don’t smoke, but I think we could solve a lot of problems by legalizing it. That’s not to say that there wouldn’t be other issues that come up, but I think it’s a lost cause.
    Justin@TheFrugalPath recently posted…The Frugal Path Blog Update #1My Profile

    • It is a lost cost, when you think of the money spent on enforcing the unenforceable, courts and prisons and then offset that with the revenue potential it should be a no-brainer! But, our government is rash with “no-braininess” so it’s a slow road!

  7. Thank you for the mention Jose, that is a great list, the last post was really interesting.
    Pauline recently posted…Friday recap, bloggers are human and a giveawayMy Profile

    • Your welcome! I really liked that one and thought I would include it, it’s always refreshing to read stories like that. It gives me a little more faith in humanity!

  8. It’s not presumptuous at all – in fact, it’s good to see another writer reviewing the links before he sends his readers there, haha. Glad you enjoyed the calculator.
    PK recently posted…On Shortcuts, Originality… and CasablancaMy Profile

  9. Great posts here, Jose, and access to some new blogs I hadn’t heard about before; thanks!
    Laurie @thefrugalfarmer recently posted…Out on the Town: Good Reads for the Week Ending 3/1/13My Profile

  10. Thanks so much Jose, I appreciate your review of the post too, thank you very much!
    Jim recently posted…What Is Sequestration And How Do I Get Rid Of It?My Profile

  11. Thanks for the mention Jose, really appreciate it! Great collection of posts, I’ll have to add these to my reading list!
    Paul @ The Frugal Toad recently posted…Budgeting Tips: How to Stop Spending Money on Things You Don’t NeedMy Profile

  12. Thanks for all of the great reading material!
    CT – Cashtastrophe recently posted…Enjoyable Reads This WeekMy Profile

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