Favorite Posts, Mentions, and Top Comments Week of 22December2013

As I told you last week, we drove to my parents’ place on Sunday for our Christmas break.  Since then, we’ve been:

  • spending time with family
  • cooking
  • hanging out with friends
  • reading (I’m working on Gulp by Mary Roach, but I have two more books to get to after that!)
  • watching movies (47 Ronin and Elysium, and some older ones) and Modern Family
  • napping
  • helping my mom with some of her errands


One of the errands we helped with was taking, touching up, and printing our family’s Christmas photo (sent out post-Christmas).  Here’s the photo of my brother, my mom, my dad, my sister, me, and Kyle (with no Photoshopping).




We have not been working at all. Sometimes I even go a whole day without thinking about work!  That might not last too much longer.  I also want to be writing blog posts to get a few in my queue but I haven’t been, though I have plenty of ideas.  It’s been difficult to tear myself away from the TV, actually.  And I’m spending a lot more time cooking/eating than I do in my own home because when I batch-cook it disappears within a day!  I also wanted to spend some time considering a couple new websites I might start, but haven’t done that either.  I think a staycation would have been much more productive, hobbies-wise!


We still have a few more days of break and then we’re going to a wedding on the 1st and then heading back to Durham.



Posts I Liked


Cash Rebel argues for lifestyle inflation (or, as I call it, lifestyle increases).


Jon from Money Smart Guides illustrates the power of compounding raises in comparison with yearly bonuses.


Despite Johnny Moneyseed‘s exhortation to not make New Year’s resolutions, I enjoyed reading Frugal Portland‘s 2014 resolutions and Retire by Forty‘s 2013 review and 2014 resolutions.


Bridget from Money After Graduation describes her time in business school through GIFs.





Matt Becker from Mom and Dad Money included The Thinking Person’s Guide to Dave Ramsey: Realistic Wealth Building in his Cool Stuff Around the Web #20.





Short-Term Challenges to Speed Debt Repayment was featured in the Carnival of Money.



Top Comment


While the other commenters were shocked by Dave Ramsey’s investing advice, Richard stepped in to explain how it is consistent with the rest of Dave Ramsey’s money philosophy: “I think you glossed over perhaps his most important piece of wisdom: that having the freedom to go off-plan and pick from the ETF buffet encourages people to buy and sell and shop around for the best investments. DR would rather you not think about it, because picking investments is on the slippery slope to market timing. This seems entirely consistent with his debt snowball versus avalanche preference — favoring not-screwing-up over maximizing-efficiency… This advice is also consistent with his mantra that your income is your most powerful wealth building tool — he would rather people focus on increasing wage based income than chasing high returns in the stock market.”



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  4. Cash Rebel



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12 Responses to "Favorite Posts, Mentions, and Top Comments Week of 22December2013"

  1. Ashley says:

    That sounds like a super relaxing break! But I agree with you- I think a staycation would be much more productive than staying at my parents house! I got back to NY yesterday and I feel like I did NOTHING the entire past week, ugh!
    Ashley recently posted..Christmas Recap

    1. Emily says:

      It’s hard when you’re thrown out of your normal routine, even if it’s for a positive reason.

  2. Since you don’t have kids. Enjoy it!
    I took this past week off and although I LOVE spending time with the family, it can be tiring.

    What do you do to manage your websites or posts? I’ve been thinking about goals for my blog in 2014 and one of them is to build up a cache of posts that I can use when the rest of life gets to busy. Do you have weekly posting/cache’ing goals?

    I have a spreadsheet that tracks my writing, publishing pace and inventory of unpublished/cached posts, but I’m interested to see if you or anybody else have ways of tracking it that are better.
    MITM@NakedBudgeting recently posted..November Financial Update

    1. Emily says:

      At times I’ve had a couple weeks of posts written in advance and at times I’m writing the night before (like tonight!). Most of the time I have two of the three for the week written by the prior weekend. I’d like to get more ahead, although it seems like every time I do I slack off and waste the margin fairly quickly. I don’t have a better way of tracking – I keep a spreadsheet, too!

  3. Matt Becker says:

    I have to say that I think your Top Comment is letting Dave Ramsey off the hook. It’s perfectly reasonable for him to suggest a one-size-fits-all approach to investing. It’s the not the kind of nuance that would exist in an ideal world, but it’s probably good enough and does fit with the rest of his approach.

    But he could accomplish that in a much less harmful way. Rather than suggesting high-cost, commission-laden products, he could instead recommend something like the LifeStrategy funds offered by Vanguard. That kind of recommendation wouldn’t put as much money in his pockets, but it would provide his followers with a much better chance of reaching their investment goals.

    There’s also no reason he has to tell people to expect 12% returns or to use an 8% withdrawal rate. He could easily adjust those numbers to align more with the reality of the world we live in while still providing a single, streamlined message.

    In other words, I don’t think we can let him off the hook like that. Picking a one-size-fits-all approach I can live with. Picking one that lines his pockets at a huge cost to the people he’s advising I cannot.
    Matt Becker recently posted..Cool Stuff Around the Web #20

    1. Emily says:

      Thanks for your comment and I love that your passion is showing through! Richard was playing a little devil’s advocate with his comment, as I have been doing at times when I’ve discussed Dave Ramsey’s system. But I did appreciate him delving into DR’s psyche enough to connect his investing advice to the principles that underlie his view of money. However, I totally agree with all of your points here on how DR could alter his advice to be better for his listeners and conflict-free for himself. Sadly, I don’t think he’s reading my blog!

      1. Richard says:

        Emily is right. I was attempting to understand what Dave might be thinking, not necessarily justifying his approach. Many of our complaints about his methods stem from them being developed in a bygone era of high interest rates and high cost investments. Dave’s refusal to update his advice is both a feature and a weakness. He wrote it down a long time ago, he recorded it in videos, and he’s not backing down. Principled or stubborn, you decide.

        1. Emily says:

          Great phrasing, Richard. When I was researching the investing post and looking at historical mortgage rates, it did seem to me that his advice was reasonable up until the credit crunch. But we are now in strange times!

  4. Cash Rebel says:

    Emily, your vacation sounds exactly like mine, and it’s incredible. I haven’t thought about work in over a week. I’ve just been eating, hanging out with family/friends, running in the cold, and generally enjoying myself. I also thought I’d dedicate more time to blogging, but maybe that will happen next week, haha. Thanks for linking to my post on lifestyle inflation/increases!
    Cash Rebel recently posted..The truth about lifestyle inflation

    1. Emily says:

      I haven’t worked out AT ALL so that’s one big difference! I actually got a bit more writing time in yesterday so I’m getting back on track. 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful rest of your break!

  5. Sounds like a really nice break. Our trip home to Maine didn’t really turn out the way we’d hoped (we got stuck in the ice storm with no power), but I am still thankful we made it home.

    1. Emily says:

      Yikes! I hope you weren’t too uncomfortable.

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