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Why I’m Front-loading School Costs

For families with even a drop of cash liquidity, the question almost invariably comes up: public school or private? For my three-child family—for whom “liquidity” is ephemeral at best—the answer should be “public.” But I’m not doing it. I feel so...

Separate Money = Sane Marriage

I’m told that sharing a checking account with one’s spouse is practical. I’ll never know—I can’t do it. All relationships have landmines; mine involve money. When I was 13, my father—whom I adored—had an affair with, and married, a woman with...

Gestating...in Style

I’m one of the least fashionable people I know. So how is it possible that I’ve spent over $800 on new clothes lately?  I got pregnant, that’s how. But a handful of new companies are offering mothers-to-be a solution a la Rent the Runway: now you...

Defining Wealth for Kids

I blame Kit, the plucky American Girl Doll who survives the Great Depression. Ever since my daughter Maxine read the Kit books, she’s been asking, “What would happen if Daddy lost his job? Where would we live if the bank took our house?”  And she...

I’m Childless By Choice

I’ve always known that I didn’t want to have kids. When I was a teenager, my friends would talk about getting married and wanting a family. Those comments never resonated for me. People always protested that I should want kids. Friends and family...

Spending Control Tips from a Pro

Americans spend a mind-blowing $1.2 trillion every year on stuff they don’t need. As a professional organizer, I deal with the fallout from shopping gone wrong all the time. Some lessons from closets I’ve seen: DOUBLE TROUBLE: It’s a classic...

To My Husband: What I Really Want for Mom's Day

Save your money. Keep your perfume, tulips, the over-priced cards, and even the breakfast in bed. (Because guess who ends up changing the crumb-encrusted sheets?) What we moms really want for Mother’s Day is relief—for the super-hard,...

Yes, It's OK to Charge Your Kid Rent

So your kid is armed with a shiny new college degree. Next step: moving back home?   “Boomerang kids” are a growing (and not necessarily bad) trend. Returning home has lost its stigma in the recession: 78% of boomerang kids are happy with their...

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