A Guide To — And The Cost Of — Being A Modern Farmer

“My cousin in North Carolina told me that a farmer only needs two things in her house: a good bed and a good hot shower. She was right.”

Cooking Like A Boss While Unemployed

Even on a limited budget, fancy-pants eats are not out of reach.

The Moral Dilemma Posed by the Mani-Pedi

it’s a small, cheap, accessible luxury in a city where most luxuries are inaccessible to me.

A Practical Mother’s Day

When I was very young, my siblings and I would each buy $1 roses at our church and give them to our mother on Mother’s Day. She found the gesture sweet, but of course, if a seven-year-old gives you anything, you’re going to find it very sweet.

Adoption Fees, Court Costs, Taxes: The Hidden Costs of Same-Sex Parenthood

“The most exciting thing about having DOMA struck down is that our taxes went down by half.”

How A Job-Hopping Latina Does Money

“It just hit me. I don’t have to stay here, I can live and work somewhere else, it’s not the end of the world.”

Paying Me To Go Away: Crowdfunding A Writer’s Residency

I raised the $1,700 I needed in one day.

“What About Presents?”: How My Relationship Changed When We Merged Finances

One of our first discussions about combining our bank accounts was, “What about presents?”

It All Comes Out In The Wash: A Story Of Love And Laundry

Laundry in New York is even worse than regular laundry. You have to locate a laundromat, figure out what kind of money they take, haul your stuff there, come back in time to switch it before some angry weirdo tosses your intimates on the floor, lug it back home, and fold it. It can be a day-long saga and that’s if you have one nearby and it doesn’t require all quarters.

On Doing Everything Right and Still Making the Wrong Decision

Rural areas may have beautiful, inexpensive farmhouses on large plots of land, but they do not have a large influx of people trying to buy houses.

House of Squirrels

I could hear a scratching sound as I moved some of my things into my bedroom from the living room. Matthea nodded. “Yeah, there are squirrels that live in the storage closets.” She gestured to two small doors facing each other on opposite sides of the living room. “Just don’t ever open those doors because then they’ll run out.” I nodded. It was my first apartment and I didn’t know anything about squirrels yet.

The Cost of Terrible Roommates and Getting Justice From ‘Judge Judy’

But soon after my mom moved in with her roommates, she told me that she wasn’t comfortable. The roommates were very neat and nit-picky about household chores. They lectured her about the spots they found on their bowls and plates. They told her they had a history of being overbearing with roommates. After that, my mom started hiding in her bedroom, trying to avoid them at all costs. She told me on the phone that she was planning to move out. I was a little worried, but it never occurred to me that she might be in over her head.

Spiritually Bankrupt: How I Went Broke Trying To Teach Yoga

After the completion of my 500 hours of yoga teacher training, I was entitled to sub at the yoga studio for $25 a class, minus taxes. Most of the classes were early in the morning and late at night, so I sprinted across town from dawn to dark. I stalked pregnant yoga teachers, waiting for them to go on maternity leave.

Moving for a Relationship and Lessons From My Immigrant Parents

In August 2011 I’d just finished a year of wobbly misery in beautiful South Korea—teaching English—and by the end of it I had several thousand dollars and nothing else. I’d gone to Korea to travel and instead found myself in a swirling pool of depression, unable to connect with most of the excited ex-pats I spoke to, and unwilling to do the work to bridge the gap between myself and Koreans. This slow melt of melancholy meant that I rarely went out of my way to spend money on things, which allowed me to save more money than I knew what to do with. By the end I needed a break, so I took those thousands and went away to bum around in Southeast Asia.

How a Legal Secretary Who Paid Off $38,000 in Debt Does Money

Alison (not her real name) is a 27-year-old legal secretary who lives outside of Philadelphia.

How a Canadian Expat Family in Budapest Does Money

Currently our income does match our needs, and we are able to make a bit of savings. It’s all complicated by the fact that both my husband and I are Canadian, and we are currently living in Budapest, Hungary and have been for approximately 4 years.

Secondhand Brawlers

Of the steady accumulation of books in my apartment, I imagine nearly half were acquired at library book sales. This includes calorific comfort reads like the complete works of Flannery O’Connor, Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop, and Isaac Babel (these seasonal sales are lousy with collected volumes). While I purchase some books new, the rest are reaped—due to ongoing financial constraints—from cardboard boxes in library common rooms. (For the sake of self-aggrandizement, let’s call these books “rescues.”)

The Working Life of Gwyned Filling, the ‘Career Girl’ of 1948

On a recent sleepless night around 3 a.m., I bought a bunch of mint-condition LIFE magazines from the spring on 1948 on Ebay. Reading about stuff that was going on in 1948 is good for my 2014-era anxieties, which are currently off the charts. When I consume a news magazine from 1948, I already know what’s going to happen in 1949 and 1950, and beyond; being a detached, omniscient observer feels weirdly reassuring. Also reassuring is the evidence that the world has always been a huge mess, and that maybe some things are improving (very, very slowly). Reading these old LIFE magazines feels so poignant because the writers and subjects within have no idea what lies ahead—they’re all struggling to make some sense of their time and place.

How a Person Who Recently Transitioned Careers Does Money

I quit a pretty well-paying job in marketing at the end of April, kind of on a whim. I had about a year’s worth of money saved up when I did that.

Highlights From A Year of Emotional Spending

Because sometimes the universe is beautiful, near the end of 2014 I found a networking event that combined my love of too much alcohol and my love of pitching billion-dollar business ideas.