@Beans I had Zillions and Muse, and Cricket, too! I was actually just thinking about Zillions the other day, though I couldn't remember the name. My sister and I were talking about how important it was to our parents that we be careful with money, and I suddenly realized that they must have subscribed me to Zillions partly to try to instill that in me (and also probably to keep me from asking for toys/video games/junk food). Off to read the article--I got so excited that I scrolled right down to the comments.
@Sloane Yeah, in addition to having college paid for, I think my sister and I have some sort of fund/bond set aside for whenever we have a cause that both we and our parents think is worthy (a kid, grad school, a house)--I think between $10,000-$20,000. And then our grandmother has randomly given each of us about that much in the past year or so. My mom has been adamant that I tell as few people as possible about it because you never know how people will react. When I told two very close friends, to explain how I'd now be able to afford to move to their city, she got a bit upset. I now try to live solely off my tiny salary + side jobs in that expensive city, but it's been a bit awkward when friends with the same job as I have assume that I'm as broke as they are or, when I mentioned fronting hotels/tickets when my parents visited, ask how I have that much money available. I am so, so grateful for my parents' frugality and generosity and the security and freedom the gifts have given me. But it is also weird to have something be such a huge influence on my life (since otherwise I would have less than no savings) and not be able to talk about it with anyone outside of my family. (Well, and Billfold comments!)
@awk a. Hire a landscaper, b. hire a gutter-cleaner(?), c. hire a housecleaner, d. get better roommates or none at all, d. take taxis everywhere. I should become a lifestyle consultant to the rich.
@angry little raincloud Same here! When I moved into my miniscule (100 sq ft!) apartment, I searched online for tips about how to organize things or clever design features. And then realized that most sites' idea of a miniscule apartment was literally at least 3x the size of my apartment and that their tips were to completely remodel the apartment with top-of-the-line super-compact furniture and appliances.
This is lovely. Our old dog was a shepherd mix (the best kind of dog!), and the debate over when to put her down was agonizing because she never got deathly ill, just gradually declined. My family now has a 9-year-old pitbull who got his first real home in late 2011. I think he once had abusive owners based on his fear of certain things and his age, but when the shelter got him, he'd been a stray for who knows how long. It makes me so happy that after so many years of neglect (he has scars and missing teeth), he gets to live out the rest of his days in a warm home with people who love him. What you're doing for Kenny is priceless. And now I'm getting a bit teary, dammit!
@Meghan Nesmith@twitter I briefly worked at a local chain of consignment stores that had people stay in the store as they went through the clothes. At the end, people could either take home rejected clothes or leave them to be donated. I am mostly sure that they didn't sell any of those clothes, at least at accepted-item prices (the chain seemed to have generally ethical, or at least rule-abiding, owners). Clothes that didn't sell could be taken back by sellers before a certain date or left in the store to be sold, often on clearance. However, in my initial tour of the store, there were a lot of bags of these for-donation clothes in the basement. I think they kept not with the intention of selling them, but because didn't have a system or real incentive for driving huge quantities of clothes to a thrift store/shelter. Towards the end of my time there, we got a huge load of mostly ugly, outdated clothes from other locations to sell on clearance. No one told the lower-level employees where they came from, and based on the mystery and quality of the clothes, we speculated that they were for-donation clothes from other locations. If so, it's a little ethically shady, but at least at our location, most of the people left unwanted clothes because they didn't feel like carting them home/to the thrift store, not out of altruism.
@BananaPeel My sister and I still talk dreamily about one day having enough money to buy clothes full-price at places besides H&M. At this point, though, I think only buying things that are at least 60% off has been totally ingrained in us.
@nevertooyoung My aunt married into a very rich family, and whenever she and my mom talk about finances (all the siblings help support my grandmother financially), she tries to act like money is tight. Except the reasons she gives are things like, "We're still finishing the vacation house in Thailand."
@RosemaryF I've had friends go, "Why are you waiting until you're back home in a few months to get a haircut? That's silly--you're so picky!" Even when I explain that there have only been two people who've ever done a good job cutting my hair (and even then it wasn't perfect--my hair plays tricks), they just don't understand. After the first good haircutter I found (through naturallycurly!) moved away without a trace, I spent about a week researching salons online. Until I was 18, I had a center part, no layers, shoulder-length or longer, and was told by ignorant hairstylists that my hair was coarse and thick when it's actually fine, just very curly. How we suffer!
Oh, SEPTA. My friend had his monthly trailpass (so around $125) stolen the morning he bought it, before the conductor had even come by. Not only did he have to later buy a new trailpass, the conductor made him buy a ticket. Protip: keep your pass handy (in the book you're reading or your pocket, for example) but not in the holder! It's way too easy to have it stolen or forget it, and then you are screwed. I only had a pass for one summer, but I never had a conductor get pissed off or saw them yell at anyone else for doing that. (Not that they'd be at all justified in doing so!)