Whether it's a care package for a college student, a goody box for someone in the military or a way to say happy birthday to a friend or relative, there's nothing like opening a box of fresh, homemade cookies. And if those cookies just happen to be that recipient's favorite cookies of all time, even better!
Here are tips to make sure your ...Read more
As the stories continue to unfold about how people survived Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, and as people continue to deal with the ravages of hurricane season, I can't be the only one questioning my own disaster preparedness.
One thing is certain: Here at the Hunt house, we'd have bread.
For years, I'd had somewhat of a love-hate ...Read more
A habit is defined as a behavior repeated so often it becomes almost automatic. I am in awe of the power of a habit. It's a force to change your life, and it is available to anyone, no matter their situation or circumstances.
For five years, author Tom Corley observed the daily habits of the rich and the poor, and documented his findings in his...Read more
Until a couple of years ago, I didn't know heated mattress pads even existed. Makes sense, I suppose, considering I'd lived in Southern California for most of my life, where it is mostly warm all year round. Once I relocated to Colorado a couple of years ago, where the seasons are more pronounced, I had a lot to learn about winter, including how...Read more
Our kids are fortunate to be growing up in the most progressive and exciting time in history. Sadly, the very culture that offers them the world is also perpetrating this lie: You are entitled to have everything you want, even if you don't have the money to pay for it. It's not a problem. You deserve it. Buy it now, and you can pay for it later!...Read more
The wedding was complicated and expensive. But it's over, and now it's time to settle in and enjoy your new life together.
Lucky for you, I'm here to warn you about some common money myths that newlyweds have been known to bring with them into their marriage.
Myth: Double the income, half the expenses.
This is what I call newlywed fuzzy math:...Read more
Dear Mary: We are remodeling our kitchen, which means all new appliances. Do you have a suggestion for the brand we should consider? And should we get matching appliances or do more of a mix-and-match to get the best prices available? Also, which type of countertop do you feel is better? We have nine grandkids, so we want everything to be very ...Read more
Recently, it has been reported that hackers have stolen personal identifying and sensitive information from 143 million American consumers, including Social Security numbers and driver's license numbers, from Equifax, one of the three big consumer credit reporting agencies.
How this could happen is beyond my comprehension. Still, we must assume...Read more
I, WalterMike Hartner
Born of the working class in England, young Walter Crofter runs away from his dysfunctional family to seek fun and adventure. Becoming first mate on a trade ship, not only does Walter save the captain's life more than once, he excels at his position to find wealth, love...
It makes me laugh now, but years ago, when I watched a particular episode of the television show "Little House on the Prairie," I was so judgmental. Whaaaat?! Are you kidding me? Pleeeeease, not Pa!
Seems the owners of Oleson's Mercantile had some newfangled system where they would trust Pa to take stuff without paying, put it on his bill and ...Read more
I know it's hard. I know you're desperate. You're stressed and losing sleep. Things are tough. You have to do something, and soon. But whatever you do, don't touch your retirement account. Don't borrow against it. Don't withdraw from it. Leave it alone.
What's so bad about liquidating a retirement account?
Momentum. Even if your retirement ...Read more
It was a total self-inflicted injury. I did a really stupid thing.
Early one Saturday morning, I heard the doorbell chime, which reminded me I'd set up an appointment with a landscape guy. Not wanting a second ring to wake my husband, I flew like a flash from one end of the house to the other in socks ... and down the wooden stairs.
When I hit...Read more
"I don't do math. Numbers give me a rash." That's a line I've used a lot, mostly because it's true but also because it gets me a laugh.
Truth be told, most of us stink when it comes to doing math on the fly. That's a problem because being hopeless with math makes us putty in the hands of retailers.
Why is it socially acceptable to say that we'...Read more
One of the best things I've done in a long time is to invite my readers to send in their requests for my Best Inexpensive picks. I'm not sure why I love it so much, but it may have something to do with satisfying my inner shopper without actually shopping.
At any rate, today I'm excited to reveal my Best Inexpensive pick for four completely ...Read more
Dear Mary: Reading a recent column of yours about cleaning a garbage disposer prompted me to want to tell you about a brush that is made just for this purpose. It's just like the Mr. Scrappy disposer brush, and I've had it for at least 10 years. This brush is designed to clean all the way into the disposer and also under the splash guard. I put ...Read more
Regardless of what the calendar reads, I know without a doubt when fall has arrived where I live in northern Colorado. It's not evident necessarily by a change of temperature or even trees beginning to turn color, because both are still very summerlike. Around here, it's tiny, annoying, persistent fruit flies that signal that autumn cannot be ...Read more
I gave my son and daughter-in-law lots of gifts when their son, Elijah, was born. But none has come back to bless me more than the gift of Friday. Since he was 6 weeks old, I've closed the door to work on Fridays to care for and learn from my grandson, Eli.
In these two years, Eli and I have explored our neighborhood looking for cats, dogs, ...Read more
Over the years, I have spent way too much in an attempt to furnish bedrooms and bathrooms with high-quality towels and bedding. What I have discovered through a lot of trial and error is that a high price does not always guarantee great results.
Today I want to tell you about my picks for the best inexpensive bath towels, mattress pad and down ...Read more
A reader question I answered recently brought a small avalanche of mail, mostly from readers who were aghast that I would suggest they save such significant portions of their paychecks for retirement. It was money they just didn't think they could afford to save. I can imagine that for people who save nothing, my suggesting they should be saving...Read more
I have a long list of reader questions that I'd intended to answer today. But I got so taken away with Sandy's question, I used up all the space! I promise to get to the rest of the list really soon.
Dear Mary: Can I use my Polident denture cleanser to soak/clean my mouth guard for several days in a row, or is it really necessary to start with ...Read more
I have to admit that my readers' comments -- the good, the grateful, the bad, ugly, glowing, hilarious and even puzzling -- are some of the best entertainment I get every day. You make me think and keep me on my toes. But mostly, you make me smile, and that's why I love to hear from you.
Though I am unable to personally acknowledge every ...Read more