A couple things from The Simple Dollar:
- 529 Savings Plans. Now, I am nowhere near ready to have a child or start saving for a child's college expenses, but I think it's a good thing to know about anyway. It's basically a savings account specifically designed for expenses relating to higher education. I suppose I could use it to save for grad school, but I'll have to read more into it before I think about that. The writer of The Simple Dollar believes that Iowa has the best 529 Plan out there--and you don't have to live in Iowa to open one (though he does. coincidence?). Many states have this option; you can open an account even if you're not a resident of the state, and many states don't tax you on withdrawls you make outside of the state in which the account was opened. Here's a handy dandy comparison chart of all the states and the plans they offer, if you're interested in that. And, just for the sake of it, here's info on the Iowa Plan. So, if you're about to be a parent, or are currently a parent, there you go. Maybe you already knew about it. I sure didn't--but maybe it's one of those things you magically learn when you become a grown-up and have kids...like "mortgages" and "taxes" and "re-financing." Sometimes the thought of all that is overwhelming.
- Here's another list of things to do on what The Simple Dollar calls a "money-free weekend," which is basically how I'm trying to live my life at this point. It's quite fun to think of things you can do without spending money--and it makes you (or me at least) feel more active, and more aware of my community and all the great things my city has to offer!
That's all the ranting for now. I just found this interesting-looking book about the "hooking up" generation. I'm going to check it out from the library...I read this Q&A with the author, and it seems like a really interesting (for lack of a better word) read. I'm not sure about her perspectives on the necessity of relationships, her bit about it in the Q&A might be misleading, but I am interested (how many times can I use this word?) to see what she found about this new trend in women, how it's "empowering" (or not), its relation to some sort of skewed feminist movement among today's young women, etc. It's definitely something I've thought about; I had always thought of it more as a phase you go through in high school/college, but in my post-college days I'm finding girls (women) my age who are also looking for "hookups." I'll read the book and write an elaboration on this I'm sure...