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The Simple Dollar

By Trent Hamm

“I have always sought to have autonomy”: On the Road with Evan Dufour

This is a traveler case study. (Read others or nominate yourself.) When I learned of Evan’s tale of medical woes in India, I wanted to hear more about his decision to travel the world before age 30. Here’s Evan: Tell us about yourself.   I grew up in the boondocks of Connecticut where my love for the wild began at an early age.

Student Loans 101: Vocabulary

Money and college can be confusing. Whether you’re just starting out on your college journey or dealing with student loans from years ago, here is a glossary of helpful terms you may need to know: Accredited: If your college and program is accredited, it means that it has met specific requirements by the U.S. Department of Education.

IKEA MALM Stikwood headboard

Materials: Ikea Malm Queen Bed We really wanted a reclaimed wood look in our all white bedroom, and fell in love with a headboard we saw online but was entirely too expensive for our budget. So instead, we used the Ikea Malm platform bedframe in white and use adhesive, reclaimed Stikwood pieces to give the appearance of a reclaimed headboard without the added cost.

From bunk bed to playhouse

Materials: Mydal bunk bed, Trofast storage as stairs While I was browsing through all the amazing Ikea hackers’ projects, I got inspired and decided to make my own! My project was to transform the Mydal bunk bed into an indoor cabin. Who doesn’t need an indoor cabin nowadays? This project was designed for my 8 year old daughter. Therefore it has very specific requirements.

9 Reasons You May Never Retire

This article is by staff writer William Cowie. My mom passed away a little less than a year ago. All her life she was the picture of health: She walked every day and ate super-healthy. The extended family dreaded going there, because they knew there would be no sugary goodies, only healthy (boring) eats.

7 Ways Quitting Social Media Can Transform Your Life

A couple of months ago, I made the decision to quit Facebook. Effectively right after, I stopped logging in completely. This actually surprised some of my friends. To sum up why I did it, I felt that Facebook was turning me into a depressed robot. Robot because I felt trapped in a cycle. A system if you will.

22 Ways to Get a Better Night’s Sleep

This post is brought to you by Tuft & Needle. Tuft & Needle makes quality mattresses and offers them for an honest price. Exclusively available online and made in the USA, the mattress ships right to your door.

I implore you: Do not dumb down.

Two weeks ago on our Beautiful Writers Group call, Linda Sivertsen and I got a really great question: “I’m caught in this trap between people saying, ‘You’ve gotta meet people where they’re at’ versus, ‘You have to show people what you know and then drop the bread crumbs and let the ants find you.’ What do you think?” Linda jumped in: “I

Pushing Past the Terrifying Dip in Motivation

By Leo Babauta My son, who is officially an adult in a matter of days, is facing a small crisis: the project he’s working on is not going well, and he’s ready to give up not only on the project but the career he was excited about not too long ago. I can feel the horrible mixture of discouragement, disappointment, difficulty, despair he must be feeling, because I’ve felt it too. I

Memory box for ticket stubs

Materials: RIBBA frame I made this Memory box for ticket stubs for my favorite teen in the world. As a passionate hunter and gatherer, I first tried for months to get hold of a second-hand shadowbox but no chance! So I gave up and bought a RIBBA picture frame at IKEA, which is actually a shadow box and just acts as if it were a picture frame.

The $5,000 Secret Santa and Other Goodies

This is a housekeeping post with one time-sensitive update and smaller recommendations. It’s split into two parts: The $5,000 Secret Santa Bite-sized Recommendations: 2 Books, 2 Movies, 2 Tweets, and 2 Songs. The $5,000 Secret Santa The short version: I’ve decided to go crazy and do a one-time-only $5,000 Quarterly box.

Expedit into Card Catalog

This is an was Expedit Shelf that was transformed into an apothecary cabinet! Basically, by applying wood strips over the laminate you can transform a basic  Ikea shelf into  rustic and vintage console.  Enjoy! See my step by step tutorial here.

Top kitchen cabinets made into a kitchen island

  This is my IKEA hack. 6 top cabinets to make 1 kitchen island. I used 6 standard top cabinets and screwed them together on the inside back to back. For some extra support we also screwed some 4 by 4′s across the bottom.

See for Yourself! The Jacket for “Better Than Before” Is Revealed.

In the life of a book, there are many milestones. Finishing the first draft, choosing the title, making the final edit — and figuring out the jacket art. We’ve all heard “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” but covers matter so much.

Increase Your Productivity In 4 Steps With The Prison Workout

‘Hey Bro, how do I get that prison body?’ One of the most common questions I’d be asked by guys when I worked as a Personal Trainer. The body they’re talking about of course is that larger than life look some prisoners have when they go away for a long time. How they can be put away for a couple of years – and suddenly come out looking superhuman at the other end of the stretch.