Mary's Perspective

Honey, Let’s Talk

Emotional intimacy is the key to a healthy marriage and a precondition for developing financial harmony. The secret to creating

Food & Recipes

Be Ready for Breakfast

I am often asked to review books about frugality and thrift. Once in a while, one hits the mark. From

Dear Mary, Laundry

Brighten Up Dingy Linens

Dear Mary, While my sister was on staff at a summer camp last year, she did not launder her bedding

Laundry, Tips

Laundry Detergent’s Cleaning Power

I know I go on and on about my laundry detergent recipe, but I get so excited when a product

Home & Family, Travel and Entertainment

Feel Good About Vacationing

So, how are those summer vacation plans coming? If things aren’t looking so good for you to get away from

Mary's Perspective, Money and Finances

Life’s Money Rules – Rule 5: Tell Your Money Where to Go

If the word budget is like nails on a chalkboard, you’ve got a friend in me. I know the feeling.

Dear Mary

Settling Can Be Really Bad for You

Dear Mary, What do you think about settling a debt with a creditor? I recently agreed to one for a


Freezer Tricks, Not Freezer Burn

With food prices going up faster than I can get through one grocery shopping trip, it’s more important to our

Home & Family

Debit Cards and Motorcycles Just Aren’t Safe

For decades I’ve pleaded with you to not use debit cards because they are not safe. And for years I

Mary's Perspective

Overspent and Overloaded? You Need Margin

Bill Smith sits down to his most dreaded chore—paying bills. Every month it’s the same story: pay the most urgent

Food & Recipes

You Don’t Have to Be a Kid to Love Pudding

When I say “pudding,” what comes to mind? Perhaps comfort or childhood memories of mom stirring it on the stove.

Dear Mary

Bounce Back from Bankruptcy

Dear Mary, Please give me some pointers on bouncing back from bankruptcy. Will this have any effect on future employment


With Knowledge Comes Savings

There are many things that aren’t negotiable. The salesperson at Macy’s won’t negotiate with you over the price of that

Home & Family

Secret Insider Savings Info

I enjoy discovering secret information—stuff most people don’t know about. And I love spreading the word. Here’s an example: My

Mary's Perspective

Crash Through—Don’t Quit

All of us have quitting points in our lives—those times or situations that become so overwhelming or challenging that we

Food & Recipes

Nothing Says Welcome Home Like a Slow Cooked Meal

What comes to mind when you think slow cooker? If you answered hearty winter meals like stews, soups or pot

Dear Mary

Get Back On That Wagon, Now!

Dear Mary, I’ve read your books and am a member of My husband and I were excited to start


EC Readers Are So Clever

Regularly on my blog, EC readers share their favorite tips. Some weeks there’s a theme—like kitchen tips or winter tips—and every

Home & Family, Laundry

Cheaper Alternative to Super Washing Soda

I’m sure you’ve noticed by now that last minute congressional decisions in 2012 resulted in a 2 percent cut in

Broken Car
Mary's Perspective, Money and Finances

Life’s Money Rules – Rule 4: Anticipate Your Irregular Expenses

If I asked you to stop what you’re doing, add up your monthly expenses, and deduct the total from your