Smart SpendingSmart Spending

Blogger offers tips for minimizing conflict.

By Karen Datko Oct 30, 2009 6:20PM

Many people have had a bad boss in their career -- a supervisor who is manipulative, deceitful, vicious, grossly egotistical or all of the above.


But you can find a way to survive or even remedy this bad situation, thanks to some valuable tips from Patrick at Cash Money Life.

There is a caveat here: These tips will work best if the boss’s bad behavior is directed specifically at you and not the entire workforce. "It's a lot more difficult to avoid conflict if your supervisor treats everyone the same way," Patrick writes.


Any one of these practical measures can help you build wealth.

By Karen Datko Oct 30, 2009 4:42PM

This post comes from partner blog The Dough Roller.


Perhaps the most frequently asked question in all of personal finance is this: How do you become a millionaire? Although we often focus on the idea of becoming a millionaire, there's really a different question lurking just below the surface -- how do you become financially independent? It's financial independence that we are really seeking, although for most of us, achieving millionaire status would get us there or at least be a great start.

While $1 million is a big number, it can be attained. The journey to $1 million may be a long one, but each step along the way is not difficult. In fact, each step is downright easy. With the right planning, commitment and execution, anybody can become a millionaire. While there are certainly more than five ways to build wealth, what follows are five of the most practical concepts and methods that anybody can follow to become a millionaire in the making.


Some are a bit naughty, some are nice.

By Karen Datko Oct 30, 2009 2:14PM

This guest post comes from J. Money at Budgets are Sexy.


For all you slackers out there (myself included): Last year for Halloween I went as a rock star, but I'm thinking of going as a blogger this time around. According to a friend, though, that means I have to put on a pair of nerd glasses and hike up my pants like Urkel! I think my friend is confused. We're more like this guy. I mean, come on.

Actually, I have no idea how to dress as a blogger. I'm just being lazy. More than likely I'll paint the black nail polish back on and sharpen me up some rocker tattoos again. I already wear ripped jeans and T-shirts anyway, so it'll cost me a big fat $0. And I don't have to worry about any props getting stolen by drunkards!


Haven't picked a costume yourself? Check out some of these clever ideas from me and friends around the net (thanks, everyone):


Leftover Halloween treats will go to U.S. troops.

By Teresa Mears Oct 30, 2009 1:42PM

Do your kids usually get way more Halloween candy than you want them to eat? Did you buy more than you needed for trick-or-treaters who didn’t show?


Sell it back to your dentist.


Dentists and orthodontists nationwide are participating in this year’s Halloween Candy Buyback, in which dentists will pay people $1 to $2 per pound for their leftover candy. Some dental offices are throwing parties, giving out prizes (including toothbrushes) and donating additional money to local charities as well.


Common sense is called for, but "best by" is only a suggestion.

By Donna_Freedman Oct 30, 2009 11:55AM

This week I ate canned pumpkin that was three years past its expiration date, and I didn't die. Not even once.


Why risk it? Why not throw it out? Because I was feeling both frugal and contrary.


Last week a Smart Spending message board reader started a thread about an "out of code" food market in her neighborhood. The outlet specializes in food that's super-cheap because it has passed its sell-by date. Some of the items -- canned goods, coffee, cake mixes and the like -- were four or five months beyond their suggested dates.


Some people who responded were grossed out by the very idea. One called such marketing "a step above a Dumpster dive."


That's when I decided to bake some pie.


Even adults can get a sweet treat if they wear a swirl top hat.

By Teresa Mears Oct 30, 2009 11:11AM

It’s time for Friday food freebies and deals. This week, a lot of our deals are for Halloween meals, especially for children in costume. But if you’re willing to wear a swirl top hat, even an adult can get a free frozen yogurt.


We wrote up a bunch of Halloween deals for restaurants and free events earlier this week. Some of last week’s food deals also are still good.


Remember that not all deals are good at all locations of chain restaurants.

Here are our latest food deals, gathered with some help from our friends at Cities on the Cheap:


Believing some of these untruths can waste bunches of money.

By Karen Datko Oct 30, 2009 10:33AM

This guest post comes from Kris at Cheap Healthy Good.


Salt helps water boil faster. An avocado pit will keep guacamole from browning. Soda will eat through basically anything, Alien-style.

We’ll hear hundreds of food myths in our lifetime. Some, thank Snopes, will be inarguably disproved, while others will remain as persistent as head colds, altering both what we eat and how we cook. And still more myths will be made up as we go along, as technology develops and kitchens change with the times.

Today, we're focusing on a few of those newer myths -- modern-day legends spawned by newspapers, TV shows, and those accursed enemies of truth, e-mail forwards. Will açai berries speed up weight loss? Does microwaving plastic cause cancer? Are bananas really going the way of the dodo bird? We'll explore and answer these questions and more, once and for all.


Postal Service wants to offer other new products to stop the bleeding.

By Karen Datko Oct 29, 2009 6:17PM

The U.S. Postal Service is struggling partly because fewer people use snail mail. So how's this for a fix? Post offices have begun selling greeting cards.


They are available at 500 post offices under a one-year contract with Hallmark and will be sold at 1,000 more after Jan. 1 as part of this experiment.


You may not find this service in your neighborhood. The USPS has 37,000 or so locations -- although several hundred will likely be closed as a cost-cutting measure. (Here's the latest list under consideration for the axe (.pdf file).)

And there's more news, The Washington Post reports:



Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.


Smart Spending brings you the best money-saving tips from MSN Money and the rest of the Web. Join the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.