Easy Like Sunday Morning Recap and Roundup – # 11 – December 9th, 2012

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Each time, the purpose of the Easy Like Sunday Morning Recap and Roundup series is the same – for me to be able to connect with you, the readers, on a more personal (non personal finance informational transmission only) level, encourage community, and also to give back to the other bloggers around the blogosphere who have mentioned My Personal Finance Journey throughout the past few weeks or so. It’s been about a month since the last roundup, so we definitely have some catching up to do! 

As far as the theme goes, the title of the roundup gives it away. The roundup theme is named after the Lionel Richie song, Easy Like Sunday Morning (which I play once each time I put this together), to remind us of the importance of slowing down at least every once in a while to take appreciation for that which transpired over the past few days.

So, without further ado, let’s get started with this edition’s roundup!


  • As far as my life in general, the months of November and December have been pretty busy, but also enjoyable! Below are some of the highlights:
    • In my graduate school Alzheimer’s disease research, we were finally able to finish up the follow-up experiments required to respond to the manuscript reviewer’s comments. And, with some luck, it got accepted without further revisions needed! 
      • If you’re interested in reading up on the type of research I do, you can view the article at the following link in the journal, Biomacromolecules
    • Having finished getting this article submitted, we also decided to turn it in to my Master’s Thesis, so I’ll be doing my defense for that before Christmas this year, and the degree will be conferred/finalized in May 2013. Only a couple more years of grad school now! 
    • I’m also now 3 months in serving as a Teaching Assistant for a Transport Processes / Fluid Dynamics 3rd year undergraduate chemical engineering class. I’ve really enjoyed the role so far, as it’s given me a chance to teach problem sets for the homework each week.
      • We just had our last class on Friday, and so now, all we have to do is prepare for the final and that will be over with. Right now, I’m not assigned to be a TA next semester. 
    • Another thing that I’m very proud to report is that my sister will move in to her new condo that she bought this coming week. Due to the severely-depressed real estate market these days, she was able to get a killer deal/value! Congrats to her for making this big leap! 
    • At the beginning of November, our younger greyhound, Charlie passed away after losing his battle with some stomach problems that had been pretty severe since June of this year. Below is the last picture we got of Charlie the night before he died on 11/1/2012. RIP 🙂

    • Today, we’re actually going to a golden retriever kennel to look in to adopting Crystal (see picture below). I’ve wanted a golden retriever for quite some time now, so we’re looking forward to meeting her. She is 8 years old. 

  • As far as my personal finances, the months of November and December so far have been going very well. 
    • First, in October of this year, I maxed out my Roth IRA contributions. 
    • Next, in November, I received a very unexpected lump sum inheritance that had been passed down from my great-grandparents. With the help of this, I was able to max out my Individual 401k contributions for the year along with my normal contributions to my taxable Vanguard mutual fund account this month. 
  • As far as my blog goes, November was the second month for My Personal Finance Journey to feature posts by our staff writing team!
    • As I mentioned in the September roundup, I added several new staff writers to contribute articles for the site on a regular basis to prevent having one to two week breaks between my regular posts while I am busy in graduate school and leaving you all out to dry. Listed below are the awesome staff writers for My Personal Finance Journey! They are all doing a great job so far.
    • While this definitely reduces the net profit of my site (and vis-a-vis the amount that I have available for the 10% income give back – in the month of November, I broke even), I view this as a HIGHLY worthwhile long-term investment for my site building for the future, so am more than happy to have each and every one of the writers above!  


    Since the last roundup, there was one guest post here at My Personal Finance Journey.

    If you would like to guest post on my site, please click here to read more details about how to kick off the guest posting process. I’d love to hear from you!


    For the first 6 months after I started this blog, I pretty much “blogged in a cave.” What I mean by this is that I cranked out over 200 very good blog articles in this time period, but since I didn’t know any better, I didn’t reach out to other bloggers, get involved with the online community through commenting on other sites, or do any kind of site promotion at all. As you can imagine, some of the articles written during this time period didn’t get the attention that I think they deserved corresponding to the content contained.
    The Blast from the Past section will feature one old My Personal Finance Journey article each roundup that I feel is high quality, but was published prior to my blog having any sort of real readership. This week’s article is listed below:
    Why I Sold Out of My Actively Managed Mutual Fund – This post explains my reasoning for selling my last remaining shares/holdings of the only actively managed mutual fund I owned back. I had purchased the mutual fund because I was essentially “chasing returns” after hearing a recommendation from Jim Cramer back in 2007 for the CGM Focus Fund. Enjoy! 


    Every once in a while, when I’m reading an article or site in the personal finance blogosphere, I’ll be so impressed in hearing about what a person did or wrote about, that all I can say to myself is WOW! This section of the roundup will serve as a running “home” for recognizing outstanding achievement.

    If you know of someone in the PF blogging world that is really doing amazing things, feel free to send me an email for consideration in future roundups.


    Listed below are the giveaways I’ve come across in my journey through the personal finance blogosphere this week (along with the links so that you can head over and enter!). It’s great to see everyone giving back to their readers through these promotions.

    If you’re hosting a giveaway and it’s not listed above, please send me an email to let me know, and I’ll get it included in next week’s roundup!


    ·          Investeem hosted the Carnival of Investing and included Are Men or Women Better Investors?
    ·         Frugal Rules hosted the Festival of Frugality and included How Frugal is TOO Frugal?
    ·         Term Life Insurance by Jeff hosted the Carnival of Personal Finance and included Are Men or Women Better Investors?
    ·        Prairie Eco-Thrifter hosted the Carnival of Personal Finance and included Doggy Vet Bills – A Real Life Example of Emergency Fund Financial Planning in Action.
    ·        Reach Financial Independence hosted the Festival of Frugality and included Are You Guilty of Making Irrational Money Decisions?
    If you are hosting a carnival that includes (or included) My Personal Finance Journey and I missed listing it here (I don’t get trackbacks since I’m not on WordPress, so I have to rely on direct email and Google Alert notifications), please email me so I can include it in my roundup. Thanks!


    1. Credit Card Negotiator posted at Enemy of Debt.
    2. Do You Know When to Accept Help posted at Sustainable Personal Finance. 
    3. Len Penzo posted about Saving Lame Excuses for Someone Who Cares.
    4. Time is More Valuable than Money posted at Squirrelers. 
    5. What are REIT’s? posted at Free from Broke.  



    This section will serve as a running location for any very insightful, high quality questions submitted by readers throughout the week.

    If you are wondering something about personal finance, please feel free to email me and ask!


    Currently, my only other site besides this one is The Carnival of Passive Investing, which runs monthly editions. For the upcoming December edition, we have John Marotta from Marotta on Money as our host. If you have any passive investing posts you’ve written recently, you can submit them to be included in the carnival.
    However, I have several other domain names purchased, and I am currently learning WordPress Self-Hosted to get these sites live as soon as time allows! I’ll be sure to keep you all updated on progress.
    Well, that wraps up this edition of the round-up. If you have any suggestions or recommendations for things you’d like to see in this roundup, just let me know by sending me an email!
    As always, thanks to all the readers for creating such a great community here at My Personal Finance Journey. Your interaction, questions, and knowledge are what keeps me going on this blog!
    Until next time – Jacob
    How about you all? 

    How is the December going for you so far? Are you ready for the Holiday Break?!

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