Writing about Time Management, Life, Careers & Family

The Merit Badge Mindset

One of the true joys I remember from 4th and 5th grade was earning my junior Girl Scout badges. My troop earned plenty through projects we did at meetings, but that was not sufficient for me. Oh no. I needed to freelance on the side. And so, I used to page through the handbook on a daily basis, setting my sights on a new badge. I’d look through the requirements and s… read more »

The Joy Budget

In the first chapter of All the Money in the World, I note that most personal finance books tell readers to keep track of all the money going in and out. The usual point of this is to make sure that the “money coming in” category is bigger than the “money going out” category. Which is, of course, a good thing to know. But let’s say it… read more »

The Money Saving Mom’s Budget

In late 2010, shortly after I got a contract to write the book that would become All the Money in the World, I started asking everyone I knew for people with interesting money stories. One friend, who at the time was quite into couponing, mentioned a coupon blogger who’d paid cash for a house. I thought this sounded intriguing, though I believe my line at the ti… read more »

Welcome to LauraVanderkam.com

Welcome to my new website! When I started My168hours.com three years ago, I was writing mostly about time and productivity. As my interests (and book topics) have expanded, I’ve decided to repurpose LauraVanderkam.com to cover all the subjects I write about. The centerpiece of this website will continue to be my blog, but there is also information a… read more »

Hey parents, the third kid’s a bargain (USA TODAY)

(Note: This column ran in today’s USA Today) By Laura Vanderkam In a tepid economy, people look to save money however they can. One strategy? Not having kids. After hitting a high of 4.3 million in 2007, U.S. births tumbled, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to about 4 million in 2010. It makes sense. Each year, the U.S. Depart… read more »