Take 5: A Roundup of Reads From Around the Web

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This week: How to live on $3/day, homemade deodorant, why interest rates will stay low, how the government helps entrepreneurs and 21st century money management.

1. I Tried to Live on $3 of Food a Day — While Still Shopping at Whole Foods

[Credit.com] “When I first decided to do this little experiment, I’d agreed to try to feed my family for $5 per person per day, so I sat down and took a look at my grocery spending over the last few months, crunched some numbers, and … uh-oh …”

The “uh-oh” above refers to the fact that this author was already spending only $5 per day per person on groceries. That’s why she modified her experiment to see if she could do it for $3, while shopping at Whole Foods. One thing that made it easier? She’s a vegan, so she didn’t have to spend on meat, dairy or eggs. Still, the challenge was a worthwhile one, as you’ll see: She includes her exact shopping list, prices paid and meal menus. Food for thought.

2. Homemade Natural Deodorant

[The Dollar Stretcher] “Are you looking for a more natural deodorant? Taking a trip down the toiletries aisle in your local supermarket can feel like walking into a horror movie. Besides the jaw-dropping high prices for items like Botox-based facial creams and aluminum-infused clinical-strength antiperspirant, scientists are starting to question the chemicals that we slather on our bodies on a daily basis. Homemade products are always better for you, and deodorant is no exception.”

We’ve published plenty of DIY stories, with instructions on making everything from dog food to detergent, but I don’t think we’ve covered this topic before. Check it out; the recipe doesn’t look that difficult.

3. Why Interest Rates Won’t Get Back to Normal Until at Least 2025

[Money] “After the central bank’s September meeting, [Federal Reserve Chair Janet] Yellen noted at a press conference that ‘the median projection for the federal funds rate rises only gradually to 1.1% at the end of next year, 1.9% at the end of 2018, and 2.6% by the end of 2019.’ That’s still about 1 percentage point below the historic average.”

This author mounts a convincing argument that it’s going to be nine more years before the federal funds rate regains its average rate of 5 percent. Maybe, but I’d be hard pressed to bet on anything that far in the future.

4. Is the Government Good or Bad for Entrepreneurs?

[Debt.com] “The government can be good and bad for entrepreneurs for a number of reasons. While there is much governmental regulation for everything, there is also considerable support provided by the government for entrepreneurs.”

It’s about time someone acknowledged that the government does more than just create regulations and red tape. I’ve written before about how some government agencies, like the Small Business Administration, can really help budding entrepreneurs. This author doesn’t say much about the SBA, but he does mention other government-sponsored help for small businesses. Check it out.

5. It’s the 21st Century — Why Is Your Money Stuck in the 20th?

[Wise Bread] “What was good advice for the 20th century? Go to the best college you can, get a good job, live frugally, save and invest, buy a house, and max out your retirement savings.”

This article takes an interesting look at what worked last century and why it may not be as smart in this one. Frankly, I still see nothing wrong with the “20th century” advice offered above. Check out this post with its more modern tips and see if you agree.

Don’t forget to share your thoughts and reactions in comments below or on our Facebook page!

Stacy Johnson

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