Take 5: A Roundup of Reads From Around the Web


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This week: toys that will keep your kids outside, living on Social Security, starting a summer side gig, male vs. female investors and eight things that will cost less this summer.

1. 14 Toys That Will Keep Your Kids Entertained and Out of the House

[Credit.com] “School’s out and the kids are bouncing off the walls. You want them to go outside and play, but to be fair, the toys out there are sun-bleached and well-worn due to years of hard play. Here are 14 summer fun toys that are sure to be a hit — and won’t break the bank.”

I don’t have any kids, but I clicked on this one because I still like to play outside every now and then. There are some pretty cool toys on the list, from a sidewalk glitter roller to the Gazillion Bubbles Hurricane Blaster. Check it out, then see our post, “50 Fun Free or Cheap Things to Do With Your Kids This Summer.”

2. Retiring on Social Security Alone

[The Dollar Stretcher] “In my mid-60s, I faced the fact that after spending most of my adult life as a manufacturer’s representative, putting three children through college, recently divorced, and without much “put away,” I needed to figure out how was I going to sustain myself. Living in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, I knew it was impossible to live there without working to supplement my Social Security.”

He’s right about not being able to afford Fort Lauderdale on Social Security alone. I also live in Fort Lauderdale, came to the same conclusion several years ago, then did a TV news story about it. See “Ask Stacy: How Am I Supposed to Live on Social Security?

What this author opted to do was leave Fort Lauderdale and find someplace less expensive to retire. This article explains the criteria he used to find his new home and how it all worked out. Retiring anytime soon? Check it out.

3. Starting a Summer Side Business — What You Should Know

[Nav.com] “America’s free market allows an individual to free up raw gifts provided to them by their Creator, transform those raw gifts into marketplace skills, and supply to the free market the human resources to resolve present-day unmet needs, issues, challenges, and so on, for particular market segments.”

This primer urges you to start a summer side gig and offers some tools to help you do it successfully. Check it out, then read “7 Ways to Make Extra Money This Summer.”

4. Male Millennials Are More Confident Investing Than Their Female Counterparts

[Debt.com] “A new survey by invstr, a social finance app, has revealed differences between the men and women of Gen Y. For the most part, male millennials are outperforming their female equivalents. What exactly did this study show? Well …”

This article included such gems as “guys trust themselves more,” “men are able to save more” and “men are more confident.”

I hate to break it to this writer, who I assume is young, but these results don’t just apply to millennials. In the 30 years I’ve been doing financial news, men have always been able to save more, perhaps because they make more. They’ve also always been more confident about investing. What this article didn’t say is that women are often more successful when it comes to investing.

5. These 8 Everyday Buys Will Be Cheaper This Summer

[Wise Bread] “Once summer is in full swing, it can feel like you’re paying a lot of money for air conditioning and other necessities. However, there are several things that are actually cheaper during the summer months.”

Can you guess the things whose prices drop in the summer months? I couldn’t. Items on this list include beef, eggs, gas, air travel and more. Stop complaining about your air conditioning bill, check out this article, and feel a little better about your summer expenses.

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

Stacy Johnson

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Read Next: Ask Stacy: 7 Things You Need to Know About Social Security

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