Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Coming Attractions

Shavuot is over and I'm exhausted. It was really nice, barring the long walk with both the double and single stroller in the pouring rain on Monday. I can't remember the last time when I was literally soaked to the skin (my coat was still wet this afternoon).

So, this evening I thought I'd just provide a taste of things to come over the next week or two.

One of my goals for the month is to write at least one book review. I've been looking over my books, trying to decide which one to review. I think it's important to talk about books that have a specifically Canadian outlook, ones that talk about RRSPs and RESPs and similar things that are unique to those of us who live north of the 49th parallel. I can read countless books and blogs that talk about the difference between a 401(k) and a Roth IRA, but that doesn't help me with my financial decisions.

I think I've decided to begin with a one-two punch. First I'll review Derek Foster's "Stop Working, Here's How You Can!" followed by his other book, "The Lazy Investor". I actually won my copy of Lazy Investor (thanks Mike from Four Pillars!) and Mike and I have had a bit of a discussion via email about the book and the author's M.O. in general.

In case you haven't heard of Derek before, he's 38 this year and retired four years ago. Most of his retirement strategy is built around dividend income and income trusts. He says he began investing in 1992 with the intention of investing $200/month and retired 12 years later with his wife, kids and (I believe) a fully paid for home about an hour out of Toronto.

Is this a good strategy for the average person? I'll weigh in on this and several other things that came to mind when reading his books.

I also want to post about the rebate cheque we British Columbians are expecting at the end of June. While $100 per person is not quite in the same category as the economic stimulus cheques our American neighbours just received, it is an opportunity to devote some windfall money towards achieving our financial goals.

Gas prices are horrible and they just keep getting worse! I want to talk about that a bit. I could vent about how dreadful it is to have the increases happen so shortly after we started traveling hundreds of kilometres to our second home on a regular basis but there is actually a lot to talk about that is a little deeper than saying Poor Me.

And I hope to have some news on the debt reduction front, but I will keep that under my sheitl (wig) for now.

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