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It's hard to believe I've been doing this for nearly five years now.  I wonder how many of my readers from the beginning are still with me.  Besides my parents, of course, who I know have read every word!

I decided to take a quick look at what were the most popular articles, as noted by page views, that I wrote in 2013.  I was surprised to see that they all were written in the April and May time frame, so I guess I was in a period of good writing.  Though, in fairness, the posts later in the year didn't have as much time to show up in search engines and such, so maybe they're skewed.

Nonetheless, here are the most read posts from 2013.  When I pulled the numbers, I was surprised to see that four of the top six were directly tied to stores or brands.  I'm thinking that maybe I'll put more focus on reviews and observations about products, retailers, and services.  I enjoy writing about them, anyways, so it's good that people are reading!

Most Read

  1. Pay Debt Away But Keep New Debt At Bay – I was proud of this title when I wrote it, but more than all, the message is the most fundamental thing that I think should be part of any debt payoff: Don't take on new debt.  Any time you take on new debt while paying off debt, or even after you're done, you've undone that much hard work that you'll now have to do again.
  2. There Are Always Savings Opportunities – Regardless if you've cut money from your budget, it's always worth taking another look every now and then.  Circumstances change.  Deals change.  Needs change.  Don't think that just because you knocked off $50 from your cable bill that you are done.  You don't have to be.
  3. The Simple Reason JC Penney’s Pricing Gimmick Failed – Much was made of the collapse of one proud retailer JC Penney, and it remains to see if they can truly recover.  I think the failure boiled down to one thing, not checking to see if a ‘great idea' was what customers wanted.
  4. Entertainment Book Filed For Bankruptcy – It was pretty shocking news here in the Detroit area when Entertainment filed for bankruptcy protection.  They've since reorganized and have resumed operations, but at the time, it was unclear if this once popular ‘book' would continue on.  I'm glad to see it has (though we didn't buy one this year).
  5. Does Aldi Stack Up In Terms of Quality and Taste – We have shifted a portion of our grocery budget to Aldi, and I thought I'd take the time to list some of the things we buy, and some that we don't, from the bare bones discount retailer.
  6. The Costco Rule of $10 and Other Bulk Buying Tips – I love Costco and it saves us a lot of money, but the one complaint I hear is that people overspend, which probably wipes out a lot of savings.  Here's a few tips that might help things in check, and some strategies that work for us.

A Few Favorites

  1. Why Apple Needs A Next Big Thing Soon – I think that Apple is a great company and they're definitely one of the biggest and most highly thought of companies in the world, but they need to continue their streak of providing new and innovative products, not just improving their current products, or they'll lose their edge.
  2. Two Seconds and Why High Frequency Trading Always Wins – For those looking to gain an edge in the stock market, it's good to keep in mind that there are companies out there paying millions of dollars to make sure they keep the edge.
  3. A Tribute To Grandparents – This one needs no explanation!
  4. As If I Needed Another Reason to Love Honey Maid Graham Crackers – I spend a lot of time pointing companies and products trying to sneak in a price increase or cut in what they give you, so it was refreshing to see one product that avoided this, and it happens to be one of my favorite snacks!
  5. Easy and Amazing Biscuits – My wife could make these every day and I wouldn't get sick of them.  Of course, I'd probably gain 25 pounds in short order, so it's a good thing she doesn't!  But as an occasional side, these will bring happiness with every bite.
  6. 7 Things I Learned During Our New Roof Project – We found a great roofer and I'm more than happy with our roof, one reason being that he took the time to teach us some of the important things that I think every homeowner should know.

Let me know if there are any topics you'd like to see me cover in 2014.  Above everything else when writing this blog, my favorite thing is when I get comments or social media interactions to show that my posts are hitting home in some way.

I enjoyed Money Beagle in 2013, and I hope you did too!  Here's to a great 2014 ahead.