Giveaway: “Smart Mom, Rich Mom.”

th-1Take a look at personal finance articles aimed at women. How many of them focus on topics like using coupons, getting the best prices for school clothes and cutting back on our purse collections?

Those are all good things to do. But why aren’t women getting information about building real wealth?

Women make 85 percent of consumer purchases. (Hint: Not all of them are of Jimmy Choo footwear.) Yet they are too often ignored, patronized or marginalized by the financial planning industry.

Kimberly Palmer, author of “Smart Mom, Rich Mom: How To Build Wealth While Raising A Family,” has a friend in that line of work. He told her about a colleague who talked to the husband and referred to the wife in the third person. The wife was sitting right next to her spouse.

That’s why we need books like this one. We do need to worry our pretty li’l heads about money.


Palmer’s book is both a wake-up call and an empowerment treatise. It’s based on her own research (she was senior money editor at US News & World Report for nine years) and interviews with moms around the country.

Again, though, this isn’t “save money by clipping coupons” advice. In fact, Palmer suggests a smarter strategy: “Think about how to be a skilled shopper every day and not just a discount chaser on the weekends.”

Full disclosure: I use coupons. But I don’t for a moment think that I can retire on the proceeds.


Taking charge of your finances

Smart moms are proactive, not reactive. Some of the tactics the author suggests:

Think like a boss, whether you work full-time, part-time or not outside the home at all.

Spend and save smarter with an attitude of “frugal luxury” and smart negotiation skills.

Plan ahead for crises, including the fact that women will likely end up managing their own money eventually due to divorce or widowhood.

Invest! And do it with an eye toward minimal fees, maximum tax breaks and prioritizing her own retirement over a kid’s college plan. (Hint: You can’t finance retirement.)

Model smart financial behavior to the kids, and start it early.

This is a book I wish I’d had as a young woman. It would have given me permission to think about my own current and future needs vs. always focusing on the desires of everyone else in the room.


I’m happy to be able to give away a copy because I believe it will help another woman from needing to play catch-up later on.

To enter, do one or more of the following:

Be sure to leave a separate comment for each entry (e.g., “Subscribed to your writing newsletter” or “Follow you on Twitter”).

The deadline to enter is 7 p.m. PDT Tuesday, July 19. If I don’t hear back from the winner by 7 p.m. PDT Wednesday, July 20, I’ll have the random number generator pull a new name.

Note: Due to the high cost of international shipping, a winner from outside the United States will receive an Amazon gift card.

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  1. Sounds like a great book! I heard a lot of the same messages when I was younger, that a woman can work, but we’re meant to be the caretakers, etc. I wish I would’ve focused earlier on my own financial future, but it’s not too late for me. And, this would be excellent for my daughter to read NOW.

  2. Romana

    This sounds like it would be a very useful book to help better manage finances now and moving forward. Even if I don’t win I plan on buying it! Thanks for bringing it to our attention!

  3. My mom missed the boat on this and is living out her last year in poverty. Taking charge of my finances is a need, not a want.

  4. This sounds like an excellent book. I would love to read it.

  5. Love the part about modeling smart finances to your kids! My son surprised me yesterday at a college visit we were doing when he told the tour guide he wanted economics and finance. He was “not sure” when we talked last 🙂 Hoping all this is rubbing off…

  6. Lynn Schellhase

    This sounds like a very informative book that would really help my daughter who struggles on a daily basis!

  7. Suzanne In VA

    New Granddaughter to be born next month, ordered a copy for her Mom thanks!

  8. If I don’t win, I will try and find a copy at our library. Reminds me of buying a car, and the salesmen all speaking with my husband and acting like I was invisible. When he had enough, he told them “you better talk to her; she is the one making the purchase and the payments”. I love the examples cited in the article and the comments; what I call female finance. Who else knows what “chick steaks” are? My daughter and I demonstrated them to spouse and son-inlaw one night.

    • Tracy Stone

      What IS a chick steak?

      • Chick Steal = when you go out for dinner and order steak, the size of the one received by women is substantially smaller than the one received by the men in the group, even though you have ordered the same thing. Or it is a substandard piece of steak because they think you won’t complain.

  9. The prince is not your retirement plan. Neither is waiting for an inheritance. Sounds like something they should assign in high school.

  10. Cathy in NJ

    Sounds like a great book.

    Many times I’ve been ignored when I am the one paying the bill. One Chimney repair guy ignored me, talking only to my boyfriend, then found out I was the home owner. Guess what…no sale.

  11. Sherry

    I’m pretty frugal as it is, but I’m always looking for new frugal ideas. Sounds like this book might have some!

  12. Jane Crouse

    Sounds like a book I needed many years ago. Now I’m playing catch-up in my 50s!

    • Lisa O

      Same here…after a divorce and a raising 2 kids mostly on my own….but happy that I can do a catch-up!

  13. Mirabella

    As a longtime fan of Suze Orman, I have always appreciated the idea that women as well as men have to mind the financial store so to speak, especially because women tend to earn less and live longer than men. I would love to have this book in my personal library.

  14. Deb coy

    Follow you on Facebook.

  15. Deb coy

    I receive your column in my email. Looks like a great read!

  16. Deb coy

    Just signed up for the writers blog. Love your articles.

  17. Sounds awesome! As a divorced mom I’m still trying to figure out the best overall financial plan for myself.

  18. I follow you in Facebook

  19. Ginger

    I love your column and I would love to win this book!

  20. This book sounds really good. It would be a perfect resource for a mom I know. Thank you for the giveaway.

  21. I subscribe via email.

  22. I subscribe to your blog writing newsletter.

  23. Sylvia

    I’d love to win this book for my daughter. She has done a great job of actually employing all the frugal hacks I’ve taught her, but I’d still like to see her be able to build actual wealth in addition to being able to survive on less. There has to be some reward for hard work!

  24. Sylvia

    I also subscribe by e-mail.

  25. Carolina Cooper

    I follow you on Facebook. Would love to win this book. Can lightening strike thrice in the same place. In this case, I hope so!

  26. Carolina Cooper

    I also read your column here.

  27. Lisa O

    I would love to win this book. I would share with a few younger women I know….

  28. marlene

    I would love to win this book.

  29. mdoe37

    With my upcoming change of life strategy, I really need to give this book a look!

  30. Subscribed to your writing newsletter. I’ve been a subscriber via Bloglovin for a while.

  31. What a thoughtful giveaway.

  32. Tracy Stone

    I’m signing up for the giveaway, but I’m going to get this book. I’d like to think that I know that kind of stuff, but it never hurts to learn something new.
    Also, when I was graduating from college almost thirty years ago, the car salesman patronized me and acted like I had no idea what I was doing. I went somewhere else and go a brand-new car. (I know, I know…) That’s the most obvious example I have, but it does still happen. Makes me so mad!

  33. Elena Rodriguez

    Sounds a like a great read! I’d love the learn how to budget better and make better choices.

  34. I am sure I would learn something from this book that would get my credit cards totally paid off. They aren’t that bad, but I want them gone.

  35. Receive your emails.

  36. Elena Rodriguez

    I subscribe via email.

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  39. Already receiving blog updates

  40. I would love to win this book. Sounds like something every woman should read!

  41. I subscribe to you via email. Needless to say, I love all of your information!

  42. Lake Livin'

    This book sounds great. I handle all of our finances and do a darn good job! It reminds me of when I was younger and people learned I was an engineer. They weren’t sure how to respond, but the bubble over their heads seemed to scream “but you’re a female and attractive, how can you possibly be smart?”

  43. Kim Porter

    This looks like a great book!

  44. I finally figured out how to negotiate when buying a car. I’m ready to learn more!

  45. I subscribe via feedburner

  46. I follow your tweets (moeyshay)

  47. I’m signed up for your WriteABlogPeopleWillRead weekly newsletter

  48. Glenna Henderson

    Facebook liked😊

  49. Glenna Henderson

    Email subscriber too

  50. thanks for this awesome giveaway. i am super interested in this book!

  51. I’m back!

  52. i like you on facebook

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  56. Sylvia Barrett

    This is a book I really want to read.

  57. Looks like an interesting and helpful book.

  58. I follow on twitter

  59. Jacqui B.

    Count me in – sounds like a great book!

  60. Amanda

    Hint: You can’t finance retirement. Is my favorite line and I would like to say it to many colleagues, I don’t because I dread the “You don’t know because you don’t have kids line”.

  61. Pam McCormick

    I have to have made every mistake possible
    I also have been the one paying the bill all the time
    If I had only known

  62. Sarah Belyeu

    Sounds great. I would love to read this.

  63. Simka Johnson

    Good and needed giveaway, Donna, thanks!
    Every marriage ends; death or divorce.
    Gotta take care of ourselves, friends and loved ones.

    Simka Johnson

  64. Sara Underwood

    I just wanted to add – I was the winner and I did read the book. One of the points they make in the book is about getting what you pay for, and not to be afraid to negotiate or ask for a refund. This week I bought something on eBay that was listed and new and when I received it it was clearly used (cosmetic item). In the past I would have been upset, but not assertive enough to ask the seller for a refund – but having just read this book I figured I’d get up the nerve to do it – and I got exactly what I asked for from the seller.

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