The personal finance community is filled with so many talented writers and truly inspiring people and families who want something much different in life than the traditional plan of buying lots of stuff and retiring in their 60s.  Here is a look at the best of this week’s personal finance blogs.

In this episode of Friday Feast: Living A FI, The Middle Finger Project, The College Investor, RetireBy40, Mr. Money Mustache, GoCurryCracker, Our Next Life, DebtlessInTexas.

readingFirst, I love reading stories by those who recently quit their job and started living for themselves, job free, with a respectable investment portfolio to grow old with.  That is exactly what Living A FI did and wrote about his first three months of retirement.  It looks like somebody is catching up on some R&R.

As The Middle Finger Project so eloquently put it, there is one basic and profound difference between people who make money and people who don’t: the money!  This fun, down to earth blog post takes readers through the simple reality of making money in this world, and the only thing that you really need to do is “figure out how to get people to give it to you”.  Simple, right?

What’s the next best thing to figure out after getting people to give you their money?  Correct, it’s saving that money, and that is where a guest blog on The College Investor comes in.  The strategy included saving 75% of after tax income each month.  My wife and I generally save in the neighborhood of 70%, so it’s not tough.  It just takes some discipline.  Oh, and a desire to be successful!

Do you have an early retirement checklist of things to accomplish before officially cutting the cord on your job?  RetireBy40 does, and he explained the checklist recently that includes some common – and not so common – areas of your life to consider and take stock in before you give the finger to corporate America.

Home ownership is the “American Dream” or something like that, isn’t it?  But don’t let the so-called dream, whatever it is these days, get in the way of smart financial decision-making.  Mr. Money Mustache penned a poignant article this week that described the virtues of renting rather than owning, and teaches us that owning real estate does not always turn out to be a wise investment, even when you believe you’re making money off the sale – you may not be making much at all, right Go Curry Cracker?

Our Next Life wrote a very timely piece that talks about how they are taking a more moderate approach to downsizing, keeping some of the stuff that truly brings them joy even though those things may not be considered, I don’t know, “essential”, by some.  As they call it, it’s “right-sizing” your life.  The piece is timely because of its similarity with my own about minimalism, also published this week.  I’m convinced great minds think alike.

As an aside, I’m glad to report that DebtlessInTexas is back in business after a bit of a hiatus after the birth of his first child.  I’m glad to see that he and the family are doing well and that he’s back in the saddle, ready to rock.