Put the solution in 'resolution:' 10 steps to financial sanity in 2010

baby steps
baby steps

Last year at this time, one writer -- and only one -- in the entire Chicago Tribune features department was either brave or foolish enough to bare his family finances for all to see: yours truly.

In a two-page spread, I outlined 10 steps to a better family budget, using my own experiences with debt, savings and spending habits as the template. This led in short order to a roller coaster ride I could never have anticipated:

  1. taunts from twisted readers who bombarded me with mean comments about how dumb my wife and I were.

  2. a gig as the Tribune's recession columnist.

  3. getting laid off by the Tribune about a month later.

  4. hundreds of well wishes from fans who couldn't believe the Tribune would lay off the Recession Guy.

  5. and finally: an immediate invitation from WalletPop editor Beth Pinsker Gladstone to move my "Recession Diaries" column to AOL, which I did.