When most people think about investing, visions of stock charts and IRA spreadsheets may dance through their heads. But investments don't have to stop there. Let's take a look at a non-traditional investment: investing in a small business venture:

Although most people know it is unwise to pay in too much money in taxes every year, it's rather easy to do so. When tax overpayment happens, tax refunds are the result. This can often leave people wondering what to do with all that extra cash. Okay, maybe not wondering what to do (that new T.V. may be calling your name...), but it might leave you wondering what you should do with a hefty refund. Here are the basics about the wisest decisions for a windfall of cash.

Pay Down Debts

Money doesn't grow on trees, but you can learn to invest and grow your wealth.

Stocks can seem intimidating to first-time investors, but they're really not all that bad. Stocks are actually rather simple to understand, once you know a few basics. And once you have those basics down, you can master the more advanced. To help convince you that Wall Street is much more friendly than you might think, we've created a MomVesting guide to stocks.

Last week was rough. I felt overwhelmed by the what-ifs in life, underwhelmed by an illness, and basically “whelmed” (under and over) by my husband’s coinciding business trip. I was fried.

At this point, anything would have sent me into a tailspin, and one little thing did push me over the edge. Thankfully, a stranger invested a little of his time into my life, and his kindness put me back on track to sanity. Here’s how investing in a stranger can help you both:

The Week from Hell

Investing can seem overwhelming, but finding the investment type best suited to your personality is possible. Let's look at three common sayings to help identify what types of investments are the best fits for you.

Hindsight is 20/20

Parades. Fireworks. Bomb pops. Barbeque. On this July 4th, I’m taking in all four, and I feel pretty patriotic…but at the same time not as red-white-and-blue as I could be. This leaves me wondering how I can invest in our U.S. of A.

Short of enlisting in our fabulous Armed Forces (which, in my case, is unfortunately impossible), what can you or I do to invest in our great country? Let’s look at a few of my ideas, and then please add your own in the comments section below!

Support Our Troops

In today's economy, after the real estate crash, it may seem strange for some people to even consider real estate as an investment opportunity. For most of us, the house we live in is enough real estate risk. You may wonder why anyone would want to purchase an investment house right now, especially if you were one of the many people burned by the housing crisis. Others may feel the same way about investing in the stock market. Why invest now, when our economy is still struggling?

So, let’s say you have $10,000 to invest (I wish I did, too). You could buy $10,000 worth of a stock -- all at one time -- and hope the value goes up. Or you could purchase shares of a stock in smaller bunches over a longer period time to increase your odds of buying at a lower price — and to decrease your market risk.

This tactic is called dollar cost averaging, and it could save you a lot of dough in losses should your stock choice crash. Still not making much sense? Let’s look at this idea a little closer, with a hypothetical example.

There seems to be a trend going on in the world revolving around the idea that less is more. Frugality is making a comeback. Saving pennies for a rainy day has become more appealing than splurging for the latest "better than botox" cream. It's no wonder than some of us (present company included) fancy saving over investing. It's safe, steady, and what we've been taught to do for so many years, plus investing could be the same as gambling our hard-earned dollars away. Right? Sure, no one is going to say you shouldn't save money.

You are never done learning.  That is one of the most important things to know about investing. But the idea of perpetual learning can be intimidating, so sometimes it's a good idea to have some support. In a recent article we brought up the idea of joining an investment club. It’s a great way to build your confidence and gain some great new friends in the process. 

We’ll look at starting your own investment club later.  For now, let’s talk a little about the considerations of joining an existing club: