Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: December 28, 2009

Post-Holiday Savings

Consumers should see a healthy selection of goods during post-holiday sales. Knowing where to look and how to make the most of these sales is crucial for avoiding long lines and getting the most bang for your buck.

• Shortly after the holidays, retailers will fill the newspapers, touting their sales. Take advantage of these sales by looking over the circulars in your area. Keep your eyes open for good deals on everyday items and even gifts for next year.

• If you are buying discounted sale merchandise, be sure you are fully aware of the return policy. Being able to return items for a full cash refund is a benefit that should not be overlooked.

• Being familiar with the warranty on the items that you purchase can save you time, money, and frustration, especially when it comes to appliances, computers, or other electronics. If you're unfamiliar with the store, read reviews to see if you can gauge customer satisfaction.

• Lastly, if you're not willing to brave the post-holiday shopping traffic or crowds, consider waiting until after the New Year when sales and money-saving opportunities will be just as plentiful.


www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: December 21, 2009

What Investors Need to Understand to Avoid Fraud

As most investors know, risk is an inherent part of investing; it is what makes the reward of positive returns possible. Too often, investors focused on big returns are persuaded to enter into what turn out to be fraudulent schemes promising the moon and the stars for little or no risk. Here are some resources to help educate you:

Tricks of the Trade: Outsmarting Investment Fraud – FINRA Investor Education.

Investment Fraud Awareness Quiz – North American Securities
Administrators Association.

Consumer Fraud/Investor Protection Resources – Employee Benefit Research Institute/Choose to Save.

Click here to see a list of all 12 resources for understanding and avoiding fraud, by the nonprofit Alliance for Investor Education (AIE).

For more information on investing and fraud prevention, visit the Investment Planning section

of the 360 Financial Literacy website.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: December 07, 2009

Winter Savings Tips

This winter, keep your family cozy and your wallet insulated by following
these easy steps:

• Dial back your thermostat 1 degree cooler during the winter season to help slash your energy bill.

• Caulk around window frames, door frames and seams on the outside of the house to keep heat in and cold air out.

• Take advantage of your body's natural heat. Wear sweaters, warm socks and long pants around the house.

• Use a programmable thermostat to automatically control your home's temperature. It can keep your house cooler during the day and warmer during the evenings. This could save you an average of $180 a year.

Following these tips can immediately reduce your energy costs. Learn more Winter Savings Tips.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Vendor Reviews

Hola! I know I have been MIA, but I have really been enjoying being his Mrs.! I did, however, want to be sure that I shared our experiences and vendor reviews.

You can see them here.

NOTE: This is not a complete list as I have not reviewed our photographer nor videographer. Instead of the rating system, I based my reviews on whether or not I would rehire a particular vendor.


PS: I hope this helps a fellow bride :)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: November 17, 2009

First-time Homeowner Tax Credit Extended
with Important Changes

On November 6, 2009, President Obama signed into law the Worker, Homeownership and Business Assistance Act of 2009, which includes a provision to extend the first-time homebuyer tax credit originally created in July 2008 with the Housing and Economic Recovery Act. This extension applies for new homes purchased before May 1, 2010; for members of the military whose duties have taken them overseas, the credit extends until May of 2011.

The new legislation includes some important changes for those buying a home after it was signed into law. These changes include:

• Higher income limits now apply. The credit is reduced if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) exceeds $125,000 ($225,000 if married filing a joint return) and is completely eliminated if your MAGI is $145,000 ($245,000 if
married filing a joint return).

• A credit of up to $8,000 will still apply to qualifying first-time buyers, and a smaller credit of up to $6,500 will now apply to families that have lived in their homes for at least five years and wish to purchase a new home.

• If you (and your spouse, if you're married) have maintained the same principal residence for at least five consecutive years in the eight year period ending at the time you purchase a new principal residence, you could qualify for a credit of up to $6,500 ($3,250 if you're married and file separately).

For more information and to decide if taking advantage of these new rules is for you, visit the White House’s Fact Sheet on the Worker, Homeownership and Business Assistance Act or the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Web site for details on the original Housing and Economic Recovery Act.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Bob Evans Farmhouse Feast Giveaway

NOTE: This giveaway is being featured at $5 Dinners.

How would you like to have THIS…

…delivered WARM to your doorstep?!? Just in time for your holiday meal…or your holiday party…or just for dinner!

The Bob Evans Holiday Farmhouse Feast is the perfect solution for a cookless, low-stress holiday season.

The Farmhouse Feast comes complete with Bob Evans’ signature slow-roasted boneless turkey breast or sliced, boneless ham, bread and celery dressing, mashed potatoes with gravy, buttered sweet corn, green beans with ham, cranberry orange relish, rolls, a loaf of pumpkin bread and a pumpkin pie with whipped topping. The turkey and ham are both pre-cooked.

Bob Evans will also be offering the Farmhouse Feast anytime during December for your holiday entertaining or your Christmas meal. If you are interested in ordering, you can learn more on their website. The website contains ordering information, heating instructions, and a FAQ page.

So here’s how you can get this meal delivered to your doorstep…

Go to $5 Dinners to enter!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: November 9, 2009

Smart Use of Credit Cards

As the country begins to recover from the recession, retails sales are improving and, along with them, credit card use is on the rise, according to MasterCard Advisors. As the holiday shopping season begins, keep the following in mind when applying for or using a credit card:

• Most credit cards offer rewards, such as airline tickets, cash back, car insurance or other incentives. Paying off your monthly balance to avoid interest will allow you to fully reap the benefits of the card.

• Credit card applications may often contain low interest rates to attract customers. Before you sign, research varying interest rates, minimum payment requirements, grace periods, annual fees and credit limits.

• Understand the impact that cancelling a credit card will have on your credit score. If the card is one that you've had for awhile and consistently paid off, it could negatively affect your credit rating.

• Using credit card pay off calculators will help you realize what it will take to pay off your balance, and what personal spending habits you can change to meet your repayment goals.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: October 5, 2009

Calculate How Much You’re Worth

Do you know how much you'll be worth when retirement comes? A recent Gallup Poll revealed that 52 percent of Americans are worried they won’t have enough money to live comfortably once they retire. Use this Retirement Estimator Calculator to determine your Social Security earnings and help plan for the future.

Additionally, non-retirees expect to rely on several income sources in retirement. For more information on these income sources, click the links below:

Social Security
Stocks or mutual fund investments
Savings accounts or CDs
401(k) or other retirement accounts
Annuities or insurance plans
Home equity
Pension plans

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: September 28, 2009

Credit cards can help build a good credit history but improper use can be disastrous. Being knowledgeable and reading the fine print may save you money and prevent unnecessary charges. If you have one or more credit cards, consider the following tips:

• Credit card applications may offer low interest rates to attract customers. Before you sign, research the card’s varying interest rates, minimum payment requirements, grace periods, annual fees and credit limits before you
open a new account.

• Make payments on time to avoid possible automatic rate increases and other credit card pitfalls.

• Pay off your monthly balance to avoid interest and to fully reap the benefits or rewards your card may come with (cash back, frequent flier miles, etc.).

• Understand the effect that cancelling a credit card will have on your credit score. If the card is one that you've had for awhile and consistently paid off, it could negatively affect your credit rating.

• Credit bureaus offer a toll-free number that enables you to “opt-out” of having pre-approved credit offers sent to you. Call 1-888-5-OPTOUT (888-567-8688) or visit www.optoutprescreen.com for more information.

Read more on paying off credit card debt.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: September 21, 2009

Fall Saving Strategies

As the summer months wane and the chilly weather of fall begins, consider doing some upkeep on your home in order to save on energy costs. Here are some simple ways to ensure that your house and wallet are properly insulated:

• Clean or replace your furnace filters once a month. Dirty filters can block warm air from the furnace and make it operate less efficiently, costing you money.

• Lower your thermostat 5 to 7 degrees at night. Your energy savings will increase as much as 3-5 percent for every degree the thermostat is below 68.

• Keep your shades and curtains open during the day to let in sunlight and warmth. Close them at night to retain heat.

• Weatherize your home by caulking and weather-stripping all exterior
doors and windows.

Learn more fall savings tips.

Have any other green ideas that will help you save this season? Register on www.FeedthePig.org to post your comments on the message boards!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Bridal Brunch: September 13, 2009

This past Sunday I had the pleasure of enjoying brunch with one of my bridesmaids and a couple of coworkers. Since we don't live close to either of our families, I won't have a traditional bridal shower, but I thought it was awesome of my coworkers to celebrate us!

Mimosas, waffles, omelets, crab legs, and shrimp - YUM! And don't forget CAKE!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Our hostesses and ushers are an extra-special part/addition to our day. They will be :uber: important in making sure our guests are comfortable and everyone is happy at the reception. They will be wearing the wedding colors so that they stand out, and we've decided on this
and this for the guys (with black slacks and black shirts):

Monday, September 14, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: September 14, 2009

End-of-Life PlanLife can change quite suddenly and unexpectedly. Decision-making during these stressful and vulnerable times can be difficult and the results can often have far–reaching consequences. The key is knowing the issues and having a plan in place before the unexpected happens.
Whether you are currently dealing with the loss of a loved one, caring for an aging parent, or own a business or have children and need to be ready for the future, a new free resource, A Guide to Financial Decisions: Implementing an End-of-Life Plan, will identify many of the issues, decisions and programs of which you should be aware, such as:- Guardianship for Minor Children: Choosing the person who will care for your child if you are unable to do so is a critical decision for all parents. Learn why it’s important to name a guardian in a legally executed will or trust so that your children are cared for by the person you designate.- Titles: Choosing the person to be the listed owner, or “title holder,” to your various assets, such as your home and financial accounts, is an important decision. Learn more about the steps to take to ensure that your wishes are known and respected.- Life Insurance: One of the most common reasons for buying life insurance is to replace the loss of income that would occur in the event of your death. Learn about the common types of life insurance policies to ensure there are funds available to support your family in the case of your untimely death.This guide, developed by certified public accountants, is the result of a vision brought to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants by Hospice of Michigan and the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants.
For more information, visit the 360 Degrees of Financial Literacy Web site.Visit http://click.bsftransmit1.com/ClickThru.aspx?pubids=lOq6Zi%2bzrWLqi1JWXun6Jc8No6wyvjR7QQxjXtqXYuE%3d&digest=P3VNOIwDruOLOUTSdVW0%2bg for more money-saving tips!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Our Photo Guestbook

Can you believe I ordered this from Picaboo (half off) on 09/08...and UPS dropped it off on 09/10?!?!?!? Can we say unbelievable service??

Great quality. Here are a couple of the pages. I'll have black, pink, and metallic gold pens for guests to sign.

(Excuse the crappy Blackberry pics).

EDIT: I hopped on over to Michaels (armed with a 40% off coupon) and grabbed some metallic-y writing scrapbooking markers and it's done!

YAY for checks!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: September 9, 2009

Annuities as an Investment Option

Your retirement may be decades away but it’s important to start saving and investing now. Consider annuities, a retirement funding strategy that was often neglected in the face of a boom economy. Now, however, the stability of an annuity often looks just as appealing as other retirement funding options. Here are some basic facts to help you decide whether an annuity might be right for you:

- An annuity is a tax-deferred investment contract. You invest your money (either a lump sum or a series of contributions) with a company that sells annuities, such as life insurance and mutual fund companies and banks. In exchange for your investment, the annuity issuer promises to make payments to you or a named beneficiary at certain points in the future.

- Rates of return and costs can vary widely between different annuities, so shop around! You'll also want to shop around for a reputable, financially sound annuity issuer. There are firms that make a business of rating insurance companies based on their financial strength, investment performance, and other factors.

- Payout options, also known as annuitization options, differ based on how you’ve elected to spread payments over the coming years. The amount of each payment depends on such factors as the amount of your principal investment, the particular type of annuity, the length of the payout period and your age if you elect for
lifetime payments.

Annuities may be a good option to explore if you’re looking for investment options outside the stock market. As with any investment, remember to research and educate yourself before making any decisions. For more information visit the Retirement Planning section of the 360 Financial Literacy website.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Invitation LOVE!

If you remember, I posted here about how I just wasn't in love with my invitations. Even admist catering issues, I set out to find those that made me drool. I enlisted the help of my wonderful SIL (designedbygrace09@gmail.com) and dearest FI... Without further delay, here are the mock-ups of our invitations.

And of course, Mr. CB hard at work...

My darling SIL worked hard and never griped about my million edits. She even enlisted again to do our programs. Unfortunately, we never took any pictures of the programs, BUT they are GORGE.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: August 17, 2009

What's Your Financial IQ?

According to a recent survey conducted by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, almost half of Americans between the ages of 18 and 34 have no savings. Additionally, 47 percent of Generation Y respondents gave themselves Cs, Ds or Fs in personal finance skills such as budgeting and saving for retirement.

The time to act is now! Take this short quiz to test your financial literacy IQ so you can improve your personal finance savvy.

This quiz is a good starting point, but the more you educate yourself on personal finances and savings, the more prepared you'll be when facing financial situations in the future. Be smart, and remember to feed the pig!

Visit Feed the Pig for more money-saving tips.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip - August 10, 2009

Avoid Overdraft Fees

Did you know the median overdraft fee on a checking account is $26? Here are steps to take to avoid this penalty:

1. Don't trust your "Available Balance." Many financial institutions engage in a practice where they will reflect a direct deposit in your "Available Balance" but will charge overdraft fees on any transactions that occur prior to the deposit actually posting. Any purchases that are made which exceed the previous running balance during the time BEFORE the direct deposit actually posts will result in overdraft charges even though the bank shows the funds as available.

2. Balance your checkbook. Not only will balancing your checkbook help you avoid overdraft fees, but it'll also give you a firm knowledge of how much money is in your account, which helps you prevent bounced checks and detect errors from your bank.

3. Pay cash. Or use a debit card. When you don't pay with a check, you don't have to worry about when the payment will clear. Many people forget that they've written checks, then spend the money that should have been sitting in the account for the check to clear.

4. Create an artificial buffer. Decide on a certain amount that you will always have in your account, and never dip into it. Subtract it out of your checkbook so that the balance you see is what you can spend.

Visit Feed the Pig for more money-saving tips!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Invitations - How Important Are They?

So. In my humble opinion, invitations set the tone for your celebration. I had previously had some designed, but have since fell out of love with them. Here they are:

Don't get me wrong, they are nice - but they just don't have that WOW factor that I'm looking for.

With that being said, I stumbled across these. Can we just say absolutely GAW-JUS?!?!?!? Oh my! However, can I get these designed, printed and mailed in 3 weeks?

At any rate, ENJOY!

Images from Etsy
And these:

Images from PW's Jojo

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Beer, Wine and Bellini Bar?

Technically a Bellini is white peach puree and Prosecco. That’s it. However, it seems that today people loosely associate the term Bellini with just about any fruit and Prosecco combination.

The day before the party I can make several fruit purees so they would be ready to go the next day. These are super easy to make. At that time of year using frozen fruit will probably be best

Here's the recipe for the fruit puree:

Fruit Puree
1 pound of frozen fruit, such as strawberries, peaches or blueberries, defrosted
1/3 - 1/2 cup simple syrup

Place the frozen fruit in a blender. Add some of the simple syrup and a splash of water. Blend until the mixture is very smooth. You will need to pause the blender now and then to taste, add a bit more simple syrup until the fruit has reached your desired level of sweetness. Once that has been reached add enough water to make the puree thin enough to pour.

Puree can be made a day or two ahead of time and held in the refrigerator.

At the wedding, the guests can choose which flavors appeal to them and even mix purees to make their own custom blends. In addition to the purees we may offer other options such as orange juice (which, when mixed with sparkling wine actually makes a Mimosa) or fruit nectars such as Guava or Mango. The addition of the fruit juices also adds a non-alcoholic option for your guests.

With that being said, what do you think of my beer, wine, and bellini bar menu to help keep costs low for our celebration?

Welcome to Macon! - OOT Box

Found these today and fell in LOVE. Our boxes will have a "Georgia" theme and include a welcome brochure, old-timey glass bottle of Coca-Cola Classic, peach candles, personalized matches, snacks, and either peach preserves or some type of University of Georgia memorabilia.

Weekly Savings Tip: August 3, 2009

Back-to-School Savings

With the beginning of another year of school around the corner, it’s a good idea to get an early start on back-to-school shopping.

• Buy a lunch box. Constantly buying brown paper bags is not only a waste of paper, it’s also a waste of money. Buy your child a lunch box and pack their lunches. For fun and easy bag lunch ideas, check the internet for sites like this.

• Start a “back-to-school” fund. Shopping for school supplies can be costly and seem like a big expense if taken all at once. Start a fund for next year’s supplies at the beginning of this school year. Next year, not only will you already have saved money, but by stashing it into a savings account, the interest might net you an extra notebook.

• Don’t waste leftovers. Check the unused supplies from the previous year. There might be extra notebooks, folders and pencils lying around the house.

• Check for coupons. Don’t underestimate the power of shopping early before the prices are increased for back-to-school items. Buy in bulk if you get a good deal—stored school supplies have a long shelf life. If you are shopping for clothing, always shop for the previous season once the new one starts.

• Forget about designer labels. This is true not only for clothing, but school supplies as well. There is always a generic version of an article of clothing or school supply that is much less expensive but just as good.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: July 28, 2009

Saving Your Social Life Without Hurting Your Savings

Saving money during the summer can be tough if you have an active social life or like to travel on the weekends. Here are some great tips for inexpensive outings to help both your social life and your budget.

• Go out on a picnic: Picnics are much less expensive than dining out and can be an all-day or afternoon activity. Invite friends to play Frisbee or touch football after you eat. If you are planning a date, make it more romantic by going somewhere with a lot of natural beauty to enjoy.

• Visit a museum or historic building: Visiting a museum or historic building isn’t just for tourists and admission prices are usually reasonable. You can also look for free, reduced price or “pay what you want” days or evenings.

• Spend the evening at your place: An underrated way to spend time is to have everyone over to your house. Ask everyone to bring ingredients for a dish to cook together and rent a movie to end the night.

• Take advantage of the summer weather: Grab a couple of friends or your significant other and head to the beach. Enjoy the entire day in the water or on the sand without spending a lot of money. When it gets dark walk into the local town for dinner or ice cream.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

From Essence: The Obamas’ Relationship Stimulus Plan: Their 7 Secrets for a Rock-Solid Partnership

I LOVE to hear of positive relationships, so I thought I'd share...

"I find President and Mrs. Obama to be so much more relatable than any previous White House occupants. And it's not just their brown skin. Two kids. Two careers. PB&J in the pantry and playthings in the yard. They seem a lot like my husband and me. And as they approach 17 years of marriage, they always appear so loving toward each other. When I see reports of them having date night at the theater or in an intimate bistro, I'm frequently reminded that it's the little things, done consistently, that make love last. Barack and Michelle demonstrate that brand of authentic commitment we see often in our communities but so rarely in the media. As I look forward to celebrating seven years with my sweetie next month, I thought I'd share (and remember to take to heart) seven keys to Love, Obama Style.

1. Insist on couple time. For parents, that means not letting the time and energy you spend nourishing your kids result in you starving your marriage. The First Couple's weekend in Paris this spring is a great example of getting the balance just right. While sightseeing on the river Seine and at Notre Dame was a family affair, mom and dad enjoyed an intimate dinner alone at a cozy restaurant later.

2. Keep your promises, no matter what. "I am taking my wife to New York City because I promised her during the campaign that I would take her to a Broadway show after it was all finished," the President told reporters at the airport on the way to another much-publicized night on the town. By the time he was able to make good on the promise, pulling it off was no longer as simple as ordering a couple of tickets. Two helicopters, a small Air Force jet, barricades to keep the paparazzi at bay and security screenings at both the restaurant and the theater were required to make the evening a success. Given all the fuss, he could have easily begged off. But he decided to stay true to his boo.

3. Praise each other in public, share constructive feedback in private. Playful quips about dirty socks aside, Mrs. Obama has frequently shared that she fell in love with her husband's authenticity, truth and principles. The President speaks adoringly of his better half, calling her "the love of my life" in his victory speech, "good looking" at the Inaugural and even "a better dancer" on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

4. Touch each other, often. She holds his hand. He places one on the small of her back while walking. These little wordless ways of saying "you matter to me" can create a bond stronger than that Mighty Mendit Super Glue sold on infomercials.

5. Share and support your spouse's dreams without losing sight of your own. You say you want to be the first Black man in the White House? How many wives would have said "Um, good luck with that!" Our partners face the world with a "Yes we can" attitude when we show them our unflinching belief in their goals and abilities. But don't look to Mrs. Obama to support the status quo as a cookie-cutter consort. She's redefining the role of First Lady in a way that stays true to her own ideals and passions.

6. Read and respect one another's signals. When things are tense, you may not feel like talking. Picking up on nonverbal cues is key. During the campaign, a Ladies Home Journal reporter asked Michelle "How can you tell when your husband is really stressed?" "When he is writing small notes late at night. When he's really brooding," Mrs. O. said. "That's when I know [to ask], ‘What happened? What's going on?'"

7) Laugh—and pray!—together often. The Obamas share giggles and gaffaws on a regular basis. They also share God. I'm glad to know that after months of church shopping in their new city, they've found, in a chapel at Camp David, a new place to call their spiritual home."

Monday, July 20, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: July 20, 2009

Get a Jump on Your Holiday Budget

While it is still summer outside, the end of the year holiday season isn’t far away for your budget. Planning now will help you manage your spending in a few more months.

• Set aside $10 a week now and you will have saved $200 by early December. That’s a small amount to pull from your wallet each week but can equal gifts for many friends and family members down the road. You will also avoid interest charges by
saving and using cash.

• Look for sales now for items you think your friends and family might like. Winter clothing, or other gifts that will still be appropriate in a few months, might be on sale this time of year. Get a jump on all the other holiday shoppers who won’t be thinking about gifts for months.

• Consider homemade gifts. Starting now will give you plenty of time to finish well before the holidays. Knit sweaters, make candles, create stationery out of photographs you take or make jam out of fresh, summer fruit. Homemade gifts are always appreciated and there are many ideas and suggestions online that are far more upscale than the macaroni necklace you made for your mother in preschool.

Remember: budgeting and planning ahead for your holiday gift giving can save you money. Decide how much you are able to spend and how many gifts you need to buy before doing your shopping. And, as always, make sure you are buying a sale item that is actually worth the listed price and not just because it is on sale.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

And It's Booked! Punta Cana - Here We Come!

We have decided to spend our first vacation as husband and wife at the Gran Bahia Principe Ambar, which is an ADULTS ONLY LUXURY resort, situated within the Bahia Principe complex. Private sections of the beach, pool and restaurants will make your stay the most romantic experience of you life.

Smoke a cigar in our Cigar Lounge or take a relaxing bath in a Jacuzzi in the privacy of your own room. Sleep with your favorite pillow from the pillow-menu.

Sidenote: This may the be ONLY time in life when it's appropriate to order "one of everything!"

Feeling lazy? Call your private butler for whatever you need.

Want a little more action? Ambar members can use all the facilities from the Gran Bahia Principe Punta Cana resort. At night, the hotel has its own Shopping & entertainment center which is open 24hrs, called PUEBLO PRINCIPE. It includes shops, disco, casino, shows, live music, doctor and much more...

Did they really say private butlers?!?!?!

...and a pic of my hunnie just because :)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: July 14, 2009

Maintaining Good Credit in Turbulent Times

Sustaining a good credit score can be difficult when you are unemployed and money is tight. Here are some tips to maintain your financial health.

• Immediately evaluate expenditures, bills and financial accounts for strengths and weaknesses. Adjust your budget accordingly and minimize discretionary spending. Identify where you can lower or perhaps cut out expenses for entertainment, dining out and vacation or holiday travel.

• Contact your financial institution to inquire if it offers a hardship program. If so, you may be able to negotiate a payment plan that may include reduced interest rates and/or a lower monthly payment.

• Understand the impact that cancelling a credit card will have on your credit score. If the card is one that you've had for some time and consistently paid off, it could negatively affect your credit rating.

A credit score is based on your bill-paying history, debt profile and other statistical information. Lenders use this to determine the likelihood of certain credit behaviors, including whether you will pay on time. Closed accounts, liens, bankruptcies and late payments are a few of the financial missteps that can negatively impact your credit score for up to 11 years.

Remember to make looking for a job your top priority. If you need more help, go to fixing your credit score, or visit 360 Financial Literacy’s website.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Weekly Savings Tip: July 6, 2009

New Clunker Bill Can Help You Save

Recently, the House passed the “clunker bill” which allows you to trade in your older, gas guzzling car, for a $4,500 discount on a new and more fuel efficient car. The bill was created as a way to both stimulate the automotive industry and help the environment. With the discount from the bill and the markdowns that certain car dealerships are offering, there are some great deals to be had. Here are some things to remember if you are considering taking part in this year-long deal.

• Research typical maintenance costs for the make and model of the car you are planning to buy. Sometimes maintenance on a particular vehicle is more expensive than average resulting in unanticipated costs.

• Consider a possible increase in car insurance rates when weighing the best deal. Call your insurance agency to find out how to reduce the insurance costs on a new car. These deductions are based on both the model of your car and its features such as passive restraints, alarms, or even anti-lock braking systems.

• Remember that not all cars qualify. Your current car must get less than 18 mpg highway and the new car must get at least 22. You can check out
your car’s mpg here http://www.fueleconomy.gov/.

Visit www.FeedthePig.org for more money-saving tips.

It's Here: My Garter

Mr. CB is a graduate of Albany State University in Albany, Georgia. His school colors are blue and gold and the mascot is Ram. Thanks to the St. Louis Rams and their matching colors, my garter search was pretty easy.

Courtesy of GirlyGirl Garters