You know, there are some events that are so momentous, so earth-shaking, that we can remember exactly where we were the moment we first heard the news. For me, last week was one of those times.
First, allow me to set the stage.
Long time readers know I love House Hunters. No; I mean I really love that show.
Maybe too much.
Over the years I’ve made more than a couple passing references on
Continue reading Why Watching ‘House Hunters’ Will Never Be Quite the Same
One of my favorite bands, Maroon 5, has a hit single out right now entitled “Payphone” and, every time I hear it, I can’t help but wonder how many of their fans have ever used one.
Long before anybody ever heard of a cell phone, pay phones were everywhere. In addition to the iconic phone booths found at busy intersections, it was common knowledge that you could almost always find a
Continue reading The Vanishing Pay Phone: (Almost) Gone, But Not Forgotten
Giving out a loan is always a dicey proposition. After all, once you lend the money, there’s no guarantee it will be repaid.
The stakes are even higher when we lend money to our friends and family — or even cosign a loan — because we not only risk our hard-earned money, but we also endanger important personal relationships. Many people refuse to lend money to friends or family for precisely
Continue reading 3 True Loan Stories: How to Lend Money to Family & Friends
Most people who have emergency and rainy day funds use banks to keep their cash safe. However, it’s also wise to keep a home-based readily-accessible disaster fund in the event a situation arises that makes it impossible to withdraw the cash from those accounts — especially if merchants become, for whatever reason, unable or unwilling to conduct credit card transactions too.
The trick is in finding the perfect secret place for
Continue reading Your Disaster Fund and the Best Places to Hide Money in Your Home
This weekend I was pouring a little half-and-half into my cup of coffee (no, not Folgers) when I noticed something extremely disturbing: the creamer was 34 days beyond the expiration date printed on the carton top.
Yes, 34 days. I know.
Of course, the first thought that immediately crossed my mind was: You idiot!
Considering that I was on my third cup of the day, the next thought that popped into my head
Continue reading Is It Okay to Eat Foods Past Their Expiration Dates?
Annual tuition at K-8 private schools currently averages about $8,000.
That means over a nine-year period parents will end up spending $72,000 per child — as long as tuition rates never increase. (Insert laugh track here.)
Of course, most parents end up considering private education because they only want what is best for their child.
Well, today I’m going to show you why private school is absolutely not worth it – not only
Continue reading Why Private Schools Are Financial Rip Offs
Whether they know it or not, children depend on their parents to say “no” and make tough or unpopular decisions for their benefit. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to effectively enforce rules and boundaries without running your household like a dictatorship. That’s why I’m continually bewildered by parents who brag that they’re best friends with their kids; the roles are mutually exclusive. Parents who insist on being both blur the line of
Continue reading 100 Words On: Why You Should be a Parent, Not a Best Friend
Sometimes you just can’t put a price on things — and the intangible benefits of a stay-at-home parent is certainly one of them. At least it is to me.
According to the most recent US Census Bureau report, there are approximately 5.1 million stay-at-home moms in America; sadly, that equates to little more than one of every five married-couple family groups. I’m not too surprised.
The trouble is, being a stay-at-home mom isn’t
Continue reading 4 Financial Tips to Consider Before Becoming a Stay-at-Home Mom
This is another post in an occasional series from my dear nonagenarian Aunt Doris.
Aunt Doris' wedding photo. (c. 1946)
When I was in my early teens, Mum and I moved from Kensington to Notting Hill in London. (Yes, the same Notting Hill as the Julia Roberts movie.) Mum had bought a small sweet shop in a residential area; aside from a nearby corner pub, there were few other businesses in
Continue reading A Few Thoughts from Aunt Doris: The Neighborhood Bully
I wish I was as smart as my kids. They’re never wrong.
If you don’t believe me, just ask them.
As a matter of fact, I was reminded of that little “fact” last month after the Honeybee noticed that a couple of checks hadn’t been cashed by my daughter’s junior high school for fees related to her color guard activities.
Normally, we’d write a check out at the beginning of each month for
Continue reading When Is Not Stopping Payment on a Lost Check Worth the Risk?