Friday, November 30, 2012

$1000 Target Gift Card . . . yes, it's another scam

Last night, I recieved a text message that I won a $1000 Target Gift Card.

Yeah!  Christmas gifts for all!

But wait . . . it told me I had to click on the Target link and enter a five-digit code within the next 24 hours in order to claim it.

I thought, I have to . . . what?

Now, I fill out a lot of store surveys and I could've easily done one for Target.  But I don't recall ever entering my cell number.  Next step, Google!  Guess what I found?


Bottom line: if you get this kind of text message, delete it immediately.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

100 wedding blogs . . . all in one spot!

You've set the date.  You've sat down with your fiancee and put together a wedding budget.

Now what?

What if there was a website one could go to that compiled tons of the top wedding sites?

There is! by Bride tide is that source.  They list the top 100 wedding blogs, and even have links to wedding trends for 2013.  (I won't spoil the fun, you'll have to check them out for yourselves.)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Need a job idea? Be a personal shopper.

Last week I was listening to one of Dave Ramsey's radio programs when someone asked him for ideas on second jobs.  He listed several, many involving starting something small that one can do oneself like lawn mowing or dog grooming, and then he mentioned a job that would be perfect for this time of year--or any, for that matter.

A personal shopper.

Instead of someone waking up early on Black Friday and fighting with the crowd, they hire you to do it.  Or, you may have a career couple who just doesn't have time to buy any Christmas presents.  Ta-da!  They hire you!

It's an interesting concept with an almost infinite realm of possibilities.

How much to charge?  It's all up to you.

If this works out and you try it, please let me know your success stories.  Please share them in the comments section.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Free Education!

Does your son or daughter need help with an algebra assignment they're struggling with?

How about something from US or European History?

Want to know a little more about biology or chemistry or physics but either don't have your old college textbooks or don't feel like cracking them open?

Never fear.  Be sure to check out the Khan Academy.

With over 3,500 videos on a variety of subjects, from the ones noted above to dozens upon dozens of others, this is the epitome of FREE EDUCATION at its finest.  One can earn accomplishments the more videos you go through, as you increase your knowledge about any number of topics.

Want to know more about black holes or the birth of stars?  How about an in-depth look at microeconomics?

Then check out the Khan Academy.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Place to stay in Rochester, MN: 5th Avenue Inn and Suites

For those living on a budget and you need an inexpensive place to stay while in Rochester, Minnesota, you may want to give the 5th Avenue Inn and Suites a call.

Located less than 2 blocks from the Mayo Clinic, it's an easy place to walk to.  Underneath Mayo are a number of nearby hotels with connecting tunnels.  Even though the 5th Avenue Inn and Suites isn't connected tunnel-wise, tunnel entrances are not far away.

5th Avenue Inn and Suites offer three full floors of rooms, all overlooking an inner balcony and an open floor on the second floor.  Here, there are tables and comfortable recliners--yours truly had to test a number of these out on his last visit--and a bookshelf with books, magazines, puzzles, and games.

There is a small pool on the first floor, which was roughly five feet deep at the deepest and three at the shallowest, was perfect for my three children.  The continental breakfast didn't offer many choices, however, when compared with a few of the other places I've visited while in Rochester, MN.  But, if your breakfast choice of pastries, donuts, toast, and cereal is all you need, then there won't be any complaints.

For my family of five, the rooms offered enough space for us to roam around.  Overall, it's a pleasant place to stay and the close proximity to the Mayo Clinic give it an added plus.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Overwhelmed with debt? Try this simple 4-part strategy.

I know how it goes: you sit down for a meal and the phone rings.  Which creditor is it this time?  You are the epidemy of "so-much-of-the-month-left-at-the-end-of-the-money" and the "living-paycheck-to-paycheck".  Trust me, I've been there and got the T-shirt.  Not proud of it, and at times lately we're still struggling with that--hence the reason I posted a "Please Donate" button on my blogs.

Are you so overwhelmed with debt that you don't know where to start?

Dave Ramsey speaks on this often, and he mentions what he calls the four corners of your financial foundation.  This is about priorities--something my wife also reminds me of.  Would you let your kids starve but need to stay current on your Discover or Citi or Chase or American Express bill?  No way!  If you are unable to do anything else, it is recommended that these four areas be your focus.  And what money is left--if there is any--gets allocated to the debts.

The four corners are:





Once these four areas are met, you will also start to feel better because it's idiotic to stay current on your credit cards when your house is close to foreclosure.  Set your priorities.

**Please keep in mind, the advice given above is only my opinion, and your situation may be different so it would be adviseable to seek legal counsel**

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

How do I find the top wedding blogs?

You're just starting plans for your wedding.  Now, where to begin?

There is a wealth of information out there, and I've put together much of it here.  Just click on the "wedding" tag at the end of this blog to see a compliation of what's been written so far.

Bride Tide has put together their Top 100 Wedding Blog Sites.  Now, this may seem overwhelming at first, but you can quickly scroll down the list to see if there are any that stands out.  What I'll do over the next course few months is highlight a few of the more interesting ones.

So be sure to check out Bride Tide's Top 100 Wedding Blogs and start gathering ideas for your special day today!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Can't buy a car with cash? Think again.

Think that the only way to get a car is to take out a loan?  Perish the thought.  Here's a video below from Dave Ramsey that shows how you can, using the power of saving your hard-earned cash over time, can afford a decent car in no time--and with no payments!

Because, quite frankly, if you lost your job or had an unexpected financial event, you may find the Repo Man in your driveway before too long.


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Five More Months Before The Start Of The Wedding Season

The typical wedding season starts in April, five months from today.

Is your wedding being planned for the summer of 2013?  If so, then you're probably already planning for it.

There are many resources available on planning your wedding--many are listed by clicking the wedding tab along the side of this blog to sort through them all--and one such is the ebook 99 Ways To Have A Memorable Wedding On A Shoestring Budget which is available through the Amazon Kindle site.