My dad’s birthday is coming up next month, and he is making the big 65! I have been trying to think of something special to buy him. I keep thinking of a great pocket watch for him. There is something nostalgic about them, and he used to tell us stories about his grandfather’s watch. I think this will be a great memento that would be great for him to pass on to his grandchildren one day.
Category: Family Life
This weekend I was scouring a free paper we receive that is basically a whole paper full of classifieds ads. There are great deals listed at times so I like to browse since you never know what will be listed. I came across a deal for a Little Tikes bed. It was the twin size red race car bed. We bought my son a futon bed a few months ago but it’s just not working well. The character sheets he wants for his bed are so much more expensive for full size if you can even find them. We had a twin size a couple of years ago but my husband thought it was better to go with the full size bed we got for free from his parents. I have been kicking myself ever since for getting rid of the twin bed.
When I came across the ad I was intrigued. These beds sell well and usually for more than the asking price. I called and she was desperate to get rid of it as she needed the space in her garage. I sent my husband over with the truck and it was in pristine condition. She even gave us an almost brand new twin mattress with bunk bed box spring and a brand new set of yellow sheets. I paid $200 for the bed. It’s the red one with the bookcase headboard and a toy box at the foot of the bed. This particular style retails for $400 new. The best part is the Little Tikes bed looks almost new. There are a couple of light scuffs on the corners. An added bonus is that when it’s time to sell the bed, then we can recoup almost all of our money. We got such a great deal and still can’t believe she gave us a new mattress. We put the futon bed in our spare room to keep for company. I also got a killer deal on that one from the furniture store.
We only have full size bedding so we had to buy twin size bedding for our son. So we went to Wal-Mart yesterday and found a Speed Racer comforter for $18. I wanted the sheets but thought it was odd they weren’t marked down. Hubby scanned them and it rang up at $7! I was very excited to get the whole set for $25 and he will be able to use these for several years. I also splurged on another set of character sheets for him so we spent about $50 with tax for 2 sets of sheets and the comforter. We now have 3 sets and I still plan on using his other full size comforters for now.
When you first start a remodeling project, it seems so easy, until you start the actual planning. A couple of years ago our old kitchen sink started leaking so it needed to be replaced. We started shopping for a sink, and we also were going to have to replace the fixtures. I always wanted a garbage disposal so there is another expense. The old sink was a really old porcelain one with huge dish drains. Of course the new sink is smaller so then we were going to have to redo the formica counters. We did need new ones but it starts adding up. There are so many brands of faucets today. We looked at many brands, including Kohler faucets which is what we choose. I’m very happy with how it all came out, but now we need to repaint the whole kitchen as well as the cabinets.
We have one desktop computer right now which won’t do at all. I need the computer to do work and research, but my husband is kicking me off the minute he gets home from work. I usually can’t get back on until he goes to bed. Then our son is begging to play on the computer at some point daily. We both decided it’s time for a new computer but I want a laptop at his time. I can bring it with us, like a vacation, or to show off pictures to the family. My husband said he would use it in the living room, and I like that it’s not as bulky as a regular desktop. I’m trying so hard to be patient for the Black Friday sales, but it seems so far away.
A good life insurance policy is something every adult should consider. A good policy doesn’t have to be expensive. My husband and I both have a term policy that costs us less than $35 per month. I know a lot of moms who don’t work think this doesn’t apply to them. If you were to die when your kids are still young, then who is going to take care of them? Your husband will now either have to put them in daycare or perhaps hire a nanny. That does cost money.
So you now ask how big of a policy should I buy? Many financial experts say a good rule of thumb is 10x your annual income. Even if you don’t work then add up how much income your spouse might need with daycare costs or a house cleaner. I have a $100,000 policy.
Have you ever noticed how the weeks can drag on but the weekends are gone before you have time to enjoy them. I try to do as much of my work during the week, but there is always a project to do or somewhere to go. It always seems like I’m one who always has to visit my family if I want to see them. I just wished my weekends could last longer.
I never used to have a lot of pocket change since I hardly ever used cash. In the past year, we have used cash more than our debit card, and it really does add up. Some financial experts estimate that most people can save $40/mo from just their change. We have been saving over $50/mo the last 4 months. To get the most back is to never use change even if it’s for a few pennies. I don’t do that but I keep 4 pennies in my wallet so that way I never get them back and always nickels or bigger coins.
So what to do with all that spare change? Anything you like but here are some good tips. I am currently saving for our vacation next year. It won’t pay for much of it but mainly food and spending money. Also, you can save Christmas or gifts in general, a fun day out, eating out, or use it to help pay down debt. I know some people save theirs for something they normally wouldn’t buy, or to help pay for an upgrade like a new appliance or piece of furniture. You can also use it to help save for your kids college funds. $30-50 a month might seem like much but if you did average $40/mo that is a total of $480 a year. Not too shabby if you ask me. Those pennies really do start to add up over time.
I can keep my change in a designated jar with a slit and it’s not too easy to get into which is good so it’s less tempting to steal from it. Some people use mason style jars with a lid with a slit cut in the top, those bigger 5 gallon water jugs, soda bottles (the 2 liter kind) or anything. It’s a great way to recycle. Now some are asking what’s the easiest way to cash my change? I’m very fortunate to have a bank that doesn’t charge me a fee where I can bring my jar, and they will dump it in a counting machine. I do have to deposit it in my checking but that’s fine with me. Some people sit down and roll them. There are also those Coinstar machines but if you don’t want to get hit with fees then you have to convert it into a gift certificate. They have vendors like Amazon, Disney Shopping online, ITunes, Circuit City, JC Pennys, Borders, AMC, Old Navy, and more. This is a good option if you plan on using it for gifts or want to buy something at one of these stores.
I think if you plan on a goal and then get a jar started, it will give you more motivation to save as you see the amount growing. I think a clear container is visually the best to literally see your savings grow. This is also great to try and get the kiddos involved. I also don’t put dollar bills in mine and kept strictly as a change jar. Everyone can do their own as they want which is great. What I like to do is take out any leftover money at the end of a year from the envelopes to use for our Christmas gifts. Happy collecting!