Christmas http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/38/all en-US Best Money Tips: Things Not to Do at the Office Christmas Party http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-things-not-to-do-at-the-office-christmas-party <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-things-not-to-do-at-the-office-christmas-party" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/holiday-stk80264cor.jpg" alt="office party" title="office party" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread&#39;s <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some stellar articles on things not to do at the office Christmas party, dos and don&#39;ts of Christmas giving, and why frugality may be hard for you.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.dumblittleman.com/2013/12/12-things-not-to-do-at-office-christmas.html">12 Things Not to Do at the Office Christmas Party</a> &mdash; Don&#39;t get drunk or eat like a pig at the office Christmas party. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Christmas-Gift-Giving-Rules-20767917">10 Dos and Don&#39;ts of Christmas Gift Giving</a> &mdash; When giving gifts this Christmas, do put thought into your gifts but don&#39;t leave the price tag on. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyning.com/frugality/why-frugality-is-hard-for-you/">Why Frugality is Hard for You (and What to Do About It)</a> &mdash; Frugality may be hard for you because it may make you feel suffocated. [MoneyNing]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneyunder30.com/how-to-save-your-coins-10775">Funny Money: How to Make a Change and Save Your Coins</a> &mdash; Want to save your coins? Consider leaving them in your couch cushions until you need them. [Money Under 30]</p> <p><a href="http://www.biblemoneymatters.com/how-facebook-can-help-you-in-your-pursuit-to-live-a-frugal-lifestyle/">How Facebook Can Help You In Your Pursuit To Live A Frugal Lifestyle</a> &mdash; Facebook may be able to help you live frugally by allowing you to find like-minded people to support you in your frugal endeavors. [Bible Money Matters]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://financialhighway.com/simple-ways-you-can-save-money-during-the-holidays/">Simple Ways You Can Save Money During the Holidays</a> &mdash; To save money during the holidays, buy discounted gift cards. [Financial Highway]</p> <p><a href="http://lifehacker.com/how-can-i-avoid-using-too-much-smartphone-data-1479097074">How Can I Avoid Using Too Much Smartphone Data?</a> &mdash; Avoid using too much smartphone data by setting up access limits on each phone. [Lifehacker]</p> <p><a href="http://www.marcandangel.com/2013/12/05/9-fears-you-will-regret-never-facing/">9 Fears You Will Never Regret Facing</a> &mdash; You will never regret facing your fear of failure or change. [Marc and Angel Hack Life]</p> <p><a href="http://timemanagementninja.com/2013/12/5-times-you-need-to-say-no-to-yourself/">5 Times You Need to Say No to Yourself</a> &mdash; Remember to say no to yourself when you are stressed. [Time Management Ninja]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/give-a-giftthat-isnt-a-toy-or-electronics">Give a Gift...That Isn&#39;t a Toy or Electronics</a> &mdash; This holiday season, give an adventure or a behind the scenes tour. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-things-not-to-do-at-the-office-christmas-party" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Things Not to Do at the Office Christmas Party" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Life Hacks best money tips Christmas Office party Thu, 12 Dec 2013 09:02:21 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1099972 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: 60 Awesome DIY Stocking Stuffers http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-60-awesome-diy-stocking-stuffers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-60-awesome-diy-stocking-stuffers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/gift-100823525.jpg" alt="stocking stuffers" title="stocking stuffers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread&#39;s <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some fantastic articles on DIY stocking stuffers, the worst money mistakes you can make, and saving on holiday photo cards.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/DIY-Stocking-Stuffers-32811815">60 Awesome DIY Stocking Stuffers</a> &mdash; This holiday season, make bottle cap candles or bottle cap planters as stocking stuffers. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2013/12/the-ten-worst-money-mistakes-anyone-can-make.html">The Ten Worst Money Mistakes Anyone Can Make</a> &mdash; Don&#39;t make the money mistake of not having enough insurance or waiting to invest. [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://bargainbabe.com/tips-save-holiday-photo-cards/">Tips to Save on Holiday Photo Cards</a> &mdash; To save money on holiday photo cards, design your own cards and take your own photos. [Bargain Babe]</p> <p><a href="http://www.onesmartdollar.com/as-temperatures-drop-utility-bills-dont-have-to-rise/">As Temperatures Drop, Utility Bills Don&#39;t Have to Rise</a> &mdash; Hanging thermal curtains and keeping them closed at night can help you keep your home warm without breaking the bank. [One Smart Dollar]</p> <p><a href="http://freefrombroke.com/how-to-choose-the-right-references-for-your-job-search/">Get the Job You Want! - How to Choose the Right References for Your Job Search</a> &mdash; Choose the right references for your job search by determining which of your references can answer the tough questions. [Free From Broke]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.johnnymoneyseed.com/how-life-works/act-like-human-holidays/">How to Act Like a Human Being During the Holidays</a> &mdash; Keep your cool this holiday season by avoiding shopping during big sales and remembering that less is more when decorating your house. [Johnny Moneyseed]</p> <p><a href="http://livingonthecheap.com/gift-giving-etiquette-rules-for-the-office-this-december/">Navigating the minefield of office gift exchanges</a> &mdash; Keeping a few &quot;anybody&quot; gifts handy at work can help you avoid any awkwardness during the holiday season. [Living on the Cheap]</p> <p><a href="http://yesiamcheap.com/2013/12/get-the-most-out-of-best-buy-and-save-money/">Get the Most Out Of Best Buy and Save Money</a> &mdash; Did you know Best Buy offers a trade-in program where you can get money for your old gadgets? [Yes, I Am Cheap]</p> <p><a href="http://blog.couponsherpa.com/15-funny-white-elephant-gifts/">15 Funny White Elephant Gift Ideas</a> &mdash; Need a white elephant gift idea? Consider going with embarrassing photos or assorted chia pets. [Coupon Sherpa]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/how-to-host-a-holiday-cookie-exchange">How to Host a Holiday Cookie Exchange</a> &mdash; When hosting a holiday cookie exchange, prepare pretty packaging so your guests can take their cookies with them. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-60-awesome-diy-stocking-stuffers" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: 60 Awesome DIY Stocking Stuffers" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Frugal Living best money tips Christmas DIY stocking stocking stuffers Wed, 11 Dec 2013 10:31:21 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1099940 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: 100 Affordable Christmas Gifts for Men http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-100-affordable-christmas-gifts-for-men <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-100-affordable-christmas-gifts-for-men" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/holiday-iStock_000011352320Small.jpg" alt="man with gift" title="man with gift" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread&#39;s <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some fantastic articles on affordable gifts for men, ways to protect yourself on vacation, and saving money on holiday meals.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Cheap-Christmas-Gifts-Men-32385188">100 Affordable Christmas Gifts for Men</a> &mdash; Consider getting the man in your life a beer tasting kit or a man candle for Christmas. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://budgetandthebeach.com/2013/11/06/ways-to-protect-yourself-on-your-vacation/">Ways to Protect Yourself on your Vacation</a> &mdash; To protect yourself on your vacation, pack an outfit with you on the plane. [Budget and the Beach]</p> <p><a href="http://savingslifestyle.com/2013/11/saving-money-holiday-meals/">Saving Money on Holiday Meals</a> &mdash; When trying to save money on holiday meals, take advantage of grocery bargains. [Savings Lifestyle]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyning.com/money-news/beware-a-new-scam-scares-you-into-thinking-you-owe-taxes/">Beware: A New Scam Scares You Into Thinking You Owe Taxes</a> &mdash; If someone calls you claiming to be from the IRS and tells you that you owe taxes, do not panic. The IRS will normally conatct you through snail mail, so chances are the person calling you is part of a new scam. [MoneyNing]</p> <p><a href="http://www.consumerismcommentary.com/money-systems-food-planning/">Money Systems That Lead to Success: Food Planning</a> &mdash; If you want to save money on food, start by purchasing your groceries on a schedule so you can implement a food planning system. [Consumerism Commentary]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.biblemoneymatters.com/have-a-no-spend-challenge-to-prepare-for-the-holidays-and-give-thanks/">Have A No Spend Challenge To Prepare For The Holidays And Give Thanks</a> &mdash; Participating in a no spend challenge can give you some extra savings to use if your budget slips into the red. [Bible Money Matters]</p> <p><a href="http://www.girlsjustwannahavefunds.com/severance-package-questions/">Severance Packages: Time to Goof Off Or Make It Pay Off?</a> &mdash; Before you take a severance package, figure out if the package prevents you from working for a competitor for a specified period of time. [Girls Just Wanna Have Funds]</p> <p><a href="http://www.stretcher.com/stories/06/06nov13d.cfm?slider">Wrap Up Your Holiday For Free!</a> &mdash; Save money on wrapping paper this year by wrapping gifts in newspapers or crepe paper. [TheDollarStretcher.com]</p> <p><a href="http://sweatingthebigstuff.com/shopping-cheap-accessories-online/">Shopping for Cheap Accessories Online</a> &mdash; When shopping for shoes online, be willing to pay a little extra so that they look good and feel comfortable. [Sweating the Big Stuff]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/5-great-holiday-fundraisers-for-your-school">5 Great Holiday Fundraisers for Your School</a> &mdash; If you are trying to put together a fundraiser for your school, consider doing a gift basket raffle! [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-100-affordable-christmas-gifts-for-men" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: 100 Affordable Christmas Gifts for Men" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Shopping affordable best money tips Christmas gifts men Wed, 13 Nov 2013 10:00:03 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1096005 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Ways to Score Free Stocking Stuffers http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-score-free-stocking-stuffers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-ways-to-score-free-stocking-stuffers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/holiday-93339528.jpg" alt="stocking stuffers" title="stocking stuffers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread&#39;s <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some awesome articles on scoring free stocking stuffers, what your sleeping position says about your relationship with money, and digging your way out of debt.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.moneytalksnews.com/2013/11/05/12-ways-to-score-free-stocking-stuffers/">12 Ways to Score Free Stocking Stuffers</a> &mdash; Find samples and check your credit card rewards to score free stocking stuffers. [Money Talks News]</p> <p><a href="http://www.creditsesame.com/blog/what-your-sleep-position-says-about-your-relationship-with-money/">What Your Sleeping Position Says About Your Relationship With Money</a> &mdash; People who sleep on their side tend to earn more money than people who sleep in other positions. [Credit Sesame]</p> <p><a href="http://wealthyturtle.com/digging-yourself-out-of-debt/">Digging Yourself Out of Debt</a> &mdash; To dig yourself out of debt, look into credit counseling. [Wealthy Turtle]</p> <p><a href="http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/what-you-need-to-know-for-401k-open-enrollment.html">401(k) open enrollment season at work? 3 things you need to know</a> &mdash; Before you enroll in your company&#39;s 401(k) plan, figure out how long it will take until you are vested. [Bargaineering]</p> <p><a href="http://canadianfinanceblog.com/use-your-raise-to-increase-your-savings/">Use Your Raise To Increase Your Savings</a> &mdash; Anytime you receive a raise, devote part of it to increasing your savings. [Canadian Finance Blog]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.moneycrashers.com/cognitive-behavioral-therapy-prevent-poor-financial-choices/">How Cognitive Behavioral Therpapy Can Prevent Poor Financial Choices</a> &mdash; Irrational negative beliefs may cause you to make poor financial choices, so try cognitive behavioral therapy to help you identify between rational and irrational beliefs. [Money Crashers]</p> <p><a href="http://kiplinger.com/article/insurance/T027-C001-S002-strategies-for-your-health-savings-account.html">Strategies for Your Health Savings Account</a> &mdash; Did you know health savings accounts provide a triple tax break? [Kiplinger]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Affordable-Oprah-Favorite-Things-2013-32357543">16 of Oprah&#39;s FavoriteThings Under $50</a> &mdash; Modern House Red Wine and sweater coozies are just a couple affordable items on Oprah&#39;s favorite things list this year.[PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.carefulcents.com/prepare-for-the-unexpected/">How to Survive When the Freelancing Life Throws You Curveballs</a> &mdash; When thrown curveballs as a freelancer, stay afloat by staying a few weeks ahead. [Careful Cents]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/winter-baby-showers-that-sparkle-and-shine">Winter Baby Showers That Sparkle and Shine</a> &mdash; Throwing a baby shower this winter? Consider an Ice Princess or Prince theme! [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-score-free-stocking-stuffers" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Ways to Score Free Stocking Stuffers" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Frugal Living best money tips Christmas free stocking stuffers Mon, 11 Nov 2013 09:48:04 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1081945 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Alternatives to Christmas Gifts http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-alternatives-to-christmas-gifts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-alternatives-to-christmas-gifts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/holiday-4823849-small.jpg" alt="couple and Christmas tree" title="couple and Christmas tree" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some awesome articles on alternatives to Christmas gifts, scoring a bigger apartment without moving, and getting discounted gift cards.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://bargainbabe.com/alternatives-to-christmas-gifts/">10 Alternatives to Christmas Gifts</a> &mdash; Instead of giving Christmas gifts this year, opt to give coupons for chores or tasks! [Bargain Babe]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/How-Make-Your-Apartment-Look-Bigger-31875750">How to Score a Bigger Apartment - Without Moving</a> &mdash; Purchasing mirrors and avoiding large furniture can make your apartment feel bigger without you having to move. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://livingonthecheap.com/5-ways-get-discounted-gift-cards/">5 ways to get discounted gift cards</a> &mdash; Did you know you can get discounted gift cards by using auction sites? [Living On The Cheap]</p> <p><a href="http://www.carefulcents.com/not-approved-for-life-insurance/">What to Do When You're Not Approved for Life Insurance</a> &mdash; If you don't get approved for life insurance and aren't given a reason why, make sure you filled out your application correctly. [Careful Cents]</p> <p><a href="http://www.stretcher.com/stories/11/11sep26e.cfm?slider#.UkBjyXB6Bi4">Value Add</a> &mdash; Get more from the stores you shop at by taking advantage of their services and discounts. [TheDollarStretcher.com]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://moneysmartlife.com/big-money-mistakes-how-you-can-avoid-them/">My 3 Biggest Money Mistakes and How You Can Avoid Them</a> &mdash; To avoid making the money mistake of piling on debt in college, track your spending. [Money Smart Life]</p> <p><a href="http://cashmoneylife.com/when-splurging-is-good/">Could a Splurge Be a Positive Thing?</a> &mdash; A splurge can be a good thing if you plan ahead for it. [Cash Money Life]</p> <p><a href="http://genxfinance.com/how-to-sell-your-car-for-the-most-money/">How to Sell Your Car For the Most Money</a> &mdash; Make minor repairs on your car before you try to sell it. You will get more money for it that way. [Generation X Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.goodfinancialcents.com/how-to-become-a-financial-planner/">The How To Guide for Becoming a Financial Planner</a> &mdash; If you are trying to become a financial planner, it's important to take every experience and build. [Good Financial Cents]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/how-to-plan-a-twins-baby-shower">How to Plan a Twins Baby Shower</a> &mdash; When planning a twins baby shower, consider making the theme Thing One and Thing Two or two peas in a pod. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-alternatives-to-christmas-gifts" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Alternatives to Christmas Gifts" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Frugal Living alternatives best money tips Christmas gifts Tue, 24 Sep 2013 09:48:06 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 989596 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Last-Minute Gifts You Can Buy at the Grocery Store http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-last-minute-gifts-you-can-buy-at-the-grocery-store <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-last-minute-gifts-you-can-buy-at-the-grocery-store" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/4446402004_207a5c7043_z.jpg" alt="Last-Minute Gifts You Can Buy At The Grocery Store" title="Last-Minute Gifts You Can Buy At The Grocery Store" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on last minute gifts you can buy at the grocery store, stuffing an epic stocking, and what to do with a holiday bonus.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Gifts-You-Can-Buy-Grocery-Store-26321070">Last-Minute Gifts You Can Buy At The Grocery Store</a> &mdash; Still haven't finished your holiday shopping? Head to the grocery store and pick up some wine! [SavvySugar]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneytalksnews.com/2012/12/18/121-ways-to-stuff-an-epic-stocking/">120 Ideas to Stuff an Epic Stocking</a> &mdash; To stuff an epic stocking, make it personal and realize less is more. [Money Talks News]</p> <p><a href="http://www.creditsesame.com/blog/you-got-a-holiday-bonus-now-what/">You Got a Holiday Bonus-Now What?</a> &mdash; If you got a holiday bonus, use it to build an emergency fund. [Credit Sesame]</p> <p><a href="http://www.kiplinger.com/columns/ask/archive/your-year-end-financial-to-do-list.html?si=1">Your Year-End Financial To-Do List</a> &mdash; As 2012 draws to a close, remember to clean out your flexible spending account. [Kiplinger]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/2012/12/21/selective-memory-and-your-wallet/?utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+thesimpledollar+%28The+Simple+Dollar%29">Selective Memory and Your Wallet</a> &mdash; Make sure selective memory doesn't negatively impact your wallet by keeping a money diary. [The Simple Dollar]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://money.msn.com/frugal-living/post.aspx?post=6aa7cbe0-4362-487b-92c4-8bc219afa112&amp;ref=bfv">3 money-saving auto tips you've never heard</a> &mdash; Save money on your car by replacing your oxygen sensors before they wear out. [MSN Money]</p> <p><a href="http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/6-ways-increase-tips-waiter-waitress-server.html">6 Ways to Increase Your Tips as a Waiter, Waitress or Server</a> &mdash; To increase your tips if you are a waiter, waitress, or server, squat down to be at or below eye level with your customers. [Bargaineering]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2012/12/most-soon-to-be-retirees-dont-have-enough-saved.html">Most Soon-to-Be Retirees Don't Have Enough Saved</a> &mdash; Did you know the median retirement savings for households near retirement is only $120,000? [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneycrashers.com/divorce-costs-types/">How Much Does a Divorce Cost? - Types &amp; Ways to Save</a> &mdash; If you are getting a divorce, save money on it by opting for a flat-fee divorce. [Money Crashers]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/6-holiday-safety-hazards-how-to-keep-safe-this-season">6 Holiday Safety Hazards: How to Keep Kids Safe This Season</a> &mdash; Keep small items out of the reach of young children to prevent choking hazards this holiday season. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-last-minute-gifts-you-can-buy-at-the-grocery-store" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Last-Minute Gifts You Can Buy at the Grocery Store" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Shopping best money tips Christmas gifts grocery store Mon, 24 Dec 2012 11:00:30 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 961179 at http://www.wisebread.com Shoppers to Spend Less This Holiday Season http://www.wisebread.com/shoppers-to-spend-less-this-holiday-season <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/shoppers-to-spend-less-this-holiday-season" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/gift-box-iStock_000022323419Small.jpg" alt="gift box" title="gift box" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>One of my favorite holiday songs is &ldquo;It&rsquo;s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.&rdquo; But I&rsquo;ll admit that during some points of the season, I feel like changing the words to &ldquo;It&rsquo;s the Most <em>Stressful</em> Time of the Year.&rdquo;</p> <p>And it&rsquo;s not just because you have to attend company parties, find time to decorate the house, or compliment your Aunt Sara&rsquo;s cranberry nut dessert (even though you can&rsquo;t stand it). No, there&rsquo;s something else that can really make your blood pressure rise.</p> <p>You know what I&rsquo;m talking about &mdash; it&rsquo;s the heart palpitations that accompany spending so much money in a short period of time. Way too many people end up with a debt hangover in January. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dealing-with-post-holiday-credit-card-debt">Dealing With&nbsp;Post-Holiday Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <p>But it looks like this is the year that many have decided to throw up their hands and say,&nbsp;<em>Enough already! We can spend less and still enjoy the holidays.</em> According to a <a href="http://investors.fairisaac.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=67528&amp;p=RssLanding&amp;cat=news&amp;id=1764236">survey by myFICO</a>, almost one third of consumers are decreasing their holiday budgets and keeping low balances on their credit cards.</p> <p>The myFICO survey highlights some credit-card strategies that consumers are trying this holiday season. Maybe you&rsquo;ll see an idea that will help you put the brakes on credit-card spending this season.</p> <h2>Sticking With Their Current Credit Cards</h2> <p>Only 20% of shoppers plan to open a new credit card account. Now, this doesn&rsquo;t necessarily mean that consumers have enough credit. I suspect this has to do with not wanting the temptation to spend more.</p> <p>And this makes sense. If you&rsquo;re on a diet and you don&rsquo;t want to eat a giant plate of lasagna, then don&rsquo;t go to an Italian restaurant where you&rsquo;ll be tempted to order it.</p> <p>Same with credit cards. Don&rsquo;t tempt yourself with a new card if you know you&rsquo;ll be tempted to spend more. Really, unless you need a specific type of card, like a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">rewards card that offers miles</a>, there&rsquo;s no reason to open a new account.</p> <p>But I also think that people are sticking with the credit cards they have because it&rsquo;s easy. You know the interest rate, your credit limit, and how the rewards program works. If you put a brand-new card into your rotation right now, it&rsquo;s just more stuff to keep track of. And when you have more stuff to keep track of, it&rsquo;s stressful. And during the holidays, who needs more stress?</p> <h2>Spending Less on Credit Cards</h2> <p>I already mentioned that almost a third of consumers say they&rsquo;re spending less this year. But would you believe that a whopping 65% plan to spend less than $500 on their credit cards? That&rsquo;s pretty significant, because the American Research Group predicted that the average consumer will spend $854 during the 2012 season.</p> <p>I haven&rsquo;t done any scientific research on this, but I spend a lot of my time talking with consumers. I think one reason so many folks are cutting back is because we&rsquo;re all becoming more skeptical about what the economy has in store. The Great Recession spooked everyone, whether you got your credit trashed or not during that time.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s nothing wrong with some healthy skepticism. We no longer believe that the economy will bounce back strong until we see it. This is just self-preservation, and it&rsquo;s really pretty healthy. When the economy does bounce back, those who aren&rsquo;t in debt can take advantage of opportunities. So really, it&rsquo;s fantastic to see people <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-my-hoarder-family-saved-christmas">making tough decisions about spending less</a>.</p> <h2>Watching the Score</h2> <p>In the survey, 14% said they&rsquo;re worried about the impact of holiday spending on their FICO score. I think this is another effect of the recession. Three years ago, not that many people spent time thinking about their FICO score.</p> <p>The survey also says that consumers plan to use only 25% of their limit. This is a good strategy because the lower your credit card balances, the better your FICO score. In fact, if you want to maximize this part of your FICO score, don&rsquo;t use more than 10% of your credit card limit. Yes, I know that&rsquo;s hard to pull off during the holidays!</p> <p>But honestly, I don&rsquo;t think anyone needs to actually &ldquo;worry&rdquo; about their scores. Be concerned, but don&rsquo;t obsess over it, because scores are a moving target. They change frequently based on what&rsquo;s being reported and when it&rsquo;s being reported. As long as you pay the full balance when the bill comes, the impact on your score will be temporary.</p> <p>However, if you&rsquo;re planning to refinance your mortgage or get a personal loan very soon, then yes, it&rsquo;s a good idea to keep those balances very low.</p> <h2>Are You Spending Less This Year?</h2> <p>I&rsquo;m a little ahead of the curve on this issue. I cut back on the amount of holiday spending a few years ago. Not because I&rsquo;m a financial genius, but because I have a daughter in college and my son is starting college in two years. My goodness, education is expensive!</p> <p>So we&rsquo;ve already made a tough decision about holiday spending cuts. I do <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-to-use-your-credit-card-for-holiday-purchases">use my rewards credit cards for all of my holiday purchases</a>. I like to get cash back or miles on my purchases. It&rsquo;s a small way to save a little on the purchase price.</p> <p><em>OK, so how about you? Have you decided to make any changes when it comes to spending or credit cards this year?</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shoppers-to-spend-less-this-holiday-season" class="sharethis-link" title="Shoppers to Spend Less This Holiday Season" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beverly-harzog">Beverly Harzog</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Shopping Christmas credit card spending holiday shopping Mon, 17 Dec 2012 11:36:31 +0000 Beverly Harzog 959887 at http://www.wisebread.com 30 Easy Holiday Crafts for Kids http://www.wisebread.com/30-easy-holiday-crafts-for-kids <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/30-easy-holiday-crafts-for-kids" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/74506150_9984c27ff4_z.jpg" alt="Kids doing crafts" title="Kids doing crafts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="173" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Somehow, the dropping temperatures and smell of turkey makes children want to do nothing but make crafts. Below, check out holiday craft ideas from holiday-specific (Christmas, Hanukkah) to holiday-general (mainly snowmen), all arranged by craft supply. Keep in mind that supervision is required for some of them, but most they can do on their own while you&rsquo;re cooking some tastiness for the table.&nbsp;(See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-fun-family-friendly-games-for-your-holiday-party">5 Fun&nbsp;Family&nbsp;Friendly Games for Your Holiday Party</a>)</p> <h2>Pasta</h2> <p>Ahh, pasta &mdash; the quintessential child craft supply. The options are endless, but here are a few you can try.</p> <p><strong>1. Pasta Menorah</strong></p> <p>Using paper, glue, lentils, and macaroni, your kids can make this simple and cute <a href="http://kidscraftweekly.com/hanukkah_crafts.html">pasta menorah</a>. As the blog suggests, some supervision might be required for younger kids (after all, they might try to eat the dried pasta).</p> <p><strong>2. Ornaments</strong></p> <p>Using round pasta, there are plenty of options for trees, stars, and other <a href="http://anastasiapollack.blogspot.com/2011/12/crafts-with-anastasia-pasta-ornaments.html">pasta ornaments</a>. Use paint if you&rsquo;d like, or just keep them pasta-colored.</p> <p><strong>3. Pasta Tree</strong></p> <p>This <a href="http://www.bhg.com/crafts/easy/1-hour-projects/pretty-pasta-tree/">pasta tree from Better Homes and Gardens</a> is one of the more complex crafts, but supposedly it&rsquo;s under $10 and takes about an hour. I personally think it looks the most fun.</p> <h2>Egg Cartons</h2> <p>It's likely you&rsquo;ll have a lot of empty egg cartons lying around while cooking the many cakes, cookies, and casseroles associated with the holidays, so put them to good use with these fun crafts.</p> <p><strong>4. Christmas Tree</strong></p> <p>To make a Christmas tree, take two egg cartons and glue them to a piece of cardboard in the shape of a tree. Use green spray paint (or just regular craft paint), decorate, and voila! For a slightly more complicated egg-carton stand-up tree, try <a href="http://shaktidove.blogspot.com/2011/11/diy-egg-carton-christmas-tree.html">this tree craft</a> out.</p> <p><strong>5. Menorah</strong></p> <p>Use an empty egg carton turned upside down and popsicle sticks to create this <a href="http://www.nickjr.com/crafts/kids-menorah-craft.jhtml">egg-carton menorah</a> from Nick, Jr.</p> <h2>Pipe Cleaners</h2> <p>This classic craft supply can be bent into lots of fun holiday items.</p> <p><strong>6. Beaded Ornaments</strong></p> <p>This is a craft I did a lot as a kid &mdash; stringing beads into shapes to make <a href="http://www.makeandtakes.com/bead-your-own-ornaments">different ornaments</a>.</p> <p><strong>7. Snowmen or Reindeer Figurines</strong></p> <p>Your kids can also attempt slightly harder shapes, like <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/266463/making-figures-snowman">a skating snowman</a> or a <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/267805/making-figures-reindeer">stand-up reindeer</a>.</p> <p><strong>8. Menorah</strong></p> <p>Joyful Jewish came up with an inventive (and adorable) way to make a <a href="http://joyfuljewish.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/front-door-chanukiah/">menorah out of pipe cleaners</a> (also pictured is the star of David). All that is needed for this one is pipe cleaners and a little elbow grease. She also uses gold pipe cleaners to &ldquo;light&rdquo; one each night.</p> <h2>Fabric and Paper</h2> <p>...including one of the most classic kids' craft supplies &mdash; toilet paper rolls.</p> <p><b>9. Snowman</b></p> <p>You can use equal parts shaving cream and Elmer&rsquo;s glue to make <a href="http://www.oopseydaisyblog.com/2010/12/book-advent-day-9-snowmen-at-christmas.html">a puffy snowman</a> on a piece of paper or canvas.</p> <p><strong>10. Aprons</strong></p> <p>Make a <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/275712/kids-christmas-crafts/@center/307034/christmas-workshop">no-sew holiday apron</a> with the kids! Buy a blank apron in their size along with some felt, ribbons, and other fabrics, and have them design their aprons however they&rsquo;d like. That way if they do end up helping in the kitchen, they&rsquo;ll at least try to keep their clothes clean.</p> <p><strong>11. Toilet Paper Roll Figurines</strong></p> <p>There are no real instructions, per se (the idea comes from one of those Pinterest pins with no actual link), but the <a href="http://media-cache-ec6.pinterest.com/upload/183029172325631775_ETWg1mxU_c.jpg">picture of the figurines</a> is a good start. Use paint, paper, and glue (or anything else) to decorate old toilet paper rolls or paper towel rolls.</p> <p><strong>12. Paper Dreidels</strong></p> <p>Enchanted Learning provides a <a href="http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/hanukkah/dreidel/template.shtml">printable dreidel</a> to make this. With the addition of scissors, glue, crayons, and a small dowel or straw, your child can make this craft. Grab some game pieces and play, play, play.</p> <p><strong>13. Star of David</strong></p> <p>All you need is white paper, scissors, and glue, and you and your child can make some <a href="http://www.dltk-kids.com/world/jewish/measystar.htm">Stars of David</a>. You can use them to decorate the wall, or, as the link suggests, put them together with paper towel rolls to make a mobile.</p> <h2>Glass</h2> <p>Although these two crafts are very safe, make sure to supervise children when they're working with glass.</p> <p><strong>14. Light Bulb Snowman</strong></p> <p>Start with <a href="http://shop.hobbylobby.com/products/4-1/4-glass-light-bulb-jar-with-gold-lid-853721/">a light bulb meant for crafting</a> (real light bulbs won&rsquo;t screw off just right and could burst into pieces in your hand). Use marshmallows or cotton balls for the inside, and use a black permanent marker, stickers, googly eyes or whatever you&rsquo;d like to complete the outside. You can use black felt to make the hat and a small amount of ribbon to make the scarf. Add some string to the top, and it also makes a great ornament!</p> <p><strong>15. Food Jar or Mason Jar Snow Globes</strong></p> <p>Here&rsquo;s the cheapest option &mdash; start saving jars leftover from jam, olives, or mayo (especially since so much cooking is going on). After properly cleaning a jar, buy some glitter, figurines (try the Dollar Tree), and other bits and bobs to fill your jar with. Now, you can go at this two different ways: Martha Stewart suggests how to make your <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/273254/snow-globes">snow globe with water</a>, while the Salt Tree offers <a href="http://www.salttree.net/2011/11/miniatures-in-jar.html">a waterless alternative</a>. Take a look at each and decide which you like more (and/or which is easier to make with the kids).</p> <h2>Buttons</h2> <p>I&rsquo;ve told you about <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-reuse-buttons">lots of ways to use buttons</a> in the past, but there are plenty of other options.</p> <p><strong>16. Christmas Tree</strong></p> <p>Use thick paper (or canvas if you have it), glue, and all the green buttons you can summon to make this <a href="http://www.meetthedubiens.com/2011/12/button-christmas-tree.html">Christmas tree</a>. Perfect decoration for the wall!</p> <p><strong>17. Snowflake</strong></p> <p>This <a href="http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/2009/11/ashleys-snowflake-ornament.html">snowflake ornament</a> (or wall decoration) requires a wire coat hanger, a glue gun, and white buttons. There is no need to try and wire the buttons through the coat hanger, just glue them on and go. Of course, be careful that nothing is burned or poked out.</p> <p><strong>18. Ornaments</strong></p> <p>Martha Stewart serves up a number of <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/270662/button-ornaments">different types of ornaments</a> made out of pipe cleaners and buttons.</p> <h2>Candy</h2> <p>Your kids will hop right on these crafts (if you can keep them from eating as they go).</p> <p><strong>19. Chocolate Dreidels</strong></p> <p>With chocolate kisses, chocolate sprinkles, marshmallows, and pretzel sticks, you can make <a href="http://nicholeheady.typepad.com/capture_the_moment/2008/09/introducing-maz.html">chocolate dreidels</a>. They won&rsquo;t quite work to play with, but they&rsquo;ll be delicious.</p> <p><strong>20. Gumdrop Pops</strong></p> <p>Using assorted gumdrops and a rounded-off toothpick (only if these are going to be used as decoration and not made by small children &mdash; otherwise use a candy stick as suggested), you can make <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/273470/gumdrop-pops">any sort of Christmas creation</a>. If you&rsquo;re not planning on consuming them, Martha suggests to put them in a jar of sugar for table decoration.</p> <p><strong>21. Mint Wreaths</strong></p> <p>Better Homes and Gardens provides some fun ideas to do with candy canes, including these <a href="http://www.bhg.com/christmas/indoor-decorating/christmas-candy-decorations/#page=9">mint wreaths</a>, which require a hot glue gun.</p> <p><strong>22. Snack Cake Penguins</strong></p> <p>These <a href="http://www.hungryhappenings.com/2012/07/snack-cake-penguins-great-treat-to.html">snack cake penguins</a> are adorable and delicious at all once. OK, the base of this particular craft isn&rsquo;t candy, it&rsquo;s Swiss cake rolls, but the other ingredients are candy.</p> <h2>Gingerbread</h2> <p>The (delicious) holiday staple.</p> <p><strong>23. Men</strong></p> <p>My mother, a third grade teacher, has been baking gingerbread men every year since I can remember for her class. They&rsquo;re <a href="http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/9761/gingerbread+men">not the edible kind</a>, but the kind that gets really, really hard so you can decorate them with some paint and hang them on the tree every year until someone (me) accidentally breaks them. You can also go for a more edible recipe and <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/272371/gingerbread-reindeer">make cute reindeer</a>.</p> <p><strong>24. Houses</strong></p> <p>The houses require more frosting, gumdrops, and graham crackers, and surprisingly &mdash; less gingerbread. Unless, of course, you want to <a href="http://www.wilton.com/celebrations/Christmas/gingerbread.cfm">go all out</a>. The internet provides some good <a href="http://homecooking.about.com/od/cookierecipes/r/blcookie111.htm">gingerbread house recipes</a>, including one for a <a href="http://www.mommyblogexpert.com/2011/11/hanukkah-gingerbread-house-jewish.html">Hanukkah gingerbread house</a>. Get some supplies and see what happens. If anything, it&rsquo;ll be delicious.</p> <h2>Ball Ornaments</h2> <p>The most common ornament can also be the most fun to decorate. They&rsquo;re also everywhere, so finding the blank ornaments doesn&rsquo;t require a special trip (although I&rsquo;d advise to get these and most other supplies at the Dollar Tree). Here are some ideas to spruce them up just a little.</p> <p><strong>25. Reindeer Thumbprint</strong></p> <p>This <a href="http://www.youplusdallas.com/cityblog/style/2011/12/diy-reindeer-thumbprint-ornaments/">reindeer thumbprint ornament</a> is easy: take some brown paint, put it on your thumb, stamp it on the bulb, let it dry, and decorate. No muss, no fuss (as long as you quickly and properly clean that initial paint off your children&rsquo;s fingers).</p> <p><strong>26. Snowman</strong></p> <p>Fill a clear <a href="http://www.craftelf.com/Christmas-ornament-Glass-Ball-Snowman.htm">ball ornament</a> with fake snow, screw on the top, and decorate. To try and keep it shatter proof, make sure you have the kids put it right back in the same carton.</p> <p><strong>27. Ornament Ball Tree</strong></p> <p>Big surprise, I really like <a href="http://starterhometodreamhome.blogspot.com/2009/11/possibilities-of-ornament-balls.html">this tiny tree craft</a>. Use a Styrofoam cone from a craft store, hot glue, and ornaments to decorate. While the first part of this craft might not be totally for the kids, you could always have them decorate the tree with paint afterward.</p> <h2>Pinecones and Acorns</h2> <p>Here are some fun ideas for the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-pretty-projects-for-pine-cones">pinecones</a> and acorns you might have in your backyard.</p> <p><strong>28. Pinecone Snowmen</strong></p> <p>These <a href="http://www.thatartistwoman.org/2009/12/how-to-make-pinecone-skier.html">pinecone snowmen</a> combines a previously-mentioned craft supply (pipe cleaners), popsicle sticks, a pom pom, googly eyes, and, well, pine cones. Grab some tacky glue or a glue gun and slap the whole thing together.</p> <p><strong>29. Pinecone Trees</strong></p> <p>My friends and I recently set forth on the mission to make <a href="http://www.sugarandcharmblog.com/2011/12/pinecone-tree.html">a pinecone tree</a> we saw on Pinterest. What we weren&rsquo;t prepared for was that it takes a LOT of pinecones to properly cover the trees. However, with a little patience and a ton of hot glue, you really can pull it off. With supervision, this can be a good way for kids to learn how to fit pieces together better than Lego castles ever taught them.</p> <p><strong>30. Acorn Dreidels</strong></p> <p>To make <a href="http://www.matzosoup.com/2010/11/how-to-a-dreidel-from-an-acorn.html">acorn dreidels</a>, use acorn shells, modeling clay (any color), and matches. Roll the modeling clay into a ball, put it in the acorn shell and put a match in (tip down) and spin away.</p> <p><em>What is your favorite holiday craft to do with the kids?</em></p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-easy-holiday-crafts-for-kids" class="sharethis-link" title="30 Easy Holiday Crafts for Kids" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jennifer-holder">Jennifer Holder</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> DIY Family chanukkah Christmas crafts crafts with kids Thu, 13 Dec 2012 10:48:55 +0000 Jennifer Holder 958198 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: 97 Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-97-christmas-stocking-stuffer-ideas <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-97-christmas-stocking-stuffer-ideas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/6590166965_3ca8b587c0_z.jpg" alt="97 Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas" title="97 Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some steallar articles on 97 Christmas stocking stuffer ideas, things not worth the money, and ways to find out if you are financially compatible.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/christmas-stocking-stuffer-ideas-for-young-children">97 Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas for Young Children</a> &mdash; CDs, giant candy bars, and temporary tattoos are great stocking stuffers for young kids. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Things-Worth-Money-3643170">11 Things Not Worth The Money</a> &mdash; First class tickets on domestic flights are not worth the money. [SavvySugar]</p> <p><a href="http://www.girlsjustwannahavefunds.com/financially-compatible/">Are You Financially Compatible Or Headed For Disaster? 3 Ways To Find Out</a> &mdash; When determining whether or not you and your significant other are financially compatible, you have to look at whether or not you share the same goals. [Girls Just Wanna Have Funds]</p> <p><a href="http://timemanagementninja.com/2012/12/10-big-goals-to-kickstart-your-life/">10 Big Goals to Kickstart Your Life</a> &mdash; If you need a big goal to kickstart your life, make getting out of debt or starting a business a goal of yours! [Time Management Ninja]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/2012/12/11/twelve-gifts-that-encourage-frugality/">Twelve Gifts That Encourage Frugality</a> &mdash; Are you looking for a gift that encourages frugality? Consider giving a filtered water bottle or a decent coffee maker. [The Simple Dollar]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2012/12/how-millionaires-became-wealthy.html">How Millionaires Became Wealthy</a> &mdash; Did you know that 96% of professionals attribute their success to education? [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://bargainbabe.com/2011/12/06/your-q-white-elephant-gifts-under-10/">Your Q: White elephant gifts under $10?</a> &mdash; If you need a cheap white elephant gift, try a can of spam or $10 worth of toilet paper. [Bargain Babe]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thedigeratilife.com/blog/get-low-cost-life-insurance/">Paying For Life Insurance: How Policies Are Priced</a> &mdash; One of the ways life insurance is priced is by the low load approach that's direct to consumers. [The Digerati Life]</p> <p><a href="http://www.narrowbridge.net/5-best-mobile-apps-to-save-you-money/">5 Best Mobile Apps to Save You Money</a> &mdash; Have you ever used ZipList or GasBuddy? If not, check them out because they can help you save money![Narrow Bridge Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.20sfinances.com/2012/12/09/what-to-do-when-life-gets-busy/">What to Do When Life Gets Busy</a> &mdash; When life gets busy, kick into high gear and tell yourself you can handle it. [20's Finances]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-97-christmas-stocking-stuffer-ideas" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: 97 Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Frugal Living best money tips Christmas gifts Holidays stocking stuffers Wed, 12 Dec 2012 10:48:37 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 959793 at http://www.wisebread.com Ask Readers: What Gift Do You Want Most This Holiday Season? http://www.wisebread.com/ask-readers-what-gift-do-you-want-most-this-holiday-season <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/ask-readers-what-gift-do-you-want-most-this-holiday-season" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/5943801697_88be2fbd2a_z.jpg" alt="What Gift Do You Want Most This Holiday Season?" title="What Gift Do You Want Most This Holiday Season?" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>Editors Note: Congratulations to </em><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-readers-what-gift-do-you-want-most-this-holiday-season#comment-574549"><em>Lani C</em></a><em>, Kelli, and Kris for winning this week's contest!</em></p> <p>The holiday season is upon us! Chances are you've thought about what gifts you'd love to receive during the holidays. Whether your wish list is made up of fun splurges or more practical items, there is probably one item on your list that you want more than all the others!</p> <p><b>What gift do you want the most this holiday season? </b>The new iPad Mini? A gift certificate to your favorite restaurant? A day at the spa? A membership to a wholesale warehouse? Or something more practical like a gift card to your favorite supermarket?</p> <p>Tell us what gift you want the most this holiday season and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</p> <h2>Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards</h2> <p>We're doing three giveaways &mdash; here's how you can win!</p> <h3>Mandatory Entry:&nbsp;</h3> <ul> <li>Post your answer in the comments below. One commenter will win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</li> </ul> <h3>For extra entries:</h3> <ul> <li>You can tweet about our giveaway for an extra entry. Also, our Facebook fans can get an extra entry too! Use our Rafflecopter widget for your chance to win one of the other two Amazon Gift Cards:</li> <a id="rc-79857d9" class="rafl" rel="nofollow" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/79857d9/">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a> <script src="//d12vno17mo87cx.cloudfront.net/embed/rafl/cptr.js"></script> <p><strong>If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.</strong></p> <h4>Giveaway Rules:</h4> <ul> <li>Contest ends Monday, December 17th at 11:59 pm Pacific. Winners will be announced after December 17th on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.</li> <li>You can enter all three drawings &mdash; once by leaving a comment, once by liking our Facebook update, and once by tweeting.</li> <li>This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook.</li> <li>You must be 18 and US resident to enter. Void where prohibited.</li> </ul> </ul> <p>Also, don't miss our <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/bestdeals/today">Best Deals</a> giveaway! Every Sunday for the next five weeks, we will be giving away a $50 Amazon gift card, two copies of our book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/160239704X/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=160239704X&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=dealswb-20">10,001 Ways to Live Large on a Small Budget</a>, and a Wise Bread tote! We will also be giving away a $100 Amazon gift card to one lucky winner who fills out our Best Deals survey. For details, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/win-over-350-in-prizes-in-our-best-deals-holiday-giveaway">click here</a>!</p> <p><strong>Good Luck!</strong></p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-readers-what-gift-do-you-want-most-this-holiday-season" class="sharethis-link" title="Ask Readers: What Gift Do You Want Most This Holiday Season?" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tell us what gift you want the most this holiday season and we&#039;ll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card! </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Announcements Ask the Readers Christmas gift Holidays Tue, 11 Dec 2012 11:36:32 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 959731 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Frugal Christmas Gifting Strategies http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-frugal-christmas-gifting-strategies <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-frugal-christmas-gifting-strategies" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/4115122416_ed1c706daa_z.jpg" alt="Frugal Christmas Gifting Strategies" title="Frugal Christmas Gifting Strategies" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on frugal Christmas gifting strategies, designing a lucky life, and gifts for job hunters.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://christianpf.com/how-to-create-a-fantastic-yet-frugal-christmas-gifting-strategy/">How to Create a Fantastic Yet Frugal Christmas Gifting Strategy</a> &mdash; The first step in creating a fantastic but frugal Christmas gifting strategy is to set a budget. [Christian PF]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/2012/12/04/designing-a-lucky-life/">Designing a Lucky Life</a> &mdash; Increase the luckiness in your life by having the confidence of knowing you can do something that is challenging. [The Simple Dollar]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Gifts-Job-Hunters-12442549">8 Gifts Job Hunters Would Love</a> &mdash; Get the job hunter in your life a LinkedIn upgrade. [SavvySugar]</p> <p><a href="http://www.consumerismcommentary.com/life-is-short/">Life is Short: Toxic Financial Attitudes</a> &mdash; Did you know it's possible to save too much money? [Consumerism Commentary]</p> <p><a href="http://www.greenpandatreehouse.com/2012/11/how-to-avoid-student-loans-altogether/">How-to Avoid Student Loans Altogether!</a> &mdash; If you want to avoid student loans completely, enroll in a program with work terms. [Green Panda Treehouse]</p> <h2>Other Esssential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://beingfrugal.net/tips-to-pay-less-money-when-making-big-purchases/">4 Tips to Pay Less Money When Making Big Purchases</a> &mdash; To pay less money when making big purchases, save up for a sizable down payment. [BeingFrugal.net]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2012/12/how-do-you-stack-up-compared-to-millionaires.html">How Do you Stack Up Compared to Millionaires?</a> &mdash; Did you know the typical millionaire is 57 years old? [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://www.financialwoman.com/3-simple-steps-for-wealth-building-you-may-be-overlooking?utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+FinancialWoman+%28Financial+Woman%29">3 Simple Steps for Wealth Building You May Be Overlooking</a> &mdash; If you are having trouble with wealth building, you may be overlooking the need to get higher returns from your money. [Financial Woman]</p> <p><a href="http://www.marcandangel.com/2012/12/03/20-good-habits-to-start-in-your-20s/">20 Good Habits to Start in Your 20s</a> &mdash; In your 20s, start the habit of seeking less approval from others. [Marc and Angel Hack Life]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/parenting-squad-holiday-guide-2012-jolly-party-foods-children-can-help-make-and-will-love-to-eat">Parenting Squad Holiday Guide 2012: Jolly Party Foods Children Can Help Make (and Will Love to Eat)</a> &mdash; This holiday season, have your children help you make mini sandwiches. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-frugal-christmas-gifting-strategies" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Frugal Christmas Gifting Strategies" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Frugal Living best money tips Christmas gift Wed, 05 Dec 2012 11:00:31 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 959633 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Tips for Cutting Back This Christmas http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-tips-for-cutting-back-this-christmas <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-tips-for-cutting-back-this-christmas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/3109416942_9a86e92dae_z.jpg" alt="Tips for Cutting Back This Christmas" title="Tips for Cutting Back This Christmas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some stellar articles on cutting back this Christmas, Black Friday myths debunked, and why your career is your most important investment.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://moneyning.com/money-beliefs/4-tips-for-cutting-back-this-christmas/">4 Tips for Cutting Back This Christmas</a> &mdash; Make cutbacks this Christmas by opting to buy one large gift and one small gift for your kids. [MoneyNing]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Black-Friday-Shopping-Myths-25825172">5 Black Friday Myths Debunked</a> &mdash; Don't believe the myth that Black Friday ads are accurate. Stores can adjust their prices according to other retailer's prices. [SavvySugar]</p> <p><a href="http://cashmoneylife.com/invest-in-your-career/">Why Your Career is Your Most Important Investment</a> &mdash; Since your career is the foundation on which all your other investments will be made, it is your most important investment. [Cash Money Life]</p> <p><a href="http://freefrombroke.com/steps-to-make-sure-you-are-financially-protected-from-the-next-natural-disaster/?utm_source=rss&amp;utm_medium=rss&amp;utm_campaign=steps-to-make-sure-you-are-financially-protected-from-the-next-natural-disaster">4 Steps to Make Sure You Are Financially Protected from the Next Natural Disaster</a> &mdash; Prepare yourself financially for the next natural disaster by making sure your insurance covers you for possible natural disasters. [Free From Broke]</p> <p><a href="http://christianpf.com/why-you-need-to-take-time-to-understand-medical-bills/">Why You Need to Take Time to Understand Medical Bills</a> &mdash; Take the time to understand your medical bills so you aren't overcharged. [Christian Personal Finance]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://livingonthecheap.com/2012/11/finding-hidden-money-for-your-holiday-budget/">Five places to find money for holiday gifts</a> &mdash; Use your change jar to fund your holiday gift expenses. [Living On The Cheap]</p> <p><a href="http://ptmoney.com/life-insurance-policy-lapse/">What to Do When You Accidentally Let Your Life Insurance Policy Lapse</a> &mdash; If you let your life insurance policy lapse, you must fill out an application for reinstatement. [PT Money]</p> <p><a href="http://www.consumerismcommentary.com/retirement-investing-priorities/">How to Optimize Your Retirement Investing Priorities</a> &mdash; Your number one priority in regards to retirement investing should be taking advantage of employer match contributions to your 401(k). [Consumerism Commentary]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thewisdomjournal.com/Blog/ten-job-interview-myths-debunked/?utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TheWisdomJournal+%28The+Wisdom+Journal%29">Ten Job Interview Myths Debunked</a> &mdash; It is a myth that an elaborate resume will impress potential employers. [The Wisdom Journal]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/to-harness-or-not-to-harness">To Harness or Not to Harness?</a> &mdash; If you want to encourage your child to explore, using a harness may not be the best way to do that. [Parenting Squad]</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-tips-for-cutting-back-this-christmas" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Tips for Cutting Back This Christmas" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Shopping best money tips Christmas cutbacks gifts shopping Tue, 13 Nov 2012 10:36:46 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 955763 at http://www.wisebread.com Get Ready for Christmas: 7 Things You Should Do Today http://www.wisebread.com/get-ready-for-christmas-7-things-you-should-do-today <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/get-ready-for-christmas-7-things-you-should-do-today" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/5299156140_2a5a5b7c59_z_0.jpg" alt="holiday family" title="holiday family" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="145" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Take your current schedule and imagine adding Christmas shopping, Christmas parties, and holiday travel all at once. I suspect you'll thank yourself come mid-December if you use the extra time you have now to get ready for Christmas. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/early-holiday-shopping-why-i-finish-by-thanksgiving">Early Holiday Shopping:&nbsp;Why&nbsp;I Finish by Thanksgiving</a>)</p> <h3>1. Set and Fund Your Christmas Budget</h3> <p>Every year there is a segment of the population that simply charges their gifts on their credit cards and then spends the rest of the next year trying to get caught up on their payments. Before you do any Christmas shopping, you need to determine <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-rules-for-planning-your-most-affordable-christmas-ever">how much you can afford</a>. From there, decide who to include and exclude from your list. To make it easy, try setting a per-person budget. For example, you'll buy $75 worth of gifts for each kid and $35 for each niece or nephew. You're much less likely to overspend if you've predetermined how much you'll spend on each person on your list. Don't forget to check it twice.</p> <h3>2. Start Making Homemade Gifts</h3> <p>Homemade and personalized Christmas gifts are the most memorable gifts you can give. Why? Because the recipient knows that you've invested a significant amount of your time. I often think about doing homemade gifts, but realize I don't have the time to complete a project. By brainstorming homemade ideas now, you're more likely to have the time necessary to complete the project.</p> <h3>3. If You Do Christmas Lists, Ask People to Get You Their Lists</h3> <p>My family does lists, and my wife's family does not. If you do ask people for <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/giving-back-to-those-not-necessarily-on-your-christmas-list">Christmas lists</a>, go ahead and contact them now. Inevitably, there is going to be one person who takes their time getting a list to you. That's less likely to be frustrating if you have an early start.</p> <h3>4. Start Watching for Sale Items</h3> <p>If you don't subscribe to the Sunday paper, you might want to pick one up over the next few months. Set aside 10 minutes every Sunday to glance through the ads and coupons. If you find an item on your list, snag it while it's on sale. Otherwise, what's probably going to happen is that you'll run to the store on the 24th and pay too much on a gift you don't want to buy.</p> <p>Our personal goal is to have all our Christmas shopping done by the last day of November. That way we don't have to fight against the holiday crowds.</p> <h3>5. Get Started on Your Christmas Cards</h3> <p>Imagine how amazing it would feel if all your Christmas cards were ready to send by Thanksgiving &mdash; wouldn't that be a relief? Go ahead and set a target goal of when you'd like to finish all your cards. Then create some type of plan to be done by that date. You could either mark off a morning on your calendar or do a little bit at a time.</p> <h3>6. Fill Up the Freezer</h3> <p>There are a lot of great meals that you can freeze ahead of time so you have food available when the holiday season gets really busy. One way to fill the freezer is to double or triple some of your recipes you'll be preparing in the next month. Serve a single portion, and freeze the extra portion. Another option is to block out a full cooking day where you make as many meals as possible and freeze them for the busy holiday season.</p> <h3>7. Practice Saying 'No,' and Offer an Alternative When Necessary</h3> <p>Most people I know spend their Christmas season busy doing things they didn't want to do in the first place. Start today by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-straightforward-ways-to-say-no">saying no to commitments</a> you know will cause you stress over the holidays.</p> <p>If saying no is hard, then offer an alternative. I won't be able to ____, but it would work if I could ____ instead.</p> <p>With an early start, you can survive the hectic holiday rush. I'm sure that in December you won't regret any of the time you've spent while the pace of life is comparatively slower.</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-ready-for-christmas-7-things-you-should-do-today" class="sharethis-link" title="Get Ready for Christmas: 7 Things You Should Do Today" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/craig-ford">Craig Ford</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> General Tips Lifestyle Shopping Christmas holiday gifts holiday sanity Thanksgiving Tue, 30 Oct 2012 10:24:34 +0000 Craig Ford 955133 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Make Christmas Shopping Simple http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-make-christmas-shopping-simple <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-make-christmas-shopping-simple" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/3107653724_baf3001e46_z-1.jpg" alt="Make Christmas Shopping Simple" title="Make Christmas Shopping Simple" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some awesome articles on making Christmas shopping simple, financial moves to consider for 2012, and mythbusting extreme couponing.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.thousandaire.com/blog/make-christmas-shopping-simple/">Make Christmas Shopping Simple</a> &mdash; Make Christmas shopping easy this year by finding a hobby you can give away. [Thousandaire]</p> <p><a href="http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/financials-moves-2012.html">Five Financial moves You Might Consider in 2012</a> &mdash; In 2012, consider saving more money for retirement. [Bargaineering]</p> <p><a href="http://www.budgetsaresexy.com/2011/12/mythbusters-extreme-couponing/?utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+budgetsaresexy+%28Budgets+are+Sexy.%29">Mythbusters: Extreme Couponing</a> &mdash; It turns out extreme couponing isn't quite as awesome as it appears on TV. [Budgets Are Sexy]</p> <p><a href="http://www.carefulcents.com/2011/12/6-signs-its-time-to-quit-and-move-on/">6 Signs It's Time to Quit and Move On</a> &mdash; If your job is affecting your health, it may be time to quit. [Careful Cents]</p> <p><a href="http://20andengaged.com/top-5-things-newlywed-homebuyers-need-to-know">Top 5 Things Newlywed Homebuyers Need to Know</a> &mdash; Newlywed homebuyers must remember that they must do their homework. [20 and Engaged]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Budget-Friendly-Hostess-Gift-Ideas-20908510">Budget-Friendly Gifts a Holiday Hostess Will Love</a> &mdash; This holiday season, get your hostess Chinese Checkers. [SavvySugar]</p> <p><a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/2011/4-volunteer-opportunities-promote-financial-literacy/">4 Volunteer Opportunities to Promote Financial Literacy</a> &mdash; Promote financial literacy by volunteering to be a credit counselor. [NerdWallet]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/prosquad-holiday-airline-flights-and-fevers-in-children">ProSquad: Holiday Airline Flights and Fevers in Children</a> &mdash; Sometimes it's best to let your child's body fight a fever on it's own. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.marcandangel.com/2011/12/18/30-things-to-start-doing-for-yourself/">30 Things to Start Doing for Yourself</a> &mdash; Starting today, try to notice and live in the present. [Marc and Angel Hack Life]</p> <p><a href="http://www.pickthebrain.com/blog/the-frugal-way-to-a-healthier-diet/">The Frugal Way to a Healthier Diet</a> &mdash; Develop a healthier diet by eating home cooking only. [PickTheBrain]</p> <h2>News &amp; Events</h2> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-100-most-popular-personal-finance-blogs/news/2011/11/wise-bread-tweetchat-wbchat-2">Wise Bread Tweetchat (#WBChat)</a> &mdash; Don't miss our weekly tweetchat at 12pm PST! We will be talking about holiday giving with special guest @Quizzle and will be giving away prizes!</p> <p>Be sure to check out our <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-100-most-popular-personal-finance-blogs/news">News &amp; Events Calendar</a> to see all the awesome upcoming events in the personal finance world!</p> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-make-christmas-shopping-simple" class="sharethis-link" title="Best Money Tips: Make Christmas Shopping Simple" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Shopping best money tips Christmas shopping Thu, 22 Dec 2011 11:00:10 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 836755 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Grinch-Free Ways To Celebrate The Holidays With Your Customers http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/5-grinch-free-ways-to-celebrate-the-holidays-with-your-customers <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/articles/5-grinch-free-ways-to-celebrate-the-holidays-with-your-customers" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/articles/5-grinch-free-ways-to-celebrate-the-holidays-w...</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/5-grinch-free-ways-to-celebrate-the-holidays-with-your-customers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://www.wisebread.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000011143458Small.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/5-grinch-free-ways-to-celebrate-the-holidays-with-your-customers" class="sharethis-link" title="5 Grinch-Free Ways To Celebrate The Holidays With Your Customers" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><p>Some business owners get a little skittish around the holidays&mdash;and with good reason. Navigating the holiday season with friends and family can be tough enough, but how do we figure out the best ways to share and celebrate with our customers? Businesses tend to worry about striking just the right celebratory chord, being sensitive to diverse religious faiths, and not overplaying or underplaying good cheer with their customers. What&rsquo;s the result? Companies that go dark during the holidays and managers who end up looking a bit too Grinch-like.</p> <p>Instead of being intimidated by the holidays, look for ways to share in the joy of the season and promote good-will all year long. Here are five thoughtful, yet entirely professional approaches to celebrate the holidays with your clients and customers.</p> <p><strong>1. Send Cards</strong></p> <p>Tasteful cards are a simple, inexpensive, and professional way to thank your customers for their patronage.</p> <p>But subtlety and generalization win in this category.</p> <p>Remember, your card will be seen by many sets of eyes throughout the office. Opt for cards that are non-denominational and provide a general &ldquo;Happy Holidays&rdquo; greeting rather than a &ldquo;Merry Christmas&rdquo; message. You may even consider designing your own holiday cards and doing a small-batch printing for a more personal touch.</p> <p><strong>2. Give a Gift</strong></p> <p>For companies with large enough budgets or a small enough customer base, a token of appreciation might be the ideal way to celebrate the season.</p> <p>Gift baskets, coffee, a good bottle of wine, or gift cards are all great places to start.</p> <p>A small advertising firm I know in the Midwest designs a unique tree ornament each year and has them produced in limited quantities by a local metal smith. Their customers collect them over the years and it&rsquo;s become a popular signature gift.</p> <p><strong>3. Offer a Discount</strong></p> <p>Consider celebrating with your customers by offering a discount on purchases made during the holidays.</p> <p>A one-time discount or special promotion that lasts all month not only benefits your customers; it encourages continued sales. But avoid turning a good gesture into bad PR&mdash;clearly specify the terms of the discount, when it ends, and any special exclusions that may apply.</p> <p><strong>4. Make a Charitable Donation</strong></p> <p>Promote a bit of holiday philanthropy by sponsoring a different charity each holiday season or offering to match a portion of your customers&rsquo; charitable donations during the holidays.</p> <p>Charity creates enormous goodwill and is a classy way to give a nod to the true meaning of the holidays and do good work. If your company chooses its own charitable cause, stay above the fray by selecting one that can be widely endorsed and doesn&rsquo;t inspire controversy or reflect ideological divides.</p> <p><strong>5. Host a Special Event</strong></p> <p>For a more face-to-face approach, host <a href="http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/money/article/simple-ways-to-save-on-catering-costs-1" target="_blank">a holiday party for your customers</a>.</p> <p>Whether formal or casual, a party gives you the chance to connect with customers in a more intimate, light-hearted, and festive atmosphere. For this approach, set some ground rules for your accounts and sales teams&mdash;keep the tone casual and celebratory without sales pitches. Remember, the goal is to wrap up the year on a positive and warm note. There&rsquo;ll be time enough for upselling after the New Year.</p> <p>Ultimately, the holidays should be a chance to celebrate with your customers, take a moment to reflect on the passing year and look forward to the new. So don&rsquo;t let your business fall victim to the Grinch. Some planning and a little extra effort now will help forge strong relationships, show your customers you appreciate their partnership, and add to the joy of the season.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> and published on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/"> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Small Business Resource Center Christmas christmas ideas holiday celebrations holiday promotions Holidays small business Sun, 20 Nov 2011 23:40:58 +0000 Kentin Waits 781125 at http://www.wisebread.com