Christmas http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/38/all en-US 8 Reasons to Skip the Big Holiday Dinner This Year http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/unhappy_boy_stands_before_chistmas_tree.jpg" alt="Unhappy boy stands before chistmas tree" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's something you feel like you just can't avoid, and so you do it every year. The big holiday dinner. The one that, supposedly, everyone looks forward to. But do they really? Do you? For some, it can be an awful lot of stress. For others, the thought of those two particular family members in the same house, at the same time, is unbearable. Here's a reminder of why the holidays aren't always festive, and why you might consider opting out. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Ways to Relax Over the Holidays</a>)</p> <h2>1. Do you really need two big dinners in two months?</h2> <p>Let's start with the most obvious reason to skip the big holiday this year &hellip; there's more than one of them.</p> <p>Most Americans celebrate Thanksgiving, followed a month later by either Christmas or Hanukkah. Each one of those holidays is accompanied by a gathering of family and friends around some kind of feast. Why not skip one of them and put all the effort into the most important holiday for your family. When it comes to Christmas, people are so busy opening gifts and playing with toys that the additional feast on top can be a real strain. And with plenty of eateries open throughout the holiday season, you can either pop out for a meal, order in, or make something quick and easy. After all, it's not really about the food, it's the company. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-alternative-ways-to-do-thanksgiving?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Alternative Ways to Do Thanksgiving</a>)</p> <h2>2. The clean up afterward is a pain</h2> <p>Large metal trays filled with grease. Pans caked in potatoes and gravy. A mountain of dirty plates, cups, and utensils. You're going to be at the sink for hours doing all the rinsing, scraping, and preparation for the dishwasher. And even then, the chances of getting it all in one dishwasher load are slim. That means you'll be back for a second round, after putting away the dishes from the first round. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tricks-to-keeping-your-kitchen-clean-while-you-cook?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Tricks to Keeping Your Kitchen Clean While You Cook</a>)</p> <h2>3. The preparation takes days</h2> <p>Right now, if you're celebrating Thanksgiving this year, you're already making plans for the big dinner. You have ideas of what you're going to make, and what the other guests will be bringing. There will be countless trips to the grocery store. You'll have to get that turkey brined if you don't want it to be as dry as a mouthful of sawdust. And let's not forget about the scheduling to make sure everyone gets their dishes into the oven at the right time, and everything gets onto the table when it's hot. There is a monumental amount of prep work involved in a dinner of this magnitude, and it can get even worse with issues like gluten sensitivities and other food allergies. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-can-throw-a-fun-and-affordable-holiday-party-heres-how?ref=seealso" target="_blank">You Can Throw a Fun and Affordable Holiday Party &mdash; Here's How</a>)</p> <p>Who needs that kind of headache?</p> <h2>4. Who needs a political debate?</h2> <p>After a certain Donald J. Trump won a divisive election against Hillary Clinton, America has become fanatical about taking sides. Yes, politics is important to discuss to a degree, but should it break up families and cause screaming matches? The chances are, the more people you have in the room, the more heated the conversation will be. Fights are inevitable, even if you have a &quot;no politics&quot; rule at the table. So, skip the big dinner, and make it a more casual affair. Perhaps a buffet people can pick at during the day will make it easier to avoid certain topics &mdash; and certain grumpy uncles. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-conversation-tricks-thatll-get-you-out-of-a-political-discussion?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Conversation Tricks That'll Get You Out of a Political Discussion</a>)</p> <h2>5. So many calories!</h2> <p>We all joke about it to some extent. &quot;Oh man&hellip;I am going to eat so much on Thanksgiving that I will literally turn into a giant pumpkin.&quot; However, there is a serious side to this. According to the Calorie Control Council, the typical holiday dinner alone clocks in at a whopping 3,000 calories! That's not including all the snacks, drinks, cakes, sweets, and other goodies people consume throughout the day. And let's not forget, those Thanksgiving dinner recipes rarely include the healthy options. It's all butter, heavy cream, bacon, fat, and other artery-clogging foods. The Calorie Control Council states that on the day, the average person will eat enough fat to equal three whole sticks of butter. Holy heart attack, Batman. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-vegetarian-thanksgiving-dishes-that-hold-their-own-with-turkey?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Vegetarian Thanksgiving Dishes That Hold Their Own With Turkey</a>)</p> <h2>6. There's no room to store anything</h2> <p>When you start prepping for the big day, you realize that space is a premium that's consumed by a holiday dinner. The turkey alone can take up an enormous part of the fridge. Then there are all the extra fruits and vegetables, the cakes and pies, and enough snacks and candies to make the pantry door swell. You come home one day to find boxes of cookies overflowing onto the counters and the dining room table. You have to eat a bunch of food quickly to make space for more food that will be eaten on the big day. And get ready for that space to continue to be tight after the event, with all the leftovers and extra treats that people were too full to even touch.</p> <h2>7. Not everyone loves big holiday events</h2> <p>Like anything else in life, people have different ideas on what makes for a fun, entertaining event. For some people, these dinners are the opposite of happy. They may simply hate large gatherings. Or, they may be avoiding certain people for any number of reasons, only to be forced to sit around the same table with them for an evening. They may have other reasons, like the cost to attend, or the fact that they would much prefer to do something more intimate with just their immediate family. Why not send out a survey, that can be answered anonymously, asking the people you were planning to invite if that actually want to do it this year. You may be surprised at the results. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-friendsgiving-hacks-thatll-make-everyone-feel-at-home?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Friendsgiving Hacks That'll Make Everyone Feel at Home</a>)</p> <h2>8. Getting there can be expensive</h2> <p>The average cost of a Thanksgiving dinner that feeds 10 people is around $50, according the American Farm Bureau Federation. That's a bargain right?! Well, that's the cost of dinner, and yes, it's cheap at $5 a head. However, the biggest expense for the holiday dinner for many people is the travel. Not every family is lucky enough to live 20 minutes from their relatives. Some have to drive across the country, staying in hotels and paying for many tanks of gas. Others fly, which as we all know includes not just the price of the ticket, but the baggage, seat selection, and check-in. If there is not enough room at the house, these people also have to shell out for hotel rooms, and perhaps a rental car. It's perfectly OK to let your family and friends know that you're watching your money this year, and cannot come. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-save-money-on-holiday-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Ways to Save on Holiday Travel</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-cheap-and-delicious-punch-recipes-for-holiday-parties">15 Cheap and Delicious Punch Recipes for Holiday Parties</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-give-back-this-thanksgiving">7 Easy Ways to Give Back This Thanksgiving</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-seasonal-side-hustles-thatll-cover-your-holiday-spending">8 Seasonal Side Hustles That&#039;ll Cover Your Holiday Spending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-vegetarian-thanksgiving-dishes-that-hold-their-own-with-turkey">6 Vegetarian Thanksgiving Dishes That Hold Their Own With Turkey</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays">8 Ways to Actually Relax Over the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Christmas etiquette family holiday meals Holidays manners Thanksgiving Thu, 16 Nov 2017 09:00:06 +0000 Paul Michael 2054953 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/gift_of_money_against a_defocused_background_and_christmas_lights.jpg" alt="Gift of Money against a Defocused Background and Christmas Lights" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The holidays are here today, gone tomorrow &mdash; and it's easy to get caught up in a tinseled tornado of financial distress if you're not careful. Avoid that fate this season with these self-imposed goals on how to better manage your holiday budget. It'll help you start the New Year financially fresh and fancy-free.</p> <h2>1. Stop spending money on gifts people don't need</h2> <p>When planning out your holiday gift list, think long and hard about what those people on your list may want or need. Don't be afraid to ask them, either. I always ask friends and family if they have something specific in mind &mdash; and I staunchly believe in getting what they'll love and use, so long as it fits into my budget.</p> <p>Sometimes they provide solid ideas, and other times I get the ol' &quot;I don't need anything&quot; routine, even though they know good and well I'm going to buy them something anyway. (Way to help, Dad.) If you're unsure about a gift, or you feel like you're buying something just to buy it, think again. There's no reason to spend your money on something that will go unused, or even worse, be regifted.</p> <p>When in doubt, a gift card to a favorite store generally works well &mdash; and you should take advantage of the ubiquitous &quot;Spend $X in gift cards and get a $X gift card for free&quot; promotions that many retailers and restaurants offer during the holidays. Stretch that cash every way you can. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Save on Christmas Shopping With This Clever Gift Card Strategy</a>)</p> <h2>2. Stop spending money on people who don't need gifts</h2> <p>Does <em>everyone</em> you know need a gift? Will you even see the recipients this holiday season? Are you disproportionately spending money on the people you do buy for? If money is tight and you're stuck in a pattern of buying gifts because you feel obligated, stand up for yourself and put a stop to it.</p> <p>Several years ago, my brother, cousin, and a few of my best friends started churning out children left and right. I had to make the tough decision to cut the adults off my list. I couldn't afford to buy for everyone, so I chose the kids instead. I've never looked back on that decision with any regrets. I get to be the cool uncle who always gives the best presents &mdash; all while being able to save money despite that distinction.</p> <h2>3. Select, make, and &quot;buy&quot; gifts from stuff you already have</h2> <p>There's only one rule to regifting, in my opinion: Make sure the regift doesn't end up anywhere near the person who gave it to you in the first place. Bad form. Otherwise, please, regift items that were given to you that you haven't used (so long as they're still unopened and/or haven't expired). The same goes for unused items that you bought for yourself throughout the year (like clothing with the tags still on). Gift them to someone you think will appreciate them to help keep more money in your pocket.</p> <p>I'm also a big fan of making gifts by hand. For instance, I'm hosting a small dinner party in December, and I'm making my guests a little take-home gift consisting of a festive homemade body scrub, a hand-poured holiday candle, and a bottle of wine I've recently made from a kit.</p> <p>Simple, inexpensive, thoughtful &mdash; that's the name of the game. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy?ref=seealso" target="_blank">25 Gifts You Can Make Today</a>)</p> <h2>4. Concentrate on eliminating existing debt before racking up more</h2> <p>One of your top money goals this time of year should be focusing on debt you already have instead of racking up more buying gifts. That's not always easy to do during the holidays, but the due diligence will pay off.</p> <p>If you have existing credit card debt, try your best not to make only the minimum monthly payments. Instead, begin paying a bit extra toward the principal starting with the card with the highest interest rate. This repayment strategy (otherwise known as the debt avalanche) will save you the most money overall on interest payments. High interest rates are what's keeping you in debt, and the faster you reduce or pay these cards off, the better. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fastest-way-to-pay-off-10000-in-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Fastest Way to Pay Off $10,000 in Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>5. Make a list of gift recipients and assign a budget per person</h2> <p>I like to plan out my gift buying to the tee, because I know how bad I can be with impulse purchases around the holidays. You know what it's like: You plan to get your mom a nice perfume set, but then you see this great piece of jewelry on sale &mdash; and your entire budget unravels before your eyes.</p> <p>To combat this habit, I make an itemized list of what I'd like to buy for each person and assign a top-line budget based on the advertised retail price. And then I get to work. Before I make the final purchases, I scour my apps for cash-back deals, search the internet for promo codes, cash in my retailer rewards, and try to plan my in-store shopping around major sales. It helps that I get just about every circular and marketing email known to man &mdash; so I'm always abreast of what deals are going down &mdash; but you'll find equal savings with your own resourcefulness and research.</p> <p>The point of all this extra legwork is to drastically come in below the gifts' retail prices so you cannot only stay under budget but, in fact, walk away from the holidays a solid winner. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/avoid-these-5-common-holiday-budget-pitfalls?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Avoid These 5 Common Holiday Budget Pitfalls</a>)</p> <h2>6. Pay for gifts strictly from your holiday-spending envelope</h2> <p>Once you've made your itemized list of gifts and determined the overall budget, take out the cash from the bank, stick it in an envelope, and use only that money to buy gifts. There is no other alternative; this is all the money you have to spend, and you need to stick to this plan. If what you want to buy is online, consult your budget to make sure you're on track, then use your debit card. Then, immediately replace the deduction by making a deposit into your checking account so everything balances out. Yeah, it's old school &mdash; but it works.</p> <h2>7. Put any cash gifts you receive into savings or toward bills</h2> <p>Plan to put any holiday cash you receive from family members straight into your savings account or toward bills. This savings tactic isn't any fun &mdash; I understand &mdash; but you'll likely receive plenty of gift cards that you can spend instead that will help quell your urge to blow everything before the holidays even come to a close.</p> <h2>8. Shop with a buddy to keep each other away from impulse buys</h2> <p>I like shopping alone for several reasons. For starters, I don't have to wait on my companions and they don't have to wait on me, which, when shopping together, can really zap the relaxation out of my leisurely pace. Furthermore, I don't like people's opinions of my purchases or their comments about whether I really need this or that. It's my money, and I'll buy what I want.</p> <p>Except around holiday time.</p> <p>This is the time of year I like to employ the buddy system when shopping for the sole purpose of keeping each other focused on our lists and away from impulse buys. Because if my bestie can't smack my hand in public and tell me no, who can? That's what friends are for.</p> <h2>9. Lay the groundwork for 2018 and the future of your finances</h2> <p>There are a million things happening during the holidays, but that doesn't mean you can't look ahead and prepare yourself financially for the New Year. In fact, you owe it to yourself.</p> <p>Kevin Driscoll, VP of Advisory Services for Navy Federal Financial Group, agrees.</p> <p>&quot;If you're not already doing so, begin contributing to your 401(k),&quot; he says. &quot;Make 2018 the year of financial freedom in retirement by saving now. Check out the retirement plan your employer offers, and if they offer a match, be sure to take advantage of this.&quot;</p> <p>Also worth considering is investing in an online investment platform.</p> <p>&quot;You'll find that there are many sites that allow you to make minimal contributions to buy a portion of a stock,&quot; Driscoll continues. &quot;This is a great way to get your feet wet with investing and hopefully make some extra money, too. Additionally, these platforms are generally low maintenance, and don't require any prior knowledge of the market or investing.&quot;</p> <h2>10. Find ways to spend and save even smarter</h2> <p>Every year, one of your top resolutions should be to stay on top of your finances and to improve your own money management. How do you do that? That's really up to you, but it will require due diligence on your part. It could be as easy as subscribing to personal finance blogs so you'll receive the latest financial self-help articles in your inbox, or maybe you can enroll in a local course that will help you better understand your money and your relationship with it. Both of these tactics combined would be great, too.</p> <p>The point is, you should continue to educate yourself about how to spend and save smarter so you can achieve your goals and live a life free from the burden of debt. Easier said than accomplished, but people just like you do it on a regular basis. Invest in yourself and it will pay off eventually. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-financial-resolutions-you-can-conquer-before-new-years?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Financial Resolutions You Can Conquer Before New Year's</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season">8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending">5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-financial-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season">13 Financial Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-easy-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-during-the-holidays">3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Credit Score During the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance budgets cash Christmas deals debt gifts Holidays sales saving money shopping Spending Money Wed, 15 Nov 2017 09:00:09 +0000 Mikey Rox 2053944 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/laughing_girl_with_falling_confetti_at_party.jpg" alt="Laughing girl with falling confetti at party" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Remember when the holidays were all about simple pleasures like spending time with family and exchanging modest gifts? Neither do I. Holidays have taken on a life of their own, turning otherwise reasonable folks into consumer zombies and blowing up the budgets of too many Americans. This year, let's celebrate simplicity and financial solvency. Here are the secrets to a debt-free holiday season.</p> <h2>1. Push back against &quot;holiday sprawl&quot;</h2> <p>Ever feel like the holidays come earlier, last longer, and require more gifts, more elaborate decorations, more money, and more travel? Let's call this endless expansion what it is &mdash; <em>holiday sprawl</em>. Fight back by embracing the idea of <em>enough</em>. Suggest (and stick to) reasonable spending limits and keep ballooning expectations in check. Your budget will thank you. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-you-can-do-right-now-for-a-frugal-holiday-season?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Things You Can Do Right Now for a Frugal Holiday Season</a>)</p> <h2>2. Shop early and shop around</h2> <p>Bright lights, big crowds, sales of the century &mdash; it's enough to make even the most levelheaded shopper lose control. Skip all the holiday madness by shopping early (I start in September and try to finish by Thanksgiving). You'll have more time to compare prices, shop for sales, and space out purchases so you won't have to rely on credit. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-january-is-the-right-time-to-start-planning-for-christmas?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Reasons January Is the Right Time to Start Planning for Christmas</a>)</p> <h2>3. Slow down</h2> <p>Holidays can be frantic. In the rush of activity, we often make bad decisions about what to buy and how much to spend. Slow. Things. Down. Break up your shopping excursions into several smaller trips and avoid shopping on days when you have a thousand other things to do. When shopping online, load your virtual cart, but don't commit to buy until you've thought about your choices overnight.</p> <h2>4. Avoid gimmicks</h2> <p>The holiday season can make or break retailers. To help us stretch our spending muscles, almost every store features blowout sales or deals that require the purchase of multiples (10 for $10). My advice? Be skeptical. That &quot;biggest sale of the year&quot; probably isn't. And what are you going to do with 10 bacon-scented candles, anyway?</p> <h2>5. Pay cash</h2> <p>Do you tend to spend more when you use credit? You're not alone. Paying by credit card &mdash; or worse yet, smartphone &mdash; blunts the conscious connection between spending more money and having less money. Make this holiday a cash-only affair. It'll keep your accounts in the black and make your first credit card bill of the new year a lot less frightening.</p> <h2>6. Make your gifts</h2> <p>Exchanging handmade gifts can be wonderful, even among adults. Buck the retail trend altogether and focus on your talents. Are you an expert baker? A gifted artist? An inspired brewmaster? Explore Pinterest for inexpensive homemade holiday gift ideas, then tap into your creative spirit. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-spend-almost-nothing-on-gifts-this-year?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Gift Ideas That Cost Almost Nothing</a>)</p> <h2>7. Skip the greeting cards</h2> <p>I didn't get the memo: When did everyone decide that $14.99 is an acceptable price for a box of holiday cards? This year, save a few bucks by ditching the costly cards and postage. Instead, send a group email or catch up with a leisurely phone call.</p> <h2>8. Share experiences</h2> <p>If money's tight, swap traditional gifts for the gift of time together. Organize a holiday potluck, host a movie night with friends, or coordinate a charity event where everyone contributes a few hours of their time as a group. After all, what could be better than good food, good friends, and goodwill?</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-simple-holiday-budget-anyone-can-follow">The Simple Holiday Budget Anyone Can Follow</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-reasons-to-last-minute-holiday-shop">9 Smart Reasons to Last-Minute Holiday Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-bounce-back-from-your-holiday-splurge">How to Bounce Back From Your Holiday Splurge</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Debt Management Lifestyle cash Christmas gifts holiday debt Holidays homemade gifts sales tactics shopping Spending Money Mon, 13 Nov 2017 09:00:07 +0000 Kentin Waits 2050494 at http://www.wisebread.com Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists http://www.wisebread.com/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother_and_daughter_exchanging_gifts.jpg" alt="Mother and daughter exchanging gifts" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Giving my children Hannukah presents is one of my favorite parts of the holidays. Seeing their faces light up when they open a gift is one of the best feelings in the world.</p> <p>However, it can be very easy for kids to overlook the message of generosity that we are trying to teach for Christmas and Hannukah. They are bombarded by advertisements on all sides and constant reminders that the holidays are on their way &mdash; which means kids can often fall prey to the <em>gimme gimmes.</em> Many parents see this play out when they ask their kids to create a holiday wish list, and receive an eight-page, single-spaced list of expensive items.</p> <p>But just because children can learn the wrong things from holiday gifts doesn't mean they have to. In fact, parents can use the practice of writing a gift list to teach their kids about budgeting, frugality, generosity, and managing expectations. This year, try one of the following holiday gift lists to help your children learn about money and the true spirit of giving. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About Money</a>)</p> <h2>1. The four gift list</h2> <p>Families following the four gift list rule will give each child:</p> <ul> <li> <p>Something they want.</p> </li> <li> <p>Something they need.</p> </li> <li> <p>Something to wear.</p> </li> <li> <p>Something to read.</p> </li> </ul> <p>When your kids are penning their holiday wish lists, tell them to place each item in one of these four categories. You can make it clear that they can put more than one item in each category, but they will only receive one present from each category. This will help them to better understand the things they truly need and recognize how much they value their various wanted items. If everything on their list is a want, this exercise will help them manage their expectations. It can also potentially spur them to find needs, clothes, and books that they are excited to receive.</p> <p>This rule is also very helpful for parents who often go overboard with gift shopping. When you see something adorable that you'd love to give your child, you'll have to decide if it's worthy of being one of only four &quot;somethings&quot; on the list.</p> <h2>2. Include gifts to others</h2> <p>Last winter, my sons were delighted to watch the animated adaptation of <em>The Snowy Day</em> by Ezra Jack Keats on Amazon. We had long been fans of the classic book, and the sweet story of Peter's adventure in the snow was expanded to tell an animated Christmas story in this short film.</p> <p>One of my favorite parts of the adaptation was the story of Peter's Jewish friend Layla, who delivers a gift to a charity on the sixth night of Hannukah. She explains that it's her family's tradition to give instead of receive on that night of Hannukah, and she and her mother have picked out something special to give away.</p> <p>This tradition is very well-suited to Hannukah, which lasts for eight nights. Parents can easily set aside one night to be about giving to those less fortunate rather than receiving &mdash; but any family can encourage their children to think of others when making their holiday gift lists.</p> <p>In addition to writing down the things that they want, your kids can also include a list of gifts they can give to others. These could be traditional gifts for families in need, or they can be more creative, like writing letters to deployed soldiers or volunteering. By including a place for giving back on their holiday wish list, your kids will learn to associate generosity with your holiday traditions.</p> <h2>3. Create a gift-giving theme</h2> <p>For older children, a fun way to celebrate the holidays and teach frugality is to set a theme for gift giving. For instance, Stacia Mcclure's family would give everyone a hard spending limit, and specify where everyone could shop: &quot;One year, we decided all gifts had to come from a truck stop &mdash; and gift cards were excluded. My dad still talks about that year because he got an entire box of Necco wafers. The hospital gift shop Christmas was also quite entertaining.&quot;</p> <p>Other types of holiday themes might include only buying &quot;As Seen on TV&quot; items, books, games, or food items.</p> <p>Picking a &quot;theme&quot; helps teenagers learn to be creative within a spending framework, which is excellent practice for learning how to be frugal. A teen who can have fun and give a meaningful (or at least hilarious) low-cost gift from a truck stop will learn to think outside the box when it comes to tougher money decisions. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-steps-to-stress-free-holiday-gift-giving?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Steps to Stress-Free Holiday Gift Giving</a>)</p> <h2>4. Ask them to pick a stock</h2> <p>Several years ago, Stephanie McCullough's daughter asked for a new iPod for the holidays. &quot;Instead, I bought her two shares of Apple,&quot; McCullough says, &quot;which cost about the same as a new device at the time. There was no way to know this at the time, but the stock has skyrocketed since then.&quot;</p> <p>If you let your children know that you plan to buy them a share of a company they like, you will not only be giving them a gift that will keep on giving, but you can also help to spark an interest in finance.</p> <p>They can either pick a publicly-traded company they like, or they can do a little research into how well their favorite companies have fared in the market. The latter will help them start to get a sense of figuring out what makes a good investment. Even if they don't research their stock before including it on their gift list, you can invite them to track the stock's price over time to see how their gift is doing.</p> <h2>5. Include a time gift</h2> <p>As much as your children love ripping the wrapping paper off a new toy, what they really want most is to spend time with their parents. You can give them the gift of your time by asking them to include a request on their gift list for something you can do together. For instance, your child might list &quot;baking cookies together&quot; or &quot;going fishing together&quot; on their wish list.</p> <p>While you could always create a &quot;coupon&quot; for the requested time gift, you can also find a small tangible item you could give your child to use for their time gift. For instance, you might give them a new cookbook that you can peruse together to find the perfect cookie recipe, or a fishing hat for them to wear next time you go to the lake.</p> <p>By having your child include a time gift request on their holiday wish list, you are teaching them that the best gifts come from being together, rather than spending lots of money.</p> <h2>The benefit of limits</h2> <p>The magic of the holiday season does not come from tearing into an enormous pile of presents, even though much of our culture tries to convince kids otherwise. Teaching your children to use frameworks for thinking about their holiday gift wishes can help them to better appreciate the real lessons of the season, as well as learn some important money skills that will last them well into adulthood.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fteach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FTeach%2520Your%2520Kids%2520About%2520Money%2520With%2520Their%2520Holiday%2520Gift%2520Lists.jpg&amp;description=Teach%20Your%20Kids%20About%20Money%20With%20Their%20Holiday%20Gift%20Lists"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Teach%20Your%20Kids%20About%20Money%20With%20Their%20Holiday%20Gift%20Lists.jpg" alt="Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money">How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-financial-gifts-mom-will-love-for-mothers-day">6 Financial Gifts Mom Will Love for Mother&#039;s Day</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-stocks-your-kids-would-love-to-own">5 Stocks Your Kids Would Love to Own</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-top-money-lessons-to-learn-from-ruth-soukups-unstuffed">4 Top Money Lessons to Learn From Ruth Soukup&#039;s &quot;Unstuffed&quot;</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-season-give-your-child-the-gift-of-fiscal-responsibility">This Season, Give Your Child the Gift of Fiscal Responsibility</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Family children Christmas gifts hannukah Holidays kids money lessons presents stocks wish lists Thu, 09 Nov 2017 08:00:09 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2046508 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Seasonal Side Hustles That'll Cover Your Holiday Spending http://www.wisebread.com/8-seasonal-side-hustles-thatll-cover-your-holiday-spending <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-seasonal-side-hustles-thatll-cover-your-holiday-spending" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/santa_claus_sitting_down.jpg" alt="Santa Claus sitting down" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The stores have been stocking decorations for months now. Seasonal music is starting to play. Catalogs are being mailed out. There's no escaping it: The holidays are coming, and with them, wallet-emptying events, gift purchases, and groceries.</p> <p>If you're thinking, &quot;How am I going to afford it all?&quot; then maybe it's worth looking into a seasonal side hustle. These suggestions will put a bit of extra cash in your pocket &mdash; and you may even find yourself having a lot of fun along the way. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-best-side-jobs-for-fast-cash?ref=seealso" target="_blank">14 Best Side Jobs For Fast Cash</a>)</p> <h2>1. Mall Santa (or one of his elves)</h2> <p>It wouldn't be the festive season without a visit to Santa at your local mall. Almost every shopping center in the country will set up a grotto of some kind, and outfit it with a Santa look-alike and perhaps an elf or two.</p> <p>Obviously, the first and biggest qualification for this job is that you should kind of look like Santa to begin with. Although fake beards and wigs are used, most of the mall Santas these days have their own flowing white beards. Not only will you need to look the part, but sounding jovial and belting out the &quot;Ho, ho, ho&quot; tagline is also a must. You should be ready to wear a smile all day, be very excited for every kid, and have a genuine love for children and the season.</p> <p>Although the average mall Santa makes around $10 per hour, some establishments pay up to $20 per hour or higher. If you don't bag the part of Santa, there are also openings for Mrs. Claus in some malls, or elves and other helpers.</p> <h2>2. House decorator</h2> <p>While most of us like the tradition of putting up the tree and decorations after Thanksgiving, some people either cannot do it themselves or would rather someone else do it. That's where you can come in and make a tidy sum.</p> <p>As you would expect, this is a very seasonal business model and is only going to give you about three to four weeks of work at best. But even if you only do it on nights and weekends for a few weeks, you can earn anywhere from $50 to thousands of dollar per home, depending on the scale, the difficulty, and the wealth of the family. Do a couple of these gigs, and you'll have more than enough to fulfill every gift wish on the list.</p> <p>You will need some basic equipment, including a long ladder, staple gun, and working knowledge of electrical systems, and should be prepared to work in the rain, snow, and hail. You'll also need to be able to transport your equipment and be ready to come out and fix issues after you have installed the lights.</p> <h2>3. Package delivery</h2> <p>'Tis the season to completely overload the mail system. And there have never been more opportunities available to help deliver those packages and make a bundle of extra cash in your spare time.</p> <p>Right now, Amazon is boosting jobs in many areas of its business, and one of those is delivery. It's called <a href="https://flex.amazon.com/" target="_blank">Amazon Flex</a> and it pays $18&ndash;$25 per hour. You set your own schedule, so it's ideal as a side hustle that you can do after work and on weekends.</p> <p>There are also services like <a href="https://www.doorman.co/delivery-drivers/" target="_blank">Doorman</a> that put you in touch with a wide range of companies looking for help delivering packages. You may also be able to deduct the mileage and transportation costs from your taxes. And with every smartphone having some kind of GPS map service installed, you don't have to know the area well to deliver packages in a timely fashion.</p> <h2>4. House and pet sitting</h2> <p>We're approaching some major holidays, including the mother of all get-togethers &mdash; Thanksgiving. Before the big day, thousands of people pack their bags and travel around the country to be with family and friends, leaving homes and pets in need of caretakers. And that's when you can step in and make a nice chunk of change.</p> <p>Put an ad up on Craigslist, or make your services known on an app like <a href="https://nextdoor.com/login/" target="_blank">Nextdoor</a>, <a href="https://www.rover.com" target="_blank">Rover</a>, or <a href="https://dogvacay.com/" target="_blank">DogVacay</a>. Obviously, you will want to get a group of solid references together; people are not going to entrust their home, valuables, and pets to a complete stranger without some great reviews. And if you have done this kind of thing before, even better.</p> <p>The owners may want to do a background check on you, and you should be willing to help pay for that. However, for just a few days of work doing basically nothing, you can net $250&ndash;$300 easily. It can be a lot more if there are many pets to look after. And if you need to be walking the dogs, too, that can also add to your fee. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-400-a-week-as-a-pet-sitter?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Make $400+ a Week as a Pet Sitter</a>)</p> <h2>5. In-store gift wrapping</h2> <p>Are your gift-wrapping skills the envy of your family and friends? Can you wrap all sorts of gifts, including those with weird shapes and sizes? Are you OK standing on your feet for almost the whole day? If you were nodding your head through that whole intro, you could pick up some great seasonal work as a gift wrap associate in one of the many stores in the mall.</p> <p>This time of year, free gift wrapping is a big lure for shoppers. Department stores, toy stores, and lingerie stores in particular love to offer free gift wrapping, and you can make $10&ndash;$12 per hour, plus tips, for providing this much-appreciated service.</p> <p>You will have to perform under pressure at times, especially during Black Friday and the week before Christmas, and you may also have to smile through the comments of irate customers. But if none of this phases you, you can make enough money to easily cover your own holiday spending.</p> <h2>6. Warehouse associate</h2> <p>As the demand for products increases toward the end of the year, many companies take on part-time warehouse associates to help out. From Amazon and Walmart, to UPS and FedEx, the type of job you will be doing varies from company to company.</p> <p>For example, Amazon warehouse workers could be selecting and boxing up groceries for their Fresh and Pantry services, or packing up regular orders from its massive inventory. Amazon fulfillment centers are located in many states around the country, and chances are your state has one already, or one is coming soon.</p> <p>Although it is part time work, the flexible hours may not be an ideal match if you have a current full time job. This is shift work, and working from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. is common. Also, you'll need to dress warm in some states, as the warehouses can get pretty cold. You'll also be expected to lift around 50 lbs. with ease, and as this is a very physical job, you should be in fairly good shape. You can expect to earn around $10&ndash;$12 per hour, plus you'll probably get overtime pay and other benefits.</p> <h2>7. Uber or Lyft driver</h2> <p>A lot of people are already doing the &quot;taxi driver in my spare time&quot; gig, but things get really busy during the holiday season. Additional drivers are always going to be welcome, especially this time of year. So if you have a car that's in good condition, reliable, and you don't mind putting on extra miles and wear, you should consider the Uber and Lyft option around the holidays.</p> <p><a href="https://uber.7eer.net/c/27771/207645/3437" target="_blank">Uber</a> and Lyft drivers make around $15 per hour, and Lyft offers weekly income guarantees that vary by city. You should be prepared to work most evenings and weekends leading up to the end of the year, and even with all the extra cabs on the roads, you can still expect to take advantage of surge pricing and make a handsome profit.</p> <p>On Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Eve, it's not unusual to see the fares surge by six or seven times. And on New Year's Eve, people have paid 10 times the normal fare to get home. That's $300 for a cab that would usually cost $30. Do a few of those and you're really in the money.</p> <p>If you prefer not to chauffeur, Uber also offers the Uber Eats service. That would simply mean picking up and dropping off food without ever having anyone in your car. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Make More Money as an Uber Driver</a>)</p> <h2>8. Mystery shopping</h2> <p>With the holiday season comes a massive influx of traffic to brick and mortar stores nationwide. And to ensure standards are kept high, these businesses employ mystery shoppers to evaluate and report back.</p> <p>If you aren't familiar with the role, mystery shopping is a job that you do in your spare time, based on assignments sent to you by companies as varied as grocery stores, car dealerships, restaurants, and even liquor outlets. You will shop at the store like a regular customer, and never reveal your intentions to the employees. You make a purchase, interact with the staff, and report your findings to the company that employed you. You will be reimbursed for the item you purchased (there will be a limit based on the store you're in) plus additional money for your time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/check-out-these-5-legit-mystery-shopping-gigs?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Check Out These 5 Legit Mystery Shopping Gigs</a>)</p> <p>You can have a lot of fun getting paid to do things most people have to pay money to do. However, there are plenty of scams out there, so make sure you register with a legitimate <a href="http://www.mspa-na.org/" target="_blank">Mystery Shopping Providers Association of North America</a> member.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-seasonal-side-hustles-thatll-cover-your-holiday-spending&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%2520Seasonal%2520Side%2520Hustles%2520That%2527ll%2520Cover%2520Your%2520Holiday%2520Spending.jpg&amp;description=8%20Seasonal%20Side%20Hustles%20That'll%20Cover%20Your%20Holiday%20Spending"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Seasonal%20Side%20Hustles%20That%27ll%20Cover%20Your%20Holiday%20Spending.jpg" alt="8 Seasonal Side Hustles That'll Cover Your Holiday Spending" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-seasonal-side-hustles-thatll-cover-your-holiday-spending">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-get-audited-how-your-side-gig-needs-to-handle-taxes">Don&#039;t Get Audited! How Your Side Gig Needs to Handle Taxes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car">7 Ways to Earn Extra Money With Your Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-simple-plan-for-saving-up-a-2000-fun-fund">A Simple Plan for Saving Up a $2000 Fun Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-68-best-ways-to-make-money-that-are-actually-fun">Flashback Friday: 68 Best Ways to Make Money That Are Actually Fun</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year">8 Reasons to Skip the Big Holiday Dinner This Year</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Job Hunting Christmas extra paycheck Holidays lyft part time jobs pet sitter santa seasonal jobs side hustles side jobs Thanksgiving Uber Mon, 06 Nov 2017 09:00:07 +0000 Paul Michael 2045390 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Ways to Actually Relax Over the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/cozy_christmas_at_home.jpg" alt="Cozy Christmas at home" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's almost that time of year again. You know, the most wonderful time of year. Or, if you're like me, the time when you feel like you run a marathon for months and never, ever stop.</p> <p>During the holiday season, it's especially important to find a way to take a breather. After all, you want to remember these days as some of the best, right? And what better way to do that than to cut the crazy, and find a way to really relax and enjoy yourself?</p> <h2>1. Take a breath</h2> <p>No, you don't have to take up meditation. But even stopping for two or three breaths when you start to feel stressed can help you recenter. I know someone who goes so far as to set alarms on her exercise tracker every two or three hours. When her wrist buzzes, she finds a place where she can take a few deep breaths. She swears it makes her healthier and happier. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-stay-calm-in-stressful-moments?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Ways to Stay Calm in Stressful Moments</a>)</p> <h2>2. Plan fewer activities</h2> <p>There are a million things to do over the holiday season. If you try to do them all, though, you'll discover that they stop being fun and become stressful instead. So pick a few things, maybe the ones you're most excited about or the ones you think your family will love, and do only those. If you want to do something more, there's always next year. Limiting the number of things you commit to will reduce your stress.</p> <h2>3. Schedule intimate gatherings</h2> <p>When you really want to talk to someone, there's no better way to achieve that than to plan a small, intimate holiday get-together, rather than a huge bustling party. Have a few interesting people over, offer some simple refreshments, and really get to know the people in your life. It's so much less stressful than planning a huge party! You can even do this several times, with different people, if you have a lot of friends you'd like to entertain this season.</p> <h2>4. Play music</h2> <p>Whether you love traditional holiday music or not, it's likely you can find something that is both in the holiday spirit and that reduces your stress levels. You may not want to keep it on all the time, but finding a way to incorporate holiday music into your daily life should not only get you a little more into the holiday spirit, but can also help you feel more relaxed and excited about the season. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-choose-the-best-streaming-music-service-for-you?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Choose the Best Streaming Music Service for You</a>)</p> <h2>5. Shop early</h2> <p>Buying your holiday gifts late can be incredibly stressful. The lines are longer, there are more people to contend with, and popular gifts can be harder to find. While it takes a bit of planning and some storage space, shopping early helps you avoid all of these hectic moments. Even if you love the rush of last-minute holiday gift-buying, you can plan your lists now and buy some items that might be impossible to find later. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-you-should-start-your-holiday-shopping-now?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Reasons You Should Start Your Holiday Shopping Now</a>)</p> <h2>6. Take some time off</h2> <p>Depending on your job, taking time off right around the holidays can be almost impossible. But if you have the vacation days, it's worth taking a few sometime during the season to make time to chill. If nothing else, use a couple of vacation days just to get stuff done. That way, you don't have to fit everything in around work and the rest of your hectic holiday schedule.</p> <h2>7. Make time to exercise</h2> <p>When you're running around like crazy, fitting in exercise can feel like just one more difficult thing you have to do. Since exercise reduces stress, though, it may be one of the most important things that you do this holiday season. You don't have to find time for a killer gym workout, either. A 20-30 minute walk, even on a treadmill, will do you good. Make exercise a habit during the holidays, and beat some of the stress that comes with the season.</p> <h2>8. Get outside</h2> <p>Unfortunately, one of the most stressful times of the year goes hand in hand with one of the darkest times of the year. This is important because time spent out in natural light helps the body produce vitamin D, which is key to helping us deal with stress. Whenever possible, spend a few minutes each day outside. If you can't stand the cold, take some vitamin D supplements so your body has what it needs to be able to battle stress.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%2520Ways%2520to%2520Actually%2520Relax%2520Over%2520the%2520Holidays.jpg&amp;description=8%20Ways%20to%20Actually%20Relax%20Over%20the%20Holidays"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Ways%20to%20Actually%20Relax%20Over%20the%20Holidays.jpg" alt="8 Ways to Actually Relax Over the Holidays" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stuck-at-the-airport-relax-with-these-14-easy-self-care-tricks">Stuck at the Airport? Relax With These 14 Easy Self-Care Tricks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-anxiety-from-ruining-your-budget">5 Ways to Keep Anxiety From Ruining Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/treat-yourself-with-these-7-free-self-care-routines">Treat Yourself With These 7 Free Self-Care Routines</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-74-easy-ways-to-reduce-stress">Flashback Friday: 74 Easy Ways to Reduce Stress</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-stay-calm-in-stressful-moments">7 Ways to Stay Calm in Stressful Moments</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Lifestyle Christmas get enough sleep holiday travel Holidays mental health self-care stress stress-free Thanksgiving Thu, 02 Nov 2017 08:00:09 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 2039985 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: How to Save $300 by Christmas http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-how-to-save-300-by-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-how-to-save-300-by-christmas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_christmas_piggybank_175171692.jpg" alt="Woman saving money by Christmas" title="" 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 articles on how to save $300 by Christmas, simple ways to save on medical bills, and the best sites for streaming TV shows and movies.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="https://www.mightybargainhunter.com/how-to-save-for-christmas-and-more/">How to save for Christmas and more: 16+ tips</a> &mdash; These strategies will help you save $30 a week. Keep it up for 10 weeks and you'll have $300 by Christmas! [Mighty Bargain Hunter]</p> <p><a href="http://www.beatingbroke.com/4-simple-ways-to-save-medical-bills/">4 Simple Ways to Save: Medical Bills</a> &mdash; When someone in your family is feeling sick, call the doctor before going to the office. The doctor or a nurse may be able to help you over the phone, allowing you to save on the copay. [Beating Broke]</p> <p><a href="https://wellkeptwallet.com/best-sites-like-netflix-as-an-alternative-to-streaming-online/">21 Best Sites Like Netflix as an Alternative to Streaming Online</a> &mdash; Netflix is one of the most popular streaming services these days, but it's far from the only one. There are many free and paid alternatives that will give you more options for TV shows and movies. [Well Kept Wallet]</p> <p><a href="https://blog.cheapism.com/flu-shot-cost-cvs-walgreens-walmart/">Where to Get a Cheap Flu Shot in 2017: Walmart, Costco, and More</a> &mdash; If your insurance doesn't cover the flu shot, check out one of these pharmacies for low-cost vaccines. [Cheapism]</p> <p><a href="https://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Save-Money-Each-Month-44150081">5 Tips That Actually Saved Me Major Cash This Month</a> &mdash; Be smart about where you're going. Find things to do around your neighborhood or near transit lines so you can save money on transportation. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://commoncentsmom.com/2017/10/happy-halloween-budget/">How to Have a Happy Halloween on a Budget</a> &mdash; Before you head to the store, shop from the things you already have for items you can repurpose for costumes and decorations. [Common Cents Mom]</p> <p><a href="https://www.theorderexpert.com/how-to-have-a-more-productive-day/">How to Have a More Productive Day</a> &mdash; Set aside some time every so often to upgrade, replace, or repair your work tools. Your productivity can suffer greatly if your tools are not up for the task they're meant to do. [The Order Expert]</p> <p><a href="http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/2017/10/17/filing-an-insurance-claim/">How to Get What You Deserve When Filing an Insurance Claim</a> &mdash; When filing a claim, list everything you can think of, even the mundane stuff. [Get Rich Slowly]</p> <p><a href="https://www.savingfreak.com/how-to-market-rental-property/">How to Make Your Rental Property a Standout</a> &mdash; Invest in a professional photographer to give potential renters a stellar first impression of your property. [Saving Freak]</p> <p><a href="https://www.csmonitor.com/Science/Spacebound/2017/1012/As-an-asteroid-approaches-NASA-carries-out-a-cosmic-fire-drill">As an asteroid approaches, NASA carries out a cosmic fire drill</a> &mdash; NASA will take advantage of an asteroid's close flyby to test the International Asteroid Warning Network, Earth's warning network for incoming space rocks. [The Christian Science Monitor]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-how-to-save-300-by-christmas">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-to-monetize-your-unwanted-gifts">How to Get Rid of Your Unwanted Gifts and Make Money Too</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-80-holiday-treats-that-wont-bust-your-budget">Flashback Friday: 80 Holiday Treats That Won&#039;t Bust Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-reasons-to-last-minute-holiday-shop">9 Smart Reasons to Last-Minute Holiday Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-overpriced-holiday-gifts-you-should-skip">7 Overpriced Holiday Gifts You Should Skip</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living best money tips Christmas Wed, 18 Oct 2017 08:30:11 +0000 Amy Lu 2038343 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 52 Ways to Keep Your Finances Fit During the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-52-ways-to-keep-your-finances-fit-during-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-52-ways-to-keep-your-finances-fit-during-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/christmas_jar_coins_500639910.jpg" alt="Keeping finances fit during the holidays" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The holidays are coming, and with that comes a serious budgeting struggle. You want to get the right gifts, the right food, the right decorations, and you don't want to spend too much money on any of it. Many of us end up with a pile of debt at the end of the holiday season, but this year, don't let it happen to you.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/couple_christmas_shopping_51383450.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-money-moves-to-make-before-the-holiday-season-begins?ref=fbf" target="_blank">9 Smart Money Moves to Make Before the Holiday Season Begins</a> &mdash; The best way to get started is to tackle that worm as the early birds do and make a plan immediately. Set a budget, save money while you can, and go into the holiday season with a savvy strategy.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-money-moves-you-can-make-while-stuck-in-an-endless-tsa-line?ref=fbf" target="_blank">6 Money Moves You Can Make While Stuck in an Endless TSA Line</a> &mdash; Most likely, you'll travel during the holiday season to see family members and spread that holiday cheer. This means that you'll probably end up at the airport, facing delays and long security lines. These money moves are so easy, you can make them while you wait.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/happy_young_woman_depositing_money_into_her_piggy_bank.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays?ref=fbf" target="_blank">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a> &mdash; Another way to keep your money from becoming a mess is to tidy them up before the snow starts to fall. In addition to coming up with a holiday financial strategy, you should organize your bills, shred financial documents as needed, track receipts, and get a clear picture of the ways you currently spend money before you start spending more.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money?ref=fbf" target="_blank">How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About Money</a> &mdash; Take this opportunity to get the kids involved in your financial planning this season, as it will help them understand the value of a dollar and that everything comes at a price.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/christmas-gift-wrapping-515521261-small.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-festive-ways-to-make-extra-money-for-the-holidays?ref=fbf" target="_blank">16 Festive Ways to Make Extra Money for the Holidays</a> &mdash; The best way to keep your money neat this season is to bring in more of it to balance out your spending. If you have some free time and can take on a side hustle, you might end up breaking even by New Year's!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/winter-is-coming-make-these-6-money-moves-now?ref=fbf" target="_blank">Winter Is Coming: Make These 6 Money Moves Now</a> &mdash; With the arrival of Santa and spiked eggnog comes snow and necessary home care. You need to get your pipes, tires, and roof ready to weather the white fluffy stuff, so you can avoid any pricey winter surprises in the dead of chilly season.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-52-ways-to-keep-your-finances-fit-during-the-holidays">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-11"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money">How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-50-money-moves-you-need-to-make-when-big-changes-happen">Flashback Friday: 50 Money Moves You Need to Make When Big Changes Happen</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-52-money-mistakes-you-need-to-stop-making">Flashback Friday: 52 Money Mistakes You Need to Stop Making</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists">Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year">8 Reasons to Skip the Big Holiday Dinner This Year</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Budgeting budgeting tips Christmas fbf flashback friday Holidays money moves Thanksgiving Fri, 13 Oct 2017 08:30:10 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 2035918 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About Money http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/halloween_is_here.jpg" alt="Halloween is here" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>My kids love the holidays. They plan their Halloween costumes as early as March; they ask to help make pumpkin pie the moment there's even a hint of chill in the air; and they have Hanukkah wish lists going nearly year-round.</p> <p>My husband and I get a kick out of their enthusiasm. It helps us remember the holiday magic we felt as children. But in addition to being fun and meaningful traditions, holidays also offer parents the opportunity to teach their kids about money.</p> <p>Before this year's holiday season kicks into high gear, consider using the occasions to teach your kids the following lessons about managing money:</p> <h2>Halloween</h2> <p>Your kids' favorite candy-based holiday provides you with several ways to teach important money management skills.</p> <h3>Costume budgeting</h3> <p>Whether you are footing the bill for your child's costume or you are asking them to use their own money, start by setting a dollar limit on the amount they can spend and offer to help them shop around. These limits will help your child understand the trade-offs they will have to make to stay within a budget.</p> <p>For instance, your daughter might find that the Wonder Woman costume at the local party store would blow her budget &mdash; but she could save money by stenciling Diana Prince's WW logo on a red T-shirt she already owns and adding white star stickers to a pair of blue shorts or a blue skirt. Recognizing that she could spend either money or time is an important part of learning to budget. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-simple-and-cheap-halloween-costumes-for-kids?ref=seealso" target="_blank">20 Simple and Cheap Halloween Costumes for Kids</a>)</p> <h3>Candy negotiations</h3> <p>Not every candy in your child's trick-or-treat bag can be a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup or a Snickers. There's bound to be some candy corn, Good &amp; Plenty, or even just Dum Dums that your kids aren't particularly interested in. You can help them to learn the value of negotiation by fostering candy exchanges.</p> <p>After they've finished with trick-or-treating, encourage your kids to trade with each other. These candy swaps can help your kids figure out just how much they value coveted candy. Is another Mars Bar worth three Twizzlers? Just how many Tootsie Rolls are equivalent to a Blow Pop? This kind of negotiation can help your kids learn how to compromise and determine what they value.</p> <h2>Thanksgiving</h2> <p>Thanksgiving is a time for family, but it can also provide your kids with an excellent opportunity to learn about the importance of tracking your expenses.</p> <h3>Track spending</h3> <p>The average household spent $342 over Thanksgiving weekend in 2016, according to Statistic Brain. You can involve your kids in your Thanksgiving expenditures by asking them to keep a running tally of your spending for the holiday.</p> <p>Save your receipts from any Thanksgiving-related expenditures &mdash; everything from your purchase of pumpkin pie fixings, to the gas station fill-up on the way to Grandma's house, to the 75 percent off fitness tracker you bought for Aunt Sue on Black Friday. Hand over the receipts to your child so they can keep careful track of just how much Thanksgiving will cost you this year.</p> <p>Not only will this exercise in tracking your household spending help your kids to practice their math skills, but it will also help them see just how quickly expenses can add up.</p> <h2>Christmas and Hanukkah</h2> <p>Kids get understandably excited about the gift aspect of Christmas and Hanukkah, but these holidays are also a perfect opportunity to teach them how to manage their money.</p> <h3>Gift budgeting</h3> <p>It's so easy to go overboard when buying gifts for loved ones, and it's important for children to learn that you can give presents without breaking the bank. Even very young children can help you to create a list of everyone you want to give a present to. From there, decide on the amount of money you can afford to spend per person. Older children who will be buying their own presents for family can make this decision themselves, with your help. Younger kids can help by writing down the dollar amount you can spend.</p> <p>You can then start brainstorming gift possibilities. Have your kids comparison shop for prices or figure out alternatives if certain gifts aren't in the budget. This exercise can help your kids understand that generosity and spending too much aren't synonymous.</p> <h3>Wants and needs</h3> <p>Holidays can often be a time of excess, which means it can be tough for kids to recognize the difference between their wants and their needs. One way parents can help their kids learn those differences is to institute the Four Gift Rule. With this rule, each child receives:</p> <ol style="margin-left: 40px;"> <li> <p>Something they want.</p> </li> <li> <p>Something they need.</p> </li> <li> <p>Something to wear.</p> </li> <li> <p>Something to read.</p> </li> </ol> <p>Limiting your children's wish lists to four distinct categories helps your kids focus on the things that they truly need and the wants that they value most. You can make it clear to your kids that they can put more than one item in each category, but that they will only receive one present from each category.</p> <p>Not only will this system help save you money and time, but it will help your kids keep their gift expectations reasonable.</p> <h2>Holidays, with a side of money management</h2> <p>Enjoying the holiday season with your children is a perfect time to teach them some of the finer points of budgeting, negotiation, money management, and managing expectations.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Use%2520the%2520Holidays%2520to%2520Teach%2520Kids%2520About%2520Money.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Use%20the%20Holidays%20to%20Teach%20Kids%20About%20Money"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Use%20the%20Holidays%20to%20Teach%20Kids%20About%20Money.jpg" alt="How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About Money" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists">Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-family-money-matters-your-kids-dont-need-to-know">9 Family Money Matters Your Kids Don&#039;t Need to Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-old-holiday-traditions-we-cant-believe-ever-existed">8 Old Holiday Traditions We Can&#039;t Believe Ever Existed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-questions-to-answer-before-giving-your-kid-a-credit-card">4 Questions to Answer Before Giving Your Kid a Credit Card</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Family budgeting children Christmas gift giving Halloween hanukkah Holidays kids money lessons negotiating Thanksgiving tracking Mon, 09 Oct 2017 08:30:08 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2031775 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_young_woman_depositing_money_into_her_piggy_bank.jpg" alt="Happy young woman depositing money into her piggy bank" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Summer is over. This fall, fortify your finances to take the end of the year in stride. These helpful tips will get you back on track (and help you stay on track) budget-wise.</p> <h2>1. Start your holiday shopping now</h2> <p>Instead of making a mad rush for last-minute deals, spread out your gift buying over the course of the next couple months. Watch your local circulars and emails for discounts and promo codes, and strike while the proverbial iron seems hot.</p> <p>For instance, I just purchased several packs of Calvin Klein undies as a Christmas gift for my boo because I received an email for 25 percent off, plus I had an additional 15 percent off coupon with free shipping. Will there be steeper discounts in the near future? I can't be sure, but I had enough savings stacked up to feel like I made a smart choice, and now I can check one more gift off my list.</p> <h2>2. Max out retirement plan contributions</h2> <p>If you haven't already &mdash; and your budget can tolerate it &mdash; try to max out your 401(k) and 403(b) contributions at work. The employee contribution limit for 2017 is $18,000, and if you haven't reached that, it's time to come as close as you can. Those over age 50 can contribute an additional $6,000 as a catch-up contribution. If your employer offers matching funds, this should be a top financial priority, lest you fail to claim thousands of dollars in free money.</p> <h2>3. Take advantage of layaway</h2> <p>Layaway has had its up and downs over the years. What was once a common practice during the Great Depression started to fall out of favor by the 1980s thanks to the rising popularity of credit cards. Walmart all but left the service for dead in 2006 when it announced it would stop offering it, but by 2012, many retailers were back on the layaway bandwagon to make buying easier on customers in a tumultuous economy. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-layaway-still-worth-it?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Is Layaway Still Worth It?</a>)</p> <p>Personally, I loved layaway in my early 20s when I was on a shoestring budget. It allowed me to plan ahead and make scheduled payments so everything would be ready to go by Christmas. It's certainly a helpful buying tactic to look into if your finances are tight but you still want to participate in gift giving.</p> <h2>3. Use or lose flexible spending dollars</h2> <p>If you're lucky enough to have a flexible spending account through your employer, your FSA may need to be spent by year's end. Try to use up the balance so you're not losing cash. In doing so, you'll free up funds elsewhere that you don't have to use on medical needs.</p> <p>&quot;Since 2013, your employer may offer one of two carry-over options,&quot; says Ryan McPherson, founder of the financial planning firm Intelligent Worth in Atlanta, Georgia. &quot;One &mdash; roll up to $500 of unused funds into the following year or two, offer a two-and-a-half month grace period during which you may use your unspent FSA balance. Check with your employer, because offering one of these options is not a requirement. If you don't have either of these carry-over options and expect to have money left in your FSA, try to move appointments and medical/dental-related purchases (i.e., eye glasses or contacts) into 2017.&quot;</p> <p>If you're unsure where your FSA funds apply, IRS publication 502 offers guidance on what counts as a &quot;<a href="https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-prior/p502--2016.pdf" target="_blank">qualified medical expense</a>.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-spend-your-last-minute-health-care-fsa-funds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Ways to Spend Your Last-Minute Health Care FSA Funds</a>)</p> <h2>4. Make a gift list and check it twice</h2> <p>I use to get in this mindset &mdash; especially when I started making a little more money &mdash; that everybody needed a gift. That logic is false. Everybody doesn't need a gift for the sake of giving them a gift. Now, I make a list of the usual suspects with whom I exchange &mdash; immediate family, boyfriend, a few friends &mdash; but even then I give it a second glance to see where I can make cuts. Will I see this aunt or that buddy this year? If the answer is no, decide whether a gift is necessary at all to put some more money back in your pocket. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-gifts-that-wont-become-clutter?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Gifts That Won't Become Clutter</a>)</p> <h2>5. Revise your winter budget</h2> <p>Everything about winter costs more than other times of the year, and you should prepare by revising your budget to make sure all bases are covered.</p> <p>&quot;In addition to holiday expenses, as the weather gets colder, heating costs also increase,&quot; says Roslyn Lash, an accredited financial counselor. &quot;It's imperative that you also set some money aside for inclement weather expenses. Unfortunately, when ice/snow is the forecast, schools typically close, and this could mean paying someone to baby-sit the kiddos. It could also prevent you from going to work, which means lost revenue.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-big-winter-expenses-that-could-freeze-your-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Big Winter Expenses That Could Freeze Your Budget</a>)</p> <h2>6. Determine what's necessary for the holidays and cut back from there</h2> <p>I love all things holiday &mdash; the decorations, the parties, the gifts, the endless array of baked goods &mdash; and if I'm not participating in someone else's festivities, I'm hosting my own. Of course that can get expensive, so I take a one-year-on, one-year-off approach to the latter part of that equation. Two years ago I hosted a holiday party in my home, but last year I didn't. I bought more holiday decorations for the house last year, but this year I won't. This practice not only helps me save money, but it also lets me cycle through things that I need to get rid of in a timely manner (like half-full bottles of liquor, for instance) and cut down on overall holiday clutter. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/avoid-these-5-common-holiday-budget-pitfalls?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Avoid These 5 Common Holiday Budget Pitfalls</a>)</p> <h2>7. Get into a cash back state of mind</h2> <p>Upfront coupons and savings are great, but there's plenty more to be had on the back end if you know where to look. Apps like <a href="https://ibotta.com/r/jcsgjbv" target="_blank">Ibotta</a> and Fetch Rewards provide cash back on purchases made on preset items or at selected retailers. Last month I scored more than $50 cash back (which was on top of other savings I received on the front end) by shopping through Ibotta.</p> <p>If you're responsible at managing credit, now's also a great time to take advantage of a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash back credit card</a> on your day to day purchases. By using a cash back card on necessities like groceries or gas, you'll earn cash to bolster your budget. Just be sure to pay off your balance in full every month, or else this method isn't worth it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-your-credit-card-will-save-you-money-while-holiday-shopping?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Ways Your Credit Card Will Save You Money While Holiday Shopping</a>)</p> <h2>8. Rebid your insurance policies</h2> <p>You may be able to shave some money off your bills this fall by reviewing your insurance coverage.</p> <p>Michael Landsberg, CFP and founder of Landsberg Bennett Private Wealth Management in Punta Gorda, Florida, recommends rebidding your auto and home insurance policies to at least three independent agents (but not the online ones that are all owned by the same companies).</p> <p>&quot;Often times, this rebidding process puts hundreds if not thousands back in people's pockets right before the holidays,&quot; he explains. &quot;It's very easy. Just take your current policy declaration page and send that to an independent agent and let them do the work. The worst that can happen is you find out you've got a good program in place already.&quot;</p> <h2>9. Book travel before demand pricing kicks in</h2> <p>If you're traveling this fall or holiday season, book your mode of transportation and accommodations as soon as possible so you're not looking at ultra expensive rates at the last minute. Hotels and rental cars in particular go fast, and they're subject to on-demand pricing, which means your wallet could end up getting walloped if you're not shut out altogether. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-these-9-things-now-to-make-holiday-air-travel-easier?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Do These 9 Things Now to Make Holiday Air Travel Easier</a>)</p> <h2>10. Investigate a balance transfer</h2> <p>If you're carrying a high balance on a credit card, now is a great time to give yourself a credit card checkup.</p> <p>&quot;Explore what's out there,&quot; advises Han Chang, co-founder of InvestmentZen. &quot;Many lenders are beginning to offer deals now to get a jump on the holidays. Consolidating credit card debt via a balance transfer can be pretty enticing, especially with those 0 percent introductory APR offers, which usually last for six to 12 months. If you can find a good offer, you could potentially pay down a significant amount of debt before November and December.&quot;</p> <p>But nothing is ever free; offers like this often come with a one-time balance transfer fee ranging from 3 percent to 10 percent of the total balance transfer. That can really add up and, if you're not careful, completely negate any savings that 0 percent APR offers. Be sure to make your payments on time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-a-balance-transfer-offer-a-good-deal?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Is a Balance Transfer Offer a Good Deal?</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%2520Ways%2520to%2520Tidy%2520Up%2520Your%2520Finances%2520Before%2520the%2520Holidays.jpg&amp;description=10%20Ways%20to%20Tidy%20Up%20Your%20Finances%20Before%20the%20Holidays"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Ways%20to%20Tidy%20Up%20Your%20Finances%20Before%20the%20Holidays.jpg" alt="10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-reasons-to-last-minute-holiday-shop">9 Smart Reasons to Last-Minute Holiday Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists">Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season">8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-prepare-for-your-best-black-friday">11 Ways to Prepare for Your Best Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Frugal Living balance transfer budgeting cash back checkup Christmas gifts Holidays layaway planning savings shopping winter Wed, 04 Oct 2017 08:30:12 +0000 Mikey Rox 2030770 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Get Rid of Your Unwanted Gifts and Make Money Too http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-to-monetize-your-unwanted-gifts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/heres-how-to-monetize-your-unwanted-gifts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-502527550.jpg" alt="make money from unwanted gifts" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's already 2017, which means it's time to take inventory and clean up. Got a few unwanted or duplicate presents for the holidays? Here are five ways to make money on the gifts you don't want.</p> <h2>Sell Clothing on ThredUp</h2> <p>Need something to do with your &quot;ugly christmas sweater&quot; from the work holiday party, or the pjs that are four sizes too big? If you're saddled with some brand new clothes you don't want, resell them on ThredUp &mdash; a site dedicated to clothing recycling and reuse. Sign up and send a batch of your clothing with their provided kit, and they will send you payment based on what they deem the clothing to be worth. You can even estimate <a href="https://www.thredup.com/p/cleanout-payout-estimator" target="_blank">what you might earn</a>. Soon, you can make some scratch to spend toward that cute unicorn pj onesie you really wanted.</p> <h2>Sell Toys and Games on eBay</h2> <p>Some sites stay the same for a reason. When it comes to toys, games, and other collectibles, you just can't beat eBay. It's where folks looking for a specific item are shopping. If you're stuck with a gigantic Power Rangers toy your kids don't want, or a third copy of <em>Big Bang Theory</em> Monopoly, it's easy to post them with a &quot;Buy It Now&quot; and/or an &quot;Make an Offer&quot; option. eBay even makes it easy to fill out the product form, as half the fields can be auto-filled based on the product. Take a photo and you're good to go.</p> <h2>Sell Books on Amazon Marketplace</h2> <p>Turns out everyone in your life only knows one thing about you, because everyone got you a copy of the newest <em>Peanuts</em> collection. You should definitely push off your other copies at <a href="https://services.amazon.com/selling/benefits.htm" target="_blank">Amazon Marketplace</a>. When one shops for books on Amazon, they can look at the section reading (for example), &quot;5 used and new starting at $2.46.&quot; People buy tons of books there, as you can usually get a really good deal on a used, but &quot;like new&quot; copy. Group together a crop of books you don't need, then simply sign up for an Amazon Marketplace account as an individual selling fewer than 40 items per month, so that you only have to pay 99 cents per item and a few other fees.</p> <h2>Sell Antiques and Appliances on Craigslist</h2> <p>Good old Craigslist is always there for when you need to get rid of something fairly quickly. Got some majorly heavy and space-consuming gifts from family you can't use? Post an ad for that awkward antique floor lamp, the racing bike gathering dust, or that huge pizza oven that you'll never bake with on Craigslist. It's easy and everyone knows how it works. No setting up an elaborate account, and there's minimal upkeep. The buyer comes to you to pick up the bulky item and then it's out of your life.</p> <h2>Sell Household Items on OfferUp</h2> <p>For miscellaneous presents from friends and family that you know will only gather dust, sell them while they're still new on <a href="https://offerupnow.com/howitworks/" target="_blank">OfferUp</a> for extra money. OfferUp attempts to make the Craigslist style of selling accessible and easy for the mobile phone generation. Snap a photo of the item, add details, and post. You can chat instantly with buyers within the app, which is especially helpful for those who dread getting emails and texts from random strangers on Craigslist.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-to-monetize-your-unwanted-gifts">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-gifts-that-wont-become-clutter">9 Gifts That Won&#039;t Become Clutter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-simple-holiday-budget-anyone-can-follow">The Simple Holiday Budget Anyone Can Follow</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-reasons-to-last-minute-holiday-shop">9 Smart Reasons to Last-Minute Holiday Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/regifting-a-simple-how-to-guide">Regifting: A Simple How-To Guide</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists">Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Shopping Christmas Christmas gifts exchange gifts gifts Holidays Internet presents regift regifting resale sell your stuff Fri, 06 Jan 2017 10:00:10 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1869197 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: 10 Things That Are Cheaper After Christmas http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-10-things-that-are-cheaper-after-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-10-things-that-are-cheaper-after-christmas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_shopping_holidays_499482866.jpg" alt="Women buying things that are cheaper after Christmas" title="" 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 articles on things that are cheaper after Christmas, surprising uses for shampoo, and what to look for in an Airbnb listing.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.dontpayfull.com/blog/things-you-can-buy-cheaper-after-christmas">10 Things You Can Buy Cheaper After Christmas</a> &mdash; Gift sets go on sale after Christmas, so stock up if you want some nice toiletries or beauty products to use year round. [Don't Pay Full]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyaware.co.uk/2016/12/29-surprising-uses-for-shampoo/">29 Surprising Uses for Shampoo</a> &mdash; Rub a bit of shampoo onto a stiff zipper to get it slide smoothly again. [Money Aware]</p> <p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/Saving-Money/2016/1218/What-to-look-for-in-an-Airbnb-listing-before-booking">What to look for in an Airbnb listing before booking</a> &mdash; Listings should include what sleeping arrangements are available: how many beds and cots, the sizes of the beds, and if there are extra charges for extra guests.&nbsp; [The Monitor]</p> <p><a href="http://www.shebudgets.com/lifestyle/technology/10-ways-to-use-your-phone-to-pay-for-stuff/71814">10 Ways To Use Your Phone To Pay For Stuff</a> &mdash; You can get through the checkout line faster if you have a store's loyalty card linked through the store's app. [SheBudgets]</p> <p><a href="https://www.savingfreak.com/how-to-reduce-food-waste/">17 Ideas for How to Reduce Food Waste</a> &mdash; Coat your measuring cup or spoon with a&nbsp; little bit of oil so that sticky substances like honey slide right off. [Saving Freak]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="https://www.dailyworth.com/posts/4401-5-things-to-consider-when-donating-to-charities-and-nonprofits">5 Things to Consider in Your Year-End Giving</a> &mdash; If you want to donate money, consider small- and medium-sized organizations in your area that could really use the help. [Daily Worth]</p> <p><a href="http://www.currentoncurrency.com/avoid-weekend-money-traps/">How to Avoid Weekend Money Traps</a> &mdash; Limit how often you go to ticketed events like concerts and sports games. Save your money for the really special outings that you wouldn't want to miss. [Current on Currency]</p> <p><a href="http://www.dumblittleman.com/build-positive-habits/">How to Build Positive Habits</a> &mdash; Identify possible obstacles that would hinder you from developing a positive habit and figure out ways to deal with them. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Can-I-More-Organized-42854117">5 Things Organized People Do Every Day</a> &mdash; Organized people maintain a calendar or planner to note upcoming events. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://blog.shoplet.com/environment/eco-friendly-gift-wrap-alternatives-to-be-merry-about/">Eco Friendly Gift Wrap Alternatives to be Merry About</a> &mdash; Use old maps &mdash; from road maps to theme park maps &mdash; to give your gifts a well-traveled feel! [Shoplet]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-10-things-that-are-cheaper-after-christmas">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy">Save on Christmas Shopping With This Clever Gift Card Strategy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-frugal-gifts-for-the-person-who-needs-a-nap">9 Frugal Gifts for the Person Who Needs a Nap</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-to-monetize-your-unwanted-gifts">How to Get Rid of Your Unwanted Gifts and Make Money Too</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-simple-holiday-budget-anyone-can-follow">The Simple Holiday Budget Anyone Can Follow</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-ready-for-christmas-7-things-you-should-do-today">Get Ready for Christmas: 7 Things You Should Do Today</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping best money tips Christmas Thu, 22 Dec 2016 10:30:32 +0000 Amy Lu 1858986 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Frugal Ways to Protect Your Home During the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/7-frugal-ways-to-protect-your-home-during-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-frugal-ways-to-protect-your-home-during-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-137806346.jpg" alt="protect your home during holiday travel" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Headed out of town for the holidays? Don't get McCallistered! Keep the Harrys and Marvs at bay with these cheap ways to protect your home while you're away.</p> <h2>1. Ask a Friend or Neighbor to Watch the House</h2> <p>If you have the good fortune of having someone close to you who's sticking around for the holidays, it won't hurt to ask if they'd mind keeping an eye on your property &mdash; maybe even house sit. Your house sitter can collect the mail &mdash; as mail and newspaper buildup is a telltale sign that a house is unoccupied &mdash; and make sure trash and recycling is put out if you're departing on an off day.</p> <p>The sitter's coming and going will keep activity at your home consistent to deter would-be burglars. Make sure it's convenient for whomever you ask (if it's out of the way, you should expect to pay), and stock the fridge with the sitter's favorite foods and drinks to make the stay more comfortable and enjoyable.</p> <h2>2. Leave the Lights On</h2> <p>Even if I'm not leaving town for an extended period of time, I like to keep my dining room light or the TV in my living room on to create the illusion that someone is always home &mdash; and that's not a bad idea, according to Alyse Ainsworth, safety and security expert at ASecureLife.com.</p> <p>&quot;If your home looks like there are people in it, you'll be less likely to be robbed,&quot; she says. &quot;Consider installing motion light sensors or even a timer for your exterior and interior lights. You can also purchase timers that can be controlled with a mobile app. You can turn your lights on and off strategically, making it harder for burglars to keep track of patterns.&quot;</p> <p>Yes, I do realize that keeping the lights on nonstop for days on end will hike up that month's bill, but it's only one room, and it's cheaper than getting robbed.</p> <h2>3. Stop Announcing Your Plans on Social Media</h2> <p>I get it &mdash; you want to share your vacation plans with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, but in doing so, you may be giving someone all the details they need to clean you out during your daiquiri fest on the beach. If you'd like to share your vacation photos, do it after the trip is over when you're safe at home. You'll enjoy more of your vacay when you're<em> present</em> anyway; two for one.</p> <h2>4. Lock Up Every Entrance</h2> <p>Before you leave your house for good, do one last check that all points of entry are locked and secure. &quot;Robbers will see an unlocked door as an invitation to come in and take whatever they want,&quot; Ainsworth says. But don't forget the garage or windows, either. Burglars aren't particularly picky about how they get into your house, and they'll exhaust all their options before they give up if you've got what they want inside.</p> <h2>5. Don't Leave a Paper Trail</h2> <p>Thieves don't just want your tangible things. These days, identity theft is perhaps more valuable than any material item burglars will lift from your home, and it's wise to keep that in mind when tossing receipts and other financial and identifying documents in the trash and recycling bins.</p> <p>&quot;With the growing concern of identity theft, residents should also be mindful of what they're throwing out, being sure to utilize a paper shredder for documents with sensitive, personal information,&quot; advises Lynn Edmonson, regional manager of a property management firm in Florida. &quot;Placing un-shredded items in the trash not only increases your odds of identity theft, but it is also a method for burglars to find out whether or not a home is worth the effort of being burglarized.&quot;</p> <h2>6. Call Your Local Authorities For a Safety Check</h2> <p>Identity theft expert Robert Siciliano offers a great tip most people probably don't think of: Call the police <em>before</em> your house is robbed. Local law enforcement can provide basic tips on how to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/diy-home-defense-10-ways-to-protect-your-home-from-burglars" target="_blank">secure your home</a> before a trip, and they also can tell you what's trending in neighborhood crime &mdash; like bike or tool theft from a shed, for instance, or if home break-ins are on the rise and what the burglars are typically looking for. He also suggests looking for community programs in your area where law enforcement specialists are available to inspect properties and provide an assessment on how to fortify your home better.</p> <h2>7. Get a Dog &mdash; Or At Least a &quot;Beware of Dog&quot; Sign</h2> <p>Dogs are great protectors of your property &mdash; even those little guys whose barks are worse than their bites, because sometimes all it takes to deter a burglar is fear of having his limbs gnawed off. If you don't like the idea of pet parenthood, however, at least take a trip to Home Depot to pick up a &quot;Beware of Dog&quot; sign to make thieves think you've got a snarling canine on the premises. Siciliano details how to make the setup look even more authentic.</p> <p>&quot;Buy the biggest dog food bowl possible &mdash; one bowl for the front porch and one for the back,&quot; he says. &quot;Writing &quot;Killer&quot; on the bowl will give a burglar the impression that you have a big and vicious dog. You can even buy a barking dog alarm.&quot;</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-frugal-ways-to-protect-your-home-during-the-holidays&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%20Frugal%20Ways%20to%20Protect%20Your%20Home%20During%20the%20Holidays.jpg&amp;description=7%20Frugal%20Ways%20to%20Protect%20Your%20Home%20During%20the%20Holidays" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Frugal%20Ways%20to%20Protect%20Your%20Home%20During%20the%20Holidays.jpg" alt="7 Frugal Ways to Protect Your Home During the Holidays" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-frugal-ways-to-protect-your-home-during-the-holidays">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-flying-during-the-holidays">The Ultimate Guide to Flying During the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/avoid-these-6-common-mistakes-when-moving-across-the-country">Avoid These 6 Common Mistakes When Moving Across the Country</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-spend-less-on-last-minute-holiday-travel">How to Spend Less On Last-Minute Holiday Travel</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets">10 Ways to Get Free (or Almost Free) Airline Tickets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-old-holiday-traditions-we-cant-believe-ever-existed">8 Old Holiday Traditions We Can&#039;t Believe Ever Existed</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Travel Christmas holiday travel home protection home security surveillance travel Tue, 20 Dec 2016 11:30:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 1858110 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Frugal Gifts for the Person Who Needs a Nap http://www.wisebread.com/9-frugal-gifts-for-the-person-who-needs-a-nap <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-frugal-gifts-for-the-person-who-needs-a-nap" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-535110735.jpg" alt="these are the perfect gifts for nap lovers" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Is anyone on your gift list cranky or stressed-out? Let's face it, this year has been pretty tiring. Maybe they need a nap. Heck, we all could probably use one.</p> <p>Napping can help you recharge, zap stress, and boost your mood. Who doesn't need that, especially during the holiday season? Let's encourage napping, and enjoy the benefits. Here are nine items that will make someone sleepy just by looking at them.</p> <h2>1. Cozy Blanket</h2> <p>I bought a super-soft <a href="http://amzn.to/2hM3Lq2" target="_blank">fleece throw</a> for my husband, and when I'm not stealing it, he's using it to nap. Tossing one over a chair looks homey.</p> <h2>2. Sleepy Tea</h2> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2hM7u6X" target="_blank">Chamomile tea</a> is known for making people sleepy. According to the science, &quot;<a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2995283/" target="_blank">Sedative effects may be due to the flavonoid</a>, apigenin, that binds to benzodiazepine receptors in the brain.&quot; Or, it could just be the relaxing ritual of making a cup of tea that makes the eyelids heavy.</p> <h2>3. Eye Mask</h2> <p>For the light sleeper in your life, consider getting them an <a href="http://amzn.to/2gH5vET" target="_blank">eye mask</a>. The added darkness can keep that pesky sun from ruining a napping mood.</p> <h2>4. Nap-on-the-Go Accessories</h2> <p>Slightly germaphobic, I don't like using the blankets or pillows provided by the airlines. Who touched that? Ewww. So if you know a frequent traveler who feels the same way, consider this <a href="http://amzn.to/2hMbBQC" target="_blank">handy blanket and pillow combo</a>, complete with handy carrying strap.</p> <h2>5. White Noise Machine</h2> <p>We took our pediatrician's advice and did not stop doing chores while baby napped. Now the kid can sleep through <em>anything. </em>&quot;White noise&quot; is simply a combination of different sounds and frequencies. But no need to run the vacuum cleaner &mdash; just flip the switch on one of these <a href="http://amzn.to/2gzrfhk" target="_blank">white noise machines</a>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-a-50-year-old-gadget-may-be-the-best-cure-for-insomnia?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Why a 50 Year Old Gadget May Be the Best Cure for Insomnia</a>)</p> <h2>6. Hot Water Bottle</h2> <p>To take the chill off, there is just something about a <a href="http://amzn.to/2hM4XtA" target="_blank">hot-water bottle.</a> The product, patented in 1903, is the epitome of low-tech. It's also really nice to have one of these comforting bottles around when you don't feel well. Just add hot water and snooze.</p> <h2>7. A Little Lavender</h2> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gH30T0" target="_blank">Lavender</a> may be just thing thing to help you rest, as it has been <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22612017" target="_blank">shown to reduce heart rate and blood pressure</a>. Spray a little spritz and see if it is sleep-inducing. If nothing else, it smells wonderful.</p> <h2>8. Fan</h2> <p>A <a href="http://amzn.to/2hMasbx" target="_blank">room fan</a> offers the combination of cooling the room &mdash; which <a href="http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/07/17/lets-cool-it-in-the-bedroom/?_r=0" target="_blank">signals the body that it is time to sleep</a> &mdash; plus a little white noise. I cannot sleep at night without my fan running. Any seasoned napper would love this extra snooze-boost.</p> <h2>9. Yoga Tunes</h2> <p>I'll admit that I have embarrassed myself by falling asleep in yoga class on, um, more than one occasion. Oh, well. Maybe the relaxing <a href="http://amzn.to/2hrZoUz" target="_blank">yoga music</a> will help your favorite napper, too.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-frugal-gifts-for-the-person-who-needs-a-nap">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know">Flashback Friday: 160 Gift Ideas for Everyone You Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-gift-guide-gifts-that-save-money">25 Gifts That Save Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-reasons-to-last-minute-holiday-shop">9 Smart Reasons to Last-Minute Holiday Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-you-should-start-your-holiday-shopping-now">10 Reasons You Should Start Your Holiday Shopping Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-unique-holiday-gifts-for-teachers-that-theyll-actually-like">15 Unique Holiday Gifts for Teachers That They&#039;ll Actually Like</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Shopping Christmas gift guide gift ideas holiday shopping nap need a nap shopping hacks sleep Fri, 16 Dec 2016 11:30:08 +0000 Marla Walters 1855410 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 80 Holiday Treats That Won't Bust Your Budget http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-80-holiday-treats-that-wont-bust-your-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-80-holiday-treats-that-wont-bust-your-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/snowman_hot_chocolate_497277722.jpg" alt="Finding holiday treats that won&#039;t bust your budget" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Holiday beverages and baked goods are the best treats of all. They're warm and hearty, and extra sweet with the flavors of the season. While the price of ingredients can add up quickly, there's no need to spend all your money on said treats. Here are 80 holiday goodies that won't bust your budget.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/holiday_punch_000076603497.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-cheap-and-delicious-punch-recipes-for-holiday-parties?ref=fbf">15 Cheap and Delicious Punch Recipes for Holiday Parties</a> &mdash; This is peak holiday party time, so punch bowls around the world are full to the brim and ready to be drained. But you don't need pricey syrups, liquors, and pressed juices to make a yummy drink. Just use any of these cheap recipes!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-savory-holiday-food-gifts?ref=fbf">7 Savory Food Gifts</a> &mdash; Since we've all been gobbling up candy and baked goods since Halloween, we might all need a break from the sweetness. These savory food gifts are just as delicious, but won't give you any instant cavities.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/270433978_851e50828b_z.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eat-your-garbage-turn-your-trash-into-delicious-holiday-food?ref=fbf">Eat Your Garbage! Turn Your Trash Into Delicious Holiday Food</a> &mdash; Ready to cook up some holiday meals? Shop your trash can! No, seriously. The food you always throw away might contain the key ingredients you need to make the perfect Christmas dish. Give it a go!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-unique-holiday-gifts-you-can-bake?ref=fbf">15 Delicious Gifts You Can Bake</a> &mdash; DIY holiday gifts are not only cheap, but they're also wonderfully personal. So when you can save money and give someone an edible gift they'll truly enjoy, it's a win-win for everyone.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/christmas_baked_goods_77270193.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/start-now-you-can-make-these-23-delicious-holiday-gifts?ref=fbf">Start Now: You Can Make These 23 Delicious Holiday Gifts</a> &mdash; There's still time to make many of these delicious gifts! Just grab your list, check it twice, and get cookin'.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-easy-delicious-and-homemade-holiday-gifts?ref=fbf">16 Easy, Delicious and Homemade Holiday Gifts</a> &mdash; I'm not inclined to cook or bake anything unless the recipe has &quot;Easy&quot; in the name. For those of you who can relate, these scrumptious holiday treats are right up your alley!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-80-holiday-treats-that-wont-bust-your-budget">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-62-creative-uses-for-your-favorite-condiments">Flashback Friday: 62 Creative Uses for Your Favorite Condiments</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-84-reasons-to-be-done-with-summer-and-get-excited-for-fall">Flashback Friday: 84 Reasons to Be Done With Summer and Get Excited for Fall</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-47-brilliant-ways-to-save-money-on-dinner">Flashback Friday: 47 Brilliant Ways to Save Money on Dinner</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-63-delicious-ways-to-enjoy-leftovers">Flashback Friday: 63 Delicious Ways to Enjoy Leftovers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know">Flashback Friday: 160 Gift Ideas for Everyone You Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Food and Drink Christmas christmas food fbf flashback friday food and drink frugal living holiday food holiday treats recipes snacks Fri, 16 Dec 2016 11:00:16 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1855467 at http://www.wisebread.com