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Cheap Valentine's Day Ideas

holidays saving Jan 13, 2020

It's not difficult to come up with cheap Valentine's Day ideas while still making your celebration special. Valentine's Day is a time to show others that you care by giving thoughtful gifts from the heart.

Many commercially-available gift ideas can be expensive, putting people off from being able to buy the gifts they want for this special occasion. Fortunately, there are a variety of ways to save money on meaningful Valentine’s Day gifts. 

Here are five tips to keep your Valentine's Day within your budget:

Spend quality time together.

Most things that you and your loved one can do on  Valentine's Day can be relatively inexpensive. Rather than going out for a night on the town, consider a quiet homemade dinner at home and a rented movie. Sometimes low-key Valentine's Day celebrations are the most romantic and memorable. Listen to music, talk to one another about your dreams, and just enjoy each other’s company. Good conversation and company are free.

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Couponing for Beginners

budgeting saving Jan 08, 2020

Most people only dabble in coupon usage. They might check out the circulars in their Sunday paper, clip one or two items that look good, and probably forget to use them when they’re at the checkout stand.

Couponing is a well-planned method of shopping and saving, so you’re going to get a guide on how to achieve significant financial results from your efforts! It can be enjoyable once you get the hang of it, each trip to the grocery store becoming somewhat of a challenge you engage in.

Not everything you see on the Extreme Couponing show is real, so before you think that from now on, all of your groceries will be 100% free, think again. For instance, Frys caught heat from the public when they allowed for special coupon doubling that the public didn’t get – it was for promotional purposes just for the show’s taping.

But still, that doesn’t mean that with some smart planning, you can’t get some incredibly good deals that will save you plenty of...

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How an Organized Pantry Can Help You Save on Groceries

budgeting saving Jan 06, 2020

Have you participated in a pantry challenge? A pantry challenge is an attempt to spend as little money as possible on groceries and to eat what you already have in your home. I've seen a lot of people sharing their experiences on social media with some going as much as a month without purchasing groceries. Are you regularly using the food stored in your pantry? If not, why not? Is it a lack of organization? Getting organized can actually help you save on groceries.

Organize Your Pantry to Save on Groceries

One of the areas that families have a lot of control over their budget is food costs. Your mortgage is set in stone, there are few opportunities to reduce your utility bills, but your food bill is well under your control. One of the best ways to minimize your food bill is by keeping an organized pantry. Being able to easily see what’s in your pantry and keep it well-stocked makes meal prep easier and reduces or eliminates the need for spur of the moment take-out. 

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Finding An Accountability Partner

money mindset Jan 01, 2020

When you’re trying to reach a goal, it’s so important to make sure that you have someone available to help cheer you on. Accomplishing goals is so much easier when you have friends and family who can support you and provide direction to your life. The best accountability partners are the ones who will be there to not only support you during the hard times but also celebrate with you when everything is going great. 

Look Inside Your Home 

The people who are closest to you can make the best accountability partners. If you want to accomplish a goal that is very close to your personal finances, sometimes working with someone in your own home will help you reach your goals more easily. Look to your spouse as someone who can be a great accountability partner. Before doing this, make sure that you both are in it to accomplish this goal! 

Find Like-Minded People

When you’re finding an accountability partner, it will be hard for you to get someone who is...

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Stop Living Paycheck-to-Paycheck - Step 1

budgeting saving Jan 01, 2020

Most Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck so if you are, you’re in good company. Some studies report as many as 75% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck. The majority of people cannot deal with a $400 emergency expense without borrowing money. What’s worse is that according to CNBC.com, less than 30% of Americans has at least six months of living expenses saved. All these facts are to let you know that you’re not alone.

While most people live paycheck-to-paycheck, it doesn’t have to be that way. You can break the cycle once you identify the problem, set a budget, and learn how to spend less. It’s all about living within your means, while also identifying the things that will make your life a little bit easier and happier without a significant financial impact.

Related post: Financial Resolutions for the New Year

Figure Out Why You're Living Paycheck-to-Paycheck

The very first thing to do to fix the problem is to identify...

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Financial Resolutions for the New Year

budgeting saving Dec 30, 2019

Are you making financial resolutions for the new year?

I'll be honest. As you begin to establish new financial habits, staying on track financially will feel hard at first. However, if your goals are important enough and you believe that you can stick to a budget, saving money, and living the way you want and need to live, you’ll be able to do it, and it’ll feel great — even fun.

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Financial Resolutions - 10 Tips for Staying on Track 

Set Clear Financial Resolutions

The most important thing to remember about staying on track is to start with realistic financial resolutions. After all, you cannot live in a mansion if you don’t make that kind of money. Even if your goals are modest due to a modest income, if you set your financial resolutions realistically then you can stilll reach them.

Automate Bill Payment & Savings

Late payment fees can add up very quickly and throw you off course. When you pay even one bill late, the interest rate on your other...

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50 Free Family Activities to do this Winter

No matter where you live, it's easy to get stuck in a rut during the winter months. Your family may be tired of doing the same things over every single winter. You can break out of the bore and start having fun all without spending a dime! 

Check out the following 50 ideas for free family fun this winter:

  • Build a snowman - Bundle the kids up, grab some fun accessories, and build a snowman together.
  • Go sledding - Even if you don't have sleds for the kids, everything from trash can lids to pizza pans make great makeshift sleds! You can also likely borrow one from a neighbor, friend, or family member.
  • Go ice skating - If you don't have your own equipment, you may need to rent skates for a nominal fee.

  • Go on a winter hike - Even when it's cold outside, we still have some beautiful, sunny days. Put on your snow boots and take the kids for a hike.
  • Decorate your Christmas tree - This fun and free family activity will get you in the spirit. You can...
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Creating a Household Budget for 2020

budgeting saving Dec 18, 2019

There are so many benefits to creating a household budget. From having a handle on your finances to always knowing what kind of spending abilities you have, you’ll quickly find that a budget can make your life easier. While it may seem like a lot of work when you’re setting it up, they are worth it! Are you thinking of creating a budget for 2020? Here’s how to do it! 

Set Up the Framework for Creating a Household Budget

The hardest part of creating your household budget is setting a framework for the budget. By doing this, you’ll always have a template that you can fill in. Many people choose to use a spreadsheet to keep track of their income and expenses while others prefer the more traditional approach of using a notebook or calendar. No matter which method you prefer, you can get prepared to fill in your budget with specifics by setting up a solid template. 

As your making your budget, consider the future. You’ll likely...

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Planning a Staycation for Winter Break?

family activities saving Dec 16, 2019

Looking for staycation ideas for your family? Even though most people think of summer break as the best time to have fun with friends and family, winter break can still be a great time to bond and enjoy your time together. With lower prices on fun activities and the kids home from school, it’s the perfect time to have a winter staycation!

Related post: How to Decorate for Christmas on a Dime

15 Staycation Ideas for Families

1. Involve the kids in planning and preparing a family meal.

Look through some cookbooks and create a grocery list together. Head to the score to get everything you need and then let the kids do most of the work preparing the meal. You can also get your friends involved! Having a party with all your besties is a great way to connect and get out of the slump that can sometimes happen during the winter break.

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2. Have a movie marathon. 

With snowy roads and freezing temps, you don't have to go anywhere to have a fun time while you're on your...

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How to Stay On Budget Over Winter Vacation

With the kids home from school and plenty of fun things to do throughout the season, it’s challenging to stick to a budget during the winter vacation. Armed with the right tips, you can help yourself save money by staying on budget during the winter vacation! 

Winter vacation is not only expensive, but it can also be draining emotionally and mentally. It’s important to stay engaged and continue enriching your life no matter how low the temperatures dip!  

Stick to a Budget by Enjoying Free Activities 

Many places have free activities you can do during the winter months. From driving around looking at Christmas lights to participating in a Polar Plunge, you can try so many fun activities that are winter-friendly. Get your kids involved in free activities and keep them happy throughout the entire (YES!) winter vacation!  

To find free activities that will help you stick to your budget, check community social media pages, bulletin boards, and...

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