It's easy to spend a small fortune on decorations for holidays. However, between Halloween costumes and pumpkins, going all out on decorations might be outside your budget. You can still have fun without spending a lot. One of my favorites to make is a homemade scarecrow.
I think the scarecrow has got to be the most common DIY Halloween Decoration. I've been making them since I was a kid. AND, it's a great way to get the kids to rake and think it's fun. Not only that, you can do it with materials lying around your house.
There are lots of different versions of scarecrows. Encourage your kids to get creative with the materials. Here's one version.
Related post: 50 Ideas for Free Family Fun This Fall
My kids love Halloween. More than the candy, they thrive on having the opportunity to wear their “dress-up” clothes out of the home. There’s nothing quite like pretending to be someone you idolize. Unfortunately, the budget doesn’t always accommodate the expensive costumes they’d prefer, which is why I’m always searching for new, inexpensive ideas. A single post on Facebook netted a bunch, so I thought I’d share a few with you.
If you have a pink shirt (and possibly pink pants as well) this is an easy costume to put together. Just attach the bottom of a shoe to the top of your head and you are immediately transformed into the gum stuck to the bottom of a shoe. While your costume will be more identifiable with pink “gum”, you may want to mix it up and go as a wintergreen version.
Have an old white sheet lying around? Place it over the head, cut two holes for eyes and ta-da! You are a ghost....
The very first personal finance book that I ever read was David Bach's Smart Women Finish Rich. I was in my early 20's at the time, and it was the financial education I never got in school on how to improve your finances. It opened my eyes to a lot of things - about how spending is a reflection of our values, the power of saving consistently over time, and how to avoid common financial mistakes.
Over the years, I have read some of David Bach's other books as well, so I was looking forward to the release of his latest, The Latte Factor.
This book is different from Bach's other books. It's a parable that teaches basic personal finance concepts through the story of a young woman named Zoey. The text is very readable for a book about personal finance, and Zoey is a very relatable character. If you are having a hard time figuring out how to save for the things you want, I highly recommend it.
The weather is getting cooler, which means that it's time to consider alternatives to playing in the swimming pool and at the lake. Check out the following 50 ideas for free family fun this fall.
I was reluctant to become an Amazon shopper for years, and now, I can't imagine life without it. More than anything else, I use it to keep us stocked with necessities like toilet paper, tissues, and laundry detergent. It may not always be the cheapest option, but there is enormous value in knowing we have those things stocked, and I don't have to worry about them.
Subscribe & Save has indeed been a lifesaver for me. It means never running out of essential items like soap and toothpaste. I use Subscribe & Save for most of our household goods. You get a discount for subscribing, but more importantly, we don't run out of the things we need when I'm too busy to go to the store. However, if I still need something that I didn't subscribe to, I can order it through Amazon Prime and have it two days with no extra shipping cost.
Wondering how to save money while raising a family? You are not alone. I can't tell you how many moms have told me they can't save money because their kids always need something. I can relate. I have three kids that are continually growing out of clothes and shoes, wearing a hole in their backpack or any number of other things. With that said, it's absolutely possible to save money while raising a family.
Related post: How to Create an Annual Household Budget
First and foremost, successful saving starts with commitment. Saving consistently and automatically is essential to reaching your financial goals, but you won't be successful without a goal. Consider the following:
Once you have your goal in place, automate those savings deposits. You can do this in a couple of ways:
Have you considered what lessons you want your children to learn about money? As a financial advisor who works with people on some deeply ingrained money issues, I have thought A LOT about what I want my kids to learn about money. The thing is, if you don't think about it in advance, you could miss some great teachable moments.
My kids are all getting to the age where they are having a better understanding of money. Even at such a young age, they all seem to have a unique relationship with money. If I could share one ounce of wisdom with them, it's that they are in control of their own financial situation. It's interesting, though. My youngest, who is seven, seems to have the clearest concept of money. My daughter, who is ten, spends money the instant she gets it. I don't think she cares what she spends it on. She just loves to spend money.
My oldest, who is 12, is just starting to get the picture. I will say that his experience with Boy...
As they say, "one man's trash is another man's treasure."
Experiencing periods of financial strife has happened to almost everyone. When it happens, it can bring on feelings of worry and anxiety. But one way to make some quick money is to sell some belongings you don't use or no longer want. From big-ticket items to clothing and tchotchkes, you might be surprised what you can sell to thicken your wallet.
Make a list of the items you'll sell room by room and jot down reasonable prices to ask. Don't worry; you won't miss them once they're gone. Are your rooms over-stuffed with too much furniture? Sell your least favorite pieces. Sell that extra recliner in the back bedroom that's piled with junk. Sell the junk on it, too!
You don't use your bread maker anymore? Sell it to someone that will. What about the wrong size clothing or those you dislike? If you don't wear them, sell...
In life, everything is negotiable and starting salaries in a new position are no exception. Regardless of whether you are returning to the workforce after staying home with your kids or you're trying to uplevel your job, you are a knowledgeable professional. Know your worth. You have experience under your belt and other valuable skills that employers should be charged a premium for utilizing.
Give yourself your worth by negotiating your starting salary within a new company. Not only will it put you on a better financial footing, but it'll also make you seem like an ambitious businessperson.
Be prepared. Negotiation is all about the legwork. Do your research on the company, their current salary offerings, and the average salary in your locality. If this is your first time negotiating a salary or your first time in a while, it can be daunting. Practice with a friend or family member to give you...
Are you having trouble building up your savings? Running a household can be expensive. With so many different expenses, it’s easy for costs to get out of control unless you’re careful. You can certainly find more exciting ways to spend your money than paying too much to your auto insurance company! You can even add to your savings account each month.
Related post: Creating a Household Budget