Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Frugal Tip - Save the Christmas Gift Wrap

Not really a practical tip for little kids, who tend to tear right through the wrapping on presents, but older children and adults can certainly take a little more care in unwrapping gifts in order to preserve the paper for future uses. And taking the time to do it carefully helps stretch out the time involved in the gift exchanging, which can be nice if there aren't that many gifts being given this year. An added bonus, when you pull out the saved wrapping paper next year, you'll be reminded of the good memories from this Christmas, and so might your friends and family who receive a gift wrapped in the reused paper.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Free Christmas Gift!

Your time is truly a free gift you can give, and possibly one of the most valued. When you were a kid, did you ever make those 'gift certificates' for your parents, like "This (card, coupon, etc) is good for one day of taking out the trash (or doing the dishes, cleaning up your room without a hassle, etc)", or have you had your own kids do that? Why not do adult versions? Offer friends with little ones a night out to themselves and you'll watch their kids for free, or older family members a day when you come over and help with chores that might be difficult for them to do on their own. You might even be able to start a new tradition, exchanging some time with loved ones instead of exchanging presents.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Spending Time Together at Christmas

The holidays can be so hectic, and you can feel so pressured to buy buy buy everywhere you look. Get away from all the stress for awhile by having some family time for (almost) free. Take one evening and load everyone in the car, and drive all around a few neighborhoods looking at Christmas lights. You can even make it a weekly or even nightly activity, picking a different neighborhood each time. Take it one step further by picking favorites in various categories like best house, best neighborhood, best house in one color, etc.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Find Rebates, Coupons, and More at DealCatcher

I'll admit, I'm not organized enough to be a regular coupon clipper. I tend to miss the expiration dates. But I found this site tonight and it just might motivate me.

DealCatcher has coupons for just about any store you can think of offhand, from 1800Contacts to Zales and lots in between. Categories include clothes, cameras, jewelry, sporting goods, travel, and more. There are printable coupons, price comparisons, even a forum to join where members can post coupons they find.

They also offer an option to sign up for Deal Alerts, email notifications based on keywords you specify. You have the choice to receive emails daily or as soon as an update occurs.

With all this help ,you may even be able to save some money by not buying a newspaper anymore.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Recycled DIY Draft Stopper

Help lower your electricity bill with draft stoppers at your doors. You can make your own super-fast, easy, and free using materials you already have.


  • Old pair of jeans (don't fit anymore, holes, etc)

  • Old towels (also old t-shirts, unmatched socks, etc)

  • 2 large rubber bands (or ribbon)

Cut one leg of the jeans off as high as possible.
Stuff the leg with the towels, t-shirts, socks. Don't overfill it.
Fold over one end of the leg and secure with a rubber band or ribbon, then do the other end of the leg the same way.
Put the draft stopper in front of the door.

You can make two at once by cutting off both legs of the jeans. You can also embellish it if you like. Stay warm!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Budget Tech/Gadget Christmas Gifts

If you think that homemade is the only way to go for cheap Christmas gifts, take notice of the lower prices on tech items that would be appreciated by people on your list.

  • 1GB flash drives can be found for as low as $5 at computer stores

  • 25-50 pack blank cd spindles are available as low as $5, depending on the manufacturer

  • 5 pack blank dvds are about $5 at several stores

  • Photo paper is available for as low as $4 for 20 sheets

Look around for things you wouldn't normally think to give, but would certainly be used. Something like this would be much better received than a pack of socks.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Make Money with Your Creativity and Zazzle

You see t-shirts with cute images and funny sayings on them every day. Have you ever thought to yourself 'I can do that'? Sign up for a free account with Zazzle and you can stop saying it and actually start doing it. Zazzle allows members to upload their own images and text products such as t-shirts, mugs, calendars, mousepads, and even items like shoes and skateboards.

You decide how much of a royalty percentage above the base price to go, and you earn that percentage. For example, a basic white t-shirt on Zazzle is $15.95. If you set your royalty percentage at 15%, the price will be $16.90. This will make the amount you receive from a purchase of one basic white t-shirt with your design on it about $2.54. Other products have different base prices, so you have the choice of setting a percentage for each product you create or setting the same percentage for every product.

Zazzle makes and ships the products when they're purchased, so all you have to is create your designs, upload them to Zazzle, and set your percentage. You also have the option of being paid by check or through Paypal.

Share your creativity with the world and earn some money too. Sounds nice.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Budget Christmas Treat - Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffles

Whether you're looking for something different to leave out for Santa, going homemade on Christmas gifts this year, or just craving something sweet yourself, these truffles are quick, easy, and pretty cheap to make.


  • 1 package Semi-sweet baking chocolate (8 squares)

  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter

  • 1 8oz tub whipped topping at room temperature

  • Various toppings - crushed cookies, powdered sugar, flake coconut, chopped nuts


Place chocolate in large microwave-safe bowl, microwave on high 1 minute and stir. Microwave another minute until almost melted, stir until it is melted completely.
Stir in the peanut butter until well mixed and cool to room temperature.
Stir in whipped topping and put bowl in refrigerator for an hour.
Take the bowl out of the refrigerator and scoop out mixture with a teaspoon (or melon baller if you have one) and shape into 1 inch balls. Roll each truffle in your chosen topping.
Store the truffles in the refrigerator

Yield: About 3 dozen
Prep Time: About 20 minutes
Total Time: About 1 hour 20 minutes (including refrigeration)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Christmas Gifts from the Grocery Store

Seriously, why not do some Christmas shopping while you're grocery shopping? Think about this - do you know people who like tea? Buy a couple of boxes of different flavored teas, including the new green teas, and make variety packages. Taking the time to put together your own choices, rather than just buying a pre-made variety pack, shows that you actually put some thought into the gift.

You can do the same thing for coffee lovers on your list, especially if they love flavored or gourmet coffees but don't spend the money themselves. Small packages of their favorite flavors or brand will be appreciated and won't strain your budget.

Energy drinks such as Red Bull or Monster in 4 packs could be appreciated too, as well as packs of bottled water. Use your imagination and think about how well you know your friends and family. You just might be able to cross a lot of people off your list while you're buying your essentials, saving both money and time.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Quick Free Fix for Eye Puffiness

If you're suffering from puffy eyes from stress or lack or sleep, try this fast solution that's absolutely free. Place two clean teaspoons in the freezer for about 5 minutes until they're ice cold. Take the spoons out, close your eyes, and place the spoons over each eyelid and hold them there for about 1-2 minutes. The puffiness is reduced without spending money on expensive beauty products. Unfortunately, this trick doesn't really help with dark circles.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Cheap Dry Scalp Care - Apple Cider Vinegar

Winter months can take a toll on your hair, making it dry, itchy, and flaky. A cheap and easy alternative to buying a dandruff shampoo is to use apple cider vinegar. Just apply about a half cup to clean hair and massage into your scalp, then rinse with lukewarm water. The acid in the vinegar loosen the sebum buildup, so after using for a couple of days, flakes and itching should go away. and it's safe for colored and permed hair.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Budget Christmas Gift - Cheap MP3 Player

My youngest is asking for an MP3 player this Christmas, and I'll admit I'm a little hesitant to spend a lot of money on something that will probably get broken or lost, even if I had it to spend. So I've been looking for some kind of alternative and finally found this online.

Available at SPI Shop, these MP3 players sell for $20. They have 1 GB memory, can hold up to 250 songs, and come with earbuds and a USB adapter for charging. They even include 50 free downloads from

The players come in 8 metallic colors - deep blue, green, pink, turquoise, red, purple, silver, and gold - and support .mp3 and .wma formats. And for those looking for an even cheaper deal, the site also offers a 128 MB digital MP3 player for $9.99 that holds up to 30 songs and includes a voice recorder and FM radio. USB cable and earbuds are included. At those prices, I won't necessarily go ballistic if it's dropped or traded with a friend for a cute stuffed animal.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Swaptree - Trade video games, dvds, and more

If your kids are begging for video games for Christmas but you're afraid you can't afford it, try looking at Swaptree and see of you can trade with someone.

Once you sign up for free, list items you have and items you want. Swaptree will start looking for your wanted items among other users to set up a trade. You have to make sure to list items in both categories or you won't be able to make a trade. And all you pay is shipping and handling on the items you trade.

Be sure to look through the FAQ, it thoroughly explains every aspect of the site. And then get busy trading for Christmas or any time of the year!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Budget Christmas Gift - Pocket Buddha

It can be hard to find cheap Christmas gifts that don't scream 'I'm a cheap Christmas gift', but I found a very nice collection of little pocket Buddhas and keychains that cost about $5 each at the Borders book store in my town. There's a total of six, each with a sticker and actual Buddha quote based on the message of the particular figure.

  • Orange - Love

  • Yellow - Praise

  • Blue - Harmony

  • Gold - Happiness

  • Green - Faith

  • Pink - Peace

If you can't find them around you, there are several online sources:
Buddha Buddha Life - Directly from the main site at $4.99
China Sprout - Available here for $3.99
Dream in Plastic - This site has them at $3.95
And of course, there's always eBay

So there are ways to give loved ones a nice, meaningful gift without going over budget.

Local Searches Made Easy

Have you searched for a business in your area and been frustrated that you didn't find all the information you wanted? Try using for one-stop searches of everything in your area. With its ability to pull content from several popular sites, allows you to look up local businesses, find out when they're open, get reviews and directions, all from one site.

With a simple straightforward layout and extra features such as basic weather information and a classifieds section, is a full-featured yellowpages with extras. You can also contribute for free with your own business reviews and classified ads.

If you have a business of your own you can get listed with for free, or take advantange of their low advertising rates. Help local users find out all about you. Editing or updating your listing is also easy with their step by step instructions.

Save time, money, and frustration by getting all the information you need from your local searches with

Go All-in with Online Poker!

Get in the game with Flop Turn River's online poker games, forums, and more. Both new and experienced players will appreciate the beginner's guide with detailed information on various poker hands and terms, as well as bankroll management. The handy poker tools, including an odds calculator, are very helpful as well.

Use the Bonus Code to receive a total 150% intial deposit bonus, up to $75 to get started on Flop Turn River. The site also offers live strategy tips and reviews of brick and mortar poker casinos, as well as a history and review of PokerStars, one of the originators of online poker.

Additionally, you can sign up for Full Tilt Poker and recieve a 100% initial deposit bonus, up to $600. Full Tilt Poker offers great bonuses and is one of the largest online poker rooms. The site also enjoys endorsements from several of the top professional poker players today.

If you're looking for a break from the daily stress, place your bet with Flop Turn River!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Cheap Halloween Decor - Shrunken Heads

It's not too late to set an eerie mood for Halloween. Scatter shrunken heads around your house and yard for a spooky setting.

Dried Apple Shrunken Heads


  • Apples

  • 1/2 cup lemon juice

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • Optional: Whole cloves

  • Optional: Grains of raw rice


Mix lemon juice and salt in a bowl.
Peel apples and coat each with mixture to prevent browning.
Use a small knife or potato peeler to carve out eye sockets, a nose, mouth and ears.

Optional: Use whole cloves for eyes and raw rice grains for teeth

Bake heads in the oven set at 150F for 20 - 24 hours

Create your gruesome display!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Sunglass Shopping?

You don't put your sunglasses away just because summer's over. Protecting your eyes from the sun is just as important in the fall and winter. If your old shades are worn, broken, or if you're just looking for a new pair, try the sunglasses shopping guide at ShopWiki.

Whether you want a high UV protection or sport shades, the Sunglasses Guide can help you find the right pair at the best price. Included is a list of major manufacturers and new products alerts, as well as safety tips and help with choosing the best style.

With the colder weather approaching, be sure to check out other important accessories such as hats and gloves. From baseball caps and fedoras to winter or gardening gloves, you'll find a guide full of information.

Get the knowledge you need and find the best price for sunglasses and more at ShopWiki.

Where's the Cheapest Gas?

With the current gas prices, it feels like I'm having to find more ways to save money just to put gas in my tank. I ran across a site today,, that shows the lowest gas prices for the US and Canada. You can search by zip code or city and state, or use the map. The prices are broken down into Regular, Midgrade, Premium, and Diesel, and are shown for the latest 36 hours.

You can also sign up for free to become a gas price spotter, reporting gas prices in your area to help others. Membership also makes you eligible for prizes such as a $250 gas card.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

School clothes on a tight budget

eBay and Craigslist are well known by now, but they're not the only places to find bargains on back to school clothing. There are a growing number of resale sites offering gently used clothes and many other items. is a place to buy and sell kids and infant items. If you can't find what you're looking for, you can make a Wish List to be emailed when the item(s) are available.

If you're searching for name brand clothing at discount prices Once Worn... Not for Long could be just what you need. They carry brands including Gymboree, Children's Place, Guess, and more. The site also features Usborne books, toys, and gifts.

Cheap Kids Clothes boasts over 5000 items in categories including clothing, shoes, books, videos, and holiday. In addition to gently used they also carry new products at well below retail prices.

Taking the time to do some comparison shopping can definitely ease some strain on your back to school budget.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Home Decor - Ceiling Fans

You wouldn't normally think about buying fans at the end of summer, but with the stifling heat coming to an end soon you can think about beauty as well as function, and find some good deals too. Ceiling fans from Farrey's are a great way to complement your home decor while helping to keep cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

For energy efficiency and durability browse the new Craftmade fans in contemporary, traditional, and specialty styles. Or enjoy sleek design and get free shipping in the continental US with Minka Aire ceiling fans. With thousands of products from several well known manufacturers you're sure to find your unique style.

Replace old ceiling fans or add a new one to your home for year-round comfort and beauty.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Free E-Cards!

Don't let Mother's Day, or any other occasion, catch you unaware. Send free e-cards and help save rainforests at the same time by using Care2. You have the option when to send the card, so you know it will be on time.

There are many engaging cards to choose from, including interactive flash and animated images. Categories include standard birthdays and holidays as well as unusual ones such as No Housework Day, Toothache Day, and Panic Day.

So save some money on stamps and take the time to pick out a great Mother's Day e-card at Care2!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Easy Budget Mother's Day Craft

Celebrate Mother's Day with a handmade picture frame. They're quick and easy to make, plus you probably have everything you need already.


  • Picture frame or cardboard or poster board

  • Decorative wrapping or origami paper or fabric scraps

  • Scissors

  • Craft glue

  • Photograph

  • Optional - Paint

  • Optional - Magnet

If using cardboard or poster board, use the photograph as a size guide to cut out the frame and a back. If you already have a picture frame, skip this step.

Place the decorative paper or fabric right-side down on your work surface. Put the cardboard pieces or the frame on your material lightly trace around it. If you want to make a collage or don't have large enough pieces of material, you can cut up your material into fun shapes and use paint to cover the other areas of the frame.

Cut out the patterns you just traced. Turn your material right side up and glue them to the cardboard, spreading the glue evenly so there aren't any bumps. Let dry and apply paint if you choose.

Line up your cardboard and backing and position the photograph. Glue it to the backing. If you already had a picture frame, insert the photograph.

Optional - Glue a magnet to the back of the frame

This craft can be done by all ages, even adults. Your mother would appreciate the whimsy of a handmade picture frame from her grown children.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Romantic getaways done cheap

Have you dreamed about a romantic trip to an exciting European location? It isn't as far out of reach as it appears with planning and budgeting. Countries such as Spain and Italy offer many opportunities to create memorable experiences.

Experience the worldly pleasures of Milan, Italy, with its fascinating shops and tempting restaurants. View the Duomo Cathedral, topped by the Maddonnina. The Muso Poldi-Pezzoli is filled with gorgeous home decor items, jewelry, and more. Feast on provincial cuisine such as saffron-scented risotto and pannettone at various restaurants in the city center. Find a great cheap place to stay with Cheaper than hotels - Milan.


Navigate the canals of Venice and savor the breathtaking sights of the Piazza San Marco. Spend a day island-hopping to Murano, Burano and Torcello. Shop for classic Murano glass items or exquisite Carnivale masks and enjoy a wide variety of wonderful seafood. Use Cheaper than hotels - Venice to book a base for your adventures that fits your budget.


If your perfect romantic trip involves art and architecture, Barcelona, Spain would be ideal. Stroll through the heart of the town to see segments of the Roman wall and La Catedral. Enjoy the myriad examples of Gaudí's work, such as the Palau Güell, Casa Batlló, and La Pedrera. Take a break in the El Born area, filled with restaurants offering many different delicious foods. Cheaper than hotels - Barcelona can help you find a place well within your spending limit.

Let the character of Madrid, Spain charm you with its heady sights and sounds. Visit the extraordinary art museum Museo del Prado and enjoy the stately architecture of buildings such as the Plaza de Cibeles. Indulge your sweet tooth at the Chocolatería de San Ginés. Book your room with Cheaper than hotels - Madrid to save.


Using Cheaper than hotels to book accommodations can help you find your ideal balance between comfort and cost. Picture yourself enjoying a romantic getaway in Italy or Spain and make it a reality!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Budget Tip - Paying Yourself

Trying to save money by putting a little aside at the end of the month generally doesn't work, because by then it's all spent. You can change that by paying yourself before you take care of other things. Even if it's only $10-20 a month at first, taking a little out of each paycheck at the beginning to set aside can start building up. It might mean having to bring a lunch from home a coupe of times or some other small sacrifice, especially toward the end of the month, but it will be manageable when you see you're actually saving some money finally.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Garage Sale Tips

Spring cleaning will probably involve getting rid of a lot of things you no longer need or want. If you're thinking about having a garage sale to remove as much of it as you can, remember the following tips:

In addition to making lots of signs consider posting an ad on places like Craigslist and your local newspaper(s), both online and print. The more exposure the better.

People are looking for bargains. They don't care how much you paid for it, or that it's brand new still in the box. Don't expect to get at least half or more that you originally spent, or you'll probably be sticking it back wherever you'd been storing it. Price your stuff low, after all, the whole point is to get it out of your house.

Unsold Items
If you still have things after the sale you really don't want anymore, look into posting them on Craigslist or Freecycle.

Good luck!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

No more pizza delivery

Cut corners by making your own pizza instead of ordering. You don't have to buy a pre-made pizza shell, try one of the following recipes to make your own custom pizzas in a variety of ways. You might even discover a new favorite.

Tortilla Pizza


  • 1 package of flour tortillas, any size

  • 1 can or jar pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce, any flavor

  • 1 8oz pkg shredded mozzarella cheese

  • Optional - pepperoni slices, black olives, small can of drained mushrooms, chopped onion, diced ham, small pineapple chunks


Preheat oven to 450°F.
Line a baking pan or baking sheet with aluminum foil.
Arrange tortillas in baking pan and spread sauce on each thinly.
Sprinkle each tortilla with mozzarella cheese and add any optional toppings.
Bake for 5-10 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Yield: ? servings
Prep Time: About 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5-10 minutes

Taco Cornbread Pizza


  • 1 pkg. corn muffin mix

  • 1 lb. ground beef

  • 1 pkg. Taco seasoning mix

  • 1 8 oz. pkg. shredded cheese, divided (Cheddar or Mexican blend)

  • Optional - lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, salsa


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Spray a 12" pizza pan with cooking spray and set aside. Prepare the corn muffin mix as directed on package. Spread batter into the pan. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, or until lightly brown.
Brown meat and drain. Add the seasoning mix as directed on package.
Sprinkle 1 cup cheese over baked crust. Top with taco meat, and then the remaining cheese.
Bake for 4 - 5 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
Optional - top with taco favorites such as lettuce and tomato. Try using sour cream and salsa as dipping sauces.

Yield: About 4-5 servings
Prep Time: About 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12-15 minutes

English Muffin Pizza


  • 6 English muffins, split in half

  • 14 ounces pizza sauce, any kind

  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

  • Optional - pepperoni slices, mushrooms, black olives, chopped onion


Preheat oven to 400°F.
Line a baking pan or baking sheet with aluminum foil.
Arrange muffin halves in baking pan and spread 2 to 3 tablespoons pizza sauce on each.
Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and add any optional toppings.
Bake for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.

You can also use bagels instead of English muffins.

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: About 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes

Pizza on a Hamburger Bun


  • 1 lb ground beef

  • 1 jar or can pizza or spaghetti sauce, any flavor

  • 1 pkg. shredded mozzarella cheese

  • 1 pkg. 8 count hamburger buns

  • Optional - mushrooms, black olives, chopped onion


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Separate buns and place halves on baking pan. Heat buns for 5 minutes.
Brown ground beef and drain. Add pizza sauce to the ground beef.
Spoon the ground beef mixture onto the bun halves and top with mozzarella cheese.
Add any optional toppings.
Bake for 10 minute or until cheese is melted.

Yield: 16 pizza burgers
Prep Time: About 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes

Family adventures on a budget

If the warmer weather is inspiring you to get outside but your budget isn't allowing theme park trips, get creative and make your own adventures. Don't just drag your kids along a nature trail in the park, take the camera and search for exotic animals on a safari. Take a picnic with you and add an extra bag for collecting plants and flowers (if allowed) to press at home for lasting memories. Or go out at night to star gaze and imagine you're on a distant island, rather than just stepping out into your own front yard to look up at the sky. You'll probably have a better view in a park anyway.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Flavor Your Coffee

Following the coffee post, it occurred to me that making your own flavored coffee is another way to save some money. So I've compiled some recipes for mixes to premix, shake well, and store.

Mocha Mix

  • 1 1/3 cups sugar

  • 1 cup non-dairy creamer

  • 2/3 cup instant coffee

  • ¼ cup nonfat dry milk

  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa

Cinnamon Spice Mix

  • 1 1/3 cups sugar

  • 2/3 cup instant coffee

  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg

  • ½ teaspoon allspice

Vanilla Mix

  • 3/4 cup sugar

  • 3/4 cup non-dairy coffee creamer

  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Amaretto Mix

  • 3/4 cup sugar

  • 3/4 cup non-dairy coffee creamer

  • 1 teaspoon almond extract

  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Add a teaspoon or so to taste in your coffee for an inexpensive alternative to store bought brands. Enjoy!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Coffee Break

When you're trying to stretch your budget, you're willing to make sacrifices in several areas. You'll cut back on ordering pizzas or eating out so often. You'll switch to cheaper versions of brand-name items. But some things you just won't touch. If you're one of those people who must have coffee in the mornings, you probably haven't even thought of any ways to try to save some money there. But even with something you love and feel you can't live without, there are always ways to cut costs here and there.

Try blending your favorite brand with a cheaper version. You can still have enough of the flavor of your favorite while stretching it out, saving money and making it last longer.

If you drink lots of coffee, don't be afraid to buy larger quantities of your favorite brand. Take advantage of sales and stock up, or buy bigger packages than you normally do. Coffee can stay fresh for awhile unopened.

Get a thermos and take the rest of your pot of coffee with you to work, rather than tossing it down the drain. That can also help save money if you have a habit of stopping by Starbucks on your way to work.

When your budget is tight, you have to get creative to save money without giving up too much. Look for other ways to stretch your money you haven't tried before.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Those of you lucky enough to get a tax refund this year may be planning to use the money for a trip. European countries rich in history and unique experiences are an ideal destination any time of year. There are so many locations to choose from, and Cheaper Than can help keep you within budget so you can do more.

London is known for many famous people in history. Visit the Sherlock Holmes Museum on Baker Street, or the house of Sigmund Freud at Maresfield Gardens. The Charles Dickens Museum on Doughty Street is also worth a stop to step back into the Victorian era. Enjoy your time in London visiting these sites and more by saving money booking a room with Cheaper Than - London.

Love and fashion in the bustling environment of Paris. Walk the endless maze of streets to see the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame, stopping at boutiques and shops along the way. Booking a room with Cheaper Than - Paris can help save some money for all the things you'll want to buy.

Explore the beautiful architecture and get your fill of history while in Berlin, with the Crown Prince's Palace and Brandenburg Gate among the the beautiful sites. The Botanical Gardens in Steglitz are also worth a visit. Use Cheaper Than - Berlin to book a room for cheap.

Barcelona is the place for a wide variety of interests all in one location. For medieval flavor explore the lanes of the Gothic quarter, then enjoy the Art Nouveau architecture at the Eixample. Indulge your appreciation of fine art at the Picasso Museum, featuring more than 3,500 works by the artist. View the entire city from a tower in the Sagrada Familia Cathedral. Stop by Cheaper Than - Barcelona to book your room and you're on your way.

A vacation in Europe is fun and exciting, with something new to experience at every turn. Plan your trip with a money and time budget to be able to see everything you want.

Brought to you by your friends at Cheaper Than

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Following New Year Resolutions - Organizing Important Papers

Sorry for the long time in between posts. A lot of upheaval and changes pushed many things aside for awhile.

When the new year begins, most people think about their resolutions. Lose weight, get healthy, maybe even get organized. By this time, most of those are probably already forgotten. But one thing that can be done any time of the year can help with staying on top of your budget and be really useful during the tax time is organizing important documents and throwing away unnecessary things.

There are several varying ideas on how long you should keep important papers such as back statements and tax returns. Some things you obviously never throw away, like birth certificates, social security cards, military service records, and divorce papers (if applicable). Through research, I've come up with my personal plan for keeping track of other documents.

Things to keep until sold:
Vehicle titles
Service contracts and warranties
Home purchase and improvement records
Receipts for large purchases

Things to keep until updated:
Loan agreements
Credit card account numbers

Things to keep for one year:
Paycheck stubs

Things to keep for 7 years:
Credit card statements
Tax returns

I'm going to clear out a lot of things I've been hanging on to without having a good reason to do so. It should reduce my paper stack significantly.