December 21, 2008
Let me preface this by saying that I am NOT crafty. Far from it. I have tried for many years to cultivate any specimen of a craft gene that may be in my body, but have failed. So if I can do this, anyone can! I have been thinking of cheap gifts to make people for Christmas, and my sister mentioned in passing that she wanted a jewelry tree (and jokingly said "maybe you can make me one!") So I sought out to do just that. Here are two pictures of the jewelry trees I made just yesterday (not the best quality photos, but hopefully you get the idea):
One in Silver:
One in Gold:
Here are the supplies you will need for one jewelry tree:
-1 glass votive holder (or any container) as a base
-1 tree branch with many offshoots (mine were from a lemon tree, and I chose one about a foot high), dried for about a week before the project.
-Plaster of Paris (from your crafting store)
-Mixing tool (to stir the plaster with water)
-Spray Paint (any color you want)
-Put adequate amount of plaster of paris into base and mix with water (2 parts water to 1 part plaster).
-Immediately put tree branch into base
-Hold in place with one hand use the tape to form a "net" around the tree branch bottom, secured to the base so that you can take your hand away without the branch falling over.
-Let dry for about an hour
-Spray paint when dry, and let dry for another hour or two.
On one base I just sprayed it silver, while on the other one I took some ribbon and glued it to the base to make it prettier (the gold tree). I left the leaves on for effect.
The most expensive part of the project is the Plaster of Paris (about $8 a box, and the spray paint for about $8 a can). However, once you have these, you can easily make dozens of trees. I bought my votive holders at IKEA - 4 for $1.50.
Enjoy, and if you have any questions, please let me know!
December 15, 2008
November 30, 2008
-One night of free babysitting (I have received this twice this year and it was one of my favorite gifts!)
-One free manicure or pedicure (Hand and arm massage included)
-Three hours of housework (cleaning, laundry, ironing, etc)
-Mow your front and back yard one time :)
-One free car wash and detail
-One free errand
-One homecooked meal delivered to your door (including dessert!) any night of your choosing
-Girls Night Out (board games, movie and popcorn at my place)
Do you have a special skill? Cutting hair? Photography? Scrapbooking? So many skills can be made into gift certificates.
Here's one more idea: Do you own a fruit tree? Make a fruit basket for someone using fruit from your tree.
If you have any other ideas please leave a comment here!
Here is all you need for this project:
November 27, 2008
November 21, 2008
November 13, 2008
This offer is only good for one standard 20-page 8" x 11" custom-cover photo book per household. Coupon dispersal ends at 11:59 p.m. PST Friday, November 14, 2008. Free photo book must be redeemed by 11:59 p.m. PST Sunday, November 16, 2008. Offer does not include customary shipping and handling changes or additional pages. Offer applies only to mail-order delivery to U.S. customers. Offer cannot be combined with other coupon codes. Coupon cannot be resold or otherwise transferred and is void on the earlier of redemption or the offer end date.
November 9, 2008
Ben & Jerry's cherry chocolate chip ice cream cones, Bertolli pasta sauce, and Coca-Cola Bottles!
Individual packets of Kraft Light Ranch dressing, Chewy Granola Bars (18 of them!) and Health Valley Organic Split Pea Soup. (Did you know they have a whole organic section?!)
And here's what I picked up a few weeks ago - Dinner for 4 for only 99 cents!
A friend of mine found out that our local 99 cent store gets weekly deliveries on Thursdays. Just ask your local store manager when they deliver, and go a few hours later. Then you will get first pick to all of the best fresh and frozen items!
This is also a great time to buy your 2009 Entertainment Book. Right now you can get $5 off the 2009 edition and free shipping when you go to this link. Hurry, because this offer expires on November 30, 2008. If you do not already know, the Entertainment Book has editions all over the U.S., with hundreds and hundreds of coupons good for "Buy One, Get One Free" meals at restaurants, as well as huge discounts on attractions, rental cars, hotels, theme parks, and even grocery stores (There is a $5 coupon good at Ralphs for every month of the year). In addition, if you create an account online at their website (with your entertainment book card number), you can print even more coupons.
Another great website to save big on meals is at Restaurant.com. Here you can buy gift certificates to restaurants in the amount of $25 for only $10 each. Some of them are even cheaper! I found one restaurant in my area selling $10 gift certificates for only $3 each. The only catch was that you could only use one gift certificate per visit. Check it out first next time you're about to go on a date. You might be able to save BIG!
October 30, 2008
If you have not already heard, both Linens N Things and Mervyns are closing their doors and have already started to liquidate all of their stores. These are two great stores to pick up all your Christmas gifts from (If you aren't already done!) :) Prices will continue to be cut lower and lower each week. Currently, Linens N Things online is offering 30% off of all items, and you can save an additional 10% on the "Deal of the Day." Keep checking online for further discounts as we get closer to Christmas.
Mervyn's will also be slashing prices soon - some stores have already started, and some will start liquidating as we get closer to Christmas. They do not sell anything online, so you will just have to keep checking your local store (or call them) to find out when they are officially closing their doors. You can read more about Mervyn's bankruptcy here.
Another store that is closing its doors is The Sharper Image, due to a lawsuit lost to Consumer Reports. Check your local mall for the most recent discounts, but currently many stores are offering 20-40% off all merchandise. This store promises to live on through a strong online presence, although currently their website just says "stay tuned."
If you know of any more chain stores that are closing their doors, please let us know!! Happy Shopping!
October 4, 2008
26 oz. Heat and Serve Meatloaf and Brown Gravy
1 lb. Chicken Breast Fajita Strips
1 lb. Boneless Center-Cut Pork Chops (4 x 4 oz.)
1 lb. Fully Cooked Meatballs
1 lb. All Meat Hot Dogs
1 lb. Frozen Sliced Carrots
1 lb. California Blend Vegetables
1 lb. Pasta
28 oz. Marinara Sauce
48 oz. Hawaiian Punch
32 oz. Borden 2% Reduced Fat Shelf Stable Milk
12 ct. Corn Tortillas
One Dozen Eggs
One Dessert Item
In addition, they have a Senior Box with prepared meals, for those loved ones in your life who may live alone or need help preparing dinner. If you purchase one of the boxes of food, you also qualify to buy one their "specialty boxes" such as a "Meat and Chicken Combo" or "T-Bone Box" or a "Fruit and Veggie Box" for only $21.
You can read more about it on their website, but all of their food is restaurant grade, not factory seconds or day-old. You do not have to meet a certain income requirement, either.
There are "host sites" in almost every state; just go to this link to find the one nearest you!
September 19, 2008
I was recently given some samples of MaxFactor makeup to try (through BzzAgent) and received mascara, lipstick, blush, and a blush brush. I can truly say that I love the mascara and the lipstick. The mascara makes my lashes fuller than any other mascara I have tried, and the lipstick stays on for HOURS (like 12 hours!) through eating meals and everything! The blush is great, too, but just a little too light for me - I would have picked a darker shade to show more (although it is very natural looking).
Enjoy these savings!
September 17, 2008
A-1 Appliance Parts
September 13, 2008
A second site that has the same idea is ToystoTrade.com. This site includes sections such as "kids room decor" and is more geared towards educational toys, games and videos.
This is a great way to save money, help the environment, and help others who might not have the money for new toys. Great idea!
August 30, 2008
August 28, 2008
7651 Edinger Ave., Huntington Beach
3960 Barranca Pkwy., Irvine
27200 Alicia Pkwy., Laguna Niguel
26732 Portola Pkwy., Foothill Ranch
Happy Early Christmas Shopping!
August 17, 2008
Some of the things I have received through being a BzzAgent include:
-A Sonicare Toothbrush
-A Sonicare UV Sanitizer
-A Frozen Jennie-O Turkey delivered right to my door
-LypSyl lip balm (about 10 of them)
-Four coupons to try Chili's Bacon Smokehouse Burgers for free
It really is so easy and fun to get free things like these in the mail! If you would like to try it, sign up today - just please be sure to tell them I referred you (if they ask)! :)
August 13, 2008
So, if you need some new knobs for your cabinets, outdoor furniture, or even wood for a project, this is the place to go. For a store directory of locations within the US, visit this site.
August 11, 2008
If you haven't yet gotten your converter box coupon, be sure to get one soon (although if you have certain types of cable you might not need a converter box). Then, you can go to either a store to purchase your box, or online, like I did. (I looked at some of the stores listed on their site for months but they were always out of stock, especially at Wal-Mart). We settled on the Artec model, which we are really happy with. Some of the remotes that come with these boxes don't have volume control on them, but ours does. The box was only $9.99 plus shipping (also between $5-10), but we still paid less than we would have at some of the in-store retailers, plus I didn't have to drive anywhere to buy it. We got it within a week.
If you don't have cable, this is definitely the way to go!
August 9, 2008
July 26, 2008
July 24, 2008
1) Costco. Every year Costco sells this huge pack of assorted greeting cards. These are quality cards. There are 41 handmade cards in the box, which retails for $119. Amazon sells this box for $54.95. However, Costco sells the same box for only $15. I use these all year long.
2) The Dollar Tree. I know, not the place you'd think of buying a greeting card. But they actually have some cute ones here! I bought a few recently and couldn't even tell the difference between these ones and some Hallmark ones I had purchased. (I wouldn't buy the ones at the 99cent store, though - they look like you bought them there).
3) Friends- if you have friends who do Stampin' Up, you may want to ask if they make and sell their own cards. I have a friend who has a whole box of homemade cute cards and sells them for only $1-3 each. I usually look through her box and purchase a few at a time.
4) Hallmark - You just can't beat a Hallmark card. So, if it's a really good one, I will shell out the $4-5 for the card. But be sure you get a Hallmark Crown card. That way you rack up points every time you buy a card, and you get coupons in the mail towards more cards, or even gift certificates. Their dollar cards are okay, but you can usually tell if someone bought you one. I would stick with the Dollar Tree cards if I am going to only pay $1.
5) Trader Joe's - Trader Joe's actually sells greeting cards for only .99! They are good quality and cute. Stock up next time you're there!
Melanie also inspired me recently to do more to save on gas money. Her husband, who was commuting to work, decided to start taking the bus instead. He found it only added 20 minutes per day to his commute time, and cost only $1 a day. They are saving around $8 every day he rides the bus instead of driving. Amazing! You can read her blog about this here. Go Melanie!!!
July 22, 2008
For example, say I want to order some clothing from Eddie Bauer online. I would simply type in "Eddie Bauer Coupon Code", and immediately I would find a code to use that will give me either $10 off or 20% off my online purchase. I would type in the code at the end of my transaction on their website. It's that easy!
#1) Shop Around. Dentists charge different fees for the same work. If you need a particular procedure done, it may help to call 3 dentists to see what they charge baseline for, say, a crown, a filling, a cleaning, etc. Many times dentists in large practices (groups) encourage more work done to your mouth than is necessary, as this is how they make most of their money. I had a dentist who recommended 4 cerac crowns, and said I had no other option as he did not do any other cheaper types of crowns. These are $800 each and insurance does not cover them. When I found a new dentist, she told me I only needed one crown, and the rest were small fillings. She "filled" me in on what other dentists do - that sometimes they recommend unnecessary work that insurance will not cover. I am so glad I found a new dentist.
#2) See if there is a "school of dentistry" in your area. These schools provide dental treatments for much less than a typical dentist. The downside is that the appointments usually take longer, because they are done by students being overseen by teachers. Before you balk at this idea, remember that many procedures done in doctors offices and hospitals are also done by "residents" who are being taught and overseen by their doctors. Two schools of dentistry in the Southern California area are the USC School of Dentistry and the Loma Linda School of Dentistry. (On a side note, I would not really recommend taking a small child to these schools as the environment can be a little scary for them, especially if it takes 3x longer for a procedure than it would at a regular children's dentist).
#3) If you don't have dental insurance, you may want to check out AmeriPlan. This is not dental insurance, but is a discounted program for dental services. You simply join AmeriPlan for a small fee and then choose one of their providers for your dental service. This is similar to an HMO. I have compared the rates with my own insurance plan and they are similar.
If you have any other tips, please let me know!
July 9, 2008
Government employees, police officers, firefighters, military personnel, public school teachers, employees of tax-exempt nonprofit organizations (i.e. churches?!), public child-care workers, public healthcare workers, public social workers, and librarians.
So, if you are like me, and have TONS of student loan debt, this program may help you. Especially if you re-consolidate your loans through the federal government, which often times stretches out your new loan balance over a new 15 or 20 year term. Unfortunately, our loans will be paid off before 10 more years is over. Bummer.
Anyway, to read more about this to see if it might work for you, visit www.finaid.org or read this very informative article from the LA Times.
July 8, 2008
-Kohls. They always seem to have jewelry on clearance. You just have to look for the racks in the jewelry department. I can regularly find jewelry that is 70% off here, so I don't even shop anymore from the regular priced racks there.
-Claire's Boutiques. Yeah, it is not the greatest quality, but if you just want some cute options, they do have some good sales. I love their 10 for $5 sale.
-Forever 21. While nothing in this store would actually fit my body, they have a great jewelry section where everything fits! :) Their prices on jewelry are fantastic, probably because they know that teeny-boppers are usually strapped for cash. Their normal price on earrings, necklaces, etc. is around $6-12 each.
Where have you found the best jewelry deals?
July 6, 2008
Well, I just discovered a rental service at my local Albertson's the other night, and I'm a big fan of it now. It is a vending machine for DVD's called "Red Box DVD". They had a ton of new releases, and it's only $1 a night. I rented a movie on a Friday night, watched it, and had it back by Saturday at 9pm, and only spent $1!! If I remember correctly, I pay $4.32 every time I rent a video from Blockbuster. Yeah, I get to keep it for a few days, but I usually end up watching it the night I rent it anyway.
It may not be as fun as perusing the aisles looking for something interesting, but if you know what you want already, then give Red Box a try. You can save a few bucks!
Red Box DVD (locate one near you).
However, you can also get FREE admission once a year if you work for a non-profit organization. The only catch? Your HR office has to fill out the form and send it in, and then the admission is good during the month of September. In order to qualify, your application has to be received by August 8, 2008. For more information, visit this site.
We have passes to the Aquarium and can tell you from first-hand experience that our kids love it, and it is great to be able to go for 2-3 hours at a time. It's not Sea World, but it's sure a lot closer to us! :)
So, this time I listened. I drove to the park and sat in the car. It was silent. I wondered "What am I doing here?!" As I sat in the silence in the warmth of my car, my emotions swept over me and I started to cry. I allowed myself to feel what I had been trying to push away. I felt overwhelmed. I felt sad. I felt angry. I felt tired. So I just sat in the car and cried. Definitely not what I had been planning to do. Then I prayed. I prayed for a long time. I prayed through all of my emotions, I asked God my tough questions, and I sat in the silence. After awhile, for the first time in a long time, I felt peace.
God spoke to my heart that day in the car. He reminded me that I was seeking pleasure and fulfillment through my "shopping spree" instead of going to Him. I realized that I do that a lot. Many times when I'm feeling stressed and overwhelmed, right when my husband gets home, I will jet out of the house for some "alone" time and go shopping. I spend money on things I don't really need, including food that I think will help me feel better, and try to cover my emotions with temporary pleasure.
Just like there are emotional eaters, there are also emotional shoppers. Many people do both (including me - note the reference to CUPCAKES?!) :) Next time you feel the "need" to go shopping, just stop. Ask yourself if you are feeling overwhelmed, depressed or tired. Is that why you are going shopping? If so, turn that car around and find a park. You may find more peace and joy than you ever would at the store. You will also save your pocketbook! :)
July 5, 2008
Clipping coupons is not fun for some people, but for those who take the time to do it for about 10 minutes once a week, it is well worth it. Some people don't clip because they feel they will end up with a bunch of items they don't need, but I only clip coupons for things I do need, unless I will get it for free (if I know it is about $2 and I have a $1 off coupon that can be doubled).
If you would like to get the MOST out of your coupon clipping, you might want to try visiting The Grocery Game website. This is a site where you pay for a monthly subscription to the store of your choice (Ralphs, Vons, etc...) and they do the work for you. They tell you what coupons are coming out each week, where your best savings will be, and what you can stock up on. I have done a trial subscription to this site and it was pretty amazing. However, I do most of my shopping at Trader Joe's (where they don't take coupons), so I don't really need a subscription. My shopping at Ralph's has been mostly supplemental. Check it out! It pays to use coupons! When I do shop at Ralph's I regularly save 40-50% on my total bill by using coupons.
June 22, 2008
June 18, 2008
June 17, 2008
1) Children's Orchard - the clothes here are quality, clean, ironed, and cheap. Shirts run about $1.99 each and shorts are about $2.99 each. This is even cheaper than Goodwill sometimes! But the BEST part is - you can sell clothes here too and get store credit. You have to make an appointment, which I did for last Friday, and they bought $32 worth of clothes from me. I had a lot of unused clothes that had been given to me for my youngest, who has outgrown those sizes. I took my $32 of store credit (or they would have given me $24 cash), and I bought my 3 year old's entire summer wardrobe (well, almost!). I got 3 shirts, 4 pairs of shorts, 2 pairs of pants, and one pair of shoes. Some of the items were brand new with the tags on them! I went over by .12 cents, so I I got ALL of that for .12 cents! Here is a picture of everything I got:
2) Mervyn's - sometimes they have the greatest sales. I have been there twice when they had these $1 and $3 sales, and I got fanstastic deals on clothes. Those sales are usually at the end of the season.
3) Kmart - while I generally don't like shopping at Kmart (for oh, about 100 reasons), they have great sales on kid's clothing. One time I saw shirts on a clearance rack for .25 cents! They also frequently sell kids shirts and shorts for under $3.
4) Walmart - same reasons as Kmart. Check the clearance racks in the children's section.
5) The 99Cent Store - Okay, I know what you're thinking: Either "What?!" or "Ew!", right? :) Well, I was there last week and they had collared polo shirts for boys for only .99 cents each! They were from a chain store - I couldn't tell which one - but I know I have seen clothing there before from Kmart and Walmart. You can either check the baby section or the aisle where the underwear and socks are - they sometimes have a rack of kid's clothes there. Surprised?! I was!!
June 14, 2008
June 11, 2008
El Torito - Save 10% on your bill
Chart House- Save 10% on your bill
(They no longer give discounts for Soup Plantation- bummer!)
Linens N Things - Save 10% or $10 on a purchase of $50 or more
Visit AAA.com/linensandthings to download coupon.
New York & Company (one of my favorite clothing stores) - Save 15% on your total purchase
Payless Shoes - Save 10% on regularly priced merchandise
Target.com- Save 10% on purchases online, by shopping at aaa.com/target
The UPS Store - Save 15% on purchases or 5% on shipping
Knotts Berry Farm - Save 20% on tickets
LegoLand - Save $10 on each admission (until August 31, 2008)
SeaWorld - Save $5 on each admission
"Special Offer valid May 24 – September 1, 2008: Adults at Kid’s Price with Kids 1/2 Price! Show your AAA membership card at the SeaWorld San Diego ticket window and ask for the special Adults at Kid’s Price with Kids 1/2 Price offer or call 800-25-SHAMU and press 14."
JCPenney Portraits: Save 50% on your entire portrait purchase including sitting fees
June 6, 2008
To start, I want to post what my friend Corrina blogged about last week, because it is really helpful information. Here are her tips in a nutshell (to read her full post, go to her blog):
A few things Corrina does to save money:
-Shop at Dollar Tree and discount stores
"Today at Dollar Tree (all at $1) I found Puffs Kleenex, bleach, mozarella cheese, popsicles, pretzels, Rubbermaid reusable tupperware and a Fitness magazine."
-Skip the paper products. "We used to go through a ton of paper plates in a month. It was just easier. But I realized--although I would buy them inexpensively, it adds up and isn't too green either. It's been 2 or 3 months since I last bought paper plates. We just use the dishawasher more! And rags work just as well as paper towels."
-Buy in bulk at places like Henry's.
-Shop at children's resale stores and craigslist.
-Split food items at Costco with a friend.
-Shop at little (local) markets
Thanks for all the tips, Corrina!! If any of you have any tips, please let me know!
May 19, 2008
In the past few months we've also received:
-A brand new umbrella base for our patio umbrella
-2 Redwood benches for our back yard
-A brand new bottle of Shaklee cleaner (safe for children) that is concentrated and makes over 100 bottles from the one!
-A perfect looking bassinette for my friend who is having a baby
I also might receive this week a kid's soccer net and a kid's patio set for outside.
If you haven't joined this group yet, there are Freecycles for each area. Just go to www.freecycle.org. You have to have a Yahoo user name and password, then every day just go to your "yahoo groups" when you log in, and see what people have posted. You have to act quick to get things you really want, but it's worth it! They also require you to post something for free first, before you get something for free (you only have to do that once).
I have given away a lot of great items on there as well, and it is really a great feeling knowing you are giving something to someone who really needs it, versus donating to a thrift shop where someone will eventually have to pay for your item. It is very rewarding!
April 24, 2008
Right now he is on Enfamil Lipil, and a 12.9 oz can costs about $15. The bigger can costs between $20-$30. I have found that not only is it cheaper to buy the bigger can, but Wal-Mart has the best prices on formula that I have found anywhere. They are consistently as much as $10 cheaper than anywhere else. Here are some tips I have found for getting cheap formula:
- Shop at Wal-Mart. Not only are the prices the best, but they have an Organic brand of formula which I love, that is $10 cheaper than the already discounted Enfamil and Similac. That means I get a giant 24 oz. can for $15. The non-organic (regular) Wal-Mart brand is only $11 for this same size (and it has the exact same ingredients as Enfamil Lipil, with DHA & ARA).
-Check Craigslist. I know this might sound risky at first, but I have been on there every day seeing people selling brand new, unopened cans of formula because their baby switched brands. Some of them are cases still shrink-wrapped from Costco. People sell them as low as $8 a can if you're willing to go pick it up and take if off their hands. I also got 2 FREE cans of Enfamil from a lady on there who received the cans as samples from her doctor. They were unopened and saved me about $20.
-Ask your Pediatrician. They have tons of samples of formula to give away. I asked mine for a sample last week and she gave me three containers full.
-Sign up online for coupons and samples at formula websites. Enfamil.com and Similac.com both send free cans when you sign up and tell them when your baby is due (or was due). I got a few cans this way as well.
-Lastly, check your grocery store's discount bins. Usually these are located in the back of the store. One time I went to Ralph's and they were trying to get rid of about 100 cans of Similac Organic, because the label had changed or something like that. They didn't expire for almost a year, and they were only $5 each for 24 oz. (and larger) cans. I stocked up and bought so many that I ended up giving some away (they were expiring before Jaden was on formula).
I hope this helps some of you!!!
-Ben & Jerry's - Free Cone Day
12-8pm, on Tuesday April 29th
-Baskin-Robbins - .31 cent scoop night
5-10pm on Wednesday, April 30th
Can anyone say, "Cheap Date?!"
March 23, 2008
Many people believe that because tithing was an instruction given by God under the old covenant, that we no longer need to do it today. However, tithing was a regular New Testament practice. Without getting into all of the theological arguments for this case, I just want to encourage anyone reading this to really pray and search your heart about this issue. Most of the people I know who have financial problems are in trouble because of one or both of these reasons: 1) They have gotten into too much debt and/or 2) They are not honoring God through tithing. I personally believe both of these are sinful behaviors.
Getting into too much debt (crown ministries distinguishes between good debt - i.e. college loans, etc.- and bad debt - i.e. credit cards for purchases we don't really need) means that we are "borrowing" money from a company when we do not have (and many times, do not plan to have) the money to pay it back on time. Romans 13:7 says "Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor." Not tithing means that we are holding onto our money as if it was our own (when it is all God's money), and we are not respecting or honoring him by choosing to pay our cable bill instead of tithing.
I have heard many stories of people who say "I can't pay my tithe! I don't have enough money!" yet turn around and pay bills for a new flat screen television, a cable bill, a brand new car payment, a designer purse, etc... These items are not "needs"; they are "wants" and we have confused the two terms until we have convinced ourselves that we truly do not have money left to honor God. However, when we honor God FIRST by paying our tithe before anything else, He will always provide for our needs. I have never, ever known anyone who is tithing to not have food on their table or to be homeless.
If you are struggling financially today, I encourage you, I plead with you, to test God and see if He will not bless your desire to honor Him. Give to him first, before going shopping, before paying your cell phone bill. Ask Him to help you prioritize what your true needs are so that you can put Him back in first place in your life. Because if you are not tithing, I would really encourage you to examine if He really is first in your life. Do you trust him enough to try it?
This is an excellent article on the topic of tithing while you are in debt: http://www.crown.org/LIBRARY/ViewArticle.aspx?ArticleId=574
February 16, 2008
First we had to re-train our thinking. We had both grown up without money, so credit cards, to us, were how we survived in college. We didn't have parents who sent us money every month; we both basically put ourselves through school and took out large loans to do so. So, we had to agree that we had used credit cards too liberally and needed to cut them up and trust God to provide for our needs. We would pay cash (or debit), or do without. We also had to put all of our money towards getting rid of our debt, which meant no new furniture for awhile, and no new - well, anything at all.
Thankfully God intervened and some friends of ours began a Bible study through Crown Ministries. We learned how to handle our money, we memorized Scriptures together, and walked with about 8 other couples through the process of all getting rid of our debt together. Within 2 years, we had paid off our credit card debt of over $10,000 - and Martin didn't even have a regular job (he was temping at the time). AMAZING. I still tell people that story today to encourage them and let them know that they can do it too.
To find a Crown seminar or study near you, all you have to do is go to this website and find one in your area. http://www.crown.org/ (Go to the left side under "Find an Event") Their workshops and seminars will change your life. They even have FREE financial counselors that will meet with you to help you get out of debt.
We have stayed virtually debt free now our entire marriage. We currently have no credit card debt, our cars are paid off, and the only debt we still currently carry are our student loans, which are going down every month. As the old saying goes, "If we can do it, you can do it."
Don't wait - Do it TODAY!!!
January 28, 2008
To file your claim and get your refund, go to:
January 8, 2008
1) I always check the major travel websites first, to see what's out there and what the going rate is. These sites will quote the lowest available fare that they know of on the web. Great sites to start with are: http://www.orbitz.com/ and http://www.travelocity.com/.
2) If you prefer a certain airline or know that an airline services the area you are going to, check that airlines website yourself. Practically every airline I know of offers "internet only specials" that you can easily find by going to their web page. Southwest Airlines frequently offers internet only specials of only $39 each way to various places across the country. These may not show up on the sites listed in tip #1.
3) It helps to fly out of a larger airport than a smaller one if you want to save money. For instance, try LAX for cheaper flights instead of John Wayne (Orange County) or Long Beach.
4) Flying on "off" days are also cheaper. For instance, Tuesday or Wednesday instead of a Friday or a weekend. On the travel sites listed in #1, you can also enter in different dates and times to see which would be cheaper options.
4) You can always try sites like http://www.cheaptickets.com/ or http://www.priceline.com/ if you want a really low ticket price. Just be aware that any discount tickets do not allow changes or refunds.
5) If you want to buy a very cheap ticket but need the assurance that you could get your money back should something happen, you may want to look into getting travel insurance which might only be about $30 a person, versus an expensive plane ticket where you are allowed to make changes.
Overall, I would personally never buy from a travel agent, as they will not get you a rock bottom price, and they make money off of the tickets you buy. It does take more work to do the research yourself, but it is worth it if you want to save money!