From the monthly archives:

April 2010

Sometimes I hear a quote that is just too good to pass on. This week I saw one flash across my Facebook wall that I will never forget. “After Monday and Tuesday Even the Calendar Says WTF!” So on today, the F of WTF, I salute you random person who came up with this statement that was then virally plastered on facebook walls and Twitter pages across the world. I also salute the five awesome writers who follow me on twitter, so check out their articles from this week and have a great lazy SS.

@GoBankingRates made a music video how to be a zilchionaire. I don’t really know what to say about this, other than it was pretty funny and he shouldn’t quit his day job. Live within your means or you to could become a Zilchionaire.

@JustHeather sent me  a guest post on 4 money saving tips for gardeners. As a budding gardener myself, these are some great tips I already practice. For the most part anyway I try to grow from seeds, although I haven’t gotten so good yet that I am harvesting seeds from my crops.

@FinanciallyPoor wants to know how $1,000 would change your life. I honestly don’t know that $1k would change my life all that much. I would just throw it on my second mortgage r sock it away for a vacation somewhere. Maybe that is a problem but at this point in my life $1k just isn’t going to make do to big of a happy dance.

@MrsMicah postulates on being your own boss. I think the two biggest things on this list that get a lot of people are the customer service and sales pieces. They are both necessary to running any kind of business and can be things a lot of people aren’t comfortable with.

@MoneyCrush says stop blaming outside forces. After years in collections it never ceased to amaze me how it was always someone/something elses fault that results in people getting behind. Stop pointing fingers at other people and point it where it counts, at yourself.

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Buying the cheapest thing you can find certainly isn’t always a great idea. It is good to be frugal but quality is equally as important as price. I fell game to the cheaper is better trap the other day when I was in the market for a cornhole set. You know the bean bag game where you toss bags at a wooden board trying to get them in hole. I used to own a set I built myself but they were to big and bulky so I ditched them.

I went out to buy a set and was presented with two choices, one at $79.99 and one at $99.99. The $79 one was built out of wood and the more expensive one was molded plastic. The frugalite in me decided the cheaper one was going to be the better deal so I bought it. This was actually very out of character for me. I typically research everything to death before I make a purchase. This was a spur of the moment deal and I went with the cheaper option on gut.

Turns out there is a reason I over research everything before i make a purchase.  When I make a spur of the moment decision to buy something it is a bad deal. I picked up the cheaper version and was sorry the first time I went to use it. The bags were like paper, too light, and the boards were cheaply made. If I wasn’t sorry the first time, I was crazy sorry the second time when the board actually fell apart. I tried to fix it but  it was the cheapest, most worthless, piece of crap I have ever purchased. I don’t know what I was thinking. I returned it the next day and I plan to build one from scratch.

The point I am trying to make with this lengthy diatribe is that just because it is cheaper doesn’t mean it is better. Especially if you are making a purchase of something you really will use regularly. I didn’t do what I knew I should have done and I bought a lemon. The more expensive option was better but even it wasn’t the best way to go. Looking back at it the best way to do it was to make my own. That way I know it is done right and better. Cheaper isn’t better, but sometimes more expensive isn’t so much better either. Weigh your options accordingly and then make your decision. Not much comes from split second decision making.

Photo: (GoMattOlson)

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A while back I wrote about just what a swagbuck is. At the time I hadn’t earned enough bucks to get any Swag out of the deal and to be perfectly honest with you I wasn’t entirely convinced of the usefulness of the site. It turns out you can really turn those bucks into cash. Figuratively anyway. I recently converted my earned bucks into $15 in Amazon gift cards which I used to by a car mount for my iPhone. It was something I wanted but wouldn’t normally fork the cash over for. Here is how I earned the bucks:

1.) Straight Searching

Straight searching is the easiest way to earn SwagBucks. I have configured swagbucks.com as my default search engine in Chrome and installed the toolbar in FireFox. This way I am always using their engine to perform my searches.

2.) Referrals

Right now I have a total of 5 referrals  but only one of them is really cranking out the bucks. Referrals have netted me a total of 627 swagbucks. That is five bucks for not even doing anything at all.

3.) Other Stuff

Every now and then I get a few SwagBucks for having the toolbar installed, or on a rare occasion I will pick up some using a SwagCode I found. Most of the “other” stuff takes a lot of effort that I just haven’t found myself willing to exert. I am sure i could get SwagBucks quicker if I looked for the SwagCodes everyday but I prefer to just keep on keeping on.

The fact is you can easily earn enough of these SwagBucks to convert the pretend money into tangible objects you actually want. So what is stopping you? Get out there and start earning some swag today.

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Mind Over Money – A NOVA Special

April 27, 2010
Thumbnail image for Mind Over Money – A NOVA Special

PBS is poised to run a NOVA special tonight at 8PM ET/PT titled Mind Over Money. The show seeks to explore the differences between conventional economics and behavioral economics. They try to understand how emotions play a role in economics and show various experiments that were conducted to “prove” emotions influence your decisions. This emotional […]

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Friday Finance Followers – People Make the World Go Round Edition

April 23, 2010

Last night I watched “The Blind Side” which is the story of how Michael Oher was taken in by a rich white family and given the opportunity to play football in the best conference in the United States, even if it was for the wrong team. Stories like this are what makes the world go […]

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