Did You Go Overboard with Gifts?

Now that the gift wrap is off and the gifts are spread around under the Christmas tree, there might be a sense that you went a little bit overboard. If it isn’t the sheer number of gifts, perhaps it is the credit card bill or the drain on your bank account that tells you that  you might have done a little too much. For me, it is usually the couple of extra gifts that I have left in the closet, too embarrassed or overwhelmed to bring them out. Ah, isn’t it so easy to be Santa these days. Still, it … Continue reading

Extra Expenses of Caring for an Elderly Parent in Your Home

If you will be caring for an elderly parent in your home, you may need to budget for some extra expenses. Even if your parent has his or her own income to pay for items such as prescription medication, you still may have additional costs that creep up and raise your bills at the end of the month. Make sure to put a little extra aside in the following categories of your budget. Electricity With an extra person in your home, you may see an increase in your electric bill. Many elderly people can’t get around and tend to watch … Continue reading

Quick and Easy Holiday Party Ideas

If you want to host a fabulous party but don’t want an equally fabulous bill at the end of it, try one of the following easy holiday party ideas. You can celebrate the season while still staying on budget. Dessert Party Everyone loves desserts, especially during the holidays, when we all want to indulge a little bit. Desserts can be much cheaper than providing a whole spread, especially if you make them yourself from scratch. To save even more money, ask each guest to bring one dessert. Provide the plates, the forks, the spoons and the coffee. Open House During … Continue reading

Three Ways to Avoid Holiday Debt

It is easy to start racking up the debt during the holiday season. There are many demands on our money, such as holiday gifts, special events, travel costs, food, decorations, and other entertaining costs. We often get carried away when we spot the perfect gift or want to make it the best season ever. As you are planning, cooking and shopping, you might want to use the following strategies to avoid holiday debt. Start with a Holiday Budget In order to control holiday spending instead of letting holiday spending control you, you will need to set a budget. Start with … Continue reading

Holiday Parties and Christmas Bonuses

At this time of year, home – based professionals may be getting all nostalgic about two things that they remember from working outside of the home. Holiday parties and Christmas bonuses are things that used to be commonplace for many professionals who were employed outside of the home. In recent years bonuses and gifts have become a more modest, but many people do still get a little something from their employer. Most places of employment have some form of holiday party, too. Now that you work from home, are holiday bonuses and parties a thing of the past? They don’t … Continue reading

Holiday Travel Potpourri

  We are entering the last days of the travel industry’s “dead zone.”  The period of time between Thanksgiving and Christmas is notoriously slow for airlines and hotels.  Consequently, you can snag unbelievable savings on airfare and accommodations if you are willing to travel during the December window. Some of the best deals are being offered on flash-sale sites.  Right now, SniqueAway.com is offering an amazing deal for travelers who have always dreamed of exploring Sonoma, California.  Popular lodgings in California’s wine country have drastically reduced rates to entice visitors.  For example, Hotel Les Mars has slashed room prices from … Continue reading

Time Saving Tips to Keep You on Track

With the holidays fast approaching, things might be getting a little busy around your house. Some people are able to back off a little bit from their home based businesses during the holiday season and focus on holiday activities. People with seasonal home based businesses are likely to be putting in as much time and effort as they can right now. Either way, you are likely to be feeling a little bit crunched for time. Of course, there are only so many hours in a day. While we can not create additional hours, we can employ a few strategies to … Continue reading

Fun Holiday Gifts and Crafts for Toddlers

If you are trying to navigate the holiday season on a tight budget this year, you are not alone. Many people, parents of toddlers included, are looking for ways to make merry for less. Whether your desire to cut back on spending is motivated by necessity or simply a desire to live a little more simply, here are some ideas that you might want to use this year. For your toddler, here are a few ideas. One thing that you can do is to round up any old, broken crayons that are lying around. Home made “crazy crayons”, made from pieces … Continue reading

Spice Up Your Holiday Party

  You don’t have to serve alcohol at a holiday party in order for your guests to have a good time.  There are plenty of ways you can keep your friends and family members entertained without busting your budget on a bunch of booze. Rather than stocking your bar before your guests arrive, have several games and activities on hand to keep everyone busy.  Just be sure to have a variety of fun things to do so all of your guests can participate. Also, game directions should be clear and not overly complicated.  Avoid forcing your guests to play long … Continue reading

Can You Afford a Winter Getaway?

You certainly can if you hit the road in the next three weeks. From popular newspapers to morning news shows, travel experts are popping up just about everywhere today hammering home the latest and greatest industry catchphrase:  “dead zone.” A travel “dead zone” is defined as the weekend after Thanksgiving until roughly the week prior to Christmas.  It’s a time when most people have little incentive to travel far from home.  Consequently, hotels, rental car companies, cruise operators and commercial airlines offer a slew of travel bargains in order to remain profitable between the two busiest holidays of the season. … Continue reading