One-Step Actions that Yield Big Savings

While all of the little things that we do on a daily basis can add up to great savings, sometimes we just need to find a way to make a big impact on our finances. For example, we may be experiencing a pay cut or loss of income, or facing a large expense, such a new furnace for the home or braces for a child. In these moments, we need a quick one-step action that will yield big savings. My husband and I are pushing to build up our emergency fund, just as prices for everything seem to be going … Continue reading

Back To School On A Budget

When I leave for work in the morning I can tell fall is on the way. A few short weeks ago it was light out at 5:45, now it’s dark, and there is a chill in the air that reminds me the seasons are changing. Although I don’t really need the weather or lack of morning light to tell me, all I have to do is walk in any store and be bombarded with the back to school displays. The first school year that I was divorced was so stressful, where was the money going to come from? Hailey was … Continue reading

Thoughtful Gift Giving

Finding just the right gift for your child to celebrate a milestone can be hard, when you are trying to support them alone, it can seem almost impossible. In today’s society everyone wants the latest expensive gadget, a new cell phone, a laptop, the latest video game console. Those things are all nice, and we would love to give them to our children but sometimes you want to give something meaningful and you need to do it without breaking the bank. Birthdays and Christmas’s all seem to run together. Ask your child what their favorite present from two years ago … Continue reading

Trade a Car Payment for the Cost of Gas?

Now that the cost of gas has reached over $4 a gallon, it puts this expense into a completely new category. The rising cost of driving has reached the cost of many other large items, including the purchase of a new car. With gas prices so high, it is time to look at your whole budget. A good friend of mine told me an interesting budget story last week. Both her and her husband live in a rural area and have to commute to work in town each day. They have different schedules, so they can’t carpool. In addition, since … Continue reading

Evaluating Cash Flow

Over a year ago, I wrote an article here in the Home Business blog about “Managing Cash Flow.” I thought it was time to revisit that important issue and talk about ways to look over your business operations and figure out what is going on with your cash flow and ways to make adjustments and/or improvements. Just to share, my home business in 2 1/5 years old and I am just now getting my cash flow to an (almost) comfortable place. Managing the influx and out flux of revenue is a challenge for any business—whether it is a start-up or … Continue reading

Volunteering to Save Money

When you cannot afford something, sometimes you can replace the cash with your time or skills. Many organizations would be happy to allow you to work for them in exchange for their product or service. It almost takes us back to the old bartering systems of long ago. Is there a big concert or theater production coming to town that you would love to go to, but the tickets are too expensive? Contact the promoters and see if you can work the event in exchange for the price of admission. In addition to saving you money, sometimes event volunteers also … Continue reading

Getting Beyond Survival

I wrote earlier today about the basics of starting over—just a little refresher course for those of us who are going through transitions or in need of a boost as we work to rebuild our lives. Of course, single parents are not the only ones who need a crash course in starting over, but it is definitely part of our life path! In the midst of getting things going again, you might find that you get very good at just surviving—holding things together and struggling along at sustenance level. At some point, however, it becomes time to take a leap … Continue reading

Recession Planning

I was talking to a friend this week who is very worried about the economy. She is a stay-at-home mom and they rely entirely on her husband’s income. Recently there have been lay-offs at his workplace, so they are incredibly worried about their financial stability. She told me she was going to start stocking cans of food, “just in case.” That totally took me back… stocking cans of food?? This family has tons of money in investments, so even if her husband lost his job… they would have a large savings, plus unemployment income to live off. Still, she was … Continue reading

Fitness on a Shoe-String Budget

In a time where rising gas rates are making everyone rethink their plans (from vacation travel to how to get to work), finding a way to put fitness on a shoe-string budget is a good idea. While you may think that not having money to join a gym, much less get to the gym would limit your options, the best news of the day is that a fitness budget doesn’t have to cost anything outside of a few dollars to invest in a good pair of shoes if you don’t have one and maybe some resistance bands or a balance … Continue reading

Trying to Keep a Recession in Perspective

There is so much talking going on now about recession and budget cuts and financial disaster. It is easy to get caught up in the concerns and predictions of doom. As single parents, we may already be feeling the reality in our bank accounts and check books (although many of us have been feeling the squeeze for some time now) and it can be scary. I think it is important, however, to keep things in perspective and try not to get too overwhelmed or to panic. The fact is, many of us single parents are already well-positioned to make adjustments … Continue reading