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Make the Weekend Meaningful Roundup

I have had a very challenging week. I found out that the sale of my business is not going to be finished by the end of the year. I hit a deer with my car, and I’ve had to work more this week than I have in a  while. Honestly, though, when I heard about the school shooting in Connecticut yesterday, it was almost to much to wrap my brain around . I have a daughter in kindergarten, and all I could think about was how special she is and how much my heart goes out to the parents of those precious, innocent victims. I’m sure I’ll be back in the swing of things next week, but for right now, Alexa and page rank don’t seem so important. I’m very thankful for all those who read, commented, and shared my posts this week. As for a link list, I’ll just tell everyone to forget reading this weekend and go spend some time with the ones you love. Don’t forget to enter the Big Cash Giveaway at Modest Money or the giveaway for and iPad 3. Eddie at Finance Fox is celebrating his second blogoversary and is also giving away an ...

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Is There Ever a Reason to Blow Your Christmas Budget?

As you may know, I am working very hard toward paying off debt and staying within a budget for the first time ever. We’ve been doing really well. We haven’t gone overboard with Christmas presents and have used rewards points, bartering, or baking for most of what we’ve done so far. However, I went out to lunch with a co worker this week and what I saw caused me to blow my Christmas budget. First of all, since I don’t go out for lunch, I was terribly excited to get to go to my favorite lunch place, Once Upon a Sandwich. It was even better that I had to meet with my insurance biller to discuss end of the year details. It was a business lunch and didn’t cost me a thing. Our table was by a Christmas tree that had one lone ornament. The “ornament” was actually a piece of red construction paper cut out in the shape of a stocking. On it was written: Boy Age 14 Fallen /DC or Graphic T-shirts Size M/L Jeans 30/30 The tree was for selecting a child to adopt for Christmas. This particular one was for children in foster care, and this ...

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What Will the Fiscal Cliff Mean to Health Care?

Unless you have been living in a cave, you are likely familiar with the Fiscal Cliff and what will happen with taxes if Washington fails to act and we go over the edge.( Street Smart Finance had a great post on that if you need more information). One other part of the “Fiscal Cliff package” would mean that Medicare payments to doctors would be cut by 27%. Most people are very concerned, and rightfully so, about tax increases, but the Medicare cuts seem to be sort of an afterthought. Perhaps you aren’t near Medicare age and are having enough problems finding a good insurance plan that you can afford. Maybe you think doctors charge too much, and they need a pay cut. Regardless, if Medicare does cut doctor payments by almost 30%, we can expects some negative impacts on our health care system. Doctors Charge Too Much I’ve heard this argument a million times, and I do believe the sticker price on many health care services is too high. However, most doctors don’t get paid the prices they charge. By being a provider for an insurance carrier or government plans like Medicare and Medicaid, doctors agree to accept assignment. That ...

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How We Paid Off $30,000 in Credit Card Debt

credit card debt payoff

November was a truly happy month in our household. After a year and a half  of hard work, we paid off the last of our credit card debt. We learned some new things about ourselves and our needs and wants along the way. It isn’t rocket science, but here’s how we did it. Background The reason we ended up with this debt was pure and simple lifestyle inflation. We were doing pretty well until we built our house in 2004. It took most of our savings, and by itself, was not a toxic debt. The mortgage is affordable. We have good equity. You have to live somewhere. What got us was the need for stuff to fill it up. We left a couple of rooms unfinished, but filled the others up with new furniture, curtains, rugs, a new washer. I could go on and on. We also bought tons of lawn equipment, new bikes, and skis, whatever we wanted. Before our daughter was born, we decided to finish the spaces we had left, so that was a big bill on the Home Depot card. All the while, we were trading in cars every three or four years, which insured a ...

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Can’t Take My Eyes Off These Blogs #17-Game Of Life Edition

We opened one of our Christmas presents early last night. Our family loves board games, and one of my childhood favorites was Life. My husband has it on his iTouch, but call me old fashioned. I just don’t like it as much, so we bought the board game with the little cars and blue and pink people pegs. Although the quality of materials is much poorer than I remember, the decisions are the same as when I was a kid. You have to choose in the beginning to take on debt to go to college or start a career. Paydays are higher with college, but you have to pay back your loans. You have to choose which house to buy from the cheap mobile home to the luxury manor. My husband ended up winning because I kept getting sued in lawsuits, and my daughter’s occupation ended up being a teacher, so her payday was pretty low, plus she had four children. Anyway, it is a personal finance geek’s dream game except you don’t have control over all the variables. I only wish I still had the sturdier version from my youth. This week I participated in some really cool things. ...

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