Within the next few hours, I’ll be back on a plane and headed home. I won’t get in until late this evening, but I can’t get home soon enough. I will say though that I was very pleasantly surprised with Phoenix Arizona. Arizona was not at all what I expected. Although I knew better, I had this vision in my of desert, sand, no trees, etc. The area is beautiful, full of palm trees, cactus, and gorgeous mountain ranges that just seem to pop-up out of the ground. The city of Phoenix is beautiful as well, with immaculately landscaped highways, cobblestone intersections, and water features everywhere. Everything here looks so clean, fresh and new.
I’m currently out of town on business. I don’t travel often, but when I do for some crazy reason a few days before I always begin to think through the question: “How easy would it be for my wife to pick up our finances if died?“ I’m not really afraid of flying and I’ve flown on planes many many times over the years, but the same thought always runs through my mind without fail.
When it comes to family money management and assisting friends and family who fall victim to the current economic crisis, most people want to help, but often have absolutely no idea what to do. 90 percent of us understand that the equation of “family + money” = “a particularly nasty” outcome. Hence, the dilemma resulting from being put in this awkward position, not knowing what to do, nor where to turn, can be a bit daunting.
As a techie and former software developer I love software and in particular money management software, including personal budgeting software. I’ve expressed my extreme fondness for You Need a Budget in the past as my favorite personal budgeting software package. I thought I’d take some time in this article to highlight my favorite online money management tools. Contrary to what many say, I find using both online money software and personal budgeting software to be very complimentary. I use You Need a Budget to manage my budget and daily expenses, but I also use Mint.com as well.
I love the challenge of finding the best price on something I’m going to buy. I needed new light bulbs for my saltwater aquarium yesterday. The initial price I found was around $40.00 per bulb. After a 1/2 hour or so reading through some forums, I found a site that carried the same bulb for $26.00. That’s a savings of $14.00 per bulb. I needed 4 of them equating to an overall savings of $56.00!
Kevin over at No Debt Plan has come up with a great idea called Subscriber Swap Saturday and I’m honored to be participating with him today. Subscriber swap is a great way to introduce you (my readers) to other blogs I read.
No Debt Plan is about getting and staying out of debt with a plan. Kevin, the author, is passionate about budgeting, saving for the future, and using goals to reach financial freedom. You can subscribe to his blog by RSS or email.
I think I’ve finally received all of the necessary tax forms, so this weekend I’ll head over to TurboTax online and do my taxes. I generally do my taxes the weekend after I receive my W-2s from my employer, but this year I had to wait a little longer to receive all of the forms from my advertisers here on Gather Little by Little. I’m a little nervous that I might have to pay this year due to the extra income. I sure hope not, but we’ll see!
Just in case you might have been on an extended vacation in another galaxy or maybe you really do live under a rock, I thought I would let you know that it would seem we really are in an economic recession. The symptoms are all over and new symptoms seem to be appearing daily on the news: layoffs, declining markets, plant shutdowns, small businesses going under, and drastic corporate budget cut-backs.
For those of you who might not be paying attention, Valentine’s day is this Saturday. I’m not a huge fan of it myself, but it’s important to my wife and thus important to me. Valentine’s day is a great time to make a deposit into your emotional bank account. Emotional bank account you ask? Let me explain…
The emotional bank account
I took a Stephen Covey 7-Habit’s class a few years back and one of the many things I learned from the class and the great instructor we had was the concept of an emotional bank account.
This article is part of the Ask the M-Network series. Jason submitted a question and asked: