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Balancing It All

Struggling to balance all that an established lifestyle has to offer? The balancing it all group is for you. Discuss the challenges you face when your responsibilities at work, at home and with family and friends all compete for your attention.
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Balancing Family Balancing family life takes patience, resourcefulness and many laughs. Learn some tips for managing the challenges of the average family. 167
Divorce, Debt, and Finances Tips, Struggles and Successes navigating Divorce, Debt and Finances 91
  • Balancing Family

    Modern Day Treasure Hunting: Yard Sale or Craigslist?

    • 1 Comments

    Deals can be found at both yard sales on the on-line version, Craigslist, but which one is right for you?  It all depends!  I have been going to yard sales for many years so to do anything else is hard, but I have found some good deals on Craigslist that saved me time as well as money.  Read on to find out the pros and cons of the best bargain shopping options of modern times.

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  • Balancing Family

    Cash in Hand: What to do With Your Tax Refund This Year!

    • 1 Comments

    Tax time is here, and for me and many other Americans this is one of the only times during the year when I have a decent amount of cash on hand.  It would be fun to go on a shopping spree or a dream vacation.  However, those would not be good financial decisions, especially when I have credit card debt and squeaky brakes.  This blog will explore some things to consider when you receive your tax refund this year. 

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  • Balancing Family

    Summer Vacation: Camps and Activities for Kids

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    With summer quickly approaching, perhaps you are focused on planning your summer vacation.  But it is also time to think about summer camps and activities for your kids.  I am going to share some of my successes and failures of recent years, for finding the right camps or programs for all different types of kids. 

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  • Balancing Family

    Planning Summer Vacations: Consider camping!

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    While vacation homes run thousands of dollars for a one week stay, campsites cost about $20 a night and include a view of a lake, mountain, or even an ocean.  Camping is one of my kids' favorite activities every summer.  I have never met a kid who didn't like to camp!  Camping is not a simple vacation, and  requires some planning.  In this blog I will explore some pros and cons to a summer camping vacation, as well as, some on-line resources.

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  • Balancing Family

    Simplify to Save: Chores, Car Repairs, and Shopping!

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    I spend more money when I am unorganized and life is complicated.  I end up paying more just to make things easier.  By making a plan, staying on top of it, and simplifying daily tasks you can save money in the long run.  

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  • Balancing Family

    Positives of New Credit Card Statements

    • 3 Comments

    If you have opened a credit card statement this month it looks different!  New laws have been enacted recently to help consumers and the credit card statements have two major changes on them that can shock you.  And, if you pay bills on-line, you may have to look a bit harder to find this information, but it is worth looking for each month.

     

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  • Balancing Family

    Life Insurance-Does your Family Need it?

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    Life insurance is one of the most important financial decisions you can make; it is also very confusing.  After I had my first child I realized I needed to buy life insurance.  It was no longer just about me. My husband and I researched a few options, almost bought one type and in the end decided to buy term life insurance.  I sleep better at night knowing that we will be okay financially, if one of us (or both) die too young.  In this blog I will share my story and provide you with some resources to get started.

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  • Balancing Family

    You Don't Need a Maid or a Lawn Service

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    It is nice to come home to a clean house and a manicured lawn.  But, if you are spending money each month on a cleaning or lawn service, this is one area you can cut out of your spending column, and use it to pay off your debt.  Cleaning your house and mowing the lawn are never easy tasks to complete, but with some careful planning and family involvement, it can be done! And you will have more money in the bank.

     

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  • Balancing Family

    Family Time and Weekend Activities on a Budget

    • 4 Comments

    You don't need to bust the bank to have fun on the weekends, with the kids, or as a family.  Here are some ideas for things to do all year long to keep the kids happy, and the money in the bank.

     

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  • Balancing Family

    This year we are not eating chicken fingers.... Breaking out of the dinner time rut.

    • 2 Comments

    I find I reach for the bag of chicken nuggets way too many times each week.  If you are like me, and you need ideas to get out of the dinner time rut, read on for ideas I hope to try in the months ahead.

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  • Balancing Family

    Eating Out on a Budget

    • 3 Comments

    If you are like me, and millions of other Americans, then you probably like to eat out at restaurants.  However, this can be a huge money drain on any family budget.  Here are some tips for saving money, while still enjoying the occasional outing to a favorite, or perhaps "new to you" restaurant.

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  • Balancing Family

    How to Get Kids to Save Energy

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    Sometimes I feel like a nag, always telling the kids to turn off the lights, close the back door, wear appropriate clothing for the weather, telling them they are throwing money down the drain. 

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  • Balancing Family

    Bad Gifts: What do you do?

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    It is hard to know what to do with gifts you do not need, do not like, or simply cannot use.  I will present some options for dealing with "bad" gifts and how to help kids deal with them, too.

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  • Balancing Family

    Best Time to Buy: Getting the Best January Deals

    • 2 Comments

    While many people are paying off their holiday bills, January and February are actually great months to get some great deals.  But, make sure you can afford them, and pay with cash! 

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  • Balancing Family

    Too Many Toys!

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    After the holidays I find myself tripping over toys!  My kids are fortunate, and they really do not know how lucky they are!  In addition to Santa bringing a few gifts, their grandparents and three aunts/uncles also give them Christmas presents.  So after Christmas I find our house overrun with toys, and I need to do something!  Here are some ideas for the toy overload.

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  • Balancing Family

    Cook Healthy Meals at Home

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    One of the most important things to focus on when you are stressed is eating well. Stress makes it more difficult for your body to absorb key vitamins and nutrients. So if you are not paying attention to your nutrition, your health is going to suffer. I learned this the hard way. I was always feeling run down and every time I turned around I had a cold. Eating well was not a priority for me when I was working my way out of debt. In my mind, I had bigger things to worry about.

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  • Balancing Family

    Flexible Savings Account: Use it or Lose it

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    As the 2009 year draws to a close, make sure you use all of the money you may have in a Flexible Savings Account, otherwise it is gone.  And you can use it for more than co-pays and prescription drugs, including many items often used by children.

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  • Balancing Family

    7 Tips for Building Family Traditions

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    The hustle and bustle of the holiday season can make anyone's head spin.  But it is important to slow down and take time to build memories as a family.  Here are seven tips for building traditions within your own family.

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  • Balancing Family

    Inexpensive Gifts for Teachers

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    Teacher gifts are a nice way to say "Thanks" to those adults who work with our children, but they do not have to be expensive or time consuming.  Here are some ideas for things to do to for the teachers in our lives.

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  • Balancing Family

    Holiday Gift Ideas on a Budget

    • 1 Comments

    When holiday shopping on a budget, it is important to make every dollar count. In addition to reducing the number of gifts you exchange, these are some ideas for finding the perfect holiday gift.

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  • Balancing Family

    A Puppy under the Tree: Consider the costs

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    Sometimes children ask for a pet as a holiday present.  But before you bring a pet into your home, make sure you are ready.  Pets cost more than just their food!  Here are some things to consider before adopting a pet this holiday season.

     

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  • Balancing Family

    Shopping for gifts for children on a budget

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    Shopping for my kids was easier when they were younger and happy with empty boxes.  Now that they are older and have specific requests of Santa, it is much harder.  These are some ideas for keeping the expenses down when shopping for kids.

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  • Balancing Family

    Layaway Plans for Holiday Shopping

    • 2 Comments

    Over the year's layaway programs disappeared as credit cards became more common place.  Our society became a "buy now, pay later" as credit cards became easier to acquire, but unfortunately many people fell into debt including members of my own family.  It is so much easier to just swipe the plastic and bring the desired item home, than it is to schedule payments and wait.

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  • Balancing Family

    Saving Energy at Home- Low Cost Ideas

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    It suddenly became cold where I live, which means the heat is being turned on, the down comforter is coming out, and I am hunting for winter clothes for the kids who have enjoyed wearing their shorts for several months.  With energy costs on the rise I have some suggestions for low cost ways to save energy this winter.

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  • Balancing Family

    Thanksgiving Celebrations

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    The Thanksgiving holiday is a harvest festival and true American holiday that focuses on family and being thankful.  Hard to argue with that!  But bringing young children to a fancy dinner can be stressful, and for the one preparing the feast it can get expensive.  Here are some ideas to make it a success.

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