One t-r-i-l-l-i-o-n dollars…mwah, ha, ha.

I talked to my mom this morning regarding the “tea parties” going on today to protest the massive government spending plan. Americans are joining together in cities all across the country to take a stand against their growing tax burden and out of control government spending. Both sides of the aisle are guilty of reaching far too deeply into our pockets to fund their own issues – and lately, to “bail out” many many many companies. The Congressional Budget Office estimates the President’s new plan will tally up a 1 trillion dollar deficit per year for the next decade. Now, I’ve never really sat down to think about how much money 1 trillion dollars is. Actually, I’ve never thought about one trillion anything. But I realized when talking to my mom that maybe the reason our politicians get away with throwing HUGE numbers around like they do is that Americans have no concept of how big those numbers really are. [Read more…]

Here’s a tip

During my Easter dinner with family, I heard an astonishing story. Apparently, Oprah told her audience that in light of these economic hard times, we should all band together in a grand money saving strategy and decide only to tip 10-12%. Now, my immediate reaction to this news was horror – my sister is a waitress and I was really quite pissed off for her entire industry that a magnate like Oprah would say something so detrimental to a huge chunk of the population. I mean come on – if you can’t afford the tip, maybe you shouldn’t be eating out? [Read more…]

I can’t leave you alone for one hour!

Earlier this week I decided to make a quick trip to Costco, leaving the munchkins with my husband. When I returned an hour later, I returned to hear the following story from Zack.

(imagine a hot 30-something relaying the following)

“So, shortly after Donovan woke up, the doorbell rang – I answered it, holding the baby to find a phone salesman standing there”. <insert me asking why he answered the door – considering we have a “no solicitation” sign just to the right of the doorbell> Zack continued “I don’t know why I didn’t just tell him we don’t accept solicitors, but I didn’t. So then the phone guy launched into his schpeel about how we could bundle our phone, internet and cable and save a TON of money. He had our name and address, and said there was going to be a representative in our area and he could just schedule an installation for next week sometime.” <insert me asking incredulously if he signed up for a new “bundled” phone service from someone selling door to door > “No! Well, sort of…let me finish” exclaimed Zack. “So, suddenly the guy was pulling out a form in triplicate and filling in our information. It was only after he walked away that I realized I’d signed us up to switch our service and bundle it all together. So I immediately called Qwest and cancelled the new services – so don’t worry, we’re all good.”

“I can’t leave you alone for one hour without you changing our phone service all around. Good grief!” [Read more…]

“I’ve run out of gas…can I have five bucks?”

I’m sure most of you know exactly what I’m talking about in my title. We’ve all heard it. Most commonly when trying to pick up a few groceries on the way home from work. I’ve had the experience numerous times.

You’re approached by someone who looks down on their luck – possibly homeless. They tell you (most convincingly) that they’ve run out of gas and can’t afford to put more in their tank – and could you find it in your heart to give them 5 bucks for a gallon or two? I’ve heard variations on this story – once I was told that he’d just finished up a trip from <insert some random state many miles away>, traveling here for his wife’s father’s funeral. Now, I am not (contrary to popular belief) without a heart. However, it is not my natural instinct to believe these stories or to think for one second that any money I fork over won’t immediately be used to purchase one of two things – neither of which is gasoline – both of which probably taste just like it. Call me a cynic. Call me mean. I just refuse to give these folks any money. I almost always offer to take them at their word…and pop over to a close by gas-station and purchase them a gallon or two. Occasionally I even offer a full tank. I’ve never been taken up on my offer. [Read more…]

Getting gorgeous – at what cost?

I just read an article online called “Get Gorgeous in 4 Weeks” – it was a main link on Yahoo’s homepage. I cannot believe the ridiculousness of it. Included in the article were “four weeks’ worth of purifying, indulgent, get gorgeous ideas”, which is a fine idea, but as I started to read, I realized something. For each days’ idea, there was a product suggested for achieving the goal listed. I started adding up the costs when I got to day 8.  Here’s what I tallied for the 28 days of beauty:

$833.50 – which did not include the following (which had no prices listed)
– Hair appointment with your stylist
– Seeing a vein specialist to get those legs summer ready
– Brow shaping
– Perfume
– Using the concierge to schedule a spa day for you and your girlfriends

Now I’m no beauty expert, but I’m sure I can come up with some stuff that fits the 4 categories included in the article for less than $800+. [Read more…]

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