The KidScoop in the Forum and other newspapers today is about wants and needs. It has information and activities to teach kids the difference between wants and needs.
Recently I saw a post on the Money Savvy Generation Facebook page. It was about a question they had received from a teacher from ND about how to teach seniors about credit cards.
Along with their answer they included a link to an article on Credit cards
There are varying views on credit cards and how they should be used. Some are against teens having credit cards. It may not be necessary for them to have credit cards but I feel it is important to explain credit cards and consequences of getting into debt before they leave home. There are many that get to college and get a credit card or more and eventually get into trouble with them.
We are finally beginning to get winter weather. If you are getting tired of your wardrobe, there are some ways to make some changes without spending a lot of money. One idea is to shop your own closet. Look at your closet and drawers and see if there are items in the back of them that you may have forgotten about. Also, sometimes I get in a rut and wear the same pieces together. Look at your items and see if you could pair a shirt or sweater with a different pair of pants or skirt than you usually wear it with. Also, by changing your accessories can change the look of an outfit. One idea I have heard of is to hang all of your clothes with the hanger backwards and when you wear an item, hang it up the right way. After a certain amount of time like 6 months or a year consider getting rid of items you have not worn. Some exceptions are special occasion items.
If you find you need new items consider looking at clearance racks and resale stores. Some of the items I find at resale stores still have the original tags on them. Other items may be used but many people can’t tell unless I tell them. I figure the less money I spend, I can update my wardrobe more often. Or I can have money to spend on some other part of my budget.
Saturday, January 28, Clothes Mentor Fargo is having their semi-annual $1 Sale. All Clearance items are $1. The sale is Saturday only and doors open at 10 AM.
There was a recent article about efforts being made by legislatures and financial companies to teach financial literacy classes to kids.
I have developed a series of stations with information and activities to teach kids about money and finances. The stations include topics such as budgeting, wants/needs, credit cards, and more. The fee is $10 and includes a workbook. The suggested ages are 10 years and up.
I will have the stations available on Saturday, January 28 from 10:00 to noon and Sunday, January 29 from 1:00 to 3:00. You can come anytime during those time periods. Also by appointment on other days. The address is 1100 32nd Ave S, Ste E, Moorhead. Please contact Nancy at firstname.lastname@example.org or 701-799-1857.
I am scheduled to talk to two different groups about teaching kids about money in the next couple of weeks. Please let me know if you have a group of parents that would be interested in having me conduct a presentation. Or if you have a group of kids you would like me to talk to.
One of the largest expense categories in most budgets is for groceries and dining out. It also may be one of the easiest to control.
Grocery shopping is dreaded by many people but if you take some steps it can be more enjoyable. I will also share ways that you can save money without having to clip coupons.
Stocking Up to Save
Another tip to saving money is stocking up on items you use regularly when they are on sale. Not that you have to buy a bunch but just one or two extra. Sales usually run in 12 week cycles so if you have enough to last until the next time it comes on sale. If you have an extra of items on hand then when you run out you don’t have to go pay regular price for it.
If you take a few minutes each week to set up a menu plan can make it easier getting dinner on the table each night. When you know what you are going to make each night you can have everything on hand and get things ready if you need to the night before. This is one way to save you from stopping for take out as much.
When planning your menu it is helpful to be looking at the grocery store fliers to see what is on sale and try to plan around things you have on hand and are on sale.
Once A Month Cooking
Another way to save time and money cooking is Once A Month Cooking (OAMC) or freezer cooking. The idea behind this is to buy enough ingredients and set aside one day to cook enough meals for a month. There are many cookbooks and websites with recipe plans and tips on this. Or if you don’t want to devote an entire day to it, double or triple some recipes and freeze. You can also make a meal item or baked item if you have some spare time or while your current meal is cooking.
Use a Crockpot
Using the crockpot is both a money saving and time saving way to cook. It is nice to come home after a busy day and smell supper ready. Its money saving because it saves you from the possibility of going out to eat or bringing home take out if you don’t have time or don’t feel like cooking. Also, some cuts of meat, you can use a cheaper cut of meat and it gets tender from cooking all day.
One way people are using to save money is to participate in a Pantry Challenge. They try to go a month by using items in their pantry and freezer. They do buy some groceries, but try to limit trips to the store by using things they have on hand.
I am working on an E-Book with more information on these and other ideas to save on groceries.
Here is an Excel worksheet you can download to keep track of your monthly spending. As she says in her blog post, it is difficult to make a budget when you don’t know how much you spend in each of the areas.
I feel tracking your spending is a great way to see where your money goes. It is so easy for it just to slip out of your wallet without realizing what you are spending.
With Valentines Day coming up, I put together a Pinterest board with some ideas I found online.
If you own an Android device or Kindle Fire you can download the Easy Money app for free today. The regular price is $9.99. Each day Amazon offers a free app through their app store. The special to get the app for free is for today only.
The app will help you keep track of your expenses and it has a checkbook register, a budget manager and more.
There are several different software programs on the market for budgeting, etc. I feel is it important to find one that works for you so you will take the time to use it. With most programs you will need to spend time updating the information but if you get into the habit of it, it may become easier.
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This weekend The Food Network is having a Money Saving Weekend. On Saturday and Sunday they will be featuring shows with ideas to stretch your grocery dollars. They usually do have shows such as Rachel Ray’s 30 Minute Meals and A Week in a Day and Sandra Lee’s Sandra’s Money Saving Meals. But this weekend they are having more shows about saving money while cooking.