How Two Quarelling Kids Helped Invent the Better Behavior Wheel

When David was nine and Laura was twelve, the battles started. Prior to that, they got along great. Laura was always protective of her little brother, and he in turn, doted on her. Perhaps it was about needing space, asserting independence…whatever the reason, it drove my husband and I crazy. It would start over the tiniest of excuses. One minute the house would be quiet, and the next they’d be shouting at one another. “Mom, Laura won’t give my CD back!” “It’s not yours. It’s mine!” “No it isn’t. I got it for Christmas!” “No you didn’t. I did!” And on and on it would go. Until, finally, one of us would have to intervene. And there would be a …

How To Sell Santa’s Slip-Ups

Shoppers spent more than $15.5 billion this Christmas on gifts on the Internet alone. Just imagine how many millions went to unwanted polka dot sweaters, electric nose hair clippers, and thigh masters. That wasted cash piled up under the Christmas tree. We’ve all had it happen to us. In fact, you had it happen to you this year. You unwrapped the pretty red bow and tore through the shiny paper on that present from your Uncle Mortie, and immediately, you had to put on your best poker face. How did you know I needed a sushi roller kit?” you exclaimed with as much excitement as you could muster through gritted teeth. The problem is you don’t eat fish sticks, let …

How to Save Money with Great Gift Ideas

Want to save $1000 this year for very little effort? Gift giving is an area where impulse buying is a frequent occurrence. I was amazed to discover I was spending over $1500 or more per year for gifts. What have you spent for gifts in the last 12 months? In my experience, gifts were last minute purchases for which money was no object. I now spend less than $500 per year for gifts. Take two hours of your life and save yourself $1000 or more per year on gift giving. Get Prepared Label 12 manila folders January – December. On the front of each monthly folder, write the days of the month. Next to the appropriate date on the folder, …

25 Festive Christmas Gift Wrap Ideas

Christmas is coming – soon it will be time to wrap holiday gifts! Do you want to do something different with your gift wrap this year? Here are twenty five festive holiday gift wrap ideas guaranteed to make your gifts look just as special as your holiday season! Many of these gift wrap ideas suggest adding ornaments to decorate your gifts. This can look pretty and be an added gift for the holidays. You can find inexpensive ornaments at Miles Kimball www.mileskimball.com and also Lillian Vernon www.lillianvernon.com. Consider also visiting your local church holiday fairs and even your community’s “dollar stores” for some pretty ornaments at very reasonable prices. These gift wrap ideas are ideas to inspire you. You may …

10 Reasons to Create and Give a Gift Basket!

10. A Themed Gift Basket is for everyone and every occasion. 9. Gift Baskets can be created easily with minimal time and effort. 8. Creating a Gift Baskets will save you time and money! 7. Gift Baskets can be made in a variety of sizes and price ranges, making them ideal for the budget conscious giver. 6. By creating a Themed Gift Basket, you tailored the basket for the particular occasion. 5. Filling the Gift Baskets with lots presents represents excellent value to the recipient! 4. Gift Baskets convey the feelings of the sender in a way that is unique and personal. 3. Lets fact it, who doesn’t love to receive a Gift Basket! 2. Gift Baskets make wonderful gifts …

10 Ways To Reuse Christmas Wrapping Paper

1. Cut out Christmas or snowflake shapes. Stick the shapes on card. Add a tie and hang it on the Christmas tree. 2. Fold wrapping paper lengthwise. Cut out the shape of a Christmas tree, where the edges are touching the folds. Unfold the paper to reveal a chain of Christmas trees. 3. Give children a piece of paper. Ask them to create a Christmas design using wrapping paper, glue and scissors. Laminate it and use it as a placemat. 4. Cut wrapping paper into strips. Make them into links and create a link chain. 5. Cut small pieces of card. Use wrapping paper to cover the back and create a frame on the front. Write a bible verse inside …

How to Plan Outdoor Holiday Decorating for Your Home and Stay Within Your Budget

When I was a little girl, I remember my dad taking us for drives at night throughout our neighborhood to see the houses decorated for Christmas. There were some that had a simple wreath on the front door and some that looked like Santa’s Workshop on the front lawn. I was always amazed at the beautiful lights, glistening snow, and holiday music. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I realized those beautiful displays took a lot more organizing, planning and money than I thought. Whether you live in a cold or warm climate, you don’t have to break the bank in order to create a cozy and beautiful outdoor holiday display for your home. Here’s how. Create a …

How to Organize Your Christmas Baking Without Going Crazy

There is nothing more comforting than the smell of Christmas cookies fresh out of the oven. As a little girl, I remember eagerly watching my mom, as she would carefully remove the hot cookie sheets from the oven. I couldn’t wait to help decorate with the homemade frosting, the cinnamon candies and the multi-colored sprinkles that would make each cookie design come to life. Those were different times then. Mom didn’t work outside the home and family lives weren’t as hectic as they are today. Today, it seems like there is a mad rush from Halloween to Christmas Day and little time to simply enjoy the moments shared. You can enjoy the fun times of homemade holiday baking by planning …

How to Have a Stress Free Holiday

Increase the memories and satisfaction and decrease the stress with these ideas! As the holiday season approaches, my well-organized, super achiever friends have already put into motion the plans for their annual, holiday extravaganza. All year long, they have purchased gifts at bargain prices. Their favorite family photo is duplicated onto 1000, addressed greeting cards. They can’t wait to flip the switch illuminating their house which is permanently wired with twinkle lights and they have a file of menus carefully clipped from last year’s Thanksgiving edition of Oprah magazine. Sometimes I am envious of this achievement, sometimes I hate them for it (not really) and sometimes I even get caught up competing with them. The real freedom comes when I …

How to Have a Happy Christmas

1. Forget Perfect Don’t tie yourself in knots trying to have a Christmas like you see on the pages of a magazine. These are stage managed by a team of people and shot in August. You have a real house and a real family living in it, not a stage set full of models who only have to look good for a photograph. Real families argue and burn the gravy – so don’t try and live up to a media image you have in your mind. 2. Live in the Moment Sometimes there’s so much to do that you spend the whole time feeling anxious and planning ahead. Take time to enjoy the delights of the festive season otherwise there’s …

How to Give a Single Share of Stock As a Gift

Have you seen a framed single share of stock hanging in someone’s house or office? Maybe you though it was pretty neat, or wondered whether it was even real. Believe it or not, single shares of stock are perfectly legitimate and they hold full equity as owner in the company for which it was issued. Some stock brokers and investment companies will give you the ability to purchase a single share stock certificate through them, but in many cases the fees involved will far outweigh the cost of the stock. That’s why some specialty companies have cropped up in recent years to meet the demand for gift stock certificates. These companies offer the ability to purchase a single share of …

How To Give A Great Gift Without Breaking The Bank

Let’s start with the big E …Expenditure I started with an outline budget of what I wanted to spend on this occasion. After I finished examining my expenditures for last year and created my new budget, I found a few less relevant categories that needed cutting out for this coming year. I especially found a great opportunity to save money in our “gift” category. See More First, I made the decision that my theme for this year would be gift giving from my heart. Last year as I had Christmas packages spread around the living room and was trying to sort them for mailing, I found myself thinking like Scrooge. I decided that wasn’t really a very good way to …

How To Buy Christmas Presents And Not Break The Bank

I have kids that are 16, 13,10 and 6 years old. We all know that when kids get to this age that they want gifts that are expensive. All their friends have new mp3 players, high tech video games, cell phones, etc. As working parents we know how much these things cost. I work at a factory, so spending hundreds of dollars on the newest gadget isn’t in my Budget. But since we love our kids and want to give them things they actually want and like, it makes it tough on us. So every year we spend too much money and then the bills come in, and our eyes bug out. Then we have to try and get overtime …

How I Saved MY Family $133.88 This Month

There is one simple thing we all can do to save money. A few months ago I was checking over my phone bill and discovered that I had been charged for $3.99 monthly over a period of about 6 months. The charge was for International Call Plan, which I never signed up for. I do not call overseas, therfore I do not need that plan. I cannot remember now how much if any credit I was given. This month I decided to go on line and pay my phone bill as I do many of my bills. And I clicked on the link that led me to My Services. I was being charged for DSL and Dial-Up. Anyone knows if …

How to Avoid the Post-Holiday Financial Blues

Are you financially prepared for the Holiday Shopping Season? Will you be making your purchases with cash or credit? Do you have a planned amount of money you will be spending on gifts? If you owe $5,000 of more on your credit card or know someone who does, who only pays the minimum payment each month, you are not alone. The levels of consumer debt are increasing rapidly around the world. A Debt is Not Just for Christmas Christmas is the time of year when many consumers fall into the trap of spending too much money on expensive Christmas gifts. Most of these purchases are made on credit cards rather than using cash. This means these consumers often end up …

How To Avoid Christmas Debt Overload

The Christmas season is truly the season of giving. There is no other time of the year when people’s hearts are as open or their hands are as freely generous as they are during the Christmas holiday. I mean, even our favorite Christmas motto states, “It is better to give than to receive.” While giving does fill your heart with joy and help those who are less fortunate than us, many have taken this motto to extremes when it comes to buying Christmas presents for their children, spouses and other family members. It is not uncommon for families to run up tremendous high-interest credit card debt to buy their children elaborate and expensive gifts such as computers, stereos and designer …