Cyber Monday-Carnival of Personal Finance #431

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Take a break from shopping to get money smart at this week’s Cyber Monday Carnival of Personal Finance.

Coming from a financially conservative background, we never went overboard with holiday gifts. And now that our daughter is older, that tradition continues. We bought her a watch (Hello Kitty) and went  to visit my parents. We had a great time and the gifts were secondary to the experience of being with family. (Too sappy?)

Back to the Gifts

I used to be somewhat negative about the new technology, thinking it was a bit “too much”.

But, I’m a convert. I got a Samsung Galaxy 2 tablet last year on sale and enjoy using it for reading, games, photos, video and more. And when my laptop recently died, I got a new one with Windows 8 which I had been moaning about for awhile. Turns out I like it, and the new online 365 Office suite is fast with really cool new features. These purchases were within my budget and not “spur of the moment”, but well thought out.

This Cyber Monday-shop smart and don’t go overboard.

Cyber Monday Gifts

Cyber Monday Gifts

Editor’s Picks

Laugh out loud funny, Holly from Club Thrifty presents 5 Ridiculous Gifts I’m Not Getting My Kids, and says, “As the mother of two toddler daughters, I am horrified by some of the toys I have seen in stores. Read this post for 5 ridiculous gifts I will not be buying.”

Someone bought my lunch last winter and I’ve done the same. It’s quite rewarding! Ray from Squirrelers presents The Generous Stranger Paying It Forward, and says, “A random stranger’s generosity provided a reminder of the power of paying it forward.”

You cannot live rich if you want to be rich. Daniel from Make Money Make Cents presents It’s Time To Stop Trying to Keep Up With The Joneses, and says, “Keeping up with the Joneses is the phenomenon of using your neighbors as a standard for which to compare your own life and material goods.”

Wow, this one is an eye opener. Natalie reminds us that moderation is important in all phases of life. Natalie from Debt and the Girl presents Can Frugal Be Taken Too Far?, and says, “I was perusing the Netflix selection on my computer one afternoon and I found a show called Extreme Cheapskates.”

Harry discloses a “true to life” decision. What would you do? Harry Campbell from Your PF Pro presents Am I Ready for a Career in Financial Planning?, and says, “One of my goals during my three month work hiatus was to look into a career in financial planning. Even though I majored in aerospace engineering during college, it wasn’t until after I graduated and started working that I found out how much I liked helping people with their finances. People are usually surprised to discover that I’m so into personal finance considering my educational background. But I think the two go hand in hand; I base a lot of my investing principles/techniques off facts and reason instead of conjecture and hand-waving. And I think that’s what makes me so good at what I do.”

Frugality & Holiday Shopping

Miss T. from Prairie Eco Thrifter presents Ways to Make Do with What You Have, and says, “Our direct ancestors lived with much less and had many fewer possessions than we now have and use. Making do was a proud tradition just a generation ago – it showed that you were smart, thrifty and responsible.”

Amy from Money Mishaps presents Online and Mobile Retail make Black Friday practically obsolete, and says, “Ladies and gentlemen, here is a certifiable fact; marking down prices for Christmas is an American tradition. Here is another fact that is a bit newer; today, those markdowns and bargains come right to you at home so there is no need to actually go to the store to get them.”

Larry from KrantCents presents Everything Is Always on Sale!, and says, “Everything is always on sale seems like an exaggeration! If you are expecting to go to your local store and find absolutely everything on sale, you will be disappointed. Then again, you can find just about everything on sale somewhere.”

Alexa from Single Moms Income presents 5 Practical Christmas Gift Ideas for Kids, and says, “If you want to save money and buy Christmas gifts kids will love, you need practical gifts. Here is a list of five practical Christmas gifts for kids.”

Daisy from Suburban Finance presents Using Online Classifieds to Help With Home Revovations, and says, “Home renovations can be pretty expensive and labour intensive. We like to use online classifieds such as Craigslist to keep costs down.”

Saving

Jack from Money Saving Ethics presents Old Fashioned Money Saving Tips that Still Work, and says, “These days everyone is looking for newfangled ways to save money and, in the rush to do it, some people overlook old-fashioned tips and tricks that have been around for ages.”

Andrea from So Over This presents More Money, More Gifts: Effective Ways to Save on Holiday Shopping, and says, “There are so many people looking to save money during the holidays while also getting the gifts that they want for their family and friends. Fortunately, there are several effective ways that this goal can be accomplished.”

Katie from IRA Basics presents The Secret of Saving for Your First Deposit, and says, “Are you ready to become a homeowner and do not fancy a no-deposit home loan? Then the biggest obstacle standing in your way is the first deposit or down payment.”

Sustainable PF from Sustainable Personal Finance Blog presents The Importance of Saving Early, and says, “When my husband and I first married, we were poor and in debt. It was a difficult place to be, and, even as we made inroads and improved our finances, we still felt pinched.”

Money Management

Lenny from Best Money Saving Blog presents Avoid these Common Mistakes or you will Always be Broke, and says, “While being broke may just be the fault of your circumstance because you are out of work, underemployed or just went through bankruptcy, the fact is that most people are broke all the time because they make a lot of financial mistakes.”

Sam from The New Business Blog presents Over 70% of Employees Missing Out on Pretax Dollars for Medical Expenses, and says, “In 2013 fewer Americans than ever put pretax dollars a way to cover future medical expenses but changes in 2014 will make these flexible spending accounts bit more attractive. These new changes will actually give taxpayers a bit of extra time to use their money.”

Jason from The Money Makers presents Olivia Wilde is Having a Baby: What are the first-month expenses?, and says, “Olivia Wilde recently announced her pregnancy with fiance Jason Sudeikis as she is due with her first child in the coming year. Although the couple have declined to reveal their due date, they likely are expecting to set aside a budget for their baby, even with their high incomes.”

Big Cajun Man from The Canadian Personal Finance Place presents The 4% Draw Down Theory, and says, “If you save enough for your retirement how much will you be able to spend and how long will your nest egg last? “

Investing

Justin from Edward Antrobus presents Dump your Mutual Fund if they do these 4 things., and says, “The simple fact about investing in mutual funds is that it does take a bit of work, time and energy to do it right.”

Syed from The Broke Professional presents 401(k)’s: Focus on what you can control, and says, “The 401k is a great retirement tool, but it’s easy to get bogged down in the details of investment returns, asset allocations etc. It is best to try to optimize the factors you CAN control, rather than what you can’t.”

Debt

Lily from Paying Debt Down presents Can you improve your credit in 15 Minutes a day? Yes you can, and says, “More and more people are realizing that maintaining a high credit score and understanding their credit is vital to their financial well-being as well as their life in general.”

Bob from Dwindling Debt presents Here are 4 Fees that you actually Should Pay, and says, “There are a handful of fees that it actually pays you to pay (no pun intended) and our little blog today will let you know what they are and why you should do it. Enjoy.”

Marissa from Finance Triggers presents How to spot a good mortgage broker from a bad one, and says, “How can you decide if a mortgage broker is a good one or a bad one? The best way is to learn the answers to these questions.”

Alexa from Defeat Our Debt presents Personal Finance 101: Back to the Basics, and says, “To layout a strong financial foundation you need to know the personal finance basics. In this post we go back to the basics for you.”

FI Pilgrim from FI Journey presents Is Patience Still A Virtue?, and says, “There are a lot of things in life that money cannot buy. But in my experience there are also a lot of things that debt can take away. I council patience!”

Career

Marissa from Thirty Six Months presents The Joys of Being a Freelancer, and says, “While I do not consider my consider my consulting role that of a freelancer, I have, at times, taken on freelance clients for various projects. The beauty of being a freelance is not necessarily the freedom to work wherever you want, but more so the ability to work with whomever you feel is a great fit.”

Buck Inspire from Buck Inspire presents Tis The Enrollment Season To Be Jolly, and says, “It is time to enroll for your employee benefits! Some basics are pretty straightforward and really depends on personal preference like HMO versus PPO.”

Pauline from Make Money Your Way presents I bought another PF blog!, and says, “I just bought a third PF blog, here are the details of how to value a blog and the expected returns!”

Harry Campbell from The Four Hour Work Day presents Have You Ever Had a Really Great Manager?, and says, “On most nights when I get home from work, I have a pretty consistent routine. I’ll work online for a couple hours while I have a little snack and then it’s off to prepare dinner, or grab a quick bite to eat. Once in a while, my fiancee will even cook dinner for me! But after that, I sit down in front of the TV and put on one of my favorite shows: The Office. It’s kind of sad but that show is one of the only ones I can watch over and over without it ever getting old.”

Stu from Poor Student presents Why Students Should Get a Summer Job, and says, “If, as a student, you don’t have a job already, summer jobs are a great way to be able to explore your interests, chosen career, and build experience so you’ll be in a better position when you graduate.”

Sarah from BloggerPreneurship presents How to Think of Blog Article Ideas, and says, “It is very difficult to think of blog article ideas. As a blogger and entrepreneur, you rely on your blogs and websites for at least a portion of your income. Whether or not blogging is directly related to your income or it drives customers to your actual business, having fresh new content is incredibly important. This is no surprise, but what may be surprising to you is how difficult it is to find topics to write about on a consistent basis. “

Other

Pauline from Reach Financial Independence presents My 7 Steps to Financial Freedom – A Proven System for Building Your Wealth, and says, “Today Anton Ivanov of Dreams Cash True gives us an overview of his wealth building system, the 7 steps to financial freedom describe in his eBook.”

Oscar from Money is the Root presents Harmless? Hardly. These things can Negatively affect your Credit Score., and says, “Most consumers are so busy looking out for the big mistakes that can cause credit problems that they completely overlook small but equally damaging problems that can pop up every day.”

Jay from Daily Fuel Economy Tip presents Five Ways for Parents to Save on Tutoring, and says, “You may be starting to notice your child’s strengths and weaknesses in school, as far as grades go. There is a solution: tutoring.”

Matt from Budget Snob presents How your Upbringing Affects your Money Habits Part 2, and says, “Something that most people do not realize is that how they were raised as children can actually have a big impact on how they make decisions as adults, especially with money.”

Graham Clark from Moneystepper presents Peer-to-peer lending – Funding Circle experiment, and says, “Funding circle review – With dismal savings rates, peer-to-peer lending is booming. However, peer-to-business may be a better opportunity for investors.”

Mrs PoP from Planting Our Pennies presents He Said She Said: Financial Bullying, and says, “Mr & Mrs PoP go through a quiz on financial bullying as a check on their financial communication skills.”

Totally promotional and (possibly) helpful link to some really good cyber Monday sales:

Today, if you’re looking for a deal, I admit I peaked at the online offerings.

I’m still financially conservative at heart and encourage everyone to shop the sales (and don’t forget your local retailers either).

This link had some economical deals on technology…..I checked it out  and saw a great deal on the Kindle Fire for under $200 - Amazon – Cyber Monday Deals Week in Laptops .

Don’t forget to tell others about these great money articles!

Are you shopping online on “Cyber Monday?”

 

    4 Comments

  1. Thanks for inclusion and hosting, I really appreciate it.

    krantcents

    December 2, 2013

  2. Great set of post Miss FriedBerg, I particularly enjoyed reading about the gifts about the most ridiculous gifts I wont be getting my children for the holidays. Great content, thanks for sharing.

    Shobir | Find Some Money

    December 3, 2013

  3. Great tips and list of sources! Although I think that things like Black Friday and Cyber Monday just contribute to our growing consumerism, I do like them on a personal level because it allows me to save.

    Janelle Moore

    December 6, 2013

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