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Gift for Dante's Teacher PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 18 December 2014 10:44

By Melissa Tosetti

Despite my best efforts, there was one person I neglected to add to my holiday list - Dante's teacher, Ms. C.  It dawned on me late last night as we talked about Friday being the last day of school before winter break. 

After doing a little research on Pinterest I found an article titled Top Ten Teacher Christmas Gifts, which was written by Beth, who's a teacher.  Her advice on what not to give was as priceless as what to give, i.e. coffee mugs.  Every teacher has a cupboard full of them.

One of the suggestions she did have was fun smelling hand soap.  I happened to be heading to Whole Foods this morning in a desperate search for molasses since my Safeway was sold out when I bought groceries yesterday.  While there, I found a beautiful bar of Lavender Soap from Bonny Doon Farm in Santa Cruz. 

I think Ms. C will love it!  I have it sitting on my desk to remind myself to wrap it and I have to tell you, my office smells amazing!  I'm tempted to buy a bar just to keep on my desk!

By the way, I have to give Whole Foods credit.  Not only did they have plenty of molasses in stock, but the price was $2 cheaper than Safeway.  Now Dante and I will be able to make Gingerbread Ninja's for tomorrow night's fundraising event at his school.

$7.99 at Whole Foods
How to Pay for Holiday Shopping PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 11 December 2014 08:51

By Melissa Tosetti

I'm a big fan of the Holiday Savings Account - a separate savings account that you contribute to throughout the year. When the holidays roll around, the money is ready. Spending money you’ve saved specifically for the holidays vs. racking up credit card debt makes all the difference in the world when it comes to merry gift giving!  
For years I’ve used Capital One 360 (formerly ING Direct) for my Holiday Savings Account. I also have a free checking account through Capital One 360. When the holidays come around I simply move my holiday savings money over to my checking account and then use the debit card tied to that account for all of my shopping. What I love about this process is that it keeps my holiday spending separate from my day-to-day money. 
This year I made more purchases online than ever before. I’m not comfortable using my debit card for online purchases so I decided to use my credit card.  However, the Holiday Savings Account still comes into play. When I’m done with my holiday purchases, I’ll pay off my credit card with the money from my Holiday Savings Account. 
For more ideas on how to pay for your online purchases, check out Gregory Karp’s article: Personal Finance: Best Ways To Pay For Online Shopping. Gregory is one of my favorite personal finance experts and I have great respect for his advice.  

Happy Thanksgiving PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 27 November 2014 06:41

When To Pull The Trigger PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Monday, 24 November 2014 08:56

By Melissa Tosetti
One of the aspects of Savvy Shopping is to time your purchases to coincide with seasonal sales. By timing your purchases, you can easily save 20% - 60% on just about everything you buy. 
A few weeks ago, while in Target, I came across a pair of riding boots that I fell in love with. A pair of combat boots also caught my attention.  Note: At birth I didn’t get the “shoe shopping gene”, but I definitely have a touch of the “boot shopping gene”. 
I decided to wait a week a week or two to see if the boots would go on sale. Yesterday morning, while in Healdsburg, CA visiting Paul’s family, I realized that with the official start of the holiday shopping season just a few days away, the likelihood of the boots selling out was high. I asked Paul if we could swing by Target on our way home. 
As we were driving to the store, I began formulating this article in my head. I was going to write about how a big part of savvy shopping is timing your purchases, but, how savvy shopping is also about only purchasing things you love. If you absolutely fall in love with an item, and it’s within your budget, go ahead and pull the trigger.  This is especially true with clothing.  If you wait too long, the item may sell out. 
As we walked into the store, I stopped to look at the new sales ads which I hadn’t had a chance to look up online that morning. I laughed out loud when I saw they were running a "buy one pair of boots get the second pair for 50% off" sale. I was rewarded for my patience after all!

The Three Rs of Holiday Shopping PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Wednesday, 19 November 2014 09:50

By Melissa Tosetti

Last month, I was contacted by a freelance writer from Walmart Magazine.  She was working on a story about unique ideas to make your holiday spending go further. The interview turned into an enjoyable conversation as we talked about our favorite holiday tips.

The article was just published this week.  To read it, click here: The Three Rs of Holiday Shopping.

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