How to Save - Part 3
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How to Save

How to Save Your Photos Before Flickr Deletes Them

Posted on Thursday, February 28th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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Flickr is a popular website where people post their photos. Some have been using it for years.

Flickr has announced that it will begin deleting photos from user’s free accounts – if that user has more than 1,000 photos. Here are some tips for saving your photos before Flickr deletes them.

Things You Need to Know

In 2013, Flickr (which was owned by Yahoo!) gave users one terabyte of storage space for photos for free. In April of 2018, SmugMug acquired Flickr. At that time, Flickr updated its photo storage terms and imposed a new limit of 1,000 photos for people using free accounts.

TIME says that 97% of Flickr’s free users will not be affected by new 1,000 photo limit (because they have less than 1,000 photos on Flickr). Those who are using a free account, and have more than 1,000 photo, have until March 12, 2019 to remove the excess ones before Flickr deletes them.

How to Download Your Flickr Photos

Flickr has provided instructions about how to download photos or albums in Flickr. Start by logging into Flickr. Follow the instructions, and you end up creating a zip file. Flickr will send you an email to notify you when your zip file is ready. Open the email from Flickr and click the hyperlink to download the zip file.

The advantage of this process is that you can do it for free. The disadvantage is that it may take some time for Flickr to respond. Flickr says the process can take “several hours, upwards to a week, as the system consolidates all the information.”

Where to Put Your Photos

One option is to pay for a Flickr Pro account. Flickr is not deleting photos from the Flickr Pro accounts. You could find a cloud storage option to move your photos into. If you really love those photos, consider having them printed out.

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The Best Things to Buy in March

Posted on Tuesday, February 26th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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Every month, there are special deals and discounts that are only offered once a year. Buy things during those sales, and you will get the very best price. Here are some of the best things to buy in March.

St. Patrick’s Day Deals

The biggest holiday in March is St. Patrick’s Day. Stores tend to start selling St. Patrick’s Day related apparel and accessories in the middle of February. The price tends to decrease the closer it gets to St. Patrick’s Day, so if you wait a bit, you can get a great discount.

After St. Patrick’s Day is over, you can expect deep discounts on St. Patrick’s Day t-shirts, socks, hats, and decorations. Buy those now, and store them away for next year.

Frozen Foods

March is National Frozen Foods Month. Shoppers can expect to see plenty of sales on frozen foods. Make sure to check all your favorite coupon resources for coupons from brands that your family loves. Those who have a grocery store’s loyalty card will find additional special deals on frozen foods.

March is a good time to stock up on frozen foods that your family eats a lot of. Don’t go overboard, though! Frozen foods can stay good for a very long time – but not forever.

Video Games

All the video games that were released in time for Christmas are now a few months old. Those games are still as fun as they were when they were brand new. Video game enthusiasts will start to see discounts on those games in March. Look for packaged deals that include more than one game, or that include accessories.

Gardening Tools

The best time to buy gardening tools is while snow is still on the ground. Prices will go up in Spring, when people can actually start working on their gardens. Plan ahead and figure out how many flower pots you need. Check your tools and see what needs to be replaced.

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Cheap Ways to Celebrate National Margarita Day

Posted on Thursday, February 21st, 2019 at 7:00 am
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National Margarita Day is celebrated on February 22. It isn’t a National Holiday. You don’t have to spend an excessive amount of money to celebrate National Margarita Day.

A Margarita is a cocktail consisting of tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice. It often is served with salt on the edge of the glass. This drink is served shaken with ice, blended with ice, or without ice.

Make Margarita’s at Home

In general, making beverages at home is less expensive than buying the same drink at a bar or restaurant. Do some price checking at your local grocery store and find out which one sells Margarita mix for the best price.

Pick up ingredients for dinner while you are there. Make tacos and Margaritas at home, and you will get the most for your money.

Find a Happy Hour

Not interesting in cooking? Another good way to celebrate National Margarita Day is at a local Happy Hour. Bars and restaurants that hold Happy Hours offer a limited variety of food and drink for a cheaper price than usual.

Chances are, the bar will know that February 22 is National Margarita Day. They are likely to put Margaritas in their Happy Hour selections. Restaurants might nor might not be aware of the holiday.

Check the Internet

Places that are celebrating National Margarita Day will want to attract as many people as possible. You might see advertisements on social media for places that are local to where you are. Another option is to check the social media pages and websites for places you want to celebrate at. 

Find out what time their Happy Hour will run. Compare the prices – and the offerings – of the various places. One of them is going to have the best deal!

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Save Money by Avoiding Grocery Store Tricks

Posted on Tuesday, February 19th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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Want to lower the cost of your grocery bill? You probably are checking the store’s sales, using coupons, and getting special deals from the loyalty card. There are other simple ways to prevent your grocery bill from becoming too expensive.

Make a List

It doesn’t take very long to put together a list of the groceries and household items that you need to purchase. Take the list with you to the grocery store – and stick to it. A list can make it easier to say “no” when you consider buying something that you do not need.

Go Around the Edges

Start with the produce section. Pick up the fruits and vegetables that you need. Go around the edges of the store and shop from the meat, dairy, and egg department. This is an easy way to get most of the items that are on your grocery list without being distracted.

Ignore the Endcaps

Endcaps are the small sections of shelves that are on the end of every aisle. The groceries there are often on sale. For example, if it is near Thanksgiving, and the endcap has boxes of stuffing, go ahead and pick it up.

Products on endcaps are intended to attract customers and increase sales of that product for the store. Those products are often “junk food” items that you probably don’t need. It is ok to ignore the endcaps.

Walk Down Boring Aisles 

Do your kids grab things and put them into the grocery cart? One way to stop that is to walk down aisles with products that don’t appeal to them.

Plan your route to the back of the store by going through the cleaning product aisle or the baby food aisle. Your kids are unlikely to put laundry detergent or diapers into the shopping cart.

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What to Buy at the After Valentine’s Day Sales

Posted on Thursday, February 14th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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The best time to buy holiday related items is right after the holiday is over. The day after Valentine’s Day clearance sales are the best time to get some excellent deals. Here are some tips about the best things to buy.

Chocolates

The price of a bag of Hershey’s kisses, or Resse’s hearts, drops the day after Valentine’s Day. The chocolate is still good! Pick up a few bags to enjoy at home, or to share with co-workers. Some people use the nicely priced chocolate in homemade cookies.

Cute Baking Goods

Do you love to bake? February is the best time of the year to find heart shaped cookie cutters, pans, and candy molds. You may also find red or pink mixing bowls, spoons, spatulas, and other kitchen items. All of them go on sale after Valentine’s Day is over.

Bakers can also take advantage of sales on red food coloring, red and pink frosting, and baking mixes that are red, pink, or white with red and pink “funfetti”. Look for coupons and sales on brands like Duncan Hines, Betty Crocker, Pillsbury, and Nestle.

Clothing

Clothing stores (especially the trendy ones) typically sell some Valentine’s Day apparel and accessories. The day after the holiday ends, they entice customers to buy those items at a discount. Look for great deals on love themed socks, t-shirts, sunglasses, and pajamas.

School Supplies

Parents can take advantage of the after Valentine’s Sales by picking up Valentine’s Day themed school supplies. These supplies are typically decorated with hearts, and may be red and pink in color.

Look for pencils that your kids can take to school or use to do their homework. Cute Valentine’s stickers can be used as a reward for good work. You might find heart shaped erasers or packages of red and pink construction paper.

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J.C. Penney will Stop Selling Appliances

Posted on Tuesday, February 12th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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J.C. Penney is getting out of the appliance business. This could be a good time to purchase an appliance to replace one that is getting old or has stopped working. There’s a chance you could get a nice discount on a brand new appliance.

J.C. Penney posted a blog on its company website that has more details. J.C. Penney will discontinue selling major appliances effective February 28, 2019.

In addition, the company will also stop selling furniture in its stores. (The exception being some stores that are located in Puerto Rico). Furniture will continue to be available on the J.C. Penney website. The company will also continue to sell mattresses through its website, and in 450 J.C. Penney stores.

J.C. Penney said that customers can purchase major appliances in stores and online through February 28, 2019, and receive free basic delivery and installation on new model purchases over $299.

All protection plans and manufacturer’s warranty agreements will remain in effect for the applicable warranty period.

It is a good idea to check your budget before you buy something large – like a brand new appliance. Avoid putting it on your credit card if at all possible. You may find the perfect appliance at J.C. Penney, for a good price. But, you won’t end up saving money if you can’t pay it off the total on your credit card before the next bill is due.

Make sure to ask questions about what the warranty offers. How long will it last? What does it cover? Who should you contact if your brand new appliance breaks during the warranty period?

You might be able to contact the store, if it is still open. Or, you may need to talk to the company that manufactured the appliance.

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Charlotte Russe to Close 94 Stores

Posted on Thursday, February 7th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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Fans of Charlotte Russe may be disappointed to learn that the company will close 94 stores in bankruptcy in the coming months.

Charlotte Russe filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on February 4, 2019, and plans to seek a sale.

Charlotte Russe is an American clothing retail chain store that operates in the United States. Fashions in the stores are targeted at women in their teens and twenties. They sell clothing in a variety of sizes, including plus sized, and also have lines of clothing for girls, boys, and babies.

If Charlotte Russe is unable to find a buyer by February 17, 2019, it plans to completely liquidate. If that happens, it would be a good time to pick up some last-minute purchases. Stores that liquidate often try to quickly get rid of current stock by selling it at a much lower price than usual.

Here is a list of the Charlotte Russe stores that are closing:

Alabama

Florence: 301 Cox Creek Parkway

California

  • Arvin: 5701 Outlets at Tejon Parkway
  • Culver City: 6000 Sepulveda Blvd.
  • Daly City: 288 Serramonte Center
  • Fairfield: 1350 Travis Blvd.
  • Irvine: 71 Fortune Drive
  • La Mesa: 5500 Grossmont Center
  • San Bernardino: 500 Inland Center Drive
  • San Jose: 925 Blossom Hill Road
  • Santa Ana: 2800 North Main Place
  • Valencia: 24201 West Valencia Blvd.
  • Westminster: 2150 E Westminster Mall

Colorado

  • Grand Junction: 2424 US Highway 6
  • Pueblo: 3429 Dillon Drive

Connecticut

  • Meriden: 470 Lewis Avenue
  • Milford: 1201 Boston Post Road
  • Ledyard: 455 Trolley Line Boulevard

Florida

  • Jacksonville: 4870 Big Island Drive
  • Port Richey: 9409 US Highway 19
  • Sarasota: 140 University Town Center Drive
  • West Palm Beach: 1721 Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard

Georgia

  • Commerce: 800 Steven B. Tanger Blvd.
  • Douglasville: 1440 Douglas Blvd.
  • Pooler: 200 Tanger Outlet Boulevard

Hawaii

  • Aiea: 98-1005 Moanalua Road
  • Kahlului: 275 W. Kaahumanu Ave.
  • Kaneohe: 46-056 Kamehameha Highway

Illinois

  • Algonquin: 1952 S. Randall Road
  • Joliet: 3340 Mall Loop Drive
  • Lincolnwood: 3333 West Touhy Avenue
  • Lombard: 203 Yorktown
  • Peoria: 220 W. War Memorial Drive
  • Skokie: 4999 Old Orchard Center

Indiana

  • Hobart: 2063 Southlake Mall
  • West Des Moines: 1551 Valley West Drive

Kentucky

Ashland: 500 Winchester Ave.

Louisiana

  • New Orleans: 500 Port of New Orleans Place
  • Slidell: 760 Town Center Parkway

Maryland

  • Annapolis: 2550 Annapolis Mall
  • Bel Air: 696 Bel Air Road
  • Frederick: 5500 Buckeystown Pike
  • Gaithersburg: 701 Russell Avenue
  • Hagerstown: 17301 Valley Mall Road
  • Ocean City: 12741 Ocean Gateway

Massachusetts

  • Cambridge: 100 Cambridgeside Pl
  • Kingston: 101 Independence Mall Way

Michigan

  • Dearborn: 18900 Michigan Avenue
  • Howell: 1475 North Burkhart Road
  • Okemos: 1982 W. Grand Rive Avenue
  • Saginaw: 4667 Fashion Square Mall

Minnesota

  • Bloomington: 141 East Broadway
  • Burnsville: 1178 Burnsville Center

Missouri

  • Kansas City: 7260 NW 86th Place
  • Lee’s Summit: 880 NW Blue Parkway
  • St. Louis: 85 South County Centerway

New Jersey

  • Atlantic City: 122 Christopher Columbus Blvd.
  • East Brunswick: 755 State Road 18
  • Moorestown: 400 Route 38

New York

  • Glendale: 8000 Copper Ave.
  • Massapequa: 2135 Sunrise Mall
  • Nanuet: 66 Rockland Plaza Route 59
  • New Hartford: Route 5 & 5A
  • New York: 130 W. 34th Street
  • Niagara Falls: 1982 Military Road
  • Saratoga Springs: 3065 Route 50
  • Victor: 672 EastView Mall
  • Yorktown Heights: 650 Lee Boulevard

North Carolina

Gastonia: 246 New Hope Road

Ohio

  • Cincinnati: 7100 Foundry Row
  • Mentor: 7850 Mentor Avenue
  • Toledo: 5001 Monroe Street

Oregon

Eugene: 293 Valley River Center

Pennsylvania

  • Altoona: Route 220 & Goods Lane
  • Pittsburgh: 100 Robinson Centre Drive
  • Willow Grove: 2500 Moreland Road
  • York: 2899 Whiteford Road

South Carolina

  • Florence: 2701 David McLeod Boulevard
  • Myrtle Beach: 2000 Coastal Grand Circle
  • North Charleston: 2150 Northwoods Blvd.

Tennessee

  • Chattanooga: 2100 Hamilton Place Blvd.
  • Johnson City: 2011 N. Roan Street

Texas

  • Cedar Hill: 305 West FM
  • Fort Worth: 15853 N. Freeway
  • New Braunfels: 257 Creekside Crossing
  • Victoria: 7800 N. Navarro St.
  • Waco: 6001 West Waco Drive

Virginia

  • Dulles: 21100 Dulles Town Circle
  • McLean: 7860 Tysons Corner Center
  • Springfield: 6767 Springfield Mall

Washington

Auburn: 1101 Outlet Collection Way

West Virginia

Morgantown: 9500 Mall Road

Wisconsin

  • Brookfield: 95 N. Moorland Road
  • Glendale: 5800 N. Bayshore Drive
  • Madison: 375 East Towne Mall

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Try the 50/30/20 Method of Saving Money

Posted on Tuesday, February 5th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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Having trouble sticking to a budget? There is a new method that could help you. It is called the 50/30/20 plan.

The plan was created by Help Me Hank, the consumer investigator for Local 4 News in Detroit, Michigan.

The concept of the of the 50/30/20 plan involves a simple breakdown. 50 percent of your income goes towards basic expenses. This can include important things like mortgage or rent, utilities, and groceries. 

30 percent of the plan goes towards discretionary spending. That phrase refers to money spent by consumers on non-essential purchases such as vacations or luxury items. Discretionary income is the amount of money remaining after a person pays for personal necessities and taxes.

Discretionary spending includes the fun things in your life. This includes travel, vacations and hobbies. It also includes dining out at restaurants, bringing home take-out, or having food delivered.

The 20 percent part of the plan goes towards savings and paying off debt. There are two ways to use this part of your budget. One is to spend the 20 percent on a credit card debt, a student loan debt, or whatever other debts you have. It can be used to pay a medical bill that your health insurance refused to cover.

The other way is to put that 20 percent into your savings account. If you think you will be too tempted to spend that money on discretionary spending, there is a way to prevent it. Create an automatic transfer of 20 percent of your paycheck directly into your savings account.

Ideas like the 50/30/20 plan are especially useful for younger people who have plenty of time to save up money for their retirement.

People of any age can benefit from having an emergency fund. Most financial experts suggests that your emergency fund should be equal to at least six months of expenses. 

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Make Use of Reusable Items You Already Have at Home

Posted on Thursday, January 24th, 2019 at 7:00 am
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One way to save money is to reuse items that you already have at home. Doing so means you won’t have to spend money on new ones. It also is a good way to keep useful items out of landfills. There are plenty of items that you may already have at home that can be used multiple times.

Glass Jars
The empty glass jar of pasta sauce, applesauce, or pickles can be washed out and reused. Glass jars make good containers for dried goods that you buy in bulk. Fill a glass jar with pasta, beans, flour, or coffee. You can easily see how much you have left.

Bring an empty glass jar, with a lid, with you when you grocery shop. Ask the store to weigh the empty jar. Then, fill the jar with beans, rice, or anything else you buy in bulk. The cashier can subtract the weight of the empty jar from the weight of the full one and charge you the correct price.

Old Towels
Don’t throw away those old towels that are worn out and much less absorbent than they use to be. Cut them up and turn them into dust cloths. You can wash and reuse those dust cloths over and over again. Doing so can save you money because you won’t need to use paper towels when dusting.

Bread Bags
Most people throw away the bag that their sliced bread came in when the bread is gone. People who have dogs can reuse empty bread bags. The laws where you live may require you to clean up after your dog. You can save money by using empty bread bags for that purpose (instead of spending money on bags).

Food Scraps
Little scraps of fruit and vegetables can be used in compost. You can also add crushed egg shells, used coffee filters, used tea bags, and used paper towels and napkins. They can all go into your compost bin. Turn those scraps into mulch for your garden.

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How to Reduce Food Waste in Your Kitchen

Posted on Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019 at 7:00 am
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You can stretch your food budget a little bit farther if you take steps to prevent food waste in your kitchen. You are probably throwing away food, or parts of food, that are entirely edible. Keep an open mind, and you will look at food differently than you have before.

Broccoli Stems
Many people enjoy eating broccoli florets. Did you know that broccoli stems are edible, too? Some restaurants have started using broccoli stems in their recipes. Peel off the tough exterior of the broccoli stem and use the rest.

You can use cut broccoli stems in a broccoli and cheese soup. Parents can cook the broccoli stems, and mash them, to make baby food. Cut the broccoli stems into small pieces and use them in a chicken and broccoli stir fry. In short, any recipe that calls for broccoli florets can make use of stems instead.

Stale Bread
Bread is a favorite food for many people. Those who love bread often throw away bread that has become stale. This is a waste of good bread! Stale bread can be used in a number of tasty ways.

Cut stale bread into cubes and turn it into croutons for a salad. Grind it into bread crumbs and use those crumbs to coat chicken before you fry it. Dip the stale bread into an egg and make french toast for breakfast.

During the holidays, stale bread can easily be made into stuffing. Bread pudding is a nice dessert that can be served any time of the year.

Browning Bananas
Bananas that have over-ripened, and are a little mushy, are safe to eat. Cut one up and put it in a breakfast smoothie. Browning bananas are the key ingredient in banana bread and banana muffins. You can also use over-ripened bananas to make banana pudding, or add bananas to a bread pudding recipe.

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