Archive | Miscellaneous

When Cake and Ice Cream Just Won’t Do

A recent birthday bash for a five-year-old California girl included professional catering, 150 guests, ponies, and a magician. The tab? $6,000. According to a recent _MSN.com_ story, it’s a growing trend, with parents trucking in fake snow for an afternoon of front yard sledding, spending months planning Harry Potter-themed parties, or hiring horse-drawn Cinderella carriages. […]

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Another Voice in the Retirement Warnings Wilderness

While there’s no shortage of studies and warnings about our lack of retirement preparedness, now there’s another. As reported in the _Wall Street Journal_ on 6/6, new analysis from the indicates that nearly half of all working-age families may not be able to maintain their current standard of living in retirement. The Center pointed to […]

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Avoiding Retirement Killers

There are all sorts of ways to sabotage a retirement. Not saving enough is certainly at the top of the list. But the _Motley Fool_ posted several others on 5/26. Among them: Cashing in your 401(k) plan when switching jobs (an astounding 45% of job switchers do so) and not knowing how much to save […]

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Love is Priceless, but Not the Wedding

When the Beatles sang, “Can’t buy me love,” perhaps they hadn’t considered the cost of a wedding. According to a story in _Kiplinger’s_ May issue, the average wedding now totals nearly $28,000. The story also noted that today just 30% of brides’ parents pay for their entire wedding. To save money, the article suggested holding […]

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Scarier than Public Speaking

You’ve probably heard that most people fear speaking in public even more than death. Well, _Money_ magazine reports that paying for college is what parents of school age children fear the most. To help alleviate that fear, the article recommends one relatively painless action step. Open accounts with Upromise (http://www.upromise.com/) and/or Littlegrad (http://www.littlegrad.com/). Both put […]

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Baby TV

Coming soon to a cable provider near you: the first 24-hour TV channel for babies. That’s right – babies. On 5/11, _CBS News_ reported that _BabyFirstTV_, a commercial-free network aimed at children 6 months to 3 years old, soon will be available for $9.99 per month. Offering everything from sign language training to games, one […]

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Just Starting Out, But Already Behind

A 5/14 _ABC News_ story reported that students now graduating from college with a bachelor’s degree are beginning their careers with an average of over $17,000 of debt. And that’s forcing some – especially liberal arts majors – to forgo the idealism of their intended career in favor of better-paying jobs. Two other news organizations […]

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