Monday, November 28, 2016

Dog Tails

This is my Teddy at 6 weeks.  I can't believe she is over eight and a half years old now!  I am in denial that she is getting older but of course, she is now my age in dog years.... so she is no longer a puppy.  But don't tell her that!

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Tabletop - Yellow, Green & White

 This is our table setting for tonight.  We're having Jim (from the Art of Gardening) and his wife (blogless & my BFF) over.  I have made the spinach salad appetizer and TBG is making Alton Brown's meatless stronganoff, featuring portobello mushrooms.  Earlier today, I baked an apple pie for dessert.  Our table is yellow and green, using thrift store, dollar store, Pier 1, supermarket (Wegmans), heirloom and modern bone china, plus every day stainless steel flatware elements.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

My Fabulous Life - Tabletop Update

We are eating off the white bone china set I ordered a couple of months back and I wanted to give an update.  I love it!  I wish I had done this sooner.  The  plates and mugs are wonderful.  They are slim so a lot fits in a small space -- great when you have only one cabinet to store it all.  Their size also means filling the dishwasher is simple too.  No clunky mugs on the top level, slim plates below -- and when one piece hits another, they don't chip.  Once in the past, I had a set of Pfatlzgraf  that started chipping almost immediately.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Dream or Reality - A New Bed

I see pretty rooms in magazines and catalogues and would love to have a picture perfect home.  The reality of it, is that I never feel like it's worth it to lay out a lot of money for the sake of decorating.  My dream is to have a well furnished home, but the truth is that I am cheap.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Office Gifts

I stumbled upon the perfect holiday gift for my office-mates.  The department I am working in now is comprised of around 16 people.  Men, women, young, middle aged -- and me (old).  Perusing the Dollar Tree today, looking for liquid soap, I saw a bin of these Shugar Soapworks bars in Oatmeal & Cranberry.  Alas, I didn't find a liquid soap I liked.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Birds & Bucks

I have this bad habit.  If I see something I love that I know I will never have a chance to get my hands on again, I buy it.  Even if it's something I have no use for.  I also have another bad habit (OK, I have lots of them).  I buy stuff I would love for other people to have even if I know it is not something they'd buy for themselves.  This picture is a case in point.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Don't Let Fear Sabotage Your Future

Fear can be a potent motivator.  Sometimes that's good, and other times it works against us.

I am fearful of growing old in poverty, so I save and invest.  While the fear motivates me, I do not let it sidetrack me.  Studies of the fight-or-flight instinct genetically encoded into our brains has shown to have a negative impact on investing.  Rather than riding out ups and downs of the stock market, those who panic pull out when prices drop. If they want back in, they wait until the market looks better -- and end up buying at higher prices.  If those funds had been left in place, they would have realized gains during the rebound that followed.  Continuing to invest during market dips means we are buying low and will realize gains later.   Balancing our investments help us spread the risk so that not everything tanks at the same time.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Saving Maven

Everyone who knows me, knows that I am obsessive about saving.  As amazing as it may seem, now that it's time for me to choose my benefits (health insurance, etc.), I get excited.  My employer offers a defined contribution -- they give you money and you elect the benefits you want.  Sure, I have to pay some of the expense myself, but with some analysis, my choices provide me with a great deal.  Perhaps I drink the benefits Kool-Aide as I set up health care exchanges for a living right now.  I see how employers struggle to do right for their people and how they look evil no matter what because they can't give benefits away for free.  Not to start a political debate, but health care reform was a good thing -- and it has potential to get better.