October 30, 2013

Shopaholic Addiction Statistics

Another CreditDonkey survey yields un-surprising results.  

Warning signs of shopaholism include feeling guilt or shame after shopping (which 36.7 percent of respondents have experienced), hiding purchases from their families (20.5 percent), and checking available credit at least once a week (26.7 percent). However, just 4.7 percent of respondents said they have been labeled “shopaholics."

October 29, 2013

Houston, we have a problem...

A recent study by CreditDonkey found that 41% of Americans have less than $500 in savings. And 76% of us are living paycheck to paycheck. 

LearnVe$t http://www.learnvest.com/2013/08/youll-never-believe-how-much-i-saved-and-how/
Credit Donkey  www.creditdonkey.com/no-emergency-savings.html

October 28, 2013

2013 Money Horoscope: Taurus

When people want to make safe and prudent financial policies, they come to you for advice. Your emphasis on preservation and certainty over risk pays off much in the same way that the proverbial tortoise beat the tail off that famous fable hare. The first half of the year will be a continuation of the fabulous feeling--sort of like discovering you have a doting, rich uncle--that’s been around since the prosperous planet Jupiter entered your house of earning and spending last June. 

Even with a handsome cash flow, don't let that feeling of abundance to tempt you into spending more than you should. More than ever, you must fatten your savings to protect you from the potential pain of leaner times. In 2013, things will slow down during February, July and December while the ruler of your financial life, Mercury, moves backward through the sky. But as long as you refrain from excessive indulgences, you can keep your balance sheet in the black.


October 27, 2013

RANDOM QUOTE: Winnie The Pooh

Winnie The Pooh makes me think of my sister.  Maybe that's why everything Pooh always makes me happy.

October 26, 2013

RANDOM TIP: 25 Easy Tips, Strategies, and Ideas for Small Space Living

  1. Install wall-mounted shelves above other furniture, and shelves above doorways.
  2. If you don't love it or need it, get rid of it.
  3. Remove doors for an open layout. Hang up curtains where needed for privacy.
  4. Use the "One In, One Out" strategy.
  5. Buy infrequently and with great care. Focus on high-quality and long-lasting pieces, even if you have to save up for them. Make sure they fit your space perfectly.
  6. Buy a bed with storage capabilities, either drawers underneath or a one you can jack up or loft.
  7. Use a pot rack.
  8. Get rid of your microwave. Use the oven or stove top instead.
  9. Hang cup hooks of different sizes everywhere. They're inexpensive, don't take up a ton of space, and keep things off the counters and floor.
  10. Install vertical storage and built-ins.
  11. Bring in natural light as much as possible.
  12. Get small appliances and small pots and pans.
  13. Go for a fairly neutral color scheme, involving shades of the same color (with a few pops), or...
  14. Go for a bold color scheme because it provides some 'wow' and dark colors hide corner shadows. But more than bold or neutral, go for a cohesive colors scheme.
  15. If a particular spot seems to attract clutter, devise a shelving or other type storage solution to contain it.
  16. Choose upholstered and case goods with legs that give them floor clearance. Air (or negative space) provides the visual illusion of spaciousness.
  17. Buy multi-functional furniture, like an ottoman with storage inside the base.
  18. Rip your CDs to a secure and reliable hard-drive and sell off your albums.
  19. Put anything you don't use daily in a storage container.
  20. When you finish a book, immediately post it on Paperbackswap.com to get it out of the house.
  21. Play with a room arrangement on paper until you figure out what works best.
  22. Use the corners. Don't let the precious space go to waste.
  23. If you're a collector, rotate your collections in order to keep visual clutter to a minimum.
  24. Add an orchid or fresh flowers seasonally.
  25. Use mirrors or any reflective surfaces to give the illusion of added space.

Source: Apartment Therapy www.apartmenttherapy.com/the-best-tips-strategies-and-i-115579

October 25, 2013

Hot Wheels

For 2012, the most stolen vehicles in the nation were (total thefts in parentheses):

1. Honda Accord (58,596)
2. Honda Civic (47,037)
3. Ford Pickup (Full Size) (26,770)
4. Chevrolet Pickup (Full Size) (23,745)
5. Toyota Camry (16,251)
6. Dodge Caravan (11,799)
7. Dodge Pickup (Full Size) (11,755)
8. Acura Integra (9,555)
9. Nissan Altima (9,169)
10. Nissan Maxima (6,947)


October 22, 2013

Six Reasons to Wear White

  1. What better way to show off those curves?
  2. It toes the line between sultry and sweet.
  3. It is hard to screw up.
  4. It gives instant polish.
  5. It’s like having your own personal spotlight.
  6. Because black is for wusses. 
Source: Women's Health. March 2009.

From Lookbook.com

October 21, 2013

Is white a color?

If your favorite color is white,
  • You are neat and immaculate in your appearance, in the presentation of your home and in your car, almost to the point of being fanatical.
  • You have impeccable standards of cleanliness and hygiene and you expect others to adhere to your high standards.
  • You are far-sighted, with a positive and optimistic nature.
  • You are well-balanced, sensible, discreet and wise.
  • You are cautious, practical and careful with money.
  • You think carefully before acting - you are definitely not prone to impulsive behavior.
  • You tend to have a great deal of self control.
  • You are confident, poised and self-assured when at your most positive, but can also be very choosy and fastidious when the mood strikes.
  • You can be very critical of yourself and others (in your need for perfection) - but you try to be fair and impartial as well.
  • You are self-sufficient and a loner - you don't want or need help from anyone. However, you may also experience times of loneliness because of this trait.
  • You may be wishing to create simplicity in your life - perhaps a wish to re-create your childhood, lost youth and happier times in your past life.
  • You can be quite sexually prudish with your need for self-control and perfection.
  • You hide your flaws from others to give an impression of perfection.
  • You may appear to be shy, but you do have strong beliefs about most things and love the opportunity to air those beliefs.
  • The challenge for you is to be open-minded and flexible and to communicate your needs and desires.
Strangely, all of the above is true about me.

October 20, 2013

Nina Garcia’s LOOKBOOK: What to Wear for Every Occasion

Lately, I've been somewhat obsessed with Project Runway.  I do not simply watch Season 12 episodes, but try to take in as many past seasons as possible.  The runway shows towards the end of each episode are priceless in more ways than one.  One of the judges on this show is Nina Garcia, a well-known fashion journalist and critic, who shares with me a birthday and with my mother a name.  Of course, Nina has written a book, a lookbook to be exact.  Hard to imagine a “lookbook” without pictures to look at, but here it goes.

“Nina Garcia’s LOOKBOOK: What to Wear for Every Occasion” is designed to be your bedroom dresser book (as opposed to a coffee table book).  Yes, keep it as close to your walk-in closet as possible, or better yet - keep it IN your closet.  It is a guide on…wait for it…. what to wear for every occasion! It is broken down into sections - work, dating, day, night, holidays, life events (are they not all life events?), weddings, and dream travel.

Most of them I skipped, of course.  I already know what she’s going to say in the “What to Wear on the Average Workday” chapter (page 22) – button-downs, trousers, suits, black pumps, trench coat...  At least we are allowed to look at this one as a challenge. 

I also skipped the whole dating and weddings sessions – I am pretty sure men like us best, when we are not wearing anything at all.  However, for some such chapters as “What to Wear After You’ve Been Cruelly Dumped” (page 76) or “What to Wear When Meeting Your Significant Other’s Children” (page 92) may prove to be useful.  I also didn’t bother with the chapters of “What to Wear When You Are Getting Your Hair Done” (page 105) and “What to Wear to Therapy” (page 120).  Seriously, Nina?  

Did not read “What to Wear to Meet a Potential Surrogate” (page 242) and “What to Wear to a Parent/Teacher Meeting” (page 253) for obvious reasons…  However, I did read such chapters as "What to Wear When Shopping" (page 100) and "What to Wear to Go Dancing" (page 168) out of sheer curiosity.  I mean, people do do the strangest things.  

In fact, the only chapters I found to be stimulating for me (I can’t even say “applicable”) were in the Holidays section.  The author included descriptions and history of some traditions, which were nice to learn about in a condensed format.  Another thing that I really like in the book were the quotations.  I treasure clever, meaningful sayings.  It truly is a talent to be able to express a novel in one short sentence.  So I will leave you with the one I absolutely adore.

You can have anything you want in life if you dress for it.” – Edith Head

Source: Nina Garcia’s LOOKBOOK: What to Wear for Every Occasion.  Nina Garcia. 

October 14, 2013

RANDOM WORD: Clairvoyance


  1. The supposed power to see objects or events that cannot be perceived by the senses. 
  2. Acute intuitive insight or perceptiveness. 

Source: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/clairvoyance

October 13, 2013

Men's Health: January/February 2008

What we gonna right here is go back...way back...back in time...

I do believe that Woman's Health is the best health and fitness magazine for women out there, as I subscribe on and off.  Thus, it is only logical that the Men's Health must be the best health mag for men, right? So yes, I read Men's Health whenever (and wherever) I can get my hands on it.  This time I got my hands on the Jan/Feb 2008 issue.

  • About 2% of population is born with an abnormal aortic valve, and this condition is passed on within families (pg 22).
  • To prevent rust, apply a light coat of petroleum jelly to screws and lug nuts before tightening.  Removal will be easier, too.  (pg 30)
  • When pumping gas, set the trigger speed to slow, not fast.  Fewer vapors will translate into more gas in your tank.  (pg 30)
  • Make sure that your 3-day disaster preparedness stash contains food that you will actually want to eat. Also include 3 gallons of water per person (pg 32). 
  • 30% of colon cancer cases are not linked to genetics (pg 34). 
  • 33% of Americans feel that they are under extreme stress (pg 36)
  • Alcohol can temporarily handicap your hearing.  When alcohol content increased to 0.08, hearing threshold decreases by an average of 15 decibels - the equivalent of stuffing cotton in your ears. (pg 36). 
  • 53% of average person's worst memories are directly related to a romantic relationship (pg 37).
  • 64% of women admit to "sexually teasing" a man (pg 37).
  • Men are less likely than women to believe that past arguments predict future problems (pg 37).  Tease on, ladies, tease on.  ;)
  • Women who watch X-rated films have better sex (pg 37).
  • On page 38 we discover that "eating tomatoes may decrease your risk of colon cancer", "folate keeps your mind young", "black tea reduces the glycemic index of a meal", "amaranth is higher in fiber and protein than rice", and that 18% of all home cooked meals are prepared by men.  
  • "Coffee can keep your arteries from clogging.  While analyzing the cholesterol levels of 10 coffee drinkers, Swiss scientists found that LDL particles soak up java's antioxidants.  As a result, the LDL is 20% less likely to become an oxidized form of the bad cholesterol that develops into artery-clogging plaque" (pg 40).  I've always said coffee is the ultimate health food. 
  • The best combination for weight loss and building muscles = lifting weights + low-carb diet (pg 42).
  • The performance of NFL players decreased by 33% after returning from an ACL injury (pg 44).
  • The cost of running shoes does not always translate into their value (pg 44).  
  • 17% decrease in muscle power after 4 weeks of inactivity (pg 46).
  • Research shows that a hearty breakfast keeps you satisfied for a long time, leading to reduced calorie consumption through the rest of the day (pg 60). 
  • A to-do list for making more effective to-do lists: 1. Put it in writing; 2. Make it specific and measurable; 3. Put a date on it; 4. Phrase it positively; 5. Make it realistic; 6. Keep entries short and separate.  (pg 131)
  • 53% of men have checked their email standing at a urinal (pg 152). 
The best article in this issue was "Six Women You Need To Meet" (pg 102). 

There are a couple of crazy things they put in in there tho:
  • Apparently, making lists sets men apart from women.  Hello! Am I not making one right now?
  • You can definitely tell stuff about a woman by her bra.  Hmmm....maybe what she is planning to wear it under? 
  • Wear a cardigan. A cardigan on a men?  That's just plain wrong.  Plus, do you really want to channel a Kanye?
Source: Men's Health Magazine.  January/February 2008 www.menshealth.com