Friday, May 29, 2009

Flag Friday - Cincinnati Reds

Gotta love the Reds! (Check out the World Series pin as well.)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Complete Tightwad Gazette

I don't normally double post, but because I'm going to start posting tips and tricks from this book here, I thought I may as well copy my review on over. I love books that stimulate the mind and get your wheels turning. This is one of those books (Review taken from my book review blog):

Title: The Complete Tightwad Gazette (Vol. I)

Author: Amy Dacyczyn

Pages: 300

Genre: Personal Finance, Self-Help

Grade: B+

Synopsis: Amy Dacyczyn (aka the Frugal Zealot) published The Tightwad Gazette as a newsletter from June 1990 to December 1996. This book was created as a collection of all the tips and stories from the newsletters. It is split up into three parts (of which so far I have read only one) of about 300 pages each. The book covers ways to save money in hundreds of unique and imaginative ways.

My Review: This book has a long waiting list at the library so I was only able to cover Volume I during my allotted time. I think that it's probably for the better to split it up anyway. I really enjoyed the tips and tricks in the book and plan on utilizing many of them in my life. In fact, I'm going to try and post frugality/personal finance tips and tricks weekly on Lurp's Lounge (my regular blog). I took copious notes from this book and plan on sharing many of them with you, gentle reader. If you ever find a used copy, pick it up and it will quickly pay for itself as you practice increased frugality.

From the Book: "(p. 54) Tightwaddery without creativity is deprivation. When there is a lack of resourcefulness, inventiveness, and innovation, thrift means doing without."

"(p. 152) The manufacturing of most goods harms the environment in one way or another. The culprit is not the factory, but it is we who buy what it produces. Therefore we should think carefully about items we purchase."

"(p. 216) Jim purchased a brand-new book called How to Fix Damn Near Anything. In horror I discovered a $15.95 price tag on the inside of the jacket. Upon interrogation he confessed that he purchased it at the thrift shop for $.25." (My note: I actually purchased this book at full price for my birthday last year. How embarrassing.)

"(p. 228) So how do we sort it all out? The relationship between ethics and thrift can be summed up in just one sentence. It is wrong to save money at the expense of others. Period."

"(p. 232) The dieter will fail as long as he hates low-calorie food. The would-be athlete will fail as long as he hates exertion. The tightwad wannabe will fail as long as he views frugality as a lifestyle he has to endure, or was forced into by circumstance."

Cavs Win!

I saw this clip this morning on SportsCenter and had to pass it on.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Flag Friday - Ohio Caverns

When we lived in Ohio my family visited Ohio Caverns. It's a big underground cave system northeast of Dayton. 90% of their formations are still actively growing with the most famous one being the "Crystal King," which is almost 5' tall, 200,000 years old and one of the most perfectly formed stalactites in the world. Check out the glitter on that pennant!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

American Idol

Every year I've got to make an obligatory American Idol post. I like both Kris Allen and Adam Lambert (and I liked Danny Gokey as well). The truth is that I don't really care who wins. What I have found amazing though is how well Adam, Kris and Danny have done every single week. Alison and I look forward to watching because we never know what to expect (especially from Adam). Here are a few songs from both of them (my favorite performance of the season is the first one in queue by Kris (Falling Slowly), followed closely by Adam's performances of Ring of Fire, Mad World and One):

Huntsman to China

I think that Obama's nomination of Jon Huntsman to be ambassador to China is very shrewd. I think it's a good move and one that will benefit both of them. In my opinion, the losers are the people of the state of Utah, because Huntsman has proven to be a pretty darn good governor (and more moderate than Gary Herbert). Here's an interesting take from's First Read:
"***A-Huntsman we will go: Obama's nomination of Utah Republican Gov. Jon Huntsman to be ambassador to China seems to benefit two people: Obama and Huntsman. For Obama, it was yet another signal to independents and moderates that he's reaching across the aisle (Ray LaHood, Arlen Specter, and even the failed nomination of Judd Gregg are the other examples); it all but removed a potential 2012 challenger and an important moderate voice inside the GOP; and it showed that Obama's serious about China (Huntsman has sterling credentials -- he speaks Mandarin, did his Mormon mission in Taiwan, and served as George W. Bush's deputy U.S. trade representative). For Huntsman, the nomination gives him a job he obviously desired; it gets him out of the country at a time when his party is undergoing internecine warfare; and it possibly preps him for a presidential bid in 2016, bolstering his foreign affairs credentials. By the way, the cynical side of us is very impressed with how Obama has so cleverly tied up two of his biggest potential rivals in the future. First, he offered Hillary the plum job at the State Department, removing her as a potential obstacle from the Senate. Now he's taken Huntsman off the table for 2012."
I wanted to add the following quote from the LA Times this morning (5/20/09):
"Among the most upset over Huntsman's impending departure are Utah's embattled Democrats and their progressive allies who dread his replacement, Lt. Gov. Gary Herbert, a lawmaker about as different from the incumbent as two members of one party can be. How different? Huntsman may be the greenest Republican governor in the country, strongly advocating action to fight global warming. Herbert recently spoke at a forum hosted by the conservative Sutherland Institute which ... 'reinforced the message that global warming is not human-caused and that those who contend that it is are ignoring scientific evidence to the contrary.' David Magleby, a dean at Brigham Young University and one of Utah's most astute political observers, put it this way: 'This state will see, I think, a far more conservative agenda shared by both the governor and the Legislature than we've had in two decades. This is a sea change, not just a change from Huntsman. It's been a long time since we've had a governor as conservative as most people assume Gary Herbert will be."

Friday, May 15, 2009

Flag Friday - WPAFB Air Force Museum

We lived in Dayton, Ohio for three years when I was younger. My dad worked at WPAFB (Wright Patterson Air Force Base), which is where the Air Force headquarters are located and this museum was about 10 minutes from our house.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Salt Lake Buzz

This one might actually be worth something because the Buzz don't even exist anymore. You may have gotten the feeling that I like baseball from the last 5 pennants I've posted - which is true, but I've got a nice treat for next week - and it doesn't even have to do with baseball.