The Story of Bottled Water

Let’s re-examine the bottled water trend and consider using our good ‘ole tap water again.  I was raised on tap water and I think I turned out OK.

The Story of Bottled Water


Grocery Stores Trying to Manage Inflation


I ran across an interesting article in the Seattle Times today where the CEO of SuperValu, the company which operates Albertsons, Jewel-Osco, Acme and other chains, says, “"This is going to be a challenging year going forward to manage inflation," Supervalu CEO Craig Herkert told analysts Tuesday. "It's just a fact and we believe these inflationary measures are going to impact consumers."

I’m glad I’ve started to stock up when there are sales.  My sister and I are also getting into clipping coupons.  There are a lot of savings to be had out there if you carefully watch for sales and then add in coupons.  I was amazed that at her last trip to the store, she came home with Health Choice Steamers that she got for only $1 each.  She also ended up getting jars of roasted almonds for free!  Now, that’s shopping smart!

Image: Suat Eman / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Virginia to Study Using Gold Instead of $$?

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read an article from www.zerohedge.com from 1/12/2011 that said that the Commonwealth of Virginia introduced a House Resolution (#557) to establish a subcommittee to: “"to study whether the Commonwealth should adopt a currency to serve as an alternative to the currency distributed by the Federal Reserve System in the event of a major  breakdown of the Federal Reserve System."

See the full article here.

My shock became greater when I saw that Utah was also examining the use of gold.  An article from The Salt Lake Tribune stated, "…requiring government agencies to accept gold for transactions, and creating a parallel monetary policy for intrastate commerce tied to the price of gold.”

It went on to say that, “Under the legislation that has been drafted, Utah residents could mint their own gold or silver coins, a storehouse would be created to stockpile the precious metal and the Utah Defense Force, an arcane state militia that may be called and armed by the governor, would be responsible for securing the inventories.”  Wow!

Other similar articles:

  • South Carolina lawmaker introduces a bill to replace federal currency
  • Idaho – silver medallions, minted by the state, may be used to jump start their economy, and used instead of the U.S. dollar.



Fun with Food Storage

I’ve written a lot lately about various events that should get us all interested in in preparing for events out of our control.  I personally believe that our economy is likely the biggest critical issue we face that will hit us all in our bank accounts, and soon.

To that end, I believe stocking up our pantries to help us get through a crisis is a good insurance policy to have.  I’ve heard several stories of late how people who had stocked up on foods were so very glad they did when faced with a layoff or pay cuts.  Add in that there could be natural disasters or even high levels of inflation that would make having extra food around helpful.  Now that fuel prices are beginning to rise again, having extra food on hand means it will be easier to shift funds to that expenditure without impacting our budgets too much.

I have been looking into tools, websites, videos, and blogs that deal with the food preparation and found one video from KSL (October 2009) I’d like to share with you to help get us in the mood. 

Whether you choose to stock up several weeks or several months, these ladies have a great system set up.  You can visit their Food Storage Made Easy website and get lots of ideas. I particularly like their 10 baby steps list.


Anyone Still Need Convincing?

If anyone out there still isn’t convinced that there is a world-wide currency crisis that will eventually hit us personally in our wallets and possibly move our country towards the solution  of a new world currency, must have their heads in the sand.
Here’s just articles since the first of the year:

  1. Reuters, 1/7 – Euro Crisis
  2. Google News, 1/7 – Portugal’s Debt Worsens
  3. Bloomberg, 1/5 - World Food Prices to Soar
  4. Yahoo Finance, 1/5 – Rising Asset Prices Cannibalize U.S. Growth
  5. Goldsilver.com, 1/3 – Gold and silver crushed paper currency
  6. Los Angeles Times, 1/7 – Rising gas prices, remember 2008?
So what do we do?  Do what your grandparents did years ago.  Start a large food pantry so you can stock up on items at lower prices today.  Buy two tubes of toothpaste instead of 1, buy two bags of sugar instead of just one.  Use coupons and get two of some things in order to stock up.
If gasoline prices surge and the budget becomes tight, it will really help if you’ve stocked up on foods and can keep your food budget in line even with rising prices sure to come this next year.
Stock up!


10 Things Your Grandparents Know About Money

My dad sent me an email with the above title that was from an article over two years ago on www.thestreet.com.  Even though it is old in terms of internet news, the message still fits. 

10 Things Your Grandparents Know About Money (That You Don't)

By Jeffrey Strain  05/08/08 - 11:22 AM EDT

The U.S. may not technically be in a recession. After all, the U.S. Commerce Department says the economy grew at a 0.6% pace in the first quarter.

But most people look at things more like legendary investor Warren Buffett, who defined a recession as when "people are doing less well than they were three months, six months or eight months earlier."

For most economists it is no longer whether there is going to be a recession, but what type of recession it is going to be: short recessions like the one from 1990 to 1991 and the one from March to November 2001, or something like the Great Depression.

No matter which it ends up being, one of the best places to look for sound advice is from those people who have survived the worst of economic times - namely your grandparents.

Here are 10 ideas you may want to take from them:

10. Frugality Is Not a Bad Word

There was a time when a person who was frugal was looked upon with esteem rather than someone without the means to buy more. Many people seem to equate frugality with "cheapness," but that couldn't be further from the truth. Being frugal is simply getting the most out of what you have and purchase, and not purchasing things that you really don't need.

While your grandparents learned frugality during the hard times, many of them continued to practice it even when times got better, which helped them build wealth. Learning to be frugal could help a lot of people who haven't learned to live within their means.

9. Use What You Have

In a consumer society, whatever problem you may have can always be solved by buying something else. If something breaks, go out and buy a new one. If something isn't exactly right, go buy something that is. In your grandparents' time, when something broke, they first took a look to see if it could be fixed.

If it couldn't be fixed, before it ended up in the trash can, they would consider whether it could still be useful for something else. There is no reason to go out and spend money on something new if you can get the same thing accomplished with the things that you already have.

8. Doing It Yourself Is the Way to Go

When it comes to fixing things, the first people that your grandparents looked at were themselves. Instead of calling someone to fix something that broke, they fixed it on their own most of the time.

In a society where we now hire people to do most basic repair and maintenance, it's important to remember that most repairs aren't nearly as difficult as they may appear and that you can do much of it on your own with a how-to book and patience.

7. Things Have More Than One Use

People tend to buy stuff with a specific purpose in mind and use it exclusively for that intended purpose. What your grandparents knew is that most things can have multiple uses throughout their useful life. That T-shirt can become a night shirt when the collar gets worn and can't be worn outside, and then a painting shirt when it starts to get holes and eventually rags when the holes get too big.

6. Debt Is to Be Avoided

In the age of credit cards, where spending what you don't have now is encouraged left and right, it's hard to believe there was a time when people actually believed that debt was to be avoided, but those are the words that your grandparents lived by. If they didn't have the money, then they would simply need to figure out a different plan on how to get what they needed. It might be borrowing it from a friend, saving up money or finding something that could be used instead. Going into debt to get it accomplished was not an option.

5. Save for Rainy Days

As many people are finding out, rainy days eventually come. Your grandparents were well aware of this and specifically put aside money for these rainy days. It's now what is commonly referred to as an emergency fund and something that comes in quite handy when your financial plans don't go exactly as you imagined they would.

4. Used Can Be Just as Good as New

This concept isn't completely foreign even to today's generation. The notion that buying a quality two- to three-year-old car has become basic mainstream financial advice when it comes to car ownership. Your grandparents knew that just because something happened to be pre-owned doesn't make it something to be dismissed as unworthy. They also know that this concept doesn't stop with cars and can be expanded to almost any other area where a second-hand market is available.

3. Functional Trumps Fashion:

When it comes to making purchases, your grandparents knew that it wasn't what the device looked like, but what it could do that mattered. It was much more important to buy something that did what needed to be done regardless of what it actually looked like. That Rolex may look great, but it doesn't tell time any better than a standard watch bought at the local discount store. Learning to buy for function rather than looks is a great way to save money.

2. Bargains Are to Be Sought-After

When it was time to purchase something, your grandparents didn't just go out an get it that day. They took the time to look for a bargain. That meant doing research and waiting until the price was right rather than pulling out a credit card and buying it even when they didn't have the money. Bargains take planning and time to find, but when they are found, you know you have gotten a great deal.

1. Homemade Cookies Are Delicious

In a society where everything is pre-made and sold for convenience, it may be hard to remember the last time you had a meal made from scratch. What your grandparents knew was that not only is it less expensive to cook this way, the resulting meal is also a lot more delicious. Think of it this way; would you ever consider trading in a plate of your grandmother's homemade cookies for any store bought brand?

While the way that your grandparents handled money may seem unsophisticated with all the financial tools that are available today, the basics of living below their means, saving for a rainy day, getting an education and investing in their future are values that a lot of people could financially benefit from today.