Author Archives: frugalfelicity

Top books that have saving tips

top books on saving money

Just the other day I was browsing the Internet and came across a list of books on saving money. I made it a point to order some of them as I am obsessed with finances. I’ll now list the 3 top books on saving money that I read.

(1) It’s Your Money: Becoming a Woman of Independent Means – This book by Gail Vaz Oxlade has really uncanny tips to save money. It has guide for almost all ages and stages of your career. A must read and the reason it is number one in my top books is its simple language and practical tips.

(2) The Power to Prosper: 21 Days to Financial Freedom – This book by Michelle Singletary talks about financial fast, a concept of going on a 21-day spending diet. This method can really help you take control of your finances by learning new things over those 21 days. A must read if you are facing financial problems.

(3) Your Credit Score, Your Money and What’s at Stake – This book by Liz Pulliam Weston talks about credit scores and how to manage them. The tips and tricks written in this book really work. A must have book.

Are you familiar with what SSL Certificates do?

I talk a lot about online shopping, but do we also pay required attention to how safe our information (personal as well as financial) is when we register on a website and swipe our credit card?

security when shopping online

Since few years, internet security has become a major issue for the website owners. Every website owner wishes to provide the best in market security to its users. And this is where SSL certificates have come into the picture. Webmasters as well as the visitors feel more secure psychologically when they see the green padlock icon on their browsing windows. SSL certificates are no doubt very crucial to the entire web encryption system. Encryption of the URLs and internet traffic makes internet browsing much easier and safer. The SSL certificate encryption not only filters your search but also provides a safe passage for all confidential communications.

Over the years many questions on the necessity, validation and security levels of SSL certificates have been raised. This poses a threat to the global use of the SSL certificates and its importance. Listed below are some common myths related to these security certificates and the security they offer in the cyber industry:

  • Myth: SSL certificates are very costly
    not all the certificates are same and of same price! SSL certificates are not expensive. A wide range of certificates are available in the markets that are used for different purposes. Their cost also varies with the levels of security they offer and applications they support. A simple domain validation SSL certificate only costs a couple of bucks. With Social networking sites like Facebook making it compulsory to adopt the https:// URL for setting up all the applications, SSL certificate sales have alleviated.

 

  • Myth: All certificates are similar
    the diversity of the SSL certificates issued by the Certificate Authority council has been questioned many times. The fact is SSL certificates differ in the type of validation they offer. Some certificates secure e-commerce transactions while some protect the web applications from getting tempered. SSL certificates authenticate the e-mail exchanges.

 

  • Myth: SSL certificates are not reliable
    in past years, SSL certificates have proved themselves to be the most reliable and robust form of cryptography systems. They offer high-end security without compromising with the quality. Also, their protocols are highly encrypted and can’t be broken into by a mere hacker.

 

  • Myth: SSL is out-dated and vulnerable to risks
    the truth is nothing is as scalable and trustworthy as the SSL certificates. CAs has even made various collaborations with browsers to enhance the security levels.

 

  • Myth: need for separate IP address for each sub-domain
    Incorrect, the fact is you only need an SSL certificate for a single domain and all the entire sub-domains coming under it are covered along.

Saving at Supermarkets

Saving at Supermarket

Super markets are the places where we buy most of our house hold things. There are offers and more offers and we end up buying more from the supermarket. Not only we buy more of grocery than what is required, we also buy other things we crave for like chocolate. It adds to the budget without us realizing, and the money is spent. Next month again this happens and again we spend more. When I calculated the total extra that we spend in a Supermarket on things we do not require it amounted to a whopping 4000 Euros. Well I took lessons and went to build a strategy as I cannot avoid supermarkets. This strategy has been in place for six months and I have saved close to 1500 Euros if not more.

  • Made List of wanted articles – The basic thing I started was to make a list of things I wanted and sticking to it. It made a lot of difference as I was buying only what I required rather than what the supermarket was offering.
  • Limited my visits – I started to go to the supermarket once a month and if required a second time. This resulted in buying less extra things and buying in bulk which cost me less.
  • Buying Vegetables and eggs from Farmers’ market –  I have been buying vegetables and eggs from farmers market and not supermarket. I get them fresh and they cost less of course.

Home Wine..

Home Wine Making Spurred on by Arrival of Friends

Sometimes I think my ideas towards saving money are worth sharing just because of the turn of events. Recently long-lost friends announced they were in town and were paying us a visit. They’re wine lovers and because I have already tasted some wine made locally and it happened to be good, I decided to save money on buying bottles and make my own wine.  In making red wine for instance, it is important that the sugar content of the juice be between 18 and 25% . Less sugar and the wine is thin and sour, more and the fermentation becomes erratic and may be incomplete so that some sugar is left in the wine.
shop

Don’t try making wine unless you have the right equipment and ingredients.  You will need to invest in a basic wine kit. This is perfect because with it you can make up to 30 bottles. Believe me, being frugal can sometimes give you lots of fun, just like this wine making hobby of mine. Delicious, friends and family can’t believe the difference, and if you follow direction carefully, you’ll get pretty good results. You’ll be able to enjoy your evening drink and not have to worry about the soaring wine prices.

Frugal Shopping Gets You Great Getaways

With grown up kids, at last my husband and I are starting to get around a bit. We’re traveling a bit more and having a whale of a time. People always say ‘Felicity, you’ve been so frugal all your life, with the cost of living rising, how do you do it’? I’ve already told you I love comparing prices. I’ve discovered travel websites where you can cut costs and travel far cheaper. These sites let you search everywhere and they list the cheapest flights from your local airport.
frugal
You can actually see flight prices for instance for an entire year. With no more kids in the house we don’t have to travel over weekends and school holidays and this makes a massive impact on flight prices.

Not only that, when you bid on accommodation, you can actually get some real bargains without having to give up on luxury either. By using site such as Priceline for instance, you can bid low and the fun part comes from waiting to see if you were the lucky bidder to get yourself an awesome getaway at a fraction of the price.

Everybody has well got their own travel styles to make travel more easier, quicker and affordable and if you’ve got some worthwhile cheap travel secrets, than I’d love for you to share them here.

Challenges of e-shopping

Online Shopping

Online Shopping

 

Many people find it easy to order everything from the internet. However I am not that comfortable with the option. Yes it gives flexibility and you can buy at lower price, but somehow I do not trust the medium. I will share with you today the difficulty I faced which led to my current state of mind. Mind it was not once.There was lots of talk about payday loans

  • You do not get what you see – Internet shopping is different from physical shopping. The article may look great on your computer screen but might not be that good. I once ordered a dress for myself. It was pink and I loved the shade as it looked on my computer screen. But when the parcel arrived, and I opened it a rag came out. I kept calling the customer service but to no avail. This never happens in a physical shop.
  • Matter of size – The biggest challenge faced  is of size. The sizes vary and sometimes you get too small or too big size. Hence articles that we wear, are very difficult to buy online. My husband faced this problem when he ordered a pair of office shoes. The web shop send a shoe which was toddlers‘. God I will never buy a shoe online.
  • Payment system – Even after so much of development of online payment systems, failures happen. Once a failed payment took 30 days to return in my account. This is really painful.

After so many experiences, I finally decided that I will shop in normal shops by going there. I love the process.

Freedom from Dandruff

 

Photo credit: Internet Archive Book Images / Foter / No known copyright restrictions

Photo credit: Internet Archive Book Images / Foter / No known copyright restrictions

Dandruff is the last thing I want to see, but it happens. My bouts of dandruff usually happen during winter, caused by the general dryness that sends me hunting lotion, on a regular basis. I’m more concerned if dandruff develops during the warmer seasons because fungus is usually the cause. I tried special shampoos, but found they made matters worse. Yes, my scalp tingled but, other than that, the dandruff remained. Fortunately, I discovered two effective home remedies for dandruff.

Find an Old Fashion Mouthwash

You can’t use just any mouthwash, and using it in your mouth won’t treat dandruff. You need a mouthwash containing alcohol. Simply shampoo your hair as you usually do, then rinse your hair with the alcohol mouthwash. Rinse the  mouthwash away, then use your regular conditioner. I can almost see the little question marks appear over your head, but the alcohol in mouthwash keeps fungus, a common cause of warm weather dandruff, from growing! Use the alcohol mouthwash rinse every time you wash your hair, until your dandruff disappears. Each case of dandruff is different, so you’ll need to use your own good judgement to determine how long you’ll need to use it.

Taking Care of The Itch

Dandruff flakes are embarrassing, but the itching is terrible. Instead of trying to use the ends of pencils to scratch your scalp,hopefully unnoticed, break open an aloe vera leaf and massage the gel-like fluid on your scalp, then leave it for 20 minutes. It soothes, has antibacterial properties, and promotes healing.


These remedies are less expensive than many of the medicated shampoos on the market Used faithfully, your dandruff should clear up before you know it!

 

Need Pampering?

 

Get help redesigning old clothing.

Photo credit: George Eastman House / Foter / No known copyright restrictions

 

When you spend most of your shopping hours calculating discounts and comparing, you have a hard time enjoying the experience. Yes, your budget isn’t weeping tears of distress. Yes, you only buy what you need. Pat yourself on the back, you are doing great! With the dust of holiday shopping all but settled, you can do something that you probably do only once or twice a year.

Saving pads your bank account, but it takes something truly special to reward yourself. When you are looking for that special little something, check your balance and decide how much of it you can spend, then spend it! There are few rules governing how you reward yourself, but you can also help someone in the process.

Etsy shops are great for the double bladed reward maneuver. You can buy something spectacular and one of a kind, and reward a needy crafter or artist while doing so! Better  yet, find a new designer or have a new designer redesign your existing wardrobe! You actually kill 3 birds with this single stone as you cull your wardrobe at the same time.

Once you have your reward, don’t forget to wear it, or use it where everyone can fuss over it!

 

Healing Winter Skin from Kitchen Cabinets

Fill your bottles with home made skin care potions.

If you are like me, the skin on your face and hands takes a beating during the winter months. Dry skin makes you look older, but severely dry skin cracks and leaves you open to infection. I have tried commercial hand lotions and expensive facial creams, only to find my skin getting drier. I’ve grown tired of buying pricey failures, so I’ve decided to try making my own skin treatment.

First, I visited Active Formulas. My sister-in-law suggested this site but it carries ingredients you see on pricey commercial products.  Since I am just starting my diy skincare journey, I’ll save this site and use Natural-Organic-Products-and Recipes, instead. It is less overwhelming for beginners, like me.

I plan on looking through several sites, later. Buying every ingredient, before actually using my homemade moisturizer, will take too long and be too expensive. I will focus ingredients that appear in several recipes, then buy emulsifying wax and lecithin to bind those ingredients to make the cream. As I grow more comfortable, I’ll slowly add more ingredients to my arsenal, but I’ll already have enough to make my first moisturizer. My kitchen cabinets are already stocked with grape seed, coconut and olive oils.

The most important things I have learned about saving money are planning and patience. As long as my initial cost leads to greater savings, I can accept spending now to save later! Are you tired of commercial skin creams that barely work, if at all? How do you plan to have better skin by the end of winter?

Holiday Shopping Takes Off!

Sparkling Christmas trees set the mood for shopping.

For the first time in years, I am having a stress free shopping experience. In previous years we went from shop to shop looking for the perfect gift for each of the 20 to 30 people on our gift giving list. This year, we divided our shopping list into “physical store” and “internet” columns, with the “internet” column being our focus. Doing this cut our real life shopping time by more than half. We’ll save time by doing most of the shopping at home. Jack will stop by stores during his evening commute, but he will have phoned ahead to have his choices waiting. All he’ll need to do is pay and pick up! This also means I get to sit in front of the screen and compare, to my heart’s content, anytime I feel like it.

We look like a small family, but once the uncles, aunts, cousins, and grands are added, 30 is a conservative number! My favorite shopping is for Jack’s teenaged nieces, so I have spent time at the Simply Be website. The company carries an impressive range of sizes, and I was surprised to find clothing that even I can wear. If I decide to splurge, I’ll look through Joe Brown’s to find something special for the eldest niece. By the way, Simply Be has great discounts in their outlet pages!

So, I’m off to choose some trendy sweaters for myself and my sister-in-law. How will you save time, and money, while holiday shopping?

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