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Blog: If Your Money Ain't Happy, Ain't Nobody Happy
Money "Wrap-Up", 5 Simple, Sensible & Smart Year-End Tips!

Trying to stay on budget during the hectic holidays? I'm there with you.  I want to go and spend at every Bazaar and sale.   If you've read my blog I have already gotten some pretty serious shopping done already but now its starting to get down to crunch time.  Here are some items that should be on your holiday list for your wish list or to do list. 
  1. Quicken to keep track of your finances for the coming year.  The best time to start an easy money management program like this is at the end of the year, so now is the time.  You can get your bank accounts set up and start entering in your payables for the month.  You'll be ready and set up to start tracking your finances in January and have your balances from this past year.  Really this program is easy to set up and use.  It's a great time of year to buy it as well since it is on sale at many Office Supply Stores.
  1. If you have as hard of time as I do during the holiday shopping season of finding everything you would love to have too, then treat yourself next year with this trick.  Get those "lifestyle coupons" I blogged about in order and buy yourself gift cards from the stores you love to shop at when you have a little extra cash or can't find what your looking for while your shopping.  Save them and use them when you just want to burn some money.  We all have those moments…I don't shop much during the year so the holidays are a time I have to control myself.  Next year maybe I'll have some gift cards saved up so I can have some fun buying myself a few new things while gift shopping.  If you don't have money to spend on yourself this year then here is a solution….read the next tip, #3.
  1. While your shopping for everyone else, make YOUR gift list .  Yep, what a great time to let others know what you want, where it is and even how much it is so they can pick and choose how much they want to spend.  I like to get gifts that I need or want.  I would rather have a $10 gift card from one of my favorite places than someone feeling like they need to spend $50 on something that they are not sure I would like. 
  1. Concerned that you will spend too much on your gift buying?  Instead of using your credit card buy a credit card gift card.  Yes there might be a small fee but I guarantee it will be less than the interest you would accrue on your credit card.  You can even get these easily at the mall.  Their gift cards can be used anywhere and I don't think they have fees.  Get some cash and buy your "credit card" gift card and have fun spending without breaking the bank!
  1. One last money tip for you for your money wrap-up this holiday season.  If money is tight like it is for so many, think of gifts that you can make or gift certificates that you can give to those you love that would be a labor of love.  My younger sister-in-law gave all of us her own "massage coupons" to use during the year.  She is a teenager and didn't have much money to spend but she always gave the best neck massages.  When we had a family get together  we could give her a coupon and have a massage.  It was thoughtful and a true gift, the gift of herself.  Be creative not just expensive.  People tend to like gifts that still have some "personality" and there are plenty of projects out there to personalize gifts for friends and family.  
Simple and sensible tips can make your money go further and finances better off for the coming year.  There are all kinds of coupons and coupon codes your can acquire as well by just googling for coupon discounts or codes.  Saving money is always in style.  It's time to be thankful for what we have and what we can give to others.
As always, happy shopping AND saving!

posted on: 11/19/2008 11:30:00 AM by Triste Horrell
category: Finances

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If Your Money Ain't Happy, Ain't Nobody Happy

by Triste Horrell

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About Triste:

Being an organizing expert makes one want to be a "showroom" in all areas of life. However reality can hit hard when you're a mother of small children and a military wife and own an organzing business. Of course Triste would like to have a picture perfect Better Home and an even Better Garden. Throw a Pottery Barn in the backyard for exceptional creative time to become the wiz-woman for all the ideas and inventions that the world could not live without. But Triste has settled on the fact of telling herself "I can be perfect in my mind and no one can mess up my space there!" In reality Triste is very self-motivated and has true business accomplishments like having SYSTEMIZE since 1997, the first home and business organizing firm in the state of South Carolina. She has been repeatedly recognized in her Greenville, SC area for her organizing expertise and makeovers on local NBC and FOX news, Greenville News, local magazines such as Greenville Magazine and Upstate Parent and NPR radio. She has turned people's lives around by focusing on what she calls the "four building blocks of being organized" consisting of space, time, financial and personal. This is even represented in her business logo. "That's what I'm in business for, turning people's lives around!" Also applying her popular 3 Steps to Systemize have not only organized her clients but KEPT them organized for years.

Triste's Website:


Downtime Activities

  • Reading Magazines
  • Spending time at our cottage
  • Keeping our Westie pretty
  • Putting tealights around after the kids are in bed
  • Adventures with my awesome hubby
  • Making microwave smores...just for me
    1 graham cracker, broken in half 1 small piece of chocolate 1 big marshmellow On one side of cracker put piece of chocolate and marshmellow on top. Place in microwave and heat for approx. 17 seconds (while cooking replace marshmellow on top of chocolate if needed). Put other half of cracker on top, eat and enjoy and watch out for oozing chocolate!

My Organizing Tool-Box

  • Time - Outlook
    This is a great way to keep papers off the desk and track where you need to go, task list, jot down quick notes on the virtual "post-its, keep up with contacts in the virtual Rolodex
  • Personal Finances - Quicken
    This simple yet practical program keeps your bank accounts in tact...did I mention simple?!
  • Business Finances - QuickBooks
    I have used this program for years and have set many clients up on it. It is a must for keeping track of business transactions and keeping tax time easy...push a few buttons and out come the reports, your done and your tax preparer loves you.
  • Space - turntables
    I love these things! You can put them in cabinets, the fridge, garage, and closets. They are inexpensive, easy to find and available at any discount store and you can even find fancier ones. If you are not sure what they are, they are the white (or other fancier kinds) and spin around like a lazy susan, you can have a single or double-tier one for spices.
  • Personal - Magazines and Internet
    I love to look at magazines and the internet for good articles on personal development, pictures for decorating inspiration and fun projects to do with my family. I keep my magazine subscriptions to a minimum (3) so I can read them and enjoy each one. I look for things on some of my favorite websites for whatever fancies me at that time.
  • Online Recipe Boxes
    Use these on some of your favorite websites, bring the laptop into the kitchen while the recipe is up and you never have to have the paper clutter. One of my and my husbands favorites is Williams-Sonoma.

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