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Tips for Shopping Kids’ Consignment Sales and Mistakes to Avoid

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Yesterday I shopped at my first consignment sale of the season. I saw a lot of people make what I think is the #1 mistake of consignment sale shopping, but also learned a great new trick — both of which made me realize that I had to write this post sooner rather than later! As someone who has volunteered and shopped at over a dozen consignment sales, I’ve made a bunch of mistakes myself. Now that I have a pretty good idea of the “Do’s” and “Don’ts” of scoring big at consignment sales, Read more [...]

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STAPLES September 13: 50% off School Supplies!

Staplers, It’s a busy week at Stapler Confessions, but a slow one at Staples. If you haven’t already heard, Stapler Confessions is a top ten finalist for the People’s Choice Plutus award! The voting is still open, so if you haven’t yet cast your vote, I hope you’ll take a minute to do so. Just follow this link and enter your email address (they won’t spam you, it’s just to confirm you’re real): Vote for Stapler Confessions. Thank you for all of your support already! Back To School clearance Read more [...]

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Don’t Get Lost in Little Details {Developing Efficient Billing Systems}

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In my quest to increase my billable hours, I have identified some inefficiencies that divert my attention on a regular basis. I recently solved the email problem and have been automating bill-paying and money-saving for years. But there are still some inefficiencies that need to be cured. In particular: I get lost in the little details whenever I sort out client billing. I keep time in 6-minute increments (1/10th of an hour), and was getting out the old-fashioned calculator whenever I wanted Read more [...]

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Back to Rolling That Debt Snowball!

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We stopped our aggressive debt payoff when I was laid off in October because we were trying to make ends meet. Some months, we did; and some months, we didn’t. One month, we even made an extra payment on a student loan. One month out of ten. :/ So, we fell off the wagon and I stopped paying attention to our debt repayment goals. Truth be told, I was obsessed with debt payoff when I was working steadily. Our income was predictable and I would project what our expenses and debt payoff numbers would Read more [...]

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STAPLES September 7: Half Off Backpacks, Paper under $1 per ream

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Staplers, the Back To School sales have stopped, but we are about to enter “Free Paper Season.” This week, you can snag 15 reams for less than $1 per ream. With the end of Back To School sales means the beginning of sales on backpacks. This week, all backpacks are 50% off at Staples. If you have a preschooler now, it’s a perfect time to get his or her backpack for kindergarten next year. In the Technology section, it might be the right time to buy a computer or iPad. Staples has upped the Read more [...]

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September Financial Update: Over $1,800 in Extra Income and Increased our Net Worth by $4,500

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August was an eventful month. Mr. Stapler changing jobs sent me into a flurry of financial planning activity, from evaluating health insurance options, determining our retirement needs, sorting through what we need to save for my maternity leave, and of course revamping our budget. Then we got to go on a much-needed family vacation, which was the perfect end to the summer. In Blog news … did you notice anything new? That’s right, Stapler Confessions is a Plutus Award Finalist in two categories! Read more [...]

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Time to Get Ready for Consignment Sales

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Whether you’re clearing out your child’s toy box or buying baby gear, the end of summer is the time to get ready for fall consignment sales. If you’re a parent and haven’t already shopped a consignment sale, get ready to have your mind blown at the high quality and good condition of clothes, toys, books, and baby gear you will find for up to 70% off at semi-annual consignment sales. Traditional consignment shops will have a few of each item in stock at any given time, and you have to decide Read more [...]

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STAPLES August 31: Free pens and $100 off laptops, desktops, and tablets

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Staplers, there is a new freebie this week! Back to School deals are winding up, so it is probably your last chance to score great deals on pens, pencils, and highlighters. Although, we are getting into free paper and anti-virus software season soon. Also, now is the time to snag a discounted backpack for your scholar next year — Staples is offering 50% off backpacks. Plus, other stores will be clearancing their school supplies starting next week. BIC BOGO — Buy one packages of BIC pens, Read more [...]

Spend or Payoff?

Help me out here: Do I keep my new laptop or should I put the money towards our next student loan? In the past year, we have only made one extra payment on our student loans. Although it was significant -- $2,000 -- I am anxious to make another. Mr. Stapler got a better-paying job, so we should have the ability to make more payments. This month, I calculated that we could make an extra payment of $1,500. I was psyched. I started calculating whether we could pay off the next loan by New Years. Then Read more [...]
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A Retirement Plan When Your Employer Doesn’t Have One

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There are retirement investment options available for those of us who work for companies without retirement plans. Just because your employer doesn’t have a plan doesn’t mean you can’t. The day after Mr. Stapler’s last day at his job, I realized that he was leaving an organization that matched his 3% retirement contribution, and joining a company that offered diddlysquat. In all my various budget calculations of how his new income would impact our financial picture, I completely forgot to plan Read more [...]