Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Linkfest: Holiday Edition

Peanut and I have been traveling, visiting and otherwise making merry this holiday season and I have to say it's been lovely. The $3 gift challenge was a lot of fun and we got and gave some fantastic gifts for such a small price. This is something I will keep in mind for the future - if there's creativity and thought involved, gifts can cost less than a cup of coffee!

In observance of the holidays, I have been taking a lot of time off from the internet - no tweeting, writing posts, or otherwise spending time plugged in. It's been really nice to "mark all as read" without even a twinge of guilt.

Even so, I've managed to collect a couple of links that I wanted to share.

Peanut and I have been talking about how to pay off our mortgage (because paying the minimum forever isn't an option) and this might be one way to do it: Frugal Babe and her husband are putting the extra into a bond fund to use as an extra emergency fund. Our focus is on our student loans at first, because they have a higher interest rate, but once those are gone, we'll shift to extra on the mortgage - and this might be a way to do that.

A great rundown on 5 myths of T&E deductions. I would clarify one thing - none of these items are deductible if you were reimbursed by your employer. I saw one of my former colleagues learn that lesson the hard way.

Peanut teases me about this a lot: when free is too expensive. "Just because it's free doesn't mean you need it!" I'm a sucker for free samples, programs where I test out products, surveys for tiny cash payments, and so on. I need to remind myself that sometimes free just isn't worth it!

Target date funds have much higher fees than other funds - hmmm. Most of my retirement savings are in target date funds, which I thought compared favorably to other options...but I think maybe I need to take another look.

The Money Pros Index Fund challenge (via Debt Free by Thirty) looks like fun! I've signed up, and my picks are Chipotle, Starbucks, and Ecolab, a cleaning supplies company.

Fabulously Broke asks, "Are you upgrading your lifestyle or spending for quality?" They're not mutually exclusive, but they can be hard to tell apart.

Drive a free car on your next road trip! Completely ignoring my advice from the "when free is too expensive" item above, I think this is so incredibly cool, and I'm totally looking into it the next time we travel.

Consumerist lists ingredient substitutions for cooking or baking. Did you know any of these?

The Happiness Project on goals vs. resolutions. It's a good distinction and one that I will be making when I post my 2012 resolutions later this week.

Did you see anything good around the blogosphere in the last week or so? Share links in the comments!


1 comment:

  1. My employer sponsored 401k plan has target date funds with higher fees than the index funds, so I had to "create my own" with index funds. I'm not sure if that is true for vanguard funds. Let us know if you make any changes based on this info

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