Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Make Money With a Yard, Garage or Tag Sale

The good ol’ garage sale. While we don’t think it’s quite a relic yet, there is no doubt the internet has changed the way we think about reselling our household goods. Now, reselling just about anything can take place 24/7/365 through websites like Ebay and  But there is nothing like a “real” (as opposed to a “virtual”) yard, garage or tag sale to free up some much needed closet space and bring in some quick cash. But even though it’s a tried-and true method for easy money-making, there are some pitfalls. Here are some pointers to make your good ol’ garage, yard or tag sale an easy success.

Find out from your town or city if you need to get a permit in advance.

Ask if neighbors might be interested in having a sale on the same days.  This will draw more people.

Best Days are Thursday through Saturday on a non-holiday weekend.

Advertise in the local paper, online, around the neighborhood, on local bulletin boards. Be clear if you are allowing ‘EARLY BIRD” visits or not. Mention any big ticket items or special collections you may be offering.

Make sure your location is clearly visible from the street  and/or marked with something like streamers, a flag or a sign. If you use balloons, please make sure they are environmentally friendly.

Consider safety:

  • Try to not be alone, have someone else visibly on site. Never leave your items or money unattended.
  • Avoid having people come inside your home, and if anyone does need to do that, make sure they are accompanied.
  • Keep your home locked.
  • Provide as little personal information about yourself as possible.
  • Make sure all personal papers and personal records have been removed from anything you intend on selling: drawers, suitcases, boxes, file cabinets, folders, computer & mobile devices,  check inside books, magazines,etc.  You’d be surprised what may have been forgotten.
  • Make sure all bundles of clothing, all pockets, all shoes have been searched and are clear of anything that might have been stored there or have fallen in.
  • Keep the smaller more expensive items close by so you can keep a watch on them.

Don’t be a pesky seller. People like to know they have been acknowledged, but also like to feel free to consider their purchase without having to explain, be pestered by questions, or pressured to buy. A simple “Hello, let me know if I can help you.” should suffice.

Set up:

  • Arrange similar types of objects together ie: picture frames and art objects together; entertainment items like video games, VCR’s, DVD’s together; furniture together. And/or you can organize  by room, ie: kitchen items together; bedroom items together; living room furniture together.
  • Display items at table top height; this makes it easier for people to view and connect with pieces. It may be worth it to borrow or rent tables.
  • If items need to go on the ground, place them on a blanket, or sheet.
  • Have bags or boxes available for packing up and carrying out purchases.
  • Place anything children may be interested in far away from the street, and away from fragile items you may have on display.
  • Pleasant and non-intrusive music playing never hurts!
  • To avoid any hassles later on, post a clearly visible sign that says, “All Sales Final.”

Allow testing for products:

  • Have light bulbs on hand.
  • Have batteries available.
  • Have an extension cord running from the house to outside, so items can be tried out without having to bring people inside.

Does it work? You should indicate if an item is in working condition or not. Anything damaged or not in working order should be marked “as is”.

Appliances such as used kitchen equipment should be as clean as possible. If you have the product packaging, manual, directions, warranties or accessories, include them.

Clothing should be in decent shape, and CLEAN. The more accessible and identifiable, the quicker they will sell. Arrange by men’s, women’s, and children’s. Consider using the “bulk” pricing method: Have shopping bags available and mark one area of clothing, “One price for all you can fit in the bag.” You can do the same for accessories. A mirror is great to provide if you’re selling clothes, jewelry and/or accessories.

When pricing… There are opposing theories about what brings in a higher yield. One school of thought is to have everything, and we mean everything, priced with a sticker or a very clear sign. The other is to have nothing priced.  No matter which method you select, you still can negotiate, and offer to sweeten the deal by including an “extra” something they may be interested in.  Either way, make things easier by pricing in whole-dollar amounts or increments of 25-cents for easy change-making. Have plenty of small bills and coins on hand to make change.  Only accept cash, bad checks are not worth the risk.

Price Tagging Everything:

  • Having everything priced, may make it easier for you to be more firm about the listed price, but being too inflexible could cost you sales.
  • You can still take an offer or reduce the price on the spur of the moment if you feel inclined.
  • It frees up your buyers, especially those who may not be comfortable negotiating a price or making an offer.
  • It frees up your time because you don’t need to be involved with negotiations on every single transaction.

Price Tagging Nothing:

  • You have complete and total flexibility.
  • Let the buyer make the initial offer. More often than not, it will come in higher than what you probably would have marked it.

Bundle the bulk. This is an effective way of clearing out the smaller items or clutter quickly, and it works with either pricing technique:  group similar objects together and sell as a bundle for one flat rate. If you are not specifying prices put a sign up that says “Entire contents of this box all sold together as one. Name your price”

A spin on that is to have a big box or blanket or table full of little items. Hand people a bag or a box and say “Fill your bag from anything on this table for $5.00″

Another option is to price the items on the table at the same price, “All items on this table, $2. each”

Designate anything that is special, unique, unusual, historic, or has a noteworthy story attached to it. Even if you are not price marking, you need to make sure people are aware of your knowledge on the items and what makes them of value.

Sentimental or emotional attachment to an object? Some questions to ask yourself: How long has it been since I’ve even thought about this? If I took a picture of it would having the photo allow me to still retain the memory and feel the connection? While you are organizing before the sale, try placing those items onto a “maybe” table, and keep re-visiting it over a few days prior to the sale. Eventually several items may end up migrating to the “sale” table over those few days.

What you don’t sell, donate; remember to ask for a receipt so you may claim your donation as a deduction at tax time.  Find out ahead of time BEFORE the day of your sale: where you will donate, if you will need to pack up the items to send or to drop off, or if they will come to pick up your items. If you are expecting pick up, you will have to make an appointment for that ahead of time.  You won’t want to end up with a pile of giveaway items sitting in your driveway for two weeks in the rain while you wait for pick up or try to locate a place to donate (Trust us, we learned that the hard way). If you are looking for donation options, please consider our suggestions:

  • Clothing: Men’s clothing: Women’s clothing: All types of clothing: Good Will Industries
  • Prescription eyeglasses can be reused. There are many local retail shops and organizations that will accept them; you can find a good list of resources in this article from
  • Books: If a local school or library is out of the question: accepts all types of books.  For children’s books only:
  • Musical Instruments: If you cannot locate a local school or music program willing to accept your used musical instruments, consider which accepts musical instruments, sheet music and music books.
  • For just about any and everything: Vietnam Veterans of America will pick up your donation in several states across the continental US.

More yard and garage sale pointers in these videos:

And more the Garage/Yard Sale  Tips in our Channel : House & Home.

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9 Lucky Links to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Style and On Budget

4 Leaf Clovers - 9 Lucky Links to Celebrate St. Patrick's in Style and On Budget

4-Leaf Clovers found in Jamie’s yard in 2002.

Looking for fun and festive to enjoy St. Patrick’s day? You’re in luck – we’ve found a pot of gold in the videos featured below; they’re full of tips to have you celebrating in style while keeping your pot of gold growing, so go ahead – go (and save) green!

St. Patrick’s Inspired Eye Makeup - Tutorial for green green green green St. Pat’s party eyes.

St. Patrick’s Day, Host a Party - Tips to make your budget bash a success from

St. Patrick’s Day Last Minute Party - Marley Majcher, author and founder of gives elegant and affordable tips.

How to Throw a St. Patrick’s Day Party - The title says it all!

St. Patrick’s Day Dinner, 3-Course, Under $40 - Chef Dundon from Ireland’s famous Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant shows recipes! Mushroom Chowder, Sheperd’s Pie, Bailey’s Creme Brulee.

St. Patrick’s Irish Bread Recipe - Easy, easy YUM from

St. Patrick’s Day Four Leaf Clover - Decorate in one minute! Easy clovers from

St. Patrick’s Day Music: Stephane Grappelli, Frankie Gavin – Oh The Days Of The Kerry Dances - The legendary Stephane Grapelli on violin with Frankie Gavin and group in a stunning performance filmed in 2008.

John Mayer – “St. Patrick’s Day” - Nice live performance from John Mayer singing his piece titled, “St. Patrick’s Day,” filmed in 2006

And… we turn now to: St. Patrick’s Day — Trivia:

  • St. Patrick is supposed to have removed what from Ireland?
  • Why does a leprechaun wear green?
  • What is a leprechaun’s profession?
  • The first St. Patrick’s Day celebration in the U.S. was held in which city?
  • Click here for St. Patrick’s Day trivia answers.

More St. Patrick’s Day budget tips in our post:

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Roll Out the Red Carpet, Not Your Wallet, Oscar Party Ideas

Academy Awards night is a great opportunity to enjoy some Hollywood glitz, glamor and celebrity excitement right in your own home. Whether a full fashion formal sparkling event, or just snuggling on the sofa with a ballot and a sparkling drink, Oscar night can be enjoyed without breaking the bank or straining your budget.  The videos here give tips on hosting, easy recipes, quick cocktail ideas, games, and even swag bag favor ideas, to make your red carpet party at home fabulous.

Oscar Party Worthy of Awards - Early Show contributor Katie Lee shows how to host an Oscar party with simple tips, recipes, and planning ideas perfect for any budget.

Secrets of Celebrity Parties - How to set the tone and create super successful parties that won’t hurt your budget…Do what the celebrities do! Tips from’s, Marley Majcher.

Party Hors d’oeuvres - These appetizers are perfect for an Oscars Party! Affordable, impressive ideas from contributing expert AndreaCorreale.

Oscar Party for the Ladies – Everything you need to create an affordable, fun alternative to a red carpet full fancy feast party: make it a girls night out, ultra casual and just desserts, aka: sweats and sweets, from celebrity event planner, founder of Chic Events, Rachel Hollis.

Red Carpet Fashion Look-A-Likes, Oscars ’09 – You can get the red carpet glam looks. trend and style reporter, Katlean De Monchy, shows how and gives resources for the celebrity looks-for-less fashion trends.

How to Tie a Bow Tie - Craig Stokes, host of Style Minute, shows you how to tie a bow tie. We reviewed several instructional videos on this topic, and Craig’s is without a doubt the best!

Want to enjoy the Academy Awards but you don’t have a TV? Not a problem, catch our previous post:

More budget-smart party ideas:

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20 Big Time (& Budget) Valentine’s Day Ideas

Valentine’s Day… and we’re on it, with videos full of ideas to say you care, and ways to celebrate in warm, cozy, and ultra romantic style, without over-spending or draining your bank account… so go ahead, indulge:

Rich Romantic Times for Less - Relationship expert, Sean Stephenson gives inspiring ideas for a hot date, no matter what your budget, that are sure to “wow” your honey.

Valentine, Impress Your Honey for Little Money - Amy Lewis,

Valentine Gifts for Men Under $50 - David Greg from shows great ideas for the guys

Valentives DIY Projects, KMBC’s Dion Lim gives easy projects for a big statement but a little price!

Valentine’s Day Card DIY – An easy, fun craft both kids and adults will love doing. Create a woven heart-shapped “packet” to hold a sweet something for your sweetie.

Valentines Pop-Up Card DIY - Create a whimsical heart-to-heart pop-up card – quick and easy.

Valentines Kids Party on Budget - Games, snacks, decorations and crafts from Kit Bennett of

Valentines DIY Kids Projects - Dion Lim, of Dion’s Daily, with ideas that kids can create

Street Food Smart! - Treat Your Valentine to an ultra- affordable Gourmet Dinner! Tips from sltv Exclusives Video Contributor, Daniel Delaney, of

Valentines Dinner: 3-Course Under $35 - Husband and Wife chefs, Lachlan & Allison Patterson (Lachlan was also a contestant on Top Chef Masters & 2008 Best Chef Shouthwest from the James Beard Foundation)

Valentine Bubbly! – Champagne & Sparkling Wines – tips  to save you money on the bubbly

Valentines DIY Spa Day - Use items right from your kitchen! – Katie Lee on CBS’ The Early Show

Valentine Romantic Look - Professional make-up artist, Michelle Phan, shows romantic make-up how-to steps

Red Carpet Inspired Looks Golden Globes - Looking for a Valentine knock-out dress? Get Red Carpet Looks for way less with these GoldenGlobe ’09 inspired fashion-find deals from trending reporter, Kathleen De Monchy

Red Carpet Inspired Looks Oscars - Want a Valentine knock-out dress? Get Red Carpet Looks for way less with these Oscar ’08 inspired fashion-find deals from Kathleen De Monchy

Valentine’s Gift Giving Stages – Stephen Lenz, AOL Shopping consultant,  has tips for any stage of your relationship

Limo’s – How to Get the Best Deal – For that Xtra Special Valentines Night from

Budget-Friendly Rings - Tips on what to watch & watch out for from Summer Krecke, Deputy Editor,

Wedding Rings - What to Consider When Buying a wedding rings, from diamonds.

Frugal Destination Weddings – (what Valentine wouldn’t love that?) Antonia van der Meer, editor-in-chief of Modern Bride Magazine

More Great ideas you can use for Valentine’s Celebrations (& Savings) in our

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Awesome Super Bowl Party (on a Budget) Tips

Super Bowl… it’s all about the game… er… party… er… food… er… budget...

Whatever the Super Bowl is for you, you won’t want to miss catching these videos with recipes and entertaining tips that score well for your wallet’s team while you serve your guests a winning time.

Football Fiesta – Andrea Correale, founder of Elegant Affairs catering gives affordable football-themed  ideas for food, buffet settings & party favors.

10 Super Bowl Party Savings Tips – Josh Elledge, SavingsAngel founder’s tips to save on a range of Super Bowl Party expenses like babysitting, party supplies, decorations, food & more.

Super Bowl Buffalo Chicken Wings & Vegan Snacks –  Traditional Wings, Asian Peanut Sauce & 2 vegan dishes, all for under $15 from the Working Class Foodies.

Super Bowl, Serve 8 Under $35 - Tim Love, Owner of The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro in Forth Worth, Texas shares recipes for a Super Bowl menu on a budget: 3-course meal to serve 8 people for less than $35.

Hosting a Party? Play it Safe with Liability Insurance -  Experts say it’s important for party hosts to carry liability insurance for your parties, not only to cover a potential accident or an incident due to intoxication – but also for things like food poisoning, even if the event is catered you may be held responsible.

More ideas from our friends:

  • Super Bowl party ideas, recipes, drinks and games…
  • Super Bowl Menu: how to keep it frugal…
  • More Recipes including Beer Cocktails…

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And the Grammy Goes To…

Enjoy these concert clips, music videos and television segments from our collection of celebrities and artists - all of whom have received past Grammy nominations and/or awards… and they also have something else in common: they all have recorded songs or skits on the topic of… yep, you guessed it: MONEY.

AC/DC – Nominated for 8  Grammys, AC/DC received their first win for Best Hard Rock Performance with the song “War Machine” in 2010. In this clip you can catch them performing their 1992 Grammy nominated song “Moneytalks.”

The Beatles – The fab four received Grammy Awards for Best New Artist of 1964, Best Album in 1967 for Sgt. Pepper, and Best Song for “Michelle” in 1966.  Six of their albums have received Grammy Hall of Fame Awards: Meet The Beatles, Abbey Road, Revolver, Rubber Soul, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles (White Album) and the song, ”Strawberry Fields Forever.” The Beatles have never won for Best Song. Catch this video montage featuring “Baby You’re a Rich Man.”

Gus Cannon –  It was The Rooftop Singers recording of “Walk Right In” that hit number one on the Billboard charts at the end of January, 1963. It was a million-seller and the biggest record in the history of the folk label, Vanguard records.  The Walk Right In album would win a Grammy for Best Folk Recording. Gus Cannon received recognition and was credited as having written the song. Here is a 1927 recording of Gus Cannon singing, “My Money Never Runs Out.”

John Cleese - Cleese received a Grammy in 1989 in the category of Best Spoken Word for The Screwtape Letters. In this clip with with Grammy winners, Money Python, in 1972, Cleese shines in his performance of  “The Money Song.”
Albert Collins – In 1987 the legendary Fender Telecaster guitar player and blues singer, Albert Collins, shared a Grammy for the album Showdown! (released in 1986) which he recorded with Robert Cray and Johnny Copeland. The following year his solo release Cold Snap was also nominated for a Grammy. Here is Collins in a 1990 concert performing “If Trouble Was Money.”
Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Mark Knopfler and Sting - Eric Clapton has received nineteen nominations with eighteen wins. I count twenty Grammy Awards for Collins (there may be more?) and that does not include those received by the group Genesis of which he was a member. Knofler has eight nominations with five wins. Sting shows twenty-one nominations with eleven wins. Here are Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Mark Knopfler and Sting on stage performing “Money For Nothin (I Want My MTV).”
Bing Crosby – The song, “Pennies From Heaven” was introduced by Bing in the 1936 film of the same title. The 1936 recording by Crosby on Decca Records was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2004. And Bing received a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1966. Here is Bing Crosby in a scene from the film singing, “Pennies from Heaven”.  And you can also catch this performance of the song, circa 1950, from the extraordinary jazz musician, Johnny Windhurst in this clip.
Ellen Degeneres – Though she hasn’t received a Grammy, she has hosted the Grammy Awards twice, in 1996 and  in 1997. Here’s Ellen “Shopping” at CVS.
Fleetwood Mac – The group received two wins from nine Grammy nominations. In 1978 they received the award for Album of the Year with Rumors, and the group was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2003. This is an amazing instrumental piece from way back in the earliest days, “Shake Your Moneymaker”.
Lady Gaga – There are fifteen Grammy nominations with four wins for Lady Gaga. Here is Lady Gaga’s music video of a hit song from her Grammy winning debut album, Fame,  “Money Honey.”

Joel Grey and Liza Minnelli – 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of the release of the musical film Cabaret, in which Grey and Minnelli both play leading roles. In 20o8 Cabaret. Original Soundtrack Recording was inducted to the Grammy Hall of Fame. Here in a scene from the film Cabaret are Grey and Minnelli performing “Money.”

Merle Haggard -  Country music song writer, singer, guitarist, fiddler, and instrumentalist, Merle Haggard has received three Grammy Awards which includes the 1999 Hall of Fame Award for “Mama Tried.” Here is Haggard in his 2001 music video, “If You’ve Got the Money.”

The Kingsmen - Best known for their 1963 recording of Richard Berry’s “Louie Louie”, which held the No. 2 spot on the Billboard charts for six weeks, The Kingsmen were 2005 recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award  for “Outstanding Contributions to the music community.”  This segment from Hallabaloo A-go-go television show circa 1964 is not to be missed: The Kingsmen, “perform”  ”Money Money.”

The Kinks –  The Kinks fall into that category of talented groups who have never won a Grammy. However, the group was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999. Here is a rocking 1979 performance of The Kinks doing “Low Budget.”

Los Kumbia Kings – Their first album, Amor, Familia Y Respeto, earned them a Grammy nomination. In 2006, Los Kumbia Kings won their first Latin Grammy for their album, Kumbia Kings Live (Best Tropical Regional Mexican Album). Here they are in concert performing a lively rendition of  ”No Tengo Dinero.”

Madonna – Madonna holds 28 nominations with seven wins. This video is a 1985 live performance of “Material Girl” which was originally  released in 1984.  Madonna in “Material Girl” Live, 1985.

Dean Martin - The movie, Three Coins in a Fountain, won three Academy Awards in 1955, one of which was Best Music, Original Song. The song, “Three Coins in a Fountain” has not received a Grammy Award, however Frank Sinatra, who sang it in the movie, has received numerous Grammys as has Dean Martin, who sings it in this clip  from the 1955 Academy Awards television show, where Bob Hope introduces Jerry Lewis, who then introduces Dean Martin who sings the titled song, “Three Coins in a Fountain.”

Steve Martin – Martin has received  four Grammy Awards: Best comedy Album, in 1978, Let’s Get Small and in 1979 A Wild and Crazy Guy; 2001 for Best country Instrumental Performance with Earl Scruggs (and others) for his banjo performance of  ”Foggy Mountain Breakdown;” and 2009 for Best Bluegrass Album for The Crow: New Songs for the 5-String Banjo. Here he is in this Saturday Night Live classic sketch: Don’t Buy Stuff You Can’t Afford.

The O’Jays – In 2002, the O’Jays were nominated for a Grammy for their album For The Love Of…; They were inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2006. Their recording of “For The Love of Money” was nominated for Best R&B Vocal in 1975, and has become the recognized theme song for Donald Trump’s television show, The Apprentice. Here are the O’Jays in a 2008 concert performing “For The Love of Money.”

Pink Floyd – The group received four Grammy nominations with a win for for Best Rock Instrumental Performance for “Marooned” in 1994, and in 1999 they were inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Pink Floyd released their hit, “Money” in 1973. Here is their music video,  “Money.”

Elvis Presley - Elvis received fourteen Grammy nominations. His three wins were for gospel recordings – the  1967 album How Great Thou Art;  the 1972 album He Touched Me; and the 1974 live Memphis concert recording of the song “How Great Thou Art.” In 1971 he was also recognized with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Elvis was 36-years old at the time. Six of Elvis’ recordings, all of them his original studio masters, have been inducted into the Hall of Fame: “Hound Dog,” “Heartbreak Hotel,” “That’s All Right,” “Suspicious Minds,” “Don’t Be Cruel,” and “Are You Lonesome Tonight.” Here is a 1956 television recording of Elvis performing  “Money Honey”.

Santana – Santana has received inductions into both the Grammy Hall of Fame and the Latin Grammy Hall of Fame, and according to the Guinness World Records, their album, Supernatural, is the best-selling Latin album of all time. In addition to their induction into the Grammy Hall of Fame, they have received  fourteen nominations with ten wins. Here is  Santana performing circa 1980, Frankfurt, Germany, “Shake Your Money Maker.”

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band – Recipient of twenty Grammy Awards, Springsteen and the E Street Band released their album, Wrecking Ball, in time to have received several Grammy nominations for 2013. Here they are in Philadelphia on stage March, 2012 performing a song from the album, “Easy Money.”

Steely Dan – The release of their album, Two Against Nature, won four Grammy awards including Album of The Year in 2001. Catch this 2006 performance of  “Black Friday.”

Gwen Stefani and Eve – Stefani has received three awards from eighteen nominations. Eve holds one win from four nominations.  In 2002 Stefani and Eve both received Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, for “Let Me Bow Ya Mind.” Also in 2002 Stefani won for “Hey Baby” in the category of Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals; in that same category in 2004 Gwen received the award for “Underneath It All.”  Here are Gwen Steffani and Eve at the 2005 Grammy Awards show performing their Grammy nominated song, “Rich Girl.”

Barrett Strong – Strong was among the first artists signed to Berry Gordy’sMotown corporation, and is the performer on the company’s first hit, “Money (That’s What I Want)” which gave Strong his only major hit as a vocalist. Strong went on to become a prolific and important lyricist in R & B and Pop genres. Strong received a Grammy Award for Best R&B Song in 1973 for “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” and he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2004. Listen to this 1959 original recording of his hit, “Money (That’s What I Want)”

Donna Summer – A five-time Grammy Award winner, Donna Summer was the first artist to have three consecutive double albums reach number one on the United States Billboard chart, and she also charted four number-one singles in the United States within a 13-month period. In the late 1970s Donna Summer released eight consecutive top 5 pop hit singles. Here is her music video of  “She Works Hard For The Money” which earned Summer a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal in 1983.

Hank Williams, Jr. –  Williams, Jr. has received seven Grammy nominations. He received one win for Best Country Collaboration with Vocals in 1990 for “There’s a Tear in My Beer” in which he “collaborated” with his departed father, Hank Williams, Sr.  In this music video, Hank Williams, Jr. sings  ”Everything Comes Down to Money.”

 Weird Al Yankovic - Singer, songwriter and satirist, Yankovic’s works have earned him three Grammy Awards among fourteen nominations.  Here is his music video parody of “Money for Nothin (I Want My MTV):”
“Money for Nothing/Beverly Hillbillies.”

Warren Zevon – Zevon’s album, The Wind, was nominated posthumously in 2004 for five Grammys and received two Grammys: Song of the Year, and Best Rock Performance By A Duo or Group With Vocal for “Disorder In The House” with Bruce Springsteen. Here is an absolutely stunning performance by Zevon during an appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman singing: “Lawyers Guns and Money.”

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How to Host a Golden Globe Awards Party on a Budget

Yes, you can enjoy entertaining with Hollywood and Broadway style, right in your own home.  Here are 5 videos from entertaining and trend-spotting experts giving ideas on food, fashion and decorating so you can host a fabulous party that won’t leave your wallet empty.

Party Great on a Budget - Make your special event the best! You can host a great party, and on a budget, too! The Party Goddess, Marley Majcher, shows how easy it can be.

Red Carpet Look-A-Likes, Golden Globes ’10 - You can look like a Hollywood star and do it on a budget.’s fashion trend expert, Katlean de Monchy, shows two celebrity dresses, a casual outfit, shoes and even sunglasses… and how you can have the glam looks for.

Red Carpet Look-A-Likes, Golden Globes ’07 - With smart shopping and these fashion-find tips, you get the dresses and outfits to look like a Hollywood star on an extra’s budget when’s Katlean De Monchy shows how to get Golden Globe runway fashion trends for less.

Award Night Party Decor - Martha Stewart demonstrates how you can easily re-create the glitz and glam of Awards Night in your own home and on a budget.

Golden Globe 5-Star Snacks - Jill Sharpe from, shows budget-friendly make-ahead “golden” recipes perfect for your Golden Globe party, so you can enjoy visiting with guests and watching the award show without being chained to the kitchen.

More Fabulous Party Hosting ideas in this post:

Want to enjoy the Golden Globe Awards Show but you don’t have a TV or cable? Not a problem, catch our post:

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Shop to Give: 7 Resources you can easily use to give back as you’re gift shopping

7 Resources you can easily use to give back as you’re gift shopping:

If you’re considering a charitable donation, the best way to be certain where  your money is going is to make a donation directly to the organization of your choice. But, if you’re going to be gift shopping anyway, it why not make your purchases count for more by shopping in a way that actually generates funds for charitable organizations? Couldn’t hurt, right?

Charity Choice

Charity Gift Cards and Certificates  - Great to include in gift-baskets!

A beautiful giving concept: Give a charity gift certificate that the recipient designates where they would like the charitable donation to go.

Charity Gift Cards was born when Mark Finkel, a board member of the nonprofit organization, Special Kids Fund, wanted to make a charity donation in memory of the recently-deceased father of a business associate. Not knowing what cause was important to the family, he wished to give a charitable gift that allowed the recipient to designate the charity of his/her choice. You purchase gift “vouchers” from Charity Choice, then the recipient determines which organization they want to apply the credit to. There are several similar charity gift card organizations out there, so a word of caution to be aware of extra fees and expiration dates.

Fairwinds Trading

Since 2005, Fairwinds Trading has opened U.S. markets to thousands of artisans and entrepreneurs in Africa and Indonesia while introducing high-value, culturally expressive beautiful craft products to millions of Americans. Fairwinds Trading is an American business built on enduring partnerships that bring together people and products across global divides. You can  visit the Fairwinds Trading site or visit Macy’s Shop for A Better World department for these beautiful handmade gift items.

Give Back America

Serves hundreds of charities, you choose where contributions from your purchases should go. GBA is an online shopping mall where retailers, such as &, pay GBA a commission to refer customers to their site. GBA takes the commission from the retailer and shares it with the charity of your choice.  Use links when you do your internet shopping and 100% of listed commission proceeds go to your designated charities.

Greater Good

Shop to benefit: Ending hunger, breast cancer care & research, literacy support, child health issues, women’s rights worldwide, rainforest preservation, wildlife habitat protection and restoration, animal rescue.  Each person’s daily click on the Click To Give™ sites displays sponsor advertising. 100% of sponsor advertising is paid as a royalty to charity through the non-profit, tax-exempt Supporters can also contribute directly to charity by purchasing Gifts that Give More™, where 100% of their donation is given to charity, or by purchasing one of the 4500+ products that we carry, including jewelry, apparel, and gifts. There is a charity royalty of from 5-30% paid on every item purchased from any of the GreaterGood Network’s online stores.

iGive and iSearchiGive

Raise money for your favorite cause, every time you search the web. is a search engine powered by, the internet’s first online shopping mall where a portion of each purchase is donated to your favorite cause. When you use iSearchiGive to search the web, your favorite cause receives exactly $0.02 per qualified search. The money comes from advertisers, so it costs you nothing, and it’s completely free for you and the cause you support.  If you shop, you can help even more. iSearchiGive is brought to you by the pioneers in online shopping and charitable giving:, where up to 26% of each purchase at over 680 participating online stores is donated to your favorite cause.


(RED)™ is a simple idea that transforms our collective power as shoppers into a financial force that helps those affected by HIV in Africa. To date, $140 million has been generated and 4 million people have been helped through global fund programs that (RED)™ supports.  When you choose to buy products from (RED)™ partner companies up to 50% of the profit goes towards eliminating AIDS in Africa.  In addition to finding (RED) at all of our great partner retailers this holiday season, this December you can find an array of (PRODUCT) (RED) branded products under one roof at the (RED) pop up shops in London, Tokyo, San Francisco and New York.  (RED) partners including Apple, Bugaboo, Converse, Dell, Emporio Armani, Gap, Hallmark, Starbucks and special editions Solange Azagury-Partridge, Girl Skateboard, Channel Islands Surfboards, and Timbuk2. (Selection will vary by location).

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, founded by the late entertainer Danny Thomas, is one of the world’s premier centers for the research and treatment of pediatric cancer and other catastrophic childhood diseases. Children from all 50 states and around the world have come through the doors of St. Jude for treatment, and thousands more have benefited from the research conducted at St. Jude—research that is shared freely with the global medical community. St. Jude is the only pediatric cancer research center where families never pay for treatment not covered by insurance. No child is ever denied treatment because of the family’s inability to pay. St. Jude covers the cost of everything—food, travel and lodging for patients and a family member.

Shop from a wide selection of gift choices in St. Jude’s gift shop and 100% of the profits after all related expense go to benefit the hospital.  In addition, you can shop from partner companies who participate in a St. Jude’s donation program.

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Obamacare: What It Means For You

Health care costs from drugstore items, insurance premiums and co-payments, to emergency room and hospital visits are one of the largest expenses American’s face, and picking up the tab for the uninsured results in a considerable financial drain on everyone and the government. Today marks the start of The Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, which hopes to aleviate much of that financial burden.

Despite the government shutdown, one of the most critical elements of the health care law, open enrollment, begins on 51 different state-based, online insurance marketplaces.

How will this affect you and your family and/or your business? What should you do? What paperwork, forms, proof of income, etc. will you need to sign up? What is covered, what isn’t?  How much will it cost me? Where do you go to find out more?

In brief:

You don’t have to do anything right now if:

  • You already have insurance
  • You have insurance through your employer
  • You are on Medicare, Medicaid
  • Your child is covered by CHIP
  • You are on COBRA

If you do NOT have coverage of any kind right now – this IS for you. You can begin shopping for health care coverage plans on Tuesday, October 1, 2013 ONLY through This is where you can compare costs and choose the coverage plan you want. 

This is the portal through which you will be directed to your state’s listing of available plans. Each state has something different. For those who live in states that are not offering plans, you will be directed to a federal government site for coverage options. In either case, you’re going to see different types of coverage plans — say like covering 60 percent to 90 percent of your health care costs. You can choose the plan that you prefer.

There are subsidies and tax credits available for those with qualifying income levels.

You have from October 1, 2013 until March 21, 2014 to enroll in a plan during this first enrollment phase.

January 1, 2014 – health coverage starts.

This Open Enrollment period closes, March 21, 2014.

There are penalties for those who do not enroll in a plan by March 21, 2014. The fines will go up over time, so should you choose to not enroll, you should know an estimate ahead of time as to what penalties you’ll be facing now and in the future.

Here are five videos that explain and clarify in more detail.

UPDATE: Medical Insurance Shopping Site That Works - With the Obamacare website ( non-functioning, these three San Francisco techies in their 20′s created a site in one weekend that brings you all the comparison insurance shopping you need, and it’s free. 

5 Things About Obamacare’s Open Enrollment -  What you should know about the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance coverage and open enrollment (aka: Obamacare) and what will be available to you.

Obamacare Insurance Enrollments – Open enrollment in the health insurance exchanges begin October 1st and it is the first opportunity to shop for comprehensive health care plans under the Affordable Care Act. More about  what this mean for you in this clip.

 Obamacare Starts: What It Means For You - Starting Oct. 1, Americans looking for health coverage are able to enroll in a private insurance plan through a state-based exchange – online marketplaces where consumers can comparison shop for health coverage, “Just like you would for cell phone plans or plane tickets.” President Obama said. What you need to know about Obamacare  and where you go to find out more in this clip.
What You Need to Know About Obamacare Scams - The launch of the Affordable Care Act begins on October 1. PROTECT YOURSELF AND WATCH OUT FOR SCAMS… Get important details to protect yourself in this clip.
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Garden, Home & Fun In The Sun DIY Wallet-Friendly Ideas

If you’ve got the heat… and the rain… you might as well make them work for you - they’re both free energy resources! And, while were outside taking advantage of the warm, why not start a vegetable or herb garden? And… have some fun in the sun while we’re at it!  Here are videos with tips to build a cool DIY garden greenhouse, make an easy composter, make and use rain barrels to collect rain water for your garden, design a solar oven to cook using solar heat, play in the yard with a DIY sprinkler, and more… all while keeping yourself and your wallet cool and happy!

  • Make a Garden Greenhouse for Cheap - Growing herbs and vegetables saves you money, gives you healthier foods, is a fun activity to share with the kids. Here’s how to make a quick, easy and inexpensive “greenhouse hoop” to get started and get a longer growing season.
  • DIY Herb Gardening - Think you have no space or can’t afford an herb garden? Not so! The Working Class Foodies share some simple, easy tips for how to build your own window box garden for only $10.
  • Build a Rolling Composter for Your Garden - Growing vegetables is fun, healthy, and eco-friendly. Here’s how to take your kitchen scraps, lawn clippings and leaves and make an quick and easy to use inexpensive rolling composter for your garden.
  • DIY Rain Barrel for Cheap - Collecting rain water to use in your garden saves you money and is eco-friendly. Here’s an easy DIY on how to make your own rain barrel.
  • All About Rain Barrels - Take advantage of rain – a free natural resource, by using rain barrels to collect run off form your roof gutters for later use watering your garden. Here’s how to set up a rain barrel system.
  • Easy Soda Pop Bottle Sprinkler - Keep your cool and have fun in the sun, for practically nothing! How to take an old soda pop bottle and turn it into a quick and easy DIY sprinkler.
  • Cook for Free DIY Solar Oven - Save money, save electricity, & keep your kitchen cooler while you cook outdoors with this simple ecological solar oven you can make for pennies! Chris Buyers from The Valley Permaculture Alliance shows how.

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