Sunday, January 29, 2012


It was a banner day for coupons today!  Picked up 2 newspapers for $4.01 and got over $300 in coupons to restock my coupon binder.  Looking forward to a lot of great savings in the weeks to come :0). 

On my weekly trip to Walgreens I did two transactions.  The first transaction was for a new razor, eye drops and aspirin.  With coupons I saved a little over 60% on my first purchase.  For my second transaction I purchased grocery items including Bon Appetite meals, Pepsi 2 liters, toilet paper and paper towels.  With one register reward from the first transaction and 2 manufacturers coupons I saved over 90% on my second transaction, paying a total of $2.67 for my grocery/household items!  I ended up spending a total of $20 cash, however I also received $16 in register rewards to use on next weeks shopping trip. 

So although I spent $20, next week I'll get to spend $16 out of that $20 again on additional purchases.  With all the coupons from today's paper and $16 in register rewards, I'm really looking forward to next weeks ad!

Saturday, January 28, 2012


After taking in to consideration the state of the U.S. and world economy I've decided to keep things simple for the first part of 2012 and invest in utilities.  I've written in earlier posts my reasons for believing utility companies will do well for the next few years, so I've picked out what I believe to be some of the best of the best to beef up the utility section of my portfolio and increase monthly cash flows.  Increasing monthly cash flow while keeping risk at a minimum is my biggest investment goal for the year. 

I'm still working on rebuilding my investment portfolio after the big payouts on health care from my heart attack.  Of course I still have the expense of ongoing care, with no insurance, but I've managed to keep expenses to a manageable level so far.  Things should be even easier as more of my old debts are paid off this year.  I should be entirely debt free by the end of 2012, which frees up money spent on debt for building my dividend stock portfolio.  I have already doubled my monthly cash investment and will continue to increase contributions as bills are paid off.

So the simple overall plan is pay off debt and buy utilities for 2012.  May not be the best of plans, but I'm sure I could do a lot worse. 


There has been a lot of talk lately by politicians about "taxing the rich" and making them "pay their fare share."  While I suspect this is only a ploy to tax increase taxes on investment income from the majority of average hard working Americans, if congress and the Obama administration truly believe the rich don't pay their fare share, I have an idea for them.  

It would save the country millions of dollars and have zero impact on the poor if all the political leaders in Washington from the President, down through all the members of Congress would simply take a pay cut.  Since the majority of them are very wealthy if not obscenely rich, it would have little or no effect on their personal net worth, while saving the country millions of dollars.  I think a token salary of $20,000 would not be out of line.  Poor working American citizens, people on disability and Social Security and the unemployed often receive far less. 

If our leaders expect everyone else to bite the bullet during the financial crisis, then they should set the example.  I don't mean they should donate this money to some pet charity, worthy or noble as that may sound, it would not save the taxpayers any money.   I mean they should give it up entirely and their total compensation should be $20,000 or less per year.  If they show a willingness to give up something for the good of the country then perhaps it wouldn't be such a task to get others to do the same.  

Any of the truly wealthy who are behind the whole "tax the rich" movement and think that it's unfair for them to pay less in taxes, as a percentage of their income, than some of the people who work for them can easily relieve their guilty consciences by donating money towards reducing the national debt.  Or perhaps they could set up trusts to help fund some of the social programs now paid by taxpayers.  If they are donating billions to charities around the world, why not donate to the country that made them wealthy to begin with???

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


"Now I will tell a strange truth, the reason for which I know not.  When I ceased to pay out more than nine-tenths of my earnings, I managed to get along just as well.  I was not shorter than before.  Also, ere long, did coins come to me more easily than before.   Surely it is a law of the Gods that unto him who keepeth and spendeth not a certain part of all his earnings, shall gold come more easily.  Likewise, him whose purse is empty does gold avoid."-- From "The Richest Man in Babylon" by George S. Clason

Monday, January 9, 2012


Started the new year off right with dividends from Westar Energy (WR), Glaxo Smith Klein (GSK) and Reynolds American International (RAI).  There is a lot of uncertainty going into earnings season with efforts to shore up the Euro, so not really sure where the market is headed.  The jobs report gave us a little boost, but I wouldn't count on that to last long. 

January is the month I usually review my investment plan and make any revisions I think necessary.  Also working on getting all my tax paperwork together to file my income taxes.  Will probably get a small refund this year, which I plan to invest solely in my taxable account to build monthly cash flow.  I invest in my taxable account and my IRA every month but I look forward to these small windfalls from tax refunds to give my portfolio a boost.

Monday, January 2, 2012


Hope everyone had a happy and safe new year's eve and new years day!  Got my new year off to a great start by replenishing my supply of coupons from Sunday's inserts.  Picked up some bargains, including a new Kindle as a late Christmas gift, on my regular Sunday shopping trip.  In total I saved 50% off my bill with coupons and sale match ups, almost enough to pay for the Kindle.

Coupons do take time and effort, but are well worth it.  I spent about 4 hours Sunday clipping coupons and getting them organized.  But I estimate I'll save several hundred dollars in the next couple of months just from this past Sunday's coupons!  Not bad for a few hours work.