Blog Posts by Fabulous & Frugal

  • Cheap vs Frugal: Any Interest?

    Being frugal throughout your life is key to building and sustaining wealth, but being cheap is a whole other ball of wax- and there is a huge cosmic difference between the two! But what is it? And who decides? Fabulous & Frugal takes a look at a variety of social situations to determine the difference between being cheap or frugal. Here's what we discussed this week…


    Cheap vs Frugal: Any Interest?

    Our friend Joan was in a tough situation. After several electrical mishaps, she found out her entire home needed to be rewired. The cost itself was shocking - $5,000! She didn't have the cash, and didn't want to resort to credit cards, so she turned to family - namely her cousin Molly - and asked her for a loan until the end of the year.


    Molly immediately said yes - of course - she would be happy to help! Thankfully she was in a position to loan Joan the money, and Joan wasn't just family, but a dear friend. So far so good, right?


    Molly, being ever the

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  • Give Your Wallet A Makeover

    The state of your wallet is a reflection of how you deal with money, and an organized wallet WILL save you money! However, it does take some effort. There are times when I get so busy that my own wallet becomes totally cluttered with receipts and I absent-mindedly stash cash in random compartments, sending me to the ATM for more - even though I don't need any.! It's truly amazing how quickly such a seemingly small thing can cause you to lose your Fab & Fru footing and spend more than you planned.

    So: It's time to give your wallet a Fab & Fru Makeover! Our friend Clarky Davis, The Debt Diva, advises, "what you keep in your wallet will actually help you become debt free". Read on for our wallet tidying tips that will help you spend less, save more and reduce your debt in the process!

    Keep Your Cash in Order

    Don't laugh at the people who take the time to have all their bills face the same way and organize each denomination from smallest to largest. These folks tend to know

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  • The Price Of A Destination Wedding...

    I love going to destination weddings, but let's face it- although they're tons of fun- they're also typically a pricey proposition for a guest.

    Our friend Secily just found out her college roommate is getting married at a resort in Bermuda over Fourth of July weekend. It's a smallish wedding and the bride is so excited for Secily and her boyfriend to finally meet her husband to be. Of course, Secily would love to be there for her dear friends big day, but the bride has only given her guests a couple of months notice to financially and logistically plan for her Caribbean nuptials.

    The truth is, although Secily can afford to go to the wedding, she and her boyfriend are saving to buy a house this Fall. It would be a financial stretch for both of them to attend the wedding, and Secily is uncomfortable going alone. To make matters more complicated, her boyfriend has already casually invited some friends from New York to their Boston apartment for July 4th weekend.

    Secily calculated the

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  • Dealing with the Workmen Haggle

    Being frugal throughout your life is key to building and sustaining wealth, but being cheap is a whole other ball of wax- and there is a huge cosmic difference between the two! But what is it? And who decides? Fabulous & Frugal takes a look at a variety of social situations to determine the difference between being cheap or frugal. Here's what we discussed this week…

    They say no one can make you feel inferior without your consent, but does the same hold true for someone making you feel cheap? Here's what happened…

    A few months ago, I completely renovated my bathroom. I had a set budget with a tiny bit of wiggle room, and I hired an honest, quality contractor who came highly recommended. Of course the job took a little longer than planned, and of course small changes were made during the job that slightly increased the overall cost of the renovation. But I had approved those increases, and my contractor communicated well along the way - we completely enjoyed working

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  • Cheap vs Frugal: Splitting the Bill

    Being frugal throughout your life is key to building and sustaining wealth, but being cheap is a whole other ball of wax- and there is a huge cosmic difference between the two! But what is it? And who decides? Fabulous & Frugal takes a look at a variety of social situations to determine the difference between being cheap or frugal. Here's what we discussed this week…

    We've all been out to those large group dinners where it's all fun and laughs…until the bill comes. You know how awkward it can be: perhaps you just ordered a mixed green salad, while Beth orders soup and an entree and Sam orders the steak. Then Jen orders two bottles of wine 'for the table', but Sarah isn't drinking, and Johnny is drinking beer. Then Denise orders dessert (with 6 spoons) and, well, you get the idea…

    There is much debate when it comes to the dollars and cents of eating out. So how do you split a group bill? And what is considered generous, frugal or just downright cheap? What is the proper etiquette in Read More »from Cheap vs Frugal: Splitting the Bill
  • Extend The Lives Of Your Knives

    Save Money & Cut Time In The Kitchen

    If you love to cook like I do, you probably know that a quality knife is often the secret weapon in transforming a hard to prepare meal into a delightful experience. And although I fully believe that stocking your kitchen with at least one or two fabulous knives is worth every penny, if you don't take proper care of that investment, both you and your knives will soon lose your edge!

    After waiting way too long to get my own knives sharpened, I finally took them to see Ralph, my neighborhood knife sharpening professional. Lucky for us, Ralph was full of Fab & Fru tips on how to keep you sharp and make your knives last as long as possible!


    Cut out the Dishwasher!

    Ralph explained to me that the high heat/high humidity environment found in your dishwasher is steel's worst enemy. Unless you are the kind of person who takes the knives out of the dishwasher immediately and hand dries them, your best bet is to wash your knives

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  • Can You Choose To Be A Luckier Person?

    Yesterday morning I was walking to work, when a crumpled up piece of green and white paper on the street caught my eye. Money! There it was, a dollar bill that someone had accidentally tossed away - it was my lucky day!

    Now, you might say - relax girl, it' s just a dollar… But the truth is, how often do you find paper money waiting for you o n the streets of New York City? I was in the right place at the right time - just lucky, I guess!

    I'll be honest, the idea of luck has always sort of tormented me. I love the idea of just happening upon good fortune, but I've never liked the notion that our lives are just left to such chance. Or maybe I just hadn't been looking at it the right way..

    The more I thought about it, the more I became convinced that we could actually choose to be lucky or unlucky. Have you ever noticed that it's always the down in the dumps people who seem to "never win anything" - you know the type! And have you noticed that some of the "luckiest" people

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  • Eco-Friendly Tips That Are Wallet Friendly Too!

    Fabulous & Frugal just loves Sophie Uliano! She is the New York Times Best Selling author of "Gorgeously Green", as well as the founder of a website by the same name. Thankfully, Sophie has assured us that going green can also mean more green in your wallet - how Fab & Fru is that!

    Uliano is a passionate environmentalist who has developed an earth-friendly lifestyle that appeals to women who don't want to compromise their glamour and style - sounds good to us. So read on for the top Fab &Fru tips from our gorgeously green friend!

    1. Install a low-flow AERATOR in all your faucets. An aerator cost the same as a pack of gum, it's easy to install, and it helps cut back on water waste so you save $$$$ as well as a precious resource.
    2. Brew your own organic, fair-trade coffee or tea at home and put it in a large reusable mug for the day. This might keep you out of the very expensive coffee shop and will save a few trees worth of paper cups.
    3. Pack your lunch in
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  • The Tale of the Overflowing Toilet

    Don't Pay Through the Nose Because You Can't Handle a Snake

    by Brandi Savitt

    None of us like to think of ourselves as a "helpless" woman - especially me! However, when it comes to being miss-fix-it around the house, I have definitely fallen into the 'girlie' category more than I'd like to admit. Having dealt with the humiliation of being ripped off…MORE THAN ONCE, I've learned the expensive way that if you can't fix basic household mishaps, you'll likely end up paying an OUTRAGEOUS price! Now, I'm not suggesting that we all go out and buy power tools, but learning some handywoman skills is not only useful, it's totally Fab & Fru!

    The Single Girl's Saturday Night Special

    One Saturday evening, in the not so distant past, I walked into the bathroom of my Brooklyn apartment to give myself one last look before rushing out the door to go on the first official date with the potential love of my life. I applied a little more lipstick and blotted my lips with a tissue. Good

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  • The Money Date

    How Mixing Food, Finances & Honesty Can Result in Savings

    by Stephanie Berenbaum

    Last weekend, my husband and I went on a "money date". I know it sounds less than romantic, but we wanted to go through our budget for the year. Nothing like talking yearly cash flow to really get you in the mood! Things were off to a good start when David told me he was taking me to my favorite restaurant! The bad news? It's pretty hard to get a Saturday night reservation at the last minute. So yes, we were going at 5pm… I luckily remembered we also had a gift certificate to the restaurant which under most circumstances would make our night totally Fab & Fru. However, coupled with our plans for an early bird special, the normally sweet deal was feeling more like the foreshadowing of our future golden years down in Boca. The planned discussion of credit card bills wasn't making me feel any more like a rock star either.

    Come Prepared…

    Arm yourself with notebooks, pens, paper, credit card

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