Happy Library Lovers’ Day!

Happy Library Lovers’ Day!

can i get your call number

What up what up, my sexy Valentines!!

If today’s a day you typically can’t stand, you might be pleased to know that it’s shared with another – perhaps even more special – day that’s celebrated as well:

“Library Lovers’ Day!”

A real day! (says the internet)

And what better day to celebrate today amongst us frugal nerds ?! 🙂

So before giving the finger to all those giddy lovers out there, try channeling that energy towards spreading the word on this special LIBRARY day instead. Since it obviously needs as much help as it can get for having to compete with VALENTINE’S DAY!! Who does that??! (Australia apparently)

More on Library Lovers’ Day from LibrarianshipStudies.com:

Library Lovers’ Day is celebrated on the 14th of February each year to honor libraries, librarians, book lovers, and lovers of libraries… [It] provides an opportunity to celebrate those who love and support libraries and to remind decision makers how loved and cherished libraries are by the entire community. Not everyone receives flowers on Valentine’s Day but everyone is welcome at their library.”

That last part needs to be a bumper sticker, lol…

So to help celebrate LL Day today, I thought you might want to pass around these nifty little Valentine’s Cards to those special librarians or book enthusiasts in your lives… What better way to beat V Day than to use their own ideas and infiltrate from within! 😉

Print and share, courtesy of ilovelibraries.org:

you're at the top of my holds list

wanna date-abase?

never stop renewing our friendship

you're my primary source of happiness

you can check me out anytime

can i get your call number

Other ways to celebrate your library today:


— Donate to one: American Library Association

— Volunteer at one

— Take a date to one (if you must celebrate V-Day)

— Date a librarian! 😉

— Follow my favorite Twitter handle: @FakeLibStats (“A librarian sighs an average of 430 times per work day“, “The average librarian’s cardigan conceals two pencils, one flask, and one emergency kitten”, “76% of librarians quietly sing the alphabet song to themselves when shelving”)

— Share any one of these amazing  library memes:

sirius book returns

dos equis book meme

messy library meme

reference desk penguin meme

dinosaurs extinct didn't read

cease reading books bookshelf

librarian humor

V Day might be winning at the moment, but with your help we can change the tide!

Always remember,

“Google can bring you back 100,000 answers.

A librarian can bring you back the right one.

– Neil Gaiman, Author

Happy Library Lovers’ Day, everyone 🙂


[Prefer to get these blog posts *weekly* instead of daily? Sign up to my new weekly digest here, and get other thoughts on life/business/money as well: jmoney.biz/newsletter]

from Finance https://www.budgetsaresexy.com/library-lovers-day/

10 Ways to Woo on Budget 💙

10 Ways to Woo on Budget 💙

matching tattoos

Happy almost Valentine’s Day!

If you’re a scrambler like me and don’t like dong the more traditional stuff on this day, I’ve got you covered 🙂  After all,

The difference between a $20 steak and a $55 steak?

February 14th!

Haha… We’re no suckers!

Fun (and frugal) ways to woo your significant other this V-Day:

  1. Set up camp in your living room! Pop a tent, gather a few sleeping bags and blankets (and bottles of wine), and then enjoy some peace and quiet in the comfort of your own home!
  2. Replace Hershey Kiss tags w/ your own loving words. Pick up a bag of Hersheys, cut up some small paper strips, and then swap out the tags with your own more creative (and sexier?) lines! This could also work with fortune cookies (just hold them over some steaming water to soften them so you can remove the original fortunes and then plug in your custom ones).
  3. Make her/him a mixed CD! A classic from the high school days! Sure you might have to first locate a CD and then find a device to record it on these days, but just imagine the joy – and shock – on your significant other’s face when you present it to them! 🙂 And even more so if you load it up with songs that remind you of them!
  4. Pick up two matching goldfish and name them after yourselves. This one’s cheezy as hell, but one of my favorites… It’s the gift that keeps on giving every time you feed them! 🙂
  5. Put a “Just Married” poster on your car and feel young & sexy all over again 😉 Sure you’ll have to drive around a bit to feel the full effect, but what better way to rekindle those feelings than in front of strangers pointing and clapping at you? 🙂
  6. Give her/him a vase with a single tulip in it. Attach a card to it that says something like, “I’ve got two lips to share with ya”and then pucker up! 😉 If your significant other doesn’t have a sense of humor, skip to #10 below.
  7. Hide Post-It love notes all over the place! This is one of my all-time favorites because it’s something you can do *any* day – not just on V-Day! And sometimes your significant other finds them years later because you get a bit TOO sneaky with hiding them, haha… So def. make sure to put some in more obvious places like mirrors and TVs/laptops etc so they can start feeling the effect of your charm right away…
  8. Cook dinner WITH each other. Find a good recipe you both find exciting, go out shopping together, and then come home and spend some good quality time hanging out and making fine cuisine with each other! Anyone can PAY for a fancy dinner, but making it yourselves takes it to a whole other Love Level…
  9. Put some naughty into your games. Like Jenga? Try out Lovers Jenga by writing down some scandalous “punishments” on each of the blocks, that way EVERY turn is a fun turn! 😉 Just make sure not to mix it up with your FAMILY’s Jenga!
  10. Get those matching tattoos you’ve always wanted… After all, nothing says “forever” like permanent ink! 😉

Now get out there and woo!


j. money signature


[Prefer to get these blog posts *weekly* instead of daily? Sign up to my new weekly digest here, and get other thoughts on life/business/money as well: jmoney.biz/newsletter]

from Finance https://www.budgetsaresexy.com/frugal-ways-to-woo-on-budget/

Some $$$ Jokes to Cheer Up Your Wallet!

Some $$$ Jokes to Cheer Up Your Wallet!

monkey toys

Heard some of your wallets might be feeling a bit down lately?

Here are some fun quips you might want to pass over to help ’em perk back up a little 😉

Helps with mine every time 👍


Did you hear about the man who swallowed a coin?

There’s no change yet.


My landlord says he needs to come talk to me about how high my heating bill is…

I told him my door is always open.


What’s the difference between deer nuts and beer nuts?

Beer nuts are $1.75, deer nuts are under a buck.


I’ve never understood the concept of the gift certificate…

For the same 50 bucks, my friend could’ve gotten me 50 bucks.


I got gas for $1.09 today.

Unfortunately, it was at Taco Bell.


A girl asks her mother “How old are you?”

Her mother replied “Older than most mortgages!”


To this day, the boy that used to bully me at school still takes my lunch money…

On the plus side, he makes great Subway sandwiches!


College is the opposite of kidnapping.

They demand $100,000 from you or they’ll send your kid back!


I remember being in so much debt that I couldn’t afford my electricity bills.

It was a dark time.


An FBI agent was interviewing a bank teller after the bank had been robbed 3 times by the same bandit:

“Did you notice anything special about the man?” asks the agent.

“Yes,” replied the teller. “He was better dressed each time.”


A one dollar bill met up with a twenty dollar bill and asked “Hey, where have you been? I haven’t seen you around here much.”

The twenty answered, “I’ve been hanging out at the casinos, went on a cruise and did the rounds of the ship, headed back to the United States for a while, went to a couple of basketball games, to the mall, that kind of stuff. How about you?”

The one dollar bill sighed, “You know, same old stuff … church, church, church.”


One day at a local café, a woman suddenly called out, “My daughter’s choking! She swallowed a nickel! Please, anyone, help!”

Immediately a man at a nearby table rushed up to her and said he was experienced in these situations. He calmly stepped over to the girl, then with no look of concern, wrapped his arms around her and squeezed. Out popped the nickel.

The man returned to his table as if nothing had happened.

“Thank you!” the mother cried. “Tell me, are you a doctor?”

“No,” the man replied. “I work for the IRS.”


A teenager lost his contact lens while playing basketball in his driveway, and after a brief, fruitless search, he gave up. His mother took up the cause and within minutes found the lens.

“How did you do that?” he asked. “We weren’t looking for the same thing,” she explained. “You were looking for a small piece of plastic. I was looking for $150.”


Lying on his deathbed, a rich, miserly old man calls to his long-suffering wife. “I want to take all my money with me,” he tells her. “So promise me you’ll put it in the casket.”

After the man dies, his widow attends the memorial service with her best friend. Just before the undertaker closes the coffin, she places a small metal box inside. Her friend looks at her in horror.

“Surely,” she says, “you didn’t put the money in there?” “I did promise him I would,” the widow answers. “So I got it all together, deposited every penny in my account, and wrote him a check. If he can cash it, he can spend it.”


Lawyer: “Judge, I wish to appeal my client’s case on the basis of newly discovered evidence.”

Judge: “And what is the nature of the new evidence?”

Lawyer: “Judge, I discovered that my client still has $500 left.”


A friend and I were eating at one of the trendier restaurants in town when my friend pointed to the menu and told the waitress, “I’ll have the 24.”

“Uh, John,” I whispered, “that’s the price, not the meal number.”

“Oh,” he said. “Then give me the 12.”


One day a man went to an auction. While there, he bid on an exotic parrot.

He really wanted this bird, so he got caught up in the bidding. He kept on bidding, but kept getting outbid, so he bid higher and higher and higher.

Finally, after he bid way more than he intended, he won the bid. The price was high but the fine bird was finally his!

As he was paying for the parrot, he said to the Auctioneer, “I sure hope this parrot can talk. I would hate to have paid this much for it, only to find out that he can’t talk!”

“Don’t worry,” said the Auctioneer, “He can talk. Who do you think kept bidding against you?”


i need a hug mug

If those didn’t do the trick…


[Prefer to get these blog posts *weekly* instead of daily? Sign up to my new weekly digest here, and get other thoughts on life/business/money as well: jmoney.biz/newsletter]

from Finance https://www.budgetsaresexy.com/money-jokes-to-cheer-up-your-wallet/

About that Democratic Primary …

By James Kwak

Today is the day of the New Hampshire primary, and, perhaps more importantly, lots of people in California are getting their ballots around now. Before you cast your vote in the Democratic presidential primary, I wish you would read Take Back Our Party, either online (for free) or in print. But I know most of you won’t, so this is what I want to say.

As a preamble, if you are a moderate Democrat—if you think welfare reform and financial deregulation were good ideas; if you think, along with Barack Obama, that more oil production is a good thing; if you think that America’s health care problems can be solved by private health insurance companies—what I am going to say is not for you. Go ahead and vote for Joe Biden, or Pete Buttigieg, or Amy Klobuchar.

The key message of Take Back Our Party is that the national Democratic Party of the past thirty years has been a failure, both as policy and as politics. What victories there were happened despite the party establishment (gay marriage, for example) or were actually moderate Republican policies (Obamacare). Both Presidents Clinton and Obama turned their backs on redistribution and social solidarity, preferring the soaring rhetoric of growth and opportunity: maximizing overall economic growth while giving everyone the “opportunity” to participate in prosperity. But what we got was modest growth whose benefits were monopolized by the 1%, soaring inequality, and widespread economic insecurity. (For the numbers, see Chapter 2 of Take Back Our Party.) As a society, we have to recognize that growth is not the answer. What we should care about is the actual welfare of ordinary families: whether they can afford health care, whether they can afford a place to live, whether they can go to college, whether they can retire, and so on. Those are the things our economic platform should focus on—not the myth that a rising tide lifts all boats.

Now, the issue on everyone’s minds is electability. Sure, we may want Medicare for All—but what most people want more than anything else is to defeat President Trump. And many people think that the most electable candidate is the most right-wing candidate. This is based on the theory of the median voter. The idea is that you can line up all voters on an ideological spectrum, and they will vote for the candidate who is closest to them—which means that we want to nominate someone in the middle (or, more accurately, someone just to the left of Trump).

The median voter theory is nonsense. If it were true, Donald Trump would not be president today. Nor would the Republicans have a majority of the Senate, and a majority of governorships, and a majority of state legislatures. They have achieved this electoral success despite running far to the right of where most Americans stand on just about every issue—immigration, abortion, gay rights, taxes, you name it.

We have to give people a reason to vote for us. The problem is, for decades, Democrats have not given people a reason to vote for them. Once upon a time, we were the party of the people—of workers, the New Deal, and the social safety net. Then (for reasons discussed in Chapter 1) we became the party of finance, technology, innovation, and economic growth—the party of the 1%, claiming that we were also the party of the 99%. Our talking points became economic growth, fiscal responsibility, and technocratic expertise—things that the Republicans claimed, too. And eventually, people forgot why they should vote for us.

The central problem of our time is inequality. The central political problem is that too many people feel left behind by our economic and political system. Those are the conditions that lead people to vote for a charlatan like Donald Trump. We are not going to win them back by saying that we will return to the “good old days” of the Obama administration, or that we are going to bring America together, or that we have impeccable educational and professional credentials, or that we are not as ridiculous as Trump. We tried that in 2016, and we lost.

I think it was one of Bill Clinton’s advisors who said that every election is ultimately about change versus more of the same. Right now, many people are hurting—because of stagnant wages, falling life expectancy, increasing out-of-pocket health care costs, the opioid epidemic, student debt, rising rents, insufficient retirement savings, and so on. And yet the Democratic establishment continues promising more of the same: incrementalism wrapped in phony post-partisan rhetoric, along with a healthy dose of “Isn’t Trump stupid?” That’s why we do well with well-educated professionals living in thriving urban centers—with people who are already doing pretty well. But this is not a recipe for victory.

Donald Trump offers change—xenophobia, white supremacism, and misogyny—even if many of his actual policies are standard conservative fare. We need to offer change as well: universal health care, free college, and Social Security. Our vision is more compelling than his. But we have to have the courage to offer that vision to the American people. Otherwise we will remain, as we were in 2016, the party of an increasingly bankrupt status quo.

That is all.

from Finance https://baselinescenario.com/2020/02/11/about-that-democratic-primary/

New Book & Giveaway: “How Much Money Do I Need to Retire?” 2nd Ed by Todd Tresidder

New Book & Giveaway: “How Much Money Do I Need to Retire?” 2nd Ed by Todd Tresidder

retire on beach


My man Todd Tresidder, aka The Financial Mentor, just released the 2nd edition of his popular book, “How Much Money Do I Need to Retire?“, and his publicist was kind enough to pass me a few copies to give out today…

If you’ve ever wondered this before (of course you have!), or want to see how it compares to *your* calculations and see if anything needs to be tweaked, answer the question down below and you’ll be automatically entered to win.

HINT: The answer is not a flat $3,000,000 which seems to be the latest “number” circulating around from “experts”!! If it was that simple (or attainable) we wouldn’t have a need for any of these books or blogs helping people out in our community! There’s a lot more than just a random number thrown out that determines the fate of your future, haha… And maybe Todd’s book can help you nail it down more?

More on the book, and Mr. Tresidder, here:

“How Much Money Do I Need to Retire?
Uncommon Financial Planning Wisdom for a Stress-Free Retirement”

how much need to retire book

From the press release:

Most so-called “experts” plug your numbers into a retirement formula to tell you how much money you need to retire. Unfortunately, the conventional approach is fundamentally flawed. If you fail to learn how retirement savings truly works, then you’ll either underspend and be miserable or overspend and run out of money.

How Much Money Do I Need to Retire takes you beyond the scientific facade of modern retirement planning. Author and former hedge fund manager Todd R. Tresidder has helped thousands of people find financial freedom through his website and podcast. Now you too can use his advice to take the guesswork out of your retirement planning.

In this book, you’ll learn:

  • Why the best way to describe most retirement estimates is garbage-in/garbage-out
  • The five critical assumptions that can destroy your financial security
  • How to reduce the amount you need to retire by as much as $600,000
  • Three strategies to maximize spending today while protecting for the future
  • How to calculate the amount of money you really need to retire on the first try without software, online calculators, or being a math genius

Tresidder’s book contains refreshingly straightforward, easy-to-understand, and concise advice on how to retire wealthy.

More from Amazon here: How Much Money Do I Need to Retire?: Uncommon Financial Planning Wisdom for a Stress-Free Retirement

And then more about Todd here: Todd R. Tresidder’s financial writing has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Smart Money Magazine, Investor’s Business Daily, Yahoo Finance, Bankrate.com, and more. He is a former hedge fund manager who “retired” at age 35 to become a financial consumer advocate and money coach. In his spare time he’s an outdoor recreational enthusiast with varied interests from backpacking and adventure travel to endurance running and cycling. He writes 9 months out of the year from his home in Reno, Nevada while his kids are in school and plays the rest of the year. You can learn more about Todd at FinancialMentor.com.

[His site btw is pretty killer too… Especially if you’re analytical and enjoy longer, more in-depth reads. He almost died a couple of years ago in a bad biking accident and came back even stronger and more passionate about this stuff than before! Haha… Super smart and nice guy 🙂 Even though he’s still pretty pissed he paid off his house instead of investing the $$$… (a fun little guest post he did here years ago)]

Sound like a book you want?

Answer this question down below in the comments or via email, and you’ll be automatically entered to win… We have THREE copies to give out so don’t be shy!

What’s your best guess at YOUR “number” so far? If you haven’t calculated it yet, what’s holding you back?

We’ll keep the giveaway open until the end of the weekend (midnight @ Sunday, 2/16/20), and you have to have a U.S. address to win. Good luck!

Here’s my “number” at the moment, based on the 4% rule and adjusted a little to include some padding. Also assumes my mortgage will be paid off by then and we won’t be having a million more kids (or dogs).


Over half way there so far! Not that I’ll truly “retire” at all, but it would be nice to work on stuff without thinking about money 🙂 That’s true freedom to me.

Your turn!

PS: Here’s a spreadsheet I use if you want to run some quick and dirty numbers on this stuff: Early Retirement Spreadsheet. Feel free to steal it, and then use Todd’s book to refine it!

*Links to book above are Amazon affiliate links


[Prefer to get these blog posts *weekly* instead of daily? Sign up to my new weekly digest here, and get other thoughts on life/business/money as well: jmoney.biz/newsletter]

from Finance https://www.budgetsaresexy.com/new-book-how-much-money-do-i-need-to-retire-2nd-ed-by-todd-tresidder/

Side Hustle #79: Flipping Guitars! ($10,000/year)

Side Hustle #79: Flipping Guitars! ($10,000/year)

flipping guitars

[Welcome to another installment of our Side Hustle Series!! Daniella from ILikeToDabble.com stops by the blog today to share her and her wife’s experience (and profits!) selling guitars over the past few years… Which matches up nicely with our previous hustles of flipping vintage watches, classic video games, high-fashion clothing, and even collectible sneakers! But today it’s all about the *music gear* and how it can help you earn some extra money on the side… Take it away, Daniella!]


My wife Alexandra is the real mastermind behind all of this. It all started with her own guitar collection.

She’s been a collector for years and started selling off some of her collection. She took the profit from some of those first sales and applied it towards buying other guitars to flip on platforms like eBay, Sweetwater and Reverb (platforms more specific to music gear).

Now she mostly focuses on eBay and I help with taking photos, listing detail and shipping (or try to :D).

What It Entails

First off, with something like flipping guitars for profit online, the research for someone who is obsessed with guitars is much easier than for someone who knows absolutely nothing about guitars.

So if you know nothing about guitars, it is going to be much harder for you. However, you can still use these basic steps for whatever category of items you decide to try flipping. (Start with what you know).


Before we purchase anything to flip, we always refer to eBay search.

Important things to keep in mind in the initial research phase are the specs such as the guitar brand, where it was made, if it is new, used, needs repairs, the year, model, style, color and how rare it is (was there only a certain number of them made?). You want to be able to actually make a profit from your flip which means your revenue sales exceed the cost.

We look for listings that stand out as having a much lower price vs. the other similar listings on eBay, and then also compare listing prices to other platforms like Reverb and Sweetwater to see if we see anything cheaper there. Often, there are people who aren’t aware of the market price of the guitar they are trying to sell, and we’re able to snag a deal that we’ll likely be able to flip for as much as 3 to 5 times the price they listed it for.

Market Price

In order to figure out the market price of a guitar you want to flip, start with eBay search. The guitar that has the highest price among those listed in “New” condition is the current market price for that guitar.

We normally filter by completed and sold items on eBay to see what certain brands recently sold for. However, you can leave sold items unchecked to see what the current supply and demand might be as well.

ebay filtering

With filtering on Completed Listings, you’ll see how many went unsold. If there are a large amount of listings but only one sold, we will steer clear of that specific guitar or at least do some digging as to why.

You can use filtering in a number of ways in this research phase such as also filtering on Authorized Sellers and Authenticity Verified.

You’re looking for the average price across not just eBay, but the many other platforms that sell these items as wel. This average is what we aim to list for.

So if a guitar is listed for $860 and we buy it for $300, we will most likely list it for about $850 with some add-ons like free picks or bump up the price a little bit more but throw in a free case. Anything to make our listing seem more appealing than any existing competing listings.

Buying Inventory

Once we’ve done the research and found items we know we can make a profit off of and are ready to buy, we are then ready to start communicating with sellers. eBay is a two way street so be ready to be just as an effective buyer as you want to be a seller.

When purchasing inventory to flip, you need to be extremely detail oriented. A photo of a guitar with some scratches can easily be doctored on eBay. We know this because we’ve seen them and received guitars in lower condition than they were listed for.

Some common questions we ask sellers are:

  • If they can send us pictures of the guitar in any angle that might’ve been missed in the listing
  • If they can provide any details that might be missing from the listing, such as where the guitar was made
  • If they can be more specific on its condition
  • If it need repairs or has any scratches
  • If there is a case included

Then we will usually go back and forth in negotiation to get the lowest price possible. Usually this also gets us more freebies like picks and cases (both hard and soft) that we can throw in our own future sales.

Listing the Inventory

Once we receive the guitar and everything checks out (and it doesn’t need repairs) we list the guitar pretty immediately.

What goes into our listings:

  • Using the correct keywords so buyers can easily find it
  • High quality photos of every possible angle (with a plain background that looks clean)
  • A real description about the guitar specs with as much detail as possible. Do not include some long story about how you got the guitar because people don’t care. They want to get the details such as brand, model, style, color, where it was made, rarity, condition, and any additional details that need to be disclosed about the condition like scratches, repair needs, etc. Anything you can think of that might be important, include it.
  • Include any freebies in the listing like picks and guitar cases
  • The type of sale and if it is an auction or fixed price. We almost always do fixed prices for guitars.
  • The minimum offer you are willing to accept.
  • Add on shipping prices which include things like weight, dimensions and how far you have to ship guitars. We live in the Midwest and we aren’t going to ship you a guitar to California unless you are willing to pay for the shipping. Sorry folks, free shipping for guitars is not worth it for you as the seller unless you add it into the price.

As long as you choose the correct keywords, it isn’t hard to appear first on eBay search. But it is much easier with a better seller rating.

To figure out the best keywords to use, scan the current 1st and 2nd position listings, and then use them as an example to work off of. You can also use this keyword research tool: https://keywordtool.io/ebay

Here are 2 guitars we recently listed for sale:

guitars for sale

And this bad boy we just sold for $800 (with shipping, and bought for a little under $300): Ibanez AF 155 (which we had some trouble selling for awhile)

Ibanez AF 155 guitar

How Much We Make Flipping Guitars

Last year we made a little under $10,000 flipping guitars and accessories on eBay, and this is on the side of our full time jobs.

Some months we make as little as $750, and our biggest month so far has been $3,000 profit. However, it is always a little slower up until right before the holidays, and there are some months where we don’t sell anything. The holidays through the new year seem to be the busiest time.

Considering most of the work is done from home (besides shipping) and only takes a couple of hours a week, I think we did pretty well for ourselves last year.

The income isn’t entirely passive as you still have to keep in communication with the buyer (and occasionally they can be difficult!) as well as deal with USPS support when packages are late, however I consider it partially passive since once a guitar is acquired and listed you’re not putting in any more time until it’s sold.

Tips for AMPing Things Up

Our top tips for really AMPing up your listings for quicker sales, and to ensure your seller profile is put in the best position to sell more in the future, are:

  • Using the correct keywords so buyers find your listing and see it before competing listings
  • Kick ass photos!
  • Making sure you charge enough for shipping (this is a big one!!)
  • Freebies (add-ons like free guitar picks, cases, and other accessories to make the listing more appealing)
  • Making sure you are satisfying the buyer’s needs as much as possible, and continually maintaining a good seller rating

Here is a snapshot of my wife’s profile and seller rating:

brazenhussy13 ebay profile

Pros and Cons

A pro to selling something like guitars is that they are high price items and are easy to make more of a profit on than something like selling clothes (unless those clothes are mega brands like Gucci).

The con to selling guitars is their size and dimensions as they can sometimes be tricky to ship (especially if you don’t have boxes on hand). We usually save all of the boxes that our inventory comes in, and then re-ship them out in the same packaging. When this doesn’t work and we run out of boxes, you can get them on Amazon for a reasonable price (measure the boxes you need first before you order them so you get the correct size).

For shipping, also be aware of the dimensions your boxes are because the price for the dimensions can override the weight.

PayPal’s print and ship is often about 30% cheaper than shipping directly through USPS (if you know the weight and dimensions).

How You Can Get Started + Resources

Anyone can sell anything online. I truly believe that.

I have a woman who is a reader of mine who has been able to flip clothes from thrift stores on Poshmark and has consistently done so for the past 6 months. She was on disability and really struggled for a while to make extra money. Poshmark has helped her immensely.

So no, you don’t have to be an obsessed guitar collector to make money on eBay. You can flip about anything. We also don’t just sell guitars, we also sell musical accessories like amps, brand name items like purses and shoes, and computer accessories like hard drives.

Our favorite resources and tools to aid us in our flipping are:

Other platforms you can resell items on are:

Some helpful posts for flipping online:

Final Thoughts…

If you have no knowledge or interest in guitars, you might think this article can’t help you with reselling online, but you can take the basic idea behind this and tweak it for your own niche interest(s). It all comes down to what you’re interested in.

Neither one of us are musicians or are in the music industry at all. We are just a couple of gals in I.T. that have a little fun with our side gigs on the weekends. It’s kind of crazy when you start something like flipping guitars and only think you are going to do it a couple of times for the extra money. Then 3 years later you are still doing it and there are sellers that come specifically to you on eBay!!

We kind of got addicted to it. You have the rush of negotiating to get a good deal up front, and then the BIG rush from the sale at the end.

The extra money has been amazing too! At first, it helped us expand the variety of our inventory, but it wasn’t something my wife really wanted to grow into this crazy huge guitar selling business (at least not yet) so we didn’t invest every cent of our profits back into the hustle.

We’ve used some of the money to pay off credit card debt we had a couple of years ago, and then some more towards our current car loan. We’ve also put some of it in our investment portfolio of stocks outside of retirement, set some aside for our current house renovation work, and also some towards the “new house fund”.

This all came about from experimenting with selling stuff we already had. We know not everyone has guitars laying around the house, but if you have other material possessions that you have thought about selling but not sure if it would work, try it anyway.

You might be surprised.


Daniella and her wife Alexandra are both side-entrepreneurs and cat lovers (a little too much, they have 5 of them). They are based out of Missouri and work in I.T. for their day jobs which is actually how they met. Currently, they are working towards financial freedom away from these corporate jobs and their side gigs help them towards this goal. You can find them at ILikeToDabble.com.

For a look at other similar hustles we’ve featured over the years:

For all 79 side hustle ideas, click here.


[Prefer to get these blog posts *weekly* instead of daily? Sign up to my new weekly digest here, and get other thoughts on life/business/money as well: jmoney.biz/newsletter]

from Finance https://www.budgetsaresexy.com/side-hustle-79-making-money-flipping-guitars/

Take Back Our Party, Print Edition

By James Kwak

I’ve never wanted to write a book as much as I wanted to write Take Back Our Party. And I’ve never wanted people to read one of my books as much as this one—in particular, before the 2020 Democratic primary season ends. For that reason, I bypassed the usual publication route. (As my editor at Pantheon liked to say, the period for turning a manuscript into a book is, for unknown reasons, the same as the gestation period of a human. In his defense, he did get both 13 Bankers and White House Burning out in around 5–6 months.)

cover imageInstead, David Dayen, executive editor of The American Prospect, agreed to publish the book online, and it went live here in December. In addition, I wanted there to be a print edition for people (like me) who, well, prefer reading things on paper—and for mailing to people who should read it. Ryan Grim at Strong Arm Press gamely agreed to publish it, knowing that it was already available on the Internet. Jordan Jones did the interior design and Soohee Cho did the cover. The print edition has a small number of corrections, it has real footnotes with accurate page citations (something you can’t do with Internet-style hyperlinking), and it has a descriptive index so you can look up your favorite neoliberal from the past three decades.

You can order a print or ebook copy via the Strong Arm website (or, of course, from your least-favorite monopolist). They should start shipping on Tuesday, and I believe the ebook is available right now. The online version at the Prospect will still be available for the foreseeable future.

I’m pretty sure I’m going to lose money on this, taking the book design costs into account, but that was never the point. The point was for people to read it. So do that now.

from Finance https://baselinescenario.com/2020/02/07/take-back-our-party-print-edition/

My Fave Reads This Month 📖

My Fave Reads This Month 📖

book brain

Happy Friday!!

Been catching a lot of killer articles in the space lately and they’re all dumped below…

If they spark something for you over the weekend let me know!

And also if there’s anything life changing YOU’VE seen lately 🙂



wheel of fortune

How I Made $39,000 on Wheel of Fortune via Dads and Dollars — “Without going into too much detail, I will point out that the first round was what is called a “perfect round”. The wheel was very, very good to me in that round, and I never relinquished control. Oh, and it was a jackpot round, which I hit, and I got a half-car. And I had been worried I would fail epically on television.”

The Difference Between Getting By and Getting Better via Raptitude — “I decided it was worth getting better at this one small corner of life. So I began to make a game out of having warmer and more deliberate checkout exchanges. I speak up, engage, smile. It amounts to a straightforward switching of intentions: each purchase is now a chance to become a slightly more personable customer (and person), rather than simply the final step of the shopping process.”

Exposed! Mr. Money Mustache’s 2019 Bachelor Spending! via Mr. Money Mustache — “My expenses are really easy to track: I funnel all my spending through a rewards credit card, which saves me about $2000 each year… Meanwhile, I hook up a third party financial app to automatically monitor these transactions, alert me to any unusual activity, and – the best part – automatically categorize and add everything up for me. I’ve been using one called Truebill for a couple of years*, and it has the simplest interface of anything I’ve tried.”

front door

How $39 Changed Our Mortgage Payoff Journey Forever via She Picks Up Pennies  — “On May 28, 2015, I made our first extra payment toward the principal. I paid $39.04. It almost seems cute, but that small amount was so powerful. In so many ways, it was the first domino that led us to exactly where we are now.”

A fun (and highly profitable) psychological trick to try on someone via Quora — “It’s called “The Five Dollar Auction.” You stand up in front of the group, and hold up a five dollar bill. You explain that you will auction this five dollar bill off, and the highest bidder gets it, even if the high bid only a dime. Bidding starts at 10 cents, and goes up in increments of 10 cents or more. There’s just one trick to this auction, and that is that when the auction ends, whoever has the second highest bid also has to pay, but doesn’t get anything.” [h/t to my evil friend and biz partner, Nate St. Pierre, for passing this one over to me :)]

11 Reasons Not to Become Famous via Tim Ferriss — “13 years, 5 books, 1,000+ blog posts, and nearly 500M podcast downloads later, I’ve learned a few things about the promises and perils of seeking fame…. If you suddenly had 100,000 or 1,000,000 or 10,000,000 more followers, what might happen? I thought I knew, and I was naive.”

FIRE t-shirts

Apparel that shows your FIRE pride by Accidental FIRE — “You have it together, you’re investing wisely and getting closer to financial independence every day. Show the world that you’ve chosen to live differently, and on your own terms!”

The Shirley Temple King via @chezspence — “Just found this instagram account that’s a kid who calls himself the Shirley Temple King and goes to restaurants and gives brutally honest reviews of their shirley temples. It’s so pure and I love him so much.”

Treasure Fever via Hakai Magazine — “Nearly three million vessels lie wrecked on the Earth’s ocean floor – from old canoes to the Titanic – and likely less than one percent have been explored.”

jarret freeman

The American Dream vs. The American Trap via Daily Collegian — “I have had the pleasure of traveling to about twenty countries and meeting many young people along my travels. I learned a lot about these people through my experiences, but I have learned even more about myself and the country I call home. No experience has compared to my encounter with Maria. I will never meet her again, but I will also never forget her and what she taught me.”

Google Flights — “A super easy way to price flights with filtering for airlines, dates, times and class of service. You can even track flights, see how the cost compares to average, and receive email updates on prices.” – mentioned in 5 Strategies to Improve Your Cash Flow and Savings via XY Planning Network

You Can Literally Sell Your Poop For Cash via Scary Mommy — “I know. I KNOW. Who on God’s green earth would want to donate their dung? Well, according to The New York Times, quite a few people would. And not only are these people making a pretty penny for handing over their chocolate lava, but they are helping to save lives in the process.”


Video of The Month:

Obvious to you. Amazing to others. by Derek Sivers — “Any creator of anything knows this feeling: You experience someone else’s innovative work. It’s beautiful, brilliant, breath-taking. You’re stunned. Their ideas are unexpected and surprising, but perfect. You think, “I never would have thought of that. How do they even come up with that? It’s genius!” Afterwards, you think, “My ideas are so obvious. I’ll never be as inventive as that.”” [Hat tip to Working Mom Life for passing this over to me… This is so true, and I catch myself almost every single day wondering how I’m still able to blog here, haha…]


Premonition of the Century:

no escaping telephones

[H/T: @RetireManifesto]

Happy telephoning 🙂


[Prefer to get these blog posts *weekly* instead of daily? Sign up to my new weekly digest here, and get other thoughts on life/business/money as well: jmoney.biz/newsletter]

from Finance https://www.budgetsaresexy.com/my-fave-reads-this-month/

Economism on Marketplace

By James Kwak

David Brancaccio of Marketplace has started a new radio project called Econ Extra Credit: reading a first-year economics textbook, one chapter per week, along with his listeners. Luckily, he chose one of the textbooks produced by the CORE project, a group of economists who set out to rewrite the economics curriculum in the wake of the financial crisis and Great Recession.

David invited me to talk with him about “Economics 101” and the one-sided impression of the world that people often take away from the class—especially those for whom it is their only economics class. This, of course, was the subject of my 2017 book Economism: Bad Economics and the Rise of Inequality.

You can hear the whole interview here. Enjoy!

from Finance https://baselinescenario.com/2020/02/06/economism-on-marketplace/

10 Ways to Help You Get Closer To Your Best Life

10 Ways to Help You Get Closer To Your Best Life

pacman food


So continuing our trend of sharing great ideas from the community this week, here’s a handful more tips and ways to *think* about things differently today. More so around life and being a better person than finances, but of course they’re all intertwined when it comes to Living Your Best Life.

I hope you find something here that resonates with you!!

If you missed yesterday’s tips, click here next: 4 Great Ways to Spread Investments Around


YOU 2.0

“A concept I teach in my book, Manage Money Like a BOSS, is “YOU 2.0”.

Essentially you ask yourself what would the next level version of me do? How would I dress? What would I say yes to? What would I say no to? How would I conduct my business?

I tell people to create an alter ego to check in with. So when I’m faced with a decision relative to my business, or my life even, I ask “what would Queen Christine do?”

Christine Luken

[I love this idea so much… Used to do something similar at college parties when I wanted to feel what it was like to be a rock star (I’d go as “Johnny Love” and my friends would all be my band members, haha…), but in Adult World I can see this working well too 😉 Alternate You is always more confident than normal you!]


Celebrating the 1sts of The Month

About 5 years ago, my wife and I started a tradition of celebrating the 1st of every month. It sounds silly, but we love it.

We do this because:

1) It began when we bought our first rental property together. Rent checks come in on the 1st of each month, and even though most (sometimes all) of the rent goes to pay the property expenses, this was our first taste of ‘passive’ income.

2) It encourages us to talk about finances and check in with each other regularly. Over the years we’ve watched our plans come to fruition, which reinforces how important our communication is.

3) It makes celebration a regular activity in our household. Small things or large things, everything in our life deserves to be celebrated. We never forget how lucky we are.

5 A.M. Joel

[Extra credit: putting Bone Thugs and Harmony’s “1st of tha Month” on rotation during these meetings ;)]


Being Selfless w/ Your Food

I heard someone I admire once say “It’s hard not to be selfish,” and I appreciated her honesty because I think that’s true for most of us, certainly for me.

A small, non-money trick I do to combat my natural selfishness is I try to always give the best of the food in our fridge to whomever is around, usually my husband. And I don’t tell him. That’s another trick: do something selfless and keep it to yourself.

– Kathleen

[I tried this the other day!! I really REALLY wanted the last brownie we made in our house, but as soon as I went to grab it (because of course I had to grab it before someone else did!) I remembered this message and stopped myself in my tracts. I actually had to physically remove myself from the house so I wouldn’t continue to be tempted, and I $hit you not – when I came back home that brownie was long gone!! No idea who consumed it, but I know they enjoyed every morsel ;)]


Using Clothes as a Diversion

I lost my husband a few years ago and I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me. I wanted them to find something else to talk about me apart from my loss, so I bought new stylish clothes.

People would still talk about my loss, but they could not help talking about how good I looked. I had not known until then that I (apparently) had a beautiful structure, and people started looking at me in a different way – not disrespectfully, but appreciating what they saw.

My girlfriends and female colleagues kept on saying how beautifully the bodycon clothes fitted me. I also bought very stylish non-bodycon dresses. At first I was self-conscious, but now I am used to it after five years of both old and new colleagues mentioning the same thing.

Fortunately, I had the disposable income to change my wardrobe and this was really good for my mental health.


In re: to our post on when it make sense to spend more on your looks

[And if you’re wondering what the heck a “bodycon” dress is like I was, here’s the answer 😉 “A bodycon dress is a tight figure-hugging dress, often made from stretchy material. The name derives from “body confidence”.]


Secret Love Notes

When I was little, my Mum used to sneak love letters into my lunch box.

It was embarrassing as a kid… I’d pull out my sandwich at school and the wrapper would have a big “I LOVE YOU” written across the top. Sometimes she’d draw love hearts all over my bananas and oranges with a sharpie.

As much as I told Mum to stop doing it, I secretly liked it.

– 5 A.M. Joel

egg love notes

Love reminders I wrote for my wife while making her hard boiled eggs for the week. 🙂

[My boy Joel again!! I’m telling you, such a nice addition to my mornings seeing his notes come through and giving me a few seconds of contemplation… This note prompted me to write a huge “I 🖤 you” on a flap of a cardboard box I knew my wife would come across later in the day – and it totally made her day. Next up is sneaking into my kids’ lunches and seeing what I can scribble on :)]


The Back up Store

I’m a practicing minimalist and consider stores a storage place that hold every single item I need (my backup options). I just need to give the store some money when I want to use it.

– Kate

In re: to my post the other day on failing as an adult (and minimalist!)

[Such a great shift in mindset, isn’t it? Let SOMEONE ELSE store all the things you’ll need in the future and don’t even worry about it! What a concept! :)]


And that’s all for today! Hope you found something good here!

Any other tips/tricks you guys use that you want to pass over?

Went through some of my old blogs posts and came across a few other snippets that might spark some ideas as well. From 19 Ways to Be Better Today Than Yesterday:

  • Say sorry for something that wasn’t your fault
  • Pick up some pieces of trash in your neighborhood
  • Ask a colleague if there’s anything you can do to help them out (if you work from home, put up a note on social media like “I’ve got 10 free minutes – anyone need help with anything?”)
  • Fold the laundry or do the dishes or cook dinner, or do whatever else your significant other typically does – but *beat them* to it. When they look shocked, just press your fingers to their lips Dumb & Dumber style and whisper, “Shhhhh…”

shh dumb and dumber gif

Doesn’t take much to make someone’s day 😉


[Prefer to get these blog posts *weekly* instead of daily? Sign up to my new weekly digest here, and get other thoughts on life/business/money as well: jmoney.biz/newsletter]

from Finance https://www.budgetsaresexy.com/10-ways-to-help-you-get-closer-to-your-best-life/