The Simple Dollar Morning Roundup: Truck Tune-Up Edition

My truck was severely out of alignment, felt almost wobbly to drive it, had worn out tires, severely needed an oil change, and had almost unusable windshield wiper blades. I fixed it all yesterday. Total cost: $1,500 (even after some shopping around). Ouch.

15 Cleverly Cheap Ways to Watch Your Hygiene The picture alone is worth the visit, but the article is good, too. (@ the digerati life)

How to Have a Successful Budget Meeting With Your Spouse I find that regular conversations are always helpful. (@ lazy man and money)

Beating the High Cost of Weddings: How We Did It and How You Can, Too Our best wedding tactic was to involve everyone who came in from out of town in wedding preparation. We held a small party at the reception hall for out-of-town guests as well as the most immediate family, where everyone talked and very gradually assembled things for the reception. This eliminated hall setup costs and was a lot of fun. (@ get rich slowly)

The Simple Dollar Retro: How I Made Brown Bag Lunches Work For Me Most people think brown bag lunches suck. I happen to like them – here’s how I make them palatable to me.

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  1. Laura says:

    Talking about finances as a couple is a good advice. It took a bit the first time to set up mutual goals and accounts, but now we just update each other every week.

  2. Trent,
    I feel your pain. I dread those unexpected trips to the auto-repair shop, even with the emergency fund in place.

  3. silver says:

    Right around the time that I got engaged, I helped out at a friend’s wedding with setup and everything, like you described. Everyone involved was completely stressed out and most of them didn’t enjoy the wedding as a result. The bride and groom, of course, didn’t notice (I don’t blame them for not noticing, you have a lot on your mind on your wedding day). But because of that, I decided that I’d rather pay extra and let my friends and family actually enjoy the my wedding.

  4. Erin says:

    I love to have the chance to brag about how much my wedding cost. Total cost was around $2,500 for the most beautiful wedding I have ever been to.

    The invitations were done by my sister and me from wedding card stock purchased at Staples.
    I can sew, so I made my dress, my husband wore his best suit, we did not have attendants. A good friend, who worked for a florist when she was younger, went with me to Sam’s Club and we ordered fresh flowers. When they came in, she made the table arrangements and my bouquet as our gift. The flowers were gorgeous. The service was at my church, so my pastor and the organist, both were also friends, were there. We, of course, gave them horariums for their services. It was a morning service, which I had always wanted. The reception was a catered champaign brunch (breakfast food does not cost as much) held in the church’s fellowship hall. No need to rent additional location for the reception. The cateror was a member of the church and a friend so she gave us a very reasonable price on the food and cake. I ordered the champaign in bulk from a liquor store and so got a discount. Music during the reception was recorded. Some friends and relatives who fancied themselves photographers volunteered to talk wedding pictures (after the service so as not to enterupt the ceremony) and then we had disposable cameras on the tables at the reception. A friend provided the disposables and had them all printed as our wedding gift.

    All in all, the wedding was very simple and uncomplicated so everyone enjoyed it, including the bride and groom. We had time to visit and enjoy our guests and when it was over it was already paid for so there were no lasting financial drain. It was the wedding I had dreamed of and I am sure that the memory of it will be as good as any wedding costing 10 times as much.

  5. Rick says:

    Yes, vehicles are extremely expensive to operate. My car costs over $200 a month, and I’m not even making any payments on it. But when you factor in insurance, tires, oil changes, general repair, and gas (and I get 40mpg), it’s terribly expensive.

  6. Jaime says:

    Wow, it was expensive. How much were your tires??

  7. Tiffany says:

    I’m sure you’re already planning on it, but I thought I’d mention that I’d love to hear your thoughts on Christmas. Buying for the whole family, creating a memorable but frugal experience, etc. This will be my first Christmas with a child that actually knows what’s going on and I can’t wait!

  8. Jim says:

    wow. sounds like I have a clone of your truck. looking to get it all taken care of this weekend.

  9. KoryO says:

    Best way I know to cut costs on a wedding? Vegas, baby!! That’s where me and my sweetie got hitched a little over three years ago. Compared to Erin, I was extravagant (5k, plus or minus), but….got to actually enjoy my ceremony because the resort took care of the details, had very beautiful orchids in my bouquet, and got to treat everyone who attended with us (about 25 people) to dinner at a wonderful restaurant afterwards. It was the best wedding dinner any of us had ever been to, mainly because they all could order whatever they wanted off the menu instead of choking down catered rubber chicken. As for entertainment….well, we set ‘em loose on the Strip and they made their own fun.

    Anyone who spends the so-called “average” wedding budget is freakin’ nuts!

  10. lorax says:

    Tires are expensive… but you can usually get decent deals at the big box retailers like BJs and Costco.

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