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Re: Instant coffee

Folgers Singles. Like tea bags, only coffee.

I've tried about everything possible to have a decent cup of coffee in the mornings when I'm on hiking trips. I always come back to the Folgers Singles.
by tbradnc
Thu Jan 15, 2015 8:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Instant coffee
Replies: 34
Views: 3343

Re: Wifi Thermostat??

ecobee Smart SI here. Love it.
by tbradnc
Thu Jan 15, 2015 7:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wifi Thermostat??
Replies: 22
Views: 2251

Re: SIMPLE IRA Question

Now that this has been discussed I'm fairly certain all the employer has to do is: 1. Throw away the 5305-S that's on file somewhere. 2. Replace it with a 5304-S. 3. Open a SIMPLE with Vanguard and add OP as a plan participant. 4. Announce to plan participants that Vanguard is now an investment opti...
by tbradnc
Mon Jan 12, 2015 6:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SIMPLE IRA Question
Replies: 29
Views: 1383

Re: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?

I'm probably the only person who actually sat down with a quarter and flipped it a while. :) 60 flips, end result 30 heads, 30 tails - like magic. The real excitement came from flipping tails 3 times in a row at the very end to catch up. So if I met a man every morning with my $3 lunch money and we ...
by tbradnc
Mon Jan 12, 2015 11:55 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?
Replies: 295
Views: 16554

Re: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?

Here in Appalachia where I live scratch off lottery tickets are very popular with the poor.

I was talking to a guy playing them the other day and he thought that 1:4 odds meant that if bought 4 tickets one of them should be a winner.
by tbradnc
Sun Jan 11, 2015 6:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can you make money betting on random coin flips?
Replies: 295
Views: 16554

Re: retirement coming, health insurance?

You can look at Obamacare or a private market policy. Either way (with deductibles, co-pays, and premiums), you are probably looking at $500 to $600 per person per month. There is no Obamacare "or" private market policy. Aside for the Medicaid expansion for low-income people Obamacare (at...
by tbradnc
Sun Jan 11, 2015 6:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: retirement coming, health insurance?
Replies: 26
Views: 2907

Re: SIMPLE IRA Question

The 5305 and 5304 difference is a distinction made by the employer to define their plan when they establish it (which is literally just 4-5 pages sitting in a filing cabinet somewhere). It means the employer will either deposit money to a place they choose (5305), or the employee can choose where i...
by tbradnc
Sun Jan 11, 2015 5:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SIMPLE IRA Question
Replies: 29
Views: 1383

Re: SIMPLE IRA Question

You might want to ask your employer if the company would be willing to setup a SIMPLE with Vanguard. It's fairly trivial. When I first setup our SIMPLE I opened it with Fidelity and filled out a 5305-SIMPLE form. I quickly regretted not using Vanguard but my employees were happy with Fidelity so I o...
by tbradnc
Sat Jan 10, 2015 8:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SIMPLE IRA Question
Replies: 29
Views: 1383

Re: Mac Antivirus

Yosemite! I did know that. I'm running that release. :)
by tbradnc
Wed Jan 07, 2015 8:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Antivirus
Replies: 15
Views: 1272

Re: Mac Antivirus

I would (and did) upgrade to Mavericks - the most up to date release of OS X.
by tbradnc
Wed Jan 07, 2015 7:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Antivirus
Replies: 15
Views: 1272

Re: Mac Antivirus

ClamXav is free, doesn't take much space, and consistently gets high ratings for Mac AV software. It's what I use. Here is a link to a relatively recent review: http://www.macworld.com/article/2152047/advice-from-an-apple-tech-clamxav-is-a-valuable-troubleshooting-tool.html http://www.clamxav.com/
by tbradnc
Wed Jan 07, 2015 6:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Antivirus
Replies: 15
Views: 1272

Re: Mac Antivirus

Thanks. I'll keep that in mind. Did you have a second browser on your computer already that you could use when Safari wouldn't open? I only have Safari but am now thinking maybe I should have a backup just in case. Without a backup it seems I would have no access to the web to do anything! Could I ...
by tbradnc
Wed Jan 07, 2015 5:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Antivirus
Replies: 15
Views: 1272

Re: Mac Antivirus

May I suggest running adwaremedic. http://www.adwaremedic.com/index.php.

I am very embarrassed to admit I was infected with some malware that prevented Safari from starting - it would crash every time. This free application fixed me right up.
by tbradnc
Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Antivirus
Replies: 15
Views: 1272

Re: Transcendental meditation

I've had a daily meditation practice for years. I practice a form of Buddhist meditation called Vipassana. I agree that sitting with a group once a week is a good way to anchor and maintain a practice. There is a very good book titled "Mindfulness in Plain English" that can be purchased or...
by tbradnc
Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Transcendental meditation
Replies: 38
Views: 2297

Re: Envie Mobile - new Verizon MVNO

3G only....
by tbradnc
Tue Jan 06, 2015 3:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Envie Mobile - new Verizon MVNO
Replies: 1
Views: 473

Re: [Annual POLL] What was your 2014 return?

7.4% with a 47/53 allocation.
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 02, 2015 10:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Annual POLL] What was your 2014 return?
Replies: 144
Views: 14091

Re: PenFed CD rates up. 2% max.

It was not easy to get my account opened at NASA, and their customer service staff is neither professional nor helpful nor friendly. While you cannot "pull" money into NASA CD via ACH for 60 days, you can easily ACH "push" it into your (requisite $5) share savings account immedi...
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 02, 2015 6:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PenFed CD rates up. 2% max.
Replies: 29
Views: 4511

Re: PenFed 80th Anniversary

I would happily use the older website and previous practices for 3% CD's. :)
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 02, 2015 3:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PenFed 80th Anniversary
Replies: 2
Views: 481

Re: Home automation

One thing to consider is what effect all of the automation will have on prospective buyers if you should ever want to sell your home. Several years back (6), I also got the home automation bug and spent a small fortune replacing switches, outlets, etc. - even put a device on our water heater that wo...
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 02, 2015 1:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home automation
Replies: 11
Views: 1783

Re: Why donate to charity?

This reminds me of the discussions/attitude of keeping one's mortgage for the tax benefit. Yes there is a tax benefit - but it should never be a primary motivator. Indeed. I think a lot of people don't know or understand about the math aspect - that you're only getting a deduction equal to your tax...
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 02, 2015 10:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Why donate to charity?

Can people read the thread? OP has already explained he donates and volunteers. I apologize if my snark was unjustified. In the future it is best to edit the original post if the initial presentation of the situation is markedly different than what was intended or what is relevant to a discussion o...
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 02, 2015 10:14 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Bond/Stock flip in Roth - quick question

Is it possible to exchange a pair funds between a taxable account and a Roth without creating a taxable event?

Like so:

Current: Roth=Fund 1 Taxable=Fund 2
New: Roth=Fund 2 Taxable=Fund 1

Identical dollar amounts in both funds.
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 02, 2015 10:07 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond/Stock flip in Roth - quick question
Replies: 3
Views: 461

Re: PenFed CD rates up. 2% max.

Alliant's 48-mo CD is still at 2.1% APY. The "Rodney Dangerfield" of CDs, I suspect. Joining credit unions is a bit of a pain. Penfed was definitely worth it for the 5% cash back on gas Visa and their CD rates from time to time. I also joined Navy Federal Credit Union because they have go...
by tbradnc
Thu Jan 01, 2015 8:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PenFed CD rates up. 2% max.
Replies: 29
Views: 4511

Re: PenFed CD rates up. 2% max.

Ally has a 5 year for 2%.... Penfed's 5 year is 1.75%.
by tbradnc
Thu Jan 01, 2015 6:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PenFed CD rates up. 2% max.
Replies: 29
Views: 4511

No surprise CD rates from Penfed

Well, got up this morning and was hoping to get a late Christmas present from PenFed via an announcement of attractive CD rates but no joy.. :(
by tbradnc
Thu Jan 01, 2015 9:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: No surprise CD rates from Penfed
Replies: 4
Views: 1238

Re: Why donate to charity?

So act of making the donation of $1 could also be looked at as costing me $0.67 and the IRS $0.33 Right - you can donate and get a discount equal to your federal tax bracket if you itemize. Donating to charity isn't a way to save money - if you want to have the most money in your pocket don't donat...
by tbradnc
Thu Jan 01, 2015 9:45 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: What do you drive, and why?

When I'm not eating generic Cheerio's off the floor trying to be frugal I drive a '14 Nissan Versa.

Our other car is an '07 Ridgeline. I went through a decade of leasing a new BMW every 2 years and finally went through withdrawal...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 5:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you drive, and why?
Replies: 205
Views: 17046

Re: Vanguard Cash Edge Service Link

It will be interesting to see if the outside accounts you've added update over time to reflect changes in value. I have a dozen or so Penfed CD's and never, ever, not-even-once, did the values update after interested was added back to the certificates each month. It was a total pain to fix - I had t...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 5:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Cash Edge Service Link
Replies: 11
Views: 2001

Re: Cheapest Way to Watch Netflix

I feel really stupid... Happens to me regularly on this forum, which is why it's one of my favorites. I have no desire to be the smartest guy in the room. Cheapest way to watch Netflix is on a TV with wireless capability or get a Google Chromecast if you have a TV with HDMI input that isn't interne...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 2:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheapest Way to Watch Netflix
Replies: 27
Views: 3051

Re: Why donate to charity?

Having set up a nonprofit, the point of the tax break in the code is that money that would have otherwise gone to the IRS is redirected to the charity of your choosing. It was never meant to lower your taxes, though there could be such an effect if it kicks you into a lower marginal bracket. So tec...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 2:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Why donate to charity?

Outside of some rare exceptions, you will not see a net benefit to your bottom line by donating to charity. This is what I was wondering and has been answered. I wasn't trying to be a Scrooge or give a reason not to donate to charity. So: 1. If you want to have more money in your pocket and that's ...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?

I've hiked neither, but have spent time looking into both. Based on the reading I have done, the PCT is by far a prettier walk, but the AT is more doable by your average person. Perhaps tbradnc can weigh in on what I have seem to have found: ⋅ Due to the population density on the East coa...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?
Replies: 49
Views: 4333

Re: I hiked the trail back in 1977

Marmot wrote:If you have the time and energy do it. I do agree that maybe the PCT would be a better experience. 10k, I own a place in Bend:)


Ah, I hitched into Sisters from Santium Pass!
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?
Replies: 49
Views: 4333

Re: Why donate to charity?

I feel like a dunce for asking the question but I'm glad I did - it makes sense now.

Thanks for helping me understand.
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:08 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Why donate to charity?

Short answer. You don't donate to save money (because you won't). You donate to give money. This from an above post explained it: Scenario 1: You do not donate to any charity. You: + $0.67 IRS: + $0.33 Charity: $0 Scenario 2: You donate the buck to charity. You: +$0.33 IRS: -$0.33 Charity: +$1.00 I...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:01 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Why donate to charity?

I don't understand your math. Relative to the scenario where you don't donate anything, these are the amounts everyone ends up with: You: -$0.67 IRS: -$0.33 Charity: +$1.00 I agree. OP: Just to clarify - here are the two scenarios for your marginal dollar earned at 33% tax rate. Here is how that ma...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 10:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Why donate to charity?

Gotcha, thanks. To personalize it a bit.. we're going to be in the 10% bracket this year but owe. So, say we're going to owe $1000. I can donate $10,000 and owe $0 in tax. Or I can just pay the $1000 tax and have $9000 more dollars in my pocket. I guess this is why charitable giving strategies aren'...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 10:27 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Why donate to charity?

Oh, don't misunderstand me - I contribute to several charities and also volunteer. My question was purely financial. I was/am wondering if donating to charity actually saves you money or just keeps the exact amount you donated from the IRS - leaving the donor with the same amount of money in both ca...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 10:16 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Why donate to charity?

I have a question ..... From a strictly monetary standpoint how does donating to charity save money at tax time? Say I"m in the 33% tax bracket. If I donate a dollar, I save $0.33 on my taxes and a charity gets the $0.33. If I keep my dollar the IRS gets the $0.33. In both scenarios I am left w...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 10:07 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?

So, if you had to do just one, which would it be the AT or PCT? I too am thinking of this, and I am leaning towards the PCT, as it seems much more scenic and less crowded. Having hiked both I would recommend the PCT over the AT if I absolutely had to pick one. The views are just mind-numbingly beau...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 31, 2014 9:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?
Replies: 49
Views: 4333

Re: Giving a stock as a gift

msi wrote:Alternatively, give her one share of VTI and a poster of Jack Bogle. Nothing makes a two year old happier.


This is the funniest thing I'll read on the internet today I'm sure!
by tbradnc
Tue Dec 30, 2014 1:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Giving a stock as a gift
Replies: 17
Views: 1302

Re: What would you have done differently when retiring?

I sold my business in September 2013 and retired at 52. Whether or not we have enough money to stay retired for the next 40 years is 50/50 (almost literally, according to Firecalc) but we're willing to risk it. I figure you can always figure out a way to make some more money. More time, not so much....
by tbradnc
Mon Dec 29, 2014 8:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What would you have done differently when retiring?
Replies: 107
Views: 10672

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

We watched Nightcrawler tonight. It was well acted and had a pretty good creep factor.

If you like dark and creepy you'd enjoy this one.
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 28, 2014 9:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 476
Views: 55810

Re: Parent liability for young adult child

If he sells them fast enough he doesn't need to title them, but yes, he can run into an issue of not having a resellers license of some sort. If he buys a car at he auction, how does he get it home, allow test drives and check out any repairs he makes, etc? Bonafide dealers usually have "deale...
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 28, 2014 3:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Parent liability for young adult child
Replies: 31
Views: 3030

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Chan_va wrote:Watched 'The Gambler'. May have been the worst movie I have ever watched. I would try and summarize it for you but the trauma of recalling the experience would be too great.


While you're trying to recover watch Dumb and Dumber To... It is SO bad.....
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 28, 2014 2:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 476
Views: 55810

Re: Home Thermostat Wiring

I registered at HVAC-talk; unfortunately, not being a professional member there, I was told they couldn't offer do it yourself info there. I posted on Garden Web, as well. Also, thanks for the table link, Epsilon! Interesting - I registered and posted several questions and received answers in this ...
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 28, 2014 1:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Thermostat Wiring
Replies: 11
Views: 1257

Re: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?

I think it's great! I've hiked the entire Appalachian Trail and this summer I thru hiked the Pacific Crest Trail. And many other trails from 500-100 miles in length. Long distance hiking is my passion. Next year I'm hiking the Continental Divide Trail - that'll give me a "Triple Crown". PM...
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 28, 2014 1:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?
Replies: 49
Views: 4333

Re: Do you usually order beverage at restaurants?

9 times out of 10 I get water. I used to get a slice of lemon until I read in a few places that the lemons were seldom washed so now I just get water straight up. My wife gets 1/2 sweetened tea and 1/2 unsweetened. I am a dessert person - if I have a nice meal I'll finish with a dessert for sure.
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 28, 2014 9:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you usually order (not-free) beverage at restaurants?
Replies: 89
Views: 7636

Re: Home Thermostat Wiring

A year or so ago I tried a Nest and then switched to an Ecobee. I found this forum very helpful:

http://hvac-talk.com/vbb/
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 28, 2014 9:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Thermostat Wiring
Replies: 11
Views: 1257

Re: Electronic gizmos and apps you actually use a lot

iPhone 5s, Apple TV, and my Macbook are 98% of my electronic gizmoness.

The other 2% is for my Kindle. I'm still having a hard time adjusting to an ereader from paper.
by tbradnc
Sat Dec 27, 2014 5:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electronic gizmos and apps you actually use a lot
Replies: 14
Views: 1745
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