Search found 2194 matches

by texasdiver
Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Physicals and Forms for Kids Activities
Replies: 12
Views: 703

Re: Physicals and Forms for Kids Activities

I've got 3 girls ages 11, 14, and 19 We've done a bazillion camps and sports activities and have NEVER faced having to complete this sort of non-standard physical form. It seems rather excessive to me. Our last school system in Texas actually had a "physical day" in August where they would...
by texasdiver
Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard 403b Changes
Replies: 106
Views: 5989

Re: Vanguard 403b Changes

My wife got the letter yesterday. Mine arrived today. We both have Vanguard 403(b) plans through previous employers that we have just been letting ride until now out of inertia. After this I'll be rolling mine into my TSP account which I should have done last year when I changed jobs. My wife will b...
by texasdiver
Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone retire and move to a planned community in FL?
Replies: 48
Views: 6249

Re: anyone retire and move to a planned community in FL?

Close family friends retired and moved to Sanibel Island a few years back. Parents of one of my best friends actually. After two years they were back home to Montana. Poor advance research on their part I think. They never adapted to the omnipresent HOA (couldn't park a pickup in the driveway for ex...
by texasdiver
Tue Jun 27, 2017 11:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Slide rule anyone?
Replies: 88
Views: 7667

Re: Slide rule anyone?

This spring I was cleaning out the science dept stockroom at the school I teach at at and found a giant slide rule about 6' long and 1' wide. I assume it is a teaching tool used to demonstrate slide rule usage from the front of the class during lectures. Pretty cool. We mounted it on the wall. No on...
by texasdiver
Tue Jun 27, 2017 7:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Kaiser Permanente 401(k) fee question
Replies: 8
Views: 691

Re: Kaiser Permanente 401(k) fee question

PFInterest wrote:You might want to mention which Kaiser. This is not SoCal.


Northwest Permanente (Oregon and Washington)
by texasdiver
Tue Jun 27, 2017 4:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Kaiser Permanente 401(k) fee question
Replies: 8
Views: 691

Re: Kaiser Permanente 401(k) fee question

Just a follow-up. We finally managed to obtain all the plan documents online after enrolling her in the 401k plan. Turns out there are no management or administrative fees other than the underlying fund fees. Even though it is managed by Fidelity there are a range of other fund options including Van...
by texasdiver
Wed Jun 21, 2017 9:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Kaiser Permanente 401(k) fee question
Replies: 8
Views: 691

Kaiser Permanente 401(k) fee question

Just curious if anyone here is in the Kaiser 401(k) plan with Fidelity. And can explain the fee structure. My wife is reaching her 1-year anniversary and will soon be eligible to join the 401(k) plan. She got a big package of 401(k) plan material in the mail which we have sorted through and read. Ca...
by texasdiver
Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: For Sale By Owner HOUSE- Advice Please
Replies: 26
Views: 3074

Re: For Sale By Owner HOUSE- Advice Please

My experience having bought and sold 4 houses over the past decade is that the title companies do 90% of the transactional work, not the real estate agents. This was in Alaska, Texas, and Washington. We used an agent to sell our last house because we had a very narrow window of time to get it sold a...
by texasdiver
Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Olympic NP and Mt Rainier NP
Replies: 20
Views: 1752

Re: Olympic NP and Mt Rainier NP

Honestly, with kids that small I'd do the North Cascades loop on Highway 20 and Highway 2 and skip Mt. Rainier. Rent a cabin in Winthrop or perhaps Leavenworth. It's more of a scenic drive but there are all kinds of places to stop and do short hikes in the North Cascades National Park and there will...
by texasdiver
Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: 401K Match
Replies: 99
Views: 16561

Re: Poll: 401K Match

Teacher here: When I moved to this state last year and started a new position I had to elect between: Plan 2: Traditional Pension plus optional 403(b) with no match Plan 3: Reduced pension with 403(b)-ish program that contains relatively generous match Did the math and concluded that for someone sta...
by texasdiver
Thu Jun 15, 2017 11:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?
Replies: 127
Views: 13305

Re: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?

Back when my portfolio was 20% of its current value I was an incredibly active investor. I subscribed to Morningstar and read all the financial rags in the library and online. Was constantly checking my portfolio of 10-20 randomly assembled active funds and following the market with laser intensity...
by texasdiver
Thu Jun 15, 2017 11:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?
Replies: 127
Views: 13305

Re: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?

Can't wait to get to this point! It sounds relaxing. I do like the thought of a discretionary account though. Rather than a discretionary stock fund, I do think about things like messing with real estate rentals, house flips, doing AIRBnB rentals, or something like that. But i start to look into wh...
by texasdiver
Thu Jun 15, 2017 11:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?
Replies: 127
Views: 13305

Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?

Back when my portfolio was 20% of its current value I was an incredibly active investor. I subscribed to Morningstar and read all the financial rags in the library and online. Was constantly checking my portfolio of 10-20 randomly assembled active funds and following the market with laser intensity....
by texasdiver
Thu Jun 15, 2017 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Increasing iPad storage capacity
Replies: 14
Views: 1192

Re: Increasing iPad storage capacity

No way to upgrade the storage on the iPad. Best bet is to move as much stuff as you can to cloud storage like iCloud, DropBox or Google Drive which both have iPad apps. You can put all your photos and videos there and delete a bunch from the iPad. Also get rid of any apps you don't need. I think you...
by texasdiver
Thu Jun 15, 2017 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cooktop died, not repairable, need recommendations
Replies: 36
Views: 1958

Re: Cooktop died, not repairable, need recommendations

I cannot live with an electric range. I have a single burner outside the house connected to a propane tank and a stove capable of 40,000 BTUs or something. When on full blast, it sounds like a dragon breathing fire. Quickly boils water or cooks veggies. We have gas heat Our winter heating bills are...
by texasdiver
Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Highlander vs. Pilot
Replies: 30
Views: 3155

Re: Highlander vs. Pilot

Note: If you are getting it to haul kids. We test drove a couple versions of the highlander with our kids. The limited version we bought has middle row bucket seats with a space between them for kids to scramble through to the third row. This makes it a 7 passenger vehicle. There were lower trim ver...
by texasdiver
Tue Jun 13, 2017 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Highlander vs. Pilot
Replies: 30
Views: 3155

Re: Highlander vs. Pilot

We have a 2014 Highlander Limited. It has turned out to be a fabulous car so far (about 40,000 miles). The only mechanical issues have been that the entertainment system was a bit glitchy when bluetooth streaming off the phone so we had to pay Toyota to get it flashed with a newer software version. ...
by texasdiver
Mon Jun 12, 2017 4:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?
Replies: 23
Views: 1905

Re: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?

I priced it out on United.com for about $1990. The key here is that the best fare is available only through 2:30 pm on 12/14 out of XNA, else it jumps by a few hundred bucks! Doesn't surprise me. 12/14 is the last day of final exams at Univ. of Arkansas. So the flood of college students leaving Fay...
by texasdiver
Mon Jun 12, 2017 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?
Replies: 23
Views: 1905

Re: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?

Dec 28 - Jan 11: Round trip flight Portland to Santiago on AA returning from Santiago to Fayetteville on Jan 11 for about $1600. Both outbound and return segments route through DFW. Basically they are only charging us about $100 extra to add the PDX-DFW segment on the outbound flight and the DFW-XN...
by texasdiver
Sun Jun 11, 2017 7:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?
Replies: 23
Views: 1905

Re: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?

If you are open to Delta, here is a single itinerary for $2031. There were quite a few flight options for this price. THU 14 DEC XNA 12:31 PM to PDX 6:58 PM Flight Number DL 564, Flight Number DL 887 TRAVEL TIME 8h 27m 1 STOP THU 28 DEC PDX 1:05 PM to SCL 09:55 AM ARRIVES NEXT DAY Flight Number DL ...
by texasdiver
Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?
Replies: 23
Views: 1905

Re: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?

I'm sure there are other better forums for this question, but I know there are a lot of frequent international flyers here. I'm a pretty veteran flyer and have probably booked over 100 flights online over the past decade. But this has me stymied. I would post this question on the AA FlyerTalk forum...
by texasdiver
Sun Jun 11, 2017 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College admissions question - she got a "C"
Replies: 100
Views: 8251

Re: College admissions question - she got a "C"

Word of advice from another HS teacher and parent here. You need to find a school where your child will be comfortable and can actually succeed. It was clear to us from elementary school onwards that our oldest was a very median child in terms of academics. We could push her into A/B grades in ordin...
by texasdiver
Sun Jun 11, 2017 2:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?
Replies: 23
Views: 1905

Re: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?

Did some more research and it turns out that an open-jaw round trip flight doesn't really cost any more than a regular round trip flight. The cost only skyrockets when you add a 3rd destination. So the way to do something like this with 3 destinations is to buy an open jaw round trip flight one one ...
by texasdiver
Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?
Replies: 23
Views: 1905

Re: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?

Well, I did do some digging and it seems that AA does have a policy of re-accommodating passengers due to travel disruptions by treating separate tickets as through itineraries. But this policy only applies if the separate tickets are on AA or one-world alliance member airlines. This airline policy ...
by texasdiver
Sat Jun 10, 2017 9:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?
Replies: 23
Views: 1905

Best way to book multi-city international airfare itinerary?

I'm sure there are other better forums for this question, but I know there are a lot of frequent international flyers here. I'm a pretty veteran flyer and have probably booked over 100 flights online over the past decade. But this has me stymied. Looking for advice on booking the following Christmas...
by texasdiver
Sat Jun 10, 2017 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AAA Cost
Replies: 85
Views: 6576

Re: AAA Cost

If you have auto insurance through Costco (Ameriprise) you have free roadside assistance but it is limited to $75 which isn't much. https://www.ameriprise.com/auto-home-insurance/learning-center/insurance-tips-for-drivers/auto-insurance-coverage-made-simple/roadside-assistance.asp In 10 years with A...
by texasdiver
Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AAA Cost
Replies: 85
Views: 6576

Re: AAA Cost

Changing your own tires is not permitted on many roads, and not practical on many others. Huh? I've never travelled on a road in which changing your own flat tire is prohibited. Can you list some of these roads? What are you supposed to do if you get a flat? Are you required to call a tow truck dri...
by texasdiver
Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College admissions question - she got a "C"
Replies: 100
Views: 8251

Re: College admissions question - she got a "C"

Just went through this with my daughter who had a similar GPA to your daughter (mostly As and Bs). Big schools are going to do almost all of their admissions using a formula based on GPA, Class Rank, and SAT/ACT scores. No single class grade is actually going to be looked at individually. My daughte...
by texasdiver
Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drones?
Replies: 12
Views: 1378

Re: Drones?

So something like this $100 drone is not worth getting? https://www.amazon.com/Holy-Stone-F181-Quadcopter-Headless/dp/B00SAUAP5C/ I figure she needs something cheap and simple to learn on and if it is something she really gets into then we can get a more pro model later. I'm afraid if I buy her a $7...
by texasdiver
Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drones?
Replies: 12
Views: 1378

Drones?

My 19 year old daughter is a budding professional photographer and wants a drone for her birthday. Basically she has started to earn money on the side by shooting weddings and social events of her friends and she's apparently become the unofficial photographer of her sorority. Both video and still p...
by texasdiver
Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Beginner needs help choosing which compact camera to buy!
Replies: 16
Views: 827

Re: Beginner needs help choosing which compact camera to buy!

We own 3 nice digital cameras but have found that for shooting kids we pretty much only use the iPhones anymore. The camera in your pocket is the one you will use and iPhones have gotten pretty good. If you are not a serious photographer then there are two reasons to get a nicer camera in my mind: 1...
by texasdiver
Tue May 30, 2017 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying parents home--how to navigate
Replies: 12
Views: 1533

Re: Buying parents home--how to navigate

If the parents are in their 60s that probably puts you in your 40s or even 30s? Biggest problem I see is what happens if your life circumstances change? What if you need to relocate for your career or your wife's career or your own family circumstances change in a way that suggests a move? How do yo...
by texasdiver
Mon May 29, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring in southern college town
Replies: 78
Views: 5822

Re: Retiring in southern college town

Two years ago I made a long summer college visit road trip throughout the south with my daughter. We were living in TX at the time and she was interested in southern universities that were somewhat close to TX but not in TX (we did all the TX schools on day trips). We hit I think 15 different school...
by texasdiver
Sun May 28, 2017 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best watch for climbing/mountaineering?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Re: best watch for climbing/mountaineering?

I use a Smart Phone, specifically Samsung Galaxy S5. I use Google maps to download into the "offline area" before I go. That way, everything works without need of phone or wireless connection. Plus it's a camera, flashlight, and plays music. Oh, it tells time, too along with being water r...
by texasdiver
Sun May 28, 2017 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring in southern college town
Replies: 78
Views: 5822

Re: Retiring in southern college town

I have an aunt and uncle who retired to Tallahassee from the upper midwest. They love it but they don't exactly live the examined life. They mostly just putter around in their garden growing flowers, attend the local Lutheran church, and take the occasional fishing trip down to the gulf coast. Talla...
by texasdiver
Sun May 28, 2017 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best watch for climbing/mountaineering?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Re: best watch for climbing/mountaineering?

Something cheap. You'll bash the heck out of it if you are actually rock climbing. And if you are mountaineering you'll likely not look at it under your parka and gloves. When I'm out in the mountains I just keep an actual handheld Garmin tucked in my pack.
by texasdiver
Wed May 24, 2017 5:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone ever live/living on a boat?
Replies: 46
Views: 5778

Re: anyone ever live/living on a boat?

Those big twin diesel motoryachts are going to be tremendously expensive to operate and maintain. Especially if fuel prices go back up. I have not owned anything nearly that big but over the years I have owned 4 boats from 17' up to 30' and my brother has been living aboard a wooden motor yacht in A...
by texasdiver
Fri May 19, 2017 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rice Cooker
Replies: 41
Views: 3498

Re: Rice Cooker

I've never used a rice cooker and am just wondering what is the difference versus making rice in a pot on the stovetop? I take one cup of rice and two cups of water, bring to boil, cover and cook for 20 minutes. Don't stir or open the lid. It's easy and comes out perfectly and everyone loves it. Is...
by texasdiver
Thu May 18, 2017 11:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rice Cooker
Replies: 41
Views: 3498

Re: Rice Cooker

We've been using the Zojirushi rice cooker for about 10 years and it gets more use than any other appliance. Always perfect rice. Pro-tip. Get a good rice cooker cookbook and branch out with more recipes than just white and brown rice. We have this one which is good but there are many others: https:...
by texasdiver
Thu May 18, 2017 11:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Few days in Portland in July
Replies: 36
Views: 2531

Re: Few days in Portland in July

Columbia Gorge is wonderful. (I tell people it got it's name because it is Gorge-ous.) If you're willing to spend much of your Sunday in your car -- rather than communing with nature -- doing the circle east through the Gorge and then up around Mount Hood to Timberline and then back down the mounta...
by texasdiver
Mon May 15, 2017 11:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Few days in Portland in July
Replies: 36
Views: 2531

Re: Few days in Portland in July

OP gave enough info to figure out which Portland, but you'd have to do some Googling about that valley. Portland,ME also has a Marriott on the waterfront. :) It is fairly easy to add the state abbrev so am pointing out there are two fairly well known Portlands. I've been to the eastern one several ...
by texasdiver
Mon May 15, 2017 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco Kirkland Signature Cookware vs Calphalon?
Replies: 29
Views: 3924

Re: Costco Kirkland Signature Cookware vs Calphalon?

Think I'm going to get the Costco Kirkland Signature stainless set and see how I like it. I can get the whole 13 piece set for the price of one All-Clad pot. I mostly need all new saucepans and stock pots because the kids have used metal spoons on the old ones and scratched them all up. I can always...
by texasdiver
Sun May 14, 2017 3:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco Kirkland Signature Cookware vs Calphalon?
Replies: 29
Views: 3924

Re: Costco Kirkland Signature Cookware vs Calphalon?

Do you have to get an aluminum based & non stick cookware? As a person who cooks 3-4 times a week; and hosts a large party (10+) every 2 months I strongly recommend quality stainless steel cookware. Yes, they cost most money but I guarantee you won't be disappointed. Have an AllcLad set which I...
by texasdiver
Sun May 14, 2017 12:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco Kirkland Signature Cookware vs Calphalon?
Replies: 29
Views: 3924

Costco Kirkland Signature Cookware vs Calphalon?

After 15 years of daily use our set of Costco Kirkland Signature non-stick cookware is battered enough to warrant replacement. Costco always seems to have good quality sets of non-stick cookware but the sets seem to have evolved as I suspect Costco has switched suppliers or manufacturers several tim...
by texasdiver
Sun May 14, 2017 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Rental in Mexico
Replies: 9
Views: 1077

Re: Car Rental in Mexico

Thanks again for the additional replies. Very interesting. Watty, you raise an interesting issue with Taxis. A bit more info. about our trip: This is a 50th anniversary family celebration. Six people will be arriving together and go from Cancun to Playa del Carmen for one night and then on to a hou...
by texasdiver
Sun May 14, 2017 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Few days in Portland in July
Replies: 36
Views: 2531

Re: Few days in Portland in July

Portlander here despite the handle. Portland has an extensive bike share network and a great on-street and off-street bike trail and bike lane network for biking and walking. Here are route maps you can download to your phone. https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/39402 If you like biking yo...
by texasdiver
Sat May 13, 2017 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Out of town neighbor received FTD del.What to do.
Replies: 13
Views: 1577

Re: Out of town neighbor received FTD del.What to do.

You are going above and beyond. When we get home after a long out of town trip I'm always just happy to see the house is still there and not a smoking crater in the yard. That we haven't been robbed or that the house hasn't slid into the ravine behind. Besides, who asks someone to watch their house ...
by texasdiver
Mon May 08, 2017 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Seattle and Vancouver with kids
Replies: 19
Views: 1358

Re: Seattle and Vancouver with kids

Some good suggestions here but some of the museums are probably not going to be too engaging for kids that young. The aquarium, Pike Place Market, ferris wheel, waterfront boat tour, the Ballard Locks, and the Seattle Science Center are all good suggestions. Although the science center is somewhat d...
by texasdiver
Sat May 06, 2017 11:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to Live on $60K or Less a Year?
Replies: 248
Views: 27266

Re: Where to Live on $60K or Less a Year?

Daughter is a student in Fayetteville AR and we have family in Bentonville. Area is surprisingly nice and meets pretty much all your criteria, especially those related to cost and recreation. No big mountain ranges nearby but the Ozarks are full of parks and Arkansas has has about the nicest state p...
by texasdiver
Sat May 06, 2017 11:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Late October Western Travel Ideas?
Replies: 10
Views: 1156

Re: Late October Western Travel Ideas?

Perhaps Taos NM? Or is that too far away?

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