Search found 2162 matches

by texasdiver
Mon May 29, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring in southern college town
Replies: 78
Views: 4898

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: 618

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: 4898

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: 618

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: 37
Views: 4229

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: 3154

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: 3154

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: 2227

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: 2227

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: 3019

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: 3019

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: 3019

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: 974

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: 2227

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: 1443

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: 1236

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: 213
Views: 17964

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: 1050

Re: Late October Western Travel Ideas?

Perhaps Taos NM? Or is that too far away?
by texasdiver
Sat May 06, 2017 10:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HOA & renting rules
Replies: 27
Views: 2317

Re: HOA & renting rules

Our house also fits this description and we have a HOA that restricts short term rentals. Like the others, all we are missing is an oven to make our basement into a full size 2 bedroom apartment. Seems like this situation would invite a clash between two competing sets of laws and regulations: One t...
by texasdiver
Tue May 02, 2017 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time to upgrade bed/bath linens
Replies: 23
Views: 1994

Re: Time to upgrade bed/bath linens

Costco for both sheets and towels
by texasdiver
Thu Apr 27, 2017 10:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Summer vacation, Lake Ouachita, Hot Springs, AR
Replies: 12
Views: 983

Re: Summer vacation, Lake Ouachita, Hot Springs, AR

Thanks for all your replies. After some online searches, I see a couple of nice looking condos by Lake Hamilton. We probably will end up renting there. We are complete novice when comes to water sports/sailing. I have no boating experience. But renting a pontoon boat actually look like a lot of fun...
by texasdiver
Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone know what this auto repair tool is?
Replies: 5
Views: 902

Re: Anyone know what this auto repair tool is?

The car is a 2 year old Highlander. It has been in the shop 8 times Why haven't we heard from you on all the Toyota reliability threads? :D Only thing gone wrong was a disk rotor that got warped and I had it turned. Otherwise it's just been regular scheduled dealer service, getting snow tires on an...
by texasdiver
Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: car portable refrigerator
Replies: 12
Views: 898

Re: car portable refrigerator

They are not worth it and most are probably much too small to carry a bulk meat order. They will keep your drinks and sandwiches somewhat colder than room temp but that is about it. You cannot draw enough current off your 12 volt cigarette lighter outlet to power a cooler that will keep a large amou...
by texasdiver
Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone know what this auto repair tool is?
Replies: 5
Views: 902

Re: Anyone know what this auto repair tool is?

Thanks. That solves the mystery!
by texasdiver
Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Summer vacation, Lake Ouachita, Hot Springs, AR
Replies: 12
Views: 983

Re: Summer vacation, Lake Ouachita, Hot Springs, AR

During the decade we lived in Texas we did Arkansas lake vacations several times. Twice with our camping trailer and twice with VRBO lake houses. It will be hot and probably humid in July but you are coming from TX so will probably be 5-10 degrees cooler than home. Basically you have to drive 500+ m...
by texasdiver
Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone know what this auto repair tool is?
Replies: 5
Views: 902

Anyone know what this auto repair tool is?

My wife just found this tool wedged between the passenger seat and center console of her car. No idea how long it has been there. I have no idea how it got there. My guess is that perhaps a repair shop left it there. The car is a 2 year old Highlander. It has been in the shop 8 times 3x to the deale...
by texasdiver
Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best surface for garage, epoxy, polished concrete, something else?
Replies: 24
Views: 2747

Re: Best surface for garage, epoxy, polished concrete, something else?

I saw this stuff online and am thinking of giving it a try in my new garage instead of going through all the trouble of prepping the concrete and putting down epoxy. Anyone used these types of vinyl sheets? http://www.homedepot.com/p/G-Floor-10-ft-x-24-ft-Coin-Commercial-Grade-Slate-Grey-Garage-Floo...
by texasdiver
Sun Apr 23, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Six pack for barbecue?
Replies: 77
Views: 5360

Re: Six pack for barbecue?

Grab a cooler with ice. 1. Toss in a 6-pack of bottled water (not everyone drinks) 2. Toss in a 6-pack of some domestic beer like Bud Light. Some people don't like heavier beers. My wife only drinks light pilsners like Bud or Corona. 3. Toss in a 6-pack of some higher end beer, preferably some local...
by texasdiver
Sat Apr 22, 2017 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hotel Living
Replies: 20
Views: 3311

Re: Hotel Living

Washington is absolutely full of short term rental options. There is a whole industry that does short term furnished apartments for people traveling in and out of DC on short term assignments. I made use of them several times when I worked for a Federal agency. Actually they are mostly just normal a...
by texasdiver
Fri Apr 21, 2017 7:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: You can never go "home" - retirement
Replies: 85
Views: 12516

Re: You can never go "home" - retirement

Left my home town in Oregon, a medium sized timber and college town at age 18. This was the early 80s and many of my friends also left home due to the dire economy at the time. In the subsequent decades all my extended family has drifted away as well. Of the people I still have contact with or hear ...
by texasdiver
Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best surface for garage, epoxy, polished concrete, something else?
Replies: 24
Views: 2747

Re: Best surface for garage, epoxy, polished concrete, something else?

Had our garage professionally epoxied two years ago. We've really enjoyed it. It's medium grey, with cream, black and grey chips. Kinda like grey granite. It blows those epoxy and chip kit things from HD out of the water. Our installer didn't use acid to etch, but rather ground the floor mechanical...
by texasdiver
Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best surface for garage, epoxy, polished concrete, something else?
Replies: 24
Views: 2747

Re: Best surface for garage, epoxy, polished concrete, something else?

I painted my last garage floor with the Rustoleum garage floor paint and was pretty satisfied but it is a tremendous amount of work to prep the concrete. If yours is coming up it may not have been properly prepped. You may have to hire a company to sandplast it or strip it and start over. I'm thinki...
by texasdiver
Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost Creep and Teen and College Years?
Replies: 52
Views: 3670

Re: Cost Creep and Teen and College Years?

If kids do get into competitive club sports, you're looking at >2k/yr. Yes, that amount and likely a lot more. Even if your child is just on a sports team (not at an elite level), you could spend a lot of money on lessons, on equipment, on summer camps, on clothes. My children did tennis (boy) and ...
by texasdiver
Thu Apr 13, 2017 11:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost Creep and Teen and College Years?
Replies: 52
Views: 3670

Re: Cost Creep and Teen and College Years?

Been through and still going through this. Daughter #1 who is now a freshman in college: Sorority fees: About $2400 per year. This actually may have been money well spent. Our daughter has always been a somewhat average or marginal student. Her first semester of college was somewhat of a repeat of h...
by texasdiver
Wed Apr 12, 2017 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: leaving early from work
Replies: 57
Views: 7384

Re: leaving early from work

For the past 2 years my daughter for her senior year of HS and now her freshman year of college has worked as an afternoon driver/nanny for two different families. She picks the kids up from school in her car and drives them home where she babysits until the parents get home, usually around 5-6 pm. ...
by texasdiver
Sun Apr 02, 2017 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to buy new iPhone
Replies: 32
Views: 2642

Re: Where to buy new iPhone

They are generally the same price everywhere. But if you buy through a provider you are likely to get a phone locked to that provider making it difficult to switch to a different company. They will unlock your phones but it can be a hassle. I think if you get a phone at Sams Club or Costco you are a...
by texasdiver
Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: An Edward Jones Financial Advisor stopped by my house and spoke with my wife
Replies: 111
Views: 11965

Re: An Edward Jones Financial Advisor stopped by my house and spoke with my wife

I used to have the Edwards Jones guys come by in our suburb in TX. I would just tell them that I'm currently paying 3.8 basis points to invest in index funds through the TSP. If they can beat that I'm all ears. If not then they are wasting my time and theirs. I make it real simple for them. You want...
by texasdiver
Fri Mar 31, 2017 11:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: August Vacation With Kids
Replies: 31
Views: 2394

Re: August Vacation With Kids

YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park Colorado: https://ymcarockies.org It is basically like going to summer camp with your kids. My wife and I took our kids there a few years ago when they were younger for a medical conference and I basically spent the week hanging out with the kids. It is a low key al...
by texasdiver
Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Versatile economical RV recommendations for a frugal retiree?
Replies: 59
Views: 4235

Re: Versatile economical RV recommendations for a frugal retiree?

Not as small as the Escape 21 but the Oliver Legacy Elite II is a nice smaller tandem axle trailer and at 4600 lbs dry weight easily within the range of your truck. It's pretty much the Cadillac of fiberglass trailers so not cheap as the Escape but still way less than an Airstream. https://olivertra...
by texasdiver
Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A SUV for towing a Travel Trailer
Replies: 71
Views: 5245

Re: A SUV for towing a Travel Trailer

Thanks every one for your valuable input, I have decided to tow my Escape 17B back to Florida by our Lexus RX 350. I will see how it tows & will upgrade if needed. Thanks again Consider finding some steep grades en route as a test. The Lexus RX350 is about 300 HP. It will tow a 2000 lb Escape T...
by texasdiver
Sun Mar 26, 2017 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does living at the beach reduce it's appeal?
Replies: 43
Views: 6252

Re: Does living at the beach reduce it's appeal?

I've lived in a couple of beach towns over the years. I don't get tired of the beach. What I do get tired of is living in a tourist town. The endless stream of clueless short-term visitors who seem to think it is a theme park for their enjoyment and not an actual community where people live. Somethi...
by texasdiver
Fri Mar 24, 2017 12:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A SUV for towing a Travel Trailer
Replies: 71
Views: 5245

Re: A SUV for towing a Travel Trailer

Some real world experience here. I have a 3800 lb Fleetwood Arcadia popup (one of the largest high-sided popup trailers). I towed it all over Texas and the surrounding states for a couple years using a 2004 Sienna with a Reese weight distributing hitch. Towed just fine and would cruise all day on th...
by texasdiver
Mon Mar 13, 2017 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: gratuitous homeownership items
Replies: 218
Views: 18934

Re: gratuitous homeownership items

Our master bath has three walk-in closets, and every bathroom (3) has two types of fan: the fan to get the "smell" out, and the heater fan type thing. As you can tell by my username, we're in Texas. The heater far type thing is COMPLETELY gratuitous, but my wife does love it. (We did, how...
by texasdiver
Sun Mar 12, 2017 11:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: gratuitous homeownership items
Replies: 218
Views: 18934

Re: gratuitous homeownership items

Whirlpool tub. Last 3 houses I have owned have had them. Last two times I went to sell the house I had to deal with major hassle getting them repaired because they weren't working and we never noticed for years. Alarm System. Last two houses have had them. Never activated them. Although when the kid...
by texasdiver
Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on relocation or staying put
Replies: 83
Views: 5820

Re: Advice on relocation or staying put

This thread may be a little old but I just noticed it. My wife and I just did the exact same thing you are contemplating. Here are my comments and thoughts. Last summer we moved from the Waco TX area to Vancouver WA (Portland suburb). We are slightly older than you but not much. My wife is in health...
by texasdiver
Sat Mar 11, 2017 10:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's in Your Lock Box (Essential Documents)
Replies: 6
Views: 884

Re: What's in Your Lock Box (Essential Documents)

Passports Birth certificates Car titles House deed SS cards Insurance papers Shot records (for kids) Shot records and microchip records for pets I'm sure there's more but that is all I can think of at the moment without peeking. All tucked away into a single accordion file for quick bug-out. Back wh...
by texasdiver
Mon Mar 06, 2017 1:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coffee Home Roaster -> Where to get the green bean?
Replies: 21
Views: 1205

Re: Coffee Home Roaster -> Where to get the green bean?

Sweet Marias is my favorite. They are good people. I've tried about every way of home roasting. Did the air popper thing (found the correct type of air popper for $15 at Walgreens). You are right, the air has to come from the sides or it will catch fire. Used a rotisserie attachment on my Weber Gril...
by texasdiver
Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chromebook video quality question
Replies: 13
Views: 739

Re: Chromebook video quality question

Not exactly responsive to your question but there is one big limitation on using chromebooks for video. They are unable to play DVDs. I was going to get a chromebook for my mother-in-law who wanted a cheap travel laptop that she could use for web surfing and email and to play her DVD collection. It ...
by texasdiver
Sun Feb 26, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Caribbean vacation with 3 kids
Replies: 27
Views: 2252

Re: Caribbean vacation with 3 kids

With 3 kids I'd skip the Caribbean and go to Costa Rica. Costa Rica does have a Caribbean coast but the better resorts are on the Pacific side. We've done Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic and my wife used to work on cruise ships in the Caribbean. We much prefer Costa Rica, especially with kids a...
by texasdiver
Thu Jan 12, 2017 10:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Early Retirement in Mexico, Healthcare
Replies: 26
Views: 4635

Re: Early Retirement in Mexico, Healthcare

I work in operating rooms and closely with surgeons in all of Latin America. I have seen everything from the government run public hospitals to the facilities where the uber wealthy get healthcare. From a surgery standpoint, the majority of procedures I would get done here without hesitation (here ...

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