Search found 2136 matches

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: 2500

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: 4891

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: 3070

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: 12026

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: 2500

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: 2500

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: 3464

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: 3464

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: 7223

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: 2505

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: 11550

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: 2305

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: 3999

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: 4619

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: 6067

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: 4619

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: 18455

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: 18455

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: 5624

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: 845

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: 1162

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: 668

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: 2192

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: 4558

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 ...
by texasdiver
Thu Jan 12, 2017 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Early Retirement in Mexico, Healthcare
Replies: 26
Views: 4558

Re: Early Retirement in Mexico, Healthcare

Most healthcare is pretty simple and basic. Labs for diagnosis, medications for treatment, getting your butt chewed for not eating right or exercising enough. You can get that anywhere if you have money to pay. The really complicated high tech stuff from the super specialists you find at places like...
by texasdiver
Wed Jan 11, 2017 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of getting tires from Costco
Replies: 68
Views: 7259

Re: Thinking of getting tires from Costco

Long time Costco member and I've bought perhaps 8 sets of tires there. My opinion? Not worth the hassle if you live a distance from Costco and have Discount Tire nearby. Stop into Costco during the coupon month for Michelin and price the tires you want, get the "out the door price" printou...
by texasdiver
Tue Jan 10, 2017 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I want to go to Alaska this summer - tell me what, why and when!
Replies: 18
Views: 1756

Re: I want to go to Alaska this summer - tell me what, why and when!

I am a lifelong Alaskan who does a fair amount of travel. Alaska is an expensive place to visit in the summer during the tourist season. Rental cars jump to $100/day. RVs cost $300/day. Basic 3 star hotels cost $250/night. I actually think for the value that a cruise is a good deal. Look at vacatio...
by texasdiver
Tue Jan 10, 2017 8:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I want to go to Alaska this summer - tell me what, why and when!
Replies: 18
Views: 1756

Re: I want to go to Alaska this summer - tell me what, why and when!

I spent 15 years living and working all over Alaska but mostly in Juneau, Anchorage, Kodiak, and the Bering Sea. For a week-long DIY Alaska Trip I would suggest two options: (1) Southeast Alaska, (2) South Central Alaska. You won't have time to do both. Alaska is an enormous state. Trying to see it ...
by texasdiver
Mon Jan 09, 2017 12:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HDHP health plans better deal than expected?
Replies: 10
Views: 1452

Re: HDHP health plans better deal than expected?

Can't comment on your particular experience but HDHP plans have worked out splendidly for my family. We get our current plan through my wife's employer who kicks in $1000 into our HSA annually. In addition, our HD plan premiums are zero through her employer whereas the "Cadillac" plan for ...
by texasdiver
Thu Jan 05, 2017 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure?
Replies: 57
Views: 4451

Re: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure

You would be surprised what's on a SIM. Just like you'd be surprised what hotels put on there key cards ... do not hand those back take them home and shred them! I don't want your app info I want your account info that's the real magic since its tied to your credit data. I can dupe your phone at th...
by texasdiver
Fri Dec 23, 2016 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rental Car, best options
Replies: 17
Views: 1662

Re: Rental Car, best options

If you are a Costco member try their travel web site for rental car reservations. I usually find they have the best price. Usually with National or Enterprise. I used to play games trying to find the cheapest off site airport rentals. Now I don't bother and prefer the convenience of renting inside t...
by texasdiver
Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Old House Woes
Replies: 25
Views: 2352

Re: Old House Woes

Friend of mine sunk his sweat and tears into a top to bottom rehab of a bungalow in Seattle some years back. Kitchen gutted and redone top to bottom. All restored hardwood floors, hundreds of hours stripping and refinishing original woodwork. That sort of thing. He later he sold it for a tidy profit...
by texasdiver
Mon Dec 19, 2016 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter car safety kit?
Replies: 46
Views: 2958

Re: Winter car safety kit?

Unless you guys are talking about breaking down way out in the country, I'd have to echo the "AAA card" comment. You guys are going to spend 2-3x the cost of road hazard support on all this stuff. Assuming you do most of your driving within 100 miles of a major city, I'd feel much better ...
by texasdiver
Sun Dec 18, 2016 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter car safety kit?
Replies: 46
Views: 2958

Re: Winter car safety kit?

I would add a little bit of cash. I have at time found myself with $3 dollars in my wallet because I forgot to go by the ATM. $20 in small bills could help in some situations. A list of phone numbers. If your cell phone is dead or you lose it then you might be able to use someone elses phone to mak...
by texasdiver
Sun Dec 18, 2016 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter car safety kit?
Replies: 46
Views: 2958

Re: Winter car safety kit?

Not safety related, but I always carry a piece of 2x8 so if I need to change a tire I've got a flat, non-slip surface to put the jack on. And I carry a breaker bar instead of the stock tire iron that comes with the vehicle. Provides a lot more leverage and makes breaking a stuck nut much easier. An...
by texasdiver
Sun Dec 18, 2016 12:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter car safety kit?
Replies: 46
Views: 2958

Re: Winter car safety kit?

550 cord, folding knife, high calorie bars, edible nuts (you never know how some here think :wink: ), contractor plastic bags, flashlight with spare batteries, fire-starter, compass, topographic map - don't count on a GPS if the battery stops working or sometimes leads you to a place that isn't the...
by texasdiver
Sat Dec 17, 2016 1:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter car safety kit?
Replies: 46
Views: 2958

Re: Winter car safety kit?

plastic mountaineering shovel (to dig out of snow) high capacity portable compressor You have a very nice list. One change I'd make is to swap out the plastic shovel for a metal one - the kind the GIs used to carry in WW2 is good. I would also carry a high capacity, portable compressor in each car ...
by texasdiver
Sat Dec 17, 2016 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter car safety kit?
Replies: 46
Views: 2958

Re: Winter car safety kit?

That's a great list. I hesitate to recommend a couple of things because your list is already overkill for me, but here goes: Packets of chemical hand warmers used to insert into gloves and shoes by skiers and campers. A separate fully-charged "jolt" lithium battery/flashlight combo to cha...
by texasdiver
Sat Dec 17, 2016 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Old Tools
Replies: 19
Views: 2888

Re: Old Tools

I have an old Pulaski Axe handed down from my dad who used to carry it logging and fighting forest fires in the Gifford Pinchot back in the early 1950s. Classic forestry and fire fighting axe but also handy around the garden for clearing brush. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulaski_(tool) I also hav...
by texasdiver
Sat Dec 17, 2016 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter car safety kit?
Replies: 46
Views: 2958

Winter car safety kit?

Between myself, my wife, and my college-age daughter I have three cars under my care that need good winter safety kits and I've been negligent in getting all the cars up to snuff in terms of equipment for long winter drives that we occasionally do. I've looked at the road safety kits you see at plac...
by texasdiver
Fri Dec 09, 2016 5:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vacation ideas in Europe or South America - Feb 18-25??
Replies: 9
Views: 814

Re: Vacation ideas in Europe or South America - Feb 18-25??

Feb 18 would be the equivalent of August 18 in South America so definitely peak summer weather. Buenos Aires has been mentioned. It is a massive city and well be hot then. A lot of the population escapes north to Uruguay for the beaches in the summer which are nicer than the Argentinian ones near Bu...
by texasdiver
Thu Nov 03, 2016 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's the easiest/cheapest way to get a second phone number?
Replies: 34
Views: 2497

Re: What's the easiest/cheapest way to get a second phone number?

I'd put this back in the patient's court. No one should expect to see their doctor's personal phone number on their callerid. If they block all anonymous calls, they are restricting themselves to office hour calls. A physician on call cannot make such judgments. The patient they're calling back may...
by texasdiver
Wed Nov 02, 2016 8:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's the easiest/cheapest way to get a second phone number?
Replies: 34
Views: 2497

What's the easiest/cheapest way to get a second phone number?

Here's the deal. My wife and I recently relocated and didn't bother to set up a landline at our new home because we basically only use cell phones and internet. However my wife is a physician and would like to be able to return phone calls to patients from home without them being able to see her per...
by texasdiver
Sun Oct 30, 2016 12:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Passport renewal - old passport
Replies: 22
Views: 2928

Re: Passport renewal - old passport

[url][/http://argentinafees.com/ I would check the latest info on the website. We were there last year and needed the visa paper, things may have changed. We are going next Wednesday and will see if they check for a visa. Will let you know. Interesting. I looked at the State Dept website and it app...
by texasdiver
Tue Oct 25, 2016 7:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are car insurance deductibles by vehicle or by incident?
Replies: 1
Views: 321

Are car insurance deductibles by vehicle or by incident?

So my wife just texted me to let me know she bumped a co-workers car in the parking lot of her job and both cars have some minor bumper damage. I haven't had time to dig into our insurance policy except I know we have a $500 deductible. But I was wondering if that is per vehicle or per-incident. Any...
by texasdiver
Sun Oct 23, 2016 4:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NY Times first in a series about 403(b)s with public K-12
Replies: 121
Views: 13992

Re: NY Times first in a series about 403(b)s with public K-12

In Texas both Vanguard and Fidelity are available for teachers to use as self-administered 403(b) plans. I used Vanguard and there were no fees whatsoever. The only minor cost was that Admiral Shares were unavailable. So the only cost to me of my Vanguard school district 403(b) plan was the differe...
by texasdiver
Sun Oct 23, 2016 2:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NY Times first in a series about 403(b)s with public K-12
Replies: 121
Views: 13992

Re: NY Times first in a series about 403(b)s with public K-12

Teacher here. I've taught in both Texas and now in Washington State so my experience is limited to those two states. What I have found is the following: 1. Yes the sharks are definitely out in both parts of the country. Teaching is on an annual cycle where you sign up or re-enroll in all your benefi...
by texasdiver
Sat Oct 08, 2016 10:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I get a business credit card for our rental house?
Replies: 9
Views: 1063

Re: Can I get a business credit card for our rental house?

I don't think they care. I got a business card long ago for the miles. Just made up a business name... "my last name Consulting" and no one cared or checked. It was an Alaska Airlines business card through BofA and still have it.
by texasdiver
Thu Sep 29, 2016 12:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does it matter what type of college one goes to?
Replies: 250
Views: 16953

Re: Does it matter what type of college one goes to?

This wired magazine article has a very interesting graphic showing where the major west coast tech companies are drawing most of their employees. The graphic is too wide to link here directly so you'll have to click through the link to see it. https://www.wired.com/2014/05/alumni-network-2/ Here is ...
by texasdiver
Tue Sep 27, 2016 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does it matter what type of college one goes to?
Replies: 250
Views: 16953

Re: Does it matter what type of college one goes to?

High school teacher here who advises a lot of college bound seniors. The answer is that it completely depends on your future career path. Generally speaking, people go to college for three basic reasons: (1) to earn a pedigree, (2) to earn a job certification, or (3) to actually study a topic. Many ...

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