Search found 1550 matches

by rjbraun
Sat May 23, 2020 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Jeweler other than Tiffany who make nice sterling silver baby-related items (rattles, spoons, etc.)?
Replies: 5
Views: 476

Re: Jeweler other than Tiffany who make nice sterling silver baby-related items (rattles, spoons, etc.)?

I can't really attest to their quality. I bought a couple of things from them years ago. At the time, I think they were considered respectable and maybe mid- to upper-mid in quality and price. When I happened to look at some of their stuff online more recently, I was less impressed, but it's possibl...
by rjbraun
Sat May 23, 2020 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The axe falls and I am prepared. What's next?
Replies: 341
Views: 24360

Re: The axe falls and I am prepared. What's next?

KlangFool, the numbers seem good to me -- congrats on your success! Two things tho -- are you sure you can get unemployment insurance while receiving severance pay? And is your wife fine working for the next decade (?) for the health insurance benefits? ThankYouJack, <<Two things tho -- are you sur...
by rjbraun
Sat May 23, 2020 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The axe falls and I am prepared. What's next?
Replies: 341
Views: 24360

Re: The axe falls and I am prepared. What's next?

You could refinance your mortgage to a lower rate. There are 30 year mortgages under 3% with $0 closing costs right now. I am curious how that works for someone with strong assets but limited income. It could complicate things substantially. For that reason, and only that reason, I would keep the m...
by rjbraun
Sat May 23, 2020 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The axe falls and I am prepared. What's next?
Replies: 341
Views: 24360

Re: The axe falls and I am prepared. What's next?

KlangFool, Sorry about this latest development for you. I have also been unemployed several times throughout my career. I always tried to make the best of it, and even had friends or acquaintances remark how well I seemed to handle the situation. Still, I definitely also recall periods of anxiety, f...
by rjbraun
Thu May 14, 2020 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rethinking chase sapphire during pandemic
Replies: 8
Views: 1150

Re: Rethinking chase sapphire during pandemic

Yup, in a similar situation. Probably have about 325,000 UR points. I think my annual fee is coming up in the fall. That will come before I know it, so I guess I should come up with a plan. My thought before (pre-Covid-19) was that we would easily use the $300 travel credit for travel-related expens...
by rjbraun
Thu May 14, 2020 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to look for a good Primary Care Physician (PCP), and no price transparency...
Replies: 35
Views: 2056

Re: How to look for a good Primary Care Physician (PCP), and no price transparency...

Have skimmed most of the replies, which seem to offer good insights. Not an MD myself, but feel fortunate to have had good health and overall positive experiences with medical providers. Arguably, it may be harder for me to assess medical care as with good health maybe I have fewer opportunities to ...
by rjbraun
Tue May 12, 2020 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying estimated taxes using EFTPS using Mac computer
Replies: 5
Views: 306

Re: Paying estimated taxes using EFTPS using Mac computer

I've made EFTPS payments on my Mac running Safari. Don't recall ever having an issue, in that respect.
by rjbraun
Tue May 12, 2020 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has Your Spending Changed Since The Shutdown?
Replies: 180
Views: 6587

Re: Has Your Spending Changed Since The Shutdown?

Overall, food costs are down, if you count dining out as food and not "entertainment". Our grocery bill has definitely gone up. That's perhaps in part due to some stocking up, but it's mainly the result of not being overly price-sensitive. During the pandemic we have relied on grocery delivery. Espe...
by rjbraun
Sun May 10, 2020 8:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone
Replies: 172
Views: 14298

Re: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone

Are you looking for just a Lightning to analog headphone dongle? Then get Apple's: https://www.amazon.com/Apple-Lightning-Headphone-Jack-Adapter/dp/B01LXJFMGF/ The one you linked looks like it should work, but what gives me a bit of pause is when I click on the link for that manufacturer it shows a...
by rjbraun
Sun May 10, 2020 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone
Replies: 172
Views: 14298

Re: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone

I am happy with my iPhone SE and like its compactness. I also have an iPhone 7 for work (upgraded from a 6 that failed). I regularly end up using my SE for its phone jack, even for work-related calls. I definitely am interested in the new SE release, in the event I will need to upgrade, but I suspe...
by rjbraun
Fri May 08, 2020 9:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need advice for finding a specialist doctor appointment quickly
Replies: 24
Views: 2035

Re: Need advice for finding a specialist doctor appointment quickly

Thank You. Yes, when she contacted a couple of therapists, they said that she would need a combination of talk therapy and psychopharmacology. Hence the need for a psychiatrist. I will ask her to check with the PCP again if he can prescribe the necessary medication in conjunction with talk therapy ...
by rjbraun
Wed May 06, 2020 5:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should you tip landscapers?
Replies: 51
Views: 3225

Re: Should you tip landscapers?

Another option, either in lieu of or in addition to a tip, might be to provide a glowing online review, if that's an option. Of course, word-of-mouth referral(s) should also be highly appreciated, especially in the case of an independently-owned operation. If the team works for a company, maybe put ...
by rjbraun
Mon May 04, 2020 3:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Prime Membership Question
Replies: 84
Views: 6235

Re: Amazon Prime Membership Question

<snip> I did not have any luck getting food through Amazon at the beginning of the physical distancing, and I quit trying. <snip> If you are referring to Amazon Whole Foods delivery, I find more delivery slots have become available over the past week or so, more than I have found since mid-March or...
by rjbraun
Tue Apr 28, 2020 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Fire 7" Tablet - Ninth Generation
Replies: 18
Views: 1127

Re: Amazon Fire 7" Tablet - Ninth Generation

I got a Fire 7" Tablet about two years ago for about $20 with various discounts (actually, ~$10, but I could have used the $10 discount that got me there for something else, so I'm not counting it). I was curious to check out the Fire, basically. I thought I could use the Fire when I traveled and mi...
by rjbraun
Sun Apr 26, 2020 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Anyone found] amazing shopping deals now?
Replies: 30
Views: 3914

Re: [Anyone found] amazing shopping deals now?

Re: Amazon, I've generally been pleased with their service, perhaps even especially during the pandemic period. I have Prime through a family member, so, admittedly, I might feel differently if I were shelling out myself for an annual membership fee. I typically can wait for an order to be delivered...
by rjbraun
Fri Apr 24, 2020 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FreshDirect DeliveryPass - benefits / use questions
Replies: 0
Views: 141

FreshDirect DeliveryPass - benefits / use questions

We have had groceries delivered, so far, to avoid the need to visit a market during the pandemic. We live in NYC. After pretty much giving up on FreshDirect (FD), I managed to get a delivery this week. As I had read some about the DeliveryPass (DP) beforehand, it was already in my shopping cart at c...
by rjbraun
Thu Apr 23, 2020 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any other Essential employees getting extra perks
Replies: 5
Views: 709

Re: Any other Essential employees getting extra perks

I am not a healthcare worker but The North Face seems to have a 50% off one full-price item offer for healthcare workers (as defined in their terms). I haven't scrutinized the details but at first blush it seemed like an attractive offer for someone who might qualify and is in the market for new gea...
by rjbraun
Thu Apr 23, 2020 12:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good gift card option, preferably without fees
Replies: 9
Views: 486

Re: Good gift card option, preferably without fees

Thank you all for the feedback. Target could be a good option, though I'm not sure exactly where they shop (even if it's online). I too think that cash has merit, but as we all work remotely that is not an option. As for mailing them a check, I don't even have their home addresses, so it seems a bit...
by rjbraun
Wed Apr 22, 2020 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How are you doing laundry?
Replies: 15
Views: 1774

Re: How are you doing laundry?

I also live in a NYC apartment and won't use the laundry in the basement. <snip> Just out of curiosity what is your reluctance to use the laundry room in your basement? I also live in NYC in an apartment building and have yet to use the laundry room (during pandemic). The building is fairly small (...
by rjbraun
Wed Apr 22, 2020 4:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone
Replies: 172
Views: 14298

Re: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone

I am happy with my iPhone SE and like its compactness. I also have an iPhone 7 for work (upgraded from a 6 that failed). I regularly end up using my SE for its phone jack, even for work-related calls. I definitely am interested in the new SE release, in the event I will need to upgrade, but I suspe...
by rjbraun
Wed Apr 22, 2020 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How are you doing laundry?
Replies: 15
Views: 1774

Re: How are you doing laundry?

So far, have been washing clothes by hand. We purchased "travel clothes" earlier (pre-Covid) to use when, well, traveling. We've mainly been wearing those and it's worked out pretty well. They dry pretty quickly and are easy to maintain and comfortable to wear. We hang them and let them drip / dry i...
by rjbraun
Wed Apr 22, 2020 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone
Replies: 172
Views: 14298

Re: Apple Released a New Low-cost Iphone

I am happy with my iPhone SE and like its compactness. I also have an iPhone 7 for work (upgraded from a 6 that failed). I regularly end up using my SE for its phone jack, even for work-related calls. I definitely am interested in the new SE release, in the event I will need to upgrade, but I suspec...
by rjbraun
Wed Apr 22, 2020 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good gift card option, preferably without fees
Replies: 9
Views: 486

Good gift card option, preferably without fees

Thinking that a generic gift card would be the best thing to give our administrative assistants today for Administrative Assistants Day. We're all working remotely so whatever the gift is won't be given in person. I am thinking that an Amazon gift card may be the way to go. My reservation is that fo...
by rjbraun
Sat Apr 18, 2020 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension vs. simply investing? Is pension even worth it at all?
Replies: 58
Views: 3621

Re: Pension vs. simply investing? Is pension even worth it at all?

You raise an interesting question. I'm not sure it's so straightforward, though. I actually think pensions can be a good deal for someone who enters the public sector later in their career, particularly if that individual was paid relatively well beforehand. In that case they would presumably benefi...
by rjbraun
Fri Apr 17, 2020 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to deal with loud neighbor bass noise in NYC
Replies: 34
Views: 1798

Re: How to deal with loud neighbor bass noise in NYC

Several posters advise OP to move to another place but much of NYC living is apartment-style, particularly in Manhattan. Assuming OP ends up in another apartment building, they could end up again with a noisy neighbor. That said, I suppose some buildings may skew more to quiet or louder living condi...
by rjbraun
Wed Apr 15, 2020 8:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to Best Tip Amazon Delivery Workers?
Replies: 2
Views: 608

Re: How to Best Tip Amazon Delivery Workers?

I started using Amazon Whole Foods for grocery delivery the past few weeks. While finalizing the order I have a found a field for "Tip". Amazon states "100% of the tips are passed on to your courier." I take that at face value and take comfort that the courier who has always done a fantastic job wit...
by rjbraun
Mon Apr 13, 2020 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GoFundMe ... tipping!?
Replies: 33
Views: 3457

Re: GoFundMe ... tipping!?

OP here. Still thinking about GFM's business model -- not so much whether it's "good" or "bad", more just what it is. I wonder if they ask the people running GFM campaigns to also contribute to expenses (i.e., "to tip"). While I've never run a campaign (and don't have any plans to), if I were runnin...
by rjbraun
Sat Apr 11, 2020 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GoFundMe ... tipping!?
Replies: 33
Views: 3457

Re: GoFundMe ... tipping!?

What I really want in life though is an anonymous way to give to charity. I am loathe to give them checks, because I just end up on a bunch of new feel bad mailing lists. Perhaps a prepaid Visa or MasterCard debit card might provide the ability to anonymously donate. That's a really good idea. /I w...
by rjbraun
Sat Apr 11, 2020 10:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GoFundMe ... tipping!?
Replies: 33
Views: 3457

Re: GoFundMe ... tipping!?

Thanks for all the feedback. I agree with the post(s) that "tipping" is probably not the best word choice, imho, but I do appreciate GFM's transparency and will think about how to proceed. As I don't know the family personally, I don't have another way to support them. As for giving the family money...
by rjbraun
Sat Apr 11, 2020 9:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GoFundMe ... tipping!?
Replies: 33
Views: 3457

GoFundMe ... tipping!?

Sorry, don't mean to start yet another tipping thread, but I wanted to donate to a family who recently lost a relative (covid19, sadly). When I went to donate via GoFundMe, I actually got prompted for a tip. I don't recall seeing a tip aspect in the past, though I'm also not a frequent user of GoFun...
by rjbraun
Thu Apr 02, 2020 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?
Replies: 1590
Views: 128888

Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

I also have a half mask version but I already feel an idiot wearing my R95 paint mask. I do not think I could bring myself to wear the half mask version in public. I have found certain stores are not crowded at 6:00 or 7 in the morning. The bigger risk is not looking like an idiot. The bigger risk ...
by rjbraun
Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Seek Mental Health Help, Negative Consequences and Adverse Actions in future Personal Finance matters?
Replies: 30
Views: 2036

Re: Seek Mental Health Help, Negative Consequences and Adverse Actions in future Personal Finance matters?

... but paying cash doesn't necessarily stop the MIB report. An individual paying cash would have the ability to use an alternate name/identity/address to seek help without that fact being connected to his/her actual identity. Maybe, but I would be careful to read the fine print on the insurance pa...
by rjbraun
Sun Mar 22, 2020 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Corona and the “barebones” budget
Replies: 45
Views: 5919

Re: Corona and the “barebones” budget

Was about to say it's still early in the month . . . and now I see it's already the 22nd. Yikes. We're normally pretty careful with our money, but we are prepared to and do splurge. We just try to be mindful and not wasteful. What I find notable this month is that I'm prepared to pay up for convenie...
by rjbraun
Sun Mar 22, 2020 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying house this week
Replies: 22
Views: 2065

Re: Buying house this week

I can appreciate OP's hesitation, but it's hard to say without more information. Also, as a homeowner myself, I think there's a certain amount of leap in faith one takes when buying something as expensive and illiquid as a home. Another factor is OP's current situation. If they are renting, is the ...
by rjbraun
Sat Mar 21, 2020 4:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying house this week
Replies: 22
Views: 2065

Re: Buying house this week

I can appreciate OP's hesitation, but it's hard to say without more information. Also, as a homeowner myself, I think there's a certain amount of leap in faith one takes when buying something as expensive and illiquid as a home. Another factor is OP's current situation. If they are renting, is the r...
by rjbraun
Sat Mar 21, 2020 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping in the time of Coronavirus
Replies: 39
Views: 3188

Re: Tipping in the time of Coronavirus

midwest stlouis MO area :) don't want to get too specific on what pizza place i work for we aren't allowed to discuss tips with customers on a typical night i average $3.00-3.50 per delivery plus $4.73 hourly with reimbursement for mileage/ tips/ and hourly a typical driver makes $10-$12/hour ..dep...
by rjbraun
Fri Mar 20, 2020 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping in the time of Coronavirus
Replies: 39
Views: 3188

Re: Tipping in the time of Coronavirus

when you work for pizza delivery 100% of the tips (on credit cards or cash) goes to the driver (well, more like 80% since uncle Sam keeps the other portion :) ) thank you all for the kind replies once again, i don't expect to make a living off this - but it gets you by at certain times over tippers...
by rjbraun
Fri Mar 20, 2020 9:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping in the time of Coronavirus
Replies: 39
Views: 3188

Re: Tipping in the time of Coronavirus

Just bumped my tip for Amazon Whole Foods delivery today. I think the default (pre-filled) tip on Amazon was $10, but I changed this to $15. Once I received the delivery everything was packed in more bags than I would have expected. Based on my last two deliveries, Whole Foods only seems to fill the...
by rjbraun
Fri Mar 20, 2020 3:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Whole Foods food delivery via Amazon
Replies: 6
Views: 946

Re: Whole Foods food delivery via Amazon

Sounds like things worked out! Earlier this week, I struggled to create and then find again grocery list. Click on an item, then click 'add to grocery list'. . . The mysterious list has never been seen again, despite a significant amount of time searching through the help menus, 'lists' menus etc. ...
by rjbraun
Fri Mar 20, 2020 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Whole Foods food delivery via Amazon
Replies: 6
Views: 946

Re: Whole Foods food delivery via Amazon

Update: Here is what I have learned, so far, and my current strategy to try to keep food, etc. stocked at home. Whole Foods (WF): Stuff I place in cart indeed seems to "disappear" when the product is no longer available. I understand that can happen, I just wish WF would somehow notify me of the cha...
by rjbraun
Thu Mar 19, 2020 2:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Whole Foods food delivery via Amazon
Replies: 6
Views: 946

Whole Foods food delivery via Amazon

I got my first Whole Foods home delivery yesterday by ordering through my Amazon account. Overall, I was satisfied and would like to continue to place orders while we pretty much stay home during the coronavirus pandemic, at least for now. I have used FreshDirect in the past and was curious about so...
by rjbraun
Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll - Coronavirus - How much cash do you keep home?
Replies: 21
Views: 1120

Re: Poll - Coronavirus - How much cash do you keep home?

I meant to get a bit more cash recently to keep on hand, but every time I was going to the timing wasn't convenient (wasn't going straight home say, and didn't want to be carrying too much money on me). I suppose I could hit an ATM the next time I go out -- exact date/time tbd. Will see. I just plac...
by rjbraun
Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portable wash basin for hand laundry
Replies: 5
Views: 258

Re: Portable wash basin for hand laundry

Went with this one. Seems slightly bigger than the other one I posted about. Reviews indicate that it should also be sturdy, a concern.

https://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/ ... le-dishpan
by rjbraun
Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portable wash basin for hand laundry
Replies: 5
Views: 258

Re: Portable wash basin for hand laundry

SR II wrote:
Mon Mar 16, 2020 12:44 pm
How about using the kitchen sink?
Eh, I guess I'm not a fastidious enough housekeeper to consider using the kitchen sink to wash clothes on a routine basis. Besides, I can definitely see times when we are cooking and trying to wash clothes concurrently.
by rjbraun
Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portable wash basin for hand laundry
Replies: 5
Views: 258

Re: Portable wash basin for hand laundry

I would recommend something like a Cambro bus box. If you plan on also camping you can get 3 for wash, rinse, and chemical sanitizer for dish washing. When not being used for their main purpose, they make great storage and transport bins. They’re available in different sizes and colors and are very...
by rjbraun
Mon Mar 16, 2020 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portable wash basin for hand laundry
Replies: 5
Views: 258

Portable wash basin for hand laundry

We live in an apartment building with a shared laundry room in the basement. Thinking that we may try to do more hand laundry at home as we wait to see how the coronavirus pandemic develops. Especially now that we're working from home and not going out so much, our clothing attire will be less of a ...
by rjbraun
Sun Mar 15, 2020 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone taking advantage of extremely cheap flights?
Replies: 33
Views: 2957

Re: Anyone taking advantage of extremely cheap flights?

It's not the cost of the flights that's enticing. The thought of being able to explore, say, Venice without having to deal with crowds and basically having the city to yourself - that's what's really tempting. Venice without crowds sounds delightful. Venice without crowds, in a locked down country ...
by rjbraun
Sat Mar 14, 2020 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apparatus for laundry in a small NYC apartment ?
Replies: 18
Views: 962

Re: Apparatus for laundry in a small NYC apartment ?

Nice to know that soap and dryer kills germs. I can choose to do laundry at late night to avoid interaction. How do you plan to wash larger things like bed sheets? We're in a similar situation, but I guess I figured that the laundry soap in the washing machine would kill germs. I would think but do...
by rjbraun
Fri Mar 13, 2020 11:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apparatus for laundry in a small NYC apartment ?
Replies: 18
Views: 962

Re: Apparatus for laundry in a small NYC apartment ?

How do you plan to wash larger things like bed sheets? We're in a similar situation, but I guess I figured that the laundry soap in the washing machine would kill germs. I would think but don't know that the dryer heat might also help to kill germs. Are you concerned about germs in the washing machi...
by rjbraun
Tue Mar 10, 2020 2:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?
Replies: 1590
Views: 128888

Re: Coronavirus (Consumer Issues) How you are preparing?

Other than what is commonly recommended, I have purchased an extra box of cold-eeze zinc lozenges. I've used them for years at the first sign of a cold. Most of the time, they stopped my colds from progressing within a day or two. There's recent reports of a 70's era virologist/pathologist who stud...