Search found 2581 matches

by epilnk
Wed Jul 24, 2013 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pick up double major or finish college in 3 years?
Replies: 112
Views: 10340

Re: pick up double major or finish college in 3 years?

If her 2nd major is going to be music, don't do it. Music is not going to complement her economics degree and as a person who has hired numerous people in the past, I wouldn't give a hoot. Graduate early and the one year she starts income is going to make a BIG different down the road in terms of s...
by epilnk
Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford private school?
Replies: 87
Views: 9302

Re: Can we afford private school?

To follow up on Jodydavis's post, if I were to "split the difference," I would send the children to a good Montessori pre-school (a real one, not one that just calls itself that) and then do middle school (if possible) but definitely high school in the most rigorous school available to you (whether...
by epilnk
Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford private school?
Replies: 87
Views: 9302

Re: Can we afford private school?

The be the world's leading scientist you do need the education, entrance into MIT and all the associated non-quantifiable benefits one gets from exposure to that type of an environment. The Nobel Prize in Physics 2012 David J. Wineland Encina High School, San Juan Unified School District, Sacrament...
by epilnk
Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford private school?
Replies: 87
Views: 9302

Re: Can we afford private school?

My son's piano lessons won't keep him out of a STEM career, which appears to be the direction he's heading in. He was forced to take ceramics (his only B ever), but it was good for him, if not his GPA :D His piano lessons may be doing more to further a "STEM" career than anything else he's studying...
by epilnk
Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford private school?
Replies: 87
Views: 9302

Re: Can we afford private school?

Since education is an investment, the ROI on arts, social sciences and humanities is significantly lower than STEM degrees. I think I could support an idea of a private school that emphasises subjects relevant to STEM since those subjects and ultimately degrees will lead to far better job prospects...
by epilnk
Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Isn't it a good thing if bond prices fall?
Replies: 125
Views: 13752

Re: Isn't it a good thing if bond prices fall?

1) Interest rates rise in the next two years...most likely scenario; but as you point out, not a certainty. If correct, then at the end of two years, I'll cash out of CDs and buy bond funds at deflated market prices. You will experience a decline in the market value of your holdings and this declin...
by epilnk
Sat Jul 20, 2013 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bookshelves
Replies: 26
Views: 5145

Re: Bookshelves

The Billys hold up pretty well for particle board - I don't even know how old ours are but over a decade, and only a couple of the shelves with the heaviest textbooks are showing any sag. They're cheap enough that you could always pick up a couple of spare shelves if you are worried about warping. 1...
by epilnk
Fri Jul 19, 2013 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Weber Grill and Consumer Reports
Replies: 44
Views: 8099

Re: Weber Grill and Consumer Reports

Our Weber is 16 years old and appears to be decomposing. I wanted to replace it this year but the husband insists that he can keep swapping out parts indefinitely. Based on this thread it sounds like he's right.
by epilnk
Fri Jul 19, 2013 1:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford private school?
Replies: 87
Views: 9302

Re: Can we afford private school?

I'm surprised nobody has yet suggested the most obvious piece of advice: if you (or your husband) is committed to private school, buy a house in the worst nearby school district. Housing prices are based largely on school scores and you will pay much less for the same size home in a less desirable s...
by epilnk
Tue Jul 16, 2013 1:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Isn't it a good thing if bond prices fall?
Replies: 125
Views: 13752

Re: Isn't it a good thing if bond prices fall?

No...I'm really not a market timer! I would much prefer following my prescribed allocation of 40% equities and 60% bonds. But, there are times when (call it tactical allocation if you will) it simply does not make common sense to follow a rigid policy with respect to of portfolio allocation. This i...
by epilnk
Fri Jul 12, 2013 3:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Isn't it a good thing if bond prices fall?
Replies: 125
Views: 13752

Re: Isn't it a good thing if bond prices fall?

I'm not a market timer, but there are times when sitting out of the market makes sense. With respect to the bond market, this is one of those times. For those that say you cannot time the market, I respond with these questions: What's the worst that can happen if you sit out of the bond market for ...
by epilnk
Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalance into Long Term Treasuries?
Replies: 27
Views: 2361

Re: Rebalance into Long Term Treasuries?

At the rate we're going lately it's almost time for me to do this too. And I will. I won't like it, though. So far I've never regretted sticking to the plan in the long run, but I usually regret it in the short run.
by epilnk
Thu Jul 04, 2013 8:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Poll] What's Your Current Mode of Camping?
Replies: 93
Views: 10269

Re: [Poll] What's Your Current Mode of Camping?

This is going to be the most pretentious thing I think I have ever said (at least on this site): If you are camping in more than a tent, you are not camping. That is like calling it "boating" when you go on a cruise. In my youth I felt this way too. But the young don't stay young forever, and I am ...
by epilnk
Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Big Island Hawaii
Replies: 45
Views: 5728

Re: Big Island Hawaii

Already mentioned, but it cannot be repeated too many times: the Place of Refuge, Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historic Park. My favorite place, perhaps anywhere.
by epilnk
Tue Jul 02, 2013 7:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car recommendations for a growing active family
Replies: 19
Views: 2858

Re: Car recommendations for a growing active family

I really wish I could find a station wagon I liked with a small pop up third row seat. It wouldn't even need to be comfortable, rear facing would be fine; all I want is seat belts that would allow me to haul a couple of extra kids across town now and then. (In my day we could pile a half dozen kids ...
by epilnk
Sat Jun 29, 2013 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anybody who bought a Kindle go back to regular books?
Replies: 74
Views: 6873

Re: Anybody who bought a Kindle go back to regular books?

Go back? I love my kindle, but that doesn't mean I've left real books. I read both happily. I have an original keyboard kindle, which I still think is the best one, and my son has a paperwhite. While I envy his built in lighting I don't think it's worth trading physical page turn buttons. I will say...
by epilnk
Sat Jun 29, 2013 6:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Poll] What's Your Current Mode of Camping?
Replies: 93
Views: 10269

Re: [Poll] What's Your Current Mode of Camping?

I used to backpack back in the day, but that was when my back and I were much younger. Now we rent a tent cabin with for a week: mattresses, shared bathroom facilities with hot water showers, and meals provided at a central dining hall 1/4 mile away. It's a good compromise to get the kids out into t...
by epilnk
Fri Jun 21, 2013 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What did you give your wife on your wedding day?
Replies: 81
Views: 7114

Re: What did you give your wife on your wedding day?

He got me a ring, similar to the one I got him. I still wear it. Spousal wedding presents are silly; there is no need to add to or distract from the main event. Gifts should be saved for another occasion, or none at all - there will be no shortage of opportunities for gift giving. The push present i...
by epilnk
Fri Jun 21, 2013 7:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Compensation Plan
Replies: 18
Views: 1783

Re: Deferred Compensation Plan

Thanks, everyone - we decided to sign up for next year. We'll probably only contribute during high tax bracket years (it varies), since we can't necessarily control when it pays out. But with our lack of tax protected space, the alternative for this chunk of cash would probably be CA munis. If I had...
by epilnk
Fri Jun 21, 2013 12:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Time to buy bonds!
Replies: 26
Views: 6371

Re: Time to buy bonds!

ofcmetz wrote:My IPS calls for me to put new contributions into the asset class that is lower than its set percentage. I've been buying bonds all year.
Me too. I just wish yesterdays purchase, which was fairly large, had waited until today - I could have picked up 1% more shares.
by epilnk
Thu Jun 20, 2013 11:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Compensation Plan
Replies: 18
Views: 1783

Deferred Compensation Plan

My husband has been offered enrollment in a Deferred Compensation Plan, and we're trying to figure out whether to accept it. He can elect to defer a portion of his income until retirement, and the principal will grow at the Moody's corporate bond index (currently over 5%, though dropping of course),...
by epilnk
Wed Jun 19, 2013 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why buy expensive cars
Replies: 271
Views: 33521

Re: Why buy expensive cars

As a twenty-something male, I and my friends think that driving a nicer car makes it easier to get dates. How on earth would your prospect know what you drive before you ask her out? Assuming you're not cruising for hookers, of course. When I met my husband he was driving some godforsaken Chevy eco...
by epilnk
Wed Jun 19, 2013 7:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bonds Investors running for the hills
Replies: 56
Views: 6287

Re: Bonds Investors running for the hills

I just bought a big chunk of VCAIX this week, increasing the number of shares by more than 10%. No CDs for me.
by epilnk
Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Printer Needed
Replies: 64
Views: 11058

Re: New Printer Needed

I had a series of HP printers that have all died before their time....the ink gets clogged up if you don't use the thing frequently. I recently switched to a Brother Color Inkjet All in One (print, scan, copy, fax) with wireless. Bought it at Staples. It cleans itself every day or every other day. ...
by epilnk
Sun Jun 09, 2013 7:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If only the ER for Vanguard funds was a bit higher.
Replies: 32
Views: 3776

Re: If only the ER for Vanguard funds was a bit higher.

If Fido and VG offered the same service for the same price there would not be much reason to choose one over the other. Fortunately we do have a choice between two excellent options offering similar but not identical services. It sounds like Fidelity is the better value for you while VG is the bette...
by epilnk
Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's the right allocation to international bonds?
Replies: 39
Views: 4484

Re: What's the right allocation to international bonds?

I'm going with zero. I don't have anything against this asset class. But if I were going to raise the risk of my bond allocation I would need to compensate by lowering my equity/bond ratio. I don't particularly want to buy more bonds right now. So I'll continue to leave the bulk of my risk on the eq...
by epilnk
Wed Jun 05, 2013 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long does the IRS have to give us our $?
Replies: 9
Views: 1566

Re: How long does the IRS have to give us our $?

MnD wrote:3% interest rate starting after 45 days after the return deadline is due.
Bummer. We filed early, knowing that too much was withheld, but I guess this means 45 days after April 15th, or more or less now.
by epilnk
Wed Jun 05, 2013 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long does the IRS have to give us our $?
Replies: 9
Views: 1566

Re: How long does the IRS have to give us our $?

OK, thanks; it sounds like I just have to be patient. Maybe I should adopt the attitude that they're probably doing me a favor by keeping the money. I'd be required to put it into our bond funds, which are hanging at my rebalance threshold. So maybe a little IRS-mandated market timing will give the ...
by epilnk
Wed Jun 05, 2013 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying off mortgage question
Replies: 21
Views: 2037

Re: Paying off mortgage question

Heck, no - wiping out your emergency fund is a terrible idea. However you have a big chunk of change that can't be earning much over 0% interest, so why not eliminate part of your debt now? You could be free of car and education debt today without even noticing anything other than improved cash flow...
by epilnk
Tue Jun 04, 2013 7:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long does the IRS have to give us our $?
Replies: 9
Views: 1566

How long does the IRS have to give us our $?

Due to one time events, we are supposed to get a larger than normal refund this year. Due to one time events, instead of a refund the IRS sent us a letter telling us they were going to take a closer than normal look at our return this year. OK, fine - that's their job. But how long do they get to si...
by epilnk
Thu May 30, 2013 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: WaPo: Teaching kids how to manage money
Replies: 6
Views: 1459

Re:

Any tips for teaching preschoolers? I have a 4 1/2 year old son and a 16 month old daughter. An allowance of less than a dollar, and trips to the dollar store to spend it. I started my 4 year old with $.75 and his 3 year old brother at $.50. To a preschooler, the dollar store represents the entire ...
by epilnk
Sun May 26, 2013 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: You CAN Buy Happiness
Replies: 10
Views: 1590

Re: You CAN Buy Happiness

Can there be happiness in poverty? Yes. Only in America. No job, alcohol and marijuana, no worries, what's not to love. No, outside of America. Guatemala, for example, repeatedly ranks among the happiest countries in the world despite an economy devastated by decades of genocidal civil war, where h...
by epilnk
Sun May 26, 2013 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you tip on take out?
Replies: 70
Views: 6778

Re: Do you tip on take out?

Nope. Having worked as a server, I find the idea completely demeaning. A server is constantly advocating for those whom he serves and is whisking himself back and forth quite feverishly at times. Meanwhile, with takeout food you're looking at food being shoveled into some makeshift container and th...
by epilnk
Fri May 24, 2013 4:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm Bullish on Bonds
Replies: 83
Views: 9538

Re: I'm Bullish on Bonds

I don't like the low yields, but I really don't know what bonds are going to do, or when. For the past I-don't-know-how-many years all the gloomy predictions have been wrong. Last year I had cash to put toward FI on the taxable side of the portfolio. I already had a lot in CA munis, I didn't feel li...
by epilnk
Fri May 17, 2013 1:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??
Replies: 289
Views: 33615

Re: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??

That seems all very sensible, but also seems like it takes the romance out of it, which, if there is a point, strikes me as the only point. I'm thinking about all those 1940s movies where Clark Gable shows up at the most inopportune moment down on one knee as she opens the box, bursts into tears an...
by epilnk
Sat May 11, 2013 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pay Digital Subscription Newspapers
Replies: 38
Views: 2835

Re: Pay Digital Subscription Newspapers

I live in a largish town, and the local paper is thin and fairly low content. However I like living in the kind of town that is able to support a local paper, so we subscribe (digital and print for one price). In addition to coverage of school board debates and front page feature articles about the ...
by epilnk
Fri May 10, 2013 8:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??
Replies: 289
Views: 33615

Re: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??

IMO women want a very visible sign that somebody loves them more, as you said men get a similar ego boost from buying way too much car or house. It isn't necessarily a display of wealth, but it is all about image. The ring represents the man's image, not the woman's. Plenty of men get a big ego boo...
by epilnk
Fri May 10, 2013 12:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??
Replies: 289
Views: 33615

Re: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??

IMO women want a very visible sign that somebody loves them more, as you said men get a similar ego boost from buying way too much car or house. It isn't necessarily a display of wealth, but it is all about image. The ring represents the man's image, not the woman's. Plenty of men get a big ego boo...
by epilnk
Thu May 09, 2013 8:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??
Replies: 289
Views: 33615

Re: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??

Actually if the ring is being purchased as a form of wealth display it does make sense to spend two months salary on it, or even more if you can afford it. In that case the ring needs to reflect well on the man's earning power, and actually can be important to both husband and wife since it fits the...
by epilnk
Wed May 08, 2013 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??
Replies: 289
Views: 33615

Re: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??

I recall reading in Emily Post years ago that if she breaks the engagement, she returns the ring. If he breaks it, she gets to keep the ring. Now I will contemplate for a moment why only women receive engagement rings. That must have been back when you had to prove adultery or something equally das...
by epilnk
Wed May 08, 2013 4:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: general (financial) advice about musical instruments/lessons
Replies: 109
Views: 10481

Re: general (financial) advice about musical instruments/les

I don't have empirical proof to back this up, but I think it's better to start with a chord-based instrument (piano, guitar, harp) than a melodic instrument (violin, horn, etc.). The piano is probably the most versatile of these, and will open up a lot of other instruments if the kids want that. I ...
by epilnk
Wed May 08, 2013 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: iPad Mini vs Kindle Fire HD 7"
Replies: 10
Views: 1720

Re: iPad Mini vs Kindle Fire HD 7"

If you are an avid Apple product user, just get the mini. I've never met anyone who doesn't love the thing. I love mine. I have amazon prime and read kindle books on the mini sometimes, but I prefer e-ink to a backlit screen so I actually prefer my original kindle for books. If you want to save a fe...
by epilnk
Wed May 08, 2013 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??
Replies: 289
Views: 33615

Re: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??

A gift given in contemplation of marriage (e.g., an engagement ring) must be returned to the giver if the marriage is called off. I think in most states, it is treated as a no-fault situation, so regardless of whose fault it was, the ring is returned. Yep, a "conditional gift" in most states. The o...
by epilnk
Wed May 08, 2013 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??
Replies: 289
Views: 33615

Re: How Much Did You Spend on Your Engagement Ring??

Well, I'm still married 39 years later so I guess the answer is to find out what your wife wants rather than asking an online forum. 113 replies and counting, and this right here is the only answer needed. There is no amount you "should" spend. The ring is objectively worth little, and certainly no...
by epilnk
Wed May 01, 2013 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When you reach your number and keep working
Replies: 71
Views: 8371

Re: When you reach your number and keep working

The recent MMM discussion got me wondering what you would do if you reach your "number" and for whatever reason, continue working. I can think of several possibilities and would like to know the Boglehead's thoughts and/or experience on these (or others). 1. Carry on as usual. Keep being frugal, ke...
by epilnk
Sat Apr 27, 2013 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Time has arrived... and we need some advice.
Replies: 51
Views: 5062

Re: College Time has arrived... and we need some advice.

gkaplan wrote:I agree. I get so angry when people question a liberal arts type of degree.
As a scientist, I do too. The devaluation of the liberal arts is I think a factor in why we are graduating so many science majors who cannot think.
by epilnk
Sat Apr 27, 2013 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Discussion forums for older people?
Replies: 14
Views: 2359

Re: Discussion forums for older people?

Since this forum is designed to limit conversations within fairly narrow confines I've been migrating over to reddit as an alternative for most discussions. Unfortunately reddit skews very young. I did find this post with a list, but it's an old list and the few links I clicked on look dormant. Stil...
by epilnk
Sat Apr 27, 2013 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Death knell of Coffeehouse Investor
Replies: 30
Views: 6039

Re: Death knell of Coffeehouse Investor

I wish bonds would just go ahead and plunge already. I'm getting so tired of this. Plus I want to be putting new money into bonds this year.
by epilnk
Thu Apr 25, 2013 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Switching iPhone to Android...PITA?
Replies: 55
Views: 3938

Re: Switching iPhone to Android...PITA?

Whether your phone gets the latest OS update ASAP seems to be a bit of an odd argument except for those who work in the tech industry, especially those who need the latest for development and testing. The most important feature in the latest version of any operating system is that it contains the l...
by epilnk
Tue Apr 23, 2013 1:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Explaining College Options to your Kids (x2)
Replies: 9
Views: 1336

Re: Explaining College Options to your Kids (x2)

One step at a time, dude. The right way to approach this will depend upon a million other little decisions you've made over the course of raising them. Taking into consideration their innate personalities of course, which may differ significantly - what works for one may not work for the other. You ...