Posts tagged ‘Beat’

Beat the Credit Crunch This Christmas With a Secret Santa

We always feel a pinch of Credit Crunch during Christmas especially when it comes to gift giving. Since we are under the pressure of financial crisis during this time, why don’t we think of alternative ways on how are we able to save? Especially during Christmas season? Secret Santa is actually a good way of giving gifts to people. It’s kind of fun and exciting way of exchanging gifts and also a great way for us to save money.

Secret Santa is a typical exchange of gifts in a group. One person doesn’t need to buy one gift for each person in the group but to one only. The names of the participants are put to a hat and each person will draw out one name. Each drawn name will remain secret from the rest of the group. Every person will be the secret Santa of the person that they’ve drawn. The group will decide the price limit for the gifts and will decide the date when to exchange the gifts.

This way of exchanging gifts is a good solution especially for a large family. Every member will have enough time to prepare one special gift for just one family member. All family members are entitled to join.

During the expected date of exchanging the gifts, all are gathered and each Santa can personally give his/her gift to their receiver. In some occasions all the gifts are gathered and are placed in one corner and a representative picks a gift and call out the name of the recipient. There are instances when the giver won’t place his/her name on the gift so the receiver will not know who gave the gift, this is when the giver wants to remain anonymous to his/her recipient.

This type of exchange gift is very practical and money saving. One will be able to really prepare and spend for that one special gift for one special person only. Probably, other savings or money of the group can be spent for food and/or for more important matter.

Secret Santa way of exchanging gifts could be a very memorable experience for the family during Christmas. No worries of spending to all members of the family because each member is already expecting one special gift that would be enough to be happy and appreciative at Christmas time.

Sometimes finding the right Christmas gifts for your friends and relatives can cause a headache. Therefore, we compiled a list of top selling Christmas gifts 2009 to rest your mind. Also, if you have friends or relatives that have new born babies, make sure to check out our Christmas gifts for baby catalog which I am sure you will find lots of useful resources over there. So see you around!

Conservatories and Double Glazing Can Help You Beat the Credit Crunch

The current economic climate has meant that for the first time in years we have seen falling house prices and some unfortunate people are finding themselves in negative equity. Therefore for many people who would of been looking to move home are finding that they are in a position where this is not an option. Instead of moving house many people are opting to improve their current home instead. They are doing this for two reasons not only will it make it their home a more enjoyable place to live but also because it will hopefully increase the value of the property if the decide to sell.

There are many different improvements you can make to a home but some of the most popular are fitted kitchens, bathrooms, replacement windows and conservatories. Depending on how old your existing kitchen or bathroom are will depend on if they need replacing or not. However, if they do need replacing kitchens and bathrooms can help to give your home a real wow factor.

Double glazing will help to give your home what the estate agents call curb appeal. This basically means making your home more aesthetically pleasing on the outside. By making your house more appealing on the outside is likely to attract more interest if you do decide to sell. Double glazing will also help you to save money as it helps to keep the heat in during the winter months meaning it will lower your gas and electricity bills.

Although the initial outlay of adding a conservatory to your home can be considerable, they are one of the best ways of adding value to your property. Adding conservatories to your home mean you are adding extra living space which is always a good thing. Conservatories are also very desirable and often something which is on house buyers wish list. A conservatory can therefore help you home to stand out from the crowd.

Whether you are wanting to improve your home to make it a more enjoyable place to live or you are wanting to claw back some of the value you have lost due to the credit crunch making improvements to your home if done right can make a huge difference to your home.

For more information on Double Glazing, Conservatories and Replacement Windows please visit our website or call into your local show room.

Beat The Credit Crunch With Accounting Jobs

Opting for accounting jobs has turned into a popular pattern in the current economical recession. Since the great depression, many people are finding themselves in a lot of financial problems and stress. With the job marketing becoming more stringent and hard to breeze through in the current day and age, there are only limited job fields that offer a bright and successful future to the prospective employees or people who are searching for new working opportunities.

Finance or monetary strength is seen as the building blocks to every successful business. It should not come to one as a surprise that there is a great need for accounting jobs in the current market and the supply of the workforce is not that outstanding unfortunately. For those whom are unaware of the job description of accounting jobs, it mainly entails around the idea of monitoring cash leaving and coming into a business.

The difficulty of accounting jobs varies based on which institute one is employed in. To be considered for accountancy related work, one is usually recommended to be certified by a qualified accountancy body. The requirements to be considered for such job roles vary depending on your countries authorized requirement body.

If you are looking to apply for an accountancy connected job, there are many ways that you can attempt in doing so. The most common strategy that many are known to do is to go to a career centre. These types of job centres are usually located on the high street and are known to have the most up to date work available in the market.

If you are not having any success with getting an accountancy job at a work centre that matches your preferences, another place you could consider exploring would be online. Seeing as searching for work online has become quite popular, there are many websites online that are currently offering this service. Even though this is the situation, it is important that you only choose a website that is known to hold a very good reputation in the job market.

Another option that one could consider in relation to finding work related to accountancy is looking for recruitment agencies. These agencies are dedicated individuals that help one find work that suit their particular expertise. The only downside in searching for accounting jobs through recruitment agencies is that they usually take a percentage of your wages for a set period of time.

The author of this article is an expert in employment and recruitment in the UK. The author also runs one of the most useful UK’s job search engine. If you are looking for Accounting Jobs begin your search at

Beat the Credit Crunch With a Weekday Lodger

With the UK now firmly in the grip of a recession, everyone could do with an extra income to help meet the bills each month, but where is it going to come from? If you are a homeowner the answer may well be right under your nose in the form of your spare room. Could you clear it out, give it a lick of paint and furnish it modestly? If so you can probably find yourself one of a growing number of “weekday only” lodgers.
Unlike a full time lodger, who arrives with a van load of possessions and can completely disrupt the harmony of your home, a weekday lodger is usually quiet, travels light, and is hardly ever there.

Take the example of John, a typical weekday lodger. He is 41, lives in Manchester, and worked for a large bank until six months ago when he was made redundant. After several months looking for local work with no success, John secured a six month contract in London. The money is good, but John lives too far from London to make commuting practical. Staying in a London hotel or B&B during the week is too expensive, not to mention depressing and lonely, so John becomes a weekday lodger.

John rents a room for five nights a week with a family close to where he works. His landlords are a middle aged couple who have a rooms to spare since their children have flown the nest. Now his commute to work is just a 10 minute drive each morning, or a 30 minute walk if he is feeling energetic. John arrives with hold-all in hand every Sunday night (occasionally early Monday morning), and stays until Friday morning when he packs his bag and heads back North, vacating his “weekday home from home” for the weekend.

This arrangement suits everyone. John’s needs are simple: a comfortable, clean and homely place to stay, and a hassle free lodging agreement ( all John’s bills are included in the rent). He works hard and is usually in bed early, so the peace and quiet is very important to him, as is access to laundry facilities, and being able to prepare a healthy home cooked meal at the end of a busy day. These are the sorts of things that make him feel a little more at home. Since he is mostly in work, sleeping, or at home in Manchester, John sees little of his landlords, but enjoys having someone to chat to in the evenings.

So maybe you could look again at that spare room. A weekday lodger provides you with around 70% of the full rental value of the room (the first £4250 of which is entirely tax-free each year in the UK). Best of all though – you get your home to yourself when you want it most, at the weekend.

Chris Gill

Beat the Market Meltdown – Go Green!

Exactly how energy efficient house windows can really help eliminate carbon foot printing and reduce your power costs.   Green problems and carbon emissions specifically have become a growing concern to your public.   Purchasing green domiciles features even come to be a government priority. Not only will green homes play a role in reducing carbon emissions, they could in addition conserve the Brit economy £12.6 billion a-year. Green domiciles could begin making huge cost savings because of the year 2020.  

The us government is hoping the widespread of energy conservation windows and eco-friendly wall insulation will play an important role in reaching these objectives set by the UK federal government. That is why the Uk federal government is starting schemes to guide green insulation like double glazing. These schemes had been introduced in to the UNITED KINGDOM federal government’s 2009/2010 budget into the hope that they’ll produce tasks inside building business.  

Schemes to aid the extensive of green insulation will benefit individuals. Fitted energy efficient house windows will save homes huge amounts to their energy costs, along with lowering their particular carbon emissions.  

The reason behind this being that double glazing windows are produced away from UPVC that will be a building material that helps wthhold the heat within the building. What this means is structures that use these green insulation products, like dual glazing, tend to be heated better. With energy conservation house windows preserving to 90% of temperature reduction, these buildings have a lower carbon footprint than buildings that use more conventional insulation materials.   The background for two fold glazing house windows can be follows:  

Run 9 tvs for a complete 12 months
Drive over 1,000 kilometer (625 kilometers) in an average automobile
Make 34,000 glasses of beverage

    These impressive functions will undoubtedly encourage property owners and regional authorities to fit energy preservation house windows. Additionally they will additionally be capable enjoy the federal government schemes to promote dual glazing in a bid to cut carbon emissions by 22 percent versus 1990 by 12 months 2020.   These measures have also developed a motivation for construction companies to stimulate the housing industry by providing first time purchasers brand new domiciles fitted with energy-efficient insulation including energy-efficient windows. This indicates that dual glazing and energy saving wall insulation will contribute to reducing carbon emissions and decreasing the costs of home owner’s utility bills. Double glazing is almost certainly one of the better answers to reduce steadily the carbon footprint and defeat the market meltdown.  

Article Resource:

Even More Credit Score Articles

Beat The Credit Crunch – Grow Your Own Fruit And Veg And Become Self-sufficient

Living on a budget is a problem affecting many families these days, not just in the UK, but all over the world. Food prices are rising while income is falling. Taxation is rising as countries – especially in the euro zone try to balance their budgets and extract more and more cash from the people so that governments can balance their books. This is evident in the recent fiscal changes imposed by governments in the UK, Greece, Germany, Spain, Ireland, France and Portugal.

We have already discussed some of things we can do to help make savings on our food budget in our previous article, Cooking on a budget. In this article, we will look at how we can grow our own fruit and vegetables for the table and supply longer-term products through freezing and converting fresh fruit to preserves, such as jam, chutney and relishes. All these little luxury items cost money. If we can make them ourselves, so much the better.

When we retired to Spain in 2003, we had all kinds of plans to become self sufficient in fruit and vegetables. It did not quite work out that way however as the soil was impoverished and the irrigation was non-existent. We have fruit trees all around us and grow oranges, tangerines, clementines, pears, figs, grapes, olives, lemons, meddlers, apples and quince. This gives us a long period of preparing jams, marmalades and chutney because the fruits mature at different times.

We found all the vegetables we tried to grow would either bolt or wither because of the immense heat during the summer growing periods. We could grow lettuce but had to use them very young because they tended to run to seed very quickly. No problem with that however, as young fresh lettuce leaves go great in any salad dish. Then we found out that if we planted in large plastic buckets we could move the plants around and place them under the trees for protection when it got too hot. The plastic bucket we use is actually a fruit pickers basket made of strong flexible plastic about two feet across at the top and about two feet deep.

We found them ideal for growing all types of vegetables from potatoes to spring onions. Just one small hole in the base to prevent the soil from becoming waterlogged is all that is necessary. We pay about 2 euros for these containers – a fraction of the cost of plant pots. A brisk walk around the site with a 2 gallon watering can every morning supplies all the water that the plants need. You could use any type of container to grow your vegetables, from old boots to paint cans (just make sure that the paint is cleaned out and is non-toxic). Grow bags are excellent for tomatoes and runner beans, while hanging baskets and window boxes a great for herbs and even training tomatoes. Using these techniques, you can easily turn your backyard into a mini allotment producing all kinds of fruit and vegetables.

You can also take the organic route by growing your vegetables this way. There are plenty of concentrated organic based fertilizers available that will help your plants thrive. A capful or two of the concentrate in a watering can once a week can do wonders to the size and taste of your crop.
Depending on the space available to you, these are just some of the plants that you can grow on a back yard:

Tomatoes. There are plenty of outdoor variants available now that dont need a green house to produce plenty of good sized, good flavoured fruits.. All you need is a large pot to plant your seed and provide a tall cane for the plant to climb. A tomato is a vine dont forget, so it needs something to cling to. Give it plenty of water and a bit of organic fertilizer once the flowers appear and you are on your way. You can even wrap it with a sheet of polythene to create a greenhouse effect. It will love you for that and give you a better crop. Nip out the top of the plant at about six feet and also nip out the little side shoots that will appear at the joints of the branches. This will force all of the nourishment into the fruits rather than growing new side shoots. You can start your new plants off indoors in February and plant them out once there is no chance of frost. There are also training varieties that you can put in hanging baskets. When in fruit they look good as well as taste good.

Potatoes are the next good croppers for you to grow. We found that after a week or so, the bottom of a bag of potatoes contained at least half a dozen tubers that were starting to go to seed. Little green shoots appear with tiny furry roots probing out looking for water. This is exactly what you want and should not throw them away. Collect them and every two weeks set a new bucket away containing the seed potatoes. Put about an inch of peat or loamy soil in the bottom of the container. If you live in a rural area, you will have a goldmine of organic fertilizer available to you need I say more! A covering of this valuable organic fertilizer either cows or horses will ensure that the seed potato has plenty of food to get it going. Cover the fertilizer with another inch of peat or loam. Water well and set aside for a few weeks. Once the green shoots start to poke their way out of the soil, apply another couple of inches of soil. The new potatoes grow from nodes off the main stem, so the longer you force the stem to grow, the more potatoes you well get. It takes about 4 months from seeding to cropping. Depending on the space available to you, if you plant a new container every two weeks, after your four-month initial period, you will have a weekly supply of potatoes absolutely free of charge.

Onions are another good choice for container growing. Standard onions, spring onions, Paris onions, chives and shallots are all good choices for container growing. Onions need plenty of water and a regular supply to prevent them from bolting. All of the onions can be sown quite thickly and as they grow, thin them out and use the thinnings in salads, soups and seasonings. You will be surprised at how quick onions grow.

Carrots are the next to look closely at. There are dozens of varieties available. If you have a deep container filled with soft peat with no stones in it, then the long varieties will produce a beautiful thick fully formed carrot about six inches long. It is the stones in soil that cause the deformities in carrots that make it look like a two legged creature. Soft, stone-less soil is the answer to long smooth exhibition quality carrots. You can also obtain short stubby carrots, which are ideal for container growing and are full of flavour. You can grow parsnips this way after the carrots have cropped and let the overwinter for spring cropping. The choice is yours. Stagger planting periods over three to four weeks to give you a continuous supply throughout the summer, One packet of seed will provide you with months of fresh carrots all through the summer and autumn.

Salads lettuce comes in dozens of varieties and is very quick growing. A couple of packets of mixed lettuce seed will give you fresh salad greens right through the summer period. Three containers are all you need. Start one off in a April, one in May and another in June and you will have fresh salads all summer. Just take the outer leaves from the young plants and the plant will continue to produce new leaves for you. If you cannot get a packet of mixed lettuce, buy about four different varieties and mix all the seed together. That will ensure that each of your containers will produce a few varieties to choose from.

Herbs are ideally suited for container growing. All the popular varieties are very hardy and will grow almost anywhere. They also make very pretty green plants for display and fragrance. We grow rosemary, sage, parsley, lemon thyme, coriander, mint, lavender, and even ginger in containers. You will not be able to grow ginger in a country like the UK. We had great success this year because we had temperature in the 40s+ in august. However, all the other herbs are easily grown all over Europe and the USA. Visit our herbs page for more advice on individual herbs

There are many other vegetables that can be grown on the container system; all depending on the space you have available to you. Beetroot, celery, turnips and parsnips can all be grown in containers but they all have different maturity periods and your planting times are more difficult to work out to give you regular supply. Nevertheless, it can be done with patience and practice.

Bill & Sheila’s Cookbook
Visit Budget Cooking
Visit Grow your Own fruit & veg