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Us Midwestern Folks Are Living The Good (Cheap?) Life

4 Nov

I always knew that living in the Midwest was cheap, but ever since I started lurking the Personal Finance blogosphere, I’ve realized just how good I have it.

On my post about frugal & healthy food items, several of you commented that you could never find the prices that I listed where YOU live.

So, this got me to thinking…just how good do I have it here in Kansas City?

So I wanna know: how do our expenses compare from coast to coast?

Here are some of my normal fixed expenses along with a few “fun” expenses thrown in for good measure:

  • Rent for 2 bedroom/2 bath 1300 sq. foot apartment: $764/month
  • Gym Membership: $130/year
  • Unleaded Gas: $2.53/gallon
  • 1 Tall Caramel Latte at Starbucks: $3.50
  • Monthly Water & Sewage Bill: ~$30.00
  • 1 Adult Movie Ticket (weekend price): $9.00
  • 1 Adult Movie Ticket (weekday price): $5.00

**READERS: Please leave a comment with YOUR financial stats!  Don’t forget to include the city/region that you live in!  You don’t have to include prices for everything I listed – feel free to pick and choose.

I can’t wait to see how much each of you pay for different things!  I can do a follow-up post with the most expensive and cheapest areas of the country (I’ll be sure to include any readers from other countries, I could never forget you 🙂 ).

UPDATE:  Kansas City folks, feel free to chime in as well!

P.S. What is this called?  I know there’s a name for the price fluctuations across the country…regional inflation?

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Lucky Magazine Is Apparently Not On The Same Budget As Me

12 Mar

lucky-fashion-magazineSometimes the media is so out of touch with reality…

Case in point: this month’s issue of Lucky Magazine.

Does it ever annoy anyone (other than me) when the fashion mags have features about “deal hunting” and the items they list are not even in the same price range that I would consider budget-friendly?

For instance, this month, Lucky is trying to find “preppy, budget-friendly separates that are perfect for a waterfront weekend.”  (Before I get to their budget-friendly separates, let me reiterate the fact that the only separates I consider perfect for a waterfront weekend are a two-piece and a cold drink.)

Here’s just a little sampling of items they think are “budget-friendly”:

  • cotton henley: $40
    • That’s fine and all, but for those who don’t know, a henley is basically a polo without the collar.  And I saw perfectly acceptable henley’s at Old Navy for $10 about a week ago.  Next. Continue reading

Happy Hour At Granfalloon Did Not Win Me Over

11 Mar

Granfallon Bar and Grill Kansas City Country Club Plaza I had yet another work happy hour at the Country Club Plaza last night.  I think I’ve mentioned the Plaza (pronounced “Plahhh-zahh”) in some earlier posts.  It’s a more prestigious area in Kansas City, yet somehow boasts the cheapest happy hours of all.  Tomfooleries happy hour is one of my favs.

Last night, we picked the popular Granfalloon Bar & Grill for the get together (AKA get tipsy and loudly nickname the oddballs in our office.  “Birdwoman” and “Jersey” were a product of last night’s session.).

For starters, our waitress was horrible.  She did not smile once.  Now, I’ve never been a waitress, but I’m pretty sure smiling or acting somewhat friendly are in the job description.

Secondly, the food “special” was a select few of the appetizers for $5.00.  Yes, you read that right.  Note to Granfallon:  That’s a horrible special.

It wasn’t even the full appetizer menu.  The first two appetizers I tried to order weren’t even on the “special”.  I finally decided on “Gator Tators” which is code name for potatoes with their insides scooped out and replaced with melted cheese.  Served with a side of Sour Cream. Continue reading