“It was the best of times, and it was the worst of times”… as the saying goes. July fit this description quite accurately. Much of July was a very good month, but we had to deal with some costly equipment failures and a health scare. It was a difficult month for my mental health…Read more
Have you ever had a long string of bad luck, completely out of your control? A whole series of bad events, seemingly unconnected to anything you’ve done that suddenly all lands in your lap at roughly the same time?
A whole bunch of these bad things just happen, and there’s very little you could have done or said to avoid this fate…Read more
Summer is the busy season around the Tako household. While most of the world is undergoing some form of shutdown because of the pandemic (including our family), we’re still finding a myriad of ways to keep busy.
So much so, that I hardly have time for blogging. I wish I still had the time to crank out a two blog posts per week, but alas, my time is now very limited…Read more
Like most people, you’ve probably found yourself cooking AND eating at home a lot more in 2020. As a result you’ve probably seen some very significant savings in your monthly budget this year.
You’re certainly not alone – The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis recorded a national savings rate of 32.2% in April and 23.3% in May. This is the most recently released data from the BEA. Those two months in 2020 are the highest savings rates ever recorded in the United States! No period in history even comes close (at least since the Bureau of Economic Analysis started keeping track).Read more
As a perpetual student of the stock market, I’m always keeping tabs on what’s moving and shaking in the world of finance. Lately it’s been a group of stocks I call the “COVID-proof” stocks — Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Tesla, Zoom, Microsoft, and Google, that are doing most of the moving and shaking. (Meanwhile, the S&P 500 is almost flat for the year — down a mere 1.4%)
All of these stocks have seen incredible price gains since the market lows of mid-March…Read more
June was an exceptionally good month. Life was good. Really good in fact! Our financials held-up well (all things considered) during the pandemic, and the kids finally finished school in June. Which means we have the resources and time for some family adventure!
In Washington State (where we live), our “stay-at-home order” has finally ended. Things are definitely not “back to normal”, but we can at least get out of the house a bit more…Read more
Argh! Believe it or not this is the second time I’m writing this post. I was just about ready to publish the first (original) version last Friday, but upon hitting the ‘publish’ button, the post disappeared into a puff of digital smoke.
Damn! Hours and hours of writing completely gone due to some strange technological fart.
But my little blogging mishap is a very very small problem compared to the incredible difficulties many people are living through at this very moment. It’s been a very difficult year.Read more
Imagine for a moment that you’re stuck at home. There’s no sports, no concerts, no festivals, no new movies, and the federal government (in all its infinite wisdom) has decided to write you a check! Woohoo! Free money!
But what could you do possibly do with that money? Assuming you’re one of the lucky folks that still has a job, you might elect to spend that money on consumer goods…Read more
Travel. Ask any random person if they like to travel, and undoubtedly most will say “Oh yes, absolutely!!”. Then after some careful thought, they’ll hedge that claim with “…but I probably won’t do a lot of traveling right now”.
Travel used to be a pretty big chunk of the average consumer’s budget. Now, with quarantine periods for international travelers and “stay home” orders in-place, most families are simply sticking to home…Read more