Holidays in March

St. Patrick’s Day is, by far, the most well-known holiday in March, but, just like every other month, March has quite a few lesser known interesting holidays. From celebrating fair foods to extraterrestrials, it turns out March is more interesting than at first glance. Here are a few interesting holidays in March from us here at Gateway Easy Auto Credit Help.

March 17th

March 17th is a day when most celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with drinking, parades, and a night life that seems to never end. As it turns out, it’s also unofficially Submarine Day. The holiday commemorates when John Philip Holland showed one of the first submarine designs to the Navy. Just two years later, the United States Navy officially established the Submarine Force, an event celebrated on April 17th.

March 19th

National Corndog Day is celebrated on March 19th this year to help kick off Mad March. With origins reaching back to 1992, the first celebration featured just corndogs and basketball. Today, it includes tater tots and has spread across the country.

March 20th

Perhaps most interesting of all, some people celebrate Extraterrestrial Abductions Day on March 20th. The holiday’s origins are fairly young, starting in 2008 at an Alien Abduction Day festival in Toronto. Celebrations largely consistent of watching movies about aliens and watching the skies in hope of spotting alien life.

Cheap Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day is a celebration of Irish culture, but it can get pretty expensive rather quickly. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to celebrate on a budget. Here are a few cheap ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day recommended by us here at Gateway Easy Auto Credit Help!

Attend a Parade

Many major cities, and even some small towns, hold a parade in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day. Some have even become famous and televised. Finding affordable fun and entertainment for families can be as simple as attending a parade. Best of all, they’re free!

Make Traditional Irish Foods

Going out to eat to a bar or pub is how many people choose to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Those on a budget can bring Irish culture to their home by making traditional Irish foods instead. Several inexpensive recipes for Irish foods, such as Irish soda bread, can be found online. Many are fairly straightforward. An Irish breakfast, for example, consists of toast, tea, roasted tomatoes, eggs, and sausage.

Go Green (Literally)

Use green fabric to give your own personal style a touch of St. Patrick’s Day. Add a shamrock to your clothes. Use green food coloring to make a meal that fits the theme of St. Patrick’s Day. The choice is yours!

Buick Announces Upcoming Buick Enclave Reveal

Buick Enclave Reveal | St. Louis, MOAs it turns out, Buick’s Avista Concept – which showed up on Detroit stages at the North American International Auto Show last year – is a tough act to follow. The brand didn’t even bother, keeping relatively quiet throughout the fanfare of the Detroit auto show’s usual exciting reveals and previews. However, Buick representatives did tide fans of the brand over with some news; the Buick Enclave reveal is coming soon, so sit tight.

According to the Buick reps who made an appearance in Detroit, the new Enclave will be showing up in dealer showrooms across the country before the end of 2017. This next-generation model will be built in General Motors’ Lansing, Michigan plant alongside the Chevy Traverse and an all-new full-size crossover from Cadillac. Though info on the Buick Enclave is scarce at the moment, experts are looking to the 2018 Traverse for what to expect – including features like Apple CarPlay, a more spacious interior, and more trim levels.

Other features expected to be unveiled in the Buick Enclave reveal are a variety of brand new engine options, a nine-speed automatic transmission, and the ability for consumers to opt for either front- or all-wheel drive. There will likely also be more available technology features for drivers to choose from for their entertainment and convenience.

Unique Valentine’s Day Date Night Ideas

Unique Valentine's Day Date Night Ideas | St. Louis, MOThe typical Valentine’s Day date usually involves a fancy dinner and sometimes a movie. However, if you’re looking for something a little more exciting, these date night ideas could spice up your love life.

Weekend Getaway in the Mountains: Okay, so it’s a little more pricey than just a night out on the town, but booking an isolated cabin for a weekend all to yourselves is worth it. Snuggle up in front of the fire with some hot cocoa.

Make an Itinerary of Local Attractions: You don’t have to go somewhere else to have a new experience! Check out some local attractions listed on your city’s tourism website and make a day of exploring your hometown.

Go to the Spa: What’s more relaxing than spending the day getting pampered? Get a spa package for two and you’ll be feeling more well-rested and relaxed than ever by the time your dinner date rolls around.

Have a Movie Marathon: With amenities like Netflix, Hulu, Redbox, and Apple TVs, it’s easier than ever just to have a couple movies on hand for the best movie marathon ever. Load up on some old favorites or new titles that piqued your interest for a romantic night in with a bottle of wine.

Go Ice-Skating: Is there anything more romantic than an ice-skating date? Even if one (or both) of you are terrible at it, there’s a certain charm to wobbling around on skates while you hold hands. Afterwards you can head home and warm up in front of the fire.

Any of these date night ideas catch your attention? Good luck planning Valentine’s Day for your sweetie!

Saving Money in the New Year

As 2017 begins, you may be thinking about what you want to accomplish this year. If saving money is on your list, we think that is a great idea. However, saving money in the New Year is easier than it sounds. If you’ve already started your savings quest, but are looking for ways to give your savings account a boost, here are a few tips.

Saving Money in the New Year

  • Save unexpected money. If you get an extra bonus at work or come into some unexpected cash, use the rule of thirds. Put one-third towards your debt, put one-third into savings, and use the last third to pay for something you want now.
  • Ditch your plastic. If you find you don’t have enough willpower to avoid spur-of-the-moment purchases while at the store, switch to paying with cash. Only bring as much as you want to spend that day and leave your cards at home. You’ll only be able to spend a finite amount.
  • Pay for your future. Saving for retirement is something everyone should be doing. Experts recommend putting at least 6% of your income towards retirement. If your company offers a retirement plan program, enroll as soon as you can. They might even offer matching contributions.

What are your favorite ways to save money?

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How to Save Money in 2017

Save Money in 2017

If you have a resolution this year to save money, we’re here to help. Saving money can be a lot harder than it sounds. We’ll share a few tips to help you save money in 2017.

  1. Have a specific goal. Instead of just setting a generic goal, like, “Save money for a new car,” instead it needs to be measurable and achievable. Turn your goal into, “Save $5,000 for a new car.”
  2. Make a budget. In order to save money, you need to stop spending it. Look through your bank transactions for the past few months to see what you’re spending your money on. Then, see where you can make cuts and divert that money into savings.
  3. Save automatically. If you get a regular paycheck ask your payroll department if you can automatically divert a portion of your paycheck into a specific savings account. You could also see if you can do automatic deposits through your bank.
  4. Have an emergency fund. To avoid dipping into your savings, start an emergency fund that is earmarked for actual emergencies, like medical bills, big car repairs, home repairs, etc. Experts recommend to start with at least $1,000.
  5. Reward yourself. As your savings increase, reward yourself when you reach specific milestones, and, of course, when you reach your final goal.

What are your savings goals for 2017?

DIY Christmas Presents

DIY Christmas PresentsChristmas is fast approaching, which means that it’s time to start collecting gifts for everyone. While Christmas shopping can be fun, it can also be a source of stress for many, since the costs can add up quick. Here are some DIY Christmas presents to keep your costs down this holiday season.

Homemade Tote Bag – Make a plain canvas bag more exciting by adding a variety of holiday decorations. Hot glue some sparkles on the side or add a friendly holiday message with fabric paint.

Infused Drinks – Christmas is one of the most festive times of the year, which means that people tend to drink a little more than usual. Create your own flavor-infused drinks and wrap a bow on them to get the holiday season started off right.

Coasters – There’s such a wide variety of styles to make that you can please every type of person with these practical gifts.

Jewelry Box – Everyone needs somewhere to stash their most valuable pieces of jewelry. Consider putting together a decorative box with different sections inside for rings, necklaces, and bracelets.

No matter who you are getting Christmas gifts for, there’s no reason to break the bank. Creating your own gifts is a great way to keep costs down while also adding a personal touch to your gifts.

Fun Christmas Traditions

The Christmas season is the most festive time of the year. It seems like there’s always some sort of activity or party to attend. However, some of the most fun things happen in the home. Here are some fun Christmas traditions that you can continue for many years to come.

Chocolate Advent Calendar – Everyone’s counting down the days until Christmas, so why not have an official countdown? If you have children, they get really excited to be the one to mark down the day and eat the chocolate that hides inside.

Postcards – Another fun tradition is to send out postcards every year. You can take the serious route with just a nice family photo, or you can have some fun with a silly photo. Santa beards for everyone!

Ornament Exchange - Fun Christmas TraditionsOrnament Exchange – This is a great excuse to gather friends, family, and neighbors at your house. You also get a fun new ornament to hang on your tree every year.

Secret Santa – Get all of your best friends together to exchange gifts. They can be as expensive or as cheap as you want and it’s a great way to see how well everyone knows each other.

No matter what you decide to do this holiday season, the important thing is that you spend it with your friends and family.

Tips for Black Friday Shopping

Black Friday Shopping

Thanksgiving is almost immediately followed by Black Friday shopping, which has become an event in and of itself. Get the most with your money by following these easy tips.

Do Your Research Early: Black Friday once took place only one day a year, but now, many retailers will have deals all week long – or even all month long. Check social media pages, catalogs, and various other specials beforehand.

Compare Prices: There are tons of resources online like ShopZilla, PriceGrabber, FatWallet, and more that allow you to price check items that might be cheaper at certain stores.

Use Loyalty or Rewards Programs: If you plan to shop a lot at one location, research that store’s loyalty programs and take advantage of the benefits they give you.

Make a Budget: Black Friday sales, even though the prices are great, are designed to tempt you so you end up buying more than you originally intended. Avoid this sales tactic by making a budget ahead of time.

Check Mobile Apps: Apps like ShopKick and RetailMeNot offer exclusive or hard-to-find coupon codes, and you may also have a few online coupons sitting around in your email. Make sure your phone is fully charged when you take it with you, too.

Ready to go Black Friday shopping now? The world is at your fingertips online, where you can get great deals, compare prices, and find coupons you couldn’t get anywhere else.

Affordable Thanksgiving Meals

Happy Thanksgiving inside an autumn wreath

Want to have a great Thanksgiving, but looking to stay on a budget? These affordable Thanksgiving meals help you impress guests without breaking the bank.

Appetizers

Beer Cheese Dip – Who doesn’t love beer cheese? Dip everything from pretzels to veggies and more in this indulgent sauce.

Parmesan Creamed Spinach – Add a touch of unusual autumn flair to this yummy cracker dip by throwing in just a small bit of pumpkin spice.

Sides

Baked Mashed Potatoes – What would Thanksgiving be without mashed potatoes? Make them extra yummy with breadcrumbs, cream cheese, and bacon.

Green Beans – This Thanksgiving classic gets an upgrade with orange peels that grant it an extra burst of flavor.

Corn Pudding – Stop worrying if your soufflé turns out just right and opt for this yummy corn dish instead. Egg whites add a lighter taste.

Entrees

Herb-Roasted Turkey – Looking for healthier turkey options? With nothing but spices, olive oil, and low-sodium chicken broth on this turkey, it’s a great alternative to indulgent dishes.

Ancho-Scallion Roast Turkey Breast – Mix melted butter with garlic, scallions, and ancho chilis that you then rub all over turkey breast as it roasts.

There are many more affordable Thanksgiving meals that you can make, but these are just a few ideas to jumpstart your creativity for an indulgent but inexpensive meal.