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Frugal Retiring News, Christmas 2017
December 09, 2017

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone… I know that's not politically correct, but I always correct folks that say happy holidays... It's Christmas.

Julie and I have just returned from our transatlantic cruise in November... Had a wonderful time and spent three days in Florence prior to the cruise.

All of our travel was by train... The only way to go in Italy for sure.

You can read about the details in my new page on Florence, or Firenze in Italian.

Not on the page but we stayed at Hotel Collodi...great location and value...frugal Florence

Michelangelo's David, one of the world's greatest sculptures still invokes awe... Every time we have visited the Academia museum.

Imagine if you can, starting off with a ton of marble, and after two years of diligent labor make something so beautiful.

Michelangelo was 26 when he was given this commission... It is 14 feet high and shows David prior to his battle with Goliath... Which incidentally did not end well for that certain famous Philistine.

How can you be so sure this is prior to the encounter?... Well if it was after, Michelangelo would've had shown with the head of Goliath... Guess Michelangelo was being politically correct.

Frugal living tip number one

My entire site, is now as secure to visitors as I can make it... Note the https before the www on all the pages of the green "lock" In the address line of any... Of the now 375... pages on our site.

This is a result of my website managers commitment to keeping their visitors secure.

Not that I ever ask you to enter any personal information on site, it is just an extra level of protection against the online hackers which seems so prevalent today.

Whenever you are entering credit card or other personal information on any site make sure that the URL address begins with https and the lock is visible on the address line.

Some antivirus software will also verify that the site is secure if you allow pop-up windows on your computer.

Speaking of computers both my wife and I are becoming increasingly frustrated with slow computers... And the arrogance of Microsoft by practically forcing you to use the version of Windows that they currently promote.

I can see an Apple computer, refurbished of course due to the high prices of the new models... In my future.

Frugal living tip number two

The subscriber list to this newsletter just topped 3000 a while ago...

If you enjoy reading it and gain some ways to save money... pass along this newsletter to your friends and encourage them to sign up... It's free you know.

Our top visited pages include...

living on a sailboat

number one tip to save money

guide to living cheap

cheap and easy health insurance

Frugal living tip number three

If you haven't noticed on the news that more and more people are shopping online this Christmas season… You should.

Almost all of our shopping is done on Amazon... You save gas... You almost always save money...and you can't beat the return policy.

Returns are getting even more simple with the addition of Amazon return kiosks. I hope your community has one in your neighborhood...the closest one to our house is on the side of a Quick Trip gas station.

Here is how an Amazon return works... You go to orders, request a return... And wait for the email from Amazon.

It will give you a link to print out a return receipt, and ways for you to look up where the nearest return kiosk is located in relation to your house...

You are given a combination of a specific box number in which you place the package to be returned.

That's it... However if you enjoy standing in line at the post office feel free to disregard this advice.

Frugal tip number four

Here's a review of some of things we do to save money when traveling abroad... Use public transportation... The trains in Italy are superb and very cheap with most of their stations, in the major cities, being in the middle of downtown.

Eat your evening meal in your room...There was a grocery store on the corner from the hotel Collodi, and a standup bar/deli right next to it... Between the two, you can buy a bottle of wine, some bread, perhaps some ham and cheese or a sandwich from the deli.

Pick a hotel that offers a breakfast...ours had simple, but fresh food and fruits, cereals and a coffee machine that will give you a buzz that lasts all day.

Remember...We spent three nights in Florence before getting on the 15 day transatlantic cruise where getting enough food is the least of your worries. Our last several trips to Europe have all been in conjunction with a cruise.

Merry Christmas to all

From our house to yours... may you and your loved ones enjoy this wonderful time of family and giving thanks.

God bless you all,

Gary and Julie Pierce

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