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Five-Star Living on a Two-Star Budget: Living Big on Only a Little [Paperback]

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Item Number 25359  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   192
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.3" Width: 5.4" Height: 0.7"
Weight:   0.45 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 31, 2006
Publisher   Harvest House Publishers
ISBN  0736916776  
EAN  9780736916776  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
SUBTITLE: Living Big On Only A Little
Readers will find ways to obtain five-star travel, entertainment, dining, and educational experiences while staying within a two-star budget. They'll discover three basic rules for saving money on flights, eating out, big-ticket items, and family activities.

Community Description
Are you a Prada gal wearing Payless shoes? Discover the "Live it! Give it!" principles! Feinberg and Gillespie divulge their shopping secrets, including money-saving tricks on buying big-ticket items, how to enjoy travel and fine dining at a fraction of the cost, and much more! Features quick facts, eye-catching tips, and website listings.
Please Note, Community Descriptions and notes are submitted by our shoppers, and are not guaranteed for accuracy.

Buy Five-Star Living on a Two-Star Budget: Living Big on Only a Little by Margaret Feinberg & Natalie Nichols Gillespie from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9780736916776 & 0736916776

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More About Margaret Feinberg & Natalie Nichols Gillespie

Margaret Feinberg

Margaret Feinberg is a popular Bible teacher and speaker at churches and leading conferences such as Catalyst, Thrive, and Women of Joy. She was recently named one of 50 women most shaping culture and the church today by Christianity Today. Her books, including The Organic God, The Sacred Echo, and Scouting the Divine sold nearly a million copies. Margaret lives in Morrison, Colorado, with her husband, Leif, and their super pup, Hershey.

Margaret Feinberg currently resides in the state of Colorado. Margaret Feinberg was born in 1974.

Margaret Feinberg has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Pursuing God
  2. Women of Faith (Thomas Nelson)
  3. Women of Faith Study Guides

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Business & Investing > Marketing & Sales > Consumerism   [350  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Business & Investing > Personal Finance > Budgeting   [618  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Unfortunately didn't feature many tips that were new to me  Oct 12, 2006
I enjoyed reading this book. It is written in a chatty and accessible manner, and featured a philosophy of giving and sharing, and taking pleasure and finding value from the small things in life.

Unfortunately, while I enjoyed this book a lot, I didn't really find any new tips that I was excited about putting into action. Maybe my bargain-hunter Mom was enough of a good example for me that I learned these things early, or maybe these tips are merely intuitive enough that most people could think of them when they sat down and thought about ways of living better on less. It is hard to say.

Then, I felt like the areas where they gave tips on cutting costs or finding deals were far outweighed by the amount of space they gave to talking about the philosophies they wanted to share, the different businesses and commercial websites that they find helpful, and the general tips on how to do things that are unrelated to saving money or finding better deals on luxury items.

For example, when talking about how to book a hotel on the cheap, they give a page and a half of additional tips on how to book a hotel, ranging from warning you to get a hotel in a location convenient to where you will want to go (who wouldn't think to consider location?), to finding out whether hotels offer high-speed internet access (if you need it, wouldn't you think to ask?), and telling us the difference between suites where you have more space and amenities and rooms where you have less space and fewer amenities. They go through the same routine of reminding us of basic considerations (often not involving money) in nearly every section of the book.

It almost felt like they wanted to cram all of their knowledge and helpfulness into one book, regardless of whether that was necessary or appropriate. I know when I am reading about a specific topic, I don't usually want a whole lot of unrelated info mixed in. Another example of this is in the beauty section, where they have the following Five-Star Fact:

"Has your all-time favorite lipstick been discontinued? Have no fear. It's Three Custom Color Specialists to the rescue! The New-York City based company has a list of the secret mixes of more than 7500 different lipstick colors and can recreate your favorite. You simply slip a small slice of your old color into a small bag and mail it to the company. For $50 they'll create two new tubes of your favorite color. The company can also recreate other types of makeup. It's pricey, but when it's your all-time favorite, it's worth it."

In the above quote, I not only felt advertised to, but also felt like since they weren't showing us how to get a better deal on this service and were not showing us how to get a better deal on makeup in that blurb, it simply wasn't relevant.

Then in the travelling section, they advise,"If you find yourself faced with a long layover due to a bump or because of an airline traffic delay, don't let it get you down. Instead of feeling frustrated, count the downtime as extra time to relax with a book you have been wanting to read, visit with an old friend you have been meaning to call, or if the layover is really long, hop in a cab or rent a car for a few hours (a one day rental can sometimes cost less than $15) and drive around the city. Make the most of every moment. That's Five-Star Living!"

I personally didn't think that the information presented there was groundbreaking enough to be shared. When faced with a layover, I don't think I am going to look back to my five-star living gurus and wonder to myself what I should do in this situation.

Overall, this was a chatty and pleasant read, but I didn't find any new tips for me personally to use, and the amount of filler text made it frustrating at times. Five-Star Living to me means cutting the fluff from my life and truly getting the most enjoyment and benefit out of everything I do (and read), and I didn't feel that this book delivered on its promise to help me do that.
Helpful tips!  Feb 24, 2006
Everybody loves a deal--whether you are living on a modest income or a six-figure one.

In Five-Star Living on a Two-Star Budget, co-authors and self-proclaimed bargain hunters Margaret Feinberg and Natalie Nichols Gillespie, offer readers a practical reference tool for discounts on everything from fashion and groceries to little-known travel getaways and home purchases.

With thoughtful planning and research, these two women empower all of us to learn how to free up our hard-earned dollars to enjoy life more fully and make a bigger contribution to the world.

The authors suggest that those who experience true Five-Star Living have joy in their lives, feel satisfaction with their circumstances and are more willing to share their fortune with others. They have dubbed the Live It! Give It! Principle: God gave you everything you have, so it really belongs to him. You honor him when you manage well what he has given you (Live It!). He blesses you when you share what he has given you with others in need (Give It!).

While a noble notion to be sure, I had to overcome the religious overtones to benefit from the many freebies, discounts, rebates and negotiating strategies provided. The religious reference did not seem relevant to the Live It! Give It! Principle or Five-Star Living.

Five-Star Living invites you to elevate your living standard no matter what your income level. They start out with basic ideas for getting your finances in order, debt under control, saving for the future, taxes in order and giving to others.

The next seven chapters provide specific ideas for saving on beauty and fashion, great ideas for parents, gourmet groceries and dining, entertainment, traveling, high-tech and big-ticket items. With the expanding availability of on-line research, a constant eye for good deals and plenty of legwork to uncover savings opportunities, the diligent consumer can enjoy great restaurants, fine hotels and the activities you love while staying within your budget.

As I read through this simple missal, I reflected how practical and helpful these tips are and wondered who I could pass the book to next. But then again, I think I just might keep it myself to jumpstart my own Five-Star Living experience!

Armchair Interviews says: Who doesn't love helpful tips that are both practical and affordable.

Four stars for "Five-Stars"  Feb 20, 2006
As family budgets feel the pinch of increasing fuel prices and job market turbulence, living within your means is becoming increasingly difficult. So difficult in fact, that most Americans actually find themselves living far beyond their resources as they struggle to "keep up with the Joneses." As a result many people reach a point where they see no other alternative but to either succumb to even more credit card debt, or make drastic sacrifices in regard to lifestyle.

Five-Star Living on a Two-Star Budget offers a sensible alternative to these two bleak options. One that says you can have your cake and eat it too. And all within your current budget! Everything from great vacations, to designer clothing, gourmet dining to the latest technology - this book teaches you how to "live big on only a little."

Combining the fiscal intuitiveness of a mother of six with the pop-culture savvy of a "young married," Nichols Gillespie and Feinberg literally offer hundreds of suggestions on ways to cut corners in your budget without sacrificing your lifestyle. By teaching their "Live It! Give It!" philosophy they also provide balanced teaching on the joys of giving to others while enjoying many of the finer things in life for yourself.

Don't think this book is nothing more than a list of ways to "do it on the cheap." It's much more than that. The authors not only offer a multitude of suggestions on ways to get the most "bang for your buck," they also provide a unique perspective and philosophy of personal finance that is both creative and practical. The book even offers some sound advice on creating a budget and getting out of debt in order to increase your potential for living a "Five-Star" lifestyle.

At the end of each chapter there are "Action Points," which give useful suggestions for putting what you've just leaned into action. Buying a new computer? You might just want to seriously consider purchasing that extended warranty. Have a favorite place where you get your hair done that's a little pricey? Why not keep going there and cut back in other areas that are not as "essential?"

The bottom line is - you don't have to go without all of life's pleasures just because you don't earn a six-figure salary. By following some sound financial advice and doing a little homework you can truly enjoy a modest lifestyle on a miniscule budget. And probably still have some money left over to bless others along the way. (Courtesy of ShaneBertou_com)
Does not feature Christian teachings directly--but fun to read  Feb 14, 2006
Okay, the first thing you have to understand about Margaret Feinberg and Natalie Nichols Gillespie, authors of Five-Star Living On A Two-Star Budget, is that they are delightful gals, but totally whacked out. But, oh, do they know how to live! And if you have the zany approach to life that they do, you just may be able to save a bundle of cash, own a lot more items, and travel a lot more places. But it's not for the faint of heart.

In this book you'll read about how one of the authors filled her entire garage with cases of 7-Up, costing her hundreds upon hundreds of dollars, just so that she might get enough UPC symbols to win a trip from Florida to California to be a guest at an awards show. And, believe it or not, she won -- flight, hotel, the works! Another time, one of the authors and her husband arrived early at an airport and kept signing up to be bumped voluntarily from flights. They spent two days at the airport, but wound up with more than $8,000 of free flight vouchers for travel anywhere in America. (Like I said, these women are wacky!)

Besides the crazy stunts they have pulled off, they also have some less daring suggestions for folks looking for good deals. They begin their book by wisely talking about reducing debt, establishing a budget, using coupons, finding the best sales, judging products, and discovering unusual bargains. They later provide websites for locating special deals on travel, lodging, movie tickets, hard to find foods and clothing items, and stage play reservations. They give hints on how to deal with car salesmen, furniture stores and other big ticket selling venues. They show how to entertain at home cheaply with crafts, rental items, and bulk buying.

Although the book does not feature Christian teachings in a direct manner, the authors are consistent in their focus on charitable giving, service to others, and sharing of prosperity. They are against hoarding and, instead, talk about the joy of giving away to others out of the abundance that careful planning and budgeting bring to students of their plans and systems.

There are good lessons here, and there are also some wildly entertaining tales of attempting stunts to win big prizes. The writing is easy to understand, the advice is pragmatic and functional, and the humor of the book makes it fun to read. -- Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, Christian Book

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