Archive for October, 2008

PUMP PRICES PLUMMET
October 23, 2008

Let’s try to find the silver lining of a weakening economy.  Perhaps it means more people are going to church.  I don’t know, but for my consumer blog it means lesser demand leading to lower gas prices which might benefit you at least in the short term.  In case you haven’t noticed because you try to drive and visit the pumps as little as possible these days, this afternoon AAA is reporting the national average for a gallon of regular unleaded is $2.82.  In July it was $4.11. 

To find the lowest gas prices in your area, here are helpful tool:

AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report

MACY’S RETURNS TO NOLA AREA
October 22, 2008

I had a sneak peak at the new Lakeside Macy’s today, and it’s a little more advanced than what I remember the last time the department store was in NOLA.  Try flat screen TVs in the fitting room area, and “E-Stop” electronics purchases (basically ipods and digital cameras purchased from a vending machine).

Then – how about Martha Stewart, Emeril Lagasse, Tommy Hilfiger (just to name a few) visiting town to celebrate the department store giant’s return to NOLA.  Many of you want to know “Why are there 2 Macy’s in Jefferson Parish?” As the current status of the “New Orleans Centre” in Orleans Parish remains in limbo, Mayor Ray Nagin’s office hasn’t gotten back to me about what’s to come of that former Macy’s home, and Macy’s calls it “unfortunate” they couldn’t reopen that location in Orleans Parish.

But now to the fun stuff… including a big celeb fest Friday night to benefit my alma mater NOCCA (New Orleans Center for Creative Arts). Martha Steward, Emeril Lagasse, Tommy Hilfiger, Irma Thomas are just some of the celebs who will be making special appearances Friday-Sunday at Macy’s Lakeside and Esplanade.

Wednesday, October 22: CHARITY SHOPPING DAY–  It’s not too late to get a ticket for $5 to benefit your favorite charity and get a good deal.  You can buy tickets at the door, your $5 goes to a charity of your choice, and you receive an extra 25% off apparel and accessories and 10% off home items.  Some of the clothes I saw today were already 25%-50% off.

Thursday, October 23: MACY’S PASSPORT FASHION CINEMA: 7 p.m. Champagne Rception and 8 p.m. show at Clearview Palace 12. Fashion, music and dance benefiting NO/AIDS Task Force. Tickets can be purchased at www.macys.com/passport or by calling NO/AIDS Task Force at 504-821-2601, x228.

Friday, October 24: MACY’S COCKTAIL GALA BENEFITIG THE NOCCA INSTITUTE: 6:30 pm VIP Megastar Reception and 7pm Superstar Cocktail Gala, Macy’s Lakeside Shopping Center. Mingle with Marthatewart, Emeril Lagasse, Tommy Hilfiger, Russell Simmons, Clinton Kelly, Steve Madden, Chef Tyler Floence, Chef Cat Cora, Chef Dave Lieberman, Gavin DeGraw, Irma homas, Neso Torres, Sunny Leigh and more. Tickets can be purchased by calling 504-940-2900 or by visiting www.nocca.com.

Saturday, October 25:

Lakeside: 9:45 am- Ribbon Cutting, marching band, Happy 150 years Macy’s, first 150 customers to walk the red carpet through the doors receive $15 in Macy’s birthday bucks good for the day anywhere in the store.

  • 11a.m.- Martha Stewart’s Cooking School book Signing (meet Martha Stwart)
  • 1 p.m. Steve Madden Personal Appearance, Shoe Diva Event- hors d’oeuvres, beverages, music, shoe sales cosmetics events
  • 2 p.m. Chef Tyler Florence gourmet tasting, Shop with designer Sunny Leigh, Mindy Lam Jewelry Trunk Show
  • 3 p.m. Jones New York Fall Fashion Peview
  • 4 p.m. Clinton Kelly Shopping Party Clindotn Kelly – co-host of TLC’s “What Not To Wear”)
  • 6 p.m. – Rock Out with Tommy Hilfiger and Gavin Deraw

Esplanade: 9:45 am- Ribbon Cutting, marching band, Happy 150 years Macy’s, first 150 customers to walk the red carpet through the doors receive $15 in Macy’s birthday bucks good for the day anywhere in the store.

  • 10 a.m.- Youngblood Timepieces Event, Nubian Heritage Cosmetics Meet the Founders Event
  • NOON- Irma Thomas Personal Appearance and performance, Introducing Skoodlez characters for reading and writing activities
  • 1p.m.- I.N.C. Fashion Show
  • 2 p.m. -Cubavera presents Nestor Torres
  • 3 p.m.-  Macy’s Culinary Council Chef Event with Chef Cat Cora
  •  4 p.m. – Russell Simmons Personal Appearance

Sunday, October 26:

Lakeside:

  • 11 a.m.- Shop wiht Designer Lisa Milward for BLEU, Nuban Heritage Cosmetics Meet the Founders Event, Himistry Cosmetics Meet the Founders Event
  • 1 p.m. – Irma Thomas Personal Appearance
  • 2 p.m.- Calvin Klein Fashion Workshop
  • 3 p.m. – Jones New York Fall Fashion Preview

Esplanade:

  • 10 a.m. – Youngblood Timepieces Event, Hauteface Cosmetics Meet the Founders Event
  • 2 p.m.- Macy’s Culinary Council Chef Event with Chef Dave Lieberman, Calvin Klein Fashion Workshop
  • 3 p.m.- Jones New York Fall Fashion Preview, Shop with Designer Lisa Milward for BLEU

Retail Bad, NOLA Airport Ranked, Credit Tips
October 15, 2008

The commerce department is reporting September was the worst month for retail sales in two years.  Sales slipped one-point-two percent last month. That’s almost double what experts were expecting. a big portion of that… a three-point-eight percent decrease in auto sales. Consumer spending is two-thirds of the country’s economic activity. 

A new survey ranks Armstrong International Airport  the third fastest growing airport in the United States.  The  aviation forecast report by the Boyd Group International analyzed 147 airports focusing on population and economic factors among others.  The report studied three airport categories. Armstrong International was in the ‘large non-hubsite’ category.   

 

 

HOW IS YOUR CREDIT SCORE?

And finally –  on average, Americans now have more than 9 credit cards each… is all the plastic helping or hurting your credit score?
Check out these tips from bankrate.com to boost and understand your credit score

Children with Disabilities, Less Expensive Flights & Elmo!
October 13, 2008

You have to see this ELMO thing, but first a couple of orders of business from today’s consumer reports:

SPECIAL NEEDS: If you are a parent of a child with special needs, financial experts say they can help you and are focusing more on special needs.   Check links below for more information:

Financial Planning Tips for Parents of Children With Disabilities  (from U.S. News and World Report)
MetDESK® (Metlife’s Division of Estate Planning for Special Kids)

For more information on Social Security Administration benefits for children with disabilities click here

AIR NAVIGATION: How about all the extra costs in airfare lately?  We’re wondering if a new navigation system (that is supposed to save millions on travel expenses) will pave the way for less expensive flights for consumers.  Officials are hesistant to say, but here are the facts:

PASSENGER AND PUBLIC BENEFITS of Next Generational Air Transportation System (NextGen) :

(According to FAA)
• Reduces congestion and alleviates delays: NextGen will accommodate two to three times current traffic levels through satellite-based air traffic management.
• Reduces travel time: NextGen technologies like ADS-B will give pilots and controllers more detailed information, allowing flights to go from point to point, all while maintaining the highest levels of safety.
• Reduces emissions and noise: Area Navigation (RNAV) arrival and departure procedures at Atlanta are already saving airlines $34 million in fuel costs.  RNAV will continue to reduce noise, emissions and fuel usage as it expands across the nation.
• Improves water quality: A new environmental demonstration program will fund de-icing and anti-icing technologies that will facilitate safer and more efficient use of the system.

ADS-B is touted as the future of air traffic control, but what is it?
Instead of using radar to keep aircraft safely separated, satellite signals will provide pilots and air traffic controllers with much more accurate information.  This information will enable pilots to choose more efficient, direct routes.

Maybe at most we’ll get free peanuts and pillows again….

AND NOW… We can’t forget ELMO:  a New elmo makes his debut tomorrow, and you have to check out this preview on YouTube, click Elmo below to see this video that I believe to be hilarious!

 If you can put up the $60 bucks you will spoil your child with this guy.