Shopping For An Engagement Ring? 2 Things You Should Do Before You Hit The Stores


When you are in love, money might seem like no object. To whisk the girl of your dreams off of her feet, you might be ready to whip out your credit card and choose a huge bauble she can brag about to her friends. Unfortunately, harsh realities can set in after your honeymoon is over. Here are two things you should do before you hit those jewelry stores, so that you can save money while impressing your lady:

1: Talk With Your Sweetheart Beforehand

If you are like most guys, you probably assume that your soon-to-be bride would love a giant diamond that weighs down her finger. However, a personal skating rink isn't everyone's cup of tea. Discussing your ring purchase with your girlfriend is one of the most important things to do before you start shopping. Here are a few things that you should bring up:

  • Budgeting Concerns: It might be fun to pretend you have all of the money in the world, but after you share a checking account, your bride might not be too happy about that hefty engagement ring debt. Talk with your future spouse about how much you can realistically afford to spend on a ring. Discuss the stability of your jobs, future expenses, and having children. After you both feel comfortable with a budget, you can shop for a ring confidently.  
  • Taste: Simply put, huge, glitzy rings aren't for everyone. If your wife is super athletic or loves to garden, she might not get that much use out of a giant 3-carat diamond ring. Talk with your girlfriend about which types of rings she likes, and never assume that bigger is better.

Your engagement ring purchase will most likely be the first big decision you and your future spouse make together. Try to keep an open mind and enjoy the experience. 

2: Understand Your Options

Are you having a tough time wrapping your mind around the average $5,200 most people spend on an engagement ring? Although it might seem like a diamond solitaire is your only option, the fact of the matter is that you can achieve the same effect for a fraction of the price. Here are a few options that you should be familiar with before you start shopping so that you can make an educated decision:

  • Moissanite: Wouldn't it be nice if there were a stone that looked like a diamond, only sparklier? Believe it or not, moissanite refracts more light than a diamond, but otherwise looks nearly identical. Moissonite also attracts less grease, so that the stone will look better between cleanings. To top it off, a carat of moissanite starts at about $269, which is a fraction of the near $4,000 that a diamond of a similar size would cost you.  
  • Alternate Gemstone:  Your future wife is special, so why shouldn't her ring be special too? Instead of getting her what every other girl has, consider mixing it up by investigating alternative gemstones. A gorgeous ruby or emerald might look incredible on her hand, and cost much less than a diamond.
  • Composite Diamonds: When you purchase a diamond, large individual stones can cost a fortune. However, you can create the look of one large singular stone by putting several smaller stones together. Composite diamonds are set right next to each other to create a gorgeous look, without the steep price tag.

Remember that if you do decide to go with a pricier diamond, you can always check with jewelers, such as Sol's Jewelry & Loan, to see if they offer special financing. You might be able to take advantage of an interest free loan, so that you can get your bride exactly what she wants. However, researching your stone options together might give your future spouse a better idea of what she wants, without hurting your wallet. 

By choosing the right engagement ring for your lady and your budget, you can kick back and enjoy your last days as a single man, without stressing as much over future financial obligations.   


20 January 2015

Repelling Unwanted Animals in a Rural Area

Most of us who live out in nature are pleased to see little critters scampering around our yards and trails. But part of rural life is the occasional encounter with a creature that isn't so welcome. These intruders may be simply annoying like a raccoon that knocks over a trash can or a wolf loudly yelping to its mate in the middle of the night. Animals like bears and some snakes may even be dangerous. Other creatures we mostly like, such as deer and rabbits, become a lot less cute when they have broken into the garden and are chomping away on our vegetables. Thankfully there are products we can use to encourage those critters to go right back where they came from. This blog will highlight them.