Fall Maintenance List

It's getting close to fall and you can almost smell the roasted pumpkin seeds, hot spicy apple cider, and raking leaves, no stop, instead let's have fun jumping in a huge pile of leaves over and over again with the kids. Fall has to be one of my favorite times of the year.  It's also a good time to take a weekend vacation with the kids.  
Once school has been in session for a few weeks, most kid's and adults are ready to hit the open road, even if its to your own back yard to try to escape daily deadlines and the piles of homework every night. Just a weekend away can put things back in perspective and keep you going till the holiday's arrive. I am sure you have been keeping the roads busy this summer going to kid activities, ballgames, vacations and work. It may be time for your car to take a small vacation to the nearby shop. The last thing you want to interfere with a weekend getaway is a car that breaks down a few miles from the house, especially when most of these break downs could have been prevented if we just keep up our car maintenance. 
Fall Auto Maintenance Check list:
1. Be sure to check your oil level and add oil if necessary, or you may need to take your car in for a oil change. 
2. You can test your battery at most auto parts stores, but if it needs to be replaced make sure you take the time to get it taken care of. 
3. Inspect your windshield wipers, bitter cold and ice is just around the corner. Cold weather can be hard on rubber blades. Make sure you have them replaced if needed. 
4. Make sure your windshield wiper reservoir is filled with the proper type of windshield fluid for your climate. 
5. Have your engine coolant checked to see if its low. 
6. Have all your belts and hoses looked at to make sure there isn't evidence of cracking or leaking. 
7. Your car may be due a tuneup. Have someone check spark plugs, wires, distributor cap and rotor. 
8. Make sure your tires are properly inflated, once winter arrives you will need good traction. 
Last of all be sure to have a winter survival kit. Check to make sure all flashlights, jumper cables, flares, ice scrapers, blankets and first aid kits have been updated with new supplies and are in good working order. 
With all that said, it's time to plan that last weekend getaway. You have the car ready for the winter, now it's time to relax. You look out the kitchen window and see hubby has pitched a tent in the backyard, all you need to do now is grab a few blankets, snacks and the kids and sit by a campfire and make a few s'mores and tell ghost stories! It's Friday night, time to kick off your shoes and relax and celebrate the fact your kids didn't bring home any homework!

Author Note: Tammy is the owner and author of the Frugal Southern Mom Blog. Visit her on FacebookPinterest, and Twitter!


Cars for College Students

Best Car's for the College Student 
Don't you love it when the long school year is finally over and summer vacation is about to start? You would instantly feel energized and just knew deep down that this was going to be your best summer yet, but too soon summer ends and regretfully its time to go back to school.  You had to admit it was fun buying school clothes, supplies and getting to see friends again. Yes, going back to school before college was a breeze, just at the time we didn't realize this! 
Getting ready to go to college is definitely a huge expense. No longer is it just purchasing a few supplies and clothes.  Now you need scholarships to help with the expense or a student loan, also will you stay on campus, or will you need a apartment near by?  So many things to think about, but the one thing you knew you would need, would be a reliable car. 
Buying a car can sometimes be too expensive for parents to purchase alone and you may have to chip in on the expense, such as gas and maintenance or possibly payments.  If you buy a new car or used car you will still be under a warranty, but you will be responsible for the daily maintenance and of course you will want one with a great gas mileage, I am sure you will be making a few trips back home from time to time.  
US News and World Report has put out a list of top cars for college students, and one that you may want to consider is the Chrysler 200.
The Chrysler 200 is a car that has top safety ratings. It is a midsize sedan that was redesigned in 2015, and is available with all-wheel drive, which wasn't available as an option in the past. Your college student probably wants a high-tech infotainment system in their new car, and the Chrysler 200's system is known as one of the best in the class. The Chrysler 200's trunk is big for a midsize car, which will come in handy when Junior comes home for the holidays with a trunk full of dirty laundry.
When you are ready to buy a car, make sure you know what you are looking for, is it a midsize, compact or a mini van or maybe a small truck.  Before you go to buy, make sure everyone is in agreement about how much you plan to spend and keep to your budget. Also car insurance can be high at this age, be sure to check this out before you buy, the last thing you want is to find a car that meets your budget, but the car insurance is more than the payment itself.  Also one more thing to take in consideration is, " Do you know how big your parking space will be"? 
Going away to college for the first time can be fun, scary and can even make you a bit nervous, but knowing you have reliable transportation to depend on, can make your parents life less stressful and plus its just one more thing off their list they don't have to worry about!

Author Note: Tammy is the owner and author of the Frugal Southern Mom Blog. Visit her on FacebookPinterest, and Twitter!


John strapped his receiver tightly on his upper arm. He was ready to finish this game and finally claim victory. The sun had set...