Monday, January 26, 2015

Dear @thenewcheap.....

My girlfriends and I would love to plan a weekend getaway. None of us have ever been wine tasting and would like to try it. We want to get out of Augusta, but don't want to end up somewhere that's for couples. We each have about 200 we can spend and that has to include the hotel!
Pleeeeeease can you help us out?!

Mommy’s who need to get out.

 Dear Mom in need of a break,

A weekend centered around wine tasting is a great idea for moms! A $200 budget is more than enough for a great weekend! Here’s the plan. I fully understand that a vacation doesn’t truly feel like a vacation if you don’t leave your area. So, it’s important to get away from Augusta so that you can relax. We must also keep in mind that in the event that something happens with the children, a mom would need to get home quickly. I would scan a 2 hour radius from home for a small winery. Why a small relatively unknown winery? You mentioned that no one in the group has been to a wine tasting, so it’s better to start small. Once you’ve been to a couple of wine tastings and know if you enjoy the event, then maybe splurge on a nicer one. Because let’s be honest, I could give you ladies wine out of the garage, and as long as you don’t hear a child cry for an hour it would be a great time spent by all. Wineries are usually nested in bubbling areas to provide for visitors to the winery. Find a hotel, with a large suite style room. I grew up in a house full of women and I know that when women are getting dressed, it is a team event. So, there’s no need to make your group run franticly up and down the hall for contouring tools (I mentioned a make-up technique, I deserve a 1000 points). Another benefit of having a suite style room is the number of people that can fit into these rooms comfortably. Pack snacks, and I’m not talking goldfish or fruit snacks! While the ladies are getting ready, you’re going to want to snack on something. Each lady should bring a snack for the group that everyone can share while getting dressed. 
One of the benefits of this weekend is that you don’t have someone kicking you in your back all night, so while we want to save money, don’t over cram people into the room. If someone is short on cash in the group, bring an air mattress. Because once the attempt to navigate the club scene fails (you’ve been out of the game to long, and  plus you have cheerio’s in your purse!) you’ll end up in the room watching movies with everyone is falling asleep where they can. Make sure you select a hotel that serves breakfast, this will cut down on food and travel cost! 
Travel...there are so many taxi services available for you ladies to travel with.  Share the cost of travel and keep it to a minimum.
Shopping: I’m a realist, you’re not going to get this many women together and there not be gossip and shopping! Set aside the money that you want to shop with, and spend only that. Spend that money on only yourself! This weekend is for you, so no need to feel like you have to get something for everyone back home. The present that they will receive is a happy refreshed mom upon her return. They will be alright if you don’t bring them back something, and let’s be honest, when’s the last time you bought something for yourself? Some extra tips; choose a hotel that has a loyalty/rewards program and join it. After your stay, you’ll receive the reward points for future travel that can be used on the next “Mommy weekend”. Encourage everyone to bring their favorite wine to share while getting ready. Wine tasting is just that, a small tasting! So, it’s important to get your wine fill before and/or afterwards. Research the restaurants in the area prior to your trip to see who offers the best deals/specials for your party size. Most importantly, enjoy yourselves and get some much needed and well deserved R&R!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Cooking with @TheNewCheap- Chicken Tortilla Soup

Alexus Nance is a chef, who received her training from Johnson & Wales - Charlotte . During her time in college, she got the opportunity to experiment with mixing the new knowledge she was obtaining and her limited budget as a college student.  Alexus will bringing those lessons learned to the New Cheap.  If you're looking to make great meals, while stretching your money: keep an eye out for these recipes by Alexus!

 Chicken Tortilla Soup

2 large chicken breast, large dice

1 ½ cup rice, white

whole onion, diced

chicken stock (32 oz whole container) (Swanson brand)

taco powder (2 mild packets)

frozen corn, whole bag

minced garlic, 1 tablespoon

1 can of Rotel (red and green chilli)




sour cream

shredded sharp cheddar cheese


A lemon

1. Marinate diced chicken in lemon juice and 1 pack of taco powder for 1 hour

2. Saute chicken in a little bit of oil (do in a soup pot)
or a pan thats big enough to hold all the ingredients

3.Add the onion and garlic to the chicken cook until both are   slightly browned.

4 Add the chicken stock and water ( as desired, depends on how soupy you want it to be or just enough water to cover the rice)

5. add the rice and corn, cook until the rice is almost done

6. Add the rotel, season with taco powder & cumin ( to taste)

7. Add toppings, squeeze lemon into soup

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Fashion for the New Cheap By Briana Young

Men, I've got to tell you... 2015 it's time to start stepping out of your comfort zone, and moving into the spotlight. Before you start adding up potential cost for the spotlight, know that I'm definitely a "New Cheap-er". I know there is a way to get the look you've always wanted to but for far less than you thought you'd have to pay!

Personally, I LOVE to save and look good while doing it! So, when I talk with male clients about their fears of upgrading their wardrobe and I hear cost being one of the major setbacks, it upsets me a great deal! In an effort to give others a glimpse at dressing for this “New Cheap” lifestyle, I will be posting outfit combinations that will literally shock you for how NEW Cheap they are! I've been styling for a long time. I think the biggest problem men have is not stepping out of their comfort zone to find great pieces that fit their budget. Stay tuned on The New Cheap to stay up to date with the latest trends, at reasonable prices!

Every man needs a dark denim button up, grey chinos, and great accessories to match! Your pockets will love you, and the ladies will too! Check the links below to check out these items! Dress in style for less than $55!

Don't forget to tag us in your pics, and show us how you styled this look!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


This past weekend I got the chance to fly out to Tucson Arizona for a weekend of relaxing and catching up with friends. Ten years ago I was a college freshman who used Tucson as one of my playgrounds, as my college was in a neighboring town. Getting the chance to spend a weekend reminiscing was amazing. This amazing weekend cost me next to nothing for how much fun I had. Starting off with travel to the airport, I was able to search and find park and fly deals offered prior to my trip. This way, I didn't have to pay or bother someone with taking me to the airport. The price to leave my car was about $4 a day which is far less expensive than a cab. This also allowed me to leave and arrive at any time without being constricted by someone else’s availability. Once I got into Arizona, I was picked up by a friend and taken directly to IN and OUT! This is my favorite fast food restaurant, so I was excited!  In and out is pretty cheap for the quality food they offer, so this wasn't a major expense!  And it was only for ONE meal, didnt eat there everyday!
For the majority of the trip, I stayed with friends. This was important, because hotel costs can get very expensive. Typically when you are in a different city, you'll want to try to local food. That is definitely what I did  this trip.  BUT you must also challenge yourself to monitor your spending. Set an allowance for each day. Also take a free meal where ever you can. If your friends are offering to cook instead of going out, take them up on it! However, if you must go out, make sure you scan for the best deals prior to going out. My credit card was offering a deal for money spent at a certain sports bar that's nationally known. That was the first option for were my group of friends choose to watch the game. Normally  I would stay alway from bars to watch sporting events but when out of town I had to readjust. The best thing you could do is search for the best deal.
While I was there, I got the chance to go to the foothills. The foothills are an amazing desert terrain prefect for hiking and bike riding. Why is this a great option?? Because when you’re flying to a city to catch up with friends a hiking trail offers the perfect place to do so. Walk the trail and chat about the happenings of each other's lives. If you have noticed yet, the way your friends choose to hang out after college drastically changes. Gone are the days of drinking until you pass out. Don’t be the friend who still fights to hold on to the life style like Frank the Tank! Going on a hike with a friend also allows you get a workout in, because if you spent the weekend eating Mexican food, you’ll definitely need to work off the LBs! If drinking is your thing and you want to do a lot of it while on vacation, just buy a bottle prior to arriving to your location. Never meet your friends for just drinks, drinks can be had at a hotel or home for a fraction of the cost. It was a great weekend, and I didn’t over spend. I actually spent less than I set aside as my budget. Hopefully you are able to use some of these techniques for your next travel!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

It's your Birthday!!

This past weekend I celebrated my birthday. The older you get the
easier it is to forget that you’re having a birthday (thank God for
the endless Facebook notifications). How you celebrate your birthday
changes as you grow up. Gone are the days of drinking the entire day
away. Now, you want spend your day with loved ones and live a new
cheap life style! So, how do you do this? How do you have a good
weekend without spending all your birthday cash (the amount changes
the older you get folks)? One of my favorite things about my birthday
is the birthday coupons I receive. Whenever I go to a new restaurant, I always
ask if they have an online membership. I join while sitting in and
eating, and throughout the year I’m bombarded with emails on new features and
deals being offered. The real jewel of the membership is the birthday
coupon! Once a year, these restaurants send out coupons for your
birthday! There are two ways you can proceed with these coupons; you could
keep them for yourself or share them with people who are taking you
out to eat over your birthday weekend. If you choose to keep the
coupons, you can eat at some of your favorite restaurants for a fraction of
the cost. If you choose the other alternative, when people ask to take
you to dinner, offer your coupon during payment. It’s a very nice
way to say thank you for taking you to dinner! An extension off that is
using them on a date! Don’t feel ashamed about using coupons on a
date, if a potential life partner can’t respect your savviness for
saving money…. They are not the one!!

So go sign up for the online memberships for your favorite restaurants
the first chance you get! Also, Happy birthday to me!!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Main Event!!!

This is a huge weekend for sports! College football playoffs on Thursday (January 1st), NFL wildcard Playoff games on Saturday and MMA fight later Saturday night!  If you’re a red blooded human being you’re excited about these sporting events! Now, if you’re a person trying to live the new cheap life, you realize there are ways to view all of these games without breaking the bank!  If your mom is like my mom, a huge meal will be cooked on New Year’s Day. Go over there, eat, and watch the games!  Since your turning your parent’s home into your personal sports bar, take your mother some flowers. Moms love flowers, and somehow flowers from your kid translate to $500 in US currency. We got Thursday covered, so now let’s tackle the wildcard games & MMA event on Saturday.  The challenge here is that the MMA fight is PPV (Pay-Per View), so you’ll have to fork over the money if you intend to watch this. The alternative to this is going to a sports bar to watch. Most bars request a cover to enter on PPV events. Once you’re inside the bar, you’re sure to want drinks and food.  You could easily rack up the cost of the cost of the PPV event, inside of a crowded bar.  I suggest you buy the PPV, and invite a group of your friends over to watch at your home.  Request that each person bring something to the viewing party. Also, if you want to have drinks, request that everyone bring a six pack of their personal favorite.  Encourage everyone to try the different types of beer available. If you’re running short on the guest list, allow your friends to invite others to the party. (This won’t work if you don’t have a large enough TV; it’s tough to host a fight party with a 32inch TV).   Now please keep in mind it will be tough for guys to get away from their girlfriends for an entire day, so it is likely you will have female guests at this party. It is your job as the host to make sure they stay engaged to the sporting events. There are all types of betting pools that allow non-sports fans to take interest in the game. One that comes to mind is the football squares game. It’s fun, easy, and doesn’t require much knowledge to make a bet. 

There you have it, a quick and easy way to make it through this great sports filled weekend while living the New Cheap Lifestlye!


Tuesday, December 30, 2014

New Years for the NEW CHEAP

New Year’s is upon us folks, let the planning begin! The credit cards are getting maxed out, and group chats are getting lengthy planning for this year’s event. Ladies, you’ve taken dozens of pictures inside dressing rooms of every store in the city. You’re  not even considering a club if it isn’t VIP, because you have to start off 2015 VIP!!!  Ladies and gentlemen allow me to offer you an alternative to blowing hundreds of dollars to get all dressed up and spending way too much money getting drunk at the club.

As a child my family always had the tradition of spending New Years in church. We would arrive at church at 10pm and stay until midnight. This practice was continued into my adult life until I moved away from my home. The first time I spent NYE away from my hometown and not spending New Years in church, I got all cleaned up and went out in the city. I did all of the wasteful things I mentioned.  I bought a brand new suit and paid for the VIP tickets (VIP was just a table with a party city table cloth over it, nothing fancy). I woke up the next morning looking at my debit card to access the nights spending and became discussed with myself. I literally blew $500 to get drunk and bring in the New Year with strangers.  That $500 could have been used to travel or save money for the house I am planning to buy. It only took me one time to realize that wasn’t how I wanted to spend every New Year’s Eve. I get it, New Years is a big holiday, it’s a chance start fresh. I agree this day holds a symbolic meaning to many, but I don’t agree you should go broke celebrating. So, with that said, we offer a few alternatives for you to consider as you prepare for the New Year’s holiday.

New Year’s Eve Church service:
Many African American churches hold Watch Night service. This stems from a tradition of slaves waiting to see the emancipation proclamation take effect on January 1st, 1863. While African American’s are no longer awaiting freedom from physical slavery, many still enjoy celebrating the coming of another year with their church family. This is inexpensive, and most churches usually provide a breakfast after the service (the further south you go the better the breakfast gets, trust me). This is a great way to spend NYE, as you get sober reflection time to think about the happenings of the past year and your goals for the coming year.

Host a NYE party
Hosting a New Year’s Eve party is a great way to minimize cost and spend time with friends. Invite all of your friends over and request that they bring their favorite drink and side dish to share during the party. You cook a large serving of meat to serve to the guests like a turkey and chicken. This is a small and more intimate way to spend your New Year’s Eve. Meaningful conversation can be had with the people you care most about, while waiting to ring in the New Year. Let’s be honest, how can you seriously expect to have a conversation while a DJ is doing that weird horn thing that every DJ loves to do?! Celebrating New Year’s this way will also allow your residence to be the hotel for anyone who’s had too much to drink. Take all of the car keys and encourage people to spend the night, sleeping off any drinks they consumed. The police will be out in full force attempting to combat the drunk drivers on the roads after a night of partying. It would be a shame for one of your guest to be one of those caught during a traffic stop. (Side note: there is never an excuse to drink and drive; there are way too many travel options available that don’t include an idiot driving after drinking). You can make this night as fancy as possible, have everyone dress up, go to the dollar store and grab some decorations for your house, and also score some reasonable party favors.


Spend it with your parents
Call your parents and tell them that you want to spend New Year’s with them (make sure you stress to them that you don’t need a loan, so that their not apprehensive all night). If your mother finds out you want to give up a night of raging to sit on the sofa and watch Ryan Seacrest with her and your dad, she may begin to cry with excitement! The benefit of this is, you are the guest of honor, so mom will be willing to cook and make sure you are comfortable and enjoying yourself. Invite your partner over and make it a family gathering. This will be a great way for your parents to finally start seeing you as an adult or taking your relationship seriously. Stay the night and let mom cook you breakfast, then you and dad go take out the tree while mom puts away the Christmas decorations. Not a dollar spent and a great, safe time ringing in the New Year.


Whatever you decided, please be safe! As said above, there is no reason for you to drive drunk! If you plan on drinking please secure your transportation prior to the start of the night. It is much cheaper to pay for a taxi than the fees for a DUI.  A sleeping friend would much rather pick your drunk ass up, than attend your funeral to start the year off.