Category Archives: Best advice from dads

My Pop-Tart Dad

“The smallest gestures often make the biggest difference.”

—John Wooden


Today’s story is from Sharon.

Dad was distant. We never had a close relationship. Did he even like me? Sometimes I wondered.

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Sharon’s Dad during a recent family Christmas.

My father was taciturn, reserved, an academic. Neat freak. Perfectionist. Workaholic.

We were like sugar and salt. I was full of words — and problems, too. Dad said little, buried in work and his books. That’s why my sister and I first lived with Mom in Illinois. But as I grew older, it didn’t work out. Mom and I had issues.

I was bipolar, had OCD and an eating disorder. It became too much for her to handle. So at 18, I packed up and headed for Minnesota to live with Dad. At least he would just leave me alone.

He was exactly as I remembered. Introverted. Distant. But he had a razor sharp intellect, and was very observant. READ MORE 

Terrible Car Buying Tips

by Greg Hague

Terrible Car Buying Tips (Terrible for Them, Not You)


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Buying a new car?

Here are a few savvy tips to snag your best deal.

1. KNOW THE REAL DEALER COST – Through the Internet you can usually find the dealer invoice, the dealer “hold back” (extra profit dealers receive from the manufacturer not reflected in the invoice) and any other dealer or consumer incentives offered by the manufacturer. The point is to know the real dealer cost before you start to negotiate.

2. SHOP BY PHONE – You lose a HUGE advantage when you’re standing on the showroom floor. Before you go anywhere, negotiate dealers against each other by telephone. Get your absolute best cash price. Dealers will be less resistant to negotiating by phone if you say you’re from far away (you are – it’s a relative term).

3. NEGOTIATE A “NO TRADE” PRICE – If you have a car to trade, don’t let the cat out of the bag until the end. Dealers often pad the value of a trade (inflate the price) with extra profit built into the car you’re buying.

Dealers know that buyers are usually more sensitive to the $$ they receive for their car than the $$ they pay for the new car.

You will never know how much you are really receiving for your trade unless you first negotiate the lowest no-trade price on the car you’re buying.

4. FINANCE THE PURCHASE – Consider financing your new car for a few months, even if you can pay cash. Dealers often receive a large spiff on buyers who finance their cars (through the dealer).

This spiff is often substantial because it presumes, based on averages, that you’ll keep the loan in place for several years.  But you don’t have to. You can pay off most car loans at any time with no penalty.

So, once you’ve negotiated your best no-financing price, see if you can obtain an additional $300-$500 (or more) discount if you finance. Then pay off the loan in the first month or two. Your interest on a $20,000 loan at 5% for one month is only about $85, (and you’ll be earning some offsetting interest on the extra $20,000 in your account during that time).

5. SAY NO ‘TIL YOUR TONGUE BLEEDS – That’s a favorite phrase from my friend, Harvey Mackay. Cars go down in value (even on the dealer’s lot). Remember, the deal tomorrow is usually better then the deal today. When buying a car, time is on your side while the cash is in your pocket.

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World’s Best Father – Dave Engledow


by Greg Hague


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Today it is our honor to publish a Savvy Dad interview with “World’s Best Father,” Dave Engledow.

You probably already know him through many of the photos we have shared on the Savvy Dad Facebook page.  Dave’s wonderfully creative photography, depicting hilarious images of him and his daughter, Alice Bee, have gained widespread recognition.

 

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Dave was gracious enough to take the time to answer a few questions for Savvy Dad about being the “World’s Best Father,” and how his savvy parents helped guide him into becoming the truly awesome dad he is today.


SD:  What was the best life lesson you learned from your mom or dad?

WBF:  The life lesson I learned from Mom is to always be supportive, no matter what.  No matter what life choices I have made over the years, my mother has always supported me unconditionally and told me she was proud of me.  I hope to be able to do the same for Alice Bee as she grows up.

SD:  What was the most special memory you recall with your mom or dad?

WBF:  I think I get my sense of humor from my father.  I remember one Christmas there was a giant box under the tree.  Inside was another large, gift-wrapped box, and inside that was another, and so on. After opening and unwrapping at least 15 boxes, I found the gift that was the thing I most wanted for Christmas that year – a brand new Swiss Army knife.

SD:  What is the best advice you can pass on to other dads and dads-to-be out there?

WBF:  Make sure to spend time just observing the journey of your new child.  It’s easy to get caught up in trying to shape who and what they are to become (when in fact, I think we as parents have little to no control over that), so make sure to just sit back and quietly watch how they interact with the world.

 

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Biography:

Dave Engledow attended the University of Texas at Austin, earning a Bachelor of Journalism in Photojournalism under the mentorship of esteemed documentary photographer Dennis Darling.  Engledow currently lives with his wife, Jen, and his daughter, Alice Bee, in the suburbs of Washington, D.C.

He spends his days working full-time as the Deputy Director for Working America, the community affiliate of the AFL-CIO.  His “World’s Best Father” photo series is an ongoing project consisting of over 125 images, all of which are shot on weekends and edited at night after Alice Bee has finally gone to sleep.

His book, “Confessions of the World’s Best Father,” will be released on May 6, and is currently available for pre-order on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and most other online book retailers:

http://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Worlds-Best-Father-Engledow/dp/1592408893

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You can check out more of his great photos at his Facebook Page:

https://www.facebook.com/EngledowArtPhotography


Showing Up As They’re Growing Up



This story contributed by Melissa Ahearn


me and dad

When I was young, my dad worked at a downtown law firm.  They had every color pen and fun drinks in the fridge.  My dad even had his own office with pictures of my brother, my mom and me.

I remember thinking what a cool job he had!

Dressed in suit and tie, briefcase in hand, he would get in his Volvo with his coffee spilling everywhere and drive off – only after sending my brother and me off on the school bus, of course.  READ MORE 

Mario Andretti – Exclusive Interview Part 2



This story was contributed by racing legend, Mario Andretti.


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No Plan B

Part 2 of a 2-part exclusive interview

Part 1 can be viewed here: http://savvydad.com/mario-andretti-exclusive-interview/

Immigration

Mario_Andretti_1969 2After the end of World War II, and living seven and a half years in a refugee camp in Lucca, Italy, the Andrettis were granted their long-awaited visas to enter the U.S.  Filled with hope and leaving all of their belongings behind, the family set sail for America aboard the Conte Biancamano.

On the morning of June 16, 1955, the Italian ocean liner slowly pulled into New York Harbor.

The family of five spoke not a word of English and

arrived with just $125 to their name.

They settled in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, and lived with Mario’s uncle. READ MORE 

Mario Andretti – Exclusive Interview



This story was contributed by racing legend, Mario Andretti.


bio_01Nothing for Granted

Part 1 of a 2-part exclusive interview

He is considered by most to be the greatest race car driver of all time.  It’s no wonder.  Mario Andretti is one of only two drivers in history to win races in Formula One, NASCAR, Indycar, and the World Sportscar Championship.  He is the only driver to be dubbed United States Driver of the Year in three different decades. READ MORE 

Driving with Dad

This story contributed by Christian Jurinka


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Do you remember when you were 8?

I remember simple things like kicking the ball with my Dad, or throwing the football. 

Just the other day, the magnitude of one of my experiences hit me – learning to DRIVE.  That’s right, when I was 8 Dad taught me how to drive.

The two-hour drive to my grandparents set the stage.

Leaving the neighborhood and city streets, my excitement built, as I knew that once we hit the highway, it would be my time to drive. READ MORE