January 1, 2014

Wrapped China Assignment, Round 2

Hanoi, Vietnam We just wrapped up our temporary assignment in China and arrived back in the US before the end of the year. Its amazing how time flies, it seems like just a few days ago that we began...
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October 14, 2013

Packing Tips for Extended Family Travel

My young family is on the move - we are currently living in China on a 6 month work assignment. With the exorbitant cost to ship additional stuff to China we were incented to only bring what we could fit...
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July 28, 2013

Survival Guide to Traveling with Young Kids

We didn't have much experience traveling with our young kids prior to our current assignment in China. We did lots of reading in preparation, but we were unprepared for both how exhausting and rewarding it has been for us. Here...
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July 13, 2013

Frugal Family Passport Holder

As part of our planning for our international journey to China with our kids, I wanted to find a convenient way to keep the families passports organized. I can barely keep up with my own, but the best solution...
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June 10, 2013

Travel Activities for Young Kids on Long Flights

Here is a list of ideas of trip activities/toys we've been collecting for our long international plane ride with our preschool age daughter (total journey time door to hotel will take ~25 hours) for our upcoming trip to China. Crayola...
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May 27, 2013

Shaking Things Up - Another China Assignment?

My wife and I have decided to mix things up and accept a work assignment in China for at least 6 months with our family in tow. We've been contemplating this move for several months. We still are not sure...
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June 28, 2011

Back in China for a Business Trip

Its good to get back to China. I'm finally back here for a bit on a business trip. It has been almost 3 years since my wife and I wrapped up our assignment in Shenzhen, China. Time Flies! It is...
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May 17, 2011

Time For A Mini Retirement or Sabbatical?

I have recently had the restless itch of feeling I have been stuck in one place for too long and want to do something different. I need a jolt to my system if you will. My wife and I have...
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July 26, 2010

Squeezing the Last of the Assignment Benefits

Not really getting any bottom line benefit, but trying to negate the impact of taxable benefits from our overseas work assignment that ended in 2008. Since our China assignment ended in 2008 it would make sense I wouldn't get any...
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April 18, 2010

A Sign the Economy is Improving

Perhaps the most clearest sign for me yet that our economy is starting to pick up is that I was actually approved for a business trip at work to China this month. Since I returned from my assignment in China...
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September 22, 2008

Headed Back To The US A Few Months Early

A couple weeks ago my employer offered me an engineering management position back home in Raleigh, NC that lined up nicely with my career goals and after talking with my wife decided the time was right to take it. The...
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July 21, 2008

Even China Has Bargain Bins for Expats

When my wife and I first arrived in China for our assignment our priority was adjusting. I knew it was going to be a big change for both of us and whatever we could do to make the transition easier...
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July 4, 2008

Localizing in China - A Sign of the Times?

I recently had a coworker from the US localize in China. He is the first in our organization - someone from the US who decided that he would benefit more by quitting the US organization and hiring into the China...
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June 27, 2008

We Are Extending Our Assignment 6 More Months

We were asked at the beginning of this month to extend our assignment for an additional 6 months. We had a number of issues to resolve when we were asked to extend, but somehow everything came together. I was able...
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May 26, 2008

We Were Asked To Extend Our Assignment In China

Not completely unexpected, I was asked today if we could extend our international assignment till the end of 2008. With only 4 weeks left, we are starting to look forward to everything that is going to happen when we get...
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May 15, 2008

Planning Our Life Together and Reaching Our Financial Goals

My wife and I have been having a lot of life planning discussions recently. Now that we are married it is time for us to start putting together "our" big picture. Of course we have talked many times about this...
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March 26, 2008

Why Take An International Assignment?

My wife and I are beginning to wrap up our assignment here in China. In less than 90 days we should be headed back to the US unless there is an unexpected change. I thought it would be a good...
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December 5, 2007

What Costs A Lot and What Costs Little in China

Per a reader request I put together a little list of items/services that has a signficantly different price point in China (at least in Shenzhen, China) compared to what I pay in the US: Walmart - Walmart does not seem...
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August 31, 2007

Upgraded to Skype Pro

I have made some progress with my Skype service after initially finding the Skype service offerings very confusing. I decided to upgrade to Skype Pro. Its a bundled service for $36 a year. The confusing thing is the bundle changes...
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August 27, 2007

Love Skype But Confusing Options to Upgrade

Since I have begun my China assignment, the most cost-effective tool I have been using is Skype. I tried it out on a business trip earlier this year before I moved to China and found it worked very well...
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July 31, 2007

Off to China for My Assignment

I am still getting settled in, but off to a good start on my assignment to Shenzhen, China. Once things settle down I hope to resume postings in more regular fashion. This assignment is something I have been working toward...
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July 30, 2007

Cingular Reduced Rate Suspend

Since I am leaving the country for an extended assignment, I wanted to see what I could do reduce my US cell phone expenses. My top priority is to keep my phone number, but I have little use for a...
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December 19, 2006

Sketchy Temporary Assignment Tax Deductions

Earlier I highlighted the major deductions available (as misc unreimbursed business expenses) available to me as a result of my temporary assignment for work. However, there are still lots of other "grey" areas that are on the fence as to...
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October 11, 2006

Midpoint in Temporary Assignment Expenses

Amazing as it is to me, I am already halfway through my temporary assignment at work. NY has been nice (especially the cooler evenings), but being the tightwad I am it also been tough getting use to the higher prices...
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August 2, 2006

Temporary Assignment Tax Deductions

One of the hidden gems of my temporary assignment is I may be able to deduct many of my expenses from the temporary assignment on my income taxes. While this is a sizable opportunity to reduce my income taxes, there...
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June 16, 2006

Finalized Temporary Assignment Living Arrangements

Whew! After getting over the sticker shock of rental prices in NY, I have reached an agreement to rent a room for $800/month. This is above the most likely estimate I was shooting for paying in rent, but I think...
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May 30, 2006

Even though I have agreed

Even though I have agreed to take a temporary assignment for my employer which will significantly increase my living expenses during the period, I have a couple ideas on how I can minimize the damage:1.) My employer will cover the...
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May 17, 2006

Planning My Temporary Assignment

As I previously mentioned I am going on a temporary assignment to NY for the rest of this year. I know this going to affect my monthly expenses for the rest of the year, but how bad will it be?I...
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May 6, 2006

I'm Headed to Poughkeepsie, NY!

I will be taking a temporary assignment in Poughkeepsie, NY for the remainder of the year! This will be a big change with huge impacts both in my personal life and my financial goals.I will be taking this assignment as...
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A personal finance weblog of my journey to reach my goal of $2 million + the value of my primary residence.
Current Net Worth: $1,252,129

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