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Trying to Refinanace and a question

February 20th, 2013 at 12:26 pm

I am fiddling around with trying to refinance our home loan today. While I was checking my credit score at Credit Sesame, it offered a better deal on a home loan refinance from Bank of the Internet. I requested a contact and someone did call me. He was very polite and knowledgeable and after getting all my information said my husband and I can refinance our home at 3.125% for 15 year fixed loan.
Long story short. How do you know a company like this is credible? Everything seems legit.
Who would you suggest I try to refinance with?

Guess how much money I found

November 20th, 2012 at 10:34 am

I knew my SavingAdvice friends would be interested to know the total of my "found money" for the past year. From Nov.15, 2011 to Nov. 15, 2012.

Drum roll please....


I found 109 pennies
9 nickles
25 dimes
6 quarters
1 $5
2 $1

Not bad for just looking at the ground and picking it up.

I started putting all my found money in a specific jar last year to keep up with it,

I did it!

October 29th, 2012 at 08:24 am

Update on my 5 day no spend challenge. Success! I went the whole five days without spending. I know I saved myself lots of money that would have been spent on food or snacks at work and after. It was kind of freeing in a way. Lots of times after work I think about going by the store to pick up a needed item. But, since I wasn't spending, I was able to just go on home and use whatever I had at home.
I put two dinners in the crock pot as a result. They were ready for me when I got home. So I was very happy with the results of my challenge.
I will do it again soon.
Great news on the home front. My son-in-law got a job with Direct TV installing internet and cable. He is feeling so much better about himself.
My husband is working again as well. He left our home in Texas on Saturday morning and is now in Richmond, Virginia waiting out the storm. He is an insurance adjuster and he will be doing loss claims for All State.
So everyone in my household is employed. Thank the good Lord for that!

5-day no spend challenge

October 22nd, 2012 at 01:54 pm

Haven't posted anything for over a year, but I come here often and read and get motivation for saving and spending wisely.
I am doing a five-day no spend challenge this week. It has already saved me money. Everytime I think of something to purchase, I tell myself, "No, remeber your challenge."
It really does help, doesn't it?
Just some random things I have said no to today that have saved me money.
1. A diet coke out of the vending machine. I usually keep my office fridge stocked with canned diet cokes that I purchase on sale at about 30 cents a can as opposed to buying a 20 oz. bottle out of the machine for $1.75. I was out of cans today and thought about getting one out of the machine, but luckily, had to say no, because of my challenge.
2. I like to buy music and put on the Iphone and listen to music while I walk. I thought about buying some today and had to say no, not spending money today.
3. Monday is $5.99 pizza night at Papa John's. You can get a large single topping for $5.99. I like to do this sometimes for a cheap meal on Monday nights. As I was pondering what to have for supper tonight, I thought Pizza! No, can't buy pizza, not spending money today.
So, see these challenges really do help us, don't they.

DH home from Tennessee

June 11th, 2011 at 07:54 am

My DH came home from working in Tennessee last night. He drove in the driveway about 12:30. He is still sleeping this morning after his 12 hour drive home yesterday.
He's been gone two months. He is an insurance adjuster and goes out after big storms.
We were happy he got to work. Happy he is home for awhile. He started doing this work about 6 years ago. He is very good at it with his background in construction and building material sales.
I always hate to see him go but I know he is going to help people. After a storm people need their hoems fixed as soon as possible. They are always glad to see him coming.
He's also a Christian man that lives his faith so he is honest and fair to the people he goes to see.
He has even been known to pray with them.
He makes good money when he's gone.
He refilled our coffers on this trip.
I'm off to the church to decorate for Vacation Bible School.

June 11th, 2011 at 07:44 am

Day 3 of no spend challenge a Success

June 8th, 2011 at 04:27 pm

I decided to come home from work at noon today. This sickness that took me to the doctor on Monday is really dragging down my energy. Slept a lot this afternoon.
Picked up DGS on my way home so I didn't have to go back to town and get him. He enjoyed having a little down time as well.
So my day 3 of my challenge was a success!
No money spent today.

I have noticed that I am enjoying NOT going by the store for anything or even the fast food places. I have so many responsibilites and so little time to myself or at home. Eliminating shopping from my schedule is a win-win!

Day 2 of 10-day no spend challenge

June 7th, 2011 at 07:26 pm

Today was day two of my challenge. I had a chiropractor appt. this afternoon. I have been going twice a week for a few weeks now. I paid for 3 visits today, $45. That will cover today, Thursday and next Tuesday. My challenge is over on Wednesday the 5th.
I know I spent money but this was a planned event and I am not counting it against my challenge.
So even though I spent my first two days of the challenge they were both doctor's appts. so I am not counting either of these days against me.
As far as I am concerned for my purposes of doing this challenge I am doing great so far.
I went to JC Penney and returned a ring today that I had purchased about a month ago. It was too big for me and got a $10 credit back on my JCPenney card.

I didn't spend any money today. I sure wanted to look around in JCPenney but I just tried to keep my blinders on and got out of there as fast as I could.

So tomorrow it is on to day three of my challenge. And it will be challenging. DGS and I always go to church on Wednesday night and always go to McDonalds before church. So I am going to have to come up with something innovative to convince him it is okay to skip McDonalds night.
After church we always stop back by McDonalds for an ice cream cone.
Challengeing indeed!

Darn computer

June 6th, 2011 at 06:02 pm

I typed up a long entry and my computer blimped out and I lost the whole thing. It was weird.
Let me continue.

So, I went to the doctor around 4:30 and he did give me a prescription for a Z-pack of antibiotics and a steroid shot for inflamation. (I didn't know I needed steroids for inflamation but that's what I got).

I went to the pharmacy that is closest to my doctor's office to get the prescription filled so I wouldn't use a lot more gas going out of my way.
Then I went immediately to pick up DGS and drove home

Copay at doctor = $25
prescription = $13.29
Total = $38.29
cost of feeling better = Priceless!

I was pondering, before I went to the doctor, where I would go to get my prescription filled if he gave me one. I thought about Target. If I wasn't doing this challenge I would have gone to Target to "shop around" while my prescription was being filled.
I am a shopaholic. I don't spend a lot of money on big ticket items or anything, but I love a sale. I love the clearance aisles at Target. A few small purchases here and there add up.
So my goal is to stay out of stores for 10-days.
The pharmacy I went to had plenty of stuff to look at but I chose to sit in one of the chairs they had provided for waiting.
Yay me!
So, I am going to continue my 10-day no spend challenge because it is working for me to get me back into frugalness.

Day One of 10-day no spend challenge

June 6th, 2011 at 08:03 am

Well, as they say, the best laid plans of mice and men oft go astray.
This is my first day of my 10-day no spend challenge and I am already challenged.
An emergency has come up and I will have to spend today.
I have been suffering from a sore throat and laryngitis about the last 5 days and this morning it is very painful.
Strept throat is going around my office so I had to make a dr. appt. today.
I will probably have to get a prescription too.
Luckily, I do have an emergency fund in place.

I spent a lot of the weekend planning meals and shopping. It will be quite a feat if I am able to go 10 days without going to the grocery store.
I have already seen ways this challenge has been good for my pocket book.
As I was doing dishes this morning, I was careful to be more sparing with the dish soap because I forgot to buy any more this weekend.
Same with the toothpaste.
Normally I don't think about it and just squeeze probably too much in.
I will end cooking things out of my freezer instead of going out to the store and buying more.
I'm excited about this challenge.

10-day no spend challenge

June 4th, 2011 at 12:53 pm

Hi everyone, I have been away again, but I'm ready to back on the train.

Have a new challenge.
I saw this on the Yahoo Business blog. The author said she and some of her online buddies do a challenge where you don't spend any money for 10-days. I guess it's like a 10-day extreme cleanse or something. LOL.

I'm going get my meals planned and shopping done. I filled up with gas today.
I'm going to go ahead and pay any bills early that are due in the next 10 days.
I have a couple of things I know I need to spend money on. I have prepaid my DGS child care with the Y for the next month, but they don't do Fridays so I have to get someone to keep him on Friday. Or, I might just take the day off. That is the easiest way to have a no spend day. Just stay home.

I'm excited about it. I will let you know how I'm doing each day.

Pearl Harbor Day

December 7th, 2010 at 04:30 pm

December 7 is Pearl Harbor Day. My parents married just after Pearl Harbor was attacked in 1941. They will be married 69 years on December 21st.
They are an amazing couple.
They learned to be frugal through growing up on farms and living through the depression.
They have never been rich but they have lived comfortably and had nice homes and cars.
My dad took early retirement at 62 and my mother never worked outside the home.
They are both now 88. They have really enjoyed their retirment years. I hope my husband and I can do as well.
Tom Brokow wrote a book about their time called "The Greatest Generation."
They have seen amazing changes in their lives. From riding in horse drawn wagons to the space age.
My mother was the "boy" in her family of five girls. She would drive the team and plow for her daddy.
They moved to California from Texas just after they married and Dad got a job in an aircraft factory.
They had their first child in California a year later.

They have lived a long time and lived well. Sure hope they make it to their 70th wedding anniversary next year.

I bought 3 - twelve packs of diet coke at CVS today for $7 after the Extra bucks reward. That's just $2.33 per 12-pack.
Also found a quarter today while I was filling up with gas. Yippee!
New found money total = $3.49

Good News!

December 6th, 2010 at 11:18 am

It has been awhile since I last posted. My last entry said my car needed a new transmission, but it turned out my transmission was okay! The shop I took it to thoroughly checked it out and there was nothing wrong with it. The "check engine" light had come on and all the codes indicated that it was transmission problems. And I thought I had noticed the car "slipping." But the guy at the shop confirmed that I did not need any repair at this time.
He said the computer could be messed up and told me to just drive it!
He didn't even charge me anything.
On the found money front:

My 6-year-old DGS that lives with us found a $20 bill right before Thanksgiving! I have been teaching him to look for coins. He was with his Papa coming out of the grocery store and found it in the parking lot!
Then, Saturday night, he found a $1 when we were getting out of the car. He is doing great! I told him he was lucky.

I have found lots of coins since I last wrote, but no paper money, although I certainly look for it.
I will add another $.60 to my found money total.
old total = $2.64
new total = $3.24.

Car Needs Transmission Repair

November 19th, 2010 at 08:09 am

My 2003 Dodge Stratus has disappointed me once again. They say it needs to have the transmission rebuilt for $1250. With 104,000 miles on it I guess it hasn't been that bad of a car. I was really hoping to drive it for at least one more year to get some more of our debt paid off.
DH and I went to the Ford Dealership after work yesterday. They actually sell Hyundai also. So I test drove a Hyundai Santa Fe just for the heck of it.
It was new and the price tag was about $24,000. Ugh.
Not ready to add a lot more debt right now. I think we are going to get the Stratus fixed.
They will guarantee the transmission for a year or 24,000 miles.
A year would be a good goal to get ourselves in line to buy a new vehicle.
Hopefully the car won't have any more problems. I would not recommend the Dodge Stratus. I have had too many problems with it.

$1.39 corn

November 12th, 2010 at 11:03 am

Wow! I couldn't believe what a can or corn cost at a local grocery store I went to this week.
I had some time to kill before going to an appt. so I went in a nearby grocery store to do a little couponing..
I had seen their ad and it looked like they had some good Thanksgiving specials.
I was browsing the canned food aisle, comparing the coupons I had for canned vegetable.
I had a coupon for Green Giant canned vegetables so I got two cans of whole kernal corn; nothing at all special about the corn.
When I went to pay I noticed they rang up $1.39 a piece!
I thought the shelf label had said they were on sale for $.59 a can. I called it to her attention and she went to look at the shelf. No, she said, the correct price for the corn is $1.39 a can.
Of course I told her I would pass on the corn. But, I just couldn't imagine why they would have it priced so high. I guess that's how they make their money. They advertise good loss leaders, then hike up the prices of the everyday stuff.

Time For An Update

November 10th, 2010 at 12:46 pm

It has been a couple of weeks since I blogged so I have some updating to do.

DD Wedding:
Yes! She got married Oct. 23. It was great! They went to the courthouse and a very nice female Hispanic judge did their ceremony. She did a greas job by the way. It was just my DD and her DH and their six-month-old baby; me and my DH and our six-year-old DGS.
We all dressed up. The pictures turned out great. Then we all went to a nice steakhouse for dinner. We picked up the tab.
Then on Saturday evening they had their wedding reception in a friend's backyard. It was very simple with only a few family and relatives. I think we had 40 people there.
My DH and I ended up spending about $2000 for the whole thing. His brother and his family came a long distance and we took them out to eat and paid for their hotel rooms.
My DD and her DH really loved it and they were VERY appreciative, so it made it all worthwhile.

I have found another $.55 in change since I last blogged. Including 4 dimes, a nickel, and the rest in pennies. I love dimes.
Old total: $2.09
New total: $2.64

Found a new slogan.... and a quarter

October 19th, 2010 at 02:27 pm

I get the "Debt-Proof Living" daily tip in my email and she closed with a good quote today. I printed it out and put it next to my computer.

"Wherever I am, whatever I do, there is a way to do it for less," Mary Hunt, Debt-Proof Living.

Words to live by.

I found a quarter today. I had not found anything for several days and all of a sudden a good find

I will add that to the penny I found the other day.
$1.83 = old found money total
+$.26 =

$2.09 new found money total.

Very Thankful This Morning

October 19th, 2010 at 06:48 am

My DH arrived safe and sound last night after being away from home since the end of June. He was working in Pennsylvania and we live in Texas, so it took him 2 days to drive home. I am just always so thankful that God takes care of him and gets him safely back home. He makes good money, but I sure hate for him to be gone.

$20 - Christmas gifts for DGS to give to relatives (art magnets).

Catching up on recording stuff...

October 18th, 2010 at 12:14 pm

Nothing too interesting to report. I just wanted to catch up on recording my spending since I haven't recorded anything since last Wednesday.

T-shirt to support breast cancer awareness, $10.
Snack from vending machine = $1.
Kroger, food = $68.31
Palais Royal:
clothes for wedding = $31.00
Babysitting = $20
Kroger, food = $37.75
Today bought muffin and hot tea, $2.20

saved $9.55 using coupons
add to old $20 challenge total of $52.54
= new total for $20 challenge = $62.09


October 14th, 2010 at 11:11 am

DGS and I went to a free carnival with some friends last night. The university I work for provided this as part of our homecoming week festivities.
We got free cotton candy and carmel corn and got to ride a few rides.
Ya gotta love free entertainment!

Wednesday spending:
McDonald's : $6.48
Walgreen's: $4.98
saved $9.50 with coupons
add this to $20 challenge
old total: $47.56 + $4.98 =
new total = $52.54

No Spender!

October 13th, 2010 at 01:52 pm

Finally had a no-spend day yesterday. My DGS begged for Taco Bell before we went home, but I stood firm, and said, "No, we have been spending too much money and we have good food at home."
So, I made it through all day without spending.

Also, we went to our first cub scout meeting yesterday. It was good. I decided I wasn't going to mind going to the meetings with him and in fact I look forward to it. Don't know if I will go camping all weekend or not, but that's okay. We weren't really doing anything together and this is going to be a great opportunity to do some good things together. We have 8 in our troop.

I found $.15 today.
Old found money total = $1.68
new total = $1.83

weekend spending

October 12th, 2010 at 10:47 am

Sorry, this is a boring blog post. Just recording my spending and saving.
I know I have been spending too much money on stuff, so I thought I would start recording it here to see just how much I have spent and on what.
I plan to do this all month. Then I can go back and take a look and add it all up.

Found money = $.04 over the weekend.
Old found money total = $1.51
New total = $1.55

Found money, Monday = $.13
new total = $1.68

Spending, Friday =
Walmart = $70.70 includes a BD gift for a party my DGS went for $17.00.

Spending Saturday =
Walmart = $80.00 groceries and household stuff.
saved $5.05 with coupons. This will go into my $20 challenge.
J.C. Penney's = 49.75. Sheet set, one pair Levi's for DGS, two new wash cloths.
Saved $30 with coupons.
Add this to $20 challenge.
old $20 challenge total = $22.51
+ 25.05=

New $20 challenge total = $47.56

Spending, Sunday =
McDonalds = $5.88
Church = $200.00

Monday spending =
Yoga class = $3
Child care = $20
grocery store = $6.97

DD getting married

October 7th, 2010 at 09:31 am

Well, our DD and her SO are making it legal on Oct. 23. They already have a very sweet and precious 5-month-old baby boy. They have been wanting to get married for awhile, but not finding the right time. Yes, I know the right time would have been before she got pregnant, but that didn't happen, so now they are going for it. They said they wanted to do it in October because this is their favorite month.
My DH and I talked it over and decided on what we thought we could afford to chip in for their small ceremony and reception (party).
Our DD is 30 and already has the baby and living on her own with SO, so we don't feel obligated to go all out for a wedding and they don't have much money right now since our DD is staying home with their baby. But we are very excited and happy that they are finally getting married. She is our only daughter and we have waited a long time for this day. So, even though we have a lot of debt right now, we are giving them $1200 to help them with expenses and as a wedding gift.
They are going to the JP and then having a recption/party at a friend's house afterward.

muffin this morning = $2.26
pizza last night = $10.80
grocery story = $19.45
Dr. Haynes = $24.00
Found = $.03
New found money total = $1.51

New $20 challenge total = $22.51

To join Cub Scouts or not to join Cub Scouts....

October 6th, 2010 at 02:18 pm

Okay, so my DH and I are raising our DGS 6-year-old. My DH works out of town for months at a time. Currently, he has not been home since he left at the end of June. So, I am almost totally responsible for our DGS.
I work 40 hours a week, take care of DGS, our home, our dog, our cat, and our one-acre lot of yard to mow and attend to.
I had been excited to get DGS into scouts when he was old enough. So, when he brought home the flier from school about joining he was excited about it.
We went to the meeting last night and here is where I start doubting if we can do this.
They expect the parents or parent or guardian or whoever to attend all the meetings with the scout and go on weekend long camping trips in the cold and sell a whole bunch of popcorn.
I can probably go to the meetings and I don't mind selling popcorn, but I am not going to be camping all weekend. I just can't do that and work full time and take care of everything else. And I'm pretty sure my husband won't be willing to do it even when he is home.
So, even though I did pay DGS's $19.75 fee last night to get him signed up, I'm thinking about telling DGS that we are not going to do that and we will just have to find other activities that won't be so time consuming.
I am the kind of person who really needs my down time and some me-time. I am not getting enough as it is, so I don't think this would help.
They really made me kind of mad, because they say on the flier that the boys will get this cool rocket thing for coming to the meeting, but they wouldn't give you one unless you signed up.
Don't get me wrong, I think scouting is great. I think my DGS would really enjoy it and get a lot out of it. But I just don't think I'm up to it.
And that really makes me kind of sad and bummed out about it. If I didn't have to work full time, I think I could do it. But not the way things are now.

I found $.60 the past two days on the ground.
New found money total= $1.48

$20 challenge-
previous total = $21.88
new total = $22.48

$20 challenge

October 5th, 2010 at 06:55 am

Spending -- weekend and Monday.

I didn't have a chance to record my spening since last Friday so here goes.
I am recording all my spending (besides regular bills) here because every time I try to use a small notebook and pen in my purse I end up forgetting or misplacing my notebook or something happens.
So,,,, since I always know where to find my blog, here goes.
Saturday --
$22.00 - Dollar General - cleaning supplies, and stuff, stock up. Saved $11.00 with coupons.
$87.00 - Walmart - groceries and Halloween costume for DGS. saved $10 with coupons.

Monday --
$3.00 - Yoga class
$10.00 - baby sitter
$3.40 - McDonald's Happy meal for DGS
$17.50 -- grocery store, food.

I found 11 cents in change yesterday

I am starting my $20 challenge, for the year, with my coupon savings and my found money. (I know it's late but I have just recently returned to SA).

Coupons = $21.00
Found money total = $.88

$20 challenge = $21.88, this is going into my new living room furniture fund. Yay!

Our Family Finances

October 1st, 2010 at 11:45 am

My DH is a catastrophic insurance adjuster. He has been working in Pennsylvania for the past 3 months, working claims for Allstate.
He makes really good money doing this job, but, there have been long spells where there was no work for him.
He has been doing this job since 2005 and I have learned to save our money for when he is not working. It makes budgeting very difficult. Part of our credit card debt was from the last time he spent not working.
I handle all of the finances for our family. He never looks at or pays a bill. He has no idea what we owe and what kind of savings we have. He just trusts me to do all of that.
My husband has always been a very hard worker. We owned a small lumber yard and construction business for many years. We finally went broke doing that in the 90s because the economy was so bad where we lived. But, he always worked 6 days a week and many times he roofed houses because he could make a lot of money doing it.
He went to work for the state for a few years and that steady income was so nice. Always knew what we would have to work with for the month. But, he got to where he didn't like his boss and co-workers so he wanted to do this adjuster thing.
He tried to get a job last time he was home, but didn't even get any interviews. In this economy I guess it is good he has the job he does have now.
But, it is hard with him being gone so much.
We miss him and like I said, financially it is not very reassuring to not ever know how much money you are going to have to work with.

Always before, I would start paying off the CCs by the thousands because his pay is so good.
But, this time, I have decided to just pay $1000 per month extra toward the debt. That way we will have plenty in our checking and saving account to tide us over until the next time he works.
He has been gone about 3 months this time, and I think he will be home soon.
So, maybe he can be home a couple of months for a break and then go somewhere and work for another 3 or 4 months.
We shall see.....

Spending today...
$4.64 = salad for lunch
$6.10 = Walgreens, lotion and cough medicine
$1.00 = car wash to vacuum out car

More money found today and some spent

September 30th, 2010 at 01:43 pm

I found 20 cents when I went on my afternoon walk and I found a penney earlier today in a chair in the library. That brings my new "found money" total to $.77 and I just started it this week!

I spent $9 at lunch today out with the girls.
It was fun!

Planning to go right home afer work after picking up DGS at school.
Can't spend any more money that way and there are soooo many things to be done at home.

Found a quarter and counting my blessings....

September 30th, 2010 at 08:28 am

I found a quarter on the ground on my way into work this morning. I really had to look hard to find this quarter. I wasn't even sure it was one until I knelt down and picked up. For the past few days I have been looking to find money on the ground.
I didn't find any yesterday, but this morning I was really looking hard and I saw something at the edge of the side walk, sticking up, that was brown but it looked like a coin. Sure enough, when I picked it up I saw it was a quarter. Although very dirty and discolored it was some real money.

I walk on that sidewalk every day, to and from my car, and I never noticed that coin before, although, by the looks of it, I would say it has been there for a long, long time. I just wasn't looking for it before.
I got to thinking that is how it is with blessings in my life. Sometimes I have to look really hard to see my blessings, but if I am intent to find something, I realize it has been there all along, I just wasn't seeing it.

My found on the ground total rises to $.52 with my new find.

Yesterdays spending:
$1.90 = postage to send my mom a photo book I had created for her.
$8.40 = Walgreens for necessitites.
$8.65 = 2 pair black pants at the resale shop

Tuesday Financial News...

September 29th, 2010 at 06:24 am

Spending --

J. C. Penney-- Had a coupon for $10 off a $10 or more purchase, so I bought two bath towels on sale for 5.99 each. I only had to spend $2.12 for two super nice, brand new bath towels. I get these great coupons from JCP regularly and this is how I like to use them. I update my bath linens this way with very little out-of-pocket money.

I also got a $15 off a $15 or more purchase from JCP in the mail yesterday for my birthday. I really need a new set of bed sheets so I will probably use this one for sheets.

$4.85 = Grilled chicken salad for lunch at McDonald's.
I usually bring salad already prepared from home but was gone all weekend and haven't made it to the store yet. I will have to make it a point to go by the store on my way home from work today before I pickup DGS from after-school care. I don't like paying too much for my food. I could have bought a cheaper lunch but I just spent the past few months working very hard to lose 25 lbs. I feel so much better

$20.00 co-pay for my prescription for Allegra.

Savings --

I moved $13,000.00 from our checking account to an HSBC online savings account today so it will earn some interest until we need it to pay bills.
It is paying 1.10% and my checking account pays nothing. I will see how long I can leave it there.
This online savings is what I use for an auto-deduction from the checking once per week. Just $25 per week, but it adds up.

Made it by the store on the way home and spent $28.00 on groceries.
Found a penney on the ground on the way in the store.
New found money total = $ .27.

spendin category

September 28th, 2010 at 01:35 pm

My spending for Monday, Sept. 27, 2010

Salad for lunch at work = $4.50
Babysitting = $13.00
Yoga class = $3.00
Walgreen's, nuts on sale BOGO = $6.50
Picked up dog from being boarded over weekend + $24.00

Found on the ground money = 1 quarter and 1 penney = .26.

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