Back-to-School Budget Basics

Racking Up Super Back-to-School Savings From Kindergarten To College

If you’re in need of any Christmas presents at all, regardless of age or gender, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered! Here in Sugar Land, Texas, my mom and I are known as “the discount ladies” (particularly at our local HEB store). I’m almost positive that our saving frenzies are some kind of addiction.

In fact, just a few days ago, we were organizing our stockpile (that we keep in a 3-bedroom apartment, by the way) and found 39 boxes of unopened cereal, 15 boxes of Ziploc bags, 34 bags of fresh ground coffee, and 9 bottles of unused syrup.

Believe it or not, there is a method to the madness. The concept behind all this is, the cheaper the items are, the more we can buy. The more we buy, the more people we can bless.

Everything we buy in bulk has the sole purpose of being donated or made into gift baskets for family and friends. I actually have two such baskets right next to me as I type this.

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Are You Really ‘Keeping it Real?’

Awareness of Your Motives is the 1st Step to True Authenticity  
This article hopefully will become a judge-yourself-moment,  in a non-threatening way. Ask yourself:  Are you real? Do you connect easily with others on topics of conversation and stick to your views? Do you have authentic viewpoints, or do you use others viewpoints as facts? Are you happy with yourself? Do you love yourself? If you don’t like something do you vocalize it? Do you judge and insult others constantly? Are you condescending? Are you nice nasty? Do you smile in people’s faces, yet talk about them behind their backs negatively? In the presence of a friend are you truthful? Do you exaggerate a lot?

 

I often run into people who are so conscious to impress, that confusion is inevitable for them. I find many that are confused with who they are because of defense mechanisms, fear, insecurity, inadequacy, rejection or just plain phony (fake). We all have a speckle of phony or “Halo Effect” had to put a Project Management term in. LOL! Yes back to the point at hand confusion of who they are and how they should behave or act in various settings around people. We are in the world and connected in various ways whether we’d like to be or not. We can’t live in a silo separate from others.

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Personal Development and Education Thanks To Alan Cohen

Alan Cohen is a motivational guru and one of the top-ranking thinkers and writers. He influences the lives of many people who want to live better and are open to getting out of their comfort zone. I recently reviewed his book “How Good Can You Let It Get?” in my speech for GED students and this post is a summary of it.  These students now really have a great way to get ahead fast if the use the Bestgedclasses Prep Course.

GED students face many obstacles, they don’t have a high school diploma so they have to go back to school to earn their GED certificate. It may take them only 3 months to get all set, but often they first join a class with enthusiasm, but only to drop out half way or disappear for a while until they may show up again. Reasons for that being lost interest, family commitment, a job, hard for them to attend a class on a regular basis due to money issues, transportation to class and more. It seems that most GED students come from a low-income world so these issues make sense. So getting the GED  really benefits them!

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Good Reasons to Go Back to School

Online education and distance learning have made the decision of going back to school very easy and very possible. While there are many reasons people now more than ever considering furthering their education. The main reasons are Increased earning potential, Job security, and personal growth.

Higher earning potential:

While higher education doesn’t guarantee a better salary, stats show that overall you are more likely to earn more the higher your education level is. The U.S Department of Labor shows for example that a person with a bachelor’s degree will probably earn twice as much more than a person with just a high school diploma.

Job Security:

If you hold a college degree, you are more likely to find a job and more likely to keep a job. The unemployment rate for high school grads is 10.3 percent, the unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree grads is only 5.4 percent. Not to mention the career opportunities that are made available to you when you hold a college degree.

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Small Business Loans

Loans are an integral part of a business, more so for small businesses. Usually, small businesses require loans for their start-up capital. Even after the business becomes functional, a further loan might be necessary for the expansion of business or for some other business related requirements. Many banks and financial institutions offer these loans. However, they expect something in return for their investment. If you can put yourself in the shoes of the lender and think of the loan amount as your own, you can understand what these expectations are.

So, as a borrower, if you can meet these expectations, your chances of obtaining a loan become much stronger and you can obtain loans much more easily.  In order to get a small business startup loan, the lender needs to know what you need the money for. Here, you need to be very exact and specific about stating your needs. Vague explanations never work. Secondly, the lender will want to evaluate your chances of being able to return the money. So, you should be able to convince the lender about the effectiveness of your business plan. The key here is the business plan and this is where your starting point should be.

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My Memories Suite Digital Scrapbooking

A few years ago I was given the opportunity to try out the My Memories Suite Digital Scrapbook program. This is awesome digital scrapbooking software and I’ve gotta say, I was, and still am, impressed. Whenever I’m not pressed for time and I’m in a store like Target or Michaels, I find myself going down the scrapbooking aisle just wishing I had the time and patience to take on a project.

Many reviewing websites rate My Memories Suite as the best in the market. The program is very affordable and fun to do, and it is also pretty easy. Regardless whether you are a well-seasoned digital scrapbooker or entirely new to this line of activities, My Memories Suite really is the easiest and maybe the best digital scrapbooking program around.

I know it would be next to impossible to lay out all my supplies and sit there with no interruptions or toddler interferences anyway so being able to do it all on the computer is right up my alley! No scissors, no glue, no toddlers touching everything! The software I’m talking about is MyMemories Suite version 8. After a couple of years now, I still love it. When I first downloaded it and starting messing around with it I didn’t think it actually offered much.

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Working 9-to-5 no longer

More choose flexible hours on the job

It’s a typical morning for Terry Hackett. His 6-year-old son, Connor, wakes him up to snuggle in bed, then the creative director is off to work. He downs a PowerBar, stops at Starbucks for coffee and often holds a planning meeting with senior management.

Never mind that it’s not yet 6:30 a.m. and the sky is still black.

“It took some getting used to because I’m not a morning person,” says Hackett, 53, of PRO Group, a Denver-based marketing and merchandising company for wholesalers. He regularly begins his workday before dawn. “But it means I leave around 4 p.m., and I can spend time with my son before dinner.”


The 5 a.m. commuter is no longer an oddity. The workday is starting at an increasingly early hour as more employees adopt non-traditional work schedules, a fast-growing trend that’s transforming the 9 – to – 5 workday.

Employees are getting to work earlier than ever to avoid rush-hour commutes and handle work-family demands, and many employers are simply demanding earlier start times to service clients across the USA and around the globe.

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Get off the Wall And Into Your Audience’s Head

Your responsibility on your creative journey is to share it with others. And care deeply about how to share it. You might as well slap your audience in the face if you’re going to just blow out some glass work, leave it on a shelf at a studio sale or gallery space and then secretly boil when no one cares. You are ultimately declaring, “I have something enormous to say. But I’m only going to show you the answer, not the question to the answer.

So screw you for not understanding it!” If they look at your glass bowl, they’re seeing an answer. An end product to your creative point-of-view. A response to something you experienced or saw for yourself on your epic journey. And intertwined with that form of expression is all of your other life choices and experiences rolled into that answer. Into that glass.

But they have no idea what your experiences are. Or why they should care.

A documentary can layout an entire journey. It can detail what you have to say. It can show someone else, word for word and still by still, why to care. But even if you create something so thorough and profound and just throw it on a shelf waiting for someone to discover it – you might as well say “Screw you. It’s not worth telling you why you should watch it” to the world. You need an epic title. A story. A glorious photo of your work.

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Rebranding a company can be a painful business

My parents named me after a television character – Jody, from that late-’60s, single-parent comedy, Family Affair. Remember Jody and Buffy and Mr. French? Well, the kids in my third-grade class sure didn’t. They only remembered that Jody was a girl’s name, a fact I was reminded of every day on the playground. Thus I decided, when I switched schools in the fourth grade, to rebrand under the much more boyish moniker of Joe. I thought the transformation would grant me acceptance into the inner sanctum of popularity.

The process was relatively easy (and equally meaningless) on the playground. But at home, my parents were hurt, and my aunt even refused to call me Joe, so emotionally tied were they to the image of little Jody, their cute blond kid. Rebranding a company can be just as painful. Yet, alongside premature IPOs and budget-busting television ads, corporate trans appellations have become a popular ingredient of New Economy branding strategies in recent years.

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Life is unfair

Seattle, home to two of the nation’s three richest men and a staggering array of high-tech millionaires, is Ground Zero for inequity. One economist, trying to put Bill Gates’ wealth into everyday terms, calculated that in 1986, when Microsoft went public, Gates was earning enough that it was not worth his time to spend the four seconds necessary to retrieve a dropped $5 bill. By 1998, it wasn’t worth it for Gates to pick up $10,000.

Let me put all this another way. For a quarter-century, you’ve worked like a donkey to boost productivity — and almost all the benefits have gone to your boss and his investors.

Why have we let this happen? Princeton University political scientist Larry Bartels asked just this question and concluded that, basically, we’re dumb: 20 percent of those he polled were unaware of this trend entirely, 40 percent hadn’t thought much about it, and the rest either benefited or didn’t believe anything could be done.

We keep voting for politicians, funded by the upper crust, who have protected this growing inequality. And we do so at our peril. “An imbalance between rich and poor is the oldest and most fatal ailment of all republics,” the philosopher Plutarch said.

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