Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The 21-Day Financial Fast Your Path to Financial Peace and Freedom

What they say: 

Financial Peace and Freedom in 21 Days
In The 21-Day Financial Fast, award-winning writer and The Washington Post columnist Michelle Singletary proposes a field-tested financial challenge. For twenty-one days, participants will put away their credit cards and buy only the barest essentials. With Michelle’s guidance during this three-week financial fast, you will discover how to:
Break bad spending habits
Plot a course to become debt-free with the Debt Dash Plan
Avoid the temptation of overspending for college
Learn how to prepare elderly relatives and yourself for future long-term care expenses
Be prepared for any contingency with a Life Happens Fund
Stop worrying about money and find the priceless power of financial peace
As you discover practical ways to achieve financial freedom, you’ll experience what it truly means to live a life of financial peace and prosperity.
Thousands of individuals have participated in the fast and as a result have gotten out of debt and become better managers of their money and finances. The 21-Day Financial Fast is great for earners at any income-level or stage of life, whether you are living paycheck-to-paycheck or just trying to make smarter financial choices.

My Take: 

I am a Dave Ramsey fan all the way, so most of what was in this book was a repeat of his ideas and plans. What really stuck with me was about the author's friend who passed away. When they went in to deal with the paperwork after her death, everything was organized and in order. She had her will, bills, life insurance policies well organized and filed, so anyone could find it and follow her system. While my husband and I live on a budget and are working to pay off all our debt, being organized is one area that I fall short in. It is funny, I was the church administrator for  7 years and kept records. I now manage my best friend's accounting since she has ALS and keep her records in shape, but doing it here at home is something that I need to get organized. If you are looking to organize your finances and get your life back, stop living paycheck to paycheck, check out this book. Now off to start organizing my disaster of a desk! 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

5 things I wish people wouldn't ask about foster kids....

  1.  Are all those your kids? Yes, they are all mine. Just like the students in my classroom were my kids for the time that they were in my class, these kids are mine. I may not have given birth to them, but I love them like my daughter to which I did give birth.
  2. What did their parents do to have these kids come to live with you? My nice answer is that the parents have some issues to work on. But I can't tell you the details. The details of their case is protected under the law. Often I am not given a full account of why they were taken away. Social workers paint the case with broad strokes. Drugs, violence, abuse, neglect, mental illness and sexual abuse are all reasons for kids to be taken out from their biological parents. Often it is not just one of these reasons, but a laundry list of issues. 
  3. How long are they going to be with you? We don't know that. Some kids stay a month or two. Other kids will be with us for a year. It all depends of their family, the social workers, CASA workers, attorneys, and judge.
  4. Don't they have relatives who could take them? Why aren't they with a family member? The process for a family member to take them into care is similar to what my husband and I did to become foster parents. It is not automatic that if the biological parents are unfit, that the children will go to the biological grandparents or aunts and uncles. Often there is no one in the biological family willing or able to take care of the children. In any case, the family members must attend classes, fill out a ton of paperwork, be fingerprinted, and have their home inspected before they can have the children come to live with them. 
  5. Are you going to adopt them? Please don't ask this in front of the children. Yes, we want to provide a forever home for a child, but we are foster parents first. The parents have a year or longer to get the kids back, so my husband and I are not even contemplating adoption until we know for sure that the children will be open for adoption. We don't want to break their hearts by making promises that we don't know that we can keep. There are lots of factors to consider when adopting. When it is right and we know that we are going to adopt, we will announce it. Until then, we aren't going to discuss it.