Amber Alert

Family Minute #44

Are you ready to celebrate Grandparents Day?

Grandparents Day is this Sunday. Grandparents play a vital role in our families – in fact, one in 10 kids is raised by grandparents, and that figure has risen over recent years. Help your kids honor their grandparents. Structure the day around their grandparents’ pleasures – cook their favorite meal, take part in their favorite activities, and ask them to share pictures and stories from their lives.

Show grandparents how much you appreciate them.

Remember your family first.

Thought of the Day - 9/5/08

When a child goes to school, he takes his parents with him in the form of their discipline, their expectations, and their values. Regardless of how often you visit your child's school, you are there every day.

Clutter For a Cause

Donating to charity is a win-win situation. You'll turn a chore into a feel-good mission (and possibly get a tax break). While Goodwill, the Salvation Army, and the American Red Cross are great places to donate most items, consider these outside-the-donation- box ways to get rid of space-hoggers.

Winter Coats - One Warm Coat
Donate them to One Warm Coat which sponsors coat drives around the country.

Musical Instruments - Operation Happy Note
From piccolos to guitars, Operation Happy Note sends secondhand instruments to soldiers deployed overseas.

Computer Equipment - The On It Foundation
Computers with at least a Pentium III Processor can be donated to the On It Foundation, which provides computers and Internet access to low-income families.

Books - International Book Project
The International Book Project will ship your old books for use in schools, orphanages, and libraries all around the world.

Sneakers - Let Me Play
Old sneakers (the rubber part) is used to create play surfaces for kids around the world.

Furniture - Help 1 Up
The NFBA (National Furniture Bank Association) will give your couch and other furniture to anyone who needs it including domestic violence victims.

Cell Phones - Collective Good
At Collective Good, you choose the charity, such as the Center for Domestic Violence Prevention, that your donation of a used phone will support.

Random Knickknacks - Excess Access
Got something you don't know what to do with, but you're sure someone would want? Excess Access matches your items with local nonprofit wish lists.

Thought of the Day - 9/4/08

It Takes Time

It take a full season for fruit to mature and ripen...

Although God could instantly transform us...
He prefers to work in incremental steps in our lives.

God began doing a good work in you. He will continue it until it is finished. Philippians 1:6

Thought of the Day - 9/3/08

Live as if you were to die tomorrow.
Learn as if you were to live forever.
~~ Mahatma Gandhi ~~

Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen.
~~ Michael Jordan ~~

I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.
~~ Maya Angelou ~~

I never regret anything. Because every little detail of your life is what made you into who you are in the end.
~~ Drew Barrymore ~~

If you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain.
~~ Dolly Parton ~~

How wrong it is for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself.
~~ Anasis Nin ~~

Reprint from

Thought of the Day - 9/2/08

Motivation comes from doing, not thinking.

The longer you sit and think about doing something, the harder it becomes to do it. If you think too much, excuses may paralyze you.

Today is your day to stop thinking and start doing!

When you start doing something, positive energy flows and you become more motivated. Don't think about how you're going to exercise; just put on your running shoes and run. Don't think about how you'll learn a new skill some day; go out and sign up for a course, right now.

Stop procrastinating! Start doing! You'll find a motivation that can change your life!

What are you going to do today?

Family Minute #43

Do you know the real meaning behind Labor Day?

We all enjoy a day off, but many people overlook the meaning of the holiday. Labor Day celebrates the contributions workers have made to the strength and well-being of our country. Use Labor Day to reward your kids with a special family outing to celebrate their efforts and accomplishments at home, in school, in extracurricular activities, and at work.

Emphasize working hard, taking pride in what they do, and working well with others.

Remember your family first.

Make Me Laugh Monday - No Sex Tonight

I never quite figured out why the sexual urge of men and women differ so much. I never have figured out the whole Venus and Mars thing. I have never figured out why men think with their head and women with their heart.

One evening last week, my girlfriend and I were getting into bed. Well, the passion starts to heat up, and she eventually says "I don't feel like it, I just want you to hold me."

I said "What?! What was that?!"

She says the words that every boyfriend on the planet dreads to hear... "You're just not in touch with my emotional needs as a woman enough for me to satisfy your physical needs as a man." She responded to my puzzled look by saying, "Can't you just love me for who I am and not what I do for you in the bedroom?"

Realizing that nothing was going to happen that night, I went to sleep.

The next day I opted to take the day off of work to spend time with her. We went out to a nice lunch and then went shopping at a big unnamed department store. I walked around with her while she tried on several different very expensive outfits. She couldn't decide which one to take so I told her we'd just buy them all. She wanted new shoes to compliment her new clothes, so I said lets get a pair for each outfit. We went onto the jewelry department where she picked out a pair of diamond earrings. Let me tell you...she was so excited. She was almost nearing sexual satisfaction from all of the excitement.

Smiling with excited anticipation she finally said, "I think this is all, dear, let's go to the cashier."

I could hardly contain myself when I blurted out, "No honey, I don't feel like it." Her face just went completely blank as her jaw dropped with a baffled look.

I then said, "Honey! I just want you to hold this stuff for a while. You're just not in touch with my financial needs as a man enough for me to satisfy your shopping needs as a woman."

And just when she had this look like she was going to kill me, I added, "Why can't you just love me for who I am and not for the things I buy you?"

Apparently, I'm not having sex tonight either.

Please join the fun and share the laughter by posting a link to today's individual Make Me Laugh Monday post (and not to the front page of your blog).

Life is Short

Joseph loved, honored, and respected his father, so he introduced his father to Pharaoh. This most powerful man in the world, Pharaoh, asked Jacob a common question, "How old are you?" Jacob was an old man who lived a hard life. It was right for Pharaoh to admire him.

Jacob counted the length of his life in days. But a day is short, it ends quickly. Yet, we can live only one day at a time. All our days add up to a lifetime. Even though Jacob had lived for 130 years, he said his days were few. This means that life just doesn't last long enough.

Jacob told Pharaoh that his life was a pilgrimage (a journey or trip to someplace very special). He saw himself as a stranger in this world. He was traveling to his real home in God. This earth was like a hotel to Jacob. It was not his home. This is true of all people who have come to know God as Jacob did. We are sojourners. That means we are not here to stay. We will only live a short time and then spend forever with God in Heaven!

Next time, you hear yourself complaining about how short life is remember that life here on earth is temporary. This life is just the beginning. We are here a short time -- a very short time -- but to balance our short life on earth we have a long life waiting for us in God, in Heaven if we just believe!

Based on the scripture Genesis 47.

Where I've Been

Blog Tag

4 jobs I've had in my life:
1. Cryptanalyst and Personnel Administrative Specialist for the Army
2. Owner and Director of a daycare center
3. Teacher and Counselor
4. Mom

4 movies I could watch over and over:
1. Pretty Woman
2. Independance Day
3. Any and all of the Harry Potter movies
4. American President

4 places I've lived:
1. Erie, PA
2. Louisville, KY
3. Ft. Dix, NJ
4. Butler, PA

4 TV shows I love to watch:
1. CSI: Miami
2. Desperate Housewives
3. (reruns of) Murder, She Wrote
4. Grey's Anatomy
There are many more but only four for today.

4 websites I visit daily:
1. 12 Months of Christmas
3. Christmas to the Max
4. My Yahoo

4 of my favorite foods:
1. French bread pizza
2. Chocolate
3. My mother's pot roast, shoepeg corn, mashed potatoes & gravy... yummo!
4. My friend Jonel's potato salad

4 places I'd rather be right now:
1. In bed (sleeping)
2. New York City
3. Cuddling with my children
4. Getting a massage

Now your it! Please share your answers or a link to your blog.

Reprint from 3/18/07.

What Kind of Flower Are You?

I am a

What Flower
Are You?

Personal Mission Statement

My personal mission statement:

  • I will always seek to improve the depth and quality of my relationships in my personal and professional life.
  • I will never be afraid to stand up for what I believe is right.
  • I will be committed to lifelong learning and self improvement.
  • I will seek to treat others as I would wish to be treated.
  • I will not take myself too seriously and will have a life filled with laughter and fun.
  • I will be committed to seek the wisdom of my Lord, my Savior to be a better Christian.

What is your personal mission statement? Please share here.


Neuroblastoma is a cancer that primarily affects children. It begins in the nerve tissue in the neck, chest, abdomen, or pelvis. It usually originates in the abdomen in the tissues of the adrenal gland. By the time it is diagnosed, the cancer often has spread, most commonly to the lymph nodes, liver, lungs, bones, and/or bone marrow. Neuroblastoma is one of the most common solid tumours of early childhood usually found in babies or young children.

For more information about Elijah, please visit his web page at

To see a scrapbook page I made in honor of Elijah go to 365 Days of Memories.

Be Paid What You're Really Worth

I asked more than 150 high-earning women, "Are you doing this for the money?" The overwhelming response was a definite no. What drove them were passion, recognition, challenge and independence. At the same time, they wanted to be well-compensated, because they felt they were worth it.

But that's not the case with most of us. We instinctively devalue ourselves. Those little voices in our heads insist: "Who do you think you are? No one's going to pay you that much." And I'm convinced self-depreciation goes right to the heart of our financial ruts.

You can easily learn negotiation techniques and assertiveness skills by taking courses or reading books. But the truth is this: If you're going to command more money, you have to truly believe you're worth it. Without that conviction, we lack the confidence to take a strong stand and the certitude to convince others. People always respond to our vibes far more than our words.

Many six-figure women admitted questioning their own value. Yet they didn't let that stop them. These women built their confidence like weightlifters build muscles -- by continually pushing themselves to take a stand, ask for more, demand what they're worth and say no when appropriate despite their trepidation.

Confidence-Building Tips

This advice directly from these women will help you pump up your self-worth along with your net worth:

Think Big, Then Think Even Bigger
Most of us, especially women, unwittingly limit our earnings by lowering our expectations. Even in studies where women are trained in negotiation strategies, they set their sights lower and end up with less money than men. The idea is to value yourself fairly compared to others in your field or at your level.

Do Your Research
One of the worst negotiating mistakes people make is picking a random number and then discovering it was way too low. The smarter ones avoid that pitfall by doing their homework. They discover their market value by researching going rates, and then asking for more than what's offered to give themselves wiggle room.

Quantify Your Value
You can counter the tendency to downplay yourself by presenting tangible evidence of what you bring to the table. Maybe you saved your company $X or had an idea that generated so many sales. Keep a file of everything you've done. Don't wait for your review. Go in and ask for work, ask for responsibility, ask for challenge. Let your supervisor know exactly where your sights are set. Taking initiative is an effective means of demonstrating your value and intentions to an organization.

Practice Daily Affirmations
These positive statements are expressed as if they've already happened. Two examples: "I have the confidence to ask for what I want." "I welcome more money in my life." Write your affirmations down. Post them where you can see them easily. Say them out loud, as often as possible. As one affirmation enthusiast told me, "The more often I hear the words coming out my mouth, the more I internalize it, and the more my psyche knows it's going to happen."

Challenge Yourself in Areas Outside Your Job
Stretching yourself in any area of life has a ripple effect. If you can't quite get yourself to ask for a raise, try signing up for an art class or running a marathon. Anything that puts you out of your comfort zone builds confidence and self-worth.

Fake Confidence If Necessary
Asking for top dollar takes a lot of nerve, which most of us won't feel at the time. But that doesn't mean you can't fake it. Even six-figure women have doubted their worth, but they appear undaunted. Acting as if you're confident is a surefire antidote for weak knees, a pounding heart or a deflated ego. Besides, when you act as if you're worth a lot, you'll eventually convince yourself as well as others.

By practicing these tips, you'll begin to notice a shift in how you feel about yourself. Making more money becomes not something you should do, but something you have to do -- because you know in your heart you're worth it.

Adapted from Be Paid What You're Really Worth by Barbara Stanny

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