Insight News

Thursday
Apr 24th

Lifestyle

The things every child should know about chores and homework

The things every child should know about chores and homeworkI don’t know what’s happening at your house right now, but it feels like our family of five is moving 100 mph, and we are only a few weeks into the new school year! This year, two of our three children changed schools and statuses: Our oldest daughter started high school as a ninth grader, and our youngest daughter began middle school as a sixth grader. Our second grade son happily returned to the school he attended last year. Thankfully, everyone seems to be adjusting well.

That is, almost everyone. Every time I think about the fact that I have three kids in three different schools-that are not particularly close to one another-I feel a slight twinge of anxiety. (This is definitely one of the downsides to having your children spaced too far apart in age!) I have recurring nightmares about the kiddos forgetting their major school projects at home (all on the same day) and needing them delivered (all at precisely the same time) to avoid a failing grade. To keep that type of drama to a minimum, I decided it was a good time to review the family chore schedule and tighten it up. I realize that training children, of all ages, to value an orderly living space is an important component in having success at school, work, and in every area of life. In addition, fewer piles of clutter mean fewer places for homework assignments to get lost (or be left), right?
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Coupons, Discount Clubs, Rewards…Oh My!


Coupons, Discount Clubs, Rewards…Oh My!
I just finished tucking my Sally Beauty 20% Discount Coupon in my official coupon pouch. I usually go to Sally’s for hair products, so I joined their frequent shopper club. Although they “sell” you the membership for $5, it’s essentially free because they give you a $5 certificate to use the following month. In addition, you receive monthly discount coupons and other perks.

I am feeling so proud of myself these days. See, I used to be one of those folks who clipped coupons every Sunday, but never had them on hand when I got to the checkout register. Those days are over! Now I am always ready to save money, even on impromptu shopping trips because I carry my handy coupon pouch in my purse at all times (bonus: it’s a repurposed clear, zippered pouch, so I can easily see inside to be certain I have all my coupons). It has become as important as my wallet.
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What happens in Vegas…Can be pretty cheap

What happens in Vegas…Can be pretty cheapWhile my husband and I are not into casino gambling --it goes against our laws of penny-pinching-- we do, however, really like to snag a deal wherever it may be found. This time we happened to find one we could not pass up in Vegas. We just returned from our first official family vacation and had a wonderful time. To be honest, it was not our intention to head west, but it turns out that this was the best online deal out there (and not that much more expensive than heading up to Brainerd and other popular Minnesota vacation destinations). So if you are looking for a family-friendly getaway that is relatively easy on the wallet, then Viva Las Vegas!

This was supposed to be a big summer for us. Our original plan was to go to Europe, but when our plans fell through we were scrambling to come up with a vacation-plan B, to console our disappointed kids (and their even more disappointed parents). Not wanting to spend oodles of cash-still planning to do Europe next year-we began looking online at cool places in Minnesota that we could reach by car. We were quite surprised at the cost of many of these Minnesota hot spots, and even more surprised to find a lot of them booked solid! That’s when we made the crucial decision to expand our search.
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Time for a Change-Simple and Cheap Ways To Update


Time for a Change-Simple and Cheap Ways To Update
Are you ready for a change in your home décor? With autumn around the corner, that’s always my cue to do something new. Play around with simple, low-cost ideas and you can breathe new life into your home.

Change the flow of your home by rearranging the furniture. Take the furniture off the wall and don’t be afraid to float your sofa in the center of the room. Make sure that the seating arrangement invites intimate communication without having to yell across the room.

Display your very favorite items. What good does it do for you to keep your favorite vacation or heirloom treasures wrapped in plastic and tucked away in the closet? Take them out and proudly show off the things that you really like. Whether it’s a special vase or a dainty dish, simply select a safe display spot, and you will be guaranteed to smile each time you pass by it.
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A back to school essential wisdom

A back to school essential wisdom“Have you started/finished your school shopping yet?” Most likely you have either asked or been asked that question by now. With the start of school around the corner for most kids, it’s an obvious question. School supply lists are now posted everywhere-at schools, on their websites, and at local stores. Retailers are featuring special sales and coupons for everything from underwear to winter coats. Yet, there is one essential back-to-school supply that isn’t sold in stores. It’s wisdom. New notebooks, pencils, and school clothes mean nothing if we send our kids off to school without challenging them to do their best; listen to and respect the school staff, put forth their best effort, and avoid trouble (and trouble-makers). Let’s get the school year off to a good start by reviewing a few aspects of wisdom. After all, it’s the most important tool for school and for life.
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Save money - Buy less

Save money - Buy lessLast Night I stayed up too late watching the addicting cable television show, “Clean House”. Hosted by the quick-witted actress, comedienne, Miss Niecy Nash, the show sets out to rescue homeowners from overflowing clutter that has taken over their homes-and their lives. The families apparently struggle with buying and hoarding, regardless of whether or not they need it. Although your home may not be a candidate for the “Clean House” show (yet), most of us have been guilty of buying things we don’t really need or want. If left unchecked, this issue can turn your home into a dumping ground, and drain your bank account and your peace. Here are a few money-saving (and common sense) questions to ask yourself before hitting the stores and bringing more stuff into your living space.
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Learning to Stay: The 12 Keys

Learning to Stay: The 12 Keys“Learning to Stay is a book of self-discovery, change, growth and transitions. It’s intended to restore your mind and relationships to wholeness, thus creating harmony and peace within your soul… Through personal development and mentorship, I’ve discovered ways to change my limiting beliefs that manifested through undesirable behaviors. .. My passion is to prove that anyone, no matter who you are, can change and be a whole person.” -- Excerpted from the Introduction (pgs. 1-3)

Over the past couple of years, I’ve literally been inundated with books offering dating advice to the African-American community. I suppose this cottage industry of love gurus has sprung up in response to a need for more stable relationships, evidenced by the fact that over 80% of black kids are currently being raised in single parent households. Some of the authors have been credentialed therapists, others simply self-appointed survivors of the battle-of-the-sexes now ready to recount how they found fulfillment in a lurid tell-all.
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