Money Lessons

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I had so much to learn about money and how to make it work for me. Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

I came home from visiting Noel to find everyone in the kitchen cooking. We got to talking and after I told them about the incident that happened while I was as Noel’s. It prompted a lesson about money and how to make it work for you. The conversation had the children’s full attention and when we sat down to dinner that was when the back and forth started.

As we settled down to dinner we continued to talk.

“So dad, explain how you made your money work for you?” urged Shane as we sat down.

“Well they are several methods,” he stated to tell us. “ Some low risk, some middle risk and others insanely high risk.”

“Which ones do you use?” asked Kyla as she poured salad cream dressing over her veggies.

Mr. Divine laughed. “All of them.”

Kyla smiled at his comment.

“I rotate my money between stock market investments, high yield accounts, money market and treasury bonds. I set money into fixed, high-interest accounts in cycles or fixed deposits.”

The kids looked at Mr. Divine confused as they waited for more of an explanation.

“So I have a business from which I get a monthly salary. From that, I established a budget. What I need to send each month to pay bills and survive and a little fun money. Then I have the money I plan to save and use for investment. I also have an emergency fund.”

As we ate he explained more. “For me, a cycle is every three months. I take the money I saved over three months then divide it into sections and invest it. Some I put into investments that mature in five years. Others go into the money market, another set into the stock market.”

The children sat there listening, and I could see Kyla had on her thinking face.

After Mr. Divine paused she started with the questions.

“So you have your investments set up that after the initial investment period you get a lump sum coming at you every three months. You can then re-invest it as is when it matures or add on money that you set aside to invest.”

Mr. Divine laughed in delight. “And you, my dear, are thinking like a successful business person.

We spent the rest of the night talking about investing and investments. How to manage them. The risks of the stock market. Making smart investments. Overextending yourself. It was an educational night. Not just for the children but for me as well.

The next day I dragged Mr. Divine with me to the bank. We looked at my account and the children’s accounts. Next, we removed three-quarters of the money from each account and make our way to the credit union and investment broker. It was time to make our money work for us.

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Discover Europe

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Artwork and architecture on a building in Milan, Italy.

Mr. Divine has brought us on a trip across the pond and when we drove out of the airport we were all smiles. Yes, the kids and I were beach babies, but we also loved to explore and discover. Right now we are in London with its blend of old and new all hidden in countless nooks and crannies just waiting to be discovered. It called to use us to explore. First, we took a tour on an opened top double-decker bus all around the city. From that, the kids took a note of the places they wanted to revisit.

 

We visited so many spots. Somehow we got in more than ten of the must see places to visit. As we bid London goodbye, Mr. Divine took a note of our sad faces.

“Don’t worry. We’ll be back again soon,” he assured us as we boarded a fast train to Scotland. When we got to Edinburgh we took in the crisp, fresh air, eager for more to discover.  We started on the Royal Mile and just rambled. After several hours we had visited The Writers’ Museum, Queen Mary’s Bath House, Scottish Storytelling Centre, Victoria Terrace and of course the Scotch Whisky Experience. The next day we took a day trip to  Loch Ness that also stopped at Glencoe and the best part is that it allowed us to discover the Highlands. The vistas we saw were truly breathtaking.

The trip didn’t end there, in fact, it had only just begun. We spent the next three weeks roaming through Europe. First, we went to Paris, then to Madrid, across to Barcelona, a stop in Marseille to see the views from the Basilique Notre – Dame de la Garde. In Monaco, we went to Jardin Exotique and Palais du Prince. We continued ongoing from one major city to the next until we had seen most of Western Europe.

We had the most amazing time on that trip and the truly amazing things we saw changed our opinions and impressions of the world. I’m sure there will be other trips like this in the near future and I can hardly wait until we all go to another. Along with the discovery and adventure, we enjoyed the togetherness and uninterrupted family time. It’s an experience we will never forget and are eager to repeat.

First Date

 

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“Mom he bought me flowers. Flowers.”  Photo by PHUOC LE on Unsplash

The young man standing in the door was a handsome boy and when he saw my daughter walking towards him he broke out into a huge smile. From behind him, he pulled out a bunch of flowers.

 

“These are for you,” he said handing my daughter a bouquet that consisted of a combination of mixed flowers.

Her smile got wider. “Thank you,” she whispered then turned to be awestruck.

“Mom he bought me flowers. Flowers.”

“Yes he did,” I said. “Let me take them and put them in water.”

Taking then I moved towards the kitchen, pleased he had made such an effort. When I brought back the flowers I placed them in the middle of the coffee table which was between Radley, Kylie and Mr. Divine who was sitting along with Radley’s father. Mr. Divine had exercised his slick investigation methods and whatever he had discovered had him smiling.

“Honey, they are going to watch ‘Wonder Woman’,” he said. “That should be interesting. I can hardly wait to hear how it was.”

By the time the conversation was completed, the decision was made that we would pick up the kids at ten o’clock to drive them home.

When they left Mr. Divine flopped back into the couch like a marionette whose strings had been cut.

“Watching her walk through that door felt like I was getting the skin ripped off my body with tweezers,” he gasped pulling me into his arms and holding me tight.

I understood his pain. “Me too. I feel like rushing out of the house to follow them.”

I laughed holding him tighter. “Please don’t put ideas into my head because I will be more than tempted to follow them.”

Getting comfortable I closed my eyes and let Mr. Divine hold me. Ten o’clock was going to take forever to come but until then I would let my little girl enjoy her first date.

Telling Them No

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‘No’ means ‘No’. Photo by Cooper Smith on Unsplash

As Kylie and I kept talking I switched to a delicate topic that needed to be addressed even if I didn’t want to bring it up.

 

“Do you remember the incident that caused us to transfer you to your new school?”

“Yes,” she whispered. It was a topic she wasn’t fond of but she knew what I had to say was important if I brought it up.

“It’s not always guys that you are not involved with that don’t understand or listen when you say no, but also some guys that you like and you go out with on a date sometimes think they have the right to take more than you are willing to offer. If you say no, say it and mean it and make sure anything you don’t like comes to a stop.”

She looked at me with wide eyes and bit her lips. “That is why we insisted you go for a refresher self-defense course. If you say no and someone does not listen. Make them understand ‘No’ means ‘No’. Don’t hesitate. Do what you must and find help at once.”

The conversation and the questions continued for the rest of our outing and by the end of it all, Kylie understood more about sex. The lies people told about it and to get it. The need to understand more about her body and the fact she should always listen to it and take note of its reactions. I explained that she had a lot to learn and I was here, ready and willing to answer any question she had.

I knew Kylie was a thinker but I was aware how easy it was for a smooth-talking boy to turn your head. After all, it happened to me. Time will tell and it is up to her. I just want her to have a better experience than me, so I’ll equip her as best I can for what may come. In this day and age it was the right thing for any responsible parent to do.

Zero Pleasure

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For every woman it is different. Photo by Ahmed Ashhaadh on Unsplash

My conversation was giving Kylie a lot more understanding about the topic of sex. She now understand it was an act but then it was also much more. For several minutes she said nothing but I could tell she was deep in thought trying to figure out what to ask me next.

“Note, guys will tell you almost anything to get you to have sex. For some of them, it’s the conquest and a lot of them will do whatever to get it.”

“Could you explain arousal. What does it feel like?”

“For every woman it is different but the best way I can describe it is a building feeling of eagerness and excitement in both your mind and your body. Also, it is important to know with every woman the degree of arousal varies. When it comes to the body most people just think the main parts, your breasts and vagina but a well-placed touch can lead to arousal. Think of your skin as one huge organ and if some you like touches you. Combined that with the right words and a woman can be aroused. It’s the concept of foreplay. Sadly it is something very few men seem to understand or have mastered, but some are improving.”

We moved around the store in silence for a bit then Kylie took up a top then turned to me. “I like this one? What do you think?”

“Try it on and we’ll see if it works.” She placed it over her hand with the other clothes she held then turned to me.

“Can I ask you a question mom. It’s about dad and my…father.” Soon after we got married the children started called Mr. Divine dad. The first time they did it the man had to fight back tears. He showed then time and again he would protect them no matter what.

“Ask away.”

“I watch you with dad now and think back to the way things used to be with my father. Why do you think he was like that? So cruel and nasty to you.”

“It could be several things. The main one I can come up with is that your father was a selfish and insecure man and the only way he could feel good about himself was to make others feel bad about themselves. He used to do that to me a lot. Make me feel like I was stupid. His aim was to have power over me. It was all about him. That is why I urge you, the day a guy makes you feel bad about yourself, leave him. Leave him at once. It is the beginning of things going from bad to worst.”

“Okay mom,” she whispered hugging me.

“If a guy doesn’t want to take the time with you it is never a good thing. If you want to go slow but he is in a hurry and wants to use guilt on you to get you to do what he wants, that is a bad sign. He does not love you. He never loved you.”

Another Happy New Year

 

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Happy New Year everyone. Photo by Laura Ockel on Unsplash

Welcome to 2018 everyone. Happy New Year. I’m getting myself ready for an excitingly busy year filled with new adventures and discoveries. As promised, I’ve got those post ready and I’ll be rolling them out each week along with other little posts about what is going on right now. Be on the lookout for another post this week and until then 🏖, 🌞 and 😃.

 

Season’s Greetings To All

 

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Merry Christmas to each and every one.

As the day dawns and my mind is instantly filling with all the things I need to get done for tomorrow, I know I must not only pause, but stop to say Season’s Greetings, Merry Christmas, Joy and Love for the season but most of all to thank you all for following my blog and being here for me. Enjoy your day and from my family to yours at this special time, 🏖, 🌞 and 😃.

 

Yes or No

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Mr. Divine made a few calls later on that night then came back to me regarding some information about the young man that had my Kylie smitten. It seems the young man was, in fact, an amazing boy, his father on the other hand, had the reputation of being a true bastard. This situation would have to be dealt with delicately.

If there was one thing I learned from being involved with Walter is that it is a dangerous thing to get into a family you are not totally comfortable with. My ex-husband had come from a secretive family that was always fighting with each other and as a result, he pulled me away from and isolated me from my family. If we allow Kylie to go out this guy, she would learn a lot about people and that all family structures and dynamics we’re not the same.

“What do you think?” Mr. Divide me as we sat on the couch.

“I want to protect my baby but if she is to go off to college I won’t be there to tell her yes or no when it comes to the boys that she meets. She tried to find out as much as she could about him which shows she is thinking rather than blind following or jumping into situations. She needs to keep growing up and discovering.”

Mr. Divine sighed and hugged me closer. “Yes, our baby is growing up, learning.”

“So yes to this date? I asked with a smile.

“Yes,” he said with a sigh. “Before that date, she has to go for a refresher self-defence course. In fact, I’m going to send a message now asking if she can be fit in for Wednesday.”

I laughed at his comment but I knew he was serious. It was better to be ready and aware that clueless and caught. Our young lady was taking another step in her development from there we’ll see what is next.

Settling Into Place

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Free and ready for whatever comes next.

From our conversation on the beach, Mr. Divine and I have been doing a lot better. That talk seemed to have opened a floodgate of conversation to make sure that we are staying on track as a couple. We sit down and just try to talk about everything as much as possible and make sure we were on the right page or just the same page about the things that might be a complication.

With Kylie enjoyed her new school and both of them studying for upcoming exams, things were settling back into a quiet state in our home. A while back Kylie had told me was interested in taking several of her exams early so she had started to do extra lessons in preparation for those exams. That had been going well and it was a major help towards her applications into university.

The children’s sporting activities have brought back up the question of the possibility of them having the opportunity to move to another country so they can further their education and ranking in the sport. We all had a long talk and the plan is to wait for Kylie’s results and see if there is any early interest from the universities that she wants to go to. Her swim coach has also been looking into scholarships at her choice universities and several other schools that would teach the courses that interest her. We would know the results in a few months and from there we would revisit the idea of moving as a family or if we would let Kylie go off on her own and have an adventure. Time would tell.

Book Review – My Favorite Husband

My Favorite Husband

When I saw the book My Favorite Husband by Pam McCutcheon all I was thinking was that no matters what I have to see how this story ends. The title had me intrigued but I started to read and the story began to unfold all I kept saying in my head was that the very thought of this situation was insane. I don’t like to give out spoilers so here is the blurb that the author has written for the book.

My Favorite Husband BlurbAfter five years of being lost in the Amazon, archaeologist Chaz Vincent has finally come home to his wife, Kelly, only to learn that she has had him declared dead. When he attends his own funeral, Chaz finds out that Kelly married another man just that morning. Now she has to choose between them. Who will be her favorite husband?

As I read more and more about Kelly as she tried to figure out which husband she was going to choose I had several laugh out loud moments. There was nothing, and I truly mean nothing, straight forward about this situation because each of these individuals seems to have more than one love interest that seems willing to go to extremes to get this guy or gal. The back and forth reactions of the characters in this story had me laughing and I enjoyed every moment I spent reading it. It’s an amazing change of pace and I strongly recommend this book.

So go on over and check out My Favorite Husband by Pam McCutcheon and see what you think about the story. You can find it on Amazon.