Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Before You Leave: Last Minute Travel Checklist

Getting ready to take a vacation or travel away from home for more than a week? Invariably, we all tend to forget to do one or two things before we leave home, that we can never seem to relax about until we return. To make your travel plans stress free, here's a few things you might want to consider adding to your checklist of things to do before you go:
  • Notify a trusted neighbor, relative or friend of your travel plans, including your route to travel, destination and scheduled day to return.
  • Secure your home. Make sure all doors and windows are locked, including your garage, shed and any other outbuildings.
  • Unplug small appliances.
  • Remove any food from the fridge that will go bad before you return.
  • Remove any vegetables or fruit in a fruit bowl, on the counter, or window sill. Overripe or rotting fruits and vegetables will not only begin to smell, but attract insects as well.
  • Water your houseplants, garden and lawn. If you've arranged for someone to water for you while you're gone, be sure to leave a note telling them the last time you watered.
  • Adjust the thermostat or turn off completely.
  • Take out the trash.
  • Turn off the lights or set them on timers to only come on for a brief period at night.
Taking a few moments to go through your last minute travel checklist will not only keep your home safer while you're away, it'll give you the peace of mind you need to truly enjoy your trip.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Exploring New Ways to Earn a Living

I keep running into people that seem to be at a crossroads, trying to figure out which path should they choose when it comes to earning a living. Like myself, many are diversifying into areas that they might not have considered a few years ago, when the economy (at least on the employment side) felt a bit less fragile. But now, with so many unemployed, the focus is on finding ways to earn a living that provides NOW... not 8-10 years down the road. For some, that may be opening a franchise, or going back to school to gain a certificate or degree in a new field. For others, it may be turning a part-time hobby or business like selling handmade items on Etsy.com or selling collectibles on eBay into a full-time venture.

Here's a few resources for those that may be at the crossroads:

The Top 5 Fastest Growing Job Markets Without a Four-Year Degree

The Top 5 Franchises to Own

The Restaurant Manager's Handbook: How to Set Up, Operate, and Manage a Financially Successful Food Service Operation 4th Edition - With Companion CD-ROM

Seven Ways to Make Extra Money in 2011 -U.S. News/Yahoo! Finance

Dream Jobs: Six-Figure Salaries and a Bright Future - MoneyWatch