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mailNewsletter 57 | October 2017 | Archives | Services






so very thankful

11/23/17 Thanksgiving: What are you thankful for?

Tucked between the two monster sized holidays of Halloween and Christmas, Thanksgiving receives far less attention. But Thanksgiving is a very important holiday, especially in the busy lives of Americans. It is a time to kick back and relax, watch a football game or go to a movie, and enjoy a huge feast. It's also time for us to give thanks to our God, for the things he has bestowed upon us and upon this great nation. There is no nation in the world that has more to be thankful for than us.








·         Bankable Hobbies

Bankable Hobbies

Did you know the average American adult spends just 37 minutes a day preparing meals?1 With more two-income families today, the art of home cooking, baking, carefully preparing family recipes and multicourse meals appears to have gone by the wayside for many. But must it?

Where there is a void in the market, savvy entrepreneurs find a way to fill it. Given the dying art of traditional skilled crafts -- home cooking, cabinetry, sewing, canning, etc. -- it seems it may be a natural fit for retirees to apply their experience and skills to overburdened families. Something to consider: there are young professionals with children who need help putting a healthy meal on the table every night, while there are many retirees who miss cooking for others. Busy professionals who love the look and feel of hand-crafted furniture may be willing and able to pay top dollar for a carefully honed rocking chair for their newborn’s nursery. Older adults may even hire out their services to help out young families.

Naturally, there are plenty of logistical issues associated with selling goods and services, just as with any new business. It’s a good idea to start small; perhaps you could offer to prepare a meal for a harried neighbor or friend a couple of days a week. That could lead to referrals and more business.

When you earn income through a hobby, you may need to pay taxes if you earn more than a certain amount each year. However, you may be able to deduct related expenses – such as expensive tools or kitchenware that help you in your trade. This information is not intended to provide tax advice. If you have questions about your tax situation, we are happy to refer you to a qualified tax professional.

1 Karen Hamrick. Amber Waves. U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service. Nov. 7, 2016. “Americans Spend an Average of 37 Minutes a Day Preparing and Serving Food and Cleaning Up.” Accessed July 20, 2017.

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·         The Nature of Risk and Reward

The Nature of Risk and Reward

Every investment carries some risk. However, it’s a misnomer to think that the bigger the risk you take, the bigger the reward you’ll receive. This may be especially true for those who are near or already in retirement.

Consider the story of the tortoise and the hare. The tortoise pursued a slow but steady pace to the finish line, while the hare took off at breakneck speed but got waylaid and finished behind the tortoise. It may be a fable, but investments can work the same way – particularly for pre-retirees who start making larger contributions to retirement investment accounts after they’ve bought their homes, raised their kids and paid for college. However, assuming higher risk may not be the best way to make up for lost time. Just because you start late doesn’t mean you should sprint to the finish.

For example, let’s say investors A and B each invest $100,000 for five years. Investor A earns 7 percent for four years on her moderate growth portfolio, then only 1 percent in the fifth year, for a total of $132,391. Investor B invests more aggressively for a 10 percent return in each of the first four years, but his portfolio return drops to a negative 10 percent in the final year. He ends up with $131,769. Not only does investor B take on more risk, but he ends up with less money than investor A. Investor A receives essentially the same return on her investment without as much concern for loss, because she has taken less risk.

Pre-retirees may be tempted to invest in riskier assets with the potential for higher returns because they need their portfolio to yield a certain amount of money to reach retirement goals. However, a higher average annual return usually means exposure to more risk, and this may not be the optimal way to achieve your financial goals.

Depending on your retirement goals, slow and steady can help get you where you need to go with less concern for volatility with investments. We can help you determine your capacity for risk and then work with you to create a financial plan that takes into account your tolerance for risk.

This hypothetical example does not represent any product and is for illustrative purposes only. It should not be deemed a representation of past or future results, and is no guarantee of return or future performance.

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·         Losing a Furry Friend

Losing a Furry Friend

Many of us rely on the unconditional love and support of a pet, and the sadness we feel when we lose one can be devastating. But because the process for how we mourn the loss of a pet is quite different from that of a person, our coping mechanisms can be hindered.

For example, we as a society do not have a widely accepted formal process to acknowledge the passing of an animal, such as a funeral or burial ceremony. With a person, this kind of an event recognizes the value of the deceased and his or her impact on others, and enables a mourning process with a distinct beginning and end. Not so for a pet. Whether a pet is cremated or buried, there is seldom a formal ceremony shared by others, and for many, the bereavement process can be very lonely.

In fact, family and friends may not fully appreciate the sense of loss that comes with the death of a pet. They may express condolences but often expect us to move on much more quickly than we would with a person. However, some people share a deeper connection with a beloved pet than with others; it is an unspoken bond that may be underappreciated until it is gone. This is particularly true for seniors who live alone, and, unfortunately, this bond cannot be replaced by simply getting another pet. At least not for some time.

The following tips may help you or someone you know cope with the loss of a beloved pet:1

    • Recognize that it is normal to experience deep grief over the loss of a pet. Allow yourself the time to mourn the loss; it is important to transition through the various stages of grief, much as you would for a person.
    • Reach out to others who have experienced similar loss to share your feelings. Veterinary schools and local animal shelters often have support resources such as self-help groups or support hotlines to help you share, cope and move on. Online forums also can help.
    • While grieving, try to focus on maintaining your daily and weekly personal and professional activities.
    • Incorporate activities you enjoy into your daily regimen.
    • Discover ways to grieve productively, such as writing a journal or making a scrapbook or photo album about your pet.

1 David R. Topor. Harvard Health Publications. June 22, 2017. “Coping with the loss of a pet.” Accessed Aug. 18, 2017.

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·         Quote of the Month

Quote of the Month

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apple pie

Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Apple Cheesecake Pie


Crust and Topping:

1 pouch (1 lb 1.5 oz) Betty Crocker™ sugar cookie mix

1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon

½ cup butter, softened

1 tablespoon butter, melted


1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

¼ cup sugar

1 tablespoon Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 egg

1 ¼ cups apple pie filling with more fruit, chopped (from 21-oz can)

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Step One:

Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 9-inch glass pie plate with shortening.

Step Two:

In large bowl, stir together cookie mix and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Add 1/2 cup softened butter; mix with pastry blender or fork until crumbly. Press half (about 2 cups) of the crumbly mixture in bottom and up side of pie plate. Bake 10 minutes.

Step Three:

Meanwhile, add 1 tablespoon melted butter to remaining crumbly mixture; toss to combine. In medium bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add sugar and flour; blend well. Add vanilla and egg; beat until smooth. In another small bowl, mix apple pie filling and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.

Step Four:

Spread cream cheese mixture in cookie crust. Spoon apple pie filling over cream cheese mixture. Distribute crumbly mixture over top of pie.

Step Five:

Bake 33 to 38 minutes or until top of pie is golden brown. Cool 1 hour. Refrigerate at least 3 hours before serving. Cover and refrigerate any remaining pie.





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