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No matter how far along I get in life, I'll always refer to myself as "That chick that grew up poor in the drug-filled streets of Port Arthur, Texas." Always a bad ass!

Right now, I'm going through a top-down transformation. I'm starting with my hair - taking it from processed to natural; and so far I'm loving it. Get updates on my process on newtonatural.com.

Monday, August 18, 2014

More than a third of American adults have no retirement savings: I'm One

When I clicked on the LA Times article link, there was my story, headlined on the web page in like 40 pixel font.

36% of adults lack retirement savings -- 14% of them 65 or over

No. I'm not 65 or older, but when I transitioned from Arkansas to Mississippi, I blew through my IRA. It was a really scary decision. But I think it was still a good one. But every day, as I work to re-build it, I spend a lot of time thinking about what's the right investment amount for me right now.

I'm almost 40. So I can pretty much HEAR the clock ticking down to when I retire . loudly.

And I was doing so well at one time. I didn't start until I was twenty-five, but I was able to save a really large lump sum. Then, I had a really terrible break up from my ex and had to cash out my IRA so I didn't lose my home and could purchase a new car to replace the car I lost in the break up.

After I got hit with the tax penalty, I told myself I would never again cash out my retirement savings prior to retirement. Thus the reason they recommend you never say never.

Another catastrophe to avert. Another cash out.

Well, it is what it is. And now, I'm re-building along with other regular people who are recovering from similar set backs. Here we go.

Read the LA Times article. It's interesting enough.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Sorry Business Owners and Drug Sellers Are All the Same

After leaving Home Depot, I drove down State Street into Jackson to see if I could find a store that sold black hair products without having to go to the other side of town or shop at a big box store, and Voila! I found one that had a really friendly staff that helped me find everything I needed. Wooohooo.

On my way there, I passed a Texaco that had gas for $3.06 and made a mental note to myself to stop and address my gas light that was on while I was en route to the hair products store.

After I paid for my gas at the pump, I decided to go into the store to get a beverage - because I had just filled up in 98 degree weather and didn't think I'd make it all the way back to work without something cool.

I went into the store - passed 4 open coolers in the very front that were filled with huge cans of beer. . I went to the back of the store and scanned the refrigerated drinks hoping to find a Lipton Diet Green Tea. But no luck. So, I decided to settle for any green tea. . But no luck. So, I decided to just pick a tea.. But again no luck.

Now, this Texaco was really large, so it took me a moment to figure out what the problem was. . Once I did, it made me really sad. . then angry.

Not including the open coolers that were in the front of the store, there were 12 vertical refrigerators filled with cold beverages. One was filled with different kinds of water. One was filled with soft drinks and juices. And TEN were filled with beer and different kinds of alcohol.

I went to the front of the store and asked to speak to the owner, who was standing nearby. I told the guy, "You have NO tea in the entire store. That's so weird." He looked at me, smiled, and said, "Hmmm. Ok."

I said, "I have never seen such a disproportionate amount of alcohol sold in a convenient store. There's almost nothing else."

And this fool looked at me, smiled, and asked, "Do you even know where you are?"

I walked closer to him and said, "Yes, I'm in Jackson. I live here. Do you?" And he said, "HELL no!"

I was so disgusted; partly because I realized that I had just patronized this fool's store by purchasing gas.

Jackson, MS has its issues. There's no denying it. But the average person values the area they live in because there really is a lot of pride in city. I haven't even lived here long, and I already share it.

Business owners like this one, in ANY city, are no better than the gang bangers and crack sellers on the street because they mean no good for the city or the people in it. I will NEVER shop at the Texaco on State Street again. And I will make sure I tell everyone that I talk to how this business owner really thinks of Jackson, Mississippi.