What I Want to Give My Daughter for Father’s Day

June 16, 2015 Permalink
via stockmonkeys.com

via stockmonkeys.com

I’m going to a baseball game with my family and some friends on Father’s Day, so my 10-year-old daughter is essentially off the hook for getting me a gift since I’ll be happy enough if she can sit through a game. She’s not a fan.

And while I’m not shelling out $50 to the Oakland A’s so I can play catch with her on the field after the game — a Father’s Day ripoff I’ve already written about — there’s some financial advice I want to give her on this day in June to remind her how important she is to me and some of my hopes for her.

College fund

My wife and I set up a college education fund within a month of her birth that we contribute to monthly.

When she does go to college, I hope she uses the money well, works summers to supplement it, and doesn’t have to take out student loans or work much while in college. Years of debt shouldn’t be the price of an education. Hopefully, we’ve helped make her financial life during and after college a bit easier.

A savings account

She also has a savings account where most of the money she receives for birthdays, Christmas and other events is kept. I hope she becomes a saver and always has an emergency fund and travel fund moving in the right directions.

A well-paying, fun job

I don’t know what career path she’ll eventually choose, but I hope it’s one she chooses because she’s great at it and enjoys it. I didn’t choose journalism for the high pay, but it’s a job I fully enjoy.

A college education is likely to help her more than anything to get there. And a job in the public sector may be even better, according to a study by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.

Are You 50% Done With Your 2015 Goals?

June 4, 2015 Permalink

goalsIf you can believe it, 2015 is almost 50% over already! Yowza!! When did that happen?

If you are anything like me, you set some lofty goals for the year: for your life, your finances, and everything else.

My goals list for 2015 included things like:

  • Pay off $5,000 of debt (principal).
  • Reach $1,500 of emergency fund savings.
  • Attend FinCon15 and pay in cash.
  • Paint my home office.
  • Declutter some books.
  • Limit my spending on clothes.
  • Quit my full-time job by the end of the year.

Even with some pretty exciting, fun, and scary goals on that list, I still had a lot of other things in mind that I also wanted to accomplish in 2015.

Some of them are little things which is why they didn’t make it on the list, and others are things like have more time to spend with my family, friends, and pets, which is part of the motivation behind me accomplishing the goals on my 2015 list.

Personally, I think goals are great to have. They keep you motivated and focused on what matters, at least as long as you go about setting them correctly.

Sometimes goals have to be changed before they are met. For instance, last year I had to reduce one of my goals because there was NO WAY I was going to make it, which made it depressing instead of motivating. This year I had to scratch one off the list. (If you can’t guess which one, you must be living under a rock, haha.) After only about 3 months I had already completely failed at my goal of limiting my clothes spending for the year to a certain threshold. But ever since I scratched it off the list, I’ve actually done better at limiting my spending on fashion.

Anyway, the point of this post isn’t to argue about if you should set goals or not (which you totally should in my opinion) but instead to point out that we are nearly 50% through the year. This means you should be nearly 50% through your goals.

If you are way too far ahead or behind of the 50% mark, now is the time to re-asses not only your goals by why you set them in the first place.

When you asses your goals and progress and you find you are way off, here’s what you should do:

5 Upgrades for Your TV Stand

May 31, 2015 Permalink

Linear actuators have a broad range of applications in the home system. The linear translation may be critical in ensuring comfort and easy performance of the intended action. A television stand is usually a static platform where the television is placed. A linear actuator can transform your platform from a static firmware to a modest stand performing a broad range of actions.

Feasible upgrades on a traditional television stand usually include:

  1. Providing a firm base where the television will be firmly fixed
  2. Add some extra storage beneath the platform for the decoder and other compatible hardware
  3. Manage your cables
  4. Integrate a linear actuator
  5. Integrate a rotary system that allows inclination of the platform but up to the recommended angle (maximum should be about 120)

Providing a Firm Base

image-3The firm base will secure the television on the platform reducing the risks of either a slip due to vibration or change of inclination by the rotary system; the television can be secured by use of bolts and nuts which can be painted with the same color as the platform to conceal their presence.

Managing Your Cables

image-2The cables for the various peripherals should be bundled together and circlipped to appropriate location on the stand. Guideways for the bundled cables can be created for a nice organization.

Extra storage can be added for other peripherals like the decoder and the audio system as this would help in the organization of this components though the speakers can be placed at different locations.

Integrating a Linear Actuator

imgage-1Lift for TV (linear actuator) can be integrated to the stand so as to control the height of the platform; this gives you the comfort to manage the position you would like to view your television providing a sense of better comfort and control. Also, these linear actuators (particularly the mechanical type) can be remotely controlled so that you would not have to adjust manually the height of the stand or platform.

Integrating a Rotary System that Allows Inclination of the Platform but up to the Recommended Angle

image1The rotary system, on the other hand, provides you the range of viewing angles and the suitable inclinations. The illumination in a place may vary depending on the position of lighting so you would have to adjust the viewing position to face away from the source of illumination and the inclination angle for better viewing.


 The installations of these modifications or upgrades on the television stand will improve the level of comfort when viewing the television.