#Myboxatl

We’re open for business…Myboxatl is up and running. An online novelty and consignment shop.

What to expect in #MyboxAtl?

Any and everything, a mix of somethings old and somethings new. Here is my first list of items for round up:

Skateboard Decks

Atlanta is becoming more and more popular as a skateboarding scene. It’s home to many skateparks including some built by the Tony Hawk Foundation. It is also home to the Keenan Forever Foundation.

This Chocolate Skateboard – City Series – By Evan Hecox goes up for sale tonight. The deck was designed on behalf of American Skateboarding Legend and Atlanta native Keenan Milton.

Keenan got his start in skateboarding in Los Angeles and New York. Before his tragic death in 2001 Keenan traveled the world and was known for his dubious stunts and tricks (switch kickflip).

 Supreme By James JebbiaHis film credits include Yeah Right! Chocolate Tour, and Brothas From Different Mothas – Girl Mouse.

We have four of these boards remaining to sell and cost includes shipping.

Stationary & Notecards

After visiting one of my favorite consignment shops in Atlanta, I stumbled upon a really cool find, fashion statement notecards… Daily Dress.

These super fabulous notecards every Devil Wears Prada fan should carry in her back-pack. I could come up with so many great ideas. One is to frame and use them as Art Deco.

Another good use would be to send them to old friends you lost touch with to tell them about a special event you’ll be organizing. No matter what you decide just remember to have fun.

Graphic Tees

I designed my first graphic tee. Nothing to serious (or sketchy). This tee is for the ATL lover at heart I left my heart in ATL Graphic Women’s and Men’s Crew Shirt.

Dinnerware

Last but not least, I have designed what I call ATLanta Party Plates. Where would we be without a great dinner plate to serve your favorite southern dishes (e.g. deviled eggs, biscuits and gravy, shrimp and grits).

I’m certain your friends will find all of these items unique.

For more information and details visit by clicking the link here. Check weekly for updates and new products or better yet subscribe.

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The “Real” Family Feud

“All families hurt each other. Mistakes are made. Expectations unmet. Jealousies fester.”— Jay Z

The year is 2018 and I am enjoying my current life status. Times were not always like this.

In 32 days I will take on a new identity, life, and another chapter in this story book begins.

A friend close to me once said, “For every level there’s a new devil.” Very true, so true. In my early days , I grew accustom to challenges faced by lots of people.

I observed families stricken by AIDS and HIV, the crack epidemic, and poverty. There was so much that I wanted to understand at that time. For example, why certain family wasn’t welcome during the holidays, why my parents argued with their parents, and why men and women looked at the world differently.

These were not the only tragedies that took place. Somedays were filled with sporadic highs and lows.

Even my own path to being a mother and starting a family proved to be complex. It was a rite of passage into the world as I know it today.

Rumors about me never once came close to the truth but left tears and hurt my soul. Family members hatred of themselves quickly became their hatred towards me. Lies, little ones and big ones too. Needless to say I survived.

Today only scarce remnants remain of the person I once was. Folks still gossip and spread lies. People do it different these days, instead of to your face or behind your back, social media is the playground to do their dirty work.

Online platforms allow us to get to know each other in a non-consequential manner and unwarranted conclusions are drawn.

This takes me way, way back to my days as a child in the 80’s. I recall broken families. Anger and pain running through the veins of every soul around me. Hurt people hurt people. Husbands and wives cheating and children in foster care. To be honest, not much has changed.

People sometimes asks me who I think is to blame or why we still broke? As stated in Jay and Beys Family Feud:

“The wretched of the earth do not decide to become extinct, they resolve, on the contrary, to multiply: life is their only weapon against life, life is all that they have.” — James Baldwin

This makes me think about what the future holds. We live in a time where it is acceptable for our government to berate it’s journalist taking away the freedom of the people. We are lead by an autocracy of public shaming.

American families look to the government to blame. Who’s willing to drop their current facade, turn on the status quo and the American Dream, confess, and repent.

What do we owe one another? Social media and new technologies make it easier to hide our true faces. In the new Jay Z video, DuVernay encourages us to look within our own homes:

“Being their brilliant, black, brave, bold selves. May we all fortify our families. Our communities. Our society. In whatever

ways we can.” — DuVernay

Hey y’all the chickens have come home to roost. Until we address and heal the issues in our communities, we stand the chance of repeating the same history of the last 2000 years.

The 444 title of the album represents moving forward. Start your journey fresh and do not succumb to old ways of the past.

It’s our time to put the old things aside. Forgiveness is crucial component in the connected story of our lives. We must adopt a new mind and leave behind are olden ways of abuse of one another.

We must accept what has happen and forgive at the same time. This is the only way to end the real family feud.

Vegetarian on a dime…

Thankfully, my soon to be sister-in-law has awakened my inner chef and even though I’m only two dinners and one breakfast in, attitude is everything.

The best thing about cooking vegetarian is that it decreases my monthly meal budget and increases my savings.

What I’ve cooked so far…

My passion for Italian cuisine will never die, so for my first meal I made a Eggplant Parmesan, backed sweet potato fries, and sautéed spinach.

Although it wasn’t completely vegetarian, which depends on whose definition you use (in Asian cultures dairy still qualifies) three out four ain’t bad. All of these items were very affordable at Whole Food.

My second dish was a three mushroom tagliatelle. This one took a little research on my part. The key to this spectacular tasting dish was the rice noodle. The good thing about rice noodle is that it absorbs flavor. Rice milk was used to construct the sauce and scallions were used to add color. Again everything was very affordable total cost under $20 for a family of four with leftovers to boot.

I successfully blended a marvelous recipe for Southern pecan banana and maple French toast. I sided this dish with a vegetarian sausage.

My research for this dish shed light on the fact that technically most breads can fall into the category of vegetarian, provided it’s not made with dairy or eggs.

This was the more expensive meal out of the three. The pecans and non-GMO organic maple syrup were between $7-9 each.

All in all my vegetarian experience has been great. The meals were all very affordable So far I haven’t missed meat and I’m looking forward to exploring new recipes.

8 Smart Ways To Secure The Bag

A few years back in my life as a banker, I learned the importance of insurability. To kick the year off right it’s necessary to consider your insurance options.

Here are 8 Smart Ways to Secure the bag and remove worry and anxiety from your life:

How many of us know that most disasters aren’t included in their home or renters insurance? Majority of the times they are not. Since I moved into my condo, there has been at least a dozen of flood related incidents. Even as a renter, you can protect yourself against theft and fire.

In the words of Rihanna, you can stand under my umbrella. With umbrella insurance, when an insured is liable, the primary insurance policies pay up to their limits. Any additional amount is paid by the umbrella policy (up to the limit of the umbrella policy).

HDHP’s & HSA’s aren’t for everybody but are at least worth considering. If you can learn to be extremely frugal, putting up a sizable portion of your income in savings and investment , this may be your best option. Additional qualifiers are the super-healthy and those who rarely get sick. This helps companies as well by cutting medical expense of workers. Check with your FP (Financial Planner) for more details on this and to be certain you qualify.

A few years ago I had surgery and my short-term disability insurance kicked in. Keyword here is short-term. However I takes most people months to truly recover from surgery whether intended or unintended. Realistically you may need two to three months. You can hedge against income lost with long-term disability coverage.

For your Auto liability coverage max it out up to at least 500k. Why?

Liability insurance protects you against the claims of other drivers for their injuries or damage to their vehicles in the event that you cause an accident, up to the limits of liability in your policy. Most states require that drivers have liability insurance up to certain minimum limits. It protects bodily and property injury that you have caused to other drivers.

Rate shop for the best term life policy. Typical feature of term insurance include:

Low cost

No cash value

Usually renewable

Sometimes convertible to permanent life insurance

There was a time when people invested their entire savings on insurable death benefits. Luckily these days there are more options.

Long-term care (LTC) insurance can pay for home care, often from the first day it is needed. It will pay for a visiting or live-in caregiver, companion, housekeeper, therapist or private duty nurse. Experts suggest obtaining LTC between the ages of 45 and 55 as part of an overall retirement strategy plan to protect assets from the burdens of extended health care needs.

According to the FTC.gov, “The government’s IDENTITYTHEFT.gov website provides free personal recovery plans and step-by-step guidance to help identity theft victims recover.” That being said, opt for one of the free services prior choosing to pay out of pocket. Recent data breaches and online security threats make this a high priority on the list.

Keep in mind the plans mentioned in this article only scratch the surface. A more thorough consulted review must be done in order to reap the true benefits.

If you must…Walk it out

Shortly after the Christmas holiday, while at a family outing, I was notified that my car was totaled.

My daughter was involved in a wreck. She survived but the car didn’t. How grateful I am that it didn’t end up worst.

The news of my car being totaled brought on mixed emotions. I hadn’t been driving the car for months since I beginning a new job. I am happy that the lord took the burden of a car note off of me.

I feel ambivalent about the entire situation though. I recognize that I no longer owned stuff but the things in my life owned me.

It’s like I’m starting a new life in a way too, a new beginning. I just have to get over it. So now what? That’s all I keep asking myself. Dave Ramsey offers sound advice and while I feel good there with his advice and everything, I still keep wondering was this the best outcome? It is, although I’m a bit bitter about it. Thankfully I had GAP insurance.

Instead of paying the fees associated with the car (auto loan, insurance, and repairs) I wonder whats next for me. One idea is to pay down debt.

This would actually be the best option. And to really tell the truth, their isn’t a better option.

So there it is, I will use the money to pay down debt and start a life fund. What’s your thoughts and opinions? What would you do if you were me?

Waste not, want not…

My first thought this morning was more of a question. When the lord is working on me, heavily pervasive thoughts usually enter my mind.

This morning the idea of “waste not want not” stayed with me throughout the day. It’s one of the mantras I’ve been holding in the back of my mind for quite some time now.

The question of How much is enough? Was my second thought — How much money is enough to waste? Almost instantly I realized I am loosing money by wasting it on things I don’t need every day.

Don’t get me wrong, I knew this before, but today, it pinched my brain so much that I had to give it some thorough attention.

Some say that wealth and riches is a state of mind, a lifestyle. The fact is most things that exist in life are. We lose ourselves daily when we compromise our beliefs and values in exchange for material things. It’s called “Keeping up with the Kardashian’s”.

Here’s the challenge from me to you for the year…. I call it the:

#ATLmoneyChallenge

Think of an amount of money that you spend in a day without giving any thought. Have that amount automatically transferred to a savings account daily before you spend it. Next calculate that amount by 365 days in a year. The total amount is the amount you will have saved in a year if you complete the challenge. If 365 days is too long try 90 days first.

If you succeed take that money and put it in a money market or CD account and the start all over again.

What’s your favorite way to give in?

I’ve seen it so many times, couples arguing for no reason at all. Heck, I have even done it myself a dozen times or two.

This past weekend, my honeybun and I found ourselves in the midst of an argument over teachers supplies and a pencil case. (Seriously)

It wasn’t funny in the beginning, not at all. There I was digging through a bag of receipts to prove the date and time when I purchased the items.Watching the expressions on his face go from shocked to “you got to be kidding me women” made me realize something important, Who ever really wins an argument?

It’s like I was looking at myself in the mirror for an exaggerated minute. That’s when I decided to give in, by making a joke, “Aren’t we just the two biggest nerds that ever walked the earth” and we burst out laughing together at each other.

If we are going to spend the rest of our lives together we better to start learning how to not take ourselves so seriously.

Thinking about it, there’s nothing he could ever do to get me crazy upset. Giving in doesn’t always mean you failed. It can be the only way to win.