Foodie Friday: Baked BBQ Chicken Thighs


Let me say it again: one of the perks about having my mother say with me is reliving her cooking. The other night she made BBQ baked checked thighs, green beans and rice. And I enjoyed myself.

Now I wasn’t there when she was preparing this meal, but because I get a lot of cooking style from her, I can guess she used black pepper, red pepper, diced onion, seasoning salt and probably a splash of Worcestershire sauce. Baked for 45 minutes at 375°.

Y’know, if I had to guess how she made it. 😉

Wine Wednesday: Wine & Work

Neo d'Avola and New Job

Still working on that Nero d’Avola.  The more I let it breathe in between sips and savors, the more I enjoy it.  The more tasty and smooth it becomes to my palette.   And that is it all right with me.

Not quite a full moon.  But we’re just a day or two away from one.  I love full moons.  I’ve been in love with the moon since I was a child.  I would tell my mother, whenever we were out driving and the moon was full and bright, that it was following us.  Following me.   How could it not have been?  A left there, a right here, a sharp turn a few blocks away — there he was.  Just quietly following me.

I have a second interview tomorrow.   I hadn’t a chance to say anything over these past couple days, just been real busy with regular life.  But I interviewed for a new role at a subsidiary company of a nonprofit real estate company and had thought the interview went really well.  I was scheduled to come in at 3pm and didn’t leave till 4:46pm.   Damn good, I would say.  I asked how soon were they looking to fill the role and the say said the next two weeks were going to be full of first round interviews, then afterwards, they would begin to do second round interviews with the CEO of the company.   I pegged that to be middle of April at the very latest, right?

I interviewed on Monday.  This past Monday.  The 26th.   My second interview with the CEO is this Friday.  DAMN! I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am about this role (and their 3 page list of employee benefits) and how elated I am that something I want is moving so fast.  I’ve already claimed it. This job is mine.  They have the right kind of people — so it seems–  the right kind of environment and attitude about work and progressing in one’s career.   AND… it’s only 10 or 11 blocks from my house.  AND… if I bused it to and from work, they would pay for that!

Where that’s emoji with the hands up?

But’s that’s child’s play benefits.  This organization offers life, death, accidental, travel, short and long term disability insurance, AFLAC, all medical — health, vision, dental, lasik, 401K in which they pay 15% of the employee’s salary into even if the employee doesn’t commit to anything, they have a tuition reimbursement, PC purchase program, public transportation stipend (already told you about that), housing purchase program, and a few other things I’ve forgotten off the top of my head.  And here we thought benefits were on their way out like private sector pensions were a few decades ago.

All I asked is that you keep me in your prayers.  If you don’t pray, cross some fingers for me.   Just send me good vibes.

What about my dream and goal to start and run my own business?  That is still the goal.  It hasn’t changed.  But however I can move in that direction, by any means necessary.

Inc.’s Founder Forum Tonight at the Line Hotel

After spending 8 hours at the job, I got to listen to the Founders of Loot Crate and DryBar. Knowledge, knowledge, knowledge.

Both Chris Davis and Alli Webb talked very candidly about starting their business, scaling up, growing up and learning to hand off responsibilities as their companies.

And I met a few people, as what happens at these kinds of events.

Money Tip: Have An EIG

Most of us have heard of EIC, right? Well, if you’ve done your taxes this year, you probably have. What is EIC? Earned Income Credit. This is typically a tax credit families and some low to moderate income earners will get from the IRS. I’ve never qualified for EIC, so please don’t expect too many details from me on the topic.

But an EIG, I’m all over that.

What is EIG? A little catchy thingy I call “Extra Income Goal”.

Starting a side gig can bring on a host of feelings, I get it: excitement, worry, empowerment, anxiety. But once in the groove of things, we need to start focusing on certain objectives, such how much do we want to earn a month.

If we side gig for the sake of side gigging, then we’ll accept what low fees offered my unfavorable clients. Trust me, I’m speaking from experience. To help remove ourselves from this, pick a dollar amount you want to earn every month. You can have a flat dollar goal such as an extra $500 a month. Or you can do it by the day, say you want r to earn the equivalent of an extra $20 day. For the month March, that would look something like an EIG of $620. In fact, tell yourself you need to earn this amount in order to keep pursuing side gigs. Why? Think of your time, your travel, other missed opportunities you could’ve taken on.

Yes, have an extra income goal to strive for so that all efforts feel worth it. Yeah, there may be a sense of reward for doing the kind of work we actually want to do, but if we can’t afford to do it, then we lose all around.

Side Hustlin’ Sunday: Read

Okay, this probably isn’t what you were expecting for a side hustle, but reading offers many opportunities… to create opportunities. I would say that at least 80% of the side hustles I took on and made some kind of money from came from reading. Reading other people’s blogs. Researching and reading ideas how other people were making extra money. Reading craigslist posts and seeing what people needed. I read on a very regular basis The Penny Hoarder.

Reading — yes, is fundamental– because it can create opportunities you had not thought of before. It can stimulate your imagination and creativity and help you produce ideas to improve the quality of your life.

I also read a lot of marketing books. Marketing is still very power in business and in creating businesses.

So, read. A lot. Start off with whatever interests you. Get those juices flowing so you make your money grow!

Thursday’s Thoughts: Doing Enough

I often questioned my efforts, wondering am I really doing all I can be doing to get to where I want to be. I can drive myself crazy with the questions, but not knowing the answers is just as bad.

Am I studying my interests enough?

Could I be reading more, taking more classes, going to more seminars and workshops?

Am I as dedicated as I preach to be?

How to can become more disciplined?

Is being too disciplined a problem?

Do I have the right amount of people in my life to act as sounding boards?

How can I find other like minded people to congregate with?

Can I do this alone?

Should I do this alone?

If no man is an island, can a woman be?

When will my preparation finally meet my opportunity?

Will I know it?

Do I need to be more for any opportunity that comes my way?

Am I doing enough?

How many others have felt this way as well?

Money Tip: Get Refurbished

I’m looking around my apartment right now and I just realized everything (just about everything) I own is second hand. From my couch, to my dresser, my kitchen table and chairs to my HP Chromebook laptop, all of them are second hand.

Now my laptop wouldn’t necessarily be called “second hand”. I think the PC term (no pun in intended) is “refurbished”. I bought my laptop about three years ago to the date from Staples for less than $300. And I had the intention of using it for only side work and gigs, but I use it for everything now. And it’s held up pretty well. I even purchased an additional warranty just for peace-of-mind sake. Now, I gotta cracked screen at the moment that has nothing to do with its performance or life expectancy. Just me forgetting I am too big to be lying onto something that’s already flat. But my refurbished laptop has been one of my most prized investments that I use daily.

Do you know what refurbished means. Same body, new interior. Meaning, what makes the computer run has been upgraded to new, the shell and frame have had other owners.

And I love it. Like I love all my second hand pieces. I enjoy not paying full price for something that is just as good as when someone else bought it.

And I encourage others to live a little. Save money and buy second hand.

Side Hustlin’ Sunday: Be Handy-Dandy

Have you ever figured out how to replaced a broken computer screen?

Or recovered lost “files on a computer?  What about cleaning someone’s digital files so their computer runs faster and at a better performance?   Have you ever helped someone who was completely new to email set up an account?

Probably, if you though long and hard about it.  You have some skill or knowledge that someone else out there is willing to pay you for.  Capitalize on it.  No, seriously.   I have a client (he’s really the client of another client and they referred him to me because what he needed was more time consuming than they had imagined) and I help him with some on the the most basic stuff many of us could do in our sleep.  But not to him.  To him, the tasks he’s asked of me are challenging to him.  Very challenging, that he’s admitted that when he had asked other people to help him, thy became instantly frustrated with him.  Grant, I could see why, but I do my very best not to go there with and instead him what he needs.  Support and instruction.  And the best part, I set my own price and charge him more then the client who referred him to me in the first place.

I’ve taken the things I know well enough to do that I could explain it to someone else and turned it into a gig.  With a returning client.  And let’s be honest with ourselves, people only come back to work with you if they like you.    Why?  Because people want to work with or do business with people they like or who are like them.

ANd it’s easy to be liked when you’re handy.