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4 Ways to Overcome Money Problems in your 20s

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One of the benefits of being in our 20s is that we have a lot of growing up to do.  I know that sounds weird, but it’s true.  Our lives are just starting and the benefit is that we can make changes so our lives turn out to be whatever we want them to be.

I made a lot of mistakes in my 20s, (just as most 20 year olds do) a lot of which involved money.  The good thing about making mistakes in our 20s is that we can learn from them, make changes and go on to be whoever it is that we want to be.

If your 20-something money situation is less than ideal here are some ways you can make changes and improve your finances:

Talk about it with your partner

Not too long ago I found myself 27 years old and over $50k in debt.  BF didn’t want to talk about our money situation because our conversations would always end up in a fight about why we have no money and how we should spend the little money we had.  So I avoided the situation all together for the sake of our relationship.

However what we should have done was admit the problem and talk about it instead of avoid it.  The sooner one of us would have brought up the situation, the sooner we could have started to fix it.

Go to your bank and ask for help

Our finances got so bad that I considered declaring bankruptcy.  That’s a lot of financial trouble for anyone, but defintiely for someone who’s in her 20s to be in.  I thought I had my credit card payments under control and I thought I could become debt free if I wanted to…but I was wrong.

I should have asked for help a lot sooner than I did.  I should have went to my bank to set a budget, figure out how to cut my expenses and start spending less.  Instead I just kept making minimum payments and using the majority of my pay check to repay debt instead of living my life.

Change your lifestyle habits

A big contributing factor to my debt was the fact that I was living the fast life.  I was eating out at restaurants every day and never thinking twice about spending money.  This is a recipe for disaster.  A lot of people say that the one way to overcome money troubles is to stop spending, but that’s easier said than done.

I had to completely change my lifestyle in order to start spending less and making bigger payments towards my debt.  I moved to a smaller apartment outside of the core downtown area (where I had always lived), I cut my monthly expenses including switching to a smaller cell phone plan and downgrading from an extreme satellite package to basic cable.

Accept the emotions along with the finances

After a long hard look at my life I decided I was going to overcome my debt; however it wouldn’t be without tears.  I decided that bankruptcy wasn’t an option and I started accepting the fact that I was in a lot of trouble.  Only then could I actually swallow my pride (and there was a lot) and change my ways.

It definitely wasn’t easy to tell my friends I couldn’t hang out, start cooking at home instead of grabbing food on the go and learning to live on less.  But I did it and I am a better person for it.

Photo from Pixabay

Book Reviews: Author James Patterson

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I love a good author, almost just as much as I love a good book.  When I love an author I will try to read as many books as I can by them.  Sometimes I hit a bad book because let’s be honest not every single novel can be a best seller, but if I know the author and like them I’ll always give another one of their books a try.

The author is one of the main reasons why I read a book review or buy a new book, the synopsis is the second and the price is the third.  I refuse to pay $30 for a new book that I’m only going to read once and therefore I usually only buy paperbacks.  $12 is normally the maximum price I’ll ever pay for a book.

James Patterson is one of my favorite authors.  I first discovered him four years ago when a co-worker suggested I read his novel Sunday at Tiffany’s and since then I’ve read five of his books.  I gave my co-worker’s recommendation a try because I love any story that’s set in New York City.  To say that I really liked the book would be an understatement, but we’ll get into that in just a moment.

When I went on the Barnes and Noble website to find my next book by James Patterson I quickly discovered that self-finding, love stories are not the only genre of book he writes.  Patterson is also a crime fiction author and at that moment my James Patterson obsession began.

These are some of my favorite books by James Patterson:

Postcard Killers

This book takes the reader through a tour of Europe as an American detective tries to catch a pair of ruthless killers who mail postcards to local press with clues as to where they’ve left a crime scene.  As I was reading I could just picture myself roaming the streets in Italy or driving through the Swedish country side.

The twist to this who-dun-it and where-are-they-novel is the love story that blossoms between the American detective and a local reporter covering the case.  There are a few twists and turns along the way but it’s basically a classic catch-the-killer kind of story.

Sunday at Tiffany’s

Readers rarely forget their first read by a favorite author.  I will always remember reading Sunday at Tiffany’s by James Patterson because as I mentioned it was the first book I ever read by him and it’s the story that sparked my obsession.

This is a classic novel about finding yourself, falling in love and creating your happily ever after.  There is also some tragedy mixed into the story and at the time I was not at a good place personally so the book was a bit too emotional for me at the time, however it was a really good read.

Tick Tock

This was the second book I ever read by James Patterson and the first of the crime fiction genre as well as the first in the Detective Michael Bennett series.  I really liked it and now it’s one of my favorite novels, not just by Patterson, but of all time.  I wouldn’t read it a second time because I don’t like to do that, but it is definitely a book worth reading.

The suspense will keep you turning pages and the mixture of both family and professional drama will have you wanting to know what’s going to happen next; actually I should say it will have you wondering what this serial killer terrorizing NYC will do next.  Sometimes the suspense in a book is what keeps me reading, even more than the storyline.

Photo from Pixabay

5 Tips for Women with Thinning Hair

Although a Harvard Medical School report states that over one third of women will experience it at some point in their lifetime, thinning hair is still seen as a predominantly male issue. What causes women to lose their hair? Different factors can all contribute; aging, medication, hair dyes, heated straightening and curling items, and health issues such as thyroid and hormonal changes are just a few. However, the most common reason for female hair loss is a hereditary condition known as androgenetic alopecia. In order to start searching for a solution for thinning hair, however, you’ll first need to get to the root of the problem. We’ve put together a list of common solutions that women use for thinning hair.

Medical Solutions

If you find that everything you have tried using to deal with thinning hair is not working, your doctor may be able to help you find a solution. There are a number of hair growth supplements that can be prescribed medically and are very effective, along with steroid scalp injections. For those who want to take more drastic measures, hair transplants can be performed, however it’s advisable that you seek the advice of a consultant or expert before you go down this route.

Topical Solutions

There are a number of topical products for hair regrowth on the market that are very effective. Products such as Revivogen have a great success rate, and are very popular with ladies who have experienced temporary hair loss or thinning, for example as a result of pregnancy or a side effect from medication.

Visit the Hairdresser

There’s no denying that a good hairstyle can have transformational effects, but many women who are experiencing hair loss or thinning become afraid of having their hair cut, as they understandably don’t want to sacrifice any more hair. However, a good stylist will be able to work with your current hair to provide you with a chic, stylish cut that minimizes the effect of the hair loss and/or thinning.

Change Your Color

Although grabbing a box of home dye and applying it yourself can have a detrimental effect on your hair, visiting a professional stylist who will really be able to take care of your hair whilst coloring it is a good way to change your hair color to one that enhances your skin tone and minimizes the appearance of hair loss or thinning.

Be Careful with Heat Styling

In order to keep the hair that you have protected, it’s important to take extra care when using heat styling products such as a hair dryer, hair straighteners, or curling tongs. Regular use of thermal protection products is absolutely necessary, and you should use the lowest heat setting available whenever possible. If you can go without using heat styling, you should.

Do you have any tips for women who have thinning hair? Maybe you’ve been through it yourself, and have some great advice to add to the list? Whatever worked best for you, we’d love to hear all about it in the comments below.

The Most Beautiful Lakes in the USA

lakesThe United States of America is defined by water. From the Atlantic to the Pacific oceans, the Caribbean Sea to the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi to the Colorado rivers, vast waterways have shaped this land and the people who call it home. Let’s not forget the lakes — beautiful bodies of water that have been awing all comers for centuries. Whether you prefer fishing, boating or just sitting on the shore with a good book, do yourself a favor and find a way to visit these lakes.

And remember, if you’re going to take the boat out for some fun on the water, you need to get a boating license first.

Crater Lake, Oregon

Nothing is quite like Crater Lake. Crystal clear, blue water filled the hole left when an ancient volcano, Mount Mazama, collapsed nearly 8,000 years ago, and everyone who has seen it since has had their breath taken away. It is the centerpiece of Oregon’s Crater Lake National Park, and a hike to the caldera is one of the best trips you could ever take.

Lake Placid, New York

Lake Placid is best remembered not for its water but for ice. The 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid featured the U.S. hockey team’s improbable upset over the Soviet juggernauts in the “Miracle on Ice.” But those who have seen the lake in person would probably tell you that its splendor is even more amazing than the outcome of a sporting event. It gets a gold medal in beauty.

Skilak Lake, Alaska


The majestic Skilak Lake in Alaska is partly filled by glacial melt runoff, making it an incredibly gorgeous oasis in a land of stark, harsh terrain. And since this large lake — it is 15 miles long and up to 4 miles wide in some places — sits just two hours from Anchorage, it is one of the more accessible of the many wondrous lakes in a state that may have more natural beauty than the other 49 combined.

Lake Powell, Arizona

Not all wonder has to be natural. The manmade Lake Powell, which was created near Glen Canyon when a dam was built in 1963, is a true sight to behold. A huge reservoir of water in such an arid climate makes for a dynamic contrast that will wow any visitor. The Rainbow Bridge National Monument is something you cannot miss.

Lake Chelan, Washington

Washington’s biggest lake is a tourist draw, and it’s easy to see why. It is the third deepest lake in the United States, something that was only magnified when a dam installation in 1927 raised the water level almost 30 feet. With great fishing and easy access, it is one of the state’s best vacation spots.

Lake Okeechobee, Florida


After Lake Michigan, Lake Okeechobee — or just “The Lake” in Florida — is the largest lake entirely in the Lower 48. It is unique for being so mammoth yet so swallow, with an average depth of less than 10 feet.