Ahh the summer season is finally here! Funny how it seems to take forever to get here and then it goes by so fast! This is especially true for business owners who often find the summer months are their busiest.But – it’s good for you and for your business to take some time off to catch your breath, re-group, get some well deserved rest and enjoy yourself. What better time to do that than in the summer time! That being said we all know it can be hard to get awayâ€¦Here are some tips to help you get away!One – Schedule time off in advance and get it on the calendar now. Because if you wait until you have the time – to take time off – you’ll never have the time – you need to schedule it.Two – Book travel reservations in advance. Once you book and pay for that hotel, flight, or tickets to an event it becomes harder to not go! Three – Prepare others to cover for you in your absence. Train your employees, friends or family members to be ready to fill in for you when you’re gone so you can get away and relax knowing your business is in good hands.And finally -when you do get away – try not to think about your business constantly – if you planned well it will be fine without you and you will come back relaxed, refreshed and ready to get back to business.I’m Deb Neuman for WABI TV 5 News
In the last few weeks we’ve talked about the different perspectives men and women have concerning investing. Today I want to talk about the differences that men and women have about spending money. You may have already observed some of these traits in a man or woman that you know, but there is science to back up the observations. This information is general, as people are who they are and don’t always ‘fit in a box.’ In a study by Wharton Business School titled, “Men Buy, Women Shop,” men rate their shopping experiences – in general – by how quickly they can get checked out and leave the store. Women want personalized service, with help from sales associates and ideas for purchases. Men, according to a comedian quoted in Psychology Today, buy a shirt and wear until it dies, then go out and kill another shirt. Women begin shopping for birthday and Christmas gifts well in advance of any need. Studies hypothesize that men are hunters, women gatherers. It’s not that men don’t spend money, because they do. They spend money faster and with fewer returns than women. Women are more likely to shop for things they don’t need and to use shopping to feel better. Men rationalize that their wants ARE needs, so it may be harder to evaluate the wants versus needs aspect. So, what have we learned in the past few weeks? Men and women are different in their communication, view of, and handling of money. Communicate with each other regularly for the best relationship results. And don’t be surprised by the other person’s perspective! Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com
Grilled Orange Cashew Chicken SaladIngredients: 2 lbs. grilled chicken breast, dicedÂ½ cup salted cashews (leave whole)1 small can Mandarin oranges, drained1 small red onion, diced fineÂ½ red pepper, diced fine1 stalk celery, diced fineÂ½ cup mayonnaisezest of one orange2 tablespoons orange juice concentrateDirections: Put all ingredients together in a bowl and mix well. Place in fridge and chill for one hour. Serve on a croissant or a bed of fresh greens.Broccoli SaladIngredients:1 lb. broccoli finely choppedÂ½ cup raisins1 red onion, mincedÂ½ red bell pepper, mincedÂ½ lb. cooked bacon (optional), chopped fineÂ½ cup mayonnaiseÂ¼ cup cider vinegar2 tablespoons granulated sugarÂ¼ teaspoon white pepperDirections:Combine mayo, vinegar, sugar and pepper in a small bowl. Mix and set aside. Put all vegetables and bacon in larger bowl. Pour mayo mixture over veggies and lightly toss. Place in fridge for 1 hour. Serve.
Every where we turn these days businesses are claiming to be green as more consumers want to do businesses with companies who are more environmentally responsible. This had resulted in an over saturation of green businesses and confused consumers who aren’t really certain they know what green means anymoreâ€¦ there’s actually a term for this – it’s called green washing.If you own a small business and you are claiming to be a green business you have to really talk the talk and walk the walk. Here are 5 simple things you can do to really green your business – One – Cut down on your paper usage. Use recycled paper, print on both sides and recycle scrap pieces into notepads. Two – Set up recycling bins at every desk for paper and have one in your kitchen for recyclable items such as soup cans and take out containers.Three – Replace plastic cups and utensils in your kitchen with mugs and silver ware.Four – Use environmentally friendly cleaning products and if you use a cleaning service – ask that they do so.Five – Make sure your business vehicle is environmentally friendly and encourage employees to car pool, use public transportation or ride their bikes to work.With just a little effort you can really be a green business and these days that’s good for business!I’m Deb Neuman for WABI TV 5 News
Men and women are different – even though you probably already knew that, we’ve got a lot of science to back it up. Here is Part 2 of our series on gender differences and money. Men and Investing According to research, 74% of men think investing is FUN! The section of the male brain that “lights up” when discussing investing and risk is the same section that is active when viewing pictures of a beautiful woman. Men, compared to women, are much more willing to take risk when investing. Men describe themselves as good investors, though not necessarily with good reason as they chase tips, hold losing investments for too long a time and repeat their mistakes instead of learning from them. The most common emotions men experience while investing, by their own admission, are greed, impatience, and overconfidence. If men use financial advisors, male investors report a higher level of satisfaction and success. However these men also say that when investments go up it was their own decisions, and if investments do poorly it was because of their advisors’. Advisors report that about 2/3 of men are not adequately planning for “their spouses’ future well-being after their deaths.” What can we do? Talk to each other. Gently, but firmly, push each other to do what needs to be done and to understand finances. Next week: Men buy, women shop.Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com
By Executive Chef Terry ZaffiroIngredientsIn Pot:1 gallon chicken stock3 lbs. cooked chicken breast, cut into julienne strips, about 1â€ long1 each of green, red, orange and yellow bell peppers, cut into julienne strips about 1â€ long1 yellow onion, cut into julienne strips about 1â€ long3 stocks of celery, cut into julienne strips about 1â€ long2 medium carrots, cut into julienne strips about 1â€ long1 small can whole green chilies, cut into julienne strips1 jalapeno pepper seeded and minced1 teaspoon fresh chopped garlic3 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced1 tablespoon ground cumin1 tablespoon chili powdersalt and pepper to tasteTo serve:1 bag white corn tortilla chips2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese or shredded pepper jack per bowl1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped1 bunch green onions, mincedDirections: Bring chicken stock to a boil. Add all â€œIn Potâ€ ingredients. Let simmer for 30 minutes. In individual bowls, place crumbled tortilla chips. Ladle chicken soup over tortillas. Sprinkle with cheese, cilantro and green onions to taste. Serve hot.
In the next couple of weeks, we’re going to look at the differences between men and women when it comes to money, in terms of investing and even spending. There are a good number of studies that prove what many of us may have already noticed: gender differences are real and many. This week: Women and Investing. Women generally want to talk about investing in the global understanding of life: saving for retirement, helping kids with college, donating to charity rather than in terms of ‘how much will this investment return?’ Women generally do not know a lot about investing, but we are anxious to learn. Life-changing episodes, such as the birth of a child, marriage, death, or divorce are opportunities that make us really want to learn. But we spend more time planning vacations than taking care of our long-term finances and that’s bad because it is estimated that 80-90% of women will manage their finances alone at some point in their lives. So, stop paying so much attention to the kids and grandkids until you get something done for YOU! Talk about the finances with the family advisor or your spouse. Get details about what’s going on. You may be the one whose life and future depends upon this! Next week: Men and InvestingMarion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com
Ingredients:2 6-8oz. Atlantic salmon filets, skin offpinch of salt and pepper3 T canola oil1 cup red wine vinegar2-3 T granulated sugarÂ¾ cup waterÂ½ of red onion (thick julienne)Salad Ingredients:Â½ lb. fresh arugulaÂ½ of red onion (thin julienne)Â½ cup crumbled goat cheeseÂ½ cup fresh raspberriesÂ¼ cup coarsely chopped walnuts1/3 cup olive oil2 T red wine vinegar1 T honeyDirections:For salmon:1.Preheat oven to 425Â°.2.In an oven proof sautÃ© pan large enough to hold both pieces of salmon at the same time, add canola oil and heat pan over high heat.3.Lightly salt and pepper both sides of each piece of salmon. When is very hot but not smoking, place salmon skin side up into pan.4.Sear salmon for 3 minutes on one side. Use a spatula to flip salmon in the pan. Sear other side for 2 more minutes.5.To finish, put pan with salmon in the oven for about 8 minutes until fish is fully cooked. For agrodolce:1.In a small saucepan or sautÃ© pan, put red wine vinegar and 2 tablespoons of sugar over medium heat. When vinegar starts to boil, reduce heat to simmer.2.In a separate pan put 1 cup of raspberries, Â¾ cup water and 1 tablespoon of sugar over medium heat. When mixture starts to boil, reduce heat to simmer.3.Reduce both mixtures by Â½. Once reduced pour raspberry mixture through a small mesh strainer into vinegar mixture. Add thick julienne onions and reduce sauce until it thickens to a syrupy consistency.4.Take off heat. Taste and adjust for sweetness with more sugar. Sauce can be made up to 2 hours before a meal. For the summertime arugula salad:1.In a mixing bowl, combine olive oil, vinegar, and honey. Mix with a whisk.2.Combine all salad ingredients in bowl with vinaigrette and toss until evenly coated.To finish:Place a pool of agrodolce on plate. Put salmon on top of sauce. Place a couple pieces of cooked onion from agrodolce on top of salmon. Fill rest of plate with finished salad. Enjoy!
Let me start with a quote from Thomas Edison: “Time is really the only capital that any human being has, and the only thing we can’t afford to lose.”But we often say – I don’t have enough time. For most of us it’s not having the time that’s the issue its learning how to manage our time better that’s the challengeâ€¦Here are 5 ways you can begin to make better use of the 24 hours we’re all given in a dayâ€¦1) You have to really want to manage your time better. This requires changing behaviors and changing behaviors will only happen if you’re really committed to making a change.2) You need to re-think your priorities. Where should you be spending your time? What is truly most important to you? What really needs to get done and what is less important?3) Keep track of how you’re spending your time – for one week – keep a log of where your time is going – so you can get a clear picture of where your time wasters are.4) Then look for ways you can reduce your time wasters to free up time to focus on your priorities.5) Change your bad habits slowly. Pick one time waster to improve upon before tackling the next. For example – if you waste too much time checking email every few minutes. For one week only check it 3 times a day. I’ll end with a quote from Franklin Field: “The great dividing line between success and failure can be expressed in five words: ‘I did not have time.’ “I’m Deb Neuman for WABI TV 5News
The point of determining your risk profile is using it to determine a mix of assets that suits you. There are various helpful methods that are available. Age – A well-known rule of thumb used by some is that your age equals the percentage of your total holdings that should be in bonds. So if you are 40 then you have 40% in bonds and 60% of your portfolio in stocks. Questionnaires – These ask questions such as: when do you need the money? How would feel if the investments fluctuated by 20%? Would you be able to sleep at night? Are you willing to accept risk for the potential of higher returns? Or do you prefer steady growth? Then these questionnaires help narrow down a mix of stocks and bonds for you. I think questionnaires are superior and there are many available, especially online. Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com
Yield: 4 servingsFor Gremolata:1 Â½ T finely chopped fresh cilantro1 clove garlic, mincedzest of 1 limeFor Beurre blanc:2 T minced shallot1 T ginger, peeled and finely grated3 T fresh lime juiceÂ¼ cup white wineÂ½ cup butter (1 stick) cut into small piecesÂ½ cup reduced heavy creamFor Scallops:24 sea scallops- 1Â½ lbs.1 T olive oilDirections: Make gramolata by mixing together cilantro, garlic and lime zest. Reserve this for the finish. To prepare buerre blanc, simmer the shallot, lime juice, white wind, and reduce by half. Strain and whip in butter a little amount at a time. Finish with reduced heavy cream. Reserve on low heat.SautÃ© scallops in olive oil until golden brown. Place scallops on a plate and sprinkle with gremolata. Drizzle with sauce.
It will likely come as no surprise to you that when workers were asked what is their biggest time waster at work – many said — meetings!You can’t avoid having meetings in your business – as they’re necessary for communication and team building – but you can avoid meetings that are viewed as a waste of time.Here’s howâ€¦One – Avoid a meeting if the information can be exchanged some other way such as through an email, memo or brief report.Two – Before planning the meeting – set an objective for the meeting – so you and you’re your participants know what you want to accomplish.Three – Provide an agenda to participants beforehand that includes the topics to be discussed, by whom and for how long. Be sure to stick to the agenda.Four – Set a time limit for the meeting and stick to it! If the meeting is scheduled from 8 -10 – then it needs to end at 10. Your participants will appreciate that you’re respecting their time.Five – Don’t finish any discussion without deciding how you will act on it, who will do it and when.And finallyâ€¦ provide snacksâ€¦ snacks are always good!
Every now and then, we all wonder what it would be like to switch jobs and try something else for a day. Our Amy Erickson’s been giving it a try lately. This month, she traded in her microphone for an apron at Frank’s Bake Shop in Bangor:Ok, I’ll admit I went into this one pretty confident.I fancy myself a decent baker at home…but I was about to get a serious reality check.Bernadette Gaspar threw me an apron and put me right to work.”I think we oughta try you on cake decorating.”Easy enough, right?A little frosting, a few decorations…not quite.The first secret I learned?Pile on the frosting…when you think you have too much…add more.”If you do not you’re gonna get crumbs in the frosting.”Maddie’s one of the professional decorators at Frank’s…she gave me some tips for perfect frosting.”Look at you with the wrist action! It’s a lot in the wrist…seriously!”And just when I think it’s looking pretty good…”Alright, what do you think of these sides? Bernadette? Well, I can see some bare spots. Maybe Maddie can help you. We don’t want to be embarrassed.”That’s where the paddle comes in.And see how she spins the platter as she goes?Not nearly as easy as it looks.”this spin takes a long time to get down. I don’t know how you do this!”Finally…”I’m pretty proud of that. That looks pretty good. That was hard, though! Took a lot longer than I thought.”That was nothing.Next came decorations.Maddie tells me I’m doing a scallop trim with a star tip…and gives me a quick lesson.”Seriously?!!””oh, God! How did you do that? Oh, this looks horrible.”From there it was on to making flowers…again, Maddie makes it look effortless.”There’s no way.”Ok, so mine is a tad wilted…but still recognizable…and edible.But I’m too tired to eat.”How’s your arm, is it tired? Yeah, actually. Yeah, my wrist is.”Next, there are cookies to be made…so we head for the dough.My assignment? Glazed butterfly cookies.”There goes your raise! Stick that right back in there.”Bernadette says it’s easy for home bakers to get overwhelmed in a place like this.”If I had to pay you for that cookies, i’d have to triple the cost because of the time it takes you to get it out.”But I finally got them made and into the oven…along with some cakes…and with all those shelves cranking out goodies all day long…we’re talking some serious heat.Takes some getting used to.”Ow!”At the end of the day, I got my review from Bernadette.”I think you did a wonderful job, I really did. And you only got a little bit of a sunburn in the oven. But you didn’t get a burn! That’s good.”So do I have a future as a baker?”I think reporter is good. You make a good reporter.”Amy is always looking for suggestions for her next job swap.If you have an idea, you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Make a list – Do you know who you owe? Make a list of your unsecured debt, including the name of the card, the total amount due, the interest rate, and the minimum balance. An accountant told me that paying the minimum payment is not a crime. That’s the contract. But it makes money for the credit card company because you are paying a lot to borrow that money. Develop your strategy – Pick which card’s faster repayment will benefit you most quickly. Pick either the card with the lowest balance for a quick bit of satisfaction or the card with the highest interest rate. Figure out how much more per month you can pay because of cutting back on spending elsewhere in your budget. Attack – Now pay more than the minimum on the card that you have focused on. Pay the minimum on the other debt. Focus your strategy! That will make the impact more obvious and satisfying. Keep on keeping on – As that card is paid off (SWEET!), focus your efforts on the next card and use all the money from the first card’s minimum and additional payment to target and attack the second card. When you have paid THAT one off, move all the money from the first AND second cards’ minimums and additional payments into the third card’s payment. And then the next one and the next. Have a party! Good job! Life is a journey. You may not be partying right now, but have a good goal and someday soon, you will get to the finish line! Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com
Yield: 4 servingsIngredients:4 Maine lobster tails2 T butter1 Â½ cup finely chopped dried tropical fruit2 T red curry paste1 T curry powder1 stalk lemon grass, peeled and thinly sliced2 Kaffir lime leaves, ribs removed and finely chopped1 cup dry white wine2 cups heavy creamsalt and pepper to taste1 T fresh cilantro, finely mincedDirections:Blanch lobsters in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Remove tails from bodies and split in half. Grill lobsters over medium high heat. Remove from shell, cut into bite size pieces and return to the shell.In a medium sautÃ© pan, melt butter and sautÃ© fruit, lemongrass, and kaffir lime leaves for about two minutes. Deglaze pan with white wine and reduce by half, add the cream, curry paste and curry powder. Season with salt and pepper and adjust flavor with more curry paste if desired. Gently heat and spoon sauce over grilled lobster tails.
If the beneficiary does NOT go to school: you can change the beneficiary’ to another college-bound child, or remove the money and pay a penalty, taxes, and forfeit the grants. First Step Grant – For Maine accounts for babies less than 1 year-old, a $50 gift, regardless of family income Harold Alfond College Challenge- For Maine babies with accounts opened prior to their 1st birthdays, $500 gift regardless of family income NextGen Initial Matching Grant- For Maine babies OR for Maine account owners with the owner’s federally adjusted gross income less than $75,000, eligible for $200 grant upon opening the account regardless of child’s age Annual Matching Grant- Account owner for baby/child must be a Maine resident and must make less than $75,000 on federally adjusted income: a 50% match is available for contributions of at least $50 with a maximum match of $200 See more information at FAMEMaine.com Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com
Ingredients:3- 8oz. bottles of clam juice1 cup low sodium chicken broth3 T olive oil6 uncooked large shrimp, peeled, deveined, and finely dicedÂ¼ cup finely diced onion1 clove garlic, minced1 cup Arborio riceÂ¼ cup dry white wine2 T butter (1/4 stick)1 T vegetable oilÂ½ cup parmesan cheese6 large sea scallopstruffle oil, to drizzle2 T chopped fresh chivesDirections:Bring clam juice and broth to simmer in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low: cover to keep warm. Heat oil in heavy saucepan over medium high heat. Add shrimp and sautÃ© for 1 minute, remove from pan and reserve. Add onion to pan and sautÃ© until translucent. Add garlic and briefly sautÃ©. Add rice and briefly sautÃ©. Add wine and simmer until absorbed. Add clam juice and chicken broth 1 cup at a time until absorbed. Stir continuously during this process. Cook rice until tender but firm to the bite. Stir in butter, parmesan cheese and shrimp. Season with salt and pepper.Heat vegetable oil in heavy sautÃ© pan over high heat. Sear scallops until golden brown and opaque in center, about 1 minute each side. Divide risotto among 6 plates. Place one scallop atop risotto on each plate and drizzle lightly with truffle oil. Sprinkle with chives and serve.
A recent article in the Wall Street Journal had some ideas for teaching kids about money and I’m always interested in what’s available. 1.) The Millionaire Kids Club – This series of three books is about four friends with different money ‘personalities.” Sandy saves, Dennis donates, Stephanie spends and Isaiah invests. The series is for kids 3-12 years old. Garage Sale Riches, Putting the ‘Do’ in Donate and Home Sweet Home are available for $12.95 from Amazon, msgen.com and other sites. Home Sweet Home is about a family that losses their home in foreclosure, so I would probably not start off with that volume unless you are looking to help kids understand current events. 2.) Big Pay Day – This board game by Winning Moves, simulates ‘real world’ finances with bills in the mail, investments and getting paid. I am not a game person but this sounds like an easy way to give some financial instruction without pain! At just $14.98 it’s a good deal cheaper than Rich Dad, Poor Dad’s expensive game that I reviewed last year. You can see the game in action on YouTube,
Ingredients:1 Â½ cups red wine1/3 cup sugarÂ¼ cup orange juice1 3 x Â¾â€ inch strip lemon peel-yellow part only1 whole clove2 firm but ripe medium pears, stems left attached, halved lengthwise and cored1 tablespoon crÃ¨me de cassis (black currant liquor)8 oz. triple crÃ¨me cheese- St. Andre or Brillat-Savarin, cut into 4 wedgesDirections:Combine wine, sugar, orange juice, lemon peel, and clove in heavy saucepan. Cut out round piece of parchment the same size as the saucepan. Add pears to saucepan and place parchment atop pears. Bring to a simmer and poach until tender. Remove pears and chill. Reduce syrup to about Â¾ of a cup. Thinly fan pears and pool syrup on a plate, arrange cheese and garnish with mint, fresh greens or other garnishes.
There is a show produced out of Canada that I really like. Gail Vaz-Oxlade has a balanced, common-sense approach to budgeting and life, and on her show, “Til Debt Do Us Part,” she helps couples get their debt and savings under control. The website has shows that you can watch online as well as some of her articles and materials that will be on the WABI.TV site. Here is Gail’s suggested budget: 25% – Life – entertainment, food, medical expenses, bank fees, kids’ allowances15% – Max debt repayment – except for brief (less than 2 years) of paying off debt15%- Transportation – car payments, repairs, tolls, gas10% – Savings – retirement and emergencies35% – Housing – and this includes mortgage and taxes, electricity and other utilities such as water, insurance, and house maintenance. If you watch her videos you’ll see that when she meets folks for the first time she reconnoiters the budget around to make debt repayment a very high priority even though she still makes savings part of every couples’ budget. Work this around so you can see generally where things might fit and strive for the goal. The journey might not be completed for years. Just keep on keeping on! Helpful web site:Gail Vaz-Oxlade’s “Til Debt Do Us Part:”