Keeping Records

Yeah, i’ve harped before about keeping good records and tracking expenditures and income, but when i hear the same people complain about having no money to pay bills, yet when asked if they keep records, they say ‘no,’ it causes me to wonder if they just want to complain, don’t have any idea of where their money is being spent, or perhaps don’t want to know.  But, like anything, if one doesn’t make improvements, then you’ll always be able to complain about something and that is stressful.

Here’s a short article i stumbled upon.  “Make a Personal Budget and Keep Track of Spending

It’s imperative and so easy to keep track of expenses.  Most can simply use a notebook and pencil.  Even easier is to have a calculator in the mix. (Coffee optional)  Write down the amount or ask for a receipt when you stop by the coffeeshop for a latte.  Picking up a soda from a vending machine – well, you’ll have to write it down.  Whatever you need to do, keep track of even the smallest expenditure and categorise it.  THEN, you can make decisions to change and improve your financial situations.  Reimburse your cash expenditures by writing a check to maintain your petty cash stash.  Sure, you can take cash out of your paycheck each month, but it makes it more real when you have to write a check.  Keep your petty cash in balance.

This can be applied to businesses as well, but managing one’s household and personal expenses is the first step.  Personal finance record keeping should begin in the preteen years – as soon as you earn or spend money.

Cheers!

tauna

Come, follow Me

“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” Galatians 5:16, ESV.

In high school, Paul’s words to the Galatians were a godsend, literally.  I struggled with temptations from every side, struggled mightily.  Even worse, these struggles made me feel completely unworthy to even approach God in reverence.  This verse inspired in me the first inkling that it wasn’t a matter of cleaning the sin out of my life before I came to Him, but rather a matter of sacrificing it in order to follow Him, to walk in the Spirit as it were.  Once doing so, He would lend me strength to overcome them.  As Francis Chen says in Crazy Love, “you have to stop loving and pursuing Christ in order to sin….When you are running toward Christ, you are freed up to serve, love, and give thanks without guilt, worry or fear As long as you’re running, you’re safe.”

I didn’t truly come to understand that concept until recently, but in reflection of this verse, 16-year-old me wrote this poem, possibly the only poem I’ve ever written of any quality.  I had completely forgotten about it, but while going through an old notebook recently I stumbled on it, and it convicted me to perform some introspection and see if these words still applied to my life.

 

Lord must I walk this path again?

Try to pass this test again?

So many times I’ve tried,

And failed

Then You come and pick me up

Your Spirit surrounding me,

Now it’s astounding me

Your Grace,

Compassion,

Mercy.

(Even when I don’t deserve it)

Though temptation may rise,

I will walk in the Spirit ’til the day I die

The world is pulling on me,

But I’m standing on You.

No matter what happens,

You bring me through

The world says I’m trippin’

But what they can’t see:

Every time I trip, you say,

“COME, FOLLOW ME”

-Nathan Powell

Roadbank Grazing

Friday morning the plan was to fence off a portion of Cord Drive to let the cows in to graze the road banks.  Worked perfectly, except the cows had already had their brekkies, i guess ,and were really not interested in grazing!  Next time, i’ll put them on short pasture the night before, then they’ll be eager beavers.

They were mostly interested in watching me sit on the Gator and read my new book, Colorblind, by Amy C. Blake.

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Tools of the trade.

Shabbat Shalom!

tauna

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View from my ‘office’ window yesterday.
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Coming out of the pasture into the road.

Multiflora Rose

History of multiflora rose from the Missouri Department of Conservation website:

“Multiflora rose was originally introduced to the East Coast from Japan in 1886 as rootstock for cultivated roses. In the 1930s the U.S. Soil Conservation Service advocated use of multiflora rose in soil erosion control. Experimental plantings were conducted in Missouri and Illinois, and as recently as the late 1960s, many state conservation departments were distributing rooted cuttings to landowners. It was planted in the Midwest for living fences and soil conservation. Managers recognized that plantings of this thorny, bushy shrub provided excellent escape cover and a source of winter food for wildlife. The species soon spread and became a serious invader of agricultural lands, pastures, and natural communities from the Midwest to the East Coast.”

The trunk can be as wide as 8 inches diameter and the bush can exceed 15 feet.  They are extremely hard to control and viciously difficult to handle because of the length of canes and that they are covered with thorns.  Millions of dollars are spent in time in mechanical and chemical control of these government-introduced, non-native, invasive shrubs.

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Thankfully, most of our multiflora rose bushes are not as huge as this one in view of Brook Road.  I estimate the highest canes of this bush to be nearly 20 feet!  We, along with every farmer and rancher in Missouri battle these things year round.  I’m certain they would take over the world if left unchecked!