I admit to spending much more in years past, it’s VERY easy to do when you have a big family.
But this year we spent $12.00. I am very excited to report that small fact. Especially since we are still in the shadow of a major move, which would have been (in previous years) enough of a reason to give myself permission to go off budget. But this time we didn’t. I think the idea of DH coming home so soon is scaring me straight (or crooked depending on your perspective!)
I was able to get the candy for treats at a good price. My downfall was that DH went to Hobby Lobby to get thread and saw the decorations—he did fairly well since everything was 50% off, so only $10 there. I did have to pick up a six pack of Bud Light for my neighbor….I left him talking to our whiney 65 yo neighbor, so I owe him for that, he’ll get it Halloween night.
I admit to spending much more in years past, it’s VERY easy to do when you have a big family.
Each holiday season, I *try* to shop our local downtown square. There are lots of shops–most of them gifty type stores. Once I’m down there, I always think–why don’t I shop here more often? The shopkeepers are so helpful and really enjoy finding out about what you are buying and for who. But the part that really makes me smile is when they hand you your purchase and say–Thanks for shopping local!
Makes me feel like I’m making a diffence in my local economy.
a friend of mine just forwarded a note to a bunch of us, about buying Christmas gifts this year from local, family owned businesses. I didn’t want to pass on the email itself because it’s one of those that has been forwarded 50 gazillion times. But it did remind me of the website someone here sent me, when I was looking for Made In The USA power tools earlier this year:
That website is a clearinghouse of companies which are owned and run within the USA, employing American workers, making goods for the American people. As we start to figure out what to give for the holidays, I would humbly but strongly suggest we keep our dollars home as much as possible. Whatever your gift-giving categories (clothing, accessories, home decor, artisan goods, baby gear, appliances, etc), that website provides links to companies who make and sell those products. Here’s to keeping our dollars in the good old USA, and helping to boost our fellow American employees and business owners.
usually $110/m and there are 6 people in the house and we have a pool. My electric is anywhere from $200-300 in the summer, less in the other seasons…I only turned on the heat a few times last winter, so it was closer to the $200. I try not to use the a/c after Sept 30 and before May 1.
I get irritated when my neighbor across the street tries to compare her bill to mine…you live alone, only do laundry 1x/m, take a bath/shower 1x/w, don’t cook and have a smaller house. I can see why your bill is only $80 for electric and water.
and they are being charged for 38,000 gallons of water per month! I use about 7,000. Something definitely seems to be wrong.
She’s getting a water evaluation on the 16th, so we will see the results then.
Since she’s using so much water, half the charge is a penalty. So if she can reduce her water usages just a little, her bill will be cut in half !
Of course I love talking about money and finances whenever I can. Last night at a football a group of us were talking and the subject of the drought and water came up. In the group were two families with big houses and big yards and pools, one lives in a small condo and we live in a nice size house, small yard, no pool.
My electric, water and gas bills were soooo much lower than all of them, it was almost unbelievable! One family has a water bill of over $600, mine averages around $60 and they clients of paydayloansfloridaonline.biz. So, another has an electric bill of $300 (she lives in a condo), mine is $135 in the summer (my highest month)! I was actually proud. It makes me feel like I’m using our resources and money wisely which in turn gives me more money in my pocket for other things!
It was so much fun to talk money!
and doesn’t show any sign of “seeing the light”. Unfortunately, I did not find this site until I had already alienated him. I can’t ask him any questions, he has deemed the subject of “his business” off limits. As some of you may remember, he has thrown thousands of dollars away on product, seminars and cd’s.
He has been convinced that college is a waste of time and that he will be extremely wealthy by following this plan.
I know you are trying to help, but I think that your story might be quite unique. I think most of us (family members or friends) are at the end of our ropes and our loved one has labeled us the enemy.
My strongest advice to anyone starting this journey. Go gently, the mind control that the AMO’s practice has a stronger hold on your loved one than you do. Go informed, what I have learned in the few months I have been reading these postings is invaluable.
My brother joined Quixtar sometime in 2012 and didn’t really get into it until after his first function (which he kept raving about). When he moved in with me in 2013, he kept going on and on about the Business. I went to an “open meeting” just to humor him and was not impressed. Nevertheless, after a while, I was still curious about what he was so excited about, and so listened to the CDs and read the books. I especially ate up the books because I love reading, and self-help books appeal to me. This really impressed my brother, who wasn’t reading the books quite as fast as I. Slowly, I became indoctrinated by the CDs that my brother would always make me listen to when I rode with him in his car, and so I decided to give it a second try at another open meeting. I think the CD that most influenced me to join my brother was the Jackie Baker CD (I think it was titled “Product of Your Environment”)in which she saw her husband’s determination to go Diamond and decided to support him even though she wasn’t sure what the business was all about. Oh, and the CDs also talked about going on faith a lot of the time, which I’m sure had to do with a lot of it. In the same way as Jake Baker, my brother is a very goal-oriented guy. I’m very close to him and wanted to be a supportive sister, so I jumped on board, as much as I didn’t like the pyramidal business model. Well, 3 months pass, during which I attend one function and came away very unimpressed. THIS is what every IBO keeps ranting and raving about? What a stupid way to do business. But I shut up and pretended to be really enthused. Pretending led to reality, and I really did get into the business. I was sort of fanatical about it, even more so than my brother. Actually, I attribute my enthusiasm during my time as an IBO to being able to extract my brother from the Q cult.
Then one day, my inner voice screamed at me to go back and take a look at the research. After going to my first open meeting, I had already done my research, but found it inconclusive, since both sides seemed biased. I didn’t know who to believe. And, during my second meeting the presenter gave the analogy of the gym membership: “If you pay for a gym membership and don’t lose weight, whose fault is it? Yours, of course. Well, the business works the same way. Anyone who speaks negatively about the business is a quitter and a sore loser, and aren’t worth listening to.” So that disclaimer effectively shut off my doubts, at least for the moment. Thank goodness some of my prospects decided to question me with research they found had. At the time, I thought, how dare they waste my time when all I’m trying to do is help them?? But it was they who helped me: in my attempt to do damage control, I went online to take a look at the negative things that the “sore losers” were saying that were hurting my efforts to build my business. What I found planted seeds of doubt in my mind, so I asked my upline and mentor what to do. He responded, “well, take a look at the team. Take a look at our character. Ask yourself, are we the kind of people who would do all these things? Anytime you have doubts, just remember the kind of company you are in”. My mentor was right: I did think that my team had wonderful, lovable, genuinely good people.
Again, my doubts again were put to rest. The third time I questioned the business was when I considered introducing it to this lady who was truly struggling financially. She was really in dire straits and I cared about her very much. I really wanted to make sure that this business would work for her -it was really expensive doing those 250 PV and getting the tools each month!! I didn’t know how she would afford it. So I did more research, and again, had more doubts that were put to rest by my mentor. Thankfully, I never did get to meet with her to show her “the plan”.
Finally, one day, as I was set to go out and do my 35 prospects for the week, as promised to my mentor, I genuinely felt in my heart that something was not right. It was then that I read Merchants of Deception and was shocked to see that everything in my organization: the phrases, the mannerisms, mentality, everything in his organization was EXACTLY duplicated in mine! Afterwards, I knew I couldn’t do the business anymore. I must note that my parents were against mine and my brother’s involvement this whole time. I once put in a CD for my dad to listen to, and jokingly told him, “Dad, please, no criticisms, let me get brainwashed! I need to get brainwashed for the day.” My dad is so great, he didnt’ go on in his usual trashing of the business, he just looked at me and said, “I know you are a strong girl. You are my smart daughter, I have faith in you. I know that you will make the right decisions.” I really think this helped me leave. My dad had been exposed to Amway before, my brother and I both knew how much he was against it, and yet, he told me that he had faith in me to do the right thing, and that I am strong enough to do it! Unconditional love is so wonderful -thank you Dad! 🙂
So now, onto how I extracted my brother. I’m going to give you a lot of background detail, because I think it’s important. First, I did some dream-building. Yes, those dreambuilding techniques they teach in the business DO really work! Except that I had been using them long before I joined the Q cult. So I put up a list of goals, one of which was to successfully extract my brother from the Business. In addition, I did daily visualizations of what life would be like after my brother left the Business. I have to add that my brother really looks up to me and has a deep respect for me. He was really happy when I joined, and I knew that after I left, his morale crumbled slightly, because he believed I was going to be his “taproot”, his platinum leg that would propel him towards Diamond. And all of a sudden, his sole leg and right-hand leaves. I started questioning him:
“Knowing me, knowing how enthused I was about the business, why would I leave all of a sudden”? He knows my character, that I’m not a quitter and that I do things to completion. I brought all of this up in an email I wrote him. I told him that there has to be something really significant if I would abandon such a great multi-million dollar business opportunity. I mentioned all the things I loved about the business: the people, the dream-building techniques, the fact that it made people more accountable to their word. I highlighted the positive things and hinted that there was something deeper going on that was more negative. (I’ll post up the actual emails at a later time.) I slowly eased into reasons why I left. Then, I emailed him Merchants of Deception. After he had read it, I emailed some more materials. I slowly fed him the truth. Even so, he attended a function afterwards, because he had to know for sure. Later, he told me the book opened his eyes going into the function. The one turning point that really ended it for him was when Larry Winters came onstage and repeated something that my brother had remembered from Merchants of Deception that had come out of Dexter Yager’s mouth. My brother was so offended, he couldn’t believe it. He then found out that Larry Winters was directly mentored by Dexter Yager -and that pretty much ended it for him.
So in summary, I believe I had some credibility with my brother because of several factors:
-I was a very enthusiastic, fanatical IBO! -Unlike my brother, during the one function I attended, I participated in badgering the Diamonds, Emeralds, and high pins until the early morning hours, after the events had ended for the night. In other words, I showed more dedication
-Before the business, my brother knew that I had already been practicing the dreambuilding techniques, with good results -Prior to the business, I was already a person who liked to talk to people and strangers, making friends with whoever I happened to meet (which was why he thought I was born for the business in the first place) -My brother had very high respect for me, and knew me to be a person who perseveres, and isn’t a quitter.
-I found positive things to say about the business, even when I was saying them as a means to get him out of it.
It has been awhile since I have posted about my brother, his wife and other members of her family who got sucked into the cult-like BBN known as Fortune Hi-Tech marketing (FHTM)over 5 years ago (and are losing their shirts), but the scam simply continues to grow.
Now, FHTM has expanded their “Platinum Car Program” to include all Executive Sales Managers (ESM’s). Isn’t that just great! All they have to do is double in their ESM code for three consecutive months out of four “prescribed” months and they get a new car. At least that is what they think. Actually, all they get to do is drive a leased vehicle. The requirements are many and there are hidden costs, but these dopes think they get a free car. They have to go at a feverish pitch just to qualify then have to maintain that pace to keep the vehicle. I really do not understand how so many people could be so completely blind that they cannot see this for what it is. It is simply another hook (incentive)to increase your fear of not keeping up and maybe even noticing the rest of the FHTM scam.
Nothing in life is free, and that includes cars “given away” by huckster Paul Orberson.
In perusing the internet reading many bullitan boards, discussions, etc.,about FHTM, I am still amazed at the difference in attitude between those people who have been scammed by FHTM (or know of others who have been) and those who are “in the business”. The FHTM people, usually newbie types, are full of vitriol and want to silence all who do not drink the cool-aid while they all spout the same lines from talking points common to most other BBNs. The anti- BBN people are more logical and calm in their discussions and seem content to warn and inform.
I think my brother and his wife may have recently inherited some money from her side of the family. They have recenty purchased 130+ acres (a foreclosure sale) and are now busy renovating an abandoned vandalized 5 year old house which sat vacant on the property for over a year. I am praying that this new lease on life will get them away from FHTM. If not, I fear that it will only hasten their bottoming out in the pit of despair. I have not seen them for a long time as they have been working contantly at “building the business”. So much for working part-time and getting a residual income for life. Funny that none of their up-line has “retired”.
Hopefully, someday I will be able to post a happy ending to this continuing saga.