Take the 30-Day Brain Health Challenge


Photo by amoon ra on Unsplash

Over 5.7 million American’s live with Alzheimer’s or related dementia. Two thirds of them are women.

Although there is no known cure for the disease or specific, medical treatment for the prevention of Alzheimer’s, there may be steps you can take now to make brain health a priority.

Start by taking the 30-Day Brain Health Challenge sponsored by BeBrainPowerful.org.

What’s On Your Summer Bucket List?

Photo taken in Banff, Alberta, Canada by Mike Branch

Financial planning isn’t about maximizing investment returns, minimizing taxes, or developing strategies to pay less for college or beef up your Social Security check.

It’s really about structuring your personal and financial resources so you can get more joy and happiness from life. That means making the most of the next 90 days, even if it’s not always very summerlike outside.

Start a list.

As a planner, I am fond of lists. I love to create them and attach them to walls, refrigerators and computer monitors. Sometimes I even get to experience the sweet satisfaction of crossing things off them.

I find that a good list not only helps me define and prioritize my goals, it helps me remember what I wanted to do in the first place.

Without a good list, I am likely to find myself at the MN State Fair wondering how I managed to let another summer slip through my fingers.

Feed My Starving Children Mobile Packing Event


Volunteers pray over a box of MannaPacks assembled by members of Incarnation Lutheran Church in Shoreview, MN

For the past several years, in lieu of a traditional holiday gift like cookies or popcorn, I have made a financial contribution to Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) in honor of you, my client.

When I can, I also try to attend a packing event so that I can literally have a hand in the process of making this gift possible.

This past week our church, Incarnation Lutheran Church of Shoreview MN, packed over 780,000 meals at our annual FMSC Mobile Packing event. That’s enough to feed over 2,088 starving children around the world for an entire year!

One of the things I love about Feed My Starving Children is that FMSC is a living example of the miracles that can happen when enough people work together, for a common purpose, contributing what they can, over a long period of time.

Since their inception in 1987, FMSC has delivered over 2 billion nutritionally complete meals to starving children around the world. 90% of the financial donations they receive go directly toward feeding children.

To learn more about FMSC mobile packing experience, watch this video.

Whether you provide financial support to FMSC, contribute your time to a packing event, or support businesses and others who do so, you have been a part of this miracle as well.

Thank you so much.

How To Remove Luck From Your Financial Plan

Photo by Amy Reed on Unsplash

Too many people rely on luck or chance to meet their financial goals.

As if being in the right place at the right time or getting lucky with a hot investment was the missing ingredient to cashing in on the pot of gold at the end of their financial rainbow.

To be sure, it helps when the stars align in your favor. And if a lucky charm in your pocket makes you feel better, I am all for it.

But if you are serious about your financial well-being it’s going to take a lot more than a lucky roll of the dice to help you meet your goals.

Below are five ways you can stack the odds in your favor and reduce the role of luck in your financial life. Hint: The last one will surprise you.

Consider This Before Moving To A Warmer State

Outside the sun is bright, the skies are blue and it couldn’t be a more beautiful winter day.

It also happens to be -30. Factoring in the wind, it “feels like” -50.

Schools, some government offices and many private businesses are closed. The local power company has just announced an urgent request for homeowners to dial back their thermometers to 60 to reduce demand on the power grid.

To me it sounds like a perfect day to work from home, break out the fingerless gloves, and get a jump on my 2018 tax return.

Of course, life doesn’t have to be this way. Some states never see temps fall below freezing and there’s even a few where state income taxes don’t exist.

However, the move to a more weather and tax friendly state comes at a price.

Before you sell the ice shanty and move to a state where the taxes and temps are more favorable, consider this: