Happy New Year! If your bleary eyed and looking for Asprin, that was an energetic whisper instead of a yell…
Well 2020 is officially here. Now if I can just train myself to write that year, on important things like billing, receipts and checks. If you haven’t adjusted your organizer, calendars, and yearly to-do lists, it’s a good day to spend quietly preparing to rejoin the world. (If you’re lucky enough to have time off to do so.)
First make it a point if you’re not totally digital to transfer any dates, notes, or important information to this tears planner. Sync the digital, worlds of desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile so you have your information handy. You should do a complete backup of your contacts, calendars, and any other vital information.
For digital media burn real back up disks. I know, it sounds old fashioned today, but that thumb drive, external hard drive, micro sd card can all be wiped out. The wrong delete command can undo all your hard work. What would you do if you lost all those irreplacable photos?
Ok, like most of us I have cloud storage. So why do I need to do anything physical like a real disk? Cloud storage has gotten better but, experts still agree if you go with this method, you need more than one. A physical disk also lets me keep my private files…Private!
Data breaches happen all the time. Google, Banks, Stores where we shop, they appear in the news all the time. Sensitive information like credit cards, financial records, taxes, contacts, and any photos, you don’t want out there don’t store it anywhere that has network access. Yes, it makes it easier for you to get to your files but internet security is really only good until the next hacker breaks it. Do you really want to learn through social media that “That” photo is out there. With identity theft rates going higher, do not want to take chances with your sensitive information?
Staying on Track
As a blogger, and in charge of the family finances, I safeguard this information. I use a variety of both physical and virtual tools to make my life easier. To keep my days on track and remember appointments I still use a paper planner. Everything from holidays, birthdays, and planning for both my family and my blog go here. I find it easier to stay focused, complete tasks in a timely manner and use things like alarms on my phone for special reminders.
Outside of that and a secret stash of sensitive login information I’m fully digital. We use app named Prism to keep track of paydays, bills, credit cards and so on. It let’s me track and make payments easily with an easy to understand interface that covers everything. It reminds me when the water payment is due. Keeps my bank balance, tells me the car insurance is next week and keeps up with my automatic payments. With bank-level security and automatic locking features even if I lose my phone no one else can get in.
The second Friday of December is celebrated every year as Official Lost and Found Day. This year that will fall on Saturday, December 14, 2019.
- someone is holding it for the owner to claim it.
- Though not technically lost, items sold at thrift stores and flea markets are certainly forgotten. Take this day to visit your local thrift store and find something that will be loved in your home.
- If you are prone to losing things, perhaps today is the day to figure out a way to make sure you don’t lose things frequently. Some ideas include putting a name tag and contact information on your belongings and creating a process to check if you have all your things with you when leaving the home, getting off public transport and leaving any public area.
Did You Know…
…that the lost and found system in Japan today dates back to a code written in 718?
Computer Security Day on November 30th reminds us to protect our computers. Every day, computers become faster and more advanced. Protecting the resources, tools, and information on them protects the people who use them, too.
Since the first home computer, how we use them has changed. Today, we use computers to stay connected. We bank and work from home. While computers are on every campus in every school, many gain an education right from home. We do our taxes, attend meetings and research complex issues all on computers.
Wouldn’t it make sense to do everything possible to keep these powerful machines secure? Some of them hold a lifetime of data. Precious and irreplaceable photos, journals, novels, passwords. It’s vital to protect even a portion of that information. Our very identity exists on computers.
Identity theft, fraud, ransomware, viruses, and more constantly attack our computers. They seek the most vulnerable users. In an instant, they take us offline, derailing a lifetime of accomplishment. Protect your family and business by giving your computers a security check-up.
HOW TO OBSERVE #ComputerSecurityDay
Use the checklist below to secure your computer. It’s important to review your computer’s security on a regular basis. If you use social media, it’s a good time to review your settings. Social media is another way identity thieves, viruses and computer fraud is committed. Spread the word on social media using #ComputerSecurityDay to inform others how they can secure their data!
- Enable Windows Update.
- Install and keep running antivirus software.
- Turn on Windows Firewall.
- Keep all software updated.
- Always use strong passwords.
- Don’t share passwords and don’t write them down.
- A password is required to access my computer.
- Remove unused programs.
- Secure your wireless network.
- Back up critical data.
- Use caution when browsing the Internet.
- I log off the computer when I’m not using it.
- My web browser does not store or remember my passwords.
- Periodically remove temporary Internet files.
COMPUTER SECURITY DAY HISTORY
In 1988, the Association for Computer Security launched the first Computer Security Day to raise awareness concerning computer security issues.
There are two kinds of people who venture out for Black Friday. The first is the ultimate bargain hunter. Then there are those who are going out for the fun of it. Both have different styles and goals in mind. Which ever you are here are some great tips, even if you are in an in between category.
Is it worth it? My retailers have given up the holiday of Thanksgiving itself. The practice started as retailers began to compete. Every year the store opening and crazy deals have gotten earlier in an effort to beat out their competition. Several years ago some started at 6am. Now they’ve backed into Thanksgiving Day itself. I worked these crazy schedules for years. I can vividly remember my first Black Friday morning. When pulling into my mall and seeing the lines stretched around the buildings in the freezing weather.
Opening the doors has to be done with great care to avoid being trampled. As I was behind a vast counter, I’ve never been so thankful for the two feet separating them from me. One year they even had a stampeding hoard going up the escalators behind me. I’ve seen the news reports of violence and thought wow I’m glad i don’t live there. Then people did it in my store over $15 toasters.
I decided upon witnessing this i would never need a toaster it waffle iron that much. The danger is just not worth saving $5.00. While I did work this for many years, I’m thankful I’m not giving up my family time anymore.
As you venture out this shopping weekend please remember to be patient, kind, and respectful to the retail personnel who work so hard for you. Many have to now completely give up their family Thanksgiving to be here and ready for your shopping pleasure. Here are my insider tips after so many years behind the counter.
Do you really need it on Thanksgiving Day? While fun, you give up that precious time with your family. Those moments once gone can never be reclaimed. Like several of my close family, and indeed myself coming to close to having no more of those moments I appreciate them more profoundly. I remember my dad’s smiles and hugs, his military service humor. The warmth is given to each other as we spend a relaxed afternoon sharing stories, memories, food, and catching up on experiences. So decide if you really want to give that up.
- If you are venturing out have a game plan. You should rank items in terms of importance.
- Divide and conquer- Go as a group. It adds to both the fun and makes it easier to find and get what you want.
- Coupons and deals – Make sure you know the store policies on both the deals and coupons. If you find them in the sales ad or online read the fine print. Some cannot be used until after a certain time or even date. Lots of retailers give out coupons at the door Thursday/Friday for Saturday and Sunday. Knowing this in advance makes it easier to both budget and keep transactions smooth in the stores.
Coffee, Coffee, Coffee!For most this is a beverage we use to kickstart our days. If this sounds like you make sure you have some both before venturing out and throughout the day. Being tired or exhausted lead to shorter tempers and less patience. On this day your experience will prove much more pleasant if you have these qualities in abundance.Limited Quantities – The deals you see can only be anticipated to a certain extent by retailers. It is also a gamble on their part. They have to bet on what items you will buy. This represents a good amount of money invested to have an item in stock at your local store. Some items can have the special pricing locked in by order that day. Keep in mind the clerk in front of you in all likelihood had no part in those decisions. As they also do not have the final say in some policies. Knowing this will help you make choices on these items. It will also keep lines moving so the people behind you will stay happier.
For most this is a beverage we use to kickstart our days. If this sounds like you make sure you have some both before venturing out and throughout the day. Being tired or exhausted lead to shorter tempers and less patience. On this day your experience will prove much more pleasant if you have these qualities in abundance.Limited Quantities – The deals you see can only be anticipated to a certain extent by retailers. It is also a gamble on their part. They have to bet on what items you will buy. This represents a good amount of money invested to have an item in stock at your local store. Some items can have the special pricing locked in by order that day. Keep in mind the clerk in front of you in all likelihood had no part in those decisions. As they also do not have the final say in some policies. Knowing this will help you make choices on these items. It will also keep lines moving so the people behind you will stay happier.
Where ever your adventure takes you make sure to bring your smile, your patience, and anything you need such as credit card, photo ID, cell phone charger, phone, and any apps you may need to keep it fun.
On November 16th food lovers get a dose of their favorite convenience food on National Fast Food Day. Whether they use the drive-thru, dine-in or get it to go, fast food will grill up, fry up and broil up menu staples.
First popularized in the United States in the 1950s, fast food is considered any meal with low preparation time and served to a customer in a packaged form. The meal makes for quick dine-in, take-out or take-away. Most fast-food restaurants offer drive-thru service.
Following World War I, automobiles became popular and more affordable. At that time, restaurants introduced the drive-in.
Much like today’s food trucks, Walter Anderson first began selling hamburgers out of an old streetcar body at a Wichita intersection. While the menu was limited, the hamburgers were a crowd-pleaser. When the popularity of his hamburgers grew, he partnered with E.W. Ingram and opened the first White Castle in 1921 in Wichita, Kansas. The enterprising restauranteurs were the first in the fast-food business. They sold hamburgers for five cents each.
The United States has the largest fast food industry in the world. American fast-food restaurants are located in over 100 countries.
While fast-food began as sandwiches and sides, the menus expanded over-time. Today fast-food includes fish, a variety of fried chicken, tacos, pizza and a wide selection of sides. Sodas quench the thirst and desserts sweeten the menu. From ice cream and shakes to pies and cakes, fast food delivers.
As times changed, restaurants added breakfast items to the menu, too. Expanding their hours increased their workforce and their menu options, as well. However, not all fast-food chains offer breakfast.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalFastFoodDay
Invite a group out to your favorite fast-food restaurant. Share some rings and a shake. Do you prefer breakfast or lunch?
Give a shoutout to your favorite fast-food restaurant using #NationalFastFoodDay to post on social media.
Feel like your life sometimes spirals into a chaotic mess? Then Chaos Never Dies Day on November 9 is the holiday for you.
This made-up holiday encourages people to realize that chaos is part of life and that it will never die. So instead of getting hassled by it, just take a deep breath and let go of things that create chaos in your life on this day.
How fitting that this made up holiday is settled in November, just before the chaos of holiday, planning, eating, parties, shopping, and gifting begin in earnest. So much so that many started gift shopping for the next year on December 26th. For those who didn’t start that early or at all I can promise it is easier and a lot less chaotic when not scrunched into a limited two month time period.
If you are someone who thrives on chaos, you will find yourself firmly in your element as holiday events ensue. While I can quite happily join the holiday hustle, starting early gives me more time for personal gifting and enduring memory making.
Chaos Never Dies Day is also known as National Chaos Never Dies Day in the United States.
How to Celebrate?
- Take the day for yourself and do things that de-stress you. Pack your lunch and go for a picnic in the park with your loved ones.
- Watch a feel good movie or read a book.
- Take a nap in the middle of the day and remember chaos never dies, so it can wait to hassle you for one more day.
Information on this and many more fun holidays go to https://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/fun/chaos-never-dies-day
World Smile Day
The first Friday of October every year is celebrated around the globe as World Smile Day. The unofficial holiday encourages people to do acts of kindness to spread good will and cheer.
First started in 1999 by the creator of the smiley, Harvey Ball, the holiday celebrates the intent behind the now universally recognized icon – to bring a smile of the faces of people around the world. The purpose of the holiday was the move away from the commercialization of the smiley and to use it as a symbol of kindness and affection.
The smiley made its debut in 1963 as a way to increase the morale of the employees of a life insurance company. Today, it is one of the most popular nonverbal ways to convey joy, happiness and cheer. The smiley face began as a bright yellow circle with two dots to represent eyes and a black line that represents a smiling mouth.
Today, there are many different versions of the smiley, representing many other human emotions such a sadness, surprise, worry and laughter. In modern texting smileys are used to express emotions in online conversations on a smartphone or on a computer. The practice has its origin in Japan, and the smileys and other icons are known as emoji.
How to Celebrate?
- Make people around you smile.
- Do a random act of kindness. Buy a stranger a coffee. Compliment someone. Give your seat up to someone on the bus.
- Surprise someone in your family with a visit, cook a meal for them, or do something special for them.
- Volunteer your time and/ or money at a local nonprofit organization.
Did you know?
…that babies are born with the ability to smile?
National Taco Day
The National Taco Day Gift Set is back. In Taco Bells all over the US – and that is a fact. It includes four tacos of the iconic variety: two crunchy and two with even more notoriety. We’re speaking, of course, of the beloved DLT. The gift set carries two that are flavored Nacho Cheese.
Eat it all up or bestow it upon a friend, because for only $5, there’s no wrong way to spend. If your loved one lives far, there’s no need to fret. We’ve got other ways to gift, on that you can bet. Send a digital gift card for five dollars plus tax, even add a personal message to include with the snacks.
Growing up and even just two days ago Tacos are a fun easy dinner. Get our homemade recipe here.