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This all started as a hunt for what to do with the persimmons in last week’s CSA box.

The answer? A little pumpernickel persimmon salsa appetizer, courtesy of Kristine Kidd over at Bon Appetit. BTW, head over to their site. The Halloween logo is great. And so is this recipe: Best with the Smoked Salmon and Pumpernickel and you can use the rest with the Balsamic Glazed Turkey you make for your main.

You’ll notice the persimmon page talks about “The Cure for the Common Turkey,” which lead me to the Balsamic Glazed Turkey recipe on Epicurious. An old favorite I’ve made a million times (ok, maybe not quite a million) and it’s always a hit. You literally throw it in the oven and have a perfect turkey breast 45 minutes later. I’m going to forego the onion bell pepper saute tonight and turn to the Barefoot Contessa for a little roasting. Broccoli and sweet potatoes that is.

Ina Garten does a great roasted broccoli that can get even those anti green thing people to eat it (seriously). I first ran across it at the Amateur Gourmet, calling it “The Best Broccoli of Your Life.” They weren’t kidding.

And fade to Ina again, some roasted sweet potatoes to top things off.

So there you have  it. What started as a persimmon hunt ended with a cleaning out of all produce on hand, just in time for my departure tomorrow. Call me a master of efficiency. I am ;)

Cheers! ~M

Our friends over at CoverHound put together this infographic and we love it. ‘Tis the season after all.

Car insurance politics

Provided by

Aw, the power of social media and the internet. I ran into Sarah Froney-Dugo this morning. First on LinkedIn, then Facebook, and now here. I loved the article I’m reposting below about her father’s thoughtful preparation for those left behind when he was gone. She leaves us with his checklist of documents and such, but even more she leaves us with the dignity he gave her and her mother when he prepared for the inevitable. While we often don’t want to think about this stuff, it is one of the most considerate things we can do for those that love us.

Thank you Sarah for sharing one of life’s most precious and precarious times.

Sarah can be found at College Savings Dolls where she talks about preparing for the financial aspects of college.

1st in Life Lesson Series

My Dad passed away suddenly, was a teacher in life and remained one moving forward. This series of life lessons will periodically appear on our blog. I am a big believer the positive items of the past need to be revisited and one of the many lessons he taught me was organization of your financial life.

After a tear-filled session putting into action his last wishes, which by the way were already determined and paid for. My mom and I set about putting together a continuation of her life without my Dad. What an overwhelming task was ahead of us! While I messed with putting the day to day living in place, she worked through the file box and notified the organizations. The first item on the agenda was social security and pensions.

Then under his desk we found a black-lidded plastic portable file holder. As we opened it we found all aspects of his financial life were accounted for. So the overwhelming task became less so, since not only were all the account numbers, contact phone numbers accounted for, the files were easy to read in block printing.

If my Dad’s legacy of teaching can move forward a new generation, he will be continuing his life work. As a fellow teacher blogger has taught me, life is a series of transitions.

Files listed:

1.) Will/Estate/Trust copies & where to locate the originals
2.) Social Security info.
3.) Pension info.
4.) Bank info.
5.) Investment info.
6.) Life insurance
7.) Car info.
8.) Home info.
9.) Death instructions/info.
10.) Health insurance

I came home and did the same for my husband. I do most things on-line so, I included passwords, login information, and account numbers. Sometimes, there was nothing in the folder but, the info I had written. Maybe one piece of paper with all the access codes would have been less cumbersome but, I was paying homage to my Dad-so I did it his way!

What if something happened to me, as the keeper of our financial life, where would he look? It is not something you think about at a young age but even if you don’t have the item, create a folder as a holder for it later. This life lesson re-taught me that life is fragile and preparation will help those left. By having everything in order, it gave us time to grieve, re-organize our lives, and be able to move on concentrating on happy memories.

College Highlight:

Illinois State University (my father’s undergrad teaching degree was from here)

Words with friends, football, and a fridge full of fresh produce.

What’s a girl to do other than cook a big brunch to make it the perfect Sunday? Well, perfect other than the 93 degree weather in the middle of October. I’m ready for sweaters, stews, impending holidays and a little rain. NO MORE HEAT PLEASE.

If you’ve been reading with me over the last couple of months you know I’ve been on a juice kick and have been consuming a lot of beets, juiced and solid. When a friend pointed out this beet hash recipe from Whole Living magazine, I couldn’t resist (plus eating my first egg in over a month felt like sneaking out of the house at 16). A few things to note:

1) I used purple sweet potatoes and they were delish.
2) Take their suggestion to poach the eggs as opposed to making the little wells in the recipe.
3) Go heavy on the parsley and onion.

I’m like so Martha Stewart today. Happy Brunching!!

I’ve been reading a lot of industry articles lately that say people feel life insurance is too expensive.

A big reason for this is people have often been approached by an agent who was trying to sell them permanent life insurance. These costs are very different.

While permanent life insurance can be a great thing for many people, it is often out of reach financially. Rarely will an agent show term insurance options to a prospective client because there is a limited commission and a certain amount of industry ego regarding the ability to sell a client permanent insurance as opposed to term.

Those of you who have been following me know I like to say, “it’s the industry’s fault.”

Let’s take a look at a few scenarios to break down the expense myth. I’ll quote the top three carriers (in terms of price) for 30 and 35 year old men and women for 20 year policies at $250,000 of coverage. Premiums quoted are per year (and looking at these numbers, a monthly payment would be next to nothing).



  1. Banner Life = $155
  2. Protective Life = $160
  3. ING = $160


  1. Banner Life = $143
  2. Protective Life = $145
  3. ING = $151



  1. Banner Life = $165
  2. Protective Life = $170
  3. Nationwide = $173


  1. Protective Life = $150
  2. Hartford = $160
  3. Nationwide = $160

I’ve chosen 20 year policies as the example, as they are most common. 10 year policies will be a bit cheaper and 30 year policies a bit more expensive. The most important point here is that if you have unfunded liabilities you get SOMETHING in place. You can always add or subtract from your coverage as your circumstances change throughout life.

We’ve got this easy little quoting tool on our Get a Quote page if you want to run numbers with your own information.


The Insurist

**Please note: these quotes assume the client(s) are located in California and are underwritten as Best Preferred class available.

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