Saturday, April 14, 2012

How To Spot A Tornado from The Ready Store

By The Ready Store
Forecasters are predicting a number of violent storms this weekend in the Midwest United States. They are saying that conditions are “ripe” for violent tornadoes in the nation’s midsection – ranging from Texas to Minnesota. (Read the Fox News article.)
We always want you to be prepared, so we’ve prepared this document that will help you recognize the coming dangers of a tornado.
The most reliable source of information is from someone who has been trained to recognize tornadoes. Be sure to keep an eye and ear on the news meteorologists.
Visual Evidence
However, if you don’t have access to a professional, you may be able to notice patterns. Below, we’ve listed typical signs of a coming tornado.

Inflow bands. These are bands of low cumulus clouds that extend from the storm’s center to the south or southeast. If you see inflow bands, it means that the storm is gathering air from several miles away.
Beaver’s tail. This is a smooth, flat cloud extending from the base of the storm to the east or northeast. It is usually found on the southern edge of the precipitation area.
Wall cloud. This is a cloud that is usually attached to the visible precipitation area of the storm. They are about two miles in diameter and mark the strongest updraft of the storm. They usually appear for about 10-20 minutes before the tornado.
Rear flank downdraft. This is a downdraft of cloud cover. It typically looks like curtains or rain wrapping around the cloud base. It will cause gusts of downward wind bursts. This will cause a hook echo feature on radar.
Condensation funnel. This is what most people know as the tornado. This is when the cloud and condensation moves towards the ground and creates a funnel cloud.
Other Evidence
Hail. Typically, there will be rain and hail with a tornado storm. Many times people report larger-than-average hail with a storm.
Loud roar. Many times, you’ll also hear a loud roar that many people describe as the sound of a freight engine.
If you believe a tornado is approaching, get into a basement or safe place. It is better to be cautious and be safe!

Friday, March 16, 2012

The HEB Prom Closet

Hello! The HEB Prom Closet is a not-for-profit outreach in Bedford, Texas that lends special occasion attire year round to all local residents - adults and students - for events such as weddings, proms, banquets, homecomings, quinceaneras, cocktail parties, job interviews, and other special events. A $20 donation is requested per outfit to help offset expenses.

Our slogan is "Don't Buy, Borrow!" Why pay $300 for a dress when you can borrow one for $20? Why pay $200 to rent a tuxedo when you can borrow one for $20?

Please contact us with any questions and thank you,
Brenda Harris
HEB Prom Closet
The HEB Prom Closet is a not-for-profit outreach that lends special occasion attire year round to all local residents - adults and students - for events such as weddings, proms, banquets, homecomings, quinceaneras, cocktail parties, job interviews, and other special events. A $20 donation is request...

Thursday, March 1, 2012

How to Save Time in College: CLEP Exams

A little background:  I grew up poor.  Very poor.  My mother did not have the money to send me to school.  It took a while for me to get there.  i started back to school when I was 27.  Worked full-time, raised a family while earning my degree.  After nine years, going through 3 majors, I earned my Bachelor's degree. 

This is one of the shortcuts that I used to earn college credits:

CLEP exams.  Instead of taking the class in a college, you take an exam and test out of the course.  This is not something that you wake up and say oh let me take this test today - It is something that you prepare for!

First, make sure your school accepts the exams and what grade is required for them to accept the course.  Click here to find out.

Second, decide on which courses you want to take.  I took all of the business basic courses, including economics, history, and biology.

Here is a list of the courses:

The College Board offers study guides, but I did not use them.  I used the following:
 Barron's EZ 101 and


Cliff Study Guides.  After all, I had already taken the courses, I just needed a refresher.

The test are given monthly.  When I was taking them they were available every month except December.  I would go to school during the fall and spring semesters, CLEP in January just before returning to school and during the summer months.

The key is to understand the test.  Each of the type of questions that appear in my test taking tips blog appear on the CLEP exam.  The key to remember on CLEP exam is DO NOT GUESS!  If you answer the question incorrectly, it is counted against you!  Therefore, if you do not know the answer do not answer it.  It will cost you 1/3 of a point.  That is the difference between passing and failing. 

Good luck!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Looking for a Job: Competition

When you are looking for a job, are you checking out your current companies competition?

Think about it - I used to work for Citibank.  When I started looking for a job, the first place I looked was at other banks.

Bank of America
Wells Fargo
BBVA Compass, etc

The same holds true with Healthcare, Retail, Construction, and many other industries.

Whatever industry you are in, look at other companies.  They generally require the same skill sets that your current employer does.

My ex-husband started out as a sheet metal mechanic and now does CAD programming.  He can move from industries such as construction to fabrication, etc.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Resolutions vs. Goals

How many of you made resolutions at the beginning of the year?

Hold your hands up high!

How many of you have failed in your resolutions?

Once again, hold those hands up high!

The reason that we fail with our resolutions is quite simply most people say:

My resolution is to lose weight or my resolutions is to quit smoking.  Nothing more.

Instead of making resolutions we should be setting goals.

Reason:  Goals have certain fundamental rules - they should be in writing, measured, state a time period, and explain how your are going to meet it.

For example:  I am going to lose 5 pounds per month by walking a mile each night.

I am going to quit smoking by June 30 by cutting down 2 cigarettes per week until I quit.

I am going to save money by eating out less one time per week and put that money in a jar so by then end of the year I will have an additional $250.

Remember, Goals are:

In writing,
and explained how to meet it.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Consider dropping the Land Line

This day and age do we really need land lines?

There are some that would say yes.  What if you need one at home for the kids?

In reality, instead of paying an additional $30-$40 for a land line, consider getting a second cell phone (usually for around $10 for the extra line) and have this as a "home" cell phone.

You don't have to change phone numbers if you move.  I've kept the same phone number for years, even though I live in a different state.

911 call centers are actually getting better at handling cell phone calls.  It should be important for your children to know there phone and address.

The only reason this day and age to keep a land line may be for business purposes. 

This is one way of cutting expenses out of your budget.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Always To Carry Cash

12 reason to carry cash!

1) Splitting bills - if you go to a restaurant for lunch and they will not do separate checks. You have cash you can pay your part.

2) Tipping - most servers prefer cash tips. This is they're income and it is easier for them to handle.

3) In case your can't use a card - Not everyone takes debit cards. There is a store near where I work nestled in between the high rises. The other day I ran in for a box of tissues. Good thing I had cash.

4) In case of emergency - You never know what is going to happen, best to have some cash with you.

5) Suspended card - The bank makes an error and your card cannot be used. But you've already had breakfast. Good thing to have cash.

6) Tolls - Friday, a couple of weeks ago there was an accident on I75 with all lanes closed, so I had to take 400 (a toll road) to get back to my temporary quarters. I had cash to pay for the toll.

7) Mug money - now this I would have laughed at before my temporary assignment in Atlanta. This was not something that I would normally worry about in San Antonio, but working in midtown this past few months have been quite the experience. The theory is to carry $20 and as few cards as possible in order to pacify a mugger. Since the mugger will usually take the money and leave you alone.

8) Cash discounts - Can't take advantage of these with a debit or credit card.

9) Showers & raffles - Anyone who works in an office knows that these come up. It's always best to have cash in order to donate.

10) Parking - If you don't pay by the month, you end up paying by the day and it's usually cash only.

11) Minimum or small purchases - Some business only allow debit or credit cards to be used with a minimum amount of $5 or $10. Do you really want to use your debit card for a $1.29 soda?

12) Yard or Garage sales - always require cash.

In addition, after any disaster may require cash simply due to the fact that the business will not have access to the phone lines required for the transmission of the data for the debit or credit cards.