Say: "Hey, Siri / Alexa. Play The SavingsAngel Show Podcast."
Hi! I’m Josh Elledge, the Chief Executive Angel of SavingsAngel.com and welcome to the SavingsAngel show! I’m podcasting to you while practicing self-isolation with my family from an overcast Orlando, Florida. And while we're all practicing social distancing, some people are suffering greatly from loneliness and depression. If this affects you, or someone you love, know that we are in this together. I have some great tips and resources at the end of this podcast to help with mental health.
I am an extremely busy consumer expert, money-saving advocate, syndicated newspaper columnist, and the guy that turns digital entrepreneurs into media celebrities with UpMyInfluence.com. I love what I do and can’t wait to get going on today’s episode.
In order to help you save more, earn more and live more abundantly on today’s show I’ll be covering:
- Quarantined? Keeping Your Kids Safe While Online
- Homeschooling Made Easy during Quarantine with Laurel Springs Academy
- Coronavirus and Caring for Your Emotional Wellbeing
LINKS FROM THE PODCAST:
Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to speak to a caring counselor
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255
www.laurelsprings.com/savingsangel for waived registration fee
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Quarantined? Keeping Your Kids Safe While Online
The Coronavirus outbreaks have led to the CDC is recommending social distancing and schools have been dismissed for several weeks. Our children are turning to the Internet for education and entertainment. How do you keep them safe while online?
Set a Routine
Some schools are offering online curricula so students don’t fall behind. Keep them on their regular school schedule during this time. It will feel less disruptive to the normal daily routine. If your child doesn’t have access to curricula have them review recent homework assignments and tests so it won’t be difficult when they finally do return to school. While the kids will feel they’re on vacation, setting a routine will help them navigate the stress of these unknown times.
Beyond school curriculum, resist the urge to just tell them to ‘do something educational.' My suggestion is to research documentaries, online classes, websites, and youtube videos that delve into subjects your kids are passionate about. Let them know they can game or watch entertaining videos after a couple of hours of feeding their brains.
Discuss the Dangers of Being Online
It is important that children understand that there are risks of infection in the digital world as it is in the physical world currently – which is why we distance ourselves from risk. Discuss with your children the importance of not talking to strangers online or giving out personal information on websites without talking to you first. This also includes clicking on links in emails or social media messaging services. Take this opportunity to discuss online bullying and how to separate themselves from it, not only for their own protection but to prevent them from doing it to others. Finally, discuss the concept of “forever.” Children need to understand what they do online will forever be there – even if they believe that messages on Snapchat disappear.
The easiest way to monitor your children while online is to place the computer or tablet in a common area where everyone hangs out. If this is not possible, there is parental control/monitoring software that will allow you to keep track of what sites are visited and who is communicating with your child. I've used Circle by Disney – which monitors from the router level – as opposed to each device. For devices, get to know parental controls for iPhone or android. If you don't fully understand the ins and outs, watch some videos. Know what social media sites your child uses and spot-check messaging.
Tell your children upfront that the online rules include monitoring so they don’t think you’re spying on them secretly. Too many children don’t report online issues until it’s too late, so keep an open dialogue. Check the browsing history; that’s a sure-fire way to see what sites were visited.
Streaming services have made it easy to watch pretty much anything at the click of a button. Some programming is not appropriate for the under 18 crowd to watch. Now is a good time to set up parental controls so if you still have to work while your child is home, they won’t be tapping into programming they shouldn’t be watching. All services should allow you to view a watching history in your admin section, as well.
When your children understand the rules of the cyber road it makes it easier for them to enjoy their time online while bringing you peace of mind during this scary time. From one parent to another, stay calm but informed, and your children will follow your lead. For more information about staying safe online, check out https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/feature-0038-onguardonline
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As we all spend time due to stay-at-home orders nationwide, parents are faced with the reality of homeschooling their children. Since schools had to very quickly transition from classroom to an online experience, most curricula were ill-prepared to meet that challenge. Because of that, children everywhere are seeing an increase in workload. My own sons are struggling with extra assignments and overloaded days. With talk of some schools not even reopening at all this year, what better time than now to introduce Laurel Springs Academy, an accredited, online private school for students in kindergarten through twelfth grade to my children, and yours.. For decades Laurel Springs Academy has delivered high-quality online instruction to thousands of students.
Laurel Springs is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and AdvancED, which means their transcripts are recognized by colleges and universities worldwide. They recognize that each child is a unique individual with their own personal interests, special talents, unique learning style. Their flexible learning program offers challenging and diverse elective courses.
Register your child at Laurel Springs dot com slash SAVINGSANGEL today and receive a waived registration fee. That’s Laurel Springs dot com slash SAVINGSANGEL for your waived registration fee. Laurel Springs dot com slash SAVINGSANGEL.
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Coronavirus and Caring for Your Emotional Wellbeing
As stay-at-home orders and social distancing continue, our emotional wellbeing may be taking a toll. The news is rampant with stories about suicide and depression rates, seniors alone in senior care facilities, lonely birthdays, overworked essential workers, and isolated individuals. We must get creative to reduce stress. And even if you aren’t feeling the strain, someone you know might. Check on them regularly.
Try Yoga or Meditation
In addition to the exercise benefit, yoga also focuses on emotional wellbeing as part of its practice. Learn new breathing techniques that expand the peacefulness of the mind. Check out these yoga studios offering free classes during this time:
Hold Family & Friends Video Conferences
While we may be physically apart, this doesn’t mean we can’t see our loved ones’ faces still. Use technology to your advantage. Set a standard time to video conference with each other. There are so many options available to us today for free: Skype, Apple FaceTime, Zoom, Google Hangouts, and Facebook Messenger.
Enjoy a Relaxing Bath
Do you remember the old Calgon commercials? “Calgon, take me away!” followed by someone taking a luxurious bath. Treat yourself to an hour of luxury. Light candles, play soothing music, and take a bubble bath. Using ingredients found in a grocery store, you can make your own bath bombs. Here is a great recipe:
Learn Something New
With all this time on our hands, now is the time to learn something new. Whether it’s a new language, a new recipe, how to sew, learn to draw, or how to garden, there are free online videos to help you expand your mind and knowledge.
Create a Sleep Sanctuary
The stress of this illness is keeping many people awake, and social distancing/ stay-at-home orders are throwing off our routines. Refrain from doing anything in your bedroom other than sleeping. Keep all TV and online watching to your living areas to eliminate the exposure to blue light in your bedroom. Turn off notifications on your devices so your sleep isn’t disturbed. Diffuse lavender into your bedroom to promote relaxation.
While it’s a trying and scary time for all of us, know that you aren’t alone. We are all in this together. If you are experiencing emotional distress related to COVID-19 call the Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to speak to a caring counselor or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255
– – – – – – —
If you’ve loved hearing everything on this podcast, SHARE THIS episode with a friend! People NEED this information. You and I, together, can change lives. I recommend taking a screenshot and posting on FB – or wherever you hang out most.
And as always, if you have any specific questions, or if there is something you’d like to hear me talk about, you can drop me a comment in the podcast feedback, write me on my Facebook group, or call my podcast hotline at 407.205.9250 and leave me a message. I’ll answer your question, write you back, or – with your permission – I might even share your question or story with others on this show.
Have a wonderful week – full of saving more, earning more, and living more abundantly – and thank you for listening!
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Hi there, I'm Josh Elledge, the Chief Executive Angel at SavingsAngel.com and welcome to the SavingsAngel Show. I'm podcasting to you while practicing self isolation with my family from an overcast Orlando, Florida. And while we're all practicing social distancing, some people are suffering greatly from loneliness and depression. If this affects you, or someone you love, know that we are in this together. I have some great tips and resources at the end of this podcast to help with mental health.
Now, I'm an extremely busy consumer expert, money saving advocate, syndicated newspaper columnist and the guy that turns digital entrepreneurs into media celebrities at UpMyInfluence.com. I love what I do and can't wait to get going on today's episode. So in order to help you save more, earn more and live more abundantly on today's show, I'm going to be covering if you are quarantined, which is, the answer is yes, how to keep your kids safe online. I'm sure they're doing a lot more online stuff right now. Also gonna talk about homeschooling Made Easy, how we can kind of help out with that. And also we're going to be talking about Coronavirus and caring for your emotional well being, all that and more. So let's go.
The Coronavirus outbreaks have led to the CDC recommending social distancing and schools have been dismissed for over a month now. Our children are turning to the internet for education and entertainment. But how do you keep them safe while online? Do you just let them have a free for all? No way. Now, the most important thing let's let's go through some tips here. I'm here to help ya.
Number one, we need to set a routine. Most schools are offering online curriculum so students don't fall behind and you can keep them on their regular scheduled during this time, it will feel less disruptive to their normal daily routine. They may not want to wake up at a certain time every morning, but it is kind of important that we set routines and we have regular schedule. It keeps us feeling like we have some normalcy in all of this. Okay? If your child doesn't have access to curricula, or just seems like really seriously, you're already done with schoolwork. Okay, you can have them review recent homework assignments and tests so it won't be so difficult when they finally do return to school. We don't want our kids to be falling behind and will the kids will feel like they're on vacation and probably have been acting like it. Setting a routine will help them navigate the stress of these unknown times. Now beyond school curriculum, resist the urge to just tell them to go do something educational. My suggestion is to research documentaries, online classes, websites, YouTube videos and so forth. That delve into the subjects. Your kids are passionate about if they're into space. Well, by all means there's a lot of great space stuff if they want, if they're at the age where maybe they're interested in learning how to code and they can code a basic game. You know what, there's a lot of great resources for that as well. Let them know that they can game or watch entertaining videos, after a couple of hours of feeding their brains, I highly recommend using a whole house filter that will set this for you. I'm a big fan of circle by Disney. That's what we use. And you can get really specific as to what your kids have access to and when they have access to it. So again, big fan, don't give them just unrestricted untethered access to the internet. It's just a recipe for disaster danger.
Alright, next, discuss the dangers of being online. You got to have the talk. It's important that children understand that there are risks of infection in the digital world, just as there are in the physical world currently, which is why we distance ourselves from risks. You had discussed with your children the importance of not talking to strangers online, giving out personal information on websites without talking to you first. And this also includes clicking on links in emails or social media messaging services. take this opportunity to discuss online bullying and how to separate themselves from it not only for their own protection, but to prevent them from doing it to others, even inadvertently, finally, discuss the concept of forever. Children need to understand that what they do online will forever be there. Even if people like Snapchat or etc say that, Oh, no, it's not even if they believe these messages on you know, on those platforms disappear again, that's not how the internet works. The internet is written in ink mark, that's a line from a social network.
All right, next, monitoring. Already tease this out. The easiest way to monitor your children on the line is to place their computer or tablet in a common area where everyone hangs out. If this is not possible, there is Parental Control monitoring software that allows you to keep track of what sites are visited and who's communicating with your child. Again, I've been using circle by Disney, they're not a sponsor, it's a good product. Okay, monitors from the router level, as opposed to each device. Way better. Alright. Now, you do need to know that if your kids have internet on their mobile devices, like on if they have a cell phone, well, that's something else that they could connect to, they could tether to their phone. And so you need to make sure that they have only certain access on their phone devices as well. So you're going to want to work with your phone provider, whoever the at&t Verizon, whatever, to make sure that that is also restricted so that they don't have access to all the bad stuff. Now for devices again, I also want you to get to know your parental controls for iPhone or Android. Okay, in your settings. Again, just google this, and you'll find lots of great information. But basically you want to go in and you want to set for iPhone, you want to set screen time settings. And that will give you great control over people in your family and what their restrictions are. Again, my suggestion is if you don't know how to do this, just read a couple articles, find a couple of videos online, you'll find them contact your your, your local family geek who can help out with this. But also you should know what social media sites your child is using, and you should spotcheck messaging. So what we do with our, with our younger two is that we just from time to time, we just say, Here, let me see your phone. And that's just a rule of having a phone. And then we just go through and just check things out. And, you know, just make sure they're safe and we're not doing it. We're not doing it because we want to get them in trouble. We don't want them to be in trouble. But you know, again, that's just a rule. We, you know, we give them space as they get older and older. But again, just being an active parent, we choose to spot check from time to time. Tell your children up front that the online rules include monitoring, so they don't think you're spying on them secretly, too many children don't report online issues until it's too late. So keep an open dialog, check the browsing history, that's a surefire way to see what sites were visited. But again, just kind of go through stuff. Again, if you're using the monitoring on the router level, well, you'll be able to measure everything they're in their history. Similarly, make sure that you know how you can do that with your cell phone provider.
All right, finally, let's talk about streaming services. Now streaming services have made it easy to watch pretty much anything at the click of a button. Now some programming is probably not appropriate for the under 18 crowd to watch. This is a good time to set up parental controls, review that so if you still have access or if you still have to work while your child is at home, or you're just busy all day, or you go to sleep early, and they might decide to stay up, we just don't want them tapping into programming that they shouldn't be watching. All services should allow you to view a watching viewing browsing history in your admin section as well. And again, if you don't know how to do this, please just Google it. I know this sounds like work. But honestly, if you learn these skills, you dedicate an hour to doing it. This is a skill that's going to be very valuable for you as long as you got kiddos in the house. When your children understand the rules of the cyber road, it makes it easier for them to enjoy their time online. while bringing you peace of mind during this scary time. Listen from one parent to another to stay calm. Feel free to stay informed and your children will follow your lead. Now for more information about staying safe online, you can go to Go to SavingsAngel.com and just find our article. And it's listed “Quarantined! Keeping Your Kids Safe While Online.” And we've got a link to a great resource from the FTC about keeping your safe, your kids safe online and keeping our kids safe well that is absolutely part of living abundantly.
As we all spend time due to stay at home orders nationwide, parents are faced with the reality of homeschooling their children, even if the school is providing all the resources. You know, as parents, we need to be involved in that. Now schools had to very quickly transition from classroom to an online experience. Most curricula, in my opinion, was very ill prepared to meet that challenge. Because of that children everywhere are seeing an increase in workload. My own sons are struggling with extra assignments, overloaded days, but then I hear from other people, there's just like nothing going on. So, to say it's inconsistent. Our teachers are working so hard. God bless our teachers, seriously! But listen with the talk of some schools, I mean, pretty much every school that I know of, they're not reopening this year. They're done. We're, we're there's no more school, right, and not until fall.
You know, what better time now to introduce some sort of great online homeschooling system. I'm a big fan of Laurel Springs Academy. It's an accredited online private school for students in kindergarten through 12th grade to my children and yours. For decades. Laurel Springs Academy has delivered high-quality online instruction to thousands of students. Like this is they're very, very well respected in the homeschool community, very well respected in the online curriculum community. They're accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. They're accredited by Advanced ED, Advanced ED, which means their transcripts are recognized by colleges and universities worldwide. So more so than just, you know, like we just kind of like threw this curriculum together and hopefully colleges will accept it, it's already good to go. They recognize that each child is unique, and their individual with their own personal interest, special talents, unique learning style. And so what's really cool is that's the flexible learning program that really allows kids to excel and they offer challenging and diverse elective courses. They got something for every kid so your kids will have a lot of fun with this. You can register your child at LaurelSprings.com slash SavingsAngel. And if you do that, you'll have zero registration fee which is very, very cool. Laurel Springs, by the way, is L A U R E L springs.com slash SavingsAngel and again, zero dollars. waived registration fee. That's LaurelSprings.com slash SavingsAngel.
Now, as stay at home orders and social distancing have continued now for quite some time, listen, our emotional well being may be taking a toll. It's, it's okay. Like I know, we all want to be strong, but we're all human. I want you to know that, you know, if if maybe you could just call it feeling and the feeling the blues or being, you know, kind of feeling like you're in the doldrums or, you know, or maybe you just feel a little bit more anxiety than normal. It's totally fine. Totally normal. Okay. The news is rampant with stories, unfortunately, about depression rates and even worse, seniors are alone in senior care facilities. There's lonely birthdays, overworked essential or workers, isolated individuals. Okay, you got to get creative to reduce stress you. You just have to. I know listen, for me, I mean, I do all my work from home, I've been working 12 to 15 hour days. And it's good because it keeps me busy. But one thing I absolutely have to do for my own mental health is that I have to schedule that time for me and my mental rejuvenation. Thank goodness, I got a little doggie that I can walk around the block. Thank goodness, you know, getting on quite, you know quite well with family you know, but we have to schedule that time, you know, if you can have some social distance time, but yet, you know, get together with friends, either online or, you know, again, you've got your own personal decisions on how you do this. But, you know, maybe if you get together outdoors stay, you know, six to eight feet away and, you know, go for a distance walk, I guess we could call it you know, just walk on, you know, at some distance or somehow. You know, however you, you want to do that it's, it's, this is your choice. But I recommend that you have to schedule this stuff in. I have a few other ideas here. Even if you aren't feeling the strain, someone, you know, might. And so one thing I'd ask you to do is check on them regularly. They might say they're doing just fine. But, but I want you to, and again, I'm sure you're doing a just a fantastic job at this, you know, I, I truly believe that people are good. And and I truly believe that, you know, this situation is really revealing. I'd say that the beautiful nature of so many people. Now, let me give you a few things that you can consider. Okay?
One, you may not be open to it, but I asked you to at least give it a shot. Okay. And that would be yoga or meditation. Now, in addition to the exercise benefit, and by the way, if you're like whoa, no, no, no, no, that's Whoo, that's too. Whoo hoo. Hey, look, if you're more of a person Praying kind of person, then come up with a way where you can commune with God in whatever that way that is for you. Now, specifically about yoga. All right, in addition to the exercise benefit alone, and the flexibility benefit, it also focuses on emotional wellbeing, as part of its practice. You know, even if all you did is just focused on the breathing, and you paid attention to your breath, you can actually just ask yourself, how you feel beforehand, and how you feel afterwards. And you can expand the peacefulness of your mind. So there's some really, really great yoga studios and lots of great stuff on YouTube. They're giving free classes. We have a link for several resources. By the way, if you go to SavingsAngel.com and look for the article that says “Coronavirus and Caring for your Emotional Wellbeing.”
Next, hold family and friends video conferences. Even if you don't really want to,
well, we may be physically apart. This doesn't mean that we can't see our loved ones faces. Still, it's kind of fun because we've actually been getting together that with people around the country and around the world family members, that I wouldn't have been doing this anyway. But see what we're making up for. I believe that humans are naturally social people, we're social of course we're people, we're social creatures. And so what you can't fill with maybe going to work or spending more time at the store or busy restaurants or that sort of thing, fill it in with getting together with your loved ones, faces on zoom, etc. So you can use technology to your advantage, set a standard time to video conference with each other. We've been doing this on Sunday afternoon and Sunday evening. We got obviously two sides of the family. There's so many options available to us today for free: Skype, Apple FaceTime, Zoom, Google Hangouts, Facebook Messenger, whatever you want to do. Okay, you can also set up or you can play games on these devices as well. Just how you do that is, you know, like, I actually asked about this on my Facebook feed, what games you guys are playing, and I had a lot of great ideas. So we set up with jackbox.tv. And so one person will just share their screen, and then everybody else can use their mobile phones to kind of play along fun.
Next, you know, you could enjoy a relaxing bath. You remember the old Calgon commercials? No? Okay, well, then I'm dating myself, but they would say Calgon, take me away. And you can Google that. And you can see that on YouTube. And you can see what I'm talking about. Yes, I believe it's from the 70s and then you'd see someone taking a luxurious bath. You could treat yourself to an hour of luxury. I don't think I could do that for I'm not a, I'm not a bath person. Like if I've gone for a long run, I might do it. But listen, I feel uncomfortable even sharing this idea. This was, this was Alissa on my team's idea. I, obviously, I didn't come up with this, but I could tell you that Mrs. SavingsAngel appreciates this. Although she doesn't go to the extent that Alissa is suggesting here about lighting candles, playing soothing music and taking a bubble bath, I'd say Mrs. Elledge grabs the iPad and streams something funny on Netflix. So you decide either you're going to go the funny Netflix route, or you can go with the candles, music and bubble bath and an hour of luxury.
Now listen, you could get all of the ingredients at a grocery store. You can make your own bath bombs, and there's actually some great recipes online. If you want to learn how to make your own bath bombs.
All right, next, learn something new with all this time on our hands. Now as I, see I feel so silly. I'm I'm a dude talking to our SavingsAngel audience about 80% female. I just, Alissa, you've made me blush. encouraging our mom audience to take some time and have themselves a nice bubble bath. Alright, so here we go.
With all this time on our hands now is it time to learn something new, whether it's a new language, a new recipe, how to sew, learn to draw how to garden, there are free online videos to help expand your mind and knowledge on every thing. Again, here's another thing. I'm not saying you need to do something that you're like, Josh, I just don't have the energy for it. Totally fine. I totally get it. But would you be open to at least trying and so even if you don't feel like starting something like that, just just kick it out and and see what you think. I remember doing woodworking in my last year when I was in the Navy. Because I had some spare time I was an isolated duty in the Aleutian Islands in Alaska. So I you know, I had some time to kill so I'm like, Okay, well, that resources there and it's really inexpensive and so I thought okay, well I'm going to learn some woodworking and there was actually a volunteer there that would help help me create a CD rack. I built it out of wood, I built it myself.
Alright, finally, I like this one, get really good at creating a sleep sanctuary. The stress of this illness is keeping many people awake and social distancing, and stay at home orders, throwing off our routines. So I want you to refrain from doing anything in the bedroom other than sleeping, you might be like what? Consider this, maybe just test it out for like, just three to five days and keep all TV and online watching to your living areas. Or at the very least, maybe you're only like maybe get a separate chair or something like that. But when you're in your bed, save that for sleeping and you know, pillow talk time and stuff like that.
Keep all TV and online watching to your living areas eliminate the exposure to blue light. Now this is one thing that I am very, very big on. Now if you must look at your devices, make sure you find where you have the color temperature setting on your phone. All right, and it's probably under display in brightness. Okay, and then you're going to have on the iPhone, it's called True tone. Right? And so I think that that's it no night shift, that's what it is. And it's going to make your temperature more warm or less warm. Trying make it as warm as you can handle it. And you could go one further and if you need reading glasses, then get amber tinted reading glasses. If you don't need reading glasses then just get non-prescription or non you know nothing to it Amber. It's it'll filter out the blue light and this will really help If the excitement that you feel because it's the blue light will emulate sunlight and so it kind of wakes up your brain. Also very important, make sure you turn off notifications on every device, so your sleep isn't disturbed, no notifications. Also, you could try a little bit for extra bonus here, you could diffuse lavender into your bedroom to promote relaxation; could do a little essential oil and stuff. You know, smells nice.
Alright, listen, while it is trying and scary time for all of us, just know that you're not alone. We're all doing this together. And if you're experiencing emotional distress related to COVID-19 please call this, please write down this number please. I'm going to give you a couple of numbers. And I want you to write this down just so you have it handy. Not just for you. But for someone you know like if you know that they're they're just dealing with some stuff right now. There is a national or Disaster Distress helpline and that phone number is 800. Go ahead, write it down 800-985-5990 or you can text TalkWithUs all one word, talk with us. to 66746 and you can speak with a caring counselor, or there's also the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255. Please do me a favor, write that down, put it in your phone. And if it ever comes up in conversation, you're just feeling unsettled about something or someone, just pass it along, and just make sure that they have access to this information.
If you feel comfortable in sharing this podcast episode with someone I would be honored if you did that. All you have to do is just take a screenshot with your phone, just, you know, you'd push the top volume button and the power button on your iPhone at the same time, they'll take a screenshot, again, sorry Android users. I don't know how to do it. But I'm sure there's a great way and then just send it in a text or send it in a DM or post on social media. And I would be honored if you felt inclined to share this episode with a friend. I promise I will serve them with all my heart. Now, as always, if you have any specific questions or if there's something you'd like to hear me talk about, you could drop me a comment on the podcast feedback, write me on my Facebook group or call the podcast hotline right now. 407-205-9250 and leave me a message. We get a lot of great ideas. And so I want to thank everyone who has left a voicemail there. And thank you, by the way, thank you for the kind words that we get from it from time to time, it really makes a difference. I honestly, you know, I no longer really need to do this podcast, business wise for any reason. To me, it's just something I love doing and I'm just honored to be able to serve you and your family and your loved ones with this show. I'll answer your question right back or with your permission, and even share your story with others on the show. With that, have a wonderful, full of saving more, earning more and living more abundantly. And thank you for listening.