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I’ve not written much lately except for blogs as I planned and then executed a large trip to Africa to do some humanitarian work. This was an effort coordinated with my church, which culminated in a month in Ethiopia and South Sudan, which took place in Feb/March of 2012. Here are a few favorite photographs from the trip.
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My essay “Scary Letters” was reprinted by order levitra onlinebuy levitra onlineThe Snohomish County Business Journal. The essay quite some time ago, but I’ve just learned about it, and it made my day.
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LendingClub, a leader in peer to peer lending, asked me to weigh in on affording alternative education for children, while still living frugally. There’s a lot of middle ground between private school tuition and basic public school.
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A while back, I was given the opportunity to share some “frugal living” advice with the Parenting.com “Family On A Budget Bootcamp” Participants.
What a journey it was to follow the bootcampers in their journey. If you would like to read my advice to them, it is online here.
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I’ve let this site languish lately as I’ve been keeping very busy with freelance work. I’ve added a new regular client, writing for www.finovate.com. I’m thrilled to be working with this great team and covering the fascinating world of financial innovation, I’ve covered this space before at Prosper Lending Review, so it is great to be coming back to it.
Also, this year, I’ve expanded my small editing practice. I mostly focus on small businesses whose owners have English as a second language. I offer quick-turnaround editing services to correct spelling, grammar, punctuation and formatting for a variety of documents, from blog articles and business letters to menus. I charge by the word at a very affordable rate, usually determined off of a writing sample from the client. I have some experience with other languages (French, Spanish and Amharic) so can often help with choosing the proper English word or tense to convert a sentence into.
I was pleased this week to receive this endorsement from a long-time client Michele Benza, an image consultant in California.
This is my personal letter of recommendation for Jessica Ward.
I hired Jessica as my editor over a year ago. As English is my second language I need someone like Jessica to ensure that the documents I write, as well as my Ezines are perfect with no spelling or grammar errors. Jessica has been editing my articles for over a year and it has been a great experience to work with her.
Jessica is also very helpful in others areas like business and social networking.
I highly recommend Jessica, she has always delivered excellent work and to make it even better, Jessica is extremely reliable and delivers her work on a timely fashion.
I was thrilled to receive such a kind endorsement. If you would like to learn more about Michele’s practice, I encourage you to visit her website at http://www.michelebenza.com/. If you’re not in California, don’t fret–she works virtually too!
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This is my first stab at fiction. Earlier this week I was playing around with writing some scenes in my planning notebook. Would love to know what you think. I’m intending this for a YA audience I think…but things could change.
I’m thinking this will be the opening scene for my NaNoWriMo novel. Thoughts? Ideas? Feedback? 1st draft. Totally rough.
He didn’t come home last night. Brooklyn to Jersey–a common commute. He usually calls if he’s out late, but dad is a silent type. He always has his reasons.
I urged mom to call the police and report dad missing. She insists that everything will be fine–but I sure can’t tell that from looking at her. She’s fidgeting around the house. Cleaning, tidying. The cleaners were here yesterday, but it looks like she’s expecting company. It’s making me nervous so I’m headed to my room to study.
At least, I’ll pretend to study.
This morning, in drippy black paint on our red front door was the word Omerta and a black hand print. Stupid vandals. Seriously–who tags in this neighborhood? It’s gated–of course, every pizza delivery man has the code–maybe one has a creepy artistic streak?
I miss my dad. He’s not my “real dad” but he’s been in the picture for a long time. He’s a great stepfather and has always treated mom and I as the center of the world. His business keeps him busy though. He’s the biggest diamond seller in New York. Being the biggest anything in New York will keep a person busy.
My dictionary didn’t have “Omerta” but Google tells me it’s an Italian noun meaning “secrecy sworn by oath; or a code of silence.”
Now I’m sure it’s the creepy pizza delivery guy. The goth one that’s always so twitchy and won’t make eye contact. Pizza, Italians–they go together. At least that’s what my dad says. He’s Italian–fourth generation, he should know.
I knew that pizza guy was a freak.
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It’s been a pretty busy summer. I scaled back my writing a lot and focused on some classes and writing exercises.
I’m still writing a Prosper Lending Review, and also now as a guest writer for DebtKid.com. I’ve had a few essays published as well, my favorite being “Dimples in the Rain” which was published by Divine Caroline.
My single greatest project has been the completion of a fully-rebuilt blog for frugal family living (this was a project I originally began last year), The Penny-Wi$e Family. I’m also working on two e-books for readers, which I expect to have completed before NaNoWriMo begins in November.
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I’ll be taping Job Club with Tory Johnson later today, and I think it is scheduled to run on Wednesday. This is my first television appearance. We’ll be talking about my essay “Dear John, Thanks for the Layoff” which ran on the BusinessWeek.com Web site last month.
If you are looking for more information about our family, thrifty living or my other projects, this Web site has a link to nearly everything, except for my two blogs, so I’ll post those here below.
Our family/adoption blog is here: www.jessc098.blogspot.com, and here you can learn more about our family’s experience with older-child and special needs adoptions. Also, it’s a great place to check in for the latest funnies from the kids, which are always labeled “Oh Dear.” My kids are clever, observant and kind and come up with a lot of these funny little observations.
I started a blog called “Pennywise Family: Laid Off and Loving it” at www.pennywisefamily.blogspot.com. This started almost immediately after my layoff (the next week I think) and detailed how we calculated the costs of working, the savings of having a parent at home, the cost-cutting triage that we did initally just in case of financial shortfalls. I also regularly post other’s ideas and recommendations for cost-cutting.
No need to feel like a lurker, jump in the conversation, comment and ask questions, I almost always comment back in a few hours.
**Update: the interview appears here: http://abcnews.go.com/Video/playerIndex?id=7865743**
All the best,
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My other small business, which is usually fairly low-key, really revved up in May, so I cut back my writing calendar a lot. Here’s a few of my recent posts–all with Prosper Lending Review, a blog about peer-to-peer finance and investing.
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This was my first food story, for Seattle’s Child, “The Full Plate” appears in their food section. The story was prompted by the plan to take my kids this summer to pick our own berries to freeze and preserve.