All posts by ECVtalks

We’re Back! ☺

So do you ever have one of those weeks where everything goes wrong and it messes up your whole season?

You know the kind: come home from a business trip sick with appointments scheduled back to back. Then you drop your phone on a Sunday evening right after the repair places close. You get another phone and in between fighting your summer cold for the next 2 weeks and meeting with clients you try to install all of your apps. Eventually you discover you didn’t fully set up your assistant on the blog, your new phone doesn’t always get all of your incoming texts and you’re locked out because God only knows where those back up codes are. (Really if you know where yours are feel free to brag in the comments because you’re special.)

So months later after that and other drama which won’t be mentioned here, we are back! To the blogs we frequently read, comment and reblog, expect an overflow of activity.


Wine, Women & Wealth seminar – May 2016

This month we have another first time male (gasp!) speaker, physical trainer Colby Ebanks. He spoke about what to look for in a personal trainer before opening it up to the audience members’ questions.


A Personal Trainer Should:
  1. Focus on your goals more than anything.
  2. Tailor make a fitness program for your specific needs.
  3. Vary your workouts from day to day by how you feel.
Colby mentioned that trainers that he has worked with in the past have their own goals and agenda for their clients and don’t really take into account what the client wants out of their workout plan. If this has been your experience, he suggested to either push your trainer to make the switch or find another trainer.
On the second note, he clarified that you can tell if your trainer ahs made a plan specifically for you based on whether he or she has looked at you analyzing how you are built and what health and physical condition you are in. Lastly, he spoke on how stress and other emotional issues can have a physical effect on how your body responds to your workout on any particular day. Therefore a good personal trainer will be able to vary your workout based on the type of day you’re having.
Here are a few of the audience questions and his responses:
Is there an advantage to vegan/vegetarian diet?
For the average everyday person there is no advantage to being vegan or vegetarian. Those diets are advantageous only for specific physical conditions, like people who have high blood pressure, blood sugar issues, or a hereditary predisposition for certain health concerns.

I have an active job so do I need to work out?
The professional recommendations  are 300 minutes of  light/moderate exercise per week or 150 minutes of high intensity exercise per week.

There were some different types of exercise he mentioned that you may want to add in if your job did meet the 300 minutes of light/moderate exercise recommendation, so check with Mr. Colby Ebanks for the specifics.

The next speaker of the evening was the one and only, the original WWW male speaker, Frank Demeno.


He began by asking the audience what do you think of when you hear the words ‘financial plan.’ Some of the responses from the audience were

  • Saving money
  • Investing
  • Retirement – IRA/401K
  • And surprisingly, Life Insurance (the topic which Frank was going to speak)

The audience member who mentioned life insurance had a personal story which I found moving. Her family thought they had done the right thing in purchasing term life insurance for her mother. Unfortunately, however, her mother outlived the term &  they only received $1.57 when she died.

People are often sold on term life insurance because of it’s low cost and don’t think about the reality that the majority of these policies expire without paying out (i.e. you don’t die during the term). The common phrase is to ‘buy term & invest the difference’ which is a good idea until you insert people. Americans don’t tend to invest the difference; this is a nation of consumers. That’s why a permanent life insurance like an indexed universal life policy is like a better strategy.

But permanent life insurance is too expensive?
Is it really? Yes it costs more but you can’t outlive your policy as long as you make those monthly contributions and you build cash value. Cash value that you can use tax-free, whereas with the other investment options (savings and retirement plans) you’re paying taxes continually or when you need the cash during retirement. What’s more expensive: sacrificing a little bit now to have a lot later or being in dire need later during your retirement years or during the turmoil of losing a loved one?

Well I’ll just buy term and be very dedicated about investing the difference to build up savings for myself and my family.

Life insurance builds a financial future by saving money, but you get the estate up front. An indexed universal life policy is like buying term and having the insurance company invest the difference for you. But while that investment is growing, if you happen to die your family still gets $250,000.

If you had to spend $70,000 now for a quarter million dollar estate, could you pay it? Most people would answer “No.”  Well, how about if we do it the American way & set up a payment plan $175 a month?

Now if you tried to save $175 each month, how long would it take you to get to $250,000? Frank had the audience calculate it and it would take about 119 years. So let’s say you get the inexpensive $250,000 10 or 15 year term policy and save $175 a month. At the end of the term, 1) you don’t have a $250,000 saved and 2) you no longer have a life insurance policy that pays out $250,000 on the event of your death.  Now you’re 10 or 15 years older making the next term policy a little more expensive and maybe challenging your monthly $175 savings plan. Which do find to be the more sound path to take?

 The last point Frank made this evening was if you take a 1 year old & create a $250K policy, they would be a millionaire by their sixties. So grandparents instead of that trip to Disney World, contribute to your grandchildren’s indexed universal life policy.
Ladies, if you’re in the Jacksonville area be sure not to miss June’s Wine, Women & Wealth seminar with summer travel tips and how to create your own pension. Check back for more details.

Wine, Women & Wealth April 2016 – Who gets Grandma’s Yellow Pie Plate?

Here in the U.S. it’s a few days away from the tax deadline. So a lot of invitees to this month’s Wine, Women & Wealth seminar might have looked at the title and wondered, “How is this one worth my time when I have to get my taxes done by Monday?”


Well it was worth it and it had a little tax fact that I had forgotten about. But more on that later.

The first speaker was Charlsey Baumeier from NetLaw. For more about NetLaw watch the video below.

Charlsey brought up an eye-opening fact in her presentation. All you parents who have bright-eyed 18 year-olds about to graduate & head of to college, what if they have a medical emergency? Will you be able to make medical decisions for them if they are unable to? From a legal standpoint the answer is no unless they have stated that you are their healthcare surrogate. That healthcare surrogate paperwork is included in the NetLaw package.

So what about the yellow pie plate? So many families experience additional turmoil when a loved one dies fighting over belongings because there is no will to state who gets what. A will is another one of the documents that comes with the NetLaw package.

OK back to the tax fact that I had forgotten about: the IRS still wants their money even in the year that you die. Who’s going to be left with that burden in your family? Have you decided yet? And will there be Money to handle it after your funeral expenses? If you don’t have a plan, speak to financial advisor and begin working on one. Need a financial professional? Contact Marie Edwards.

6 Daily Skin Care Routine For Working Women: Simple And Easy

6 Daily Skin Care Routine For Working Women: Simple And Easy

By Gee Briones

Each morning is a challenge for busy women – rushing around the home to prepare breakfast, finishing other tasks from the office, and whole lot more! So, how about your beauty routine? You might be skipping it. Oh no! That’s not good if you’re doing so. Especially when it comes to your skin care, you must pay a great attention. Lack of skin care can end up to dull skin, ageing, acne breakouts, and other negative effects.

So, we’ve searched for skin care tips a busy woman like you can do to make sure you’ll have an easy and effective skin care routine.

    1. Wash your face every morning. Use with a gentle cleanser. First off, know your skin types before you use your daily face cleanser to avoid negative effects. In case you have dry skin, use a non-lathering facial cleanser. For oily skin, use a gentle foaming face. In case of sensitive acne prone skin, select an acne-fighting cleanser.
    2. Use toners. Not all facial cleansers carefully clean the trace of oil and dirt. That’s why it’s best to use toner. Use a swipe of cotton pad and dab with toner in your skin and you’ll see it will clean the dirt and residue left by facial wash. When you tone, your pores shrink which prevents acne and pimple from forming. Just remember, always use an alcohol-free toner.
    3. Moisturize. All types of skin need moisturizing. Also, if you need to go out in the morning or during the day, do not forget to apply sunscreen. For busy women, pick a multipurpose product which has sun protection, hydration and at the same time, used as foundation. Products such as BB and CC creams can be your BFF. They act as serum, moisturizer, foundation, primer, and mostly as sunscreen with SPF.
    4. Always bring facial wipes or facial cleansing sprays with your accessories. Whether you have oily, dry or combination skin, everyone has to deal with oil and sweats. In case your work requires you to spend a great amount of time under the sun (if you’re working in the field, for instance), always bring a bottle of sunscreen in your bag. Apply every after 2-3 hours.
    5. When you got home after the whole day’s work, you may feel awful and look haggard. Imagine that sweaty, oily, and tired face… not a very good sight, right? Wash your face with facial cleanser and then use toner. Too, you can also spray some rose water to freshen up instantly.
    6. Here’s a bedtime skin care routine for you. Wash your face with a mild cleanser half an hour before sleeping. Or, you can just wipe your face with baby wipes. Dab your night cream and gently massage it to your face. You can also use a good and gentle eye cream. The best night cream is the one which is rich in antioxidants and other anti-ageing ingredients. The most important, get a complete and great night’s sleep. This is because our cell repair happens during our sleep.

Additional Tips for Busy Women to Keep Skin Glowing and Healthy

Why you Need to Exfoliate

As we age, our skin is constantly renewing itself and shedding dead skin cells. Exfoliation can speed help us achieve a brighter skin tone. It’s not necessary to exfoliate daily. But it’s important to do this at least twice a week. Aster exfoliating, use toner and moisturizer.

How about Face Mask? You can prepare and put your face pack while you are getting your breakfast or lunch ready. Meaning, you can still do some home chores while you have the face pack on.

To maintain a healthy skin in your busy schedule, here are additional things to remember:

– Sip warm water and lemon juice as a detoxifier to start your day.

– Avoid junk foods. Instead, consume fresh, organic fruits and green, leafy vegetables. They are full of antioxidants and nutrients.

– Make sure to rehydrate by drinking 6-8 glasses of water daily.

– Get a good night’s sleep. Nothing can replace that as the best form of rest.

– Use natural ingredients for your face pack. Do some search about avocado, for instance.

– Have a moisturizer and lip balm in your bag, as well as moisturizer, especially if you’re working inside an air-conditioned room.

Know more skin care tips? Feel free to share.

FreshyBag is not just a lunch bag it’s a style bag that can store your food for a long time with the best materials in the world.

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Wine, Women & Wealth March 2016 – Not Your Mom’s 401k

March’s Wine, Women & Wealth started with a recap of the ways to save for retirement since having little or no savings was one of the Five Mistakes Women Make with Money that were discussed during February’s seminar.

Savings Instrument Tax Impact
Savings Accounts & CDs Taxable
IRAs, 401Ks & Annuities Tax Deferred
Life insurance (cash value) & Roth Ira Tax Exempt

Believe it or not this month the guest was a guy and not one of the two we usually make an exception for at Wine, Women & Wealth! Steve Albritton, CFP and Regional VP from Howard Capital Management spoke about how challenging it is to pick what to invest in inside of your 401k. Despite the challenges, he gave the following stats on how many people seek professional help.

For less than $80 a year they offer a product called the HCM 401(k) optimizer that gives you personalized, professional recommendations on what to pick within your employer-provided 401k, 403b or 457a. If you were in attendance, you could have gotten 1 of the 2 free trial memberships he gave away. For more info, email Ms. ME.

In closing he shared the video below that demonstrates why it’s to your benefit to get professional help versus going it alone.


Our second guest speaker was our friend Jen from MetLife. She spoke about the importance of and the steps involved in creating a plan for retirement.

  1. Decide when in the future do you want to retire
  2. Determine the money you need for essentials, wants and wishes
  3. Create a plan from now to retirement

The last thing she discussed is how to make your savings last. She mentioned three sources of “guaranteed” income. Do you think you know what they are? Do you need help determining how to make it last?

In closing, one way to save that she stated is often overlooked is through cutting costs. Go through your monthly bills and look for ways to save at least once a year.

Next month’s Wine, Women & Wealth Topic: Your Grandma’s Yellow Platter. If you’re in Jacksonville, Florida don’t miss it. Check back for the link to reserve your seat.