Be A Listening Bird and Watch the Dollars Fly Into Your Pockets

I just had my front lawn landscaped.  I have been trying to get this particular job done and off my To Do list for seven years.  Yes, SEVEN years.  I’ve hired people, we’ve sat down and worked out plans, picked out plants, and they don’t show up.  Very frustrating. (Luckily, I hadn’t paid any of them!)

But, as of last night, my yard looks Be-You-Ti-Ful!  I am SO happy that I don’t have the ugliest house on the block anymore, I could just sit on my front porch and giggle.  That’s how pretty it is.

And, yet, I’m a little annoyed, okay, a lot annoyed, with my landscaper.  He’s a great guy, and he’s creative and most of all, he showed up.  All of which I’m thrilled about.  However, throughout this whole process, since our first meeting back in February, I kept telling him: “Joe, I want my yard to be beautiful, but I don’t want to have to do anything.  I have dollars, and I will give them to YOU to do it.  I just don’t have the time.”

I used those very words:  I just don’t have the time.

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Kiva.org: A Hand Up, Not A Hand Out

Have you ever heard of the phrase “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, but TEACH a man to fish and you feed him for life”?  Kiva.org is an organization that doesn’t teach men and women to fish as much as, with your help, it gives them the tools to be able to catch fish.

Kiva.org is a non-profit organization that works with what’s called “micro-lenders” in other countries to facilitate loans between you and an a would-be entrepreneur.  This is NOT a place where you give money away.  At Kiva.org you LOAN people money, as little as $25, to start or expand the business of their dreams.  Here’s how it works:  You give Kiva $25.  They then loan the money to what they call a “Field Partner”, what I referred to as a “micro-lender” above, and then the Field Partner loans the money to a small business person to get their idea off the ground.  Once this small business person’s business is making money, they repay the loan to the Field Partner, who then gives it back to Kiva.org, who then gives it back to you.  At that point, you can then take the money back, or, you can loan it out again.

Continue reading Kiva.org: A Hand Up, Not A Hand Out