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Posts published in “Day: December 6, 2007”

Highlands Rotary continues tradition of Truck raffle during Chili Feast

HIGHLANDS– When the weather gets colder, it is said to be “chili” weather. So, the Highlands Rotary Club is planning for their 33rd Annual Chili Feast, to be held on Saturday, February 2nd at St. Jude Catholic hall.
This event has gained city-wide recognition, and because of its success in raising money for Rotary community projects, plus the fun that it brings to all participants, it has now been widely copied by other clubs and churches around Houston.
But the original, complete with famous “Chester’s Chili”, will be in Highlands. Club members emphasize that the $100 ticket makes a great Christmas gift or stocking stuffer. Someone will win the new 2008 Chevy Silverado Pickup, or one or the other 13 prizes that include computers, cameras, iPod, GPS system, LCD TV, and much more.
All the club members help sell tickets, so ask one soon. Chili Feast chairperson is Tricia Scott, and president this year is Charlie Ward. Many local businesses, including Woodforest Bank, Rainbow Jewelry and Foodtown, will also have tickets.

Making a list…

Looks like Brer Possum done come back ‘cause he left his marking on the back porch last night while grazing on the sunflower seeds. The Mrs. says it’s one of the “chillens” because she saw it walk in front of the sliding glass door last nite.
By the size of the markings, I’d say there was a Momma too. Big or little, it’s going for a ride in the morning to where the rich folks stays. They can enjoy Christmas there.
Speaking of Christmas, you finish your shopping yet?
Sent out 33 emails to friends and acquaintances asking what they planned to get their significant other for Christmas. Out of that, there were 13 replies although some should not be put into print, but you know me.
One reply was: The only thing he wants is a Hummingbird fish finder as his is broken. So guess that’s what he will get. what are you getting yours?
Second reply was: nada

Third was: Haven’t a clue?  Any suggestions?
What are you getting your SO ?
Fourth was: We just bought ourselves a new mattress for Christmas.   I will get him a new radar detector, a ladder for his boat and a new flight bag.  Why, you got some more ideas?
Fifth was: Well, it was a picture similar to what was left on the back porch this morning, enough said.
Sixth was: A Rabbit
Seventh was: I don’t have a significant other….
Eighth was: My significant other is not significant anymore.  We are separated.
But may I suggest something personal that only that person can enjoy. 
Clothing and accessories present a size, style, and taste problem. (jewlery?, a beautiful broach?, an exquisit cameo?, a nice watch?) something unique, something personal.
Ninth was: Probably the same as last year…use your imagination.
Tenth was: I just found this email in my “junk email” folder. I’m not sure why that happens sometimes. This one didn’t even have attachments to it.
Anyway….I am getting him a GPS tracker.
Eleventh was: A sack of Cole! With this I responded if he meant Coal and he replied it was his last name…duh
Twelfth: Took the wife shopping (on a whim) in the ladies’ clothing section of the Base Exchange, and she picked out some nice things for herself and then announced that what she’d purchased was her Christmas things.  Now truth be told, I’ll probably buy her something else like a box of candy or some other small doodad, but it’s a “she’s happy, I’m happy” kinda thing. 
Last but not least: Have not decided yet.  We are talking about getting something together and including our anniversary gift.  Like redoing our downstairs to make a home theater complete with BIG TV and plush movie theater type rocking chairs or recliners.  Need a real popcorn machine to make it complete.  Maybe a ticket booth if any friends try to join us. 

Will “subprime” loan crunch affect you?

If you’ve even casually followed the news over the past several months, you’ve probably heard about “subprime loans.” But the issue can be confusing, and if you’re like most people, you really just want a couple of questions answered: How might these subprime loans affect the economy? And will I need to adjust my investment strategy?
To begin with, let’s define subprime loans. Generally speaking, a subprime loan is a mortgage made to a borrower who might not otherwise qualify for a loan. Subprime lenders typically charged these borrowers higher interest rates, but some subprimes were adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs), which meant they carried a lower rate for the first few years of the loan. Many subprime borrowers took out ARMs, hoping their credit would improve enough for them to qualify for a better rate before the mortgage rate was adjusted upward. When this didn’t happen, they were hit with higher payments and many faced foreclosure. Because many of these mortgages had been resold and then packaged into other financial vehicles, the bad loans hurt these investments.

Ultimately, the subprime loan problem might jolt at least two sectors of the financial markets: housing and financial services. So, housing-related investments, such as real estate companies, and financial services firms, such as mortgage lenders, might experience some rough roads. Also, the subprime situation could lead to a potential slowdown in overall consumer spending. Why? Because if lending standards tighten, people may find it more difficult to tap home equity loans and lines of credit. And if consumer spending does slow, it could affect corporate profits, a key driver of stock prices.
As an individual investor, what moves, if any, should you make to prepare yourself for any potential subprime “aftershocks”?
To begin with, don’t get so caught up in a possible subprime-fueled downturn that you overlook the many positive factors about the current investment outlook. Although the real estate industry is slumping, the rest of the economy remains relatively strong. Furthermore, inflation and interest rates remain low and stable, and corporate profits still exceed expectations.
And no matter what happens in the investment world, you can hardly go wrong by following these tried-and-true techniques:
*Look for quality. Quality investments, such as the stocks of strong, established companies, historically tend to fall less than other investments in down markets, and they have frequently lead the way in the recoveries that follow. Past performance is not an indication of future results.
*Choose an appropriate mix of investments. Build a portfolio containing a variety of investments that are suitable for your goals, risk tolerance and time horizon. While diversification, by itself, can’t guarantee a profit or protect against a loss in declining markets, it can help reduce the effects of market volatility.
*Hold investments for the long term. By following a “buy-and-hold” investment strategy, you can reduce your commission costs and avoid some of the other problems that can result from frequent buying and selling. Once you buy an investment, consider holding it until either your needs change or the investment itself has evolved in an unexpected way.
By looking beyond the possible turmoil and sticking with good investment habits, you may well escape some of the problems caused by the subprime fallout – while you stay on track toward your long-term investment goals.

Copper theft robs MB of phone service

MONT BELVIEU– More than 1,300 Verizon phones customers lost power on Nov., 30 when a section of phone cable was stolen in Mont Belvieu.
The theft was discovered when Verizon received a disruption alarm in the 1200 lock of FM 565. When crews arrived them discovered 70’ of 1800 stalpeth phone cable line missing. It is believed that a person or persons climbed the poles and cut the wire in order to resell it or scrap copper.
Copper thefts have been commonplace for Verizon. Between Oct. 9 and 16 there were five separate incidents of phone cable theft in the Crosby and Huffman areas alone. Verizon said that, to date, they have lost over $350,000 to copper thieves over the last two months.
The theft follows a nationwide trend which has developed this year. The Harris County Sheriff’s office said that they saw a spike in air conditioner thefts during the spring and summer months.
On Nov. 3 members of Grace United Methodist Church of Baytown were preparing food for a Men’s Breakfast when the caught a copper thief who had ridden to the church on a bicycle and was attempting to cut the wires in an outside conduit when he was observed.