Archive for July 2013

Have a Family Reunion You Can Be Proud Of

Imagine having a conversation with a 97-year-old former teacher, who is still able to school you! Momma Bertha Humphrey Payne often reminds younger people, “I’ve forgotten more than you all will ever know!” While everyone gets a great kick out of it, the wise family matriarch is actually correct! She is still brilliant, and she is no laughing matter! We feel blessed to have her as well as our other elders who are still with us. Who else will share our family history with us? How else will we learn about our family treasures?


Every family has a legacy (good, bad, or ugly)! Getting to know your family’s spiritual, emotional, and financial legacies are of vital importance. If you discover that your family’s legacy is toxic, you can seek ways to change it for your family. Preservation is the key if you have a healthy family legacy. When Black Family Month was established in July of 2006, that was the purpose. How can Black families be preserved? Shaun McLaughlin, founder of Black Family Month, advises families to nurture “through education, health, and self improvement.”

July is also observed as National Family Reunion Month, and millions of Americans are traveling to various destinations. The Payne Family Reunion was where we had the opportunity to attend a celebration honoring our 97-year-old relative. Although we did not attend all of the family reunion activities, we have attended several family reunions. We are proud of our family’s efforts in hosting family reunions throughout the years. Here are steps you can take to help you have a family reunion of which you can be proud:

  • Plan ahead. One year in advance is the typical time. Beaches, cruises, and theme parks are popular destinations. Family compatibility (for example, the number of non-swimmers vs. swimmers) and other issues must be considered.
  • Make sure that it is cost-effective.
  • Create fun for everyone to enjoy. Activities are often whole group, but make sure that activities are appropriate for all age groups.
  • Incorporate educational activities. Marcus Garvey said, “A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.”
  • Develop a family covenant to re-establish a spiritual discipleship plan. If your family is not spiritual, you may want to re-establish principles for living.
  • Commit to maintaining contact through a family website or Facebook page. Steve Nix, a professional forester, wrote: “Leaves manufacture a tree’s food.” Similarly, you must nourish your family tree if you expect it to live.

Have you had a family reunion of which you were not proud? Please comment.

Entrepreneur of the Month-July (Series 1 of 4)


I am pleased to acknowledge Ms. Roanita Jenkins, owner of Roanita Jenkins Insurance Agency, as the second “Entrepreneur of the Month.” The Monroe, Louisiana, native is the daughter of Mr. Ervin “Peter” Turner and Mrs. Kathleen Turner. She attended Robinson Elementary, Ouachita Junior High, and Ouachita Parish High. Roanita and her brother, Christopher Earl Turner, also learned about entrepreneurship throughout their secondary education years. They worked in several businesses owned by their parents, including AAA Cleaning Service and Pete’s Fried Chicken.

She says, “Actually, entrepreneurship was introduced to me at a very early age. My parents taught me that hard work pays off, and entrepreneurship allows me unlimited opportunities.” After her high school graduation in 1986, she attended Northeast Louisiana University as a business major with a minor in English. Next, she moved to North Carolina. She married and gave birth to her only child, Robert Jenkins, II. She said, “As a military spouse, I held part-time jobs. I wanted to be home to raise my son-given the constant moving involved with the military lifestyle.”

In 1998, Roanita moved back to Monroe. She began working for a local insurance company, Vantage Health Plan. She said, “There were few positions available at the time; so, I took an entry level position to get into the company and learn more about the business.” Next week, find out what led Roanita to eventually leave her job and start her own agency. If you have an individual or group insurance need, please contact Roanita Jenkins. Her Website is I appreciate Roanita Jenkins for accepting my invitation to be “Entrepreneur of the Month” for July 2013.

What do you think about the daughter of an innovator/entrepreneur becoming an entrepreneur? Please comment.

Get Fit Now!

Get up, get over it, and get through it! This is the mantra that I tell myself every day! See. I am like the average person. I know that exercise is good for me, but it is not something that I would normally choose to do. Like the average person, I also have several pieces of exercise equipment available. However, they are often used for decoration or stuffed in a corner! I also felt good and thought I looked good; so, I had less motivation to exercise.

Furthermore, I thought I was doing great because I don’t normally eat fried foods. My weakness was sweets, but I have been denying myself lately. Why? My tolerance for pain has decreased, while pains have increased! I have been eating healthier, but that could only do so much for my body. After six months, I realized that I must combine healthy eating with more rigorous exercise! Exercise, even for just 30 minutes each day, has numerous physical and emotional benefits.


The best advice I can give is to have workout partners or someone who encourages you. Sometimes, that mantra is not enough! If I am tired or weather is bad, I would not go. Having someone to encourage you is beneficial. Do you want to get fit? You can improve your health without spending a lot of money! Here are some great recommendations that will help you get in better shape (physically and financially) for the remainder of 2013:

  1. Utilize any exercise equipment that you have at home. If not, sell the equipment because you are “eating money.”

  2. Go to your local university’s activity center for the use of its facilities. The fee is normally minimal for alumni as well as community members.

  3. If you are not coordinated or easily embarrassed, order DVDs on ZUMBA. Look for the DVDS that are “money-back guarantees.”

  4. Download FREE fitness apps to your cell phone and/or iPad. My favorite one is by Virtual Active.

  5. Take water aerobics classes at the YMCA. The YMCA usually does not require long-term contracts.

  6. Try the “No Meat/No Exercise Excuses in July Challenge” sponsored by Black Women Losing Weight.

  7. If sinus/allergies are not problematic, go for a walk or ride your bike.

Getting physically fit now will help __________. Please comment.

Money Personality Test: What Your Spending Says About You


“Personality” is a hit song that was released by Lloyd Price in 1959. All of us might not have the personality that Lloyd Price sang about, but understanding personalities is serious business. Since C. Jung and I. Briggs Myers developed a Personality Test, other personality tests have been developed. According to reports, the demand for personality tests has created a multi-million dollar industry.

Personality tests are typically used to assist people in relationships, career choices, etc. Did you know that you also have a Money Personality? Many of us learned our spending habits at home, at church, or both. For those habits to change, it is likely that our families and our church leaders will participate in (or encourage us to participate in) money management training. However, you don’t have to wait to enroll in a financial literacy program.

You can take a Money Personality Test to discover what your spending says about you. Finance experts have identified eight to ten money personality types, but five of those are basic. The five basic money personality types are as follows: the Money Spender, the Money Saver, the Money Avoider, the Money Dreamer, and the Money Achiever. The money personality types vary by name, but the actions remain the same. Some people splurge or save, while others worry, etc.

I have taken the Money Personality Test, and my money personality type is the Money Saver. Knowing this has been helpful in many ways; so, I encourage you to take the Money Personality Test. Once you discover your money personality type, you will be better equipped if you enroll in a financial literacy program. If you never enroll in a financial literacy program, identifying your money personality type remains the key to solving your financial problems.

What is your money personality type? Please comment.