Busted Bailouts and Financial Freakouts...

Unless you live in some remote part of the world with absolutely no connection to current news or the modern world, then you've probably spent a little time worrying about money over the last few weeks and months. The government can't fix the problems. Wall Street is in turmoil. No one seems to have any answers. The bailouts busted, our moneys missing, and many of us are on the way to a full-fledged finanacial freakout. In light of this, I thought I'd share some links that have provided me some good information during this turbulent time of economic uncertainty.
  1. Tony Morgan posted "14 Ways To Spend Less So You Can Do More." This blog contains some great, practical advice on easy, simple ways for a family to save money.
  2. Joe Sangl gives us "Five Ways To Save Money Without Selling Anything." In fact, Joe is the author of I Was Broke. Now I'm Not and his entire blog offers solid, sound financial advice for times like these.
  3. Our Lead Pastor, Cole Phillips, posted some thoughts about Turning A Layoff Into A Payoff. He offers some fantastic advice to the many people who are facing layoffs right now.
  4. The folks over at Generation X Finance posted "20 Free Online Finance Courses" that you can take from the comfort of your home. These range from making wise investments, planning family finances, saving for retirement, and basic economics.
  5. Frugal Dad offers advice for parents and students with his article Seven Ways To Fund College Without A College Savings Fund. Take it from a guy who is still paying off stupid student loans: There is some great advice about paying for college in this article!

For me, one pretty basic and simple thing that helped my finances was the concept of first giving to my local church through tithing, next giving to my future through saving, and then living on the rest. What about you? Any financial wisdom for these crazy times? Any links with stuff that is just too good not to pass on? Feel free to share and comment away.


The Weekend Update...

This past weekend can be summed up in one word: Basketball. I spent Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of this past weekend at the Texas U.I.L. Boys Basketball State Tournament. Me, my dad, and 2 of our cousins all had seats together for the entire weekend. My brother and some other cousins who are coaches also spent the weekend there. We had a blast together. It was great to see my old high school basketball coach, some old friends, and to get to hang out with my family doing what we love to do - watch basketball. Over those three days we spent over 35 hours in the gym of the Frank Erwin Center at the University of Texas watching 18 semi-final and final games of the state championship tournament. I'm not sure exactly what all the details of heaven will include, but this past weekend was at least a minor taste of "heaven on earth." Good basketball. Great people. Good times.


And The Name Is (Drumroll)...

It's been far too long since I last posted some thoughts on this blog. I could say it's been crazy, because it has. I could say it's been busy, because it has. I could say I've been traveling and off my normal schedule, because I have...but who isn't crazy and busy and off of their normal schedules these days. So I'll say to all my avid readers (mom) that I'm trying to get my blogging groove back.

But now for the real reason of this post: Johanna and I have FINALLY picked a name for our son. Actually, I have finally picked a name. We had narrowed it down to two names for months and Jo was cool with either one. I just couldn't decide. Naming a child is a BIG DEAL in my mind. I want to get this right. So I see-sawed back and forth. I prayed about it...a lot. I did all the name tests: I did the "banana fanna fo fanna" test. I checked to make sure Jo hadn't dated anyone with that name. I made sure it didn't rhyme with any vulgar language or form an acronym with the initials that was vulgar. I even checked it out with my mom, whose an elementary secretary, to see if she had any hellions by the name.

After all the fretting and praying and testing, it boiled down to this: honor. A name ought to be a thing that brings honor. My dad always told us growing up to remember whose name we carried. My hero and best friend in life is my Papa. He's my superman. He's who I've looked up to my entire life. His middle name is Russell and so to honor him, my son's middle name will be Russell also. A name ought to be a thing that honors.

So here it is: On or around April 20th (if the doctor is guessing right) Johanna and I will welcome to the world our son, Hayden Russell Burleson. We both have always liked the name Hayden since we first heard it. I only know one guy with that as part of his name and he happens to be a pretty solid kid himself that loves the Lord. And the middle name is a name of honor.

So you came here just to read about the name and you got my whole thought process behind it. Maybe I should blog more regularly and I won't save up such long thoughts for one post. Let me leave you with this advice that's helped me a lot in my life: Remember whose name you carry. It might have been given to you as a show of honor.