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fawcettl's Blog

Career Transition Training

Registration is still open for the Michigan Shifting Gears Fall 2011, a career transition development program designed for business professionals looking to shift their skills for new job opportunities. This program is being offered through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and runs from September 20 through December 23. Interested professionals are required to participate in one free informational webinar. Visit the Michigan Shifting Gears website for more information.

QR Codes

By now, you have probably noticed these funny looking boxes on everything from cereal to restaurant menus. You have also probably wondered what the heck they are and if they matter to you. Well, these black and white squares are actually called QR codes, a type of 2D barcode meant to be read by smartphones. Originally created by a Toyota subsidiary in Japan to track automotive parts, these black and white boxes are now being used to pass along text, web addresses and all sorts of information to smartphones. Companies are using these codes to direct customers to everything from sweepstakes entry forms to job applications. Get scanning today with one of the many smartphone apps that enable you to scan and read QR codes — like NeoReader & BeeTagg Reader (just to name a few).

Wall Street Gone Wild

Managing financial investments can be daunting even in the best of times, and volatile markets can terrify even the most savy of investors. Wall Street has been on a wild ride these last few days and you probably have questions about how to best protect your money. Here is a list of books designed to help you protect your investments in times of economic uncertainty:

Storm proof your money: weather any economy, rebuild your portfolio, protect your future by Brett Arends

Crash proof 2.0: how to profit from the economic collapse by Peter D. Schiff with John Downes

Attention Inventors and Do It Yourself Auto Enthusiasts

Ford Motor Company TechShop, a membership based workshop that provides members affordable access to industrial tools & equipment, have announced a collaborative effort in the city of Detroit called TechShop Detroit. The Detroit studio will feature over $1 million in high-tech equipment and include everything from top-quality prototyping tools and industrial-grade sewing and textile equipment to laser cutting, welding and machine shop-type gear. As part of the arrangment Ford will incorporate a first-of-its-kind "Innovation Exchange" with the nonprofit organization AutoHarvest.

Kanzashi Flower Class

Join us Saturday July 30th at 2:00PM as CPL librarian and local artist Laura Fawcett teaches the Japanese art of kanzashi flowers. Kanzashi are beautiful folded fabric-petal flowers you can wear in your hair or as a pin. Class participants will learn basic fabric folding techniques and make a hair clip to take home. All materials will be supplied and no experience is necessary. Ages 12 and up — Registration required. Don't forget, joining us for this program would be a great way to earn the Artist Badge for Connect Your Summer!

Kanzashi Flower

Join us Saturday July 30th at 2:00PM as CPL librarian and local artist Laura Fawcett teaches the Japanese art of kanzashi flowers. Kanzashi are beautiful folded fabric-petal flowers you can wear in your hair or as a pin. Class participants will learn basic fabric folding techniques and make a hair clip to take home. All materials will be supplied and no experience is necessary. Ages 12 and up — Registration required.

Host a Virtual Garage Sale

Everyone has unwanted stuff at home, but hosting a real garage sale can be a time consuming and complex process. Did you know that many of those items you are tripping over can be sold online, on your terms and at your own pace? Join us Tuesday June 28th at 2:00PM in the Internet Lab for tips on how to host your own Virtual Garage Sale. We will discuss ways to unload your items and make a little extra cash on sites like Ebay, Etsy, and Craiglist.

Michigan Tax Amnesty In Effect Until June 30th

The State of Michigan is offering delinquent taxpayers the opportunity to pay past due state taxes and have penalty charges waived. Taxpayers who qualify would also avoid criminal prosecution by the Michigan Department of Treasury. To be eligible, all taxpayers must submit the complete amnesty application and full payment, including interest, by June 30, 2011. Visit mitaxamnesty.org for more information.

2011 Michigan Notable Books Showcase Automoble Industry

Each year, the Library of Michigan, compiles a list of "exceptional" books that showcase Michigan topics and authors. This year, two titles highlighting the triumphs and tragedies of Detroit's automobile industry have made the list.

Chrysler's turbine car: the rise and fall of Detroit's coolest creation by Steve Lehto — gives a detailed account of Chrysler's foray into the world of cars powered by jet engines.

Finance Books for Women

Personal finance books are abundant, but not all of them address the unique issues women face when trying to manage their money. These five titles offer gender specific advice for women looking to build wealth, make investments, reduce debt and balance the family budget.

The real cost of living: making the best choices for you, your life, and your money by Carmen Wong Ulrich

Women & money: owning the power to control your destiny by Suze Orman

Chicks 4 Charity offer Scholarship Opportunity

Canton's Woman’s Life Society Chapter 827, Chicks 4 Charity, is currently offering scholarships totaling $2000 for both full ($1,000) and part time ($500) college students. Applicants must reside in Canton, Plymouth, Belleville or Westland and be enrolled in a 2 or 4 year accredited Michigan college, university or trade school in the fall of 2011. Application Deadline to apply is June 13, 2011. Winner will be notified by July 18, 2011. For more information see the attached application form.

Michigan Legislature Begins Redistricting Process

The results of the 2010 Census require that Michigan's congressional districts be redrawn. This process which occurs every 10 years has already begun in the Michigan legislature. This time around, lawmakers face many challenges including the loss of one congressional seat and the dramatic population losses in the city of Detroit. The Michigan Redistricting Collaborative is a coalition of non-profits from all segments of the community, including business, labor and public interest, dedicated to making the redistricting process more transparent and open, while encouraging involvement from the public. Their website Michigan — Draw the Line has been designed to inform the public on all aspects of the redistricting process.

Geraldine Ferraro Dead at Age 75

Geraldine Ferraro, the woman who made history in 1984 when she became the first female candidate on a presidential ticket, has died after a lengthy battle with multiple myeloma. Although best known for her VP candidacy, Ferraro was also a three time congresswoman, successful lawyer, and political activist. You can read more about Ms. Ferraro in her autobiography, Ferraro, My Story.

Free Tax Services

The Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency and the Wayne County Asset Building Coalition are offering free tax preparation services for families with incomes under $48,300. Call (734) 284-6999 for a list of participating locations or to schedule an appointment.

Five Titles That Will Get You Hooked on Our DVD TV Series Collection

Watching a television series on DVD is a great way to catch a TV show you may have missed out on. Plus, you get the added convenience of being able to watch as much or as little as you want — without any commercial interruptions! Here are some recommended titles to get you started:

Deadwood — The life and times of a group of men and women who set up camp in Deadwood, South Dakota during the gold rush of 1876

Veronica Mars — Follows Veronica Mars, an apprentice private investigator, as she solves the town of Neptune's toughest mysteries