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Date: 1/26/2021
Subject: Family Matters
From: The Family Center

The Family Center eNewsletter
Vol. 2, No. 1; January 26, 2021

Family Matters shares practical tips and information for families in Grosse Pointe and Harper Woods. We hope you enjoy this resource and share it with friends!

Sesame Street

Family Fun
Let Me Tell You How to Get to Sesame Street
Your favorite furry and feathered friends have banded together to support kids during the pandemic. Visit their "Caring For Each Other" hub for games, printables, and videos including self-care and managing feelings. Check out their resources here.

The Family Center's Greatest Hits
We're busy working with our Association of Professionals to create new content for you. In the meantime, take a scroll through some oldies but goodies.
Expert advice on a wide range of topics.
On demand viewing of presentations on a variety of subjects including parenting, mental health, special needs, substance abuse, suicide, and so much more.  
Videos and articles that help your family build resilience in the midst of uncertainty.

Winter Houses

It Takes a Village    

Fun Ways to Face the Winter
COVID isolation and Michigan winter are bearing down on us. Here are some fun ways to pass the time:

Cook! Create a cookie swap or dinner exchange. Find the definitive best recipe (for banana bread, ribs, spaghetti sauce, the options are endless!) by conducting a taste-test with friends or family. Create a menu based on a place you've been or would love to visit. Ask a family member how to make a beloved recipe, make sure to write down the history of the dish along with the instructions, it could be the start of a treasured family recipe book. 

Start or join a book or movie club! Get a book kit from the library or join an existing book club. Set up a watch party on Netflix or check out free streaming from the library or the DIA. Schedule a Zoom or Facetime call with your group to discuss your thoughts. If you have young children, ask a loved one to read a book to your child over speakerphone or FaceTime.

Do a puzzle! Buy two copies of the same jigsaw puzzle (shop local) and drop off or mail one to your friends or family, then compete to see who can solve it first, texting pictures of your progress. January 29 is National Jigsaw Puzzle Day!

piggy bank

Make 2021 the Year You Get Your Finances in Order
Q: I need to get my finances in order, where do I start?
A: Financial issues are one of the leading causes of stress. Worry about debt, saving enough for retirement, paying for college, and other financial issues can take a toll on your relationships, your health, and your peace of mind. Much of this stress can be alleviated by frankly assessing your financial concerns and implementing a plan to mitigate them. Resolve in 2021 to take control of your financial future.

1. Reduce Your Debt Burden
Debt is your worst enemy and the greatest obstacle to retirement. Determine what you owe and pay off the debt with the highest interest first. Consider consolidating your debt, and always pay more than the monthly minimum payment. Mortgage interest rates are historically low; if you have not yet remortgaged do your research and see if you can get better terms. Resolve to spend less than you earn and put your credit cards on ice.

2. Spend Less
Studies have shown that most middle and upper middle class people do not consider themselves well off. The reason? People tend to spend what they make and live from paycheck to paycheck no matter their level of income. Resolve to shop with a list and resist impulse or boredom shopping; budget and save for large ticket items.

3. Save More
Reprioritizing your mindset from instant gratification to future security will literally pay dividends. Funnel your savings into an automatic transfer from your bank account to an investment or high-yield savings account. Resolve to increase your retirement savings, increase the percentage you allocate to your 401(k) or other qualified retirement plan, fully fund your IRA this year (it is not too late to fund 2020 you have until April 15, 2021), or put a percentage aside in an after-tax account from every paycheck to build your safety net and accumulate wealth.

4. Make a Financial Plan
Create a personal balance sheet. List your assets and liabilities. Reflect on your financial goals, then map out how you can increase your assets and reduce liabilities. Do you need to increase savings or work a few years longer, or are you on the right track? Fear of the unknown is more stressful than having a clear picture of your finances and a path to gaining financial security. Resolve to create a plan and work towards your goals.

Suzanne Antonelli, CFP® has been a trusted financial advisor to individuals and their families for over 30 years. Antonelli Financial Advisors work with clients to establish and prioritize goals in each stage and transition in their lives; focusing on accumulating wealth, protection from the unexpected, providing for a comfortable retirement, and legacy planning. For more information please contact or 313.290.2602.

Support Our Mission

The Family Center is 100% donor-supported non-profit organization that provides resources and preventative education to empower families to successfully navigate life's social, emotional, and physical challenges. Help us continue this important work with an end-of-year donation today. 

32 Lake Shore Drive, Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan 48236 | 313.447.1374
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