Interview: ‘Lego Movie 2: The Second Part’ Director Mike Mitchell

Interview: 'Lego Movie 2: The Second Part' Director Mike Mitchell

In 2014, writer-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller gifted us The Lego Movie, a super funny, irreverent and brilliantly-constructed animated film about the power of imagination, and how important it is to embrace and nurture one's creative side no matter how young or how old you are. That film's wild success lead to multiple spin-offs, including The Lego Batman Movie and The Lego Ninjago Movie, but now Lord and Miller have returned to where it all…

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China’s Li Ning Polishes Fashion Credentials With a Second Designer Collaboration

LONDON — Li Ning, China’s leading sports apparel-maker, is collaborating on a collection with up-and-coming designer Chen Peng that will debut at New York Fashion Week, part of a larger strategy aimed at giving the mass brand a more elevated, edgy appeal.
This is the second fashion collaboration this year for the athleticwear giant that was founded by the Olympic medalist of the same name. It was less than a month ago that Li Ning showcased its first fashion collaboration with Chinese men’s brand Pronounce during London Fashion Week Men’s.
For Li Ning, fashion associations mean business. Ever since the brand first presented its fashion collection in New York last January, it has met with a positive market response. Sales were up 17 percent in the first half of 2018.
The company’s market capitalization is at seven-year high and 67 percent larger than a year ago. The share price was 10.26 Hong Kong dollars, or $ 1.31, before the Hong Kong Stock Exchange closed for Chinese New Year on Feb. 4.
Feng Ye, general manager of Li Ning’s e-commerce unit, said the latest fashion collaboration falls under the newly launched division Counterflow, which focuses on streetwear and Chinese pop culture. “It has a more premium price

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Ning Hao’s ‘Crazy Alien’ Passes $100 Million on Second Day of Release in China

Popular Chinese director Ning Hao has seen his comedy fantasy film “Crazy Alien” gross more than $ 100 million at the mainland China box office after just two days on release during the Chinese New Year holiday period. It’s the highest two-day total for any film in the Middle Kingdom so far this year. The milestone […]

Variety

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Democrats Say Possible Howard Schultz Presidential Bid Could Help Trump Win Second Term

A number of top Democrats say President Donald Trump could win a second term if former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz runs for president.

Schultz said he is considering a bid for the 2020 presidential election as an independent during an interview that airs during this Sunday’s 60 minutes.

Democrat Juli?n Castro, who was the Obama administration’s secretary of Housing and Urban Development and recently announced his own bid for the race, spoke out against a possible Schultz run during an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper.

“I have a concern that if he did run, that essentially, it would provide Donald Trump with his best hope of getting re-elected,” Castro said on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday.

Schultz, a Democrat himself, sees his possible run as a way to break from party-oriented politics, according to The Atlantic. He has already spent the past year hiring consultants, The Atlantic reports.

“We’re living at a most-fragile time,” Schultz told CBS’s Scott Pelley. “Not only the fact that this president is not qualified to be the president, but the fact that both parties are consistently not doing what’s necessary on behalf of the American people and are engaged, every single day, in revenge politics.”

Although 57% of American voters now disapprove of Trump’s job, Castro added that the President’s support is about 42% no matter which Democrat ultimately runs against him. If an independent party were to appeal to enough undecided voters, Trump could win the 2020 race.

Other Democrats that have spoken out against the prospect include former Obama senior adviser David Axelrod, Sen. Brian Schatz of Hawaii, and even the Democratic Party of Washington State, the HuffPost reports.

“I would suggest to Mr. Schultz to truly think about the negative impact that that might make,” Castro said.

Fortune

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‘The Lego Movie: The Second Part’ Clip, Plus: An Exclusive Chat with Writers Phil Lord and Chris Miller

'The Lego Movie: The Second Part' Clip, Plus: An Exclusive Chat with Writers Phil Lord and Chris Miller

In 2014, writer-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller gifted us The Lego Movie, a super funny, irreverent and brilliantly-constructed animated film about the power of imagination, and how important it is to embrace and nurture one's creative side no matter how young or how old you are. That film's wild success lead to multiple spin-offs, including The Lego Batman Movie and The Lego Ninjago Movie, but now Lord and Miller have returned to where it all began with The Lego Movie: The…

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Second Baby Checklist: What to Reuse and What to Buy

While becoming a parent is one of the best things that ever happened to me, it was something that I never knew I wanted. I wasn’t one of those kids who dreamed of being a mommy. In fact, I didn’t particularly like children.

But that changed when I was faced with a positive pregnancy test. My daughter Rose was born in April 2015, and while I found it hard to adjust to life as a parent, I knew that my life was more complete with her in it.

Then, in 2017, my husband Ben and I decided to try for a second baby. This time we knew what to expect. We’d saved all Rose’s baby things, so we knew we wouldn’t need to stock up on as many essential items. However, I found out that didn’t mean we wouldn’t need to spend any money on baby items.

Both before and after our son Liam was born in August 2018, we stocked up on some essentials we knew from experience we would need — and a few we hadn’t anticipated. Here’s our second baby checklist, and what some of my second-time (and third-time and fourth-time) mom friends, needed.

Yes, the Double Stroller Is Worth It

A girl sit in a double stroller attached to a bike.

As a working mom, I didn’t get to use my BOB jogging stroller as often as I would have liked with Rose. But when I did use it, I loved taking her out for walks and runs, and she enjoyed being outside.

I went back and forth on buying a double jogging stroller when I was pregnant with Liam. I wasn’t sure how much I would use it now that Rose is too independent to ride in the stroller very often.

But some of my mom friends with kids closer in age said that they couldn’t live without their double strollers. My friend Naomi Sohaba got great use out of hers. “A decent double [stroller made] it easier to get out and about, because that’s easier than staying at home with two littles,” she told me.

Rather than splurging on a new double BOB, Ben and I bought a secondhand double stroller from some friends. It can also be used as a bike trailer, so we’ll get extra use out of it that we wouldn’t have gotten with the BOB. While Rose is reluctant to ride in a single stroller, she’s happy to hang out in the double to go for bike rides.

You May Need Different Bottles

Baby bottles.

I kept the bottles from when Rose was a baby, but as any parent will tell you, there was no guarantee Liam would like the same types of bottles. Regardless, I stocked up on new nipples for the bottles I had so I would be prepared.

Second-time mom Sara Frank found out how picky babies can be when it comes to bottles. “Owen wouldn’t use the same bottles as Amelia, so we had to buy new ones,” she told me.  

Sadly, Liam wasn’t a fan of Rose’s bottles. We bought a different brand and he gave them the thumbs-up (though not literally).

Invest in a Better Diaper Bag

The main thing I looked for in a diaper bag for Rose was style. I wanted something Ben would be happy carrying around, so I went with a cross-body bag called a Diaper Dude. I soon discovered that the cross-body style was impractical and uncomfortable, so we opted for a backpack instead.

But when Liam was born and I dragged our old diaper bag out of the basement, I discovered that mice had been munching on some leftover snacks in the bag and left behind their calling cards (i.e., their poop). I threw the bag out and bought a new one, sticking to the backpack style.

As a mom of three, Kathryn Dowell splurged on a diaper bag the second time around. “I think mostly I upgraded to what I actually wanted [with my second baby],” she said. “[With] the first, I was guessing and going off other people’s experience. After that, I knew my parenting style and was willing to buy nicer versions of what I knew I needed, [like a better] diaper bag.”

Most of the moms I asked agreed. They either needed bigger diaper bags for two children close in age, or better versions of the ones they used the first time around.

Baby Carrier

A man with a baby carrier hikes up a hilly trail.

A baby carrier is one of the biggest essentials for any parent, in my opinion. A good carrier allows you to hold a needy baby while leaving your hands free to grocery shop, make dinner or do chores. With a second baby, I’ve found that a carrier becomes even more essential, as it allows you to play with your other child while holding the baby.

With baby number one, most parents don’t know the wide range of baby carriers out there and will settle for what’s available at their local box store.

With Rose, I registered for a Moby Wrap and called it a day. But as I got more involved with babywearing, I realized how many options were available and upgraded to a soft-structured carrier. I used the carrier until Rose was about two and a half and refused to be carried anymore.

With Liam, I sold my pink LILLE baby carrier and opted for a black and white one instead. I also purchased a quality ring sling to keep in the car for grocery shopping and other quick trips.

Don’t Rely on Hand-Me-Downs

If you have two children of the same gender, you might be able to get away with reusing the same clothing — unless they were born in different seasons.

My friend Halie Best’s two girls are 20 months apart, so she had to buy winter and spring clothes for her second baby rather than reusing her first daughter’s summer clothes. She also purchased another set of swaddle blankets for her second daughter.

Although I had saved all Rose’s baby clothes, there weren’t many I could use for Liam. I bought some clothes for him and received others as gifts or hand-me-downs, for which I was extremely grateful.

“Fortunately, people gave us boy clothes,” said Frank, who has a three-year-old daughter and a one-year-old son. If you have friends who have babies, ask if they have any clothes they would be willing to give (or even lend) you to save money.

Look Into Subscriptions and Memberships

Diapers and othert baby supplies sit on a table

Rather than having to go to the store every few days for baby items, Amanda Margraf signed up for an Amazon Prime Pantry subscription, which offers $ 6 off orders containing five qualifying items. Amazon currently offers existing Prime members a 30-day free trial of Prime Pantry, and it’s $ 4.99 per month after that to subscribe.

Margraf’s essential items included sanitizing wipes, Diaper Genie refills, baby wipes and diaper cream. Now that her babies are older, she still uses the subscription for household items like toilet paper.

You can also sign up for subscriptions for diapers and wipes through The Honest Company and other similar websites. In addition to saving you money, a subscription service means you don’t have to remember to buy these items from the store, as they are delivered directly to your door.

Ben and I bought a Costco membership when Rose was a baby, which paid for itself in formula purchases alone. We still have our membership, and luckily, Liam tolerates the Kirkland brand of formula, so we are able to save in the same way we did when Rose was little. If you use disposable diapers, those savings only increase, as you can buy in bulk to save money.

Whether you’re expecting your second, third, fourth or fifth baby, there are always items to add to the baby checklist, even if you kept everything from your other kids. But stick to the essentials and your new addition doesn’t have to mean breaking the bank.

Catherine Hiles is a proud mother of two adorable kids. She freelances in her spare time, in addition to reading, running and cooking food containing hidden vegetables.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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Naomi Osaka Wins Australian Open and Second Grand Slam Title After Beating Petra Kvitová

(MELBOURNE, Australia) — So close to victory, Naomi Osaka suddenly was letting the Australian Open final slip away. Three championship points? Gone. A sizable lead? Soon all gone, too.

She was playing poorly. She yelled at herself. Slammed a ball. Tugged at her visor’s pink brim. Trudged to the locker room between sets with a towel draped over her head.

And then, after returning to the court, Osaka turned it all around just as quickly as she had dropped 23 of 27 points. Refocusing and reasserting herself, Osaka edged Petra Kvitova 7-6 (2), 5-7, 6-4 on Saturday night to win the Australian Open for a second consecutive Grand Slam title.

“I felt like I didn’t want to have any regrets,” Osaka said. “I think if I didn’t regroup after the second set, then I would have looked back on this match and probably cried or something.”

On top of that, Osaka will rise to No. 1 in the rankings.

“Amazing achievement,” two-time Wimbledon champion Kvitova said. “Definitely she is a great one. We’ll see what the future will bring.”

Osaka added the Australian Open trophy to the one she collected in a U.S. Open final last September that forever will be remembered for the way runner-up Serena Williams was docked a game after arguing with the chair umpire.

Unlike that day, there was no jeering from the confused crowd. No controversy. No chaos. No sharing the spotlight.

Clearly marking herself as tennis’ bright new star, Osaka is the first woman to win two major championships in a row since Williams picked up four straight in 2014-15.

Almost didn’t happen.

Osaka held three match points in the second set at 5-3, love-40 as Kvitova served. But Osaka couldn’t close it out. Instead, she completely lost her way.

That allowed Kvitova to come back and make a match of it, reeling off five games in a row to take the second set and go up 1-0 in the third.

At that point, Kvitova would say later, she figured it was going to keep going her way.

“In the end,” she said, “it wasn’t.”

After Kvitova double-faulted to offer up a break point at 1-all, Osaka converted it with a cross-court backhand winner. There was still more work to be done, of course, and some additional drama when it began raining at the changeover right before Osaka tried to serve for the match at 5-4 in the third set.

This time, Osaka would not falter. She would not let this lead disappear.

“I knew that Petra couldn’t keep it up for that long if Naomi could just manage those emotions,” said Osaka’s coach, Sascha Bajin, “and she did that beautifully.”

Osaka was born in Japan — her mother is Japanese, her father is Haitian — and she moved to New York at age 3. Now she’s based in Florida and has dual citizenship. Osaka already was the first player representing Japan — female or male — to win a Grand Slam singles title. Now she also is the first to top the WTA or ATP rankings.

At 21, Osaka is the youngest No. 1 in nearly a decade; Caroline Wozniacki was 20 when she first ascended to that spot in 2010.

And to think, a year ago, Osaka was ranked 72nd.

What a climb. What a quick climb.

Kvitova was playing in her first Grand Slam final since winning Wimbledon in 2014 — and the first since she was stabbed in the hand by an intruder at her home in the Czech Republic a little more than two years ago.

Kvitova needed surgery, missed the first 4½ months of the 2017 season, including the Australian Open, and couldn’t be sure she’d ever get back to the top of tennis.

“You’ve been through so much,” Osaka told Kvitova during the trophy ceremony. “I’m really honored to have played you in the final of a Grand Slam.”

On a somewhat cloudy, rather comfortable evening, with only a slight breeze and the temperature around 75 degrees (25 Celsius), both women hit the ball as hard as can be. Exchanges were mostly at the baseline and filled with flat, powerful groundstrokes that barely cleared the net and made retrieving and replying as much about reflexes as anything.

Here’s one measure of how even it was: Each finished with 33 winners.

Points were swift and blunt; of 86 in the first set, only four lasted nine strokes or more. There was plenty of strong serving, clean hitting and good movement.

It was Osaka who was the first to get ahead, tearing through the tiebreaker by grabbing five points in a row — four via winners — to go up 5-1. When Kvitova sailed a backhand wide moments later, ceding a set for the first time all tournament, Osaka pumped her fist and screamed, “Come on!”

How pivotal was that moment? Kvitova had won her last 22 Grand Slam matches after winning the first set. Osaka, meanwhile, entered the day having won 59 matches anywhere after going up by a set.

When Osaka broke to lead 3-2 in the second set, and then got to 5-3, the outcome seemed to be a foregone conclusion. Turned out, that wasn’t the case. Not at all.

All that really matters, of course, is that Osaka righted herself in time to win.

“It didn’t really take that long,” she said. “I didn’t have a choice.”

Sports – TIME

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Plastic finds second life in Portuguese street artist’s work

A lemur made of damaged car bumpers and bin lids. An owl made from plastic junk. Colorful animals have popped up in Paris as part of a new exhibition by Portuguese street artist Bordalo II, who aims to highlight the effect of waste on the environment.


Reuters: Arts

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Wendy Williams Extends Her Hiatus for the SECOND TIME, Pushes Show Return Back ANOTHER Week Amid Health Struggles and Husband’s Cheating Scandal

NEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 06: Wendy Williams visits SiriusXM Studios on September 6, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Santiago Felipe/Getty Images)

Wendy Williams is taking yet another week off amid months of health struggles and her husband’s alleged cheating scandal.

‘The Wendy Williams Show’ was initially supposed to return from hiatus on January 7th, but after announcing the start date Wendy’s team canceled it and said she’d return to work on January 14th.

Now, just days before the show was rescheduled to start, Wendy Show producers confirm that she won’t be returning on the 14th and will instead return one week later — on January 21st.

Until then, they will bring on a panel of “Hot Talkers” to replace Wendy until she comes back.

“As she has for the past 10 years, Wendy delivers an incomparable live talk show day in and day out and we want to give her the best opportunity to heal and recover,” Debmar-Mercury co-presidents Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein said. “Wendy has our complete and unwavering support and we look forward to her return to the iconic purple chair.”

Producers cite her recent shoulder injury as reason for her delay, but as we’ve said Wendy’s friends are said to be concerned for her wellbeing and believe she might be self-medicating. 

Sidebar: You may have heard, but did you know Wendy sent us a cease and desist letter for talking about her alleged personal struggles?

The post Wendy Williams Extends Her Hiatus for the SECOND TIME, Pushes Show Return Back ANOTHER Week Amid Health Struggles and Husband’s Cheating Scandal appeared first on lovebscott – celebrity news.

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A French blogger brought down by his own tweets wants a second chance

At just 24, Mehdi Meklat was a star blogger for the French newspaper Libération, a frequent guest on national radio programs and the co-author of a critically acclaimed novel. Then journalists uncovered anti-Semitic and homophobic tweets, and his meteoric rise was overshadowed by a staggering fall.
World

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Aquaman Swims Into Weekend Box Office Win. Mary Poppins Returns Comes in Second

(LOS ANGELES) — “Aquaman” is still leading the pack at the box office, but other films like “Mary Poppins Returns” and “The Mule” are enjoying post-Christmas bumps too.

Warner Bros. on Sunday says “Aquaman” has added an estimated $ 51.6 million in North American ticket sales over the weekend to take first place again. Down just 24 percent from its domestic debut, the DC Comics pic has grossed nearly $ 748.8 million worldwide.

Up 19 percent, “Mary Poppins Returns” took second place with $ 28 million, while “Bumblebee” settled in third with $ 20.5 million.

“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” got fourth with $ 18.3 million. And “The Mule,” up 24 percent, took fifth with $ 11.8 million.

The Dick Cheney movie “Vice” grossed $ 7.8 million from the weekend and $ 17.7 million since its Christmas opening.


Entertainment – TIME

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Usher Moves To Finalize Second Divorce

They parted ways last year, but it’s only now that Usher Raymond and Grace Miguel have formally moved forward  to dissolve their 3 year marriage.

Specifically, according to court records,  Usher, 40, made the filing on Friday in a Georgia court. According The Blast, the entertainer is employing the same attorney he used for his previous custody fight with ex-wife, Tameka Foster.

Court documents point to  December 24, 2017 as the couple’s date of separation. They also say they reached a confidential settlement agreement … so it’s all finished and just waiting on a judge to sign off.

“After much thought and consideration we have mutually decided to separate as a couple.”

The statement continued …

“We remain deeply connected, loving friends who will continue supporting each other through the next phases of our lives. The enormous amount of love and respect that we have for each other will only increase as we move forward.”

Usher and Grace Miguel, 49,  originally met while working in the music industry, and she also served as his manager. The marriage produced no children.

In related news, a Philadelphia songwriter who claims he was cut out of profits and credit for his work on Usher’s “Bad Girl” has been awarded more than $ 44 million in damages in a lawsuit against the song’s other co-writers.

via Billboard:

A jury  awarded the sum to Daniel Marino. His former co-writer William Guice was ordered to pay $ 6.75 million in compensatory damages, and $ 20.25 million in punitive damages.

Also last week Destro Music Productions, owned by co-defendant Dante Barton, agreed to pay Marino $ 17.35 million. That brings his total award to $ 44.35 million.

The lawsuit stemmed from Marino’s work on a song called “Club Girl.” Marino says he created most of the song, including its guitar hook, tempo and chord progression.

The song was recorded by Usher in 2004 and renamed “Bad Girl.” And in case you’re wondering, Usher wasn’t named in the suit.

 


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‘Very horny’ Tom Ford manager accused in second lawsuit

The libidinous Tom Ford manager who boasted to a seamstress that vibrators were her favorite accessories, according to a lawsuit, is now being accused by another tailor of saying, “I need sex everyday. I can’t live without it.” The high-fashion house is facing a second suit by two tailors, including one who’s done fittings for…
Fashion News, Photos, and Video | New York Post

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Watch Exclusive ‘Second Act’ Clip: Maya Speaks Mandarin

Watch Exclusive 'Second Act' Clip: Maya Speaks Mandarin

Given an amazing opportunity to reinvent her life, Maya (Jennifer Lopez) grabs it with both hands in Second Act. Sometimes, however, her reach exceeds her grasp, as showcased in our exclusive clip from the comedy.

Out to dinner with an important client of the big-box retail store where she works and wanting to impress him in his native tongue, Maya has enlisted the linguistic assistance of a friend. As the clip reveals, Maya must use her street smarts to save the conversation when it starts…

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Pay off Credit Card Debt Without Selling Jewelry or Getting a Second Job

If they made a movie about paying off your credit cards, it would be called “Mission: Impossible.”

Seriously, paying down your credit card debts is a Herculean task. It can feel like you’re trying to climb a mountain that’s made out of quicksand.

You reach a point where you’re paying so much interest, you can’t pay down the principal.  

It’s tempting to take drastic measures. Sell off all your jewelry. Take a second job and say goodbye to your free time. You don’t have to do that. Don’t despair.

We’ve Got Ideas You Haven’t Thought of

Before you drive to the pawn shop or check the job listings, we’ve got eight tips for how to pay off your credit cards.

1. Let This Company Cut Your Interest Rates

When you think about how much debt you have, you might feel a little anxious.

That’s where a company like Fiona can be helpful. It can help you find personalized lending options to refinance or consolidate your debt to potentially save thousands dollars in interest.

Fiona will show you all the lenders willing to help you pay off your credit cards and eliminate the headache of paying bills by allowing you to make one payment each month.

You can borrow up to $ 100,000 (no collateral needed) and compare interest rates, which start at 4.99%. The idea is to secure a loan at a lower interest rate, potentially helping you save thousands. Repayment plans range from 24 to 84 months.

Take, for example, Katherine, who faced $ 12,000 in credit-card debt. Holding her back? The 15.24% interest rate. By refinancing with a 5%-interest, seven-year personal loan, she saved $ 12,000 in interest.

If she’d kept on the same road, she would have paid something like $ 14,000 in interest alone over 25 years. Yikes.

So even if you’re simply curious about what’s out there, know that checking rates on Fiona won’t hurt your credit score — and can probably save you in interest.

2. Get a Strategic View of Your Debt

One of the toughest parts about paying down debt is knowing where to begin.

To get yourself out of this hole, first you have to know what you’re dealing with.

Your credit report will give you this information. You can get a free copy of it once every 12 months from each of the three major credit reporting bureaus — but they can be tough to decipher.

If you want to keep a closer eye on your credit, get your credit score and “credit report card” for free from Credit Sesame. This website breaks down exactly what’s on your credit report in layman’s terms, how it affects your score and what you should do about it.

It offers personalized tips for how to deal with your debts. Folks who’ve used it tell us it’s a lifesaver.

3. Find out If You’re Paying Too Much for Car Insurance

Woman posing in front of a mural of a car.

You’re probably overpaying for car insurance and wasting money you could use to pay down debt.

Have you shopped around lately? Have you compared rates from the 20 largest auto insurers that do business in your area? That sounds kind of difficult and time-consuming, doesn’t it?

Fortunately, a service called Gabi will do it for you, and you don’t even have to fill out any forms. Simply link your insurance account and provide your driver’s license number, and Gabi will go to work.

Once you link your insurance account to Gabi, it will:

  • Scan your existing insurance plan.
  • Analyze what coverage you have.
  • Compare the major insurers’ rates for that same coverage.
  • Help you switch on the spot if it finds you a better rate.

Gabi says it finds an average savings of $ 720 per year for its customers.

It is a true apples-to-apples comparison at the same coverage levels and deductibles you currently have. Once you sign up, you never have to shop again. Gabi’s software has your policy on file and keeps on monitoring for savings as your life changes.

4. Find Some Hidden Cash

Before you start hashing out a plan to tackle your debt, it might make you feel better to find areas in your life where you can save. Then you can funnel that money directly toward those outstanding balances.

For consistent savings, download TrueBill, an app that’ll negotiate your bills, cancel unwanted subscriptions and refund your bank fees. On average, Truebill says it saves customers $ 700 a year.

You can also try digging up some extra cash with Paribus — a tool that gets you money back for your online purchases. It’s free to sign up, and once you do, it will scan your email for any receipts. If it discovers you’ve purchased something from one of its monitored retailers, it will track the item’s price and help you get a refund when there’s a price drop.

One of our favorite ways to save on everything is with Ebates, a cash-back site that rewards you nearly every time you buy something online. For example, Ebates gives you 10% cash-back on online purchases at Walmart. Plus, you’ll get a free $ 10 gift card to Walmart for giving the site a try.

Disclosure: Paribus compensates us when you sign up using the links we provide.

5. Earn Rewards When You Repay Your Debt on Time

Woman on laptop.

When you were a kid, your mom probably gave you an allowance for washing the dishes and sweeping the floor. Now all you get for doing that is a kitchen that’s clean for, like, 15 minutes.

Now that you’re a grown-up, you no longer get rewarded for just doing the things that are expected of you — like, for instance, paying bills on time.

Not until now, anyway. MoneyLion, a free app for managing your personal finances, will reward you for things like paying your bills and monitoring your credit — even just setting up an account in the app.

Much like that childhood allowance, it’s basically bribing you to be good.

You’ll earn points in the app’s rewards program, and you can redeem them for gift cards to more than 15,000 retailers, including places like Walmart, Applebee’s and Amazon.

If you want to take it a step further and work on paying down debts, for example, MoneyLion can help with a loan to consolidate your debt and potentially reduce your interest rates. And it’ll reward you for that, too!

6. Start Saving Without Trying

Saving money is tough. So what if you could do it in a way where you wouldn’t even notice?

Digit makes that possible.

This innovative app automates saving for you. Simply link it to your checking account, and its algorithms will determine small (and safe!) amounts of money to withdraw into a separate, FDIC-insured savings account.

Bonus: Penny Hoarders will get an extra $ 5 just for signing up! Additionally, savers will receive a 1% bonus every three months.

Digit is free to use for the first 30 days, then it’s $ 2.99 per month afterward.

7. Make Extra Money While You Watch TV

For those times you choose the frugal route and stay in for the night, why not cash in on your free time? Survey sites aren’t the fastest way to earn money, but they’re a great way to build a little savings while you veg out.

Here are some of our favorites:

  • Swagbucks is definitely a reader favorite, probably because of the wide variety of ways to make money beyond taking surveys. Plus, you get a $ 5 bonus when earn 2,500 SB within your first 60 days.
  • InboxDollars lets you actually get paid to watch TV online. The site hosts a ton of stuff to watch, including cooking, entertainment, news and health shows. The shows are sponsored by brands that need to get them in front of as many eyeballs as possible. Every time you watch one, InboxDollars will credit your account with a little bit of cash.
  • MyPoints: This platform lets you earn gift cards for taking polls, answering surveys and other things you do online — a great way to cash in on long lines or an endless commute. You’ll earn a $ 5 bonus when you complete your first five surveys.

8. Negotiate Your Bills

Remember what your grandma used to say when you wanted a cookie? “Ask nicely!”

It turns out that’s amazing life advice when it comes to tackling your debt, as well.

Sometimes you can lower your bills, especially crippling medical bills, just by asking to have them reduced. Let your provider know a good reason why you can’t pay what it’s asking. You might get a little relief.

Also keep an eye on late fees and other sneaky charges that are added on to your bill. Those are easy for your debtors to remove if they choose.

It doesn’t hurt to ask, right?

Mike Brassfield is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Why Your Credit Cards May Deserve A Second Chance

(AP Photo)

While paying off $ 1,700 in credit card debt in 2014, Jamie Griffin cut up his card. To tackle the remaining $ 90,000 in student loans he and his wife carried, he read personal finance experts’ tips and turned to cash and a spreadsheet to budget. Now that most of their debt is paid off, he’s giving credit cards a cautious second chance.

Griffin has come to see credit cards as a way that he and his wife, Jenna, who are both teachers, can potentially defray the costs of travel. Instead of immediately applying for a travel credit card, though, the 31-year-old from Duluth, Minnesota, let his wife’s longtime rewards credit card lead the way as they transitioned from using cash to credit for most purchases.

“We wanted to practice to make sure we could actually do it rather than reverting back to our old spending habits of just swiping a card because we could,” Jamie Griffin says. “We haven’t had to pay any interest. We haven’t had any late payments.”

If you, too, have developed new spending habits — and potentially higher credit scores — since paying off debt, you might be a good fit for rewards credit cards that earn cash back for your emergency fund or miles for a vacation. Here are factors to consider.

REWARDS CAN HELP WITH EXPENSES

Rewards credit cards generally require a credit score of 690 or higher. They can earn cash back, points or airline miles in specific categories or on everyday spending. Rewards rates vary by card and some also offer sign-up bonuses with introductory zero percent interest rates for new cardholders.

Depending on the card, rewards can be redeemed for things like cash, statement credit, travel, gift cards or merchandise — all of which can help with household expenses, as long as you pay credit card bills in full every month to avoid interest charges.

Since early 2017, the Griffins have collected 38,000 points — that’s over $ 300 in cash back. They redeemed 20,000 points (about $ 200) into their bank account earlier this summer.

YOUR CREDIT MAY DEPEND ON IT

Paying off debt is a worthy goal. But if you later stop using a credit card, it can hurt your credit scores. That’s because credit utilization and length of credit history are key factors in the calculation of those scores, according to FICO.

Say you were to close an older high-limit credit card after paying it off — or that you use the card so infrequently that the issuer ends up closing the account for you. Shutting down the account would not only decrease your amount of total available credit; you would also lose the card’s account history.

Another factor in your credit scores is credit mix — the combination of different kinds of credit accounts. A healthy credit mix might include a mortgage or car loans, for example, and also credit cards.

“If you have a healthy mix of credit, and you’re using them wisely, and you have a good history, that should reflect in your credit score,” says Jeffrey Arevalo, financial wellness expert at GreenPath, a credit counseling agency.

Of course, without piles of cash on hand, you’ll need good credit if you want to qualify for a home or car loan at the lowest interest rates. Keeping a credit card active and using it responsibly is an easy way to maintain good credit.

But if the temptation to overspend is too great, closing a credit card account may be the way to go, Arevalo says.

CREDIT CARDS CAN HELP YOU PLAN

Before moving most of their expenses to credit, Jenna Griffin asked the issuer about benefits for longtime customers. The couple secured a six-month safety net with a zero percent interest rate that they didn’t have to use.

Recently, the couple was approved for a credit card that earns miles to help them save money on travel expenses. Jamie Griffin continues tracking all of their expenses on his spreadsheet.

If you’re ready to give credit cards a second chance, here’s how to use a rewards credit card and maintain good credit:

– Pay your bill in full and on time every month.

– Don’t stray from your budget just to earn credit card rewards.

– Keep charges below 30% of your available credit.

– Use your credit card as a budgeting tool to track your spending and review your purchases.

– Keep your no-annual-fee accounts open and active to avoid hurting your credit score.

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