Category Archives: Motivation

Halfway there.

On October 27, 2017, I read the following article by author Bob Bly.  (Mr. Bly gives full permission to reprint his articles as long as you give him credit.)

I recommend you read the article in its entirety.  Here it is (Actually, this is only part of the article. He swore at the beginning.  A lot of students read my work.  I removed the swear word):

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Sometimes internet marketing is a pain.

You work hard on a product, launch it, and nobody is interested.

Now you have to salvage the product either by improving it or bundling it with other stuff.

Continue reading Halfway there.

What to pack

Traveling can actually be quite a hassle.  Or, it can be a forced rest.  Sometimes, sitting on a plane with nothing to do sounds nice.

Every time I travel, I am always envious of the the cool, carefree travelers with one backpack.  I am not envious when I watch the travelers who couldn’t decide what to pack… and, so they decided to bring it all.

Have you ever found yourself wondering exactly what you should bring on a trip?

Now, you no longer have to wonder.

Bookmark this page: https://www.ricksteves.com/travel-tips/packing-light/ricks-packing-list.  Next time you travel, you will be glad you did.

My family and I have used Rick Steves packing checklist for years.  Keeps us from bringing too much.  It also keeps us from forgetting important essentials.

Here is the checklist itself: https://d3dqioy2sca31t.cloudfront.net/Projects/cms/production/000/014/077/original/586156d1a1849a3cb0a2bc1b10693ba1/RickStevesPackingList.pdf

As Rick Steves says, “Remember to pack light to enjoy the sweet freedom of true mobility. Happy travels!”

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Have a happy Saturday!
Dwane

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Every Saturday, I send out a tip of the week.  I also include announcements, upcoming classes, and so on.  If you would like to hear from me every weekend, sign up for my weekly updates here:

Exit interview

A subscriber canceled this week.  She left this note:

“Thanks so much, and thanks for all your help in Latin, couldn’t have done it without you!”

– Krystal

That’s the kind of exit interview that makes me happy.

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Still on the fence?  Not sure you want to join?  To see what others are saying, check this page out:  https://dwanethomas.com/testimonials/

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Want to join a class?  Click the blue button below: 

  • Billed once per month, 36 times

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Every Saturday, I send out a tip of the week.  I also include announcements, upcoming classes, and so on.  If you would like to hear from me every weekend, sign up for my weekly updates here:

Stop panicking.

I grew up with the worldview that everything was going to become increasingly worse until finally, the last few true believers would be pulled off the planet.

After the rescue would come the apocalypse.

I now believe that is nonsense.

As Dr. Gary North says, “We are not about to enter a dark age. We are about to enter an age of greater liberty and wealth. It is time to watch Hans Rosling’s video once again. We had better watch it at least once a year.”

When I was a kid, communism was supposed to take over the world.  Instead, it collapsed.  I was on the Berlin wall during the week it came down.  A few months later, East Germany was no more.  And, in 1991, The Soviet Union closed its doors. It simply went out of business with barely a whimper.

Like it or not, the gospel of Jesus Christ is winning.  It will continue to win.  All empires will kneel.

I’m back.

I took the last three weeks off.  Well… from writing a tip of the week.  Just couldn’t find the time.

August is the busiest month of the year for me.   I spend most of my time getting ready for the upcoming courses, answering questions, registering students, and answering questions.  Lots and lots of questions.  Also, I spend a lot of time answering questions.

Then, in September, classes begin.  The craziness stops.  My site stats drop from thousands of hits a day to hundreds of hits a day.

Back to writing the “Tip of the Week”.

This one is more of a reminder, actually.

Lately, my 14-year-old daughter and I have been having conversations in German.  I did not teach her German.  To my own shame, I admit that I have not had the time.

She taught herself.  We have enrolled her in no classes.  We have never taken her to Germany.  And, there are no German foreign exchange students in our house.

So, how did she do it?

DuoLingo.

My 16-year-old daughter watches movies from time to time in French.  Same story.  She taught herself.  How?

DuoLingo.

Incidentally, neither of them are all that interested in Latin.  “I’ll show you, Dad.  I am going to teach myself a modern language!”  Rebellious teenagers.

I am teaching myself Italian and modern Greek.  I am using DuoLingo.  It’s working.

My students are used to hearing me talk about DuoLingo.

Parents aren’t.  Learning a foreign language just can’t be that simple.  There must be a course.  There must be a syllabus.   There must be a course description.  There must be high-school credit.  There must be grades.

Guess what?  Schools provide all of that.  Syllabi.  Course descriptions.  Credits.  Grades.  Schools provide it all.  Only one thing is missing.  The ability to speak the language.

I don’t speak French, so I really do not know how my 16-year-old daughter is doing in French.  But, my German-speaking daughter is doing well and she is getting better.  Conversations are becoming more and more fun.  No syllabus.  No course description.  No credits.  No grades.  Just the ability to switch into German with me when she doesn’t want other members of the family to understand.

DuoLingo is the most powerful language learning tool I have encountered in the last ten years.  It feels like a game.  It looks like you are playing on your smartphone.  It looks childish.

Don’t be fooled.

DuoLingo. is a serious language learning system.  Use it.

I even have a couple of classrooms I manage on DuoLingo.  You can join.

Greek: https://www.duolingo.com/o/pdhxqm
Italian: http://duolingo.com/o/uftpsz

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Have a Saturday, everyone!
Dwane

P. S.  There is a big music festival going on in my town (Franklin, Tennessee) this weekend.  If you are coming, please behave yourself.  Don’t trash the place.  We like it here.  And, if you are from New England, don’t honk at all of us on the street.  We just don’t do that around here.  Thanks.

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Every Saturday, I send out a tip of the week.  I also include announcements, upcoming classes, and so on.  If you would like to hear from me every weekend, sign up for my weekly updates here:

IDK

Last year, when I was grading my students’ work, I would get this response from time to time.

I don’t know.

Here is my standard reply:

IDK.  If ever you encounter questions you cannot answer, check the “Student Answers” section under the “Members” tab of my site….  -5
Other students have gone before you.  Others have also struggled.  I have held on to their answers and I have held on to my responses to their answers.
Do some research.  Check out the Members tab of my site.  Pick your course.  Look for “Student Answers”.  Compare your work to theirs.
If you are really stuck, seek help in the forums.  Interact with others.

Summary of the Millionaire Next Door

Years ago, I read the Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley.  I remember thinking… “Is this a commentary on the book of Proverbs?”

This morning, I ran across a summary of the book.

Investment writer Mark Skousen wrote this:

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According to “The Millionaire Next Door” and the sequel, “The Millionaire Mind,” wealthy American millionaires are good people. Here are the results of his survey of more than 1,000 super-millionaires (people who earn $1,000,000 a year or more):

  • They live far below their means and have little or no debt. Most pay off their credit cards every month; 40% have no home mortgage at all.
  • Millionaires are frugal — they prepare shopping lists, resole their shoes and save a lot of money — but they are not misers; they live balanced lives.
  • 97% are homeowners; they tend to live in fine homes in older neighborhoods. (Only 27% have ever built their “dream home.”)
  • 92% are married; only 2% are currently divorced. Millionaire couples have less than one-third the divorce rate of non-millionaire couples. The typical couple in the millionaire group has been married for 28 years and has three children. Nearly 50% of the wives of the super-rich do not work outside the home.
  • Most are first-generation millionaires who became wealthy as business owners or executives; most did not inherit their wealth.
  • Almost all are well educated; 90% are college graduates and 52% hold advanced degrees; however, few graduated at the top of their class — most were “B” students. They learned two lessons from college: discipline and tenacity.
  • Most live balanced lives; they are not workaholics. 93% listed socializing with family members as their #1 activity; 45% play golf. (Stanley didn’t survey whether they were avid book readers — too bad.)
  • 52% attend church at least once a month; 37% consider themselves very religious.
  • They share five basic ingredients to success: integrity, discipline, social skills, a supportive spouse and hard work.
  • They contribute heavily to charity, church and community activities (64%).
  • Their #1 worry: taxes! Their average annual federal tax bill: $300,000. The top one-tenth of 1% of U.S. income earners pays 14.7% of all income taxes collected!
  • “Not one millionaire had anything nice to say about gambling.” Okay, but his survey also showed that 33% played the lottery at least once during the year!

The full article is here: https://www.markskousen.com/how-to-be-the-next-millionaire-next-door/