Vera Bradley co-founder visits SMC

first_img “I just didn’t think outside the box,” she said, thinking back to her first aspiration to be a business teacher.  As a successful businesswoman today, the sky is the limit for Miller and her industry. Primarily, Miller said to “listen to your instincts” the way she and Baekgaard had that cold February day at the airport, and to “be engaging, interested and passionate” in business, and with any dream or ambition in life for that matter.  According to Miller, the VBFBC hopes to bring the results of groundbreaking scientific research directly to the bedside, helping develop new treatments for cancer patients, and to discover quicker, more effective ways of spotting breast cancer on a molecular level.  “Change is constant, and you should embrace it,” Miller said. “If you don’t keep pace with change, you will be left in the dust.”  According to Miller, new this season there will be trendy laptop backpacks available  The Vera Bradley line has also expanded to include lunch boxes, totes, cosmetics bags, jewelry boxes and stationary.  The foundation currently funds a research facility at the Indiana University Bren Simon Cancer Center — nationally recognized as a leader in research to find a cure, and has notably risen over $10 million for the cause, Miller said.  Miller also further discussed key entrepreneurial words to live by that she said drove the Vera Bradley business to its success. Miller said the story of the Vera Bradley Company began in February 1982 when she and her business partner, Barbara Bradley Baekgaard, while sitting in an Atlanta airport, noticed that women’s luggage was tragically lacking in style.center_img Vera Bradley started with a focus on luggage, sports bags and the smaller handbag, Miller said. However, women today also find frequent use from Vera Bradley laptop bags, cases and slips.  Taking a step back, as a college student, Miller said she lived in a world where women went to school to be either teachers or nurses.  “I don’t put a ceiling on anything,” she said. Patricia Miller, co-founder of the international company Vera Bradley, shared the secrets behind how her Indiana business dream evolved into the successful international company it is today, as she spoke to a group of students at the Vander Vennet Theater at Saint Mary’s Tuesday. In 1998, Vera Bradley joined the fight for a cure for breast cancer by establishing the Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer (VBFBC).  “I have all the faith in the world,” Miller said.last_img read more

Killer Tree

first_img Black walnuts are valuable as shade and timber trees. They produce delectable nuts, too. But if your black walnut overhangs your garden, your tree may be out to get you. The fruit, leaves and roots of black walnut trees contain a chemical, juglone, that can injure other plants. Ingesting even a small amount of pure juglone can cause a serious poisoning effect in humans. Inside the tree, juglone is a clear liquid (called prejuglone) that’s nontoxic. If the tree cells that contain this prejuglone are damaged, cut, or injured, it is immediately oxidized into its toxic form. You can see this by cutting into the husk of a small walnut. It quickly changes from green to dark brown as it is exposed to the air. The clear prejuglone is rapidly oxidized to dark, reddish-brown juglone. Insects, diseases and mechanical injury can cause prejuglone to be oxidized into its toxic form. Over time, juglone naturally leaks out of walnut roots, leaves and buds into the soil.Not Just in Walnuts By far the highest concentrations of juglone are found in black walnut parts. But many other members of the walnut family contain it, too. English walnut, pecan and the rest of the hickories all have small amounts. The fruit husks contain the highest concentrations in any species. One of juglone’s many purposes is to prevent pests from attacking new seeds.Juglone’s Effects Some people and animals are susceptible to juglone damage. Consuming too many leaves or using walnut sawdust for bedding can cause a number of problems with animals. Some people are especially sensitive. Cutting walnut lumber can coat you with sawdust. Everywhere this sawdust lands can produce a red welt on some people. In the soil, the oxidized juglone will damage many living things, including plant roots. If it leaks back onto a walnut root, though, it is quickly made nontoxic again and stored. Juglone is a respiration toxin as a herbicide. Once it’s released into the soil, small amounts can damage and kill the roots of neighbors. Beneath the tree, it severely damages annual plants, garden vegetables, fruit trees and some broadleaf perennials. Most grasses seem immune. Wherever walnut roots travel, though, they change the soil they move through by adding juglone.Take Care in Your Landscape For very susceptible plants, like tomatoes, potatoes and peppers, even walnut mulch can be damaging. Be sure to age or compost leaves, twigs, fruit husks and wood chips from walnut trees before adding them to a garden or landscape. An oxidation and aging process converts all the prejuglone into toxic juglone. Then further aging and oxidation, under moist conditions, will break juglone apart into nontoxic pieces. Grind down black walnut stumps or remove them. Take away any chips or sawdust for composting. Some trees, such as red maple, willow and apple, won’t perform well on sites recently occupied by black walnut roots. Many plants won’t grow well around living black walnuts or where the trees have recently lived. One full growing season, though, is usually enough to eliminate most of the juglone from a healthy soil. When you look into your garden or backyard, be careful not to ignore your black walnut (Juglans nigra) tree. Lurking inside its leaves, fruits and roots is a toxic chemical made to control competition.Pros and Conslast_img read more

7 ways you could be putting yourself in debt

first_img1. Trying to keep up with the JonesesWe have all seen our friends and coworkers with some new purchase that we can’t help but be jealous of. That jealousy is a dangerous thing which can lead to unnecessary purchases. Don’t plan your purchase around others who could possibly be making bad financial choice. Trying to keep up is often an unwise way to spend your money.2. Spending too much on creditPurchasing something on credit is a convenience, but also can be a hindrance on your financial wellbeing. Credit is basically a loan and should be viewed as such. Really consider any purchase that you can’t afford to spend cash on right now. Only paying the monthly minimum payments on a credit card will have you paying a fortune in interest and put you deeper in debt.3. Having a reduced income, same expensesWhether from a layoff, reduced hours or a spouse having to take some time off, you’ll need to adjust your budget in accordance with any changes to your pay. Not making changes could lead to large debt and stress.4. Family spending issuesCommunication is a key skill to have when earning money, but perhaps even more important in keeping it. As seen on TV time and time again, a wife sneaking out on a shopping spree or a husband trying to hide his new set of golf clubs can cause financial headaches. Even small purchases add up. You need to understand your financial capabilities, and then share them with everyone in your family.5. Not creating a budgetThis is seen as a problem on every personal finance website, blog, article and app out there. It seems like a no brainer but according to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, nearly two-thirds of adults don’t track their spending. Writing down you expenses can make identifying unnecessary purchases incredibly easy, and gives you a point of reference on the path to improving your financial health.6. Helping a friend with a loanOn occasion someone may ask you to cosign a loan or borrow some cash. The old adage of never lending a friend money holds true. If for some reason they were to not able to pay the loan back, you are losing money, and possibly stuck making monthly payments. Don’t risk your financial health for a something that could strain your friendship as well.7. Using credit to pay debtGetting debt consolidation loans can be a great way to roll several debts into one single payment with a low interest rate, but be aware. The best plan of action is to create a plan for paying off the debt rather than taking on new debt to pay it off. 124SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Tyler Atwell Web: Detailslast_img read more