Too Trusting = Easy Prey

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Con artists are real and I had the misfortune to meet one in the flesh recently. I didn’t see it coming. That’s exactly how they do it too. It’s a long story, but one I will be using in my writing when I start my novel. This part will be based on a true story! And OMG is it a page-turner!!!

But let me pay forward what I have learned from my experience and how you can prevent being duped like me.

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Step 1: Don’t talk to strangers. (This one I struggle with since I’m an extrovert and love to chat with anyone about just about anything. I find it makes life more fun but BEWARE! This can be your undoing.)

Step 2: When you meet a stranger that seems decent and kind, don’t feel bad for asking questions that verify a story or place or time. Call them on their crap. If they are the real deal then this is just a “getting to know you better” step, but if they have something to hide you will make them uncomfortable and probably send them running, which is a good thing.

Step 3: Google them! Seems simple enough, but do it right away…don’t wait. Google everyone you know or meet just to be sure they are on the up & up. I did a Google search and nothing came up so I figured this person being 65 years old was just not online and wasn’t a wanted person so it seemed logical that nothing was there. Don’t stop with Google though! No, keep going deeper. Court records in the state they reside, county property records, spell the name several different ways. I found a serious rap sheet that had me thanking my lucky stars I am alive and haven’t lost anything more than my dignity. My family will tease the shit out of me until the day I die now, and it’s totally deserved!

Step 4: Don’t trust people right off the bat. Seems jaded, but people need to earn your trust. I have that whole thing backwards so no judgment here if you need to work on that like me.

Step 5: When on vacation in a tropical location when your defenses are down is when you are your most vulnerable. You get duped by the magic of a sea breeze and the beautiful waves. Keep your guard up around new people you meet. Not everyone is who they say they are. You only know yourself and those in your life that have proved themselves trustworthy. Question everything and everyone that comes your way. You’ll be glad you did!

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I know that 99% of people are decent and honest and not on the take, but that 1% of psychopaths with a devious nature are sure hard to spot. Better to be safe than sorry and practice these steps to protect yourself from being caught in their web of lies.

Sending all the best to you and yours!  ~Tillie

PS. look for my amazing book Christmas 2017! You’ll want to put it on your wish list!XOXO

Number 9 of 2015

My 9th favorite moment of 2015 would be the day in February that I donated the ‘Yarnbombing For Lunches’  auction funds to the Eatonville School District’s business manager, Daniel Lunghofer.

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Yarnbombing For Lunches raised $400 to donate to the Eatonville School District on behalf of students with negative lunch accounts. Here I am personally delivering the money order to the school business manager Daniel Lunghofer.

It had taken a year of planning and creating to pull off the yarnbomb of downtown Eatonville. It was a large public display of art created with hand knit and crocheted fabric that was then sewn around trees, lamp posts, benches, and rocks. It looked amazing! Thanks to the efforts of talented Eatonville fiber artists who joined forces to put their art to good use; raising money to pay off negative lunch accounts in the Eatonville School District.

We wanted to change the policy of trashing food because of insufficient funds and create better communication from school to home about account balances. Our goal was to raise $500. We got close with $400 raised in all.

Through our donation, we were able to do what we set out to accomplish! Robo-calls were put in place to call home to inform parents about lunch account balances and the policy has been updated to forbid the taking of food from the kids. Success!

Hopefully, I can get our entire group together to do next year’s donation during the January School Board meeting. I’ll keep you posted…

8th Favorite Moment Of 2015

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Isaiah Thomas signing cards at the backpack giveaway.

We had the great honor of participating in a backpack giveaway hosted by Isaiah Thomas, Tacoma native and point guard for NBA’s Boston Celtics.

It was held at the Boys & Girls Club in Tacoma on August 29th, 2015. I remember my kids complaining that they didn’t want to get out of their pj’s and go out on a windy, chilly day to “just get backpacks and school supplies.” But once I got them there, they saw the value of such an experience and they had a blast.

What they quickly realized was that it’s just as important to receive gifts as it is to give them. The generosity of Isaiah and his sponsors was a beautiful gift to the community that raised him. It showed all the kids that dreams can come true with hard work and the importance of giving back when you can.

The whole event was fun with free food and drinks, games with prizes, and a “whip” contest! All of the families left happy for their time spent there and all the school kids left with a cool new backpack loaded with all the school essentials.

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It was touching to see my kids go from: “this is going to be so lame” to saying “Thank you, Isaiah, for the backpacks and supplies” with true gratitude for the gift.

I hope Mr. Thomas knows the positive influence he makes on kids and how he set in motion a goal for me; to give back in all I do.

Thank you Isaiah Thomas!

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