11 Year-Old Soap Maker Donovan Smith Donates Proceeds to Help Homeless

Donovan Smith soap maker

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Donovan Smith is 11 years old and has an amazing talent for soap making.  He is starting his own business, and he is trying to help people in the process, donating to the same organization that helped him and his mother find a home.

Donuts, ice cream and hamburgers—treats that look so good you could just take a bite out of them.  “Someone actually licked one,” said 11-year-old Donovan Smith.  That someone quickly regretted it.  The treats are actually Donovan’s soap creations.

He makes soap with Aloe Vera and goat’s milk for his bath product business, Toil and Trouble.  Donovan chooses the molds, the colors and the fragrances.  “Darth Vader smells kind of like cologne. I tried to make it smell what Darth Vader would smell like,” he said.

Once Darth Vader smells just right, he sells him and the rest of the gang at the Rail Yards Market in Albequerque each Sunday.  He is the youngest vendor there.  He said his Yoda soap is one of the best sellers. It takes about an hour to make twelve of them.

Twenty percent of the sales from his pie-shaped soaps will go to Supportive Housing Coalition of New Mexico, an organization Donovan and his mother, Casey, said helped get them back on their feet three years ago when they struggled with homelessness themselves.

“He was still going to school every day. I was having meltdowns during the day because I could not see this getting any better at all,” Casey said.

Casey is a former Navy cryptologist, still dealing with PTSD and a leg injury as a result of her time in the military.  She said she couldn’t find a job during the recession, hearing she was overqualified.  Now, with the support of local groups, she has a job, an apartment and a hobby, helping her son with his budding business of soaps.

“They’re fun and the fact that they have the potential to help someone else makes it even better,” Casey said.

To see video of this story, click here.

article by Lysee Mitri via krqe.com 

The Wayans Brothers Kick Off Brand-New Comedy Tour in U.S.

Wayans brothers Keenen (56), Damon (53), Shawn (43) and Marlon Wayans (41) are known around the world as some of the funniest comedians in the game.  Continuing to build on their huge successes on television (“In Living Color”, “Last Comic Standing”, “My Wife and Kids”) and in film (“Scary Movie”, “White Chicks”, “Haunted House”), the Wayans’ are currently on traveling the U.S. with “The Wayans Brothers Tour”, bringing the siblings on stage together as they’ve never been before.The tour kicked off last week on the East Coast – check below for upcoming cities and tour dates:

The Wayans Brothers Tour Dates

July 23-24, 2014- Potawatami Casino / Milwaukee, WI

July 25, 2014 – Star Plaza Casino / Merriville, IN

August 1, 2014 – NJPAC / Newark, NJ

August 2, 2014 – Tower Theater / Philadelphia, PA

August 8, 2014 – Chuckchansi Casino / Coarsegold, CA

August 15, 2014 – Seminole Hard Rock Live Arena / Hollywood, FL

August 16, 2014 – Hard Rock Live / Orlando, FL

August 21, 2014 – Wagner Noel Pac / Midland, TX

August 22, 2014 – Abraham Chavez Theatre / El Paso, TX

September 12, 2014 – Jackson Convention Complex / Jackson, MS

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (follow @lakinhutcherson)

11 Year-Old Genius Ramarni Wilford Scores Higher Than Einstein on IQ Test

072114 11-Year-Old Genius

An 11-year-old in the U.K. found out he’s a genius after taking an IQ test. His 162 score makes him smarter than Bill Gates – and Albert Einstein – according to the Romford Recorder.

Ramarni Wilford was invited to take the IQ test after writing an essay an essay snagged him an invitation to a graduation ceremony at Oxford University. Although he was very surprised and happy by the results – he’s in the top one percent in the U.K. – he remains modest.

“I can’t begin to compare myself to these great men whose hard work clearly proves that they are true geniuses,” Wilford says.

RELATED: Child Prodigy Adam Kirby, 2, becomes Youngest Ever to Join Genius Club Mensa

A member of a gifted and talented program as well as the Brilliant Club, he can now add a membership to Mensa to his future college applications. Mensa, the world’s oldest IQ society, has invited Wilford to join so he can attend exclusive events and mingle with like-minded kids.

“I don’t really see having a high IQ as a big deal, but I do feel very privileged to be invited to join Mensa and can’t wait to attend some of the events,” he says.

Read more at the Romford Recorder.

article by Teronda Seymore via clutchmagonline.com

Scholarship Coach Shanice Miller Shares How She Graduated College with No Debt and a $10,000 Refund


Scholarship Coach and Author Shanice Miller

Republished from the Huffington Post:

In our Money Mic series, we hand over the podium to people with controversial views about money. These are their views, not ours, but we welcome your responses.

Today, one woman shares how she amassed enough scholarships to graduate from college debt-free.

The first time I ever heard about student loan debt was in 2007. I was a high school senior in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, and in the midst of applying for colleges.

My cousin, who had graduated with a business degree six months earlier, had come over to visit and was complaining about someone named Sallie Mae. Since getting her degree, she hadn’t been able to find a job — and was struggling to make payments on her $9,000 of student debt.

I wondered: Who in the world is Sallie Mae?

After hearing my cousin’s explanation — that Sallie Mae was a company that gives students money to attend college — I was shocked, worried and confused.

I’d never thought critically about the costs associated with going to college. Everyone — family, teachers, friends and even my guidance counselors — just told me I needed to attend in order to secure a better future, which I could do by choosing the school that offered the best education. But it hadn’t occurred to me that I’d have to pay for that privilege.

My mind started racing: How would I ever be able to afford college? The housing bubble had just burst, and I knew my mom, a real estate agent, wouldn’t be able to contribute. What would happen if I couldn’t come up with the money? Would I still be able to get a good job?

I knew I had to come up with a plan — quick.

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J Dilla Recording Equipment Headed to the Smithsonian

J Dilla Recording Equipment Headed to the Smithsonian

J Dilla was only 32 years old when he died in 2006, but in his too-short life, the prolific producer worked with hip-hop icons including Busta Rhymes, Erykah Badu, The Roots, De la Soul, Common, and A Tribe Called Quest, even earning a Grammy nomination for his work with Tribe. And now, another honor for the late Detroit beatmaker: His recording equipment will be featured in the Smithsonian.

At the ninth DC Loves Dilla tribute concert on Thursday night, Dilla’s mom, Maureen Yancey, announced onstage that she would donate her son’s custom Minamoog Voyager — one of the last synthesizers Bob Moog built for someone before he died in 2005 — and his MPC to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture.

“I feel it’s necessary to raise the level of art appreciation in the hip-hop sector and honor my son James Dewitt Yancey, one of the most influential individuals in the history of hip-hop,” Dilla’s mom said in a Smithsonian press release announcing the donation.

Below, watch Yancey announce the donation at the benefit concert, which raises money to battle lupus, a disease that might have played a part in Dilla’s early death.

article by Katie Atkinson via billboard.com

UPDATE: Charges Dropped Against Shanesha Taylor, Mom Who Left Kids In Car During Job Interview

Shanesha Taylor freed

We’re happy to report that charges against Shanesha Taylor, the mother who left her children in the car during a job interview, have been dropped.

The gripping mugshot featuring Taylor and her tear-stained face spread quickly and garnered worldwide support for her case. According to the Maricopa County Attorney, a judge ruled that Taylor will have the charges dismissed if she completes a diversion program.

Taylor was arrested back in March after police say she left two children in her Dodge Durango for 45 minutes while she was in a Farmers Insurance office in Scottsdale. Taylor told authorities that she was unemployed, didn’t have child care and had been occasionally homeless.

This morning, after the deal was reached, Taylor attended a settlement conference this morning, where she told reporters:

“This is a beautiful resolution to a very long, very hard journey.”

The program will require Taylor to complete parenting and substance abuse classes and establish education and child care trusts for her three children. Each education trust must have $10,000 in it.

If you’re wondering where that money will come from, you may remember that fundraisers were set up on Taylor’s behalf to help with legal fees and other expenses. The effort raised $144,775 from over four thousand donors.

In reference to the resolution, Bill Montgomery, the county attorney, said: “Where we can focus on an opportunity for rehabilitation without having to use punitive consequences we’re always willing to take a look at that. And our resolution today shouldn’t be taken as a policy shift, this is just how we were able to resolve this one particular case.”

They also took into account the fact that Taylor was searching for employment and had no other criminal history.

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Beyoncé Exhibit to Debut at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum


In this Thursday, July 17, 2014 photo, from left, outfits from Beyonce’s 2013 Super Bowl performance, 2011″Sweet Dreams,” 2003 “Single Ladies” and 2003 “Dangerously in Love” are displayed in a new exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. The Rock Hall announced Friday, July 18, 2014, that outfits from Beyonce’s Super Bowl performance and music videos will debut Tuesday in the Ahmet Ertegun Main Exhibit Hall in its Legends of Rock section next to iconic pieces from Michael Jackson, David Bowie and Bruce Springsteen. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

NEW YORK (AP) – A fashion exhibit centered on Beyoncé will debut at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in a section previously featuring only Hall of Famers.  The Rock Hall announced today that outfits from Beyoncé’s Super Bowl performance and music videos will debut Tuesday in the Ahmet Ertegun Main Exhibit Hall in its Legends of Rock section, next to iconic pieces from Michael Jackson, David Bowie and Bruce Springsteen.

The 32-year-old Beyoncé would be eligible for induction into the Rock Hall as a member of Destiny’s Child in 2022 and as a solo artist in 2027.  The exhibit in Cleveland, Ohio, will feature Beyonce’s ubiquitous black leotard from her “Single Ladies” music video, as well as her body suit, skirt and jacket from her Super Bowl performance last year in New Orleans.

Rock Hall curator Meredith Rutledge-Borger said they have been trying to court Beyonce “for a really long time.”  “When we looked at the depth of the amount of stuff that she was willing to send, we just thought, ‘The only way we can really showcase these items is to put them in the Legends of Rock area in the museum,’ which really is the spot that we have to pay tribute to legends of rock, which Beyonce has proven herself to be,” she said in an interview.

Lee Anne Callahan-Longo, the general manager of Beyonce’s production house, Parkwood Entertainment, said the singer was honored and humbled by the opportunity to have her personal items in the museum.

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