No 561



It was a sad day around our house a few weeks ago. I sold my boat, motor and trailer. My fishing rig had sat, unused, under the boat shed that I had constructed to protect it from the elements, for the past four or five years. With money in hand, Viola made a suggestion. She said, "Why don't you enclose the boat shed and make us a storage building?"
I know just enough about constructing or building things to be dangerous, but I took her suggestion and went down to Lowe's and purchased all the necessary building materials. After a few weeks, and a lot of sawing, cutting and nailing, it is now complete. I must say, it looks pretty good.
When it comes to building projects, my problem is that I don't have many tools, and since this is not my primary interest and I don't want to tie up the money, I just use what I have and do the best I can. In this regard, we get a program here each Saturday on our local PBS television station called, "The New Yankee Workshop" and it features the craftsmanship of Norm Abram. Perhaps you have seen it. Norm is a master craftsman and builds the most detailed and beautiful pieces of furniture you could die for. Many are from the early colonial era, when woodworking tools were very crude and limited. None were power driven, except by elbow grease.
There has never been a piece of furniture that I watched Norm turn out that I did not say or think to myself, "What a fabulous workshop and, man, the tools that he has to work with." Having the right tools is really the key to success in a lot of things.
Today I want to tell you about another kind of tool that may be of great benefit, especially if you have young children who plan to attend college. The other day a good size package arrived in the mail and it turned out to be a terrific new product called, "The Back Pocket College Planner and Organizer."
I wish you could see it, because my word description may not do it justice. This product is a book, with four tabs, bound in the front with an accordion-type expandable series of pockets in the back. The pockets are held together with a fancy string that wraps around a plastic button which prevents material stored in the pockets from falling out.
The physical make up of this product is very impressive, but that's not the point here. It's the information it contains that really makes it special.
The author, Ricki de Wolf, is a certified independent college counselor and has worked in college counseling for nearly a decade. She knows from personal experience that collecting and organizing all the various materials for a high school graduate to apply for college is a foreboding experience. She says, "I became aware of the disorganization when I started working with my own two sons and the students who had come to me for help. This new product, BPCPO, came about because I wanted my students to have an edge when it came to college admissions."
Now, let me tell you what's in this new product and you will understand why it's so valuable. Among the 18 brief chapters you will find: College Counselors, Understanding the College System, Understanding Standardized Tests, Personal Achievement, Admission Timelines, Financial Aid & Scholarships, College Application Checklists, Personal Data, How to Prepare for A College Visit and several others.
If you have a need, here is the key that will make this product so practical for you and your child. In the front of the book, and also the pockets in the back, it begins with the 9th grade and goes through the 12th grade with all the pertinent information you will need. The pockets are labeled to keep them organized and all together. Trust me, it's fantastic. You can get more information on their Web site at We are only talking $25 and it could save you thousands.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, Ark. 72034. To support literacy, buy his book, "Learning, Earning & Giving Back.")