The middle class is squeezed. A lot. And it’s getting worse.
Chances are, you know this first-hand. I do. Milk is outrageous, the price of gas makes me cringe, and my monthly electric bill needs to be opened sitting down. The worst part? As prices go up, there is less money coming in. No wonder “staycations” are the thing in summer travel.
Between 2000 and 2007, median household income dropped $1,175 – yet costs for the average family rose by nearly triple that amount. Daycare alone went up more than $1500 a month for some families. Who has an extra $1500 a month?! To make matters worse, to cover rising expenses, more and more families are turning to plastic, creating a vicious cycle.
One way to keep some extra money in your pocket? Don’t get a speeding ticket. Who knew you could get that kind of advice at CNN.com? Good stuff
Of course, if lawmakers could put their party troubles aside for a few minutes, maybe Washington could actually help you deal with these skyrocketing gas prices. Congress has a month-long recess fast-approaching – fast being next month… as in one week away. Would the bill currently stalled in Congress because of this partisan bickering be enough to get you some relief? Ahhh, the million-dollar question.
Dogs are amazing creatures. They can change your mood in an instant, they understand you without ever having to say a word, and they love you no matter what, asking only for love in return. Dogs also have an uncanny knack for knowing just how to help; Karen Shirk calls it “magic”.
Confined to a wheelchair and on a respirator because of a rare disease, Shirk first experienced that magic when she got her service dog, Ben. "He gave me a reason to get up in the morning," Shirk remembers. "I went from existing to living." And now she’s bringing that freedom to kids. For ten years, Shirk has been harnessing this canine magic and unconditional love to help autistic children. Meet Karen Shrik, CNN Hero.
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