Your Questions About Investing Tips For Beginners

Mark asks…

caring for goose down bedding tips?


I have recently been given some quality goose down which I used to make pillows and a bed comforter. I invested in Egyptian cotton sateen covers to make the bedding items and I would really appreciate any advice on how to look after the items so that they ‘live long and prosper’ 🙂

Do you need pillow protectors for the pillows? If so, how do you choose one (there are different materials used for the purpose)? Can you recommend a particular brand?

Any advice is much appreciated!

I know that these questions may sound silly, but I am just a beginner in the art of housekeeping:).

John answers:

Shake the items every day when you make the beds. Once in a while you can hang them outside on a nice sunny day to get a good airing. Pillow protectors are great, just make sure that you wash them regularly and that you allow the pillows to get a good airing regularly. The cheaper “quilted” protectors don’t wear well and soon go knobbly on the surface, so invest in some good quality ones, or use 2 pillow cases in the meantime.

Donald asks…

I would like to play the Ukulele?

I really want to play the ukulele! 🙂
I was wondering if I should start out with a cheap one, maybe $15 or $20, or if I should invest in a nice one right away?
I saw one I liked online that is like $36 dollars, is that an average price? It’s blue with a turtle on it so I’m not sure if it would be considered a good one…
Please help!! What is the average price for a good ukulele? And should I start with a nice one from the beginning?

Also, any tips for picking out a beginners uke would be appreciated! Obsviously I have never played before… Thanks!

John answers:

Usually an ukulele for under $50 is more of an “art object” or tourist ploy” than an instrument that is meant to be played. The give-away usually is if you can’t see the natural wood grain because it has been painted over (to hide the flaws). In general the smaller ukuleles are cheaper but they are also the “plinkiest” sounding and may be uncomfortable to hold and play (fingers get too cramped trying to hold more than a one-finger chord. If you really want to learn to love to play the ukulele look at a concert sized like the Lanikai or kala ukulele. They will run closer to $100 but will be more of what you will keep and treasure as that “first ukulele”.

Laura asks…

Recommendations on a work-out DVD?

Okay, here’s the thing. I want to loose about 100 or so pounds and keep it off for a wedding that isn’t happening just yet but will be down the road. I’m investing in the diet pill Hydroxicut to help me during round 1 (getting the habit of working out, etc) and I am also looking into a Denise Austin DVD. I do live in a neighborhood and can walk, but choose not to, great distances are not in my friendly book.

I would love to know what DVD the yahoo user has used, and it doesn’t have to be Denise Austin – whatever you bought, used and worked for you. NOTE that I cannot do extreme moves as of yet, so I am looking for a beginners so to speak.

I have bad knees and CAN NOT – I repeat – CAN NOT do any type of squatting, sitting on my knees or anything that could result in either of my kneecaps dislocating.

I am at least 280-90 and would love to loose at least 100 pounds within 1 – 4 months tops; nothing that takes a long, long time to do. (I loose weight fairly easy, but don’t want to be working on a goal that should only take so long)

Plus any tips you could spare.

If I need to add more detail to this question, I will.

John answers:

I’ve been using ResponseDesign’s Yourself!Fitness. It’s not a DVD, it’s a computer Software/game that gives you the feel of a fitness DVD, but adjusts itself to your progress.
You can also choose the workout duration, long-term goal, and such.
I haven’t tried other workout software (There have been quite a few since it got out), but it is kinda fun.

James asks…

Learning the market….?

I have been learning about trading in stocks and funds for about 2 years now. I am young and need to get started now. When I make enough after college I will invest $2000 a year.

My question here is this. I am about to open an account with Scottrade with $500 initial. What are some stocks I should look into. I definatley want to go with the Vanguard funds as well.

Any tips or advice for a beginner?
Yeah I know high and low

John answers:

Go with your gut and stick to the long term. Stocks will rise and fall. As long as you understand buy low sell high.

Um, make sure the stock that’s low isn’t going to go lower and stay low. The company may be in a bit of instability and the outlook isn’t good. New companies who drop for a day or weekly average look good. Buy then and wait it out for a few months or years.

Good luck.

Ken asks…

Absolute Beginner’s Ballet, a few questions?

I’ve started doing absolute beginners ballet class for adults, and I’m 18 The class is the basic level below Beginners and Advanced.
I’ve been going for two weeks now; 3x a week for 1h30m each session. The other dancers in my class are quite varied in skill and equipment; some have the full ballet outfit and shoes, whereas others like me are still in socks and leggings.

After how many lessons should I invest in soft shoes? I already know of places like Bloch &c. but I want to know when I should go to them. My teacher is always overrun with questions at the end of the lessons and I have to rush off to another class so haven’t had a chance to stay behind.

Furthermore, how long before I begin to see results? I’m doing other cardio [swimming for 2hours a week] but am not particularly flexible or fit, and a little off balance. My posture needs improving, and I’m finding it hard to correct and discipline myself.

Any tips?

I’m not thinking about en pointe or even performing yet, I know that will be a while. But if I persist as I have outlined, roughly how long should it be until I can graduate to en pointe or ever perform? Let me stress I have no ambition to be a professional, I know at this stage that is difficult if not impossible.

Many thanks. 🙂

John answers:

Get soft shoes as soon as you can. Full sole leather ballet shoes are best for beginners because they work your feet to the fullest. Not having any shoes at all will not improve your strength or techneique. You will get used to having no shoes and this will make you become lazy. The sooner you get shoes the better. You should also invest in some ballet tights and maybe a leotard. A tank top and shorts are ok for now though. As long as you can move freely in them.

You will see results gradually. Of coarse the harder you work the more results you will see. You should maybe start taking yogo or pilates lessons or even just get a book or dvd. They will help you with the balance, strength and flexibility needed for ballet. Since you are only a beginner flexibility is not nessisary at the moment but it will help when you start to advance into harder exercises.

I dont know what exactly you are working towards. Do you just want to become fitter, slimmer more agile? Or do you really like to dance and do it for the pleasure? Either way you should print a picture out of something that inspires you. E.g you ideal shape, a famous ballet dancer ect. It will help you with motivation.

You do not need to be en pointe to preform. Maybe you can ask your teacher about preforming before class instead of after? Im sure she will be happy to answer your questions. It takes usually about 2-3 years minimum of ballet training before going en pointe. Some teachers like their dancers to take a year of pre pointe. (this is just for strengthening towards pointe. You get pre-pointe or demi-pointe shoes that look like pointe shoes but are softer and don’t allow the dancer fully up onto their toes. They get you used to the strange shape of pointe shoes before you get them)

good luck and i hope i helped! If you have any other questions you can email me on

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