Squishies – The Latest Craze Sweeping Middle Schools and Beyond

Kids are natural born collectors. They also love fads. Enter: the Squishy. These Japanese imports are the newest craze and are causing quite a stir. Not only are they hard to find, as they are not sold in your average store, most adults have never heard of them.

Today we will answer all of the common questions we receive about squishies. What are they? Squishies are soft “bread like” mascots, shaped as either a type of baked good, a character, or a combination of the two. They are the newest version of the stress ball, yet softer and more “kawaii” (the Japanese word for “cute”). Squishies are usually scented, cake or bread being the most common choice. Typically, squishies are attached to a cell phone strap or a lanyard.

Why do kids love them? Well, of course they are cute. Squishies are tactile and fun for kids to “squish” over and over, hence the name. Add in the sweet scent and you have a multiple sensory toy that can be quite irresistible.

Where did this fad come from? Like many great fads, this is another one of those fun and wacky imports from Japan. Japanese teens (and adults!) love to decorate their cell phones with fake treats, fruits and gems. This is called deco-den. You have probably seen someone with a Hello Kitty cell phone “blinged out” in this manner. In addition to making their cell phone covers as kawaii as can be, they also love to hang cute or funny straps from them. Cell phone straps are a huge trend in Japan, and have been for several years.

In trying to pin down how kids in the US have become obsessed with squishies, we seem to have narrowed it down one powerful source: YouTube. Search the word “squishies” in YouTube and you will find hundreds upon hundreds of videos all about them. On YouTube, kids, and even adults, trade squishies, show off their squishy collection and even attempt to make home made squishies. Two things are quite clear in watching these videos. A. these kids are absolutely obsessed with squishies. B. they want a lot of them, and the more “rare” the better.

Where can you find rare squishies, or even squishies in general? You will find the best variety in Japan. Of course, most parents are not willing to travel around the world for a five dollar trinket. Another place they seem to show up from time to time is in Japan Towns and even China Towns that exist in a handful of cities across the country. The easiest place to find them is right at your finger tips.

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Work and Study

The relationship between work and study should not be underestimated.

It is important that youngsters in general, and teenagers in particular, get real life experience of what it takes to succeed in the ‘real world’, what it takes to make money, and how hard dad or mum have to work to earn those extra few cents.

Recently a dad talked about the problems of getting his son to study; the family is wealthy and the son saw little need to make any effort to revise, do well in his forthcoming exams, and move onto a university and undergraduate subject with prospects of a rewarding career.

He saw his parents, particularly mum, as a ‘soft touch’.

The harder the concerned parents tried, the more obstinate the son became; the inverse law of proportionality seemed to be at work, or perhaps the law of diminishing returns. Necessity was definitely not the mother of invention!

‘Man he is a Lazy B…!’ complained the father.

At school, the youngster seemed to have learnt a lot about his ‘rights’ – but little about responsibility.

He didn’t realise that ‘rights’ and ‘responsibilities’ are the same bedfellows – they both start with the letter ‘r’!

The current situation was inevitable…

Things changed, however, after our recommendation that the son spend time working in the kitchens of one his father’s famous restaurants over the summer holidays (well, what else did he expect given his parents’ gentler efforts?).

Washing plates to earn his pocket-money was no fun; it didn’t take long before the grades started to improve.

Study was clearly a better option than washing plates in the kitchen.

Take Warren Buffet, one of the richest men in the world.

Warren has a wise head on his shoulders and drives the same old car and lives in the same old house as he did at the start of his career; his common sense has to be respected since his actions reflect his words.

He can afford to live in mansions, drive better cars but through his example has made clear that he intends to give most of his wealth to charity.

Warren believes that his children must learn to earn a living, make their own way in the real world.

The last thing he wants is to ‘handicap’ his progeny by handing over his billions.

Some of the smartest students at The University of Oxford in The Business Management School often spent their summer holidays waiting at tables before they got First Class Honours.

They are now CEOs of major companies, earning a very healthy living.

Consider another example from the world of tennis, the William sisters where Venus and Serena dominated the women’s game for many years.

Their early history is one of being introduced to the ‘Bronx’ by their dad where gang bullets were not uncommon whilst they trained.

The William sisters soon realized that working for success in tennis was a better option than living in ghettos.

Where cajoling fails, direct experience often succeeds.

If you want your children to study more effectively, let them work for it!

Make Money With Niche Marketing

You can have a good income with niche marketing, but you will have to do a certain amount of work each month to keep the site up to date.

It is interesting that many people try to start their online business by selling products on how to make money online when they are not successful themselves. But there is a lot of money to make online when you start to work in non Internet Marketing niches.

The best way to earn a good income is to have either a website or a blog which you host on your own website. That way you can have total control on what you include.

Once you have decided on your niche, you need to either write your own content or have some written for you. Then you need to have some products to promote.

Now you might think this is harder to do than it actually is. Stop, and think for a moment, if you are careful about your weight, how many diet books you have bought. You may have bought many that you have never read. But anyone with a weight problem will buy every diet book in the hope to find that secret diet tip that will get them slim overnight or in a short time without any work.

When a person is passionate about a subject, they will be ready to buy anything that will further their knowledge in that niche. Time and time again, people are doing this offline, and they will not change their habits because it is now online.

It may take time for them to build up confidence in you and your site, but with good quality information they will soon be aware of how trustworthy you are.

Within your niche you will learn other areas that people want, and will be able to promote those items as well. As you develop your niche site, you will be able to move into more and more products, and you will find that you are able to earn more and more money online.

Once you have a good plan, start created as many niche sites as you can, while maintaining a high quality standard. It's OK to start off small. If you can create one 5-page niche site a week, you will be doing very well.

There is money to be made through niche marketing but like any business online you will need to do some work.

SEO 7 Key Steps to Make Money With SEO

Search Engine Optimization has been proven to be one of the best techniques any webmaster can use in order to drive quality organic traffic to his or her site and eventually convert this traffic to instant money. Here are some key steps on how you can do exactly that:

1. Fill your content with relevant keywords. Make your site crawl by using appropriate keywords or keyphrases so search engine can easily find you. Sprinkle these keywords on your articles without sounding too unnatural. Remember you have to make your content both search engine and user-friendly.

2. Build links. To get optimum result, build links to websites which are already indexed by search engines. These websites usually have enormous traffic and good search engine ranking that can drive quality traffic to your webpage.

3. Submit your webpage to SEO directories. This is the best way to create a quality one way link to your site.

4. Write and submit quality articles to ezine sites. Make your website crawl through internet marketing. Write quality articles and distribute them over the internet. Each submission grants you a one way link.

5. Do a keyword research regularly. The needs and wants of your readers dramatically change everyday. Identify the new keywords that they might use in searching for your products and service. Optimize your webpage by using these keywords naturally.

6. Update your webpage regularly. Keep your website active by posting new content, images, reviews or commentaries whenever appropriate to give you readers a reason to check out your site over and over again.

7. Utilize link popularity. This can easily be done by getting at least 2 quality inbound links to your site. This is the most powerful SEO technique there is in the World Wide Web today so learn its ropes and take advantage of it.