7-time lottery winner shares tips for winning Powerball

Published: Saturday, January 09, 2016 @ 7:58 AM
Updated: Saturday, January 09, 2016 @ 12:19 PM

Tips on Winning the Lottery

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Powerball fever around the U.S. is almost as high as the record $900 million grand prize that may be claimed Saturday night.

Believe it or not, the chances of getting struck by lightning, dating a supermodel or becoming president (among other feats) are all more likely than winning Saturday's grand prize. 

Those are all more likely unless you are Richard Lustig, of course, who has won seven lottery grand prizes and written a book about his trial and error in learning how to do so.

Forbes spoke to Lustig ahead of tonight's drawing and procured some of his expert advice on how to win the jackpot.

>> Powerball overview: How to play, odds, payouts, etc.

1. Avoid "quick-pick"

The "quick-pick" method works in number sets, which means every number doesn't have the same amount of luck one would perceive. "Every time you buy a quick pick, you get a different set of numbers; therefore, your odds are always going to be at their worst in that particular game," Lustig said to Forbes about the Powerball. 

2. Use the entire board

Many people use birthdates and anniversaries when filling out their cards. While your loved ones bring you priceless joy, using their special days to bring home the jackpot will likely mean you end up splitting the prize with 20-40 people. Instead of just playing numbers 1-31, use all the numbers available. "If you spread the numbers out across the whole track, you’ll either be the only winner or will split it with only one or two people,” Lustig says.

>> Why you don't want to win the Powerball jackpot

3. Stick with your instincts

Lustig has a specific way to finding the numbers you feel most comfortable with in his book, but ultimately, once you pick the group that you think will work, stick with it. “Remember, a set of numbers wins the grand prize, not individual numbers,” Lustig says. If playing multiple cards, have some variety in the grouping of numbers chosen to maximize your odds.

4. Be consistent

Simply put: If you want to win a particular game, follow past and future drawings to get the hang of it.

5. Don't get carried away

While winning $900 million would ultimately grant you and your loved ones financial security, it's important not to spend money you can't afford to lose (i.e.: groceries, rent, etc.) on lottery tickets. If you can only buy one ticket or even 10 but not 100, that's OK. "Set a budget of what you’re going to spend. Do not get caught up in what’s called 'lottery fever,' Lustig says. Spend what you can comfortably afford to on lottery tickets and no more.

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14-year-old accidentally shot, killed by older sister

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 2:53 PM



Pixabay
(Pixabay)

A 14-year-old Indiana boy was accidentally shot and killed by his older sister Sunday as they and their father prepared to go target shooting.

Rex William Pruett was shot at his father’s home in Campbellsburg, a small Indiana town located about 50 miles northwest of Louisville, Kentucky. Rex, a seventh-grader at Orleans Junior-Senior High School, died a short time after his father rushed him to a hospital. 

“The father received a phone call and, while he was on the phone, the daughter, in what appeared to be unintentional, shot her brother with a .22-caliber revolver,” Indiana State Police spokesman Chad Dick told The Times-Mail in Bedford.

Officials at the boy’s school, where his sister is a ninth-grader, said that extra counselors were brought in Monday to help students cope with the tragedy. Police investigators waited to release the boy’s name until those measures were in place. 

“The first-period teachers had a written statement to read about the incident and then, for any students that need additional help, we have counselors standing by,” Orleans Community Schools Superintendent Gary McClintic told the newspaper.  

Chris Stevens, principal of the siblings’ school, showed a news crew from WAVE 3 News in Louisville Rex’s locker, which was adorned Monday with photos and letters from his classmates. 

“This does remind you quite a bit of Rex,” Stevens told the station. “There were a lot of tears and a lot of smiles today.”

Stevens said that faculty members and administrators have made it clear to students that the shooting was accidental. When Rex’s sister returns to class, they will offer her their support, he said. 

Family and friends also offered the girl their support on Facebook, where she described her younger brother as “such a sweet little boy.”

“Much love, Rexy, much love. We will all keep you in our hearts,” the girl wrote. 

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Stevens described the rural community as one in which guns are part of everyday life.

“In our elementary, at the sixth-grade level, we have a gun safety course that all of our students are allowed to go through,” Stevens told the news station

McClintic, who said he taught Rex’s father when he was a teacher, described the boy’s family as a good one that had been involved with Orleans’ public schools for multiple generations. 

“It’s hard on the community, just as much as it is on the school,” McClintic told The Times-Mail

Johnny Henderson, pastor of Lost River Missionary Baptist Church in Claysville, said that Rex and his family attended services there the morning of the shooting.

“He was an outstanding young man,” Henderson said.

The pastor said the Pruett family needs support, not criticism over the shooting.

“They need support and people to pray for them for peace and comfort,” Henderson said. “They still have a hard time going forward. They still have a funeral to go to.

“They are going to be living without this young man.”

How an Ohio woman lost 125 pounds

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 5:39 PM

When Christina Littleton weighed 284 pounds she decided enough was enough. A little over two years later she was lean and toned. (Photo: daytondailynews.com)
When Christina Littleton weighed 284 pounds she decided enough was enough. A little over two years later she was lean and toned. (Photo: daytondailynews.com)

New Year’s resolutions can begin in any month of the year. August 2015 is when a success story started for Springboro resident Christina Littleton.

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Although athletic and thin during her younger years, her father’s passing from pancreatic cancer in 1999 left her reeling emotionally. She gained a lot of weight, met her husband, Jason, got married, got pregnant, and gained more weight.

“The summer of 2015 I was having too much fun, and eating too much. In August I looked at myself in the mirror and thought, ‘Who is this person?’” said Littleton, who weighed 284 pounds at that point. “I was determined that I was going to do this, so I took a picture of myself.”

The wedding photographer had been going to Weight Watchers on and off before, but this time she stuck with her weekly meetings at the Covenant Presbyterian Church in Springboro. One and a half years later, she was down 115 pounds. It took her almost eight months to lose that last 10 pounds. The 5-foot-6-inch woman is now a fit and toned 159.

“Your main goal is to go in and lose weight. But there are things that you gain,” said Littleton, whose daughter, Ava, will be 11 next month. “Going through the journey I’ve learned to change my mindset. Before, I would secretly pick myself apart in the mirror. I didn’t want Ava to see that.”

She’d been very active when she was younger, with tennis, softball and running.

“So now I’m back to that side of me; being competitive. Developing more confidence in myself and taking more risks in my personal and professional life,” said Littleton, 40. “I completed a half-marathon in Nashville last year.”

She is teaching one weekly spin class, which will soon become two at the Coffman YMCA. In honor of her father, she participates in the 5K PanCan Run (fighting to end pancreatic cancer) in Kettering every year. She also runs on the treadmill.

The weight loss has an added bonus of giving her more energy to last through those long days with her camera equipment.

“I would be on my feet for hours; 12 hours from start to finish to photograph a wedding. I remember taking 800 milligrams of Motrin, and then again in the middle of the day just to get through it,” Littleton said. “And now I work out before a wedding.”

One of the reasons she has succeeded this time is her husband, who has always been supportive.

“There are so many programs out there, and just find one that works for you. Just create new habits,” Littleton said. “Instead of reaching for a bag of chips, you reach for an apple instead. You need to re-train your brain in the way you eat.”

In addition to her running and spin classes, she varies her workout sessions. She lifts weights, powers through a TRX core-based workout and does PiYo, a fast-paced yoga.

Lauren MacDonald, the instructor of the Weight Watcher’s group that Littleton has been attending, has a story of her own. She lost 110 pounds on the program, reaching her goal in 2012. She had some good words to say about her star pupil.

“She has done a amazing job. She’s stuck with it. A lot of people come and go, but she’s very motivational and inspirational to others,” said MacDonald, a Miamisburg resident who also works as a teacher.

MacDonald’s classes run twice a week at the Covenant Presbyterian Church at 415 N. Main St., Springboro. There’s an 8 a.m. meeting on Saturdays and a 6 p.m. meeting on Mondays.

PE teacher strips naked, chases students around playground

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 11:49 AM

Police - Students on Playground Run Away From Naked PE Teacher

Parents at a Los Angeles elementary school are furious amid allegations that a physical education teacher stripped naked and chased a group of students around the school playground.

CBS Los Angeles reported that a construction worker passing by Carthay Center Elementary School on Friday captured the aftermath of the incident. The video, obtained by the news station, shows the unidentified teacher standing on the playground and putting his pants back on.

Click here to see the video.

Parents who spoke to the CBS affiliate were livid.

“He was supposed to be helping them learn PE, run around and have fun,” one parent said. “But he undressed and started chasing the kids while he was naked. Then the kids ducked and dodged, ran into some of the classrooms and got safe haven that way.”

“All of the kids saw his private parts,” another parent said. “Very embarrassing, very upset.”

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Officials with the Los Angeles Unified School District notified parents of the incident with a letter and a robocall, CBS reported

“An individual began behaving in an unusual way, prompting us to contact law enforcement,” the letter stated. “As a safety precaution, our school went on a brief lockdown while officers responded and took the individual into custody.”

District officials declined to comment further, but they did confirm that the man, a contract worker, had permission to be on the school campus, the news station said. Mental health counselors were made available to the students who witnessed the incident. 

School resource officers are investigating the man’s actions, CBS said. 

Carthay, one of more than 1,100 schools in the Los Angeles USD, is a magnet school devoted to the teaching of environmental studies. The school district is the second-largest in the United States. 

Trump says new tariffs will spur jobs, won’t spark a trade war

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 9:20 AM

After months of tough talk about defending U.S. businesses against cheap imported goods, President Donald Trump on Tuesday officially signed off on new tariffs on imports of certain washing machines and solar power equipment, following through on his campaign vows to make trade work better for American companies.

“Our companies will not be taken advantage of anymore,” the President told reporters at the White House, repeating a common theme from his campaign for the White House.

In a signing ceremony in the Oval Office, the President officially accepted a recommendation from the U.S. International Trade Commission, which investigated specific trade complaints about washing machines and solar panels, and recommended higher tariffs for four years.

“There won’t be a trade war,” the President predicted, brushing off warnings about his tariff decisions possibly sparking retaliatory measures by China and South Korea.

Under the plan, there will be an immediate 30 percent tariff on most imports of solar energy components, as well as a 50 percent tariff on larger imported washing machines.

“My administration is committed to defending American companies, and they’ve been very badly hurt, from harmful import surges that threaten the livelihood of their workers,” the President said.

“We’re bringing business back to the United States for the first time in many, many years,” he added.

The President’s tariff move came as American negotiators began a new week of talks Tuesday in Montreal on changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), with officials from Canada and Mexico working on possible changes to that trade deal.

Mr. Trump has made clear he wants the details of NAFTA to be rewired, as he charges that U.S. businesses are being treated unfairly in some trade areas, threatening at times to tear up the deal.

The immediate reaction in Congress and the business community to the President’s tariff decision was mixed, as some lawmakers said the moves could cost jobs and hurt consumers – the exact opposite of Mr. Trump’s argument.

“Here’s something Republicans used to understand,” said Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE). “Tariffs are taxes on families.”

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) echoed Sasse, saying the move was “nothing more than a tax on consumers.”

“This is shortsighted and will cost American jobs,” said Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC), who said solar power industry jobs were now at stake in his home state, as that industry denounced the move.

But for others, the higher tariffs will help preserve jobs, threatened by less inexpensive imports.

“This is welcome news for the thousands of Whirlpool workers in Clyde, Ohio, whose jobs have been threatened by a surge of cheap washers,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH).

“Whirlpool has had to fight a series of cases against companies who would rather cheat than compete,” said Brown’s colleague, Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH).