Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Reviewing Kiss Gradation Polishes

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the new Influenster Rose VoxBox I received full of lots of little goodies....all free for me to tryout and review.  The first goodie I want to review is the Kiss Gradation Polishes kit.  It currently comes in four different colors: Film Noir, Exposure, Big Break, and Freeze Frame......or black, brown, blue and pink.  As you can see I received Film Noir.

I have to admit, I was a little intimidated when I saw it and read the instructions.  I'm the type of person that likes to see how things are done first before I try them.  Fortunately, we had some friends visiting and one of them just so happened was looking for a sparkly nail polish to use for a concert they were attending and she was willing to give it a go, while I of course took pictures.

All the bottles are labeled so it is easy to follow what order the polishes go on.  Step 1 is the lightest color in the bunch as well.  Apply two coats.  So far so good, it goes on pretty well.

Wait for the polish to dry before moving on to step 2......whistle a tune while you wait, if you'd like.

When the polish is dry apply the Step 2 polish, but only to the top 1/3 or so of your nail.

My friend did both hands at once on this step.  You are not supposed to let this layer dry.

Apply step 3 polish, which actually contains the glitter, BEFORE step 2 dries.  This is important so that you can get the gradation effect.

Then here is the finished product, I don't think it turned out too bad and my friend was pretty happy with the results.

One word of warning though, by the time you get step 3 applied it takes quite a while for the polish to dry, so make sure you have the time to let it sit or you will mess up your nails.  That was the only complaint my friend had.

Also, I would recommend doing one hand at a time on step 2 to get a better gradation look.

Overall I would give this product 4 stars out of 5.  Now that I've seen it done, I know it's not hard to do. The packaging was a little misleading because I wasn't sure at first if nails were included in the set.  I'm sure this can be done on fake nails as well though.  I also think they have some pretty colors.  All-in-all I would recommend this product, as I do like the effect it gives.

Thank you Influenster and Kiss for giving me the opportunity to try out this product, it's definitely a keeper!

*Disclaimer: I received this product for free from Influenster to review and the opinions expressed are strictly my own*

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Influenster Rose VoxBox

It seems like forever since I've gotten to review anything, but then life has been very hectic for the past 6 months....so it's probably a good thing.

I was fortunate to qualify for Influenster's Rose VoxBox and was looking forward to seeing what was in it that I'll be able to try and review.  Even better was when the box showed up on my doorstep on the day of my birthday.  That was a nice surprise!

With great anticipation I opened my box to see what Influenster had gotten me for my birthday and was pleased to see a nice assortment of things.

Inside the box, waiting for me to try were Dr.Scholl's Cozy Cushion insoles(those should be nice this winter),  Kiss Gradation polishes(for purdy nails), belVita blueberry breakfast bar(yummy, I've been wanting to try these!), Rimmel retro glam mascara(I am almost out, so perfect timing), Vitabath hydrating lotion(it says it's dreamy pink frosting and smells good), and finally a sample of Lindt  Lindor milk chocolate truffle(happy birthday to me!).

So as you can see I've got quite a few things to try......the nails scare me the most as I've never done fake nails unless I've gone to a salon, so that should be interesting!

Keep an eye out for my reviews, as I will be doing those this week.....as long as life allows me!

Thanks again to Influenster and all the companies that sent me these products complimentary for testing purposes.  I don't mind being a guinea pig with these ones!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

I really need something to review!!

I really need something to review so that I can escape if only for a moment.  I need an Influenster VoxBox, a Swaggable product....something....anything!!!!!  I haven't even been sending off for the freebies like I used to.  I need something to get out of this funk.  Some days I think I'm okay and going to make and others it feels like I am just hanging on.

I don't know how she does it.  She, being my friend with the Alzheimer's parent.  I've only been doing it for a few months, she's been doing it for years......YEARS!!!!  She may not realize how strong she is, but I am in AWE of how she handles it and with only her daughters, really, as her support system.

So thank you my friend, you make me smile and help me to be a better caregiver.  My only hope is that I can be a help to you as you have been to me.  I hope that someday we can meet so I can tell you in person!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

It's no fun!

It's no fun knowing there is nothing more you can do.

It's no fun trying your darndest to get someone to eat.

It's no fun watching someone waste away.

It's no fun playing the bad guy.

It's no fun feeling like your hands are tied.

It's no fun not knowing what you could do.

It's no fun walking the fine line of truth and fiction without ending up in the fiction yourself.

It's no fun wanting to scream at the top of your lungs and not being able to.

It's no fun wanting to break into hysterics at the first chance of being alone.

It's no fun, it's just no fun.

But thankfully I take my delight in the Lord because:

Neh 8:10


Phil 4:13

Monday, August 26, 2013

I get it, I really get it!

So, I follow this blog about a woman who is raising her daughters while taking care of her mother who has alzheimers.   She writes about the good, the bad, the funny, the ugly.....everything......and I've learned alot from it and until recently never realized how much I have learned from it.

Today, I made a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for my stepdad for lunch, with a few chips on the side.  You wouldn't think that would be a big deal now would you?  Well, you see that's that where you would be wrong.  Every meal, well almost every meal, is a fine balancing act to get him to eat.  It either looks funny, tastes "like crap", is too sweet,  isn't sweet enough or he just doesn't understand why he has to eat it.  More often than not he will ask why he has to eat whatever is in front of him and more often than not we have to bribe him with a drink(milk or orange juice, his drink of choice. LOL) to get him to eat.

It's like living with a small child, only one you have to give respect to because they are your elder.  It's not a matter of telling him to do something, it's more like reasoning with him.  He's always had a very logical mind and wanted to know how things work.  So with the Dementia and the "forgetfulness" he struggles with the understanding of the why.  Why does he need to eat?  There have been numerous times when he said he wished there was a different way for him to get his food. I've told him the only other way is to get an I.V installed and being force fed.  He isn't too keen on that idea, so that usually gets him to eat.

So what does all that have to do with the blog I follow?  Well, it prepared me (prepares me still) for the road ahead.  While I don't have all the complications that come with Alzheimers, I do have my challenges....like getting him to eat.  But, because of her blog I can relax a little and not stress out about the struggles as much and know that I'm not alone.  Because no one ever likes to feel they are alone.  It gives me courage to speak out myself.

Check out Nancy's Notes on Nothing.  You'll laugh, you'll cry......you'll feel!!!  Enjoy it, I know I do! (She REALLY needs to write a book about this too! hint hint Nancy!)

Are they really that bad?

The other day my family and I were watching some videos on YouTube.  They weren't just  any videos, no they were dash cam videos.  Not just any dash cam videos, but Russian dash cam videos.  If you haven't seen one of these videos yet, you really should.

It all started because I was slightly bored and there really wasn't anything good on tv, well anything worth watching.  I was scrolling my FB feed and came across a post about a Russian hovercraft landing on a beach (click to see the video) and well, one thing led to another and I found myself submerged in compilation after compilation of Russian dash cam videos (again click to watch).

There was turning right from the far left hand lane, turning left from the far right hand lane, running of red lights, confusing lane changes, driving too fast for the conditions and even a horse drawn carriage whose driver was passed out.  There wasn't a video that didn't make me wonder if they actually have to take a test to get their license, or is it handed out to them when they are born.  Numerous times you could hear me saying "Oh, don't do that, don't do that" or "Please tell me you are going to stop".  It got to the point that my family finally had to see what I was watching and then they too joined in with the commentaries, laughter, and complete dumbfoundedness at the escapades shown on the screen.   In fact I was ready to stop and go to bed at one point, but they kept wanting to watch more.

Finally, we could take no more, and there was plenty more, so we called it a night.  Wondering if dash cams were installed on American cars would we have just as many videos like those?  I think we all agreed that there probably would.  Ignorance is bliss.

Friday, August 23, 2013

What's it going to take?

What do you do when you get out of a routine?  How do you get yourself back into a routine, especially when everything around you is changing?  Lately I have felt as if I have been floundering in everything I do, somehow getting by.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not in dire straits or anything.....and is it dire straits or dire straights??? Does it matter that one is the name of a band??  I digress.

Having your parents live with you really messes with your routine.  You are used to things a certain way, a certain smell, a certain sound. You add in two new, well not new :-),  people with their own way, own smell(yes, I went there), own sound and it just throws everything off.   Add in the fact that those people are your parents that you fought to get independence from and one of them needing extra help and well, life just won't ever be the same.  

So where does that leave me?  Changing that's where, learning to be flexible.  It's easy to be flexible when it's something that you know isn't going to last, but being flexible 24/7/365??  Is that something a person can really do?  I'll just say that it's something I'm learning to do.  Am I always successful?? Not by a long shot, but I'm trying and that's what's important.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

It's so bright I've got to wear shades

Earlier this week we were running out of one of the medications that my step-father takes twice a day, so my mom decided to cut it back to once a day to hopefully make them last until the refill arrived.   Turns out that was the best thing we could have done!  Before he was sleeping all the time, could barely finish a sentence and rarely could he feed himself as he was just too tired and basically in a fog.

The first morning waking up after a single dose we saw a difference.  He was sitting up in bed....on his own and was more alert.  By the third day he no longer needed the assistance walking around and was carrying on full conversations, slowly, but he was doing it!  He was even getting himself out of bed in the morning and feeding himself most meals.

Getting ready to go sit by the pool.

He does still get tired after sitting out in the heat, but who doesn't?!  But there is a light to his eyes and a smile on his face.  He's even gotten his sense of humor back.

Will he ever be 100%, I don't think so, but at least he is happy again, no longer in a fog.  A week ago we were looking for the sunshine, this week that is all we are finding!

The happy couple

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Enjoying the Sunshine

2 weeks ago my folks flew out to Arizona from Colorado to move in with my family and I.  It was the hardest on my mother because she has lived in only 2 places her entire life.  The first 23 years of her life were spent in England where she was born.  She moved to America in 1960 and began the next part of her life in the state of Colorado and for all but about 15 years of the next 53 years she lived in a town called Longmont.  My stepfather has lived in several states and even a few countries.  So the move wasn't as hard emotionally for him.

The reason for the move was due to my stepfather's health.  At 85 years of age, he has lived a long, full life.  In fact he regularly went to the gym 3 times a week until October of last year.  He was suddenly tired alot and not motivated to go the gym anymore.  My mother and I figured he had finally realized he was 85 and not 35, unaware that he was suffering from something more.  He seemed fine, as fine as you can at that age when my family and I visited for Christmas.  He joked and laughed and got around fine, just not as much energy as he used to have.

Christmas 2012

He finally went and saw a doctor after the new year and it turned out that he had suffered several mini-strokes which had in turn brought the onset of the early stages of dementia.  After more tests they found that he was actually suffering from vascular dementia, or the hardening of the arteries in the brain, which was causing a disruption in how the brain functioned.  The easy tasks you and I take for granted became harder and harder for him.  My mother went from being a wife to being a caretaker in a matter of months.  From having a husband to having someone that was more like a child or an infant.  At 76 years of age that was more than she could handle by herself.  So, after looking at all the options and the costs involved it was mutually decided they would move out here so that I could help and ease some of her burden.  That decision didn't come easy for her and we wanted to make sure all the options were covered and carefully considered.  After all she was leaving the town she has lived in for over 2/3 of her life.

Thankfully, I think she has begun to settle in and they should be moving into the mini-apartment area we are getting set up for them this weekend.  It has been hardest on my stepfather as change is hard for him to handle with the dementia and can be overwhelming.  There have honestly been a day or two where we we didn't think he would wake up.  But we have had plenty of good days as well.  He likes to sit outside and enjoy the warmth of the Arizona summers....okay maybe not warmth...HEAT.

But the heat does make him more tired:

But he is definitely, not the same man he was 6 months ago.  There are good days and bad days, but we try to focus on the good ones and to encourage him with those good days.

Enjoying a nice warm day in the backyard.

At least he is starting to take an interest in television again. He seems to like the action movies the best.

Watching Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible

So, we get through the rough patches and enjoy the sunshine when it shows up.  We are just believing for more sunshine.......even in the Arizona heat.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

A Prayer For Our Nation

I got this in an email today and thought it was too good NOT to share.

The Prayer of Repentance
This is the text of the original prayer delivered January 23, 1996 by Pastor Joe Wright to the Kansas House of Representatives in Topeka.

Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and seek your direction and guidance.

We know your Word says, "Woe to those who call evil good," but that's exactly what we've done. 
We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and inverted our values.

We confess that we have ridiculed the absolute truth of your Word and called it moral pluralism.

We have worshipped other gods and called it multiculturalism.

We have endorsed perversion and called it an alternative lifestyle.

We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.

We have neglected the needy and called it self-preservation.

We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.

We have killed our unborn and called it choice.

We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.

We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building esteem.

We have abused power and called it political savvy.

We have coveted our neighbors' possessions and called it ambition.

We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression.

We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.

Search us O God and know our hearts today; try us and see if there be some wicked way in us; cleanse us from every sin and set us free.

Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent here by the people of Kansas, and who have been ordained by you, to govern this great state.

Grant them your wisdom to rule and may their decisions direct us to the center of your will. I ask it in the name of your son, the living savior, Jesus Christ.


After receiving thousands of angry emails when asked about it he stated: "I was talking TO God, not them....the whole point was to say we ALL have sins that we need to repent-all of us.....The problem I guess is you're not supposed to get to specific when talking about sin."

While the prayer was given to Kansas, I do believe it could be given to any state, to the nation, and to the world.

Ivory® 2-IN-1 Hair & Body Wash Review

I was fortunate to receive another VoxBox from Influenster.  This time I got the Ivory 2-IN-1 hair and body wash along with coupons:

I have very, very, VERY thick hair that tangles easily, so I HAVE to use conditioner on my hair or any hope of getting a comb through it is out the window.  So I've never tried a Hair & Body wash.  Now my husband and two sons use Hair & Body wash all the time and actually prefer it.  But I decided I would gladly "take one for the Influenster team" and give the Ivory 2-IN-1  Hair & Body Wash.  Worst case scenario I would just cut all my hair off and start fresh.....as a hairdresser once told my son, "Don't worry, it grow back!".

I had my family try it first, as I was still a little leery.  My sons said it was fine, got them clean and it didn't smell too fru-fru so they would use it again. Score 1 for Ivory!  Next was the hubby, he's always leery of trying these free samples I get.  He has something he likes so he stays with it and doesn't deviate unless there is no other option, but he was a trooper.   And being the guy he is, his review was: It lathered, got me clean, seems to work.  Score 2 for Ivory!

The time had come, I could stall no longer.  I had used my family as guinea pigs, it was only fair I become one too, after all I was the one that signed up for this.  I was surprised, and pleased, to see that it had conditioner built in, so my trepidation lifted and I put the scissors away.  It lathered up nicely and did a nice job of giving me the squeaky clean hair that I like.  I also liked the fact that it rinsed out easily from my loofa as I find that with most body washes it takes awhile.  Part 1 of the test - passed.  On to part 2.  After towel-drying my hair I began the process of combing out the rats nest that resided on top of my head.  Honestly, I didn't have a lot of hope that it would be an easy process, even though it said it had conditioner.  I was pleasantly surprised to find out that for the most part it was an easy process.  It wasn't as easy as with a regular shampoo/conditioner combo, but it really wasn't that bad either.  

So, imagine going from this:

To this:

That is definitely something I like the idea of.  All in all, I do like the Ivory 2-IN-1 hair & body wash and would buy it for my family.  I do wish it had a scent, maybe a his and a hers, but this is a good neutral scent that both men and women could use.  So thank you Influenster and Ivory for giving me the chance to try this product.

*Disclaimer: I received this product for free from Influenster to review and the opinions expressed are strictly my own

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Mail Call!

It's been awhile since I've shared some of the things I've gotten in the mail....FOR FREE!  So, I thought I would just make a quick post to show you what you have been missing out on!

First, I got this nice surprise in the mail:

I got that in a spin to win game on Facebook.  It's a cheese cutting board and as you can see it spins open to show the cutting utensils that are housed inside.  It really is a nice one.  I had actually forgotten all about this prize until I opened the box it came in.

On another day I got these in the mail:

I got the three nail polishes(Nicole by Opi) from the Kellogg's Rewards program.  I just had to find 8 specially marked boxes with codes or find them in the emails they sent.  There is also a coupon for a free Campbells Slow Kettle style soup.  I got that from an offer they were doing on Twitter.  Lastly are the Frosting Creations I received from Duncan Hines.  That was a game they had on their website around Easter where you had to find an Easter Egg before they ran out.  I'm looking forward to trying those out, but I'm going to need to make some cupcakes or cookies or cake or something!!! Oh Darn!!!

Today in the mail I received these:

There is a $5 gift card to McDonalds and 2 coupons for free Blue Bunny Ice Cream along with an ice cream scoop.  Both of those were "perks" I got from a site called Klout and qualified for because of my "social influence".  I think they know more than me, but I'm not going to argue with them!  Also, there is a sample of Wafu Japanese vinaigrette and Hail Merry salt 'n black pepper sunflower seeds from Swaggable.  That is a site I signed up for where they send you a small sample to try and review.  Not big samples by any means, but good enough for one person and so far have all been good enough for me.

Lastly, the one I want to share is the one I like the most, because it say so much without any words:

"I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you."  Gen 12:3 NIV

So anytime you see a contest or giveaway on Facebook or Twitter enter it!  What have you got to lose and you just might win or get something.....FOR FREE!!!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

What part of No do you not understand??`

A couple of weeks ago I received a call on my cellphone from a number I didn't recognize.  Usually I don't answer those, but I was bored, so thought why not.  Turns out it was some company trying to sell me a remodeling estimate because somewhere I had signed up for it.  Now, I may very well have done so, but I NEVER give out my cellphone number, so I was skeptical to begin with.  Then they gave me a p.o. box address and it was then that the red lights went off.  I politely said no thank you, I'm not interested and ended the call.

Now, most normal people would think that would be the end of it...right??  Well, you would be mistaken with this company.  Not only did they call me back, they called me back every day, sometimes twice a day, for a week.  Oh, but they were sneaky, because they used a different number every time and when I didn't answer they would call back on yet another number.  The other problem I had was they didn't speak very good English, so that was yet another strike against them.

Every time they called I went through the same speil: I'm not interested, I didn't sign up, remove my number and stop calling me.  It was frustrating and towards the end of the week I didn't even wait for them to say anything, as soon as they said my name I gave them the speil, the volume level of my voice raising each time.  Now,  I'm not a confrontational person but they were trying my last nerve!

After a week of no calls I figured I had finally gotten through to them.....I would be wrong.  I got one last call trying to sell me a remodeling estimate and I lost it.  I all but yelled at them the same speil and emphasized that they were calling my cellphone and using up my minutes.  I didn't even let the poor person speak, as soon as he asked my name with that now VERY familiar accent I interrupted him and when I was done hung up.  I guess they finally got the message because it's been several weeks now and no more calls.

But if they do call back.....I'm ready for them!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Aveeno Positively Radiant Intensive Night Cream Review

I was picked for another VoxBox from Influenster a few weeks ago, this time it was for Aveeno's Positively Radiant Intensive Night Cream(phew, that's mouthful!).  Now I'm pretty much a less is more kind of gal and was never raised as a girly-girl, so all these beauty products I get to try for free are fun for me to try.

The only thing I knew about night cream is what I saw on tv. You know the shows where they lather it on their face and their spouse is afraid of them.  And I'll admit when I first opened the box and saw what was included that thought hadn't changed.  Included in the box was a sleep mask along with the cream.  I just hoped I wouldn't get the gunk all over my pillow case.

Their claim is that it;

Contains a proven concentration of ACTIVE NATURALS® Total Soy Complex boosted with vitamin B3 to help visibly diminish the appearance of dullness, blotchiness and brown spots • Oil-free, hydrating formula penetrates deep within skin’s surface while you sleep revealing an even, more radiant complexion • In a clinical study, women saw improvement in tone and discoloration • Gentle enough for everyday use

Fearlessly, I jumped in and scrubbed my face clean, dried it and then began applying the night cream.  The first thing I noticed.....a little goes a long way....but it does rub in.  It's not a heavy cream at all.  The other thing I noticed....a slight stinging sensation.  That part I wasn't expecting.  It didn't hurt, just stung and it didn't last for long, only a few minutes at best.  It did give me a slight rash from stinging sensation, but it too went away in about 5 mins. 

Once the cream was absorbed, my face did feel smooth, a little greasy, but not bad.  I did notice too that  it has made my skin softer and less dry which was a definite plus.  Another thing I noticed, and I don't know if it's due to the Aveeno or not, but I had recently gotten a mole on the end of my nose.  

I know, I know I shouldn't admit to that, but I have my reason.  Anyway I noticed that after a week the mole had become less visible, it's still there, but at least I don't look like the old hag from the commercials:

Wonder if it would work on the rest of my moles?!?!  Anyway, I have to say that overall I liked the product and plan to continue using it because I really did like the way my face felt in the morning.  Also, the dark spots that were starting to appear due to age are actually fading a little.

For fun I made a video on my phone on the vine app showing my nightly routine.  You can check it out here:  My Nightly routine  It's the first time I used that app, but I had fun making it.  

So, my dream....my radiant dream for 2013 would be that this cream would actually be good at removing moles, as well as dark spots and wrinkles, and not just ones on the end of noses!!

*Disclaimer: I received this product free from Influenster to review and the opinions are strictly my own*

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Now THAT is customer service!

I enter for a lot of freebies, giveaways, contests, etc on Facebook....just ask my friends.  Recently,mi-March, I came across a giveaway by Johnsonville Sausage for a Cajun Celebration Kit.  It was  only supposed to be available for the first 1,000 entries.  Honestly, I don't remember seeing that and I thought it was 10,000, but I could easily have been wrong.  The only problem was that people were being allowed to enter WELL past the first 1,000.  They actually had over 10,000 entries!  I'm sure you can see the quandary they were in.

Now at first they said that they only had enough for the original 1,000 kits and they were sorry.  Of course, I'm sure you can understand the uproar that ensued.  After all, you don't want to mess with people and their freebies!  Needless to say, it wasn't too long before they said they would send something to everyone, but couldn't do anything about the original number of kits.  The masses were appeased.

So the time passed and I honestly forgot all about it until a package showed up on my porch yesterday from them.  Now honestly, I was expecting maybe a coupon or two and I would have been more than happy with that.  Surprisingly, it was more, MUCH more.  Just look at what they sent:

Like I said, I was surprised to see all that was in there.  In their letter they addressed the problem and as they put it they "strive to do the right thing by all our customers who are important to us" and worked with their partners to supply the additional kits.  Did we get the same kit? No, but again according to their letter this one "is of equal value........ and nearly identical" to the first 1,000 kits.

As you can tell I got more than just 1 or 2 coupons.  There is a bottle of Louisiana Hot Sauce, a can of Red Gold tomatoes/green chilies, two $1 off coupons for Klondike Brands potatoes, $1.00 off Pompeian olive oil, BOGO coupon for Gourmet Garden Herbs & Spices,  FREE Uncle Ben's Ready Rice coupon, FREE Red Gold tomato product coupon, FREE package of Johnsonville Premium Cooking Sausage coupon, and recipe cards for 1)Hearty Italian Salad, 2)Cheesy Ham/Tomato Rice Supper, 3) Orange Scented Pork/Veggie Stew and 4)Red Gold Cajun Queso Dip.  

But wait there's more:

3 Mardi Gras Masks(and not everyone got the same ones!) and colored beads, because what is Mardi Gras without the beads!

5 recipe booklets to share with friends

A measuring spoon

A shopping list

Fridge Magnet

And last but certainly NOT least:

A nice apron

to cook in


A nice size tote bag

to carry everything in
Not pictured: A cutting board.  I was so excited to see everything I just put it right in the dishwasher so I can start using it!

So, I'm sure you can see why I was PLEASANTLY surprised by this.  It is VERY rare to find customer service that goes above and beyond as Johnsonville did.  I liked them and their products before this and this has only enforced my positive opinion about them.  I look forward to using the coupons and cooking up a delicious meal.

A great big shout out to the Johnsonville company and their employees!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

It's funny how a blog works.

My husband read my blog today and he said something to me that I didn't realize I was doing.  He told me I'm a completely different person in this blog than in real life, that I was more transparent and open.  The funny thing is I didn't think that I was because I know there is still so much more that I don't write about.  There is still that part of me that wonders what people would think if I really wrote what I was thinking and/or going through.  Would they still love me??  Accept me???  Like me??

What would they think if they found out that I'm not this happy go lucky person that always has a smile on her face or a positive spin to put on things?  That there are days I just want to scream and not participate anymore, just run away.  But I don't feel like I have that right to do that.   I'm not taking care of a parent/child that can't take care of themselves.   I'm not a single mom trying to start my life over with a passel of kids to take care of.  I don't even have a passel of kids TO take care of.  I don't have to worry about what bills I can pay or where my next meal is coming from. I'm fairly healthy, could lose some weight...okay more than just some I suppose.   My problems, and I don't even know that they are problems, seem so petty compared to just about everybody else.  What right do I have to complain?

But you see there is one thing I have come to learn and that is that we all struggle one way or another.  We all have good days and bad days.  But I've also learned that fretting over the bad things doesn't make them any better.  It doesn't change anything either.  The only thing that does is a change of attitude, a change of perspective.  Now don't get me wrong, changing the attitude or perspective is not an easy thing to do.  It's a heck of alot easier not to.   But you see if we don't then we may find that one day we may not be able to.

That doesn't mean I don't, or won't, still struggle with that smile. And it doesn't mean I still won't have those days I want to scream or to not participate or run away.  I'm sure there will still be plenty of those days ahead of me.  I'm just going to try to learn how to deal with them better.

It's funny how a blog works.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Time to dust off the blog again

Wow! Has it really been over a month since I last blogged?  Where has the time gone?  Actually it has more to do with me just not being in the mood.  Really, I haven't been in the mood to do much the last month.  I've just really been in a funk more than anything else.  What I've been lacking is motivation.  The only thing that I've been motivated to do the last month is to make my goals at my earning sites, but that's it.  I've had reviews to do for products, but couldn't even get myself to do those and those are usually fairly easy to do.

But I've decided to pull myself up out of this funk and get motivated.  So what did I do you ask?  Well, I made some jewelry.  I got a bunch of new stuff and finally last week organized it so that I could actually make something with it.  So that's what I did.  Okay, I did cheat a little bit.  I also recently signed up for a bead kit club of the month, where they send you a new kit with ideas to make.  I decided to make it easy on myself and do one of those because I didn't want to lose what motivation I had.   The best part about this club is that there are videos online in case you have any problems.  Not the best video, but it does help.....especially when it's been awhile since you've made anything....like me.  So, you ready to see what I made???  Here it is,  turquois anyone:

Not bad if I do say so myself.  However I did realize that I used the wrong size bead on the earrings after I finished them, but I'm not taking them apart to fix it.  So because of that I had to then adapt the necklace and bracelet for the change.  Overall, I'm pretty happy with how they turned out...what do you think?

Monday, February 18, 2013

My newest guilty pleasure: The Taste, Tuesday at 8|7c on ABC

I have found a new guilty pleasure reality show to watch.  It's called The Taste and can be seen on Tuesday nights on ABC.  It began with chefs, professional and amateur, competing for 16 spots.  They all had to make a dish they felt would "wow" the 4 judges and get them on one of the teams of 4 and they had to do it with one spoonful....one taste.  The judges, Nigella Lawson, Anthony Bourdain, Brian Malarkey and Ludo Lefebvre, get to leave any preconceived notions and expectations they might have about a person's experience, or lack thereof, because they know nothing about the contestants except for the food put in front of them.

It was fun to watch them in the audition episodes as they tried to guess whether it was a professional chef or an amateur that just cooks really well.  They would then cast a yes or no vote based only on what they tasted.  More often than not they could pick the professionals from the amateurs, but that didn't mean the professionals had it easy and were an automatic shoe-in.  In fact in the first audition episode I think more amateurs went through than professionals.  Often times the judges would regret the "no" vote that they cast, realizing that the more they thought about the taste the more they liked it.  Unfortunately, that isn't much of a consolation if you weren't chosen for a team.  When all the auditions were done, they were left with 16 chefs.....4 for each judge.

As the competition goes on they will compete, both as teams and individuals, in different challenges.  As always the tastes are blind tastes.  As the viewer, we know who is making what dish, but the judges never do and it is fun to watch the judges banter back and forth with each other over why they like or don't like a dish and hoping that the dish they don't like, and ultimately send home, doesn't belong to one of their own team members.  So it's not only a competition among the 16 contestants, it's also a competition between the judges.

Another part I find funny, and this is probably just me, is watching them doing the taste.  All the dishes are served on the same size spoon, which looks about the size of a tablespoon, a fancy looking one.  Sometimes those "tastes" are quite the mouthful not only for the guys, but also for the only woman judge, Nigella.  But you can always tell when Nigella likes a dish because she will lick the spoon, like she is wanting more.

If you haven't had a chance to catch an episode go to http://abc.tv/Z3jimp to catch the latest episode and I'll think you'll find you will make it one of your guilty pleasures as well.  Don't forget to tune in every Tuesday night on ABC at 8/7c pm.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Casualties of War

As I've posted before I have a problem with rats here in Arizona.  They've gotten the wires on my car twice, my husbands once and now my son's car once as well just in the past year alone.  So we bit the bullet and got a pest service to help "control" the situation as best as possible.   The main problem we have is that we have 3 strikes against us:

     1)We live next to a vacant lot
     2) We live across from a wash(where the water goes during a monsoon to avoid flooding, but is filled with trees and bushes and critters!)
     3) We have an unpaved driveway

So, it's almost like fighting a losing battle.  I'm more than willing to leave the critters be....as long as they leave our stuff alone.  But after two airconditioning units and three cars, the gloves have come off and it's now war.  There is no more Mrs. Nice Guy or would that be Gal? Anyway.......

The last time the pest guy came out (last week) he gave us a rat trap, only one as that is all he had at the time.  So last night I put some peanut butter in the little hole, place the trap under my car and hoped to find a warning sign for other the varmints in the area the next day.  When I checked the trap this morning I saw that is had been tripped, but there was nothing in it. So I left it there when I had to leave this morning figuring I would take care of it when I came back.  But as I backed out of the driveway I noticed that I in fact had "gotten" something......but it wasn't a rat or a mouse....it was a bunny!!!  I killed a bunny!!!  I'm a bunny-killer!!!   The bunny looked so peaceful just lying there, which gave me hope that it didn't suffer.  Needless to say this time I put the trap back, but put it in my engine, so as long as the bunnies stay away from my engine they should be okay. 

Oh and before you say anything, we are keeping mothballs in our engines, alternating with drying sheets. I'll also be investing in some Peppermint oils and rubber snakes.  Yes, I said rubber snakes...rats don't like snakes and will stay away or so they say.  I'll also get a couple more traps for the other cars.  The only step after that is to some how rig my car so they get "shocked" if they touch it or hire a hit man!  I tried to play nice with them, but no more.

I am sorry my bunny friend that you had to be a casualty of war.  Blame the rats, they started it, I just have to finish it.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Palmolive Fresh Infusions Review

I received another Voxbox from Influenster last week to try out and review.  This time is was for Palmolive Fresh Infusions Dish Soap. Currently it comes in 3 different scents: Lime Basil, Lemon Thyme and Ginger White Tea.

I have a dishwasher, so that would lead most people to think that I don't wash my dishes by hand and they would be wrong.  You see I live in the desert, in Arizona, and the water here is well....terrible.  It has alot of calcium in it, alot!  So I have to clean my dishes before putting them in my dishwasher. 

When my box arrived I was pleasantly surprised to find not 1 bottle, but 3 bottles of Palmolive.  One of each scent along with 5 coupons to share with friends and family.  I did have the flu when I first opened the box, so I couldn't smell anything when I popped their lids.  I was a little disappointed because I had hoped that I would be able to.

I had heard from others that the Lime Basil was the strongest scent, so I waited a couple of days and then filled up my sink with some soapy water and got to washing.  I have to say I agree, the Lime Basil is pretty strong.  If you like the scent of spices, you will probably like this one, me...not so much.  It was a bit overpowering for me and not pleasant.  It did do a good job of cleaning the dishes and a small amount went a long way.

A few days later I tried the Lemon Thyme.  The scent reminded me of the scent of Lemon Pledge and I really liked it.  It made me feel like things were clean with that scent.  It was not overpowering at all and I found myself enjoying doing the dishes....just don't tell my family! As with the Lime Basil, a small amount goes a long way.

Next it was time to try the Ginger White Tea.  I had left this one for last because I heard that this was a favorite scent for a lot of people.  It does have a nice scent and it's not overpowering at all.  I liked it, but I would consider it my 2nd favorite out of the bunch.  As before, a small amount goes a long way.

Now, I know if you are like me you would be concerned that the scent would stay on the dishes and ruin your food, but that is not the case at all. (I even smelled a dish to make sure!) It didn't have a greasy or slimy feel either while washing that you can sometimes get with a dish soap and it did make my hands feel smooth when I was done, which when you have hard water like we do here is nice.  Also, the shape and feel of the bottle is nice and easy to grasp when you have wet hands, so there is not much of a chance of dropping it in a sink full of soapy water and getting splashed.

All three scents did a great job in getting the dishes clean and make your kitchen smell nice.  I would definitely recommend these.  So thank you Influenster and Palmolive for giving me a chance to try these out.  Now I have a reason to look forward to doing the dishes.

*Disclaimer: I received these for free to review from Influenster and Palmolive.  All opinions are my own and factual*