PPP Sponsored: Ringer Lawn Restore

While I rent my apartment, I do have an opinion of lawn care and how it impacts the environment. I also dream of some day owning a small farm, particularly because I’d love to grow and harvest my own organic produce. So when I read this opportunity to write about Ringer Lawn Restore, I was quite excited. Seeing as how I’ve got two small children with a third on the way and absolutely adore animals, I’m adverse to putting down toxic chemicals on the ground in order to promote grass growth and deter weeds. However, with an organic fertilizer I would feel much safer knowing that my kids and pets could frolic outside without worries of harmful chemicals interfering with their nervous systems. Biologically speaking, the same chemicals that we use to kill bugs and weeds can harm our neuro-pathways as well – leading to a host of negative health issues. I hope to someday give Ringer Lawn Restore a try as part of a green lifestyle.


Winding Down Another Week

After finding a couple of opportunities worth a nice amount (see the below two posts), I figure I should add a substantial post since I’ve been a little lax in my writing lately. I don’t intend to add to my recent blog series this afternoon — I’m feeling a bit low on energy and short on time. Instead, I think I’ll opt for the tamer posts I usually write. Get ready for more weather!

Earlier this week, we had some pleasant “open window” weather, which essentially means it was comfortable enough to open the windows and let in fresh air. We generally follow the 68-78°F guidelines, so “comfort” to us denotes temperatures outside allowing our internal home temperature to fall within that range. Yesterday, we started to break 80°F, meaning it’s getting hotter. Currently, we’re sporting 88°F — where did all my lovely “open window” weather go? Sadly, this is only going to continue as it’s the end of April in North Central Florida. We’re lucky we still got those temperate days as late into the month as we are. Now, we’ll have 90+°F weather to look forward to, along with daily thundershowers and hurricane season. In fact, we have a little over a month to begin compiling our hurricane kit. I wonder when the canned food sales will start this year.


PPP Sponsored: My Fragrance Room

In keeping with my love for Elizabeth Arden’s Sunflowers perfume, I’ve elected to review another fragrance website. This time, the website is fully operational and stocked with hundreds of scents – including my absolute favorite. The site itself is also inviting. The layout is crisp and easy-to-read, the menu and links are straight-forward, and the prices look reasonable. They also offer men’s fragrance, make-up, candles, skincare products, hair care products, and aromatherapy items. My Fragrance Room looks like a very good option for purchasing your favorite perfumes and colognes, as well as other beauty products. Check them out to see for yourself.


PPP Sponsored: Capezio Dancewear

Throughout my childhood, I enjoyed dancing – tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical, etc. Given that biographical bit, I can proudly endorse Capezio dancewear. Capezio is a name I’m familiar with because they make quality dance shoes. Many of my ballet slippers and tap shoes were made by Capezio. They even make these extremely awesome “dansneakers,” which have the appearance of a sneaker with the flexibility of dancing footwear. Also, they offer specialty shoe making, “Special Make-Up.” Considering how important fit is when it comes to dancing footwear, I think this is an excellent option. I personally have small, wide feet, so it was hard trying to find a good first pointe shoe.

Of course, you can purchase more than shoes from Capezio. You’ll be able to find leotards, warm-up wear (if I could, I would own several pairs of adorable leg warmers), totes and duffle bags, and accessories. You’ll also be able to find Capezio products stocked in dance stores near you because Capezio is such a well-known dancewear brand name. I encourage you to check them out.


Lost in Translation

Yesterday was free scoop day at Ben & Jerry’s. My daughter had a doctor’s appointment (read: a shot), so we planned on getting ice cream regardless of her reaction — she either needed a reward or a consolation prize. It turned out to be a reward, so off we went for her reward. I had decided beforehand that I wanted to get a cone of Phish Food ice cream. Phish Food is reminiscent of rocky road — chocolate ice cream, swirls of marshmallow and caramel, and fish-shaped pieces of chocolate. I really have no idea what the band Phish sounds like, and I really don’t think I’ll really ever take the time to try. However, I really love that flavor of ice cream.

My daughter and I got to the shop just in time — we had virtually no wait. I ordered my Phish Food cone and her strawberry cheesecake scoop in a cup. As the woman handed me my cone, I immediately noticed she got the order wrong. For starters, the ice cream was definitely not chocolate. Not wanting to seem ungrateful on FREE scoop day, I accepted the mix-up, feeling relieved that they at least got my daughter’s ice cream correct. I tasted my ice cream and realized a very cruel trick had been played on me — it was oatmeal crisp. Excuse me? I have a box of oatmeal crisp. It’s a cereal in my cabinet. I eat it for breakfast. When I eat ice cream, under no circumstances do I identify the frozen treat as a “healthy” item. We sat down, and I reluctantly began the odious task of eating said ice cream. I helped my daughter spoon mouthfuls of her luxurious strawberry cheesecake ice cream in between horror sessions with my free cone. Thankfully, it included chocolate chips to make up for the non-chocolate-y flavor I had been cursed with.

When we left, the line stretched out the door. My daughter was content with her free scoop, and I discovered that ice cream can come in awful flavors.


Nobody Puts Baby in A Corner

I’ll let you in on a little smidgen of information about myself. I’m 25 years old. By the standards set forth in the United States of America, I’m old enough to fight and die for my country. I’m old enough to buy cigarettes if I so choose. I’m old enough to buy alcohol. I’m old enough to rent a car. I’m old enough to get a cheaper rent on my car insurance because I’m no longer in the 16-24 age bracket. I’m old enough to choose to have my tubes tied or my reproductive tract totally removed. Do you know what I’m not permitted to do? I’m not permitted to choose the location, provider, and method in which to give birth. It’s quite interesting, actually. In this country, a woman has the right to “choose.” I have the right to choose birth control. I have the right to choose an abortion. I have the right to choose adoption. I have the right to choose Plan B. Yet I do not have the right to choose how my baby enters this world. What’s wrong with this picture? We are commended for being “brave” to undergo risky procedures in hostile environments. Yet we are berated for expecting to receive mother-baby-friendly, evidence-based care?

I will be embarking on a series of entries detailing my plight with the current medical-model-of-care. I will discuss how my age has affected my care. I will discuss how my income level has affected my care. I will discuss how my desire for true informed consent has affected my care. I will share my frustrations. I will share links to stories that prove it can be done. I will do everything in my power to bring awareness to the current cesarean epidemic plaguing our country. I will delve into issues of ethics involving the legal field entering into the practice of medicine. I will try to show you just how disgusting this system has gotten. I may isolate myself from some readers, but I don’t care. This isn’t pretty. This isn’t sexy. This is the truth. The truth hurts.


WhoData? YouData!

A couple weeks ago, a friend of mine shared a link to youdata.com. Basically, YouData offers to pay you pocket change for viewing ads and sponsored links. You sign up, fill out information about yourself, and you start viewing ads. Each Friday, they send out payment via paypal, and they dock a 2% fee (not to exceed a dollar) for the mass paypal transaction. I was a bit skeptical — I pride myself on sniffing out a scam that tries to pose as a legit deal — so I waited for her to confirmed that she received money in her paypal account. Last Friday, she did just that, so I signed up on Saturday. Over the course of a week, I collected $6.31 from viewing ads for about 15-30 minutes during the entire week. I didn’t have ads everyday, but it’s still money. After the transaction fee, I was due to collect $6.19. I received an email this afternoon confirming that my money had been sent, and voila!

I also get up to a dollar for each person I refer — and you can, too. Please check it out: http://www.youdata.com/join/meri1030. Times are tough, and we could all use some extra change here and there.


PPP Sponsored: My Favorite Perfume

Apparently a new website called Scent.net selling perfume and cologne will be up and running in the near future. Personally, I’m hoping they’ll carry Elizabeth Arden’s Sunflowers at a reasonable price. I’ve had such a hard time finding that particular perfume in recent years, which really is a shame. I first became familiar with this fragrance in middle school, and I absolutely fell in love. While it’s quite strong, a little spray here and there sends my olfactory receptors into euphoria. The scent lasts throughout the day, and it’s just so wonderful for special occasions. The Sunflowers line includes perfume and lotion, and I’ve had an even harder time trying to hunt down the lotion.


PPP Sponsored: Wood Furniture

I checked my email after lunch to discover that I will now be able to accept paid writing opportunities. My first mission — should I choose to accept it — was to locate a piece of wood furniture; from Scenic Furniture that I liked. That’s simple enough. So, I browsed through their collection of furniture, including bedroom sets, kitchen tables, and even cute little lamps. Each piece has a very Lincoln Logs type of feel to it, and I’d imagine this would be the perfect place to shop for log cabin decor that would make Honest Abe proud. All joking aside, this lovely cutting board caught my attention. I enjoy cooking and baking, so I use cutting boards on a regular basis. The beautiful colors would definitely add to my experience in the kitchen.

Have a look around at their furniture for yourself. Even if you’re not in the market for furniture, you might just enjoy “window” shopping.


The Difference

I find myself comparing my achievements to those of my peers and feeling rather unaccomplished in life — for example, a peer working in an office in the next building over has a crisp website layout, a fresh and concise résumé, and several clips under her belt already. I have this stale, old site, a relatively bland résumé, and no listing of my clips. I feel like my web-presence should be presented in a better manner, not to mention my occupational status. I’m still non-benefited (sadly, even the free food one can snag around here doesn’t quite count as an actual benefit). I slink back in my chair feeling less than worthy of recognition.

Then I realize there are glaring differences between me and my peers — I just so happen to have a family of my own to raise and care for. While my peers have plenty of time to climb the clichéd ladder, I spend much of my free time teaching my young children how the world works. It may not be even remotely as glamourous as my schoolmate from high school’s interactions with Hollywood’s biggest names, but I certainly do derive a high level of satisfaction from watching my children grow and change as individuals. Who says you really have to keep up with your peers in order to succeed?