Life... Health... Reviews...

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Shopping for furniture

Sometimes shopping for furniture can be a daunting task, but if you find a site that has a wide selection, good descriptions, easy navigation and reasonable prices then it'll make choosing the right pieces a lot easier. That's what you'll find at Furniture From Home.

Whether you're looking for a new bed or a new sofa you'll find just what you need (or want!) on this site. I did a little browsing at the beds (remember I told you I wouldn't mind getting a new one?) and I found a Contemporary King Platform Bed that is really stylish. And it looks comfortable too!

Take a look at the offerings at Furniture From Home and find the piece that’s right for you.

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Making the honor roll

Okay, I have to do a little bragging: My teenager currently has an "A" in every class and if she maintains her grades until the end of the semester or marking period (whatever they call it nowadays) then she will make the honor roll!

Now this isn't such a surprise or anything because she is an honors and AP student, and she has made the honor roll before BUT it doesn't make my being proud of her any less. She's been working very hard to maintain good grades despite her recent illness and the continued complications.

Teenager, #1, Munchkin... Amber, I am soooooo proud of you!
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Share your thoughts

The Internet has turned into a great place to be able to discover new information, post your thoughts, sell products, offer services and much more. One component that has brought a lot of people together is the creation of forums.

Thoughts.com Forums are an ideal place to share your thoughts with others who share common interests. With eight active main categories like Writing, Politics, Religion & Beliefs, Lifestyle and Entertainment there is a wide variety of topics and lively discussions going on.

There are a wide range of discussions going on within each main category, but the forum is well organized with everything being easy to find and understand. Although you have to register to participate, first-time visitors can review the Frequent Asked Questions page to find out everything they need to know before joining.

At Thoughts.com members are able to create a free blog or personal online journal, upload photos, videos, pod casts, chat in the community forums and bookmark the latest news. With each blog post you can decide whether you want it to be public, private or viewed by only your friends and family, which is a great feature if you’d just like to share certain information with specific people.

Currently Thoughts.com has 37,488 with almost 4,500 active members, and – from where I’m standing (typing? LOL.) – it would be a great idea to add your name to their roll.
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Medicine prices

I had to breakdown today and get myself some medicine for this sinus/cold/thing going on. I decided to get some Mucinex and non-drowsy Sudafed (well, I got the store brand).

The Mucinex, which was the pill form, was more than $9! I couldn't believe it. I asked the pharmacist's assistant if they had the liquid kind and she told me that it was the same as Robitussen. So, I checked the ingredients and although they have the same ingredients Mucinex is stronger (1200 mg in the extra strength compared to about 120 mg in the Robitussen). That's a big difference.

I'm glad I checked. An-t-way, I complained about the cost of the medicine for at least an hour because I didn't have a coupon or anything. I guess I should consider myself lucky since the Mucinex was on sale! The store brand Sudafed was only $3.99.

Geez, it sure does cost a lot to take good care of yourself!
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Choosing a web host

I've noticed that a lot of bloggers are choosing to go with their own domain name. For instance, Tammy now has MomKnowsEverything.com and Bradley is EgelNest.com instead of hosting their blogs through a blog host.

If you're interested in having your own web host then check out web hosting choice for a comprehensive guide. It's an advertisement free guide to choosing the right web host for your personal or business site.

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Mothers of Adult Children

As I've gotten older my mother and I have become pretty close. I guess I can say we're really close because we weren't close at all when I was a teenager. (I know some people may say, "Of course you weren't!" But given my experience with my teenage daughter I know it is possible to have a close, loving and peaceful relationship with a teenager.)

Over the past several months I've shared with my mother, who I talk to about once a week, some things I need to do around the house and with my vehicle. Now when I get her on the phone, almost the first thing she says is "did you do XYZ yet?"

Does she have to ask me that every time? It doesn't seem to be a simple inquiry or an effort to make conversation; it's almost as if she's checking up on me to make sure I'm doing what I'm supposed to do. She even had the nerve (okay, I can't think of a better word) to say to me when I was getting off the phone yesterday: "Make sure you be responsible and do all the right things."

SIGH!!

At this point in my life I don't want to be mothered. I'd like to have a friendship with my mother where she doesn't always feel it's necessary to give me advice or check to make sure I'm doing something I'm supposed to do. I'm 39, for goodness sake. And, I know for a fact, she doesn't do this with my brother!

I wondered if this is a common occurrence among mothers so I did a little searching and came across quite a few books on similar subjects. To me, it points to the fact that many moms/women are concerned or going through this. Here are the titles (and I know there are more) that I've found:

All Grown Up: Living Happily Ever After with Your Adult Children
Bringing Home the Laundry: Effective Parenting for College and Beyond
Parenting Your Adult Child: How to Help them Achieve Their Full Potential
Mothers & Their Adult Daughters

So, I've made a few decisions I'm hoping I can stick to: 1) Be more careful about what I share with my mother. 2) Be thankful that I have my mother to share things with. 3) Never make my daughter feel like she can't share stuff with me. (I'm continually working on this one. My teenager and I have a very close relationship and I am proud to say that I'm able to hold a conversation with her without always offering advice!)




Here's my beautiful teenage daughter... I'm thankful that we continue to have a very close relationship without all the normal teen-aged drama! :)
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Getting compensation you deserve

Many times people aren't aware of their rights when it comes to personal injury compensation and Accident Claims. If you've been injured at your place of employment or suffered a personal injury that was not your fault then you are entitled to personal injury compensation.

A friend of our family once suffered a personal injury in an accident and at the urgings of those close to her she sought out legal representation. The result was definitely in her favor and she was awarded a settlement that enabled her to not have to worry about the continued medical expenses, loss wages and other financial responsibilities.

Keypoint Legal Services can help you determine whether filing a personal injury claim is in your best interest by providing a free consultation. Keypoint has a specialized legal team that is honest, professional and fights for the rights of their clients to recover any compensation.

Whether you have suffered a personal injury (for instance, in a work-related accident, on the road or elsewhere) or have an illness resulting from your employment (like an industrial-related disease), you can receive a free, no obligation assessment of your claim. If you've suffered a personal injury, you may be entitled to compensation -- don't wait, find out today.
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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Top Mom Blog award


My friend Farah has honored me with an award that I absolutely love! Thanks Farah for thinking of me and for all your sweet comments. You are definitely a wonderful blogging mommy friend! :-)
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My babies

I know that I talk about my children a lot (Of course I do: It is my world! LOL) So I thought I would share a couple of photos since I got the camera working today...

Instead of saying "cheese," I tell my kids to say "applesauce!"



When you're taking pictures of three small ones; not everyone is paying attention at the same time. The baby blinked and Andre (#2) was entranced by the television...



For some reason they both decided to check on the baby. Uh, she looks okay to me...



Ut oh! Another blink. Well, at least she didn't cry! And now Amareah (#3) is distracted by the television...



And, finally, the biggest baby of them all: My teenager! She was at school when the others took their pictures and they were gone when she got home...



So, there ya have it... My babies!
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Homeowner loans

A couple of years ago I was convinced (I'm not going to say by who) to re-finance my home loan. That ended up being a stupid decision because I had a VA loan that had a fixed interest rate of a little over 4 percent. The loan was refinanced to an adjustable rate mortgage and, unfortunately, I didn't know that at the time.

(Okay, my own person sidebar is to never let someone convince you to do something when you're not on your Ps & Qs. Not to make excuses, but I was pregnant and just wanted to be left alone!)

Now as my mortgage payment continues to creep up I am getting a little concerned. I mean, let's face it, given my current marital and financial situations that doesn't put me in the best of positions.

So, whether you're trying to get your first home or interested in re-financing make sure you do the research and secure a loan that's right for you. Choosing Homeowner Loans can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. You have to consider how long you want the loan for, if you can handle the payments and what loan amount you want to get.

Good luck.
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Random thoughts

Not too long ago I shared with you that I'm gonna be posting on another site/community. I used to post stuff there (on Gather.com) a lot because the people give honest feedback and they're able to rate your writing. Their ratings equal points and the more points you get, the more prizes (gift cards, etc.) that you're eligible for.

I'm telling you this again because I hope you'll visit me over there and look at some of my old writing as well as check out some of the new stuff. Right now I'm working on a couple of poems... I guess they're poems although some of it could be considered more like prose.

I don't know. I'm no poetry expert.

These are the beginnings to the ones I like. Neither have a title yet (maybe you can help me with that):

What I told you that I wanted
Is exactly what I said
I guess it just got all messed up
Somewhere inside my head...


And the second one is:

You only think you want me
Because I am your memories
I am the girl you wanted to marry
The one to have your babies...


Well, I hope that's intrigued you enough to check me out on Gather and leave a comment and/or rating. I'll post these two poems before the end of the day (okay, when I say the end of the day, I mean by midnight!)
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Managing debt

Lately I've been hearing a lot of people talk about declaring bankruptcy and, what bothers me about this is, many of them don't seem like they have explored all of their options to pay off the debt. One option is to enlist the help of a debt management company and apply for an IVA.

Are you wondering what an IVA is?

An IVA is a legally binding agreement between you and the companies/creditors you owe money to. Arranging an IVA is a good idea if there seems to be no prospect of paying off all your debts on your own.

A licensed person from the debt management company will make arrangements with all of your creditors for you to pay whatever you can afford over a three- to five-year period. If at least three quarters of your creditors agree to the terms then your debt and any future interest is frozen.

As long as you can make the monthly payments then an IVA just might be the plan for you. For me, the thought of declaring bankruptcy is terrible and I would much rather pursue other options to clearing my debt; an IVA sounds like a smart decision to clearing a mountain of debt.
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What's a girl to do?

My health and wealth loss journal

I must say that although the weight isn't dropping as fast as I would like; I am pleased with the steady progress. I'm not going to complain because I rarely work out. I've simply been monitoring what I eat (you know, low fat, low calories and the occasional treat) and walking, aerobics or a little hand weight action.

Not bad, huh?

Now as far as my health is concerned: Things are going well in that area also. I've continued to take my medicine for the fibromyalgia and I think I've gotten better at handling stress and such so I don't feel as bad. The current problem is a chronic sinus condition. As usual I thought I had the flu because I couldn't breathe well and I couldn't shake a sore throat.

But, once again, my sinuses are kicking my booty. In an attempt to not take anymore medication I've been loading up on cayenne and black peppers, which assists with draining mucus (I know: Yuck, TMI!) and I'm downing Echinacea, which is a natural antibiotic. I don't know how many people believe in using foods and herbs to assist in their well being, but I much rather do that because it reduces side effects.

For instance, I take (a minimum of) 1,200 milligrams of Ibuprofen everyday. Did you know that a lot of pain medicines harm the lining of your stomach? I can only imagine what my stomach will be like if I continue to take that everyday.

An-t-way, overall I will say that I'm doing well with weight loss and medical stuff. Still some things to follow up on, but I'm "a okay!" :-)
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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Training courses

When I worked as an associate editor at a local business magazine, I had to take several training courses for different software and programs that my editor (manager) wanted me to learn. Those courses were invaluable and increased my knowledge in a lot of areas.

One of the course I thought was most valuable was the management courses that he put me through. Although my title was associate editor, I had the opportunity to perform a lot of duties that a managing editor would in preparation for me taking on that position.

Although some employees feel that training courses are an unwanted interruption of their time; the courses should be viewed as an opportunity to advance not only as an employee but as a person. Adding additional skills can be the difference between moving forward in a career and staying in the same place.

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My desk

On an almost weekly basis I have to clean off my desk. It gets to be really ridiculous. Yesterday's to-do list had "desk" written on it, but I didn't get to it. So I thought I would tackle it today.

This is what it looked like before...



And this is what it looked like afterward:



What do you think? Does it look any better? It's hard to tell the difference since I have those shelves and bulletin board, but the actual surface of the desk is better!

I have to admit something: Now I have to clean up the floor! Yes, I put everything that didn't belong on my desk on the floor:




SIGH! That's exactly why I can't keep the office clean. That and the fact that the baby pulls the piles down and the teenager hasn't been keeping her area clean. Oh, and we took some stuff out of storage and there's no place for my immense collection of books and... uh, I better stop now!
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Updating my bed

About four years ago, my husband and I bought a gorgeous four-columned, king sized bed with a wonderful pillow top mattress. Even though I love that bed I think I may be ready for a change. I'm sure you know what I mean: sometimes it feels like it's time for a change or an update. And sometimes it feels like you just want to do something special for yourself.

But even if I don't change the furniture in the master bedroom, I would love to have a guest room with French Beds. Can you imagine walking down the hall to a room in your house and finding a little piece of Paris? I can. It would be dreamy to get away and read a book pretending I've left the country. Or I could imagine I'm a writer on hiatus, but -- more realistically -- it would be a quiet sanctuary for guests to rest.

A French bed could also add a touch of romance and elegance. (It would be a special place to get away from the hustle and bustle of a house full of children.) Depending on the type of bed you choose, you can have an antique finish, delicate wood carvings, smooth curves and iron handles. All the things you need to achieve that French boudoir look.

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Guess what?

Did you guess? Okay, ask me where the baby is.

She's not here! A friend of mine hooked me up with his mother who is gonna watch the baby for a few hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays!

Are you as excited as I am?!

So, I'm going to try and stay focused and get as much done as I can before the teenager gets home, which is when I have to leave and pick up the baby. Then I guess I'll just go directly and pick up the other children.

I almost don't know what to do with myself ... What am I saying? I have a to-do list!

Guess I should get moving!

(That is my little angel at about four or five months old. I can't believe how she's changed. I'll have to take a current picture. She's now thinning out some, starting to stand up on her own... Isn't she adorable!?)
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Telemarketing services

As a freelance writer and editor I wear many hats. I have to be the accountant, the writer, the editor, the secretary and even the marketer, public relations specialist and more. Unfortunately, I'm not that strong in all areas particularly when it comes to marketing and telemarketing. Honestly, if I were better in those areas I may have more business.

Having a company handle the telemarketing services in any business can mean the difference between additional clients and lost business. Telemarketing services help to provide leads for businesses because they often have lead generation specialists. These specialists can set up appointments for sales teams and put your business in front of the decision makers.

So instead of spending time doing telemarketing calls; you can focus on the other important aspects of your business like closing the deal and delivering the product or service.

Having a telemarketing specialist can give any business an edge over the competition. Telemarketers can provide services such as appointment making, lead generation, database cleaning, customer maximisation, sales training and market research. Now, that sounds exactly what I need to take my freelance editing and writing business to the next level.
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What's wrong with me?

I don't know what's going on with my emotions today; I'm feeling teary and sensitive. Maybe it's the lost of sleep I experienced last night. Or the cold or whatever that has a hold of my chest. But whatever it is I wish it would pass.

The day started off okay. Well, as okay goes. Right when I was waking up the electricity went out because of the storm. I got up to take a shower and it went cold because the teenager had already taken her shower. So, without the water heater there wasn't anymore hot water.

I got dressed and got breakfast for #3 who was the first one up. Then for #4... before we finished #2 made his appearance. After dropping them off I got my fingerprints taken at the board of education's human resource office (did you know that's all done electronically now?) so I can get started substituting soon.

I talked to a good friend who was supposed to visit soon, but found out his grandmother passed away. I feel sad for him -- very sad for him. I've been thinking a lot about my past, about old "friends" and I guess I'm feeling nostalgic.

Beats me... I'll just be glad when it passes. I can't get anything accomplished or focus with my thoughts and emotions so scattered.

Guess it's just one of those days!
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Monday, February 25, 2008

Plastic surgery and new moms

I've often joked (well, half joked) that if I could afford to get a tummy tuck and a breast augmentation; I would do it. Having four children -- with three of them coming in four years -- has taken a toll on my stomach area. Not to mention my boobs.

There are many women who are struggling with the extra skin that is left over after pregnancy even after they've exercised and diet. I think, if a woman can afford it, that a tummy tuck and a boob job are viable options as long as there is adequate research done.

Some claim that cosmetic procedures for new mothers are worth every penny and I have to say that I agree. I believe that cosmetic surgery when done for the right reasons is a good way to get a little confidence back -- and get your figure back -- when you've already done everything you can (exercise, eating habits, etc.) to get the body you desire.

New mothers who are considering surgery should ask a number of questions and be well informed before making this major decision.
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A sweet award from a sweet friend

My friend Tammy (who has an awesome new design on her blog) gave me this award a little bit ago and I'm just getting around to posting it. Thanks Tammy for being such a sweet friend!



This one goes to Carrie, Syari and Farah.
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Lovin' the awards!

Syari gave me three awards and I'm really lovin' them. The blogging with purpose one is such an honor:



Having the excellence blog award is a wonderful compliment, which I also got from Carrie:



And being recognized with a five-star blog award is humbling!



I've noticed that most of my blogging friends have one or more of these awards and I want to pass it back to them. I'm also going to pass it onto those who read my blog on a regular basis (I don't want to miss acknowledgeing someone so I'm not going to list names). You know you who are: My wonderful friends! (If you don't have a blog, but you read my blog -- yes, I know there are a few of you out there -- know that I think you're excellent, you're a five-star friend and you have mad purpose in my life.)
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Posting in the Gather community


I've been a member of the Gather community for more than a year, but I haven't posted anything there in a very long time. So, I thought today would be a good day to start again. Nothing major... actually, I think I'll post poetry.

Poetry?!

Yes. That's right. I also write poetry. Well, let me re-phrase that: I used to write poetry a lot and lately some verses and thoughts have been welling up in me. They're overflowing and I've been jotting them down, typing them into the memo function of my phone and thinking about them.

If you're interested then check me out and Gather -- no pressure. Okay, yes there's pressure: If you're really my friend then you'll check it out! Okay, just kidding. Hope you enjoy!

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Ready for the week?

After a Friday road trip, Andre's last basketball game on Saturday and my first time at a MochaMoms meeting... I guess I've had a little too much excitement and fun. By the end of the day on Saturday the sore throat that had been threatening to take over hit full force and my body started to shut down.

Thankfully, on Sunday, I was able to relax a lot and rest while my wonderful teenager, Amber, took care of baby Anna. I even got a chance to map out my week's to-do list and annotate all of my appointments. But just the thought of tackling it is making me dizzy.

I don't feel 100 percent and the aching chest and sore throat are causing me pause, but -- as you already know -- like most moms I'm gonna try to push through and not miss too many beats. If I don't keep up then things will fall behind and I'll be all stressed out all over again.

So, I'm not sure if I'm physically ready for the week but here goes nothing... let's get started!

Happy Monday!
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